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Is Bhutan too costly? Consider exploring the metaverse

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Bhutan Too Expensive? Try The Metaverse

The majestic landscapes and temples of the Himalayan kingdom of Bhutan have long been a desired destination for many travellers. However, the country now aims to highlight its technological prowess.

Bhutanverse is a platform designed to introduce people to the country and showcase its technology sector. This is not the first time that Bhutan has emphasized digital development, with past efforts including plans for an information technology park and an abandoned $US1bn ($1.52bn) “education city” project.

The government’s investment arm, Druk Holdings & Investments, has been actively working to enhance Bhutan’s digital reputation. Collaborating with Nasdaq-listed Bitdeer, they raised $US500m last year to establish sustainable bitcoin mining operations. Despite only introducing television in the late 1990s, Bhutan now boasts nearly 100% mobile phone coverage and aims to attract more developers through Bhutanverse.

Ujjwal Deep Daha, CEO of DHI, expressed that Bhutan is approaching the metaverse not just as a tourism opportunity but as a platform for diverse innovation. The country seeks investment aligned with its values of preserving the environment, tradition, and culture, all within the context of the Gross National Happiness Index.

Since welcoming tourists in 1974, Bhutan has focused on “high value, low volume” tourism to protect its natural beauty and unique culture. Operating on a Gross National Happiness Index to measure citizen well-being, Bhutan charges tourists a daily fee of $US100. Bhutanverse provides a more accessible and cost-effective way for people to experience the country without physically traveling there.

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