Reaching Jaigaon and How to do the Bhutan Permits
We woke up early the next day to leave for Jaigaon which would be the border town where we would be staying for a day before heading to Bhutan after completing the paperwork and the Bhutan Permits.
How to Reach Jaigaon:
We had booked the vehicle for the eight days so we did not have to spend time searching for a vehicle to take us to Jaigaon or the border. As promised the Vehicle arrived at 930. We had our tea and breakfast and left for Jaigaon it was a 5-6-hour journey through the tea estates and wildlife Sanctuaries of West Bengal. The Journey was going to be fun and we were supposed to wait at different locations on the way if they wouldn’t be taking a lot of time to visit.
The First stop was Teesta Barrage also our lunch spot for the day.After having Lunch of Fish, Prawns, omelets and Maggi we continued our journey to Jaigaon. The food was tasty and deep fried in a lot of mustard oil. On our way to Jaigaon we stopped at one of the sanctuaries but couldn’t visit it as we would have got late to reach Jaigaon so instead, we shopped there for some local goods before getting back on the path to Jaigaon. We finally reached Jaigaon at around 3 where we were supposed to pay the remaining account and we would be getting a new vehicle from the next day.
We were given rooms to stay at around Rs 1000 per day again for 3 people for the night and forms for the permits were filled and given to the person who was going to help us with the Bhutan trip. After filling the forms and completing the formalities from our side the evening was free for us to roam the streets of Jaigaon and Phuentsholing. You are allowed to visit Phuentsholing without a permit and roam the city and get an idea of what you will be experiencing in the Land of Thunder Dragon, Bhutan.
After visiting the monastery situated in Phuentsholing, we had some street food at the many shops near the border. People from Bhutan come to the Indian side for having the Thukpas, Momos and the other dishes.
The Dinner was done at Hotel Doars good place to have some awesome local food.After some dinner of Rotis Chicken, Rice and Dal. We headed back to the room as we had to get up early to do the Permits.
How to do the Bhutan Permits.
We got up early the next day to do the Bhutan permits after which we would be heading to Thimpu. Most of the procedure was going to be done by our driver as he had taken around Rs 200 pp from us. But the process got done smoothly and we did not face any difficulties and we were out of the immigration center in less than 20 mins. Inside the officials checked our documents, took our fingerprints and photos. The process is easy and if you have the required documents either a voter ID or Passport the process is smooth. The benefit of the agent doing it for you is it takes a lesser amount of time and they do everything for you.You have to just get yourself clicked and your fingerprints were taken.
Till our permits were getting done we went to the food stalls and had some breakfast of Parathas, Aloo Chops and Samosas. Once the Bhutan permits got done the guide gave us a call and asked us to come meet. Our Guide for the Bhutan Trip Tashi Tobgay. He would be our driver cum tour guide for the rest of our trip. From Showing us around the places, helping us with restaurants and finding places to stay it was all going to be done by him. Though we had got our hotels booked from India itself the rest of the thing Tashi would be helping us with.
Documents that were required while doing the permits: Passport/Voters ID, Couple of passport photos, Hotel Booking receipts.
You also need to be dressed in something formal before entering the immigration office.
How to reach Thimpu from Jaigaon
There are several ways to reach Thimpu the cheapest way is to reach by Bus which leaves at regular intervals from Pheunstoling, also you can take a cab to Thimpu from which costs around Rs 3000 for 4 people.
We had booked a Cab for the whole trip and it had come up to something around Rs 5000 per day including sightseeing and traveling to different places in Bhutan.
Finally, the trip from Jaigaon to Thimpu started a 6-hour journey through the Ghats of Bhutanese Mountains. The winding Ghats, the beautiful scenery and the cold weather it had it all. The vehicle had to stop at a few checkpoints to get our Bhutan permits stamped. The Dhaba type of place where we stopped for Lunch served some awesome Thupka’s and Chowmiens.
We reached Thimpu by 7, where we had already done our bookings at Hotel Ghasel. After freshening up we went to a local restaurant FoodBall, before calling it a day as we had to get up early to extend our permits so we could visit Punakha.
To watch videos of our trip to Bhutan Click Here
To read more about Bhutan Click Here