For most purposes, Spring and Autumn are the best time for Bhutan tour. Yet, summer and winter have its own advantages and attractions.
A visit to Bhutan is possible throughout the year. Each month and season has its own beauty and appeal. And depending on what you plan to do in Bhutan, there are different favorable months and seasons.
We have both short and long duration tour packages available to suit your needs.
Bhutan enjoys four distinct seasons. Spring, summer (monsoon), autumn (fall) and winter.
Bhutan Tour in Spring Seasons
For nature lovers, spring (March, April, May) is the all-time favorite season to visit Bhutan. The local flora and fauna are at their best in spring in Bhutan.
The weather conditions are ideal with great visibility and mild temperatures. Spring is a popular and peak season to visit Bhutan. Make sure you book your flights well in advance to get your choice of seats and accommodation.
March and April
These months are the best time for Bhutan tour. You can enjoy the beautiful hillsides covered in colorful blossoms of the local flowers. Nature lovers can enjoy the full blooms of Jacaranda and more than 100 species of rhododendrons.
These months are also popular due to the pleasant temperatures and clear skies. These months see temperatures between 13-22 degrees Celsius in average.
These temperatures are ideal for comfortable and scenic treks in Bhutan. Treks to Druk Path and Jomolhari begin during the beginning of spring.
If long treks are not your thing, there are also beautiful day hikes in the mountains in comfortable and traditional tea houses.
May is the last month of the local spring season. The temperatures increase in May bringing humidity as well as the cloud over the mountains.
This month sees fewer visitors compared to March and April. Yet, the local flora in full bloom and lower everyday prices make it an ideal time to visit Bhutan. This month is perfect for those seeking to enjoy the perks of spring without the crowds at a less cost.
The rhododendrons, Jakaranda should also still be in bloom. This month is ideal for photographers and nature lovers.
Festivals in Spring:
Punakha Drubchen and Tshechu take place in March. It celebrates the founding of Bhutan in the 1600s. The main highlights of this festival are:
- The picturesque Punakha Dzong
- The dramatic recreation of Bhutan’s 17th century battle with the Tibetan army.
The Ura Yakchoe festival takes place in Bumthang during May. You can enjoy the renowned Ura Yakchoe dance, display of a sacred and important relic and get blessings.
One of the most popular festivals of Bhutan- Paro Tsechu also takes place during early April. It is also the best time to meet or see the Royal family. They usually take part during the 3rd and last day of the festivities.
Bhutan Tour in Summer
June, July, and August mark the local summer season in Bhutan. These months also experience monsoon showers. Unlike the tropical monsoons, monsoon in Bhutan is quite different.
Most of the rainfall takes place during the late afternoon and night time. You can enjoy your daytime tour of the beautiful dzongs, monasteries and country place in peace.
You can also enjoy your meditation and spas in the dzongs, caves with the beautiful, lush green nature as your backdrop. Monsoon brings the best out of nature. You can enjoy the lush green forests and the lively wildlife of the region.
Yet trekking during these months is not ideal. The trails do get muddy and slippery.
If you want to avoid the rain as much as possible yet enjoy the lower tariff and warm weather, then this is the best time for Bhutan tour for you. This is the beginning of the summer season. Hence, it sees very less to no amount of rainfall.
July and August
The weather is often clear and crisp with mild humidity in the air. These monsoon months of Bhutan is unlike monsoons of many parts of the world.
The rainfalls or showers occur every two to three days. This mild shower happens mostly during the late afternoon or night.
So, if you enjoy a little bit of rain, these can be the perfect months. With low tariff and fewer crowds, you get to enjoy the hospitality and attention of the locals everywhere you go.
Festivals in Summer
Kurjey Tshechu: This is one of the only festivals during this season. It takes place in July at Kurjey Lhakhang, in Bumthang Chokhor Valley. The locals believe that Guru Rinpoche left an imprint of his body on a rock inside the temple.
Guru Rinpoche introduced Buddhism to Bhutan. This is one of the places where he meditated.
Some of the lesser known festivals to take place during this season are:
Haa Summer Festival takes place in Haa during July.
The festival of Haa takes place amidst high altitude alpine forests, meadows and lakes. It is usually the celebration of the Bhutanese way of life, local cuisines and delicacies and cultures.
Mushroom Festival takes place during mid-August in Genekha, Thimphu.
Matsutake Mushroom Festival takes place during the last week of August in Ura, Bumthang.
Bhutan Tour in Autumn
September, October, and November are autumn months of Bhutan. Autumn is the 2nd best time for Bhutan tour. The cool temperatures and dry weather conditions are ideal for hiking and attending festivals.
The clear skies give way to stunning views of the hillside and surrounding landscape.
September is the beginning of the autumn season in Bhutan. You can see the last traces of monsoon during the first week of September.
Around 80% of all international visitors plan to visit Bhutan in October. Make sure you plan in advance to ensure you get your preferred flights, accommodation.
October sees the valleys turn into a shade of gold. October is when the local rice farmers prepare to harvest their rice crops.
Late October marks the arrival of the endangered black-necked cranes.
This is one of the ideal months to witness the black-necked cranes in their natural habitat. By November, the annual migration of these endangered birds is complete. They migrate from the Tibetan Plateau to the protected Phobjikha Valley each year.
These regions are their home from late October to early February. There is a festival around the endangered birds in November. It takes place in Gangtey.
By November, the temperatures start to drop. Early mornings and nights can be cold with temperatures of 10-12 degrees Celsius.
Festivals in Autumn
Black-necked crane festival (November):
This festival celebrates the arrival of the endangered black-necked cranes. The annual migration takes place around late October to early November. This festival takes place in the courtyard of Gangtey Gonpa to promote the conservation of these beautiful birds.
Jambay Lhakhang Drup Festival takes place during the last week of October or early November.
This 5 days festival fulfills two purposes; A tribute to Guru Rinpoche and Commemoration of an establishment of Jambay Lhakhang in the 7th century.
You can enjoy the beautiful traditional and mask dances. You can also witness the fire ceremony (Mewang) and the religious dance ‘Tercham’.
Thimphu Tsechu: Thimphu tsechu is a grand festival that takes place in the modern capital of Bhutan, Thimphu. Wangdue tsechu takes place around the same time as Thimphu Tsechu.
October presents a great opportunity to witness this two different tsechus in a single visit.
Bhutan Tour in Winter
December to February are the coldest months of Bhutan. These months are winter season.
The cool temperatures of 8-16 degrees Celsius are pleasant in the cities of Thimphu and Paro. Yet, higher up, the temperatures are freezing.
For those who don’t mind the chill, can enjoy the clear skies and snowy mountain views.
December marks the beginning of winter. The first week of December is not as cold. You can enjoy clear, bright blue skies and majestic views of the hillside.
It is the perfect month to enjoy the benefits of the autumn season with fewer crowds.
January and February
With the winter in full swing, Bhutan enjoys a few days of snowfall even in the lower valleys. The snow days are usually declared national holidays in Bhutan. You can enjoy snow games with the locals or watch a snow fight from a safe distance.
These months also experience gale force winds through high altitude mountain passes. Be prepared with the right clothing for a comfortable tour or winter trek in Bhutan.
Make sure you have some extra days. There can be roadblocks due to extreme weather conditions during these months.
Festivals in Winter
Trongsa Tshechu – This tsechu takes place in Trongsa Dzong. Due to the cold climate, very fewer travelers visit Bhutan during this season. Hence, you will get an intimate look into the traditions and culture of Bhutan through this festival.
This festival has some of the most elaborate costumes and masks for the dance performances.
This festival takes places during December or January.
Nomad Festival: This festival takes place in Bumthang during the last week of February. It brings the local herders of the northeastern and northwestern Himalayan frontiers at the same place.
This unique festival leads to an unforgettable celebration of their culture and traditions.
Tips for Bhutan Tour
- If you decide to travel during the spring and autumn season, make sure you book at least half a year ahead. Bookings fill up quickly for these popular seasons.
- If you don’t want to miss the important tsechus or festivals, you can book special packages that revolve around these. Paro Tsechu festival tour, Thimphu Tsechu trek are some examples of these packages.
- Bhutan follows the Bhutanese lunar calendar. Hence, the dates of the Tsechus do fall at different times of the months every year. To make sure you don’t miss them, inquire ahead of your booking.
- Do not feel disappointed if no tsechus take place during the time of your visit. Many of these need advance preparations. You are sure to find places where the monks are preparing or rehearsing most time of the year.
- Festivals are religious events in Bhutan. It is a privilege to witness them. Make sure to conduct yourself accordingly.
- Photographs are generally acceptable during the dance performances. Make sure to maintain common courtesy. Make sure you don’t intrude the dance performances.
- Many small villages in Bhutan have their own local festivities. You can inquire to participate in them for an intimate look into the life of the locals.
- Besides sightseeing tours and treks, Bhutan is also famous for its ‘Tour of the Dragon’. This is one of the toughest single-day bike events in the world. You can choose to participate or simply watch it.
A tour of the fascinating country of Bhutan is one of the most sought-after tour destinations. With amazing views, preserved tradition, lifestyle, and nature, it makes for fabulous scenes.
Depending on what you expect from your visit to Bhutan, choose the month or season. As mentioned above, a visit to Bhutan is possible at any time of the year. However, Autumn and Sring are the best time for Bhutan tour.
Every month and season has its own unique appeal and charm. For any further queries or questions to visit, tour or trek in Bhutan or Nepal, feel free to contact us.