Read Buttertea at Sunrise: A Year in the Bhutan Himalaya by Britta Das Online


Often seen as a magical paradise at the end of the world, Bhutan is inaccessible to most travellers. Set against the dramatic scenery of the Himalaya, this beguiling memoir recalls hardships and happiness in a land almost untouched by the West. When Britta Das goes to work as a physiotherapist in a remote village hospital, her good intentions are put to the test amid monsoOften seen as a magical paradise at the end of the world, Bhutan is inaccessible to most travellers. Set against the dramatic scenery of the Himalaya, this beguiling memoir recalls hardships and happiness in a land almost untouched by the West. When Britta Das goes to work as a physiotherapist in a remote village hospital, her good intentions are put to the test amid monsoons, fleas, and startling conditions. But as she visits homes in the mountains and learns the mysteries of Tantric Buddhism, the country captivates her very soul. Gaining insights into the traditions of the mystical kingdom, Britta makes friends, falls in love, and battles illness. Throughout it all, as she writes, she worries about the "destructive nearness of technology" and fears that Bhutan’s charm and innocence may soon be lost. Still, Bhutan has endured for centuries, and there is no denying that the country has transformed her life forever....

Title : Buttertea at Sunrise: A Year in the Bhutan Himalaya
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9781550026801
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 224 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Buttertea at Sunrise: A Year in the Bhutan Himalaya Reviews

  • Vishnupriya Sharma
    2019-03-14 18:01

    I picked this book up as I was looking for some writing on Bhutan culture and life in Bhutan. It provides a whole lot more than that. Britta has written a very candid experience of hers. In addition to the life and culture in Bhutan, there are many stories layered very beautifully. There is the author-doctor who is striving for the health of the people in Bhutan, there is the romantic journey in flashes, then there is the intensity of the monks and the Buddhists or even the struggles of a Canadian in Bhutan.It is not a heavy reading, at times, I found it boring too when the description of the scenery got verbose. There is a tinge of sentimentalism that the author was not watchful of when she was writing I presume.The story flows quite naturally and freely without any hiccups one has to get adjusted to.I'm glad I read this book. If you like travel, are interested in various cultures, this is a good book to read. If you've been to Bhutan, you may not enjoy this book, but, if you haven't, there are chances that you'll love this.

  • Bookguide
    2019-02-25 17:08

    In Dutch: Koninkrijk in de wolken: mijn jaar in Bhutan.Interessant verhaal over een Duits-Canadese fysiotherapeute die een jaar in een ziekenhuis in een kleine stad in het oosten van Bhutan doorbrengt. Ze observeert veel over de levenswijze van de mensen, en doet haar best de taal te leren en de gewoontes en tradities van de lokale bevolking te respecteren. Ze ontmoet daar een sympathieke arts uit India, Bikal, die beter de taal spreekt dan zij, en samen gaan ze op bezoek bij patiënten en de familie van haar collega, Pema. Ze bouwt een hechte relatie met twee van de jongste patiënten in het ziekenhuis op, en helpt ze op weg naar een onafhankelijk leven.Ik merk dat ik dit soort reisboek veel interessanter vindt dan boeken die meer over het reizen zelf gaan. Hier krijg je echt inzicht in het leven, het Boeddistisch geloof en de tradities van de mensen, en ook hoe het bedreigt wordt door invloeden van buitenaf. Op het moment dat het boek geschreven werd, was er nog geen televisie in Bhutan, behalve films uit India; inmiddels is dat veranderd, en er komen steeds meer wegen. Ik had wel het idee dat Britta meer had kunnen leren over waarom mensen bepaalde dingen deed, en hoe ze over ziekzijn dachten; er was natuurlijk een taalbarriere, maar ik had vaak het gevoel dat Britta haar eigen interpretatie van de motieven van andere mensen had, zonder te vragen of ze gelijk had. Nog één opmerking: de vertaler gebruikt steeds het woord 'vertwijfeld', en ik twijfel of dat elke keer de goede vertaling was; irritant.

  • Jane E
    2019-02-27 18:54

    Not high literature and not written with great or even good understanding of Buddhism or many other things but a reasonable attempt to write about her year in Bhutan from a personal perspective. Other reviewers have complained that the book didn't have enough about Bhutan but it isn't meant to be a travelogue. It is a memoir of time spent in an unusual and difficult place that is perhaps a little too sanitized but good enough to be worth picking up if nothing better comes to hand. My only real complaint is not finding out what became of Spud when she headed off out of the country. I guess she left him/her behind without a second thought. (Purchased at Education Book House, Kathmandu, Nepal)

  • Sanjukta
    2019-02-23 17:20

    While the first half of the book got a little monotonous, the second half of the book was as captivating as it could get. Not just could I identify with the thoughts and emotions of the stories, the simplicity of the text resonated to a great extent.

  • Jane Spencer
    2019-03-14 18:56

    There is always something to gain from a book, and in this case, I got a "feel" for remote Eastern Bhutan, but this book is more about Britta Das than Bhutan. Her story is interesting, and I'm always respectful of a person who adapts to a foreign way of life with few resources, but it definitely left me wanting. The book was published in 2007, though the story unfolded years prior, so I wonder how much has changed in eastern Bhutan since her experience. One thing is for sure, I won't travel to Bhutan during the monsoons. Jamie Zeppa's book, Beyond the Sky and the Earth (2000) seems like a natural comparison to make. Britta Das went to Bhutan as a physiotherapist and ended up marrying an Indian doctor working there. Jamie Zeppa went to Bhutan to teach and ended up marrying a local. Both are Canadian authors. I plan to re-read Zeppa's book.

  • Rebecca
    2019-03-19 14:10

    This one falls into the category of "books-that-are-ostensibly-about-women doing-awesome-things-but-that-are-actually-about-a-very-typical-romance." I cannot fathom how you could spend a year in Bhutan - which is one of the most fascinating and forbidden regions on the planet - and write primarily about yourself. It's a pity, because when she does write about Bhutan, some of it is pretty good, and definitely evocative of the feeling of being there, but when she's writing badly, it's sentimental and not too convincing. In fact, I'm not even going to waste my time writing more about it. There must be better books about Bhutan out there. I'm off to find them.

  • Connie Dyer
    2019-02-24 18:21

    Most travel books are written by professional writers, journalists or scholars who like to travel. Every once in a while an ordinary person simply tells the story of their stay in a world very different from their own because it seems worth sharing. This is one of those books. Just a window into an otherwise private person's life upended and transformed by going to live and work in a remote Bhutanese village. I couldn't put it down! And a month later i had arranged to spend a substantial chunk of change for an extended trip to Bhutan so I could learn more.

  • Judith
    2019-02-22 22:03

    Probably more a 3.5. I enjoyed this book but I didn't think it was as well written as the last two books I read on Bhutan. It was set primarily in one village where the other two books gave a broader description of the whole country of Bhutan. Reading these books has increased my enthusiasm for our trip in October.

  • Jill Lucas
    2019-02-23 14:23

    This memoir of the authors single year in Bhutan was charming, if a bit disappointing. I don't doubt that the experience of living in and experiencing Bhutan was so unique that she wanted to share it, so wrote about it. For that reason alone, I applaud her, but I'm not a fan of her writing style. That said, what a cool adventure :) Bhutan is on my list of places to go.

  • Krishna Sruthi Srivalsan
    2019-03-07 14:02

    This could have been such a good book if only it hadn't been all about 'I, me, myself'. Thought I was settling to read an interesting account of life in Bhutan; turned out to be an insipid romance. Meh.

  • Sharon
    2019-03-01 14:05

    A very special book. A riveting story beautifully told. The story takes place in a small Irish town and is told from the point of view of several of the townspeople. The way of telling the story reminded me of Olive Kitteridge.

  • Cynthia
    2019-03-19 14:07

    I enjoyed Buttertea at Sunrise and was disappointed when I reached the last page... as that I did not want it to end. Now I am including Bhutan on my long list of places I want to visit... Darn that wanderlust I have.

  • K
    2019-03-07 17:15

    I have to say, I wasn't overly fond of this book. It really wasn't a travelogue as such and I found that it gave no real sense of the country. It also verged off into sentimentalism toward the end.

  • Preethi
    2019-03-17 21:12

    If in the past 2 months, I did not feel like getting back to finish reading this book even once , you get the drift, right? Yes, I cannot finish reading this book.The style of writing is lost on me, its a drone, and the plot is plain insipid. And so, marking it as give-up. :)

  • Georgie Mathew
    2019-02-23 22:06

    A bittersweet tale of a physiotherapist finding roots in an ancient Himalayan kingdom. Coming from a foreign land, this is the story of her struggle to find acceptance and love, and her success in finding them. Do visit for some images, which go very well with the book.

  • Nicki
    2019-03-19 13:56

    I picked up this book while we were on holiday in Bhutan and found it charming, but that was probably because I was experiencing many of the same things as the author. Charmingly written and a quick, atmospheric read.

  • Shirin bagchi
    2019-03-01 14:18

    an engaging book on customs, norms of bhutan, a little like seven years in tibet. Worth reading to know the ancient customs of bhutan

  • Satyajit
    2019-03-09 15:22

    The book just brought another thousand reason to me for explore this am all charged up for my bike trip during May......

  • Monica
    2019-03-13 15:09

    I was bored out of my mind with this author's writing style.

  • Dee
    2019-02-25 17:17

    Lovely account of a foreign doctor's year in Bhutan, falling in love with another doctor and with the rustic culture of the country.

  • Suzanna
    2019-02-25 16:23

    I'm completely fascinated by Bhutan and the Himalayas. Highly recommended.

  • Stephanie Jane (Literary Flits)
    2019-03-12 22:14

    I registered a book at!

  • Mona
    2019-03-18 19:53

    Loved reading this book just before traveling to Bhutan.