Comfortable clothing and good shoes are essential for travel in Bhutan. Warm clothing is recommended; and except for summer months, down jackets and woolen sweaters are suggested. In summer, heavy cottons and light weight woolens will be acceptable. Altitudinal differences account for a wide range of temperatures during day and night.. It is, therefore, suggested that you get good and warm clothes.
You may also carry clothes and other accessories like:clothes as per season, sunglasses / spare glasses, pair of casual shoes, hat, umbrella, camera, films and accessories, insect repellent, hand cream, small sewing kit & safety pins, torch or flash light with spare batteries, mirror, scissor, sun cream, lip salve or soluble aspirin, antiseptic cream, anti-histamine cream, anti-diarrhea pills, a preparation for the relief of sunburn.
Casual clothes are fine, but you would also do well to have a set of dress-up clothes (jacket and tie for men, dresses for women) for festivals or in the likely event that you are invited to a Bhutanese home or social function. Thimphu and other towns in Bhutan have a small-town atmosphere, and you might easily find yourself in the company of a high government official. If you have scheduled your trip around a festival, you definitely should carry a set of dressy clothing. Bhutanese people dress quite formally, and dirty jeans don’t fit in on such occasions.
While visiting temples and other religious places, proper dress is essential. Slacks are more appropriate for men ; and longer – length skirts are more appropriate for women. Shoulders must also be covered when inside religious buildings. Please keep in mind that shoes must be removed when entering temples.
Even in the summer, it can be cool in Paro and Thimphu, and it’s downright cold in winter. Days can be quite warm, especially in the lower regions such as Punakha and Phuentsholing, and you could start off driving in the cold of dawn and be uncomfortably warm by mid-morning. Use a layering system, starting with thermal underwear and adding a shirt, pile jacket and windbreaker or parka as necessary.
If you are not trekking, you will need:
- Underwear (including thermals for cold weather)
- Swimming costume (for the hotel swimming pool in Punakha)
- Cotton trousers
- Cotton skirt for women
- Pile jacket or sweater – even in summer
- Down jacket – in winter; not needed in summer
- T shirts or short sleeved (not sleeveless) cotton shirts * sneakers or walking shoes and socks
- Sandals or flip flops
- Rain jacket – Gore-Tex if you can afford it, otherwise a poncho or nylon jacket
- Dress-up clothes for festivals
- Sun hat
All hotels provide sheets, blankets or quilt, and a pillow. Unless you are trekking, you won’t need to carry bedding or a sleeping bag. Most hotels also provide some sort of heating in winter, either an electric heater or a wood stove. The heating, plus the pile of blankets on your bed, should keep you warm.
You will be outside a lot, and much of this time is at altitudes above 2,500 m (7,800 ft); so there is plenty of sun and wind. Bring a supply of sun cream and some lip protection, such as Blistex; these items are not available in Bhutan.
While on trek you will be provided with foam mats but if you are used to better equipments, you maybring it. If you are choosing a trek, you must bring a good quality Sleeping bag and a pair of treeking shoes.