You may not normally think of Bangladesh as a likely destination to include in your travels. However, despite the fact of being known as an area prone to floods and being a poor nation, if you are up for an adventure and feel like exploring a beautiful and welcoming country this could be one of the most fascinating places you could ever visit. Here is a guide to one of the least visited countries in South Asia:
Bangladesh has over 8,000km of navigable waterways. You may take a trip aboard the old paddle wheel cruiser known as The Rocket where Dhaka to Khulna is a popular route. You can also opt for Sundarbans tiger trip which is by boat, or you can just go and negotiate a trip on the river with a boat hand and enjoy the scenery as you pass by.
The Royal Bengal Tiger
Bangladesh is home to The Sundarbans National Park, the largest mangrove swamp. Although extremely difficult to access, this region is home to the largest single population of tigers found anywhere in the world. About 500 Royal Bengal Tigers roam the Sundarbans (that’s about 10% of the world’s wild tigers). Boarding a boat to go in search of them is one of the country’s undisputed number one tourist attractions. For a true adventure and to increase your chances of seeing a tiger, book a three or four day boat tour from Khulna.
Sylhet is Bangladesh’s tea-growing region and a visit to Bangladesh’s prime tea-growing area is a must do. One of the most popular places to use as a base for your tealeaf explorations is Srimangal.
Hiking in the Chittagong Hills
Although most of Bangladesh appears flatter than a pancake, few realize that the country boasts mountains higher than Scotland. The Chittagong Hill Tracts in the southeast section of the country is hilly and forested and is home to a large number of Bangladesh’s minority tribal groups. That area is a bit troubled and the authorities are a bit reluctant to let tourist explore the area. As a result, you have to obtain a permit and you are not allowed in without a guide or police escort.
There are cycle rickshaws in many areas of the world, especially south Asia. However, Bangladesh is arguably more colorful and more integral to everyday life than in any other place on earth. The designs are an art form and you may even take home painted panels of rickshaws as souvenirs. Almost every town and city has a huge fleet and it is pretty much impossible to avoid traveling on one.
Fun Facts On Bangladesh
- National Animal: Royal Bengal Tiger
- National Fruit: Jackfruit.
- National Sport: Kabaddi
Before you go
Read: “The Good Muslim”, by Tahmima Anam
Watch: “The Clay Bird” by Tareque Masud
Photo: Richard I’Anson / Lonely Planet Photographer