Trans Bhutan Trail reopens after six decades

After years of closure, the Trans Bhutan Trail has finally reopened

The historic Trans Bhutan Trail has reopened as a trekking route across a nation famous for its stunning Himalayan landscapes.

The 403km route links the community of Haa in the west of the country with Trashigang in the far east, traversing 12 mountain passes and five suspension bridges. It also visits 400 cultural and historic sites, including 21 temples and four dzongs (traditional fortresses).

After years of closure, the Trans Bhutan Trail has finally reopened

Originally a series of routes utilised by pilgrims, traders and armies, the trail was the sole way of travelling across the country until the 1960s. The routes fell into disuse with the construction of modern roads, but have been resurrected in an initiative spearheaded by King Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck.

Aside from being a unique way of exploring Bhutan’s breathtaking mountains, history and religious landmarks, the trail highlights the Kingdom’s principles on environment and sustainable development.

Hikers are not required to complete the entire route – which typically requires 36 days of hiking and reaches a maximum altitude of nearly 4,000 metres above sea level – and can choose shorter, less challenging stretches. Sections have also been upgraded for mountain biking.

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