Bhutan Blunders: Things That Went Terribly Wrong With The Trip!

Bhutan Blunders

Sometimes life hands you a lifetime opportunity to trip to Bhutan (Yay!) and sometimes it throws you off the trekking trail while descending a rain-slicked path (Hell!).

Travel isn’t always rainbows and gorgeous skies!

But we are not ashamed to admit that we make mistakes, particularly while traveling! 😀 After all, to err is human! And mistakes lead to learning.

As much as couple travel bloggers wish to present the world of travel blogging as a multicolor path of beauty and love, and ultimate experiences, the truth is, shit happens! And it happens when you are least expecting it.

So we finally decided to write about the blunders we made while planning and vacationing in Bhutan and guys! we are no more reticent about it.

1. Booking Tickets for Bhutan Far in Advance

We got a bit carried away while booking our airlines for Bhutan and left little room for a change of plans. And as luck would have it, we booked ourselves for the wrong return date. So with a little leeway for spur of the moment decisions, we had to cancel our flight tickets and bear a huge cost for re-bookings.

So while it’s always good to be smart and save a little more by booking well ahead of travel date – sometimes wise planning and great planning can also leave you in an unpleasant situation. 

We don’t regret this one though, we had a lot of fun on this particular trip! 🙂

2. Packing Woes

Usually, travelers have issues with overpacking stuff and carrying along things they do not need on a holiday. But with us – it’s kinda opposite! We are not extremely cautious while packing clothes and that’s one reason we always reach in places with extremely cold climatic conditions without woolens. :-/
Not once or twice, this was the third time that we forgot to pack in our woolies when it was still a bit cold in Bhutan!

I cannot forget the day we started our road trip to Bhutan and started feeling the chills. So when we unpacked our bags and found a series of dresses and t-shirts, both of us could do nothing except for laugh at our stupidity.

Trip to bhutan

It got really chilly as the trip’s end was nearing

trip to bhutan

Had to cover myself up in some pretty stoles coz we did not carry woolies :(

3. Not Carrying Rain Gear Intentionally (Such big fools)!

We truly loathe ourselves for the moment we both got a wee bit over smart and intentionally planned to leave behind our rain gear in our rented car on the day we had to hike the Tiger’s Nest Monastery in Bhutan.

It was one time in our lives when we felt helpless as hell and couldn’t stop swearing for our stupid mistake. Obviously, it rained while we were descending down the trail and we couldn’t stop tripping over and again, only to be rescued by the local Bhutanese fellow people.

You can read about our slippery Tiger’s Nest trekking experience, here. 

4. Not Making Prior Booking for a Hotel (On the Day of Indian Festivity)

That landed us into a hotel that was more of a jail

Trust me, it’s not like we have prepared our bodies just for luxury traveling, we’ve had our share of stays in 2 and 3-star hotels which were equipped with at least the basic amenities. But this one was sheer bad luck or may be a lesson which we’d never forget.

We reached Phuentsholing late night with the only motive to check back into the hotel we had checked in at the beginning of our trip to Bhutan. (What we were hoping to be lucky again!) And there hit the tragedy!

The hotel was totally packed, and not just that hotel, each and every single hotel in the area, or may be within the radius of 10kms (that much we must have walked on foot to look for a hotel) were totally booked.

Traveling in India for a solo traveler or a couple is equally challenging, and must add, it’s a bit unsafe as well. And being homeless, at almost 9 in the evening on Delhi streets is definitely not something you would ever want to do.

So eventually our last resort was to call the driver we had booked for next morning, the very same night, on a short notice (our luck he was around) to take us outside the Jaigaon area and help us look for another hotel.

We did manage to find a room in a motel but the unpleasant conditions (for e.g. twittering of an unknown insect throughout the night, smelly towels, etc.) kept us awake almost the entire night. What a waste!

So no more landing in unknown places without pre-booking hotels just to save a few bucks!

5. Not Wearing Appropriate Clothes to Tiger’s Nest Bhutan

Last but the most idiotic mistake we made on our Bhutan trip was not wearing appropriate clothes to the most sacred monastery – Tiger’s Nest. And this too when we knew that monasteries have a stricter dress code, and one has to dress up demurely!

trip to bhutan

Harsh in knee-length pants at the Tiger’s Nest entryway

Harsh perhaps wore knee-length capris, which prohibited him entry to the monastery (yes after trekking so much and then even climbing 800 steps). Though I got an entry but he’ll always remain disappointed about not making inside the monastery. 

The bottomline, you need long pants and decent shirts for such religious places! Period!

The crux is, Albert Einstein truly said, “A person who never made a mistake never tried anything new,” And as travel bloggers, we couldn’t agree more! And now even you know why! 😉

Step upon your travel mistakes and try to live with them! Just chill and take a deep breath. And remember you are not alone! There’s a reason we all love to travel? To push our comfort zones and see beyond the proverbial box!

Have you made any travel mistake (s) that you are too shy to share? Leave us a comment! 

Suggested Read:

Varanasi Experiences: City at a Glance

Packing for Conservative Countries: A Lookbook

Cultural Delight: Bhutanese Festivals In Photos

 

Author: Prerna

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22 Comments

  • Reply AlicevstheWorld February 11, 2017 at 4:32 pm

    I’ve made the ‘packing for the wrong climate’ mistake as well. Although in my case it was packing jumpers and cardigans ‘just in case’ for a trip that would turn out to be slap bang in the middle of a heatwave. I won’t be making that mistake again!

    • Reply admin February 13, 2017 at 7:22 am

      So glad to know another seasoned traveller agree with us – travel can be annoying but definitely we aren’t repeating these mistakes again!

  • Reply Efthimis K. February 11, 2017 at 6:33 pm

    We all make mistakes during our trips, but we don’t usually share them online. I’m really glad that you did and I will keep all of these in mind before I organize a journey to Bhutan!

    • Reply admin February 13, 2017 at 7:24 am

      Hehe Efthimis – thanks. We just try to be positive and choose to focus on the glass half full.

  • Reply Suze February 11, 2017 at 10:06 pm

    I feel your pain! I forgot my swimming costumes on our last trip to Tenerife and had to go and buy some with very little time to spare. I need to dig out my old packing list! Thanks for the honest post

    • Reply admin February 13, 2017 at 7:26 am

      Thanks Suze – we always try to put both the pros and cons of traveling in front of our readers! 🙂

  • Reply Laura February 12, 2017 at 12:43 am

    It sounds like you had quite a lot of packing woes. I always pack my thermals unless I’m sure its a super hot destination and you’ll never catch me without a rain jacket!

    • Reply admin February 13, 2017 at 7:30 am

      You are a smart travelers, Laura – we really are hoping to learn from our mistakes and never repeat them ever again!

  • Reply Swati & Sam February 12, 2017 at 12:47 pm

    Even we are little careless while packing. I remember we had packed summer dresses for a trip to UK and Ireland in the month of October. We were shivering in the cold winds of October. Finally we had to buy jackets and scarfs from H&M and M&S. Still I feel it was crazy.

    • Reply admin February 13, 2017 at 7:25 am

      I totally hear you Swati and Sam! It must be frustrating!

  • Reply RaW | Ramble and Wander February 12, 2017 at 6:18 pm

    We all have made mistakes whilst travelling, it’s just a matter of whether or not we want to admit them and write about them 😉 Anyways, I’d be sharing this with my friend who’s travelling to Bhutan in April just to make sure she doesn’t do the same mistake. 🙂

    • Reply admin February 13, 2017 at 7:32 am

      That would be great! We hope nobody finds themselves in such a situation! 🙂

  • Reply Emily February 12, 2017 at 10:14 pm

    Oh no! Hindsight is a beautiful thing isn’t it? I’ll try not to smirk too much – it happens to us all. I remember going to Egypt and not taking anything warm to wear – it was summer after all – but of course on the overnight train the air con was on max and I spent the night wide awake and shivering in a thin shirt. Thanks for being so honest!

  • Reply Vicki Louise February 13, 2017 at 2:22 am

    I would be devastated if I climbed 800 steps+ up to the Tigers Nest Monastery and wasn’t allowed in! That is definitely a hard way to learn from your mistakes! Good on you for sharing though – hopefully no-one else will make the same mistake again!

  • Reply Laura Lynch February 13, 2017 at 12:00 pm

    These sound like the same mistakes we always make. We are notorious underpackers and find ourselves in situations without the right clothing or gear. I just hate lugging heavy bags! Rain gear is always a problem too. Ugh. When will we learn!

    • Reply admin April 22, 2017 at 2:47 pm

      It’s always good to know we are not alone in this – traveling can at times be annoying but it’s at the end fulfilling. 🙂

  • Reply Trisha Velarmino February 13, 2017 at 5:45 pm

    I hear you, girl! That’s why it’s best to do more research, especially with the dress codes! Had a similar experience once in Cambodia, but glad I was able to find a proper attire to go in the temple. There will always be mistakes along the way, but hey, charged to experience! 🙂

  • Reply elisa February 14, 2017 at 7:05 pm

    Oh my . . . hope you learnt the lesson for future trips. Good luck! Hope this post will be helpful for future visitors and they won’t make the same mistakes.

  • Reply La Vida Viva Travel March 12, 2017 at 12:18 am

    Things going wrong always allows for a great learning experience, doesn’t it! I have done the same with not booking accommodation the night before a big event / holiday and damn, it was so tough so I feel you!

  • Reply Simon Rogers April 3, 2017 at 12:19 am

    Great post. We want to visit Bhutan and will be sure to take some of this advice. I like when people share the not so good parts of their trips because sometimes travelling can be tough, like you said 🙁 thanks for sharing 🙂

  • Reply Michael Cotton April 13, 2017 at 6:15 am

    Overcoming adversity is part and parcel of travel. But you live and learn from your mistakes, so on your next trip, you won’t make them again. I’m glad you were able to still enjoy the beauty of Bhutan.

  • Reply Becky April 18, 2017 at 6:38 pm

    Ha ha so funny, it’s always the way when you make a decision to leave something behind you automatically want it. I’ve just come back from a weekend camping and why did I leave my lovely warm down jacket at home I have no idea but it was flipping freezing at night sat around camp. Well I guess we all learn from our mistakes. I would love to go here …. another one on the list!!!

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