Suggested Packing List & Weather (Bhutan)

Bhutan is at the same latitude as Miami and Cairo. The climate varies widely depending on the elevation. In the southern border areas it is tropical; at the other extreme, in the high Himalayan regions, there is perpetual snow. Temperatures in the far south range from 15°C in winter (December to February) to 30°C in summer (June to August). In Paro the range is from -5°C in January to 30°C in July, with 800mm of rain. In the high mountain regions the average temperature is 0°C in winter and may reach 10°C in summer, with an average of 350mm of rain.


The spring season (late March, April & May) and autumn season (late September, October and November) are the most popular times to visit with generally clear, mild weather, excellent scenery and lower rainfall.


The winter season (December to mid March) brings snow to the higher regions however the southern regions and main valleys where visitors generally travel are considerably warmer. Paro and Thimphu normally experience only light dustings of snow so still well worth a visit with mid December to mid-January normally offering cool, pleasant days and clear skies although temperatures fall below zero at night.


The summer season (June-mid to mid September) you may experience occasional heavy falls of rain during the afternoons. Bhutan is so green in summer and full of clear streams and waterfalls. While you may not experience grand Himalayan vistas at this time, you will enjoy the warmer weather and a noticeable reduction in tourist numbers. It is a beautiful time to visit.

Monsoon Season

Rain occurs primarily during the southwest monsoon season from June to September. Bhutan bears the brunt of the monsoon, receiving more rainfall than other Himalayan regions – up to 5.5m a year. During the monsoon, heavy rain falls almost every night; in the day there may be long periods without rain. Low clouds hang on the hills obscuring views and, if they are too low, forcing the cancellation of flights at Paro airport.

Dress Code for Entering Dzongs & Monasteries

Depending on whom you talk to the exact dress code for Dzongs, Monasteries and Temples can differ. Use the details below to assist with your planning and we recommend you discuss each days visits with your guide to reconfirm appropriate attire.

  • Shirt (either half or full sleeves)
  • Full long pants or long skirts (ankles must be covered)
  • Shoes of any type with socks covering ankles - we recommend comfortable shoes easy to remove
  • No hats, umbrellas, slippers, T-shirts, knee length / short skirts or 3/4 pants
  • Photographs only allowed to be taken in the courtyard of most Monasteries.

Satellite phones and drones

Please be aware that carrying satellite phones and/or drones is not permitted in Bhutan. Please do not bring these items with you.

Suggested Packing List

We recommend that you check the weather forecast prior to your departure so that you can pack accordingly. Tourists do not need to dress too formally - plain, simple and inoffensive clothing is suitable (no singlet tops or shorts, 3/4 pants are fine as long as not entering Dzongs or Monasteries). Remember to pack warmer clothing for the evenings and a pair of good walking shoes or light boots (unless trekking where heavier boots are recommended). Loose fitting, lightweight cotton materials are the most comfortable for humid weather, while layers of warmer clothes are advised for cooler evenings. A waterproof jacket will be required for the wetter conditions in monsoon season. The dress code throughout the tour is casual; however, it is important that all passengers dress conservatively. Smart casual clothes are highly recommended for evening banquets and shows.

  • Your travel documents and passport; including a photocopy of your passport in case it is lost or stolen while you are abroad. Keep one photocopy at home and take another photocopy on your trip with you.
  • Main luggage & luggage padlocks
  • ‘Day bag’ - a smaller bag to carry with you during the day, both while driving and sightseeing. E.g. drinking water, hat, sunscreen, toilet paper, insect repellent, camera and spare batteries, jacket.
  • Money belt to carry passport, cash, credit cards, airline tickets, etc.
  • Trousers (or long skirts for women) – please remember to respect local customs (knee length is recommended).
  • Shirts or long-sleeved tops of light cotton material
  • Walking shoes and socks – it is important to have sturdy and comfortable shoes for sightseeing every day.
  • Sun protection – hat, sunscreen and lip balm
  • Personal medical kit including insect repellent - visit Travel Health
  • Antibacterial wipes and/or hand sanitiser to clean hands before eating
  • Tracksuit/similar outfit of soft material is recommended for the overnight train journeys
  • A water/windproof jacket
  • Light jumpers/thermals are great for layering, including gloves and scarf
  • A ‘modesty shawl’ or sarong to wear in Muslim or conservative areas (for women)
  • Torch, conversion plug and spare batteries – batteries available to buy in India tend to be unreliable
  • Scarf or bandana – useful to protect your face against dusty winds at high altitude
  • Spare glasses – it is difficult to get any prescription lenses repaired or replaced 
  • Small bath towel is useful for overnight train journeys
  • Toiletries (soap, shampoo, lotion) – for personal use during homestays.
  • Toilet paper – not all public toilets will provide this
  • Snacks – tea bags/coffee, milk powder or sachets, instant soups or noodles, or anything else you can’t live without!
  • Camera and memory card
  • If travelling to Ladakh - ‘Sleep sheet’ or sleeping bag – in remote areas linen is provided but possibly not up to the standard you are used to. If you already have a compact and lightweight sleeping bag you could also bring that.
  • A supply of face masks