[In Focus with Michele Burgess]


 

***EXOTIC TRAVEL DESTINATIONS***

TOUR WITH A PROFESSIONAL PHOTOGRAPHER

TO EXTRAORDINARY WORLD PLACES

Exotic destinations and grand adventures worldwide
with Michele Burgess, professional travel and wildlife photographer

 

Bhutan — Land of the Thunder Dragon. Largely untouched by the modern world, Bhutan is an enigmatic mountain kingdom of green valleys crowned with majestic fortress-like dzongs, monasteries, and chortens (shrines). This is a country where the rice is red and where chilies aren’t just a seasoning but the main ingredient. It’s also a deeply Buddhist land, where monks check their smart phones after performing a divination, and where giant protective penises are painted at the entrance to many houses. Yet while it proudly prioritizes its Buddhist traditions, Bhutan is not a land frozen in time. The Bhutanese are well educated, fun loving, and very well informed about the world around them. It’s this blend of the ancient and modern that makes Bhutan endlessly fascinating.

 

There is the pristine eastern Himalayan landscape, where snow-capped peaks rise above primeval forests and beautiful traditional villages. In this picture-book setting, many of the dzongs and monasteries act as a stage for spectacular tsechus (dance festivals) attended by an almost medieval-looking audience. Then there are the textiles and handicrafts, outrageous archery competitions, and stunning flora and fauna. Environmental protection here goes hand in hand with cultural preservation. By law, at least 60% of the country must remain forested for all future generations; it currently stands above 70%.

 

You will find the Bhutanese welcoming in showing you their deeply Buddhist and traditional way of life, where Gross National Happiness (the national motto) is more important than gross domestic product. If this isn’t “Shangri-La,” it’s about as close as it gets.  (April 3-19, tour closed) 

 

 

Bhutan is the final tour of my 38-year career in travel, during which I visited 130 countries on all 7 continents.
Thank you for sharing so many wonderful adventures with me!  



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