Phuentsholing is the border town in Southern Bhutan. It shares the border with Indian town Jaigaon. The town gains its prominence as a mercantile hub. It primarily functions as a center where the Indians and Bhutanese do business. The cross border trade contributes to the thriving local economy. The town has modern architecture devoid of Dzongs like the rest of Bhutan. It offers hygienic, pleasant and secure environs. So, before packing your bags for a sightseeing trip, have a glimpse on the 18 most interesting facts that you probably don’t know about Phuentsholing.
1. The only Gateway to Bhutan:
Phuentsholing is the only way to enter into Bhutan through roadway or a drive. It is a point of entrance for the travelers coming by bus or cab from various destinations.
2. Center for obtaining permits:
Phuentsholing Immigration office issues permits. For which they accept forms in the morning and dispenses permits post lunch break. A visitor is denied entry beyond the check post without a permit.
3. The point of origin for Bhutan’s main Highway:
One can see the road to Thimphu twisting up the hillside from almost everywhere in the city. The Kingdom’s main highway begins in Phuentsholing and covers some 557 km to Tarshigang in the east.
4. Second largest city in Bhutan:
\After Thimphu, the capital of the country, Phuentsholing follows as the second largest city of Bhutan. Situated in Chukha district, it accommodates the population of 60,400 dwellers.
5. The distance between the two largest cities:
The total straight distance between Phuentsholing and Thimphu is 76 km. the miles based distance from Phuentsholing to Thimphu is 47.8 miles. If you travel at a constant speed of 50 km per hour, you can reach Thimphu in 1.54 hours.
6. Siliguri, the nearest big Indian city:
Siliguri is the nearest large Indian city to Phuentsholing. The distance between the two is 175 km. It will take about 6 hours drive to reach Siliguri from Phuentsholing or vice-versa.
7. The distance between New Jalpaiguri to Phuentsholing:
It will take around 2 hours if you travel from New Jalpaiguri to Phuentsholing bus stop at a speed of 50 km per hour. The distance between the two places is 66.5 miles.
8. Crocodile breeding center:
With a wide species of crocodiles and alligators, Amo Chuu Crocodile Breeding Center is certainly one of the most popular places to see Phuentsholing. It provides an excellent opportunity to get close to these dangerous creatures in actual life.
9. The Gate of partition:
Bhutan Gate, the main Gateway for entry from India separates the Indian Territory Jaigaon from the Bhutanese realm Phuentsholing. Representing the ancient Bhutanese architecture, Bhutan Gate is the most photographed attractions in Phuentsholing.
10. Karbandi Monastery:
Established in 1967, Karbandi Monastery is nestled at a height of 400 meters. It accommodates the large statues of Guru Rinpoche and Shakyamuni Buddha. The flourishing garden outside the monastery provides a breathtaking view of the plains of Bengal and Phuentsholing town.
11. Zangto Pelri Lhakhang:
With eight life sized idols of different manifestations of the esteemed Guru, Zangto Pelri Lhakhang is abode to the replica of Guru Rinpoche. You shouldn’t miss the artistic wonders like the paintings of Buddha, statues of Bodhisattvas and Avalokiteshvara during your visit.
12. Top notch nightlife in Phuentsholing:
While the sun goes off to sleep, everyone comes together to have a taste of vigorous and thrilling Phuentsholing nightlife. One can enjoy a drink or two at bars with snacks. Enjoy the night of delightful dancing in one of the discos of Phuentsholing
13. Chukha Hydropower project:
Chukha Hydropower project is one of the major Phuentsholing sightseeing attractions. Constructed under the Indo-Bhutan Treaty under Indian aid, Chukha Hydel is Bhutan’s very first mega power project. It is built on the banks of the sustained Wang Chuu River.
14. Best time to explore Phuentsholing:
This small hamlet in the foothills of the Himalayas mostly remains cold. The best time to visit Phuentsholing would be in the months of March to May. During this time the temperature remains moderate. It would be wise to avoid the severely chilly winters and the blistering heat of summer.
15. The Direct Bus Services from Kolkata:
The Bhutan Government runs a direct bus service from Kolkata to Phuentsholing. The buses depart from the bus station at 7 pm on Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday. The return trip begins at Phuentsholing office of Bhutan Post at 3 pm on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday respectively.
16. Phuentsholing weather:
Phuentsholing experiences variation in weather condition according to the month and seasons. During winters, Phuentsholing freezes under the spell of the severely cold winters. In summer, the direct rays of the sun result in fiery temperatures. The end of winter marks the beginning of pleasant weather conditions.
17. Places to halt in Phuentsholing:
Being the flourishing commercial center Phuentsholing has developed to sustain the need of every traveler. Phuentsholing hotel ensures the secure host to the huge influx of the travelers. Amid the well-maintained environment, the hotel ranges from budget to mid-range.
18. Access to Phuentsholing:
Phuentsholing can be reachable from Siliguri by drive through Jaigaon. The Bhutan Government buses depart from Siliguri Bus Station on Hill Cart Road at 7:30 am and 1:30 pm every day. The nearest station to Phuentsholing is Hasimara, which is roughly 30 minutes drive. New Jalpaiguri Station in Siliguri is a four-hour journey. It offers a greater number of services and is the most approved option for travelers traveling to Bhutan by railways.
So, above are the facts concerning Phuentsholing. I believe this will be advantageous for your next trip to Bhutan. Have a happy exploration.