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The 50 Things You Must Do in Asia

By Hanya Yanagihara - 2013-07-23T16:27:10Z

Photograph by Thomas Kokta/Getty Images

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Drive Through the Countryside: Bhutan

What you'll notice first about Bhutan is its splendid beauty and the remarkable lack of development. The countryside unfolds as a series of lush pleats of green. The hillsides (the country is largely mountainous) are thick with spruce and blue fir, and wild magnolia trees and rhododendron bushes that have grown to treelike proportions punctuate the roadway. The second thing you’ll notice is the emptiness. Cars purr down roads briskly, and there’s no honking. Indeed, the roads are so quiet you can hear the breeze and birdsong as you go. By the way, the tales of Bhutan’s harrowing roads are overblown. Yes, they’re narrow and twisty and full of corkscrews, but only the most anxious will feel unsafe.

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