Dangers & Annoyances
Thimphu is a very safe city and, though crime rates are rising, they are still at very low levels.
- Barking dogs are an annoyance at night and you should bring earplugs if you want to get an uninterrupted night's sleep.
Emergency & Important Numbers
There is no obvious gay or lesbian scene or venues in Thimphu. All of Bhutan, including the capital, is conservative in its view of sexuality. Gay sex is technically illegal in Bhutan, though no-one has ever been prosecuted for this.
There are a dozen or so internet cafes spread around town, all charging around Nu 60 per hour. Most hotels and cafes offer free wi-fi.
Most hotels can change money at government rates, although they usually have a limited supply of cash. Bank of Bhutan (BOB) and Druk PNB ATMs accept Visa and MasterCard.
Bhutan National Bank In the same building as the post office, this bank changes cash and Amex travellers cheques.
Druk PNB Bank Has an ATM that accepts MasterCard, Visa, Maestro and Cirrus cards, and changes cash (no travellers cheques).
TBank Opposite the Taj Tashi hotel; changes cash.
We provide business hours only if different from these standards.
Government offices 9am–1pm and 2pm–5pm in summer, until 4pm in winter, Monday to Friday
Banks 9am–1pm Monday to Friday, 9am–11am Saturday
Shops 8am–8pm or 9pm
Clubs Generally close at midnight on weekdays and at 2am Friday and Saturday
Bars Close at 11pm on weekdays and midnight on Friday and Saturday. Closed Tuesday – the national 'dry' day.'
Travel With Children
Thimphu was not built with wheelchairs in mind. There are few ramps, limited numbers of elevators and lots of curbs; even a flat section of pavement is a relative rarity. On the plus side, your guide is there to help you navigate the streets and you can expect everyone to be more helpful than you could imagine. Most of the tourist hotels, and certainly those four stars and above, have elevators, though few if any have wheelchair-accessible bathrooms or showers.
Survey of Bhutan Sells usable tourist maps of Paro, Bumthang and Thimphu.