Bhutan used to be one of the most isolated countries in the world. Developments including direct international flights, the Internet, mobile phone networks, and cable television have increasingly modernized the urban areas of the country. Bhutan balanced modernization with its ancient culture and traditions under the guiding philosophy of Gross National Happiness (GNH). Fervent protection of the environment has been a top priority. The government takes great measures to preserve the nation's traditional culture, identity and the environment. In 2006, Business Week magazine rated Bhutan the happiest country in Asia and the eighth-happiest in the world, citing a global survey conducted by the University of Leicester in 2006 called the "World Map of Happiness."
Thangtong Gyalpo (Tibetan: ཐང་སྟོང་རྒྱལ་པོ་, Wylie: thang stong rgyal po) (1385–1464 or 1361–1485) also known as Drubthob Chakzampa (lcags zam pa) and Tsundru Zangpo (brtson 'grus bzang po) was a great Buddhist adept, a yogi, physician, blacksmith, architect, and a pioneering civil engineer.