Bhutan Food Markets

August 24, 2011

bhutan food market

We found the food markets fascinating in Bhutan. This photo is of a small one in the central part of the country, but we also loved the huge market in Thimpu and every small one we explored. There were many things we had never seen before and I will write a detailed report later.

When most people think of going to Bhutan they think of the Tiger's Nest, the happiest place on earth, nomads, Bhutan Buddhism or a special vacation in this specacular, rarely seen and pristine country.

People don't tend to go to Bhutan for Bhutanese cuisine or the markets, but we really enjoyed both. One learns much about a people through their food and markets. They love hot and spicy food and the national dish is called Ema Datshi which is cheese and chilis. I especially enjoyed the organically grown buckwheat pancakes, the organic potatoes and the many soups.

Do you like visiting markets when you travel?  Whether they are big markets like in San Sebastian, fish markets like trying whale in Norway, or a little market in the Cotswold country side in England, or the south of France or even picking our own in Italy...we are always up for food markets.

Food markets make for great fodder in a world school life, don't you think?


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Go to the market every day.

Jeanne @soultravelers3

Marlana- It is such a part of life in Asia and so much of the world, isn't it? The markets are one of the things I miss in the US, although I must admit we have a fabulous farmers market in our hometown of Santa Cruz once a week that I am looking for to visiting again soon! ;)

Katrina Mauro

I especially love to visit markets when I travel!! I go almost everywhere in search of traditional foods I've never tried or seen before, as well as in search of interesting local crafts - so markets are right up my alley, all around! The vibrancy of color and texture, along with new smells (good and bad) of a market are usually some of my most vivid memories from my journeys!


Thanks for this post. I am reading books from Tibet, Nepal and Bhutan right now. Very interesting region.

Jeanne @soultravelers3

Katrina - I couldn't agree with you more! We love markets too and visit them where ever we go. The ones in Bhutan are quite fascinating with lots of things we had never seen before!

Jeanne @soultravelers3

Thanks Britt! I just read a book about Bhutan as well and it's true this is a fascinating area. Out of the three, Bhutan is the only one which remained isolated until very recently. My God they didn't even have a road through the country until the 60's and not tourists at all until the late 70's nor no TV or internet until recently.

One of the most beautiful, unique and pristine countries that we have visited.

There is a reason they call it the last Shangri-la. You will love it!

Murray Gunn

I went to the Thimphu markets every week for 2 years and still found them fascinating. The smallest quantity of chillies you can buy is 500g - but that's only a few days worth for a typical Bhutanese family.

Darleen Saunders

Markets are always on our list of places to visit when we travel. They are representative of not only the food they eat, but of what the culture is like as well. It is here that you can see daily life. It's also a peek into the language and trade with other countries. Never miss a market trip while traveling!

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