Bhutan or Tibet?


Jan 11th, 2007, 10:13 AM
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Bhutan or Tibet?

My travel agent is trying to convince me to skip Tibet and go to Bhutan instead. She believes that with the train to Lhasa and chinese control for so long that Tibet has lost its quality and ethnicity. Any opinions? I have been to Nepal and was amazed by the Tibetan people living there as refugees.
smarhoffer is offline  
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Jan 12th, 2007, 09:55 AM
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We went to Tibet (Lhasa) a few years ago and it was great. We would love to go to Bhutan.

If you are going to only one of them in your lifetime, it would be a difficult choice. But if it is a question of which comes first, I would suggest Tibet, before it loses its charm.
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Jan 12th, 2007, 10:18 AM
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Having been to both (Tibet in 1999 and Bhutan in 2006), I would strongly agree with your travel agent. Bhutan is truly the last Shangri-La. Bhutan is still relatively untouched by the outside world, but, with the growth of tourism, will probably lose some of what makes it unique . Sadly, Tibet has already lost much of its charm.
MariaL is offline  
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Jan 13th, 2007, 01:18 AM
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Well, I would say both if at all possible, on separate trips. There's an interesting book called "Mapping the Tibetan World" that explores the Tibet sphere of influence throughout Nepal, India, Bhutan, etc. I'm interested in all of these places.

I went to Bhutan last winter and it is truly a special place that sees very few travelers. I'll be writing a trip report about it soon. I'm planning to go to Tibet this summer. I know friends who go to Tibet often. Although it's rapidly changing, they say it's still a very special place.
Mealea is offline  
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Jan 13th, 2007, 08:45 AM
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Mealea - I get the feeling that smarhoffer is asking to choose which he should visit now.
Jed is offline  
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Mar 11th, 2007, 02:06 PM
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Hi. If you are going to do any trekking go to Bhutan. Otherwise, both offer you a great destination for a touring vacation.

Andy Crisconi
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Mar 11th, 2007, 06:42 PM
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Tibet 1999, Bhutan 2000.

Lhasa is very run don, least when I visited...the roads were full of potholes, power was unreliable, and the hotel we stayed at, at least, was not worthy of 1 star.

Bhutanese roads aren't the best, but they at east attempt to maintain them, and the hotels aren't particularly good there, although thy generally seem a little better than Tibet....but I don't travel for the hotels...I travel for the culture and shopping

Our guide in Bhuan was much more helpful to us in shopping advice, but there are fewer tourist oriented sites and things to do in Bhutan. OTOH, Bhutan has a unique architecture and dress.

Tibet, when we were there seemed more like a subjugated region, and moderately suppressed culture, while Bhutan didn't have that feeling.

In the final analysis, I would have to say go to Bhutan as a first choice, based on my 6+ year old experience.

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Mar 11th, 2007, 06:45 PM
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Tibet today (especially Lhasa) is very different from 1999. More tourists, better infrastructure, etc. Whether that's a good thing or not depends on one's perspective.
rkkwan is offline  
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Mar 12th, 2007, 06:42 AM
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Dear Smarhoffer,
If you were amazed by Tibetians refugees living in Nepal, Tibet will offer no better ground for your satisfaction. Tibet or Bhutan???Your trip depends on the season you travel and what actually you are looking forward to see and experience.Because both the country is different, even the religion is not similar although they all call it under one name as Buddhism.I'm a travel guide myself.
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