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Bhutan - The Land of Gross National Happiness
Bhutan often referred to as the "Land of the Peaceful Dragon" is still regarded as one of the last 'Shangri-la of the Himalayan region because of its remoteness, its spectacular mountain terrain, varied flora and fauna and its unique Buddhist Ancient monasteries. It is relatively unexplored pocket of Asia which allows only limited number of discerning travellers to enter the country in order to protects its fragile environment and culture.. to know more about The Land, The People and The Culture of Bhutan
The Kingdom of Bhutan is one of the remotest places the last Shangri-La in Himalayas, located at the eastern end of the Himalaya Mountains and bordered to the south, east and west by the Republic of India and to the north by the Tibet Autonomous Region. The Bhutanese called their country Druk Yul, which means "Land of Dragon".
Bhutan used to be one of the most isolated countries in the world. Developments including direct international flights, the Internet, mobile phone networks, and cable television have increasingly modernized the urban areas of the country. Bhutan balanced modernization with its ancient culture and traditions under the guiding philosophy of Gross National Happiness (GNH). Fervent protection of the environment has been a top priority. The government takes great measures to preserve the nation's traditional culture, identity and the environment. In 2006, Business Week magazine rated Bhutan the happiest country in Asia and the eighth-happiest in the world, citing a global survey conducted by the University of Leicester in 2006 called the "World Map of Happiness".
Bhutan's landscape ranges from subtropical plains in the south to the Sub-alpine Himalayan heights in the north, with some peaks exceeding 7,000 metres (23,000 ft). The state religion is Vajrayana Buddhism, and the population of 691,141 is predominantly Buddhist, with Hinduism being the second-largest religion. The capital and largest city is Thimphu. After centuries of direct monarchic rule, the King voluntarily abdicated himself for his son and devolved power to the people. Bhutan held its first democratic elections in March 2008 and Druk Phumtshum Tshogpa (Peace and Prosperous Party) won by a landslide margin (winning 45 out of the 47 seats). Among other international associations, Bhutan is a member of the United Nations and the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) and hosted the Sixteenth SAARC summit in April 2010. The total area of the country is currently 38,816 square kilometres (14,987 sq mi).