September 24, 2008

Boutique House: Nillajon Polli

NIlajon Polli prides themselves in promoting the concept of swadeshi movement. They patronise, through their designs, the concept of self reliance and uphold tradition. Although much famed for their work on jamdani, this season they have chosen katan to work on.

Saris in suta katan are range from Tk 3,500 to Tk 20,000, Net katan and tissue katan between Tk 5000-15000, hand embroidered muslin katan starting from Tk 15000. Katan shalwar kamiz are available between Tk 4000-15000.

Men can chose from their selection of jamdani and cotton pajanbi, hand and machine embroidered within Tk 2500.

Boutique House: Aranya

Aranya is pleased to announce its exciting Eid Collection in a range of natural colours, now in-store! Witness the revival of beautiful Jamdani from museum collections abroad, traditional Kantha saris with patterns derived exclusively from traditional Kanthas in new colour palettes and limited edition hand block printed saris, combined with hand designed aanchals in silk with an extensive range of weaves and prints in silk, tussar, crepe and endi cotton blends, and accessories in new prints, weaves, textures and embroideries. Select your own Eid specials while stock lasts.

The past decade has seen innumerable changes in and around Dhaka city, one of them being the sudden upsurge in the number of boutiques and fashion houses mushrooming in every nook and cranny. While most fashion houses drown in a sea of mediocrity, Aranya is a boutique with a difference. Over the years it has created a niche of its own, and have held the patrons in an enchanted rapture.

Aranya's journey started with the objective to revive the traditional skills of Bangladeshi weavers and artisans that were fizzling out with the passing of time. Through extensive use of indigenous raw materials, Aranya has played a role in creating job opportunities for many weavers who were slowly going out of business. Ruby Ghuznavi, Managing Director of Aranya Crafts Ltd, believes that if these indigenous fabrics and other raw materials can be popularised for extensive use by the masses, the employment sector of our economy can be boosted to a great extent.

In this era and age of synthetic and chemical dyes, Aranya has set itself in an altogether different pedestal, with its contribution to the revival of natural dyes through its indefatigable efforts spanning the past 26 years. With in-depth research, a wide palette of 30 colour-fast natural dyes have already been established, which includes different vibrant shades of blue, green, brown, purple, red and more. Contrary to popular myths that natural dyes are dull and faded, Aranya has made available beautiful traditional attires in lively colours suitable for both day wear and evening wear.

Yet another misconception is that natural dyes are not colourfast; they fade away within a few washes. “Any fabric will lose its brightness if you don't handle it the way it is supposed to be handled,” says Ruby Ghuznavi. “Washing with harsh detergents and exposure to scorching sunshine will take away the vibrancy from any fabric. But if you take proper care in washing the clothes a little delicately, natural dyes are just as colourfast as any chemical dye.”

When it comes to fashion, Aranya prefers sticking to classic styles rather than following the trend, because craft development is their main priority. Restoring the pristine beauty of Bangladeshi craft and designs is given more importance than incorporating modern adaptations. Aranya, interestingly, does not have one individual designer. Rather, their designs are products of teamwork, and can come from anyone in the organization.

Recently, Aranya has revived two Jamdanis, one that had been stored in the Victoria and Albert Museum in the UK and the second one acquired from an ardent Japanese collector. “The process was a long one, but well worth it” Ruby Ghuznavi opines. According to her, Jamdanis are too precious to meddle with, so she prefers keeping the designs intact and does not allow any alterations to the original motifs. However, Kantha saris are sometimes given a slight modification in the designs, but the inspirations are always drawn from old designs. “An old Kantha sari may have beautiful kolka motifs in the border, so we sometimes incorporate the kolka motifs in the aanchal to magnify its beauty.”

With its strong commitment to quality maintenance, Aranya has won the hearts of customers home and abroad. Recently, Aranya is working on some orders placed by the Taj Hotel of India. Aranya is considering this to be a breakthrough since it is already interested in exporting its products to the huge market that exists in India. Aranya Crafts Ltd. also has a training centre where interested learners are trained in the crafts of dyeing and weaving. Eager learners have already come from Bhutan, Pakistan and the UK to receive training, while Aranya has arranged training workshops in countries like Malaysia, Turkey, UK and India. Expatriate Bangladeshis are also major buyers of Aranya's products.

The apprehensions that were raised about commercial viability of natural dyes when Aranya started out have gradually been smoothed out. Aranya is now a recognized brand name and has been lauded for its undiminished determination to the revival and maintenance of Bangladeshi crafts. Ruby Ghuznavi, however, shares some of this appreciation with the media. “The continued support that we have received from the media should definitely be recognized. Media has always played a proactive role in reviving the craft sector of our country, and the assistance has been unprecedented.”

Faced against the continuous evolution of the Dhaka fashion scene and the ever-changing tastes of the customers combined with their hunger for uniqueness and variety, Aranya continues to follow its very own trend and wow its customers with its unique creations. Our country, being a reservoir for some of the finest skilled craftsmen and weavers producing delicate weaves of world class quality, holds vast opportunities to experiment with and create work that could only be called sheer genius; and Aranya is doing just that. It continues to be in a league of its own.

Aranya, 60 Kemal Attaturk Avenue, Banani.

(By Wasia Mehnaz Minna, Photo Courtesy: Aranya)
Collected From The Daily Star

Boutique House: Labonno

BOUTIQUE Labonno offers exquisite designs in hand stitch work, machine embroidery, block, sequins and karchupi in their eid collection that is set to dazzle. The entire range covers saris, shalwar kamiz, panjabi, fatua, ornaments and children's wear.

The shalwar kamiz are made in bold cuts and the creative designs of the neckline would add the extra something everyone craves during Eid. Skilful work in karchupi, sequins, mirror, block and hand embroidery sets the designs apart. There has been a predominant use of cotton, to make the prices more attractive to the consumers.

Predominantly in bright colours, the men's wear consisting of panjabi and fatua, speak of youthfulness. Common materials like cotton and khadi have been revamped to create trendy outfits. Besides, exclusive party wear are available in silk and half silk.

Showroom Addresses:

  • 308 Plaza A.R. Mirpur Road, Dhaka and
  • 100/B, Shukrabad, Mirpur Road, Dhaka. Tel# 01819220479

Boutique House: Bangla

Eid and Puja are two of the major religious festivals that are fervently celebrated every year in Bangladesh. This year, the celebrations are to be extra special with Eid-ul-Fitr and Durga Puja almost overlapping, with only a matter of a few days in between.

Which is why, Bangal decides to go that extra mile to make this holiday as unique as possible. This year, their collection constitutes of three-piece kamiz suits, fatuas and panjabi with exclusive handloom textiles from Narsinghdi, Shirajganj and Comilla. Also available is a collection of hand painted panjabi and kamiz.

The three-piece suits are available at Tk 850-Tk 2500; ladies fatua at Tk 300-Tk 1200; men's fatua at Tk 250-Tk 900; panjabi at Tk 4500-Tk 1500 and T-shirts at Tk 150- Tk 500.

Boutique House: Nipun

For long 35 years, Nipun has served the fashionistas of the country. The connoisseurs are aware of Nipun's contribution towards promoting traditional looms and crafts. The collections have not only featured seasonal variations but also highlighted the festivities surrounding our lives.

This Eid, the motifs have been influenced from Europe, Asia and Islamic Arabia. Intricate works of hand block prints, screen print, embroidery, karchupi, and sequins will please the clientele, as they have in the past.


  • 38, free school street kathal bagan, dhaka.
  • 23/a, free school street, panthapath.
  • Husain plaza, H#1, R#12, dhanmondi.
  • Adel plaza, 1/1 mirpur road, lalmatia.
  • 500/a, R#8, dhanmondi.
  • Hair street, wari.
  • West jinda bazar, sylhet.

Boutique House: O2

GOing truly diverse, has launched an exquisite collection of saris along with their regular line of women's and men's wear. Designed by Supratik Sen from India, “Kalpana - the dream evoked collection” is a mixture of classic sophistication and modern uniqueness.

Saris in the “Kalpana” collection have been done in silks, crepes and georgette and fabrics hailing from as far as Surat, India. Ranging in colours from aristocratic reds and blacks to shocking pinks and ultramarine blues, these Saris go against the so hyped up trend of simplicity and make a bold fashion statement with heavy embellishments. The very in fabric when it comes to saris, Muslin has been consciously left out to keep the collection atypical.

The zameen of the saris have been embellished with hand blocked motifs, embroidery and sequins. Some saris have been custom dyed with bright colours to make them stand out in any party. Pieces of Katan have been patched together to create borders alongside zari and lace. Moreover, contrasting colours of velvet used both as strips for borders and as appliqué has given a new dimension to hand embellishments. Jute cotton has also been used as a unique embellishment. Another very in thing used in this collection is netting in the aanchals. Every sari has been hand worked to create a very unique one of a kind piece.

The collection also has some custom-made exclusive shalwar kamiz sets that are set apart in their use of colour combinations and fabrics.

The great thing about the “Kalpana” collection is that no two pieces are alike and even the similar pieces have their own uniqueness differentiated with either colour or embellishment. The amount of work that went into per sari is mind blowing thus justifying the price range for the collection. Prices for the saris range from Tk 3, 500 to Tk 30, 000 and the shalwar kamiz sets are available from Tk 1, 500 to Tk 10, 000.

Apart from his collection Supratik has also collaborated with Goutam Saha for saris and anarkalis. Saris in this collection have used a lot of glass nylon and mixed polyester giving the saris a very fragile, demure and sophisticated look. Anarkalis have been done in soft shades of pinks, blues and greens with detailed embroideries of katan, Brocade and block. The katan and gold embroideries have been antiqued to evoke a sense of romanticism of the bygone era of the days when anarkalis originated.

As usual O2 also has one of the best collections of men's wear out for Eid. Taking traditional designs to the next level are O2's short panjabis and kurtas. They range from plain white with minimal design details in black and white to really gorgeously embroidered and sequined dark coloured ones. Colours range from black, chocolate, deep crimson and blues. Regular panjabis are done in mostly white with some other light colours like pinks and blues.

O2 has also launched their footwear for both men and women. The line of women footwear has already grabbed the attention of the crowd. Range from very traditional straps to modern ones men's line is also not falling behind.

So make sure to go and browse at O2's outlet in Banani, Road 12 and whether you are shopping for yourself or someone else, you will be sure to find something irresistibly unique, different and sophisticated.

Banani, Road 12, Dhaka.

September 22, 2008


Shokh Boutique presents a variety of stylish salwar kameezes with elegant embroidery and gorgeous karchupi work. Fashionable saris with delicate embroidery and beadwork done on a variety of material ranging from silk to chinon to chiffon, are also on display. Apart from these, fotuas, children's wear and men's panjabis are also available within reasonable price ranges. The concept and styling of the dresses are unique as always, while keeping quality and comfort in mind.

Shokh Boutique caters for quality dresses at reasonable prices. You can easily view and have access to some of the latest creations either by visiting the boutique's outlet yourself or by logging into

In Dhanmondi at the junction of Satmasjid Road and Road 9/A.


Designer Farzana Yusuf has managed to creatively balanced surface decoration and beautiful traditional embroidery techniques with an emphasis on modern cuts and silhouettes. The collection includes zardozi mixed with aari and karchopi techniques on saris, shalwaar kamiz, blouses and tops. Hand block printed on khadi shalwar kamiz and saris that are perfect to welcome guests on the morning of Eid day, and also as gifts!

Emprint takes great pride in their attitude towards quality and workmanship of their products.
Emprint has taken a small initiative of working on reviving this traditional technique.


Prices of embroidered saris start from Tk 8500 and shalwar kamiz from Tk 2800, the tops and blouses from Tk 1600 onwards.


The Emprint Eid collection is now available at their outlet, Shop # 17A, Rupayan Golden Age, Gulshan Avenue.


Doorjee has created design in lieu with the customer's taste and sense of styling. The patrons themselves have regarded Doorjee as a boutique with a difference. That is why Doorjee stands for trendy, elegant and unique fashion statements.

The forte of the boutique has been hand block prints, intricate work of karchupi, and detail embroidery on silk, georgette, crepe and cotton. Embellishments in vibrant work with sequins and stones have given their Eid collections a distinct grace this year. A bright colour scheme chosen has been chosen from suave maroon, to elegant black and sizzling red.

The georgette kameez are priced between Tk 2000 Tk 5000, and cotton kamiz between TK 1000 TK 2500.


Doorjee, House # 7, Road # 23/A, Gulshan- 1, (Near Gulshan-1 Post Office).


September 21, 2008

Aziz Super Market

With the Eid and Puja shoppers rushing all over the city to buy something new and fashionable to wear for the festivities, Aziz Super Market provides a unique experience. Devoid of the glitz and glamour of the super malls, the corridors are dark, the shops dimly illuminated. But there is no dearth of activity in this market, once exclusively a den for intellectuals to mingle among the bookstores, now flooded with 17 stores selling clothes. But the uniqueness of this shopping area can be detected through the interesting names of the shops, which are all Bangla names, a refreshing change from English sounding appellations that are often mispelt or used totally inappropriately. Britto, Swadeshi, Pheriwala, Dhak Dhol, Hodai, 1971, Shada Mata, these are some of the names that reflect a growing urge to establish a Bangladeshi identity. Set up mostly by artists from the Fine Arts Institute or Charukala, the clothes sold are reasonably priced and all made in Bangladesh. Fotuas, punjabis, shalwar kamiz, T shirts and saris -all have the trademark of a particular designer and provide mainly middle-class customers, with a much-needed, affordable market for trendy clothes.

- COLLECTED. (The Daily Star, September 19,2008. By ZAHEDUL I KHAN)

September 9, 2008

Tourism In Bangladesh


Tourism is one of the initiators of people's movement, a facilitator for exchange of knowledge, a provider of pleasure, a way to enjoy leisure, and a means to enrich culture. There was a time when only the elite classes had the time and money to enjoy traveling. Especially before fifties of the twentieth century, travel was the privilege of a few rich, affluent and perhaps adventurous people. Things have since changed much. Today the rise in the standard living of people in several developed and developing countries along with the fast technological revolution in transport industry has brought overseas holiday within the rich of middle and even working class. Besides, the emergence of cheap holiday through non-scheduled carriers has brought about a major revolution in the concept of holiday package. Thus, the concept of tourism has now acquired a wider significant among the mass people.


Bangladesh is situated on the north-eastern side of the South Asian subcontinent and is bordered by India in the east, west and north; by a small part of Myanmar in the south-east and by the bay of Bengal in the south. Bangladesh is mainly a flat alluvial plain, criss-crossed by the world's three mighty river systems, namely the Padma, the Jamuna and the Meghna and their innumerable tributaries. The land mass of Bangladesh is home to 120 million people. The hill districts are situated in the eastern fringes of the country reaching an average elevation of 660 meters. The slopes and valleys are covered with virgin forests that are home to numerous flora and fauna. In the south are the Sundarbans, the world's largest mangrove forest and the habitat of the Royal Bengal1iger. The climate of Bangladesh is sub-tropical with a hot and humid summer and a cool and dry winter. Annual rainfall ranges from 160 to 200 cm. The best period to visit Bangladesh is from November to March when a temperature ranges from 13.50 C to 26.50 C.


Tourism in Bangladesh is a slowly developing foreign currency earner. The country has everything to attract international and domestic tourists.
In the northern part, comprising of the Rajshahi division, there are archaeological sites, including the temple city Puthia in Rajshahi; the largest and most ancient archaeological site, Mahasthangarh in Bogra; the single largest Buddhist monastery, Paharpur in Naogaon; the most ornamental Terracota Hindu temple in Bangladesh Kantaji Temple, and many Rajbaris or palaces of old Zamindars.

In the south-western part, mainly the Khulna Division, there is the Sundarbans, the largest mangrove forest of the world with Royal Bengal Tiger and spotted deer. The historically and architecturally important sixty domed mosque in Bagerhat is a notable site.

In the south-eastern part, which is the Chittagong division, there are mainly natural and hilly scenarios along with sandy sea beaches. The most notable beach is the longest unbroken sandy sea beach in the world in Cox's Bazaar.

In the north-eastern part, Sylhet division, there is a green carpet of tea plants on small hillocks. Natural reserved forests are great attractions. Migratory birds in winter, particularly in the Haor areas, are also very attractive in this area.

Nature and categories of tourist attractions in bangladesh

4. Nature and categories of tourist attractions:

Bangladesh is an exotic destination. It is magical tapestry woven with the threads of hope, struggle and love. It has a host of tourist treasures to off to tourists. Bangladesh is a combination of verdant forests, riverine countryside, and long stretches of sub-bathed beaches, fearsome wilds, meandering rivers and venerable shrine. Others include lakes, hills, tribal life, archaeological remains (including historical moments, folklore, and religious and cultural heritage), and much more. The following are some important tourist attractions in Bangladesh.

4.1. Natural Beauty Attractions:

Bangladesh is covered with diversified natural objects, all creating unique scenic beauty throughout. The country is a boon of nature and is gifted with immense natural beauty and diversity. As a land of captivating beauty, Bangladesh has got many natural things to offer to the visitors. These include emerald green villages with exotic rural life, breath taking view of the country-side, beautiful evergreen virgin forests wearing varying colours in different seasons, unspoiled nature with serenade of singing birds, different wild lives in different forests, etc. Besides, colorful forested hill streams of Sylhet and Chittagong areas, the open valleys, sea beaches, panoramic tea gardens in Sylhet region, innumerable rivers, small and big lakes are also important natural beauty elements of the country. Its landscape, emerald green crop fields, colorful countryside, and the plain land throughout the country have made it a uniquely beautiful country in the world. Above all, about 145 million warm-harted people have made the country a unique and fascinating tourist spot in the world.

The beautiful and picturesque Chittagong Hill Tracts have full to scenic appeal for all classes of tourists, local and foreign. The hilly Sylhet beded with its tea gardens is situated at the northwestern part of Bangladesh amidst picturesque secnic tropical forests and innumerable medium sized hill streams. Sylhet is the biggest tea producer zone of Bangladesh. There are more than 150 tea gardens here. The Sylhet Valley has got in tis proud possession the largest three tea gardens, both in area and production, of the world.

The world largest (120 km.) natural unspoiled and unbroken shark free sandy sea beaches of Cox’x Bazar and its adjacent areas should appeal very much to the tourists for natural recreation ins solitude. Cox’s Bazar Sea beach is situated in the backdrop of lush green hills. Another sea beach, Kuakata, which islocally known as the ‘Sagar Kanya’ (daughter of the sea) offers a unique opportunity to see the full view of rising and setting sun in a calm environment. Tourists from western countries like to move and sunbathe in the soft sunshine on the sandy sea beach.

4.2. Adventure Attractions:

Tourists want access to thrilling experience. Wildlife based tourism, described as ‘Safari’ earlier, is now called adventure travel. “Wildlife oriented travel represents a major trend in tourism today. What once was best described as ‘Safari’ now carries labels such as ‘Adventure Travel’ and Ecotour’ a journey to an exotic spot where moder human society has not displaced the indigenous wildlife. Moving in and around Sundarbans and Chittagong Hill districts offer unique and challenging opportunity for adventure tourists. “ Royal Bengal Tiger is one of the star attractions and Bangladesh is one of the few countries where one can find them.

4.3. Eco-Attractions:

The idea of tourism, once centered at Pyramids or Hanging Gardens, has now changed throughout the world and the theme now focuses on the enjoyment and conservation of nature and culture. Eco-tourism means environmentally responsible and culturally sustainable tourism which promotes visit of the tourists to relatively unexplored natural areas with some specific objects of (i) having to total experience through enjoying and studying the scenery, natural plants and wild animals; (ii) resulting in social and economic benefits to the society in general and local community in particula ; and (iii) promoting conservation of natural and cultural features (both present and past) of that society. Bangladesh is blessed with two of the world’s splendid and enchanting ecotourism spots of diverse nature the Sundarbans and the Chittagong Hill Tracts.

The world largest mangrove forest ‘sundarbans’, three hill districts in Chittagong Hill Tracts the tourists’ paradise, and the tea plantations in Sylhet are the heaven place. Innumerable rivers and rivulets, some islands, lakes, forests, wildlives, glorious tribal life and their exotic culture, and the traditional simpel life style of the rurla people are also attractive sight of Bangladesh.All these products are the pride of Bangladesh and have tremendous demand to the eco-tourists of the world.

4.4. Riverside Attractions :

Geographically, Bangladesh is characterized by the mighty Ganges and Jamuna rivers and their myriad tributaries which produce a remarkable 5,222 kilometers of navigable waterways, a distance which almost doubles during the monsoon season. Nature has gifted Bangladesh with this vast reverine experience. Thousand of rivers and rivulets flowing form the north to the south and watering the land throughout have crisscrossed the country. BPC and some private tour operators have also introduced river cruise services to enable the tourists to discover the riverine-beauty.

4.5. Historical and Heritage Attractions:

Bangladesh is a newly born state in an ancient land full of historical and heritage attractions. During its more than two thousand years of eventful history, many illustrious Kings and Sultans have ruled and disappeared and have left their marks in the shape of magnificent cities as well as monuments throughout the country . The country’s historical legacy is composed of various stands, including Islamic, Hindu, Buddhist and British. These historical places, archaeological sites, monuments, and similar other objects are available throughout the country to symbol and present out tradition and civilization.

Old ancient Buddhist relics at Paharput, Mahasthangarh, and Mainamati as part of mankind’s indivisible heritage. The Buddhist settlements of the 8th to 12 the century A.D. known as Mainamati Lalmai range situated in the center of the district of comilla. Salban Vihar, Kotila Mura, Charpatra Mura are the main features of the area.

The capital city Dhaka predominantly was a city of the Mughals. In hundred years of their vigorous rule successive Governors and Princely Viceroys who ruled the province, adorned it with many noble monuments in the shape of magnificent palaces, mosques, tombs, fortifications and ‘katras’ often surrounded with beautifully laid otu gardens and vavilions.

4.6. Cultural Attractions:

Bangladesh is heir to a rich cultural legacy and traditions. It has a rich heritage of Daces, arts and music featuring both traditional Bengali artists and various hill tribes. A variety of music viz- Classical, folk & modern; dances viz- classical, tribal & middle eastern traits, films viz- shor/long, dramas viz- open air & indoor stage have got a deep foundation in Bangladesh and are considered as parts of the people’s life. BPC sometimes, arranges live cultural shows in its cruise vessels.

4.7. Human Attractions:

The most attractive cultural object of a country is its people. A true tourist wants to see and study all about the people of a country. There are about 145 million people in Bangladesh having diversified traditions, customs, beliefs, feelings, and ways of living. The rural people live on different occupations including farmers, peasants, cottage industry holders, fishermen, carpenters, blacksmiths, boatmen, washer men, barbers, etc. They are very social and pious and lead a very simple life.

The unique custom and costumes of tribal families indicate the ancient traditions and cultural heritage. Their traditions, customs, costumes and cultural heritages are important fascinating objects of pleasure for tourists.

The mixture of diverse race of the pre Aryan racial including primitive tribes viz- the Kols, the Sabaras, the Pulindars, the Hadi, the Dom, the Chandala and others. The Proto-Austroloid, the Dravidians, the Mongoloids viz- Chakmas and others represents distinctive racial features for Bangladesh.

4.8. Recreational Attractions:

Tourism activities consists of some Ss which stands for sea, sands, snow, sun, scenery, sight seeing shopping, sex, and show. Bangladesh has got most of the Ss excepting snow and sex. Here, sex is one of the important Ss. After roaming, visiting, seeing, and swimming, tourists move towards hotels to enjoy grand hospitality and take rest. Here tourists like to through his exhausted body on the milky white bed soft and inviting for the warmth of a woman giving him pleasure. Arrangement of such pleasure is not allowed. Of course, some hotels in the destination areas arrange such nightlife facilities in a very restricted and secret manner and behind the screen.

4.9. Religious Attractions:

The religious beliefs of the Muslims, Hindus, Buddhists, Christians, Animists and other tribal people in Bangladesh have shaped their way of life and can present a variety of customs, traditions and culture for tourists.

4.10. Fair and Festival Attractions:

Fairs and festivals are the part and parcel in the life of our people in Bangladesh. These are the principal means of enjoying pleasure, getting companion of others, and exchanging greetings with each other.

September 8, 2008

Place of tourist attractions in bangladesh


5.1. Dhaka:
The capital of Bangladesh is Dhaka with its exciting history and rich culture, known the world over as the city of mosques and muslin; it has attracted travelers from far and nearer throughout in all the ages. It has a history dating back to earliest time. But the exact date of its foundation is not known. However, according to recorded history it was founded in 1608 A.D. as the seat of the imperial Mughal Viceroy of Bengal. Dhaka as the capital of Bangladesh has grown into a busy city of about seven million people with an area of about 815 sq. km. Having a happy blending of old and new architectural trends, Dhaka has been developing fast as a modern city and is throbbing with activities in all spheres of life. It is the centre of industrial commercial, cultural, educational and political activities for Bangladesh. At Tongi, Tejgaon, Demra, Pagla, kanchpur, the industrial establishments turn - out daily necessities. Motijheel is the main commercial area of the city. Dhaka's major waterfront Sadarghat is on the bank of the river Buriganga and is crowded with all kinds of river craft, batches, country boats, motor launches, paddle-steamers, fishermen's boats all bustling with activity. Colourful rickshaws (tricycle) on the city streets are common attractions for the visitors.

Some of the outstanding tourist attractions of Dhaka are:

Seven domed Mosque (17th century), Rose Garden (Rajbari), Atia Mosque (Mugal Element), Baitul Mukarram National Mosque, Star Mosque (18th century).

Hindu Temples:
Dhakashwari Temple (11th Century), Ramkrishna Mission.

Churches :
Armenian Church (1781). St. Mary's Cathedral at Ramna, Church of Bangladesh or former St Thomas Cathedral Church (1677) at Tejgaon.

Lalbagh Fort :
It was built in 1687 A.D., by Prince Mohammad Azam, son of Mughal emperor Aurangazeb. The fort was the scene of bloody battle during the first war of independence (1857) when 260 sepoys stationed here backed by the people revolted against British forces. Outstanding among the monuments of the Lalbagh Fort are the tomb of Pari Bibi (Fairy lady), Lalbagh Mosque, audience hall and Hammam of Nawan Shaista Khan now housing a museum.

1857 Memorial (Bhahudar Shah Park):
Built to commemorate the martyrs of the first liberation war (1857 - 59) against British rule. It was here that the revolting sepoys and their civil compatriots were publicly hanged.

Ahsan Manzil Museum:
On the bank of river Buriganga in Dhaka the pink majestic Ahsan Manzil has been renovated and turned into a museum recently. It is an example of the nations rich cultural heritage. It was the home of the Nawab of Dhaka and a silent spectator to many events. Today's renovated Ahsan Manzil is a monument of immense historical beauty. It has 31 rooms with a huge dome atop which can be seen from miles around. It now has 23 galleries in 31 rooms displaying portraits, furniture and household articles and utensils used by the Nawab.

Curzon Hall:
Beautiful architectural building named after Lord Curzon. It now houses the Science Faculty of Dhaka University. Old High Court Building: Originally built as the residence of the British Governor. It illustrates a happy blend of European and Mughal architecture.

Dhaka Zoo:
Popularly known as Mirpur Zoo. Colourful and attractive collections of different local and foreign species of animals and birds including the majestic Royal Bengal Tiger are available here.

National Museum:
Centrally located, the museum contains a large number of interesting collections including sculptures and paintings of the Hindu, Buddhist and Muslim periods.

Botanical Garden:
Built on an area of 205 acres of land at Mirpur and adjacent to Dhaka zoo. One can have a look at the zoo and the botanical garden in one trip.

National Park:
Situated at Rejendrapur, 40km. north of Dhaka city. This is a vast (1,600 acres), national recreational forest with facilities for picnic & rowing etc.

Central Shahid Minar:
Symbol of Bangladesh nationalism. This monument was built to commemorate the martyrs of the historic Language Movement of 1952. Hundred and thousands of people with floral wreaths & bouquet gather on 21 February every year to pay respect in a solemn atmosphere. Celebrations begin at zero hour of midnight.

Buddhist Monastery:
Kamalapur Buddhist Monastry. National Poet's Graveyard: Revalutionary poet Kazi Nazrul Islam diend on the 26 th August 1978 and was buried here. The graveyard is adjacent to the Dhaka University.

Suhrawardy Uddyan (Garden):
Popular Park. The oath for independence of Bangladesh was taken here on the 7th March 1971. The place is famous for its lush verdure and gentle breezes.

Mausoleum of National Leaders:
Location at the south western corner of Suhrawardy Uddyan, it is the eternal resting place of three great national leaders, Shree - Bangla A.K. Fazlul Haque, Hossain Shahid Suhrawardy and Khawja Nazimmuddin.

Banga Bhaban:
The official residence of the President, located in the city. One can have a outside view.

Baldha Garden:
It has a rare collection of botanical plants and flowers. Ramna Green: A vast stretch of green garden surrounded by a serpentine lake near the Sheraton Hotel.

National Assembly:
Jatiya Sangsad Bhaban (Parliament House) at Shere e Bengla Nagar, designed by the famous architect Louis, Kahn, has distinctive architectural features. It may be called an architectural wonder of this region.

Science Museum:
Located at Agargaon, the Museum is a modern learning centre related to the latest scientific discoveries.

National Memorial:
Located at Savar, 35 km. from Dhaka city. The memorial designed by architect Moinul Hossain, sacred memory of the millions of unknown martyrs of the 1971 war of liberation.

About 29 km. from Dhaka. Sonargaon is one of the oldest capital of Bengal. A Folk Art and Crafts Museum has been established here.

Other attractions in and around Dhaka include the institute of Arts and Crafts with its representative collection of folk art and paintings, handicraft shops, Aparajeya Bangla monument, picnic spots at Chandra and Salna, industrial estates of Tongi, Narayanganj Demra, Tejgaon. Cruising by country boat in the nearby river or a visit to a village to see jute cultivation, weaving and pottery making. Last but not least travel by a horse driven cart or rickshaw along busy Dhaka streets is a rewarding experience.


5.2 Gateway To The Bay Of Bengal:

With a picturesque hinterland of large hill forests and lakes. Chittagong is a good vacation spot. It is the second largest city of Bangladesh and a busy of Bangladesh and a busy international sea port. Its green hills and forests, broad sandy beaches and fine cool climate always attract holiday makers. It combines the hump of a restless seaport with the pleasure of a charming hill town with its undulating topography. Chittagong is the country's chief port and is the main site for the establishment of heavy, medium and light industries. Bangladesh's only steel mill and oil refinery are also located here. Chittagong is connected with Dhaka by rail, road, air and water. It is also connected with Cox's Bazar and Calcutta by Air.

Places of Interest:

5.2.1. Sharine of Byazid Bostami:
This holy shrine attracts a large number of visitors and pilgrims. At its base there is a large tank with several hundred tortoises floating in the water.

5.2.2. World War II Cemetery
In this well preserved cemetery at a quiet and picturesque place lie buried over 700 soldiers from Commonwealth countries and Japan.

5.2.3. Foy's Lake
Set amidst panoramic surroundings, this ideal sport for outings and picnics is thronged by thousands of visitors.

5.2.4. Ethnological Museum
A unique treasure house of variety of tribal culture and heritage of Bangladesh.

5.2.5. Court Building
Situated on the Fairy Hill, this building commands a magnificent bird's eye view of Chittagong city particularly at night. Day long attractive sightseeing is organized in Chittagong by TRAVEL BANGLADESH (TRAVELBD) during tourist season.

5.2.6. Patenga Beach
Patenga is the sandy beach at the meeting place of the roaring sea and the river Karnaphuli.

5.2.7. Sitakund
About 40 km from Chittagong. This is famous for the Chandranath Hinduy Temple and the Buddist Temple. There is a hot water spring 5 km to the north of Sitakund. Other important places of interest include Shrine of Shah Amanat, Shahi Jame Mosque, Chandanpura Mosque, Portuguese Arsenal Port Area, Marine Academy, Biponi Bitan (New Market) and Government Circuit House built during British days.

5.2.8. Cox’s Bazar
The tourist capital Miles of golden sands, towering cliffs, surfing waves, rare conch shells, colourful pagodas, Buddhist temples and tribes, delightful sea food this is Cox's Bazar, the tourist capital of Bangladesh. Having the world's longest unbroken (120 km) beach sloping gently down to the blue waters of the Bay of Bengal against the picturesque background of a chain of hills covered with deep green forests, Cox's Bazar is one of the most attractive tourist spots in the world. The beach is good for bathing, sun bathing and swimming. The breath taking beauty of the sun setting behind the waves of the sea is captivating. Attractive local variety of cigars and handloom products of the Rakhyne tribal families are good buys. Their unique customs and costumes attract visitors. Located at a distance of 152 km. south of Chittagong, Cox's Bazar is connected both by air and road from Dhaka and Chittagong. Visits to the fascinating picnic spot at Himchair, Teknaf, southern most tip of Bangladesh, Buddist temple at Ramu and nearby islands of Sonadia, St. Martin and Moheskhali are memorable experience of a life time. Government has taken initiatives to develop Sonadia as an exclusive beach resort.

5.2.9. Hill Tracts Districts
Hill Tracts Districts - world of panoramic beauty The hill Tracts Districts with its perenial forest, thrilling drives through hills and dales, emerald blue water of Kaptai lake, colourful tribal life and culture, attractive handicrafts and artisans beackons you to a world of panoramic beauty mother nature has so lavishly unfolded. Greater Hill Tracts is dividend into three districts, namely Rangamati, Khagrachari and Bandarban each one equally unique in its attractions.

Rangamati - Kaptai

5.3. Rangamati - The Heart of The Lake District:

From Chittagong a 77 km. road amidt green fields and winding hills will take you to Rangamati, the headquarters of Rangamati Hill District which is a wonderful repository of scenic splendours with flora and fauna of varied descriptions. The township is located on the western bank of the Kaptai lake. Rangamati is a favourite holiday resort because of its beautiful landscape, scenic beauty, lake, colourful tribes (Chakma, Marma etc.) its flora and fauna, tribal museum, hanging bridge, homespun textile products, ivory jewellery and the tribal men and women who fashion them. For tourists the attractions of Rangamati are numerous, tribal life, fishing, speed boat cruising, water skiing, hiking, bathing or merely enjoying nature as it is. Bangladesh Parjatan Corporation provides suitable hotel and cottage accommodation, catering, speed boat and other facilities at Rangamati.

5.4. Kaptai:

A pleasant and picturesque drive of 64 km. from Chitagong brings you to huge expanse of emerald and blue water ringed with tropical forest. It is the famous man made Kaptai lake (680 sq. km) formed by damming the Kamaphuli river. Only 3 km. from Kaptai along Chittagong Road, lies the ancient Chit Morong Buddist temple having beautiful Buddist statues. Other places of interest in the Hill Tract districts include Chandraghone, Khagrachari and Bandarban all in picturesque surrounding.

Sylhet - Tamabil

5.5. Sylhet - Land Of Two Leaves And A Bud:

Next to the Hill Tracts, Sylhet is the widely hilly district in the country. Nestled in the picturesque Surma valley amidst scenic tea plantations and lush green tropical forest, it is a prime attraction for all tourists. Its terraced tea gardens, eye catching orange groves and pineapple plantations and hills covered with tropical forests form a beautiful landscape. the Sylhet valley has a good number of haors which are big natural wetlands. During winter these haors are vast stretches of green land, but in the rainy season they turn into a turbulent sea. These haors provide sanctuary to the million of migratory birds who fly from Siberia across the Himalayas to avoid the severe cold. Srimangal in Sylhet, known as the tea capital of Bangladesh, is the main tea centre of the area. For miles and miles around, the visitor can see the tea gardens spread like green carpet over the plain land or on the sloping hills. A visit to the tea plantation in Sythet is a memorable experience Sylhet the tea granary of Bangladesh , not only has over 150 tea gardens but also proudly possesses the tree largest tea gardens in the world both in area and production. Sylhet is also known as the land of the famous Muslim saint Hazrat Shah Halal the great torch bearer of Islam to the region. The Shrine of this great saint is located at Sylhet town. Colourful Monipuri, Khasia and Garo tribes live in Sylhet. Monipuri tribal maidens are famous for their dance. Sylhet is also well known for its wide variety of exquisite handicrafts of cane and bamboo. Sylhet is linked with Dhaka by rail road and air.

5.5.1. Tamabil

Tamabil - Jaflong Situated amidst splendid panorama, Tamabil is a border out post on Sylhet- shilong Road, about 55 km away from Sylhet town. Besides enchanting views of the area one can also have a glimpse of the waterfalls across the border from Tamabil. Jaflong is also a scenic spot nearby amidst tea gardens and rare beauty of rolling stones from hills. Other places of tourist attraction in Sylhet include Moulvibazar, Janitipur, Madhabakunda and Haripur gas field.


5.6. Sundarbans - Home Of The Royal Bengal Tiger & Mangrove Forest:

Located near Khulna about 320 Km. west of Dhaka. Here in the south, spread over an area of about 6000 sq. km. of deltaic swamps along the coastal belt of Khulna is the biggest mangrove forest, Sundarbans (beautiful forest)- the home of the Royal Bengal Tiger. Its dense rain forests are criss crossed by a network of rivers and creeks. One finds here tides flowing in two directions in the same creek and often tigers swimming across a river or huge crocodiles basking in the sun. Other wildlife in this region are cheetahs, spotted dears, moneys, pythons, wild bears and hyenas. The forest is accessible by river from Khulna and Mongla. There are rest houses for the visitors to stay and enjoy the unspoiled nature with all its charm and majesty. Spending some times inside the forest can be a rara treat for the lovers of nature.

Kuakata - Mainamati - Mahasthangarh - Rajshai

5.7. Kuakata:
A rare scenic beauty spot on the southernmost tip of Bangladesh in the district of Patuakhali. It has a wide sandy beach from where one can get the unique opportunity of seeing both the sunrise and sun setting. It is located at a distance of 70 km, from the district headquarters of Patuakhali. Access to the area is difficult.

5.8. Mainamati - Seat of Lost Dynasties:
About eight km. to the west of Comilla town which is situated 114 km south east of Dhaka lies a range of low hills known as Mainamati-Lalmai ridge, an extensive centre of Buddhist culture. On the slopes of these hills lie scattered a treasure of information about the early Buddhist cMlization (7th-12th Centure A.D.). At Salban in the middle of the ridge, excavations laid bare a large Buddhist Vihara (monastery) and imposing central sharine. It has revealed valuable information about the rule of the Chandra and Deva dynasties which flourished here from the 7th to 12th century. The whole range of hillocks run for about 18 km. and is studded with more than 50 sites. A site museum houses the archaeological finds which include terra cotta plaques, bronze statues and casket, coins, jewellery, utensils, pottery and votive stupas embossed with Buddhist inscriptions. Museum is open Sunday-Friday and closed on Saturday. Bangladesh Academy for Rural Development (BARD) established nearby in 1959 is known for its pioneering role in co-operative movement.

5.9. Mahasthangarh - The Oldest Archaeological Site:
Located at a distance of 18 km north of Bogra town. Mahasthangarh is the oldest archaeological site of Bangladesh on the western bank of river Karatoa. The spectacular site is an imposing landmark in the area having a fortified long enclosure. Beyond the fortified area, other ancient ruins fan out within a semicircle of about 8 km radius. Several isolated mounds, the local names of which are Govinda Bhita Temple, Khodia Pathar Mound, Mankalir Kunda, Parasuramer Bedi, Jiyat Kunda etc. surround the fortified city. This 3rd century B.C. archaeological site is still held to be of great sancitity by the Hindus. Every year (mid - April) and once in every 12 years (December) thousands of Hindu devotees join the bathing ceremony on the bank of river Karatoa. A visit to the Mahasthangarh site museum will open up for one a wide variety of antiquities, ranging form terra-cotta objects to gold ornaments and coins recovered from the site. Also noteworthy are the shrine of Shah Sultan Bulki Mahisawary and Gokul Moth in the neighbourhood of Mahasthangarh.

5.10. Rajshai - A Natural Silk Producing Centre:

Rajshahi has seen the most glorious periods of Bengal's Pala dynasty. It is famous for pure silk, mangoes and lichis. Attractive silk products are cheaper. A visit to Varendra Research Museum at the heart of the city of rich archaeological finds, would be most rewarding. There are also a number of ancient mosques, shrines and temples in and around Rajshahi. Connected with Dhaka by road, rail, river and air, Rajshahi is located on the bank of the Padma river. Bangladesh Parjathan Corporation offers comfortable accommodation and restaurant facilities at Rajshahi.

Natore - Paharpur - Dinajpur - Mymensingh

5.11. Natore Place Of Dighpatiya Rajbari:

About 40km. from Rajshahi by road is Natore, an old seat of Maharajas with a beautiful palace, now serving as the Uttara Ganabhaban (President's Official residence of the northern region). It was residence of the Dighapatiya Raj. It is situated amid well kept ground surrounded by a fine moat. The buildings are modern. They include a well equipped guest house, an imposing gateway and a fine garden decorated with statues of white marble. *Guided Tours in Natore TRAVEL BANGLADESH (TRAVELBD) arranges guided package tours for groups of 2 to 8 and above from Dhaka to Natore.

5.12. Paharpur - The Largest Buddhist Seat Of Learning:

Paharpur is a small village 5 km. west of Jamalganj in the greater Rajshahi district where the remains of the most important and the largest known monastery south of the Himalayas has been excavated. This 7th century archaeological find covers approximately an area of 27 acres of land. The entire establishment, occupying a quadrangular cout, measuring more than 900 ft. and from 12 ft. to 15th. in height. With elaborate gateway complex on the north there are 45 cells on the north and 44 in each of the other three sides with a total number of 177 rooms. The architecture of the pyramidal cruciform temple is profoundly influenced by those of South - East Asia, especially Myanmar and Java. It had taken its name from a high mound, which looked like pahar or hillock. A site museum built recently houses the representative collection of objects recovered from the area. The excavated findings have also been preserved at the Varendra Research Museum at Rajshahi. The antiquities of the museum include terra-cotta plaques, images of different goods and goddesses, potteries, coin inscriptions, ornamental bricks and other minor clay objects. Interest tourists may avail "Palace & Archeological Tour Dhaka - Natore - Rajshahi- paharpur - Mahasthangarh - Bogra - Natore - Dhaka" offered by TRAVEL BANGLADESH (TRAVELBD) to visit most of the interesting places in the northern Bangladesh.

5.13. Dinajpur - Old Ornamental Temple Town:

The northern most district of the country, offers a number of attractions to the visitors. The Ransagar (great sea) lake with rest houses is a good picnic spot having facilities for fishing and rowing in a serene and quiet green countryside atmosphere. Kantanager temple, the most ornate among the late medieval temples of Bangladesh is situated near Dinajpur town. It was build by Maharaja Pran Nath in 1752 A.D. Every inch of the temple surface is beautifully embellished with exquisite terra-cotta plaques, representing flora, fauna, geometric motifis, mythological scenes and an astonishing array to contemporary social scenes and favourite pastimes. The Maharaja's palace with relics of the past centuries and local museum are worth a visit. *Guided Tours in Dinajpur TRAVEL BANGLADESH (TRAVELBD) arranges guided package tours for groups of 2 to 8 and above from Dhaka to Dinajpur.

5.14. Mymensingh - The Heart Of Bengal's Folklore:

From the foot of the Garo Hills in the north down to the plains of Dhaka in the south lies greater Mymensingh. Along the northern frontier of the district there are many aboriginal tribes such as Garos, Hajongs and Kochis who are ethnically quiet distinct from the people around them. Mymensingh has earned a notable position in Bengali literature as the birth place or rich folklores and folk songs. On the road from Dhaka to mymensing there is a national park and game sanctuary at Madhupur about 160 km. from Dhaka. There are a number of reserve forests in the area with rest houses and picnic spots. World famous painter Zainul Abedin's Art Gallery at Mymensingh carries the boyhood memories of national poet Kazi Nazrul Islam.

Other places of Bangladesh

5.15. Other places of tourist interest include the following:

5.15. 1. Shilaidaha Kuthibari
Shilaidaha Kuthibari Carries memory of the Nobel laureate poet Rabindranath Tagore who made frequent visits to this place and used to stay in connection with the administration of his jamindari and enriched Bengali literature through his writings during that time. It is located at a distance of about 20 km. from Kushita town.

5.15. 2. Shahjadpur kuthibari
Shahjadpur kuthibari about 75 km. from Pabna town, it is also a historical place connected with the frequent visits of poet Rabindranath Tagore.

5.15. 3. Sagardari
Sagardari Birth place of modern Bengali poet Michael Madhusudhan Datta who first introduced sonnet in Bengali poetry. Located at a distance of about 90 km. from Jessore town.

5.15. 4. Meherpur
Meherpur Memorial Located at a distance of about 7 km. from the town of Meherpur. First provisional revolutionary Government of Bangladesh was declared here on 14 April during the liberation war in 1971. A monument has been built to commemorate this occasion.


5.16. Park/Sanctuaries:

5.16.1. Baldha Garden
Baldha Garden Unique creation of the late Narendra Narayan Roy, the landlord of Baldha. Year of establishment was 1904. Located in Wari area of Dhaka city (opposite Christian Cemetery), the garden with its rich collection of indigenous and exotic plants is one of the most exciting attraction for naturalists and tourists. Dividend into two units: `Psyche' meanings the mother goddess of nature, the garden house about 1500 plants and trees covering 672 species and 87 families. Many of them are rare plants procured from about 50 different countries of the world. Papyrus, Amazou Lily, Victoria Regia, Camelias (Camellia japonica) Ashoke tree, Baobab (Adansonia digital) Century flower plant (Fureraea gigantea), Canyehor and Sugar palm of Philippines are some of the rare collections. A lovely lily pond inside the `Psyche' and a sun dial are worth visiting. The tombs of the founder and his son are located within `Cybele'.

5.16.2. National Botanical Garden
National Botanical Garden Located at Mirpur, near the Dhaka Zoo. Spread over an area of 205 acres of land. It has a collection of nearly 100 species of local and foreign plants. Outstanding attractions are 100 varieties of roses in the rose corner, 100 varieties of bamboos in the bamboo grove, varieties of sandal wood and an old banyan tree. A quiet place out of the main city to meet the nature.

5.16.3. Dhaka Zoological Gardens
Dhaka Zoological Gardens Popularly known as Mirpur Zoo and located at a distance of about 16 km. from the Dhaka city centre. Establiushed on 230 acres of land. It has nearly 1400 animals and birds belonging to 124 species latest addition being the Kangaroo and Tapir. Busy enclosures are those of lions, Royal Bengal Tiger, Panthers, Deers, Monkeys, Chimpanzees, Pythons, Crocodiles, Elephants, colourful birds and other animals. A zoological museum with stuffed animals and birds is rich in collection. Angling and picnic facilities available inside the zoo besides Kiosks and restaurants.

5.16.4. National Park
National Park Situated at Bhawal, 40km, north of Dhaka Trishal - Mymensingh Highway. An ideal spot for visitors, artists, photographers, omithologists and tourists. A vast (16,000 acres) national recreational forest. Main flora is Garjan (Assam Sal) and fauna includes small tigers, leopards, foxes, pythons, lizards and many local birds. A 1000 metre long meandering man made lake having angling and rowing facilities, the flower gardens inside are added attraction to natural beauty. Mere walking or lazing under the shade of trees is pleasant. 20 picnic spots., 6 rest houses of the forest department with comfortable bed and modern amenities are available inside the national park. Prior premission/booking may be obtained from the Divisional Forest Officer.

Museums of Bangladesh

5.17. Museums:

5.17. 1. National Museums
National Museums Established as Dhaka Museum in 1913. It has been renamed as the National Museum and was shifted to its new building at shahbag in 1983. It is a four storied building and has forty galleries under four departments, namely (1) Natural History, (2) History and Classical Art, (3) Ethnography and Decorative Art and (4) Contemporary art and world civilization. The museum contains a large number of interesting collection including sculptures and paintings of the Buddhist and Muslim periods. It also has a rich collection of old coins, metal images, books on art, ivory and silver filigree works, textiles including the world famous muslim fabric embroidered quilt (Nakshi Kantha), arms and ammunitions of the bygone warriors, varieties of fine handicrafts and models of the village and town life, contemporary paintings and sculptures. Above all, the valuable articles of the heroic liberation war of Bangladesh are also there.

5.17. 2. Folk Art Museum
The Folk Art Museum was established in 1975 to fulfill the dream of the celebrated painter Shilpacharya Zainul Abedin. The Museum has a very rich collection of folk objects of different materials and forms of aesthetic and utilitarian values. These undoubtedly reflect the sentiments, impulse, temperament, moods, idiosyncracy skill and expertise of the artists and artisans. It is a national traditional art heritage of Bangladesh, exhibiting objects of exceptional design and skill. Open: Saturday - Wednesday 9.00 am. 5.00 pm. closed Thursday, Friday & Govt, Holidays.

5.17. 3. Ethnological Museum
The ethnological museum at Chittagong stands as a milestone in our national progress. It is a place where ample facilities have been provided to carry out enthnologiczal research. This museum is recognised as one of the best specialised museum is recognised as one of the best specialised museums in south east asia. It houses objects of 12 different tribes of Bangladesh and also of many tribes of Australia, India and Pakistan.

5.17. 4. Archaeological Museums
Archaeological Museums Every place of archaeological importance houses a small archaeological museum i.e. at Lalbagh Fort, Mahasthangarh, Paharpur, and Mainamati.

5.17. 5. Varendra Museum
Varendra Museum Situated at Rajshahi. This museum has a rich collection of objects of Mohenjodaro and also of 16th to 19th century A.D. This is devoted to the study of ancient history an culture. Its rich collections contain interesting objects of past Hindu, Buddhist and Muslim heritage. It is located at the heart of Rajshahi town and maintained by Rajshahi University authority. The year of its formal establishment is 1910.

5.17. 6. Tribal Museum
Tribal Museum The only Tribal Cultural Museum in the Hill Tracts region was established at Rangamati town in 1978 and run by the Tribal Cultural Institute. It preserves valuable objects and articles of different tribes depicting their socioeconomic, cultural and historical tradition. These include typical tribal dresses, ornaments, arms and ammunitions, coins, statues made of wood, bronze and other metals, musical instruments, ivory products, handicrafts, paintings on tribal life etc.

Entertainment of Bangladesh

5.18. Entertainment:

5.18. 1. Cinema
Dhaka has several excellent air conditioned cinema halls which screen British. American, continental and Bangladeshi films. All district towns have their own cinemas. Check the daily morning newspapers for details of current attractions.

5.18. 2. Theatre
Bengali and Bengali translations of western plays are staged frequently. Popular theatre groups are: Dhaka Theatre, Nagarik Nattya Sampraday and Theatre.

5.18. 3. Cultural Shows
Cultural shows are quite frequently performed at several venues like Mohila Samity, Guide House and British Council Auditorium. Check with hotel receptions and the daily newspapers for details.

5.18. 4. Fairs, festivals & Holidays
Fairs and festivals have always plaued a significant role in the life of the citizens of this country. They derive from them a great amount of joy, entertainment and colour for life. While most of the festivals have sprung from religious rituals, the fairs have their roots in the very heart of the people, irrespective of religion, caste or creed. The biggest muslim festivals are Eidul Fitr. Next comes Eid ul Azha. Other widely celebrated muslim festivals are Eid e Miladunabi, Shab - e - Barat, Ashura (10th day of Lunar Month, Muharram), and Jamt ul wide. Festivals like Durga Puja of the Hindus, Christmas of the Christians, Buddha Purnima of the Buddhists are also celebrated with equal fervour. Among the nonreligious festivals Bengali New Year's Day, Victory Day (16th December) and Independence day (26th March) are celebrated nation wide. All these festivals are marked as public holidays. Other national holidays are 21st February (National Mourning Day in memory of the martyrs of Language movement) 1st May and 7th November (National Solidarity Day).

Dance and Music of Bangladesh

5.19. Dance:
Classical forms of the sub continent predominate in Bangladeshi dance. The folk, tribal and middle eastern traits are also common. Among the tribal dances, particularly popular are Monipur and Santal.

5.20. Music:
The music in Bangladesh can be divided into three distinct categories classical , folk and modern. The classical music, both vocal and instrumental is rooted in the remote past of the sub continent. Ustad Alauddin Khan and Ustad Ayet Ali Khan are two names in classical instrument music who are internationally known. Folk song nurtured through the ages by village poets, rich in devotional musticism and loveres is popular in Bangladesh. The best known forms are Bhatiali, Baul, Marfati, Murshidi and Bhawaiya, Lalan, Hansan Raja, Abbasuddin and Abdul Alim are four great manes in flok song. Modern Bengali song pioneered by Rabindranath Tagore and Kazi Nazrul Islam blended western and Middle Eastern traits with traditional forms. Contemporary patterns have more inclinations to west. Pop song and band groups are also coming up mainly in Dhaka city.

Accomodation, Tour Operators, transport service, restaurant and hotel facilities In Bangladesh


6.1. Accommodation Facilities:

BPC has already set up different types of accommodation and other facilities at different places of tourism importance. For holding conferences and aranging cultural functions, BPC has established an air conditioned modern auditorium with 200 seating capacity at Rangamati and six conference halls of different capacities at Cox’s Bazar, Rangpur, Dhaka, Rajshahi and Bogra.

For tourists recreation there has have Restaurant Facilities, Amusement Facilities and Shopping Facilities, which are also opened for the foreign tourists.

6.2. Names of some important and well known hotels are listed below:
  • The Pan Pacific Sonargaon Hotel
  • Dhaka Sheraton Hotel
  • Radisson Water Garden Hotel Dhaka
  • The Westin Dhaka
  • Hotel Sarina
  • Grand Azad Hotel
  • Dhaka Regency Hotel & Resort
  • Abakash (Parjatan Hotel)
  • Hotel Agrabad, Chittagong

6.3. Names of some popular restaurants are:
  • Atrium Restaurant
  • Khazana
  • Heritage
  • Sajna
  • Le Saigon
  • Koreana Restaurant
  • Sky Room
  • The White Castle Restaurant
  • Vintage Restaurant
  • Arirang

6.4. Leading Tour Operators and Major Transport Service Providers of Bangladesh:

Some of the popular tour operators:
  • The Guide Tours Ltd
  • The Bengal Tours Limited
  • Contic
  • Green Channel
  • Bangladesh Parjatan Corporation (BPC)
  • Galaxy Holidays

6.5. The names of few transport service providers:
  • GMG Airlines
  • Biman Bangladesh Airlines
  • Best Air
  • Bangladesh Railway
  • S. Alam Bus Service
  • Silk Line
  • Shohag Paribahan (Pvt) Ltd
  • Green Line Paribahan

Different Tourism Organizations in Bangladesh


For building image of Bangladesh different Organizations and tourism services are generally provided.

7.1. Bangladesh Parjatan Corporation (BPC):

During half a century there was a tourism department in this region, which is under the Ministry of Civil Aviation and Tourism. As a semi-autonomous organization it enjoys wide power and authority including the right to acquire and dispose property; construct and run hotels, restaurants and other tourist facilities; operate duty free shop, transportation and car rental: establish and run training institutes: and invest its funds as it deems proper. The broad objectives of the formation of the BPC are as follows:

a. Creation of favorable impression in the minds of foreigners about tourist attractions in Bangladesh through disseminating information by various media and thereby undertaking promotional activities through various publicity media:
b. Creation of physical facilities for both domestic and foreign tourists by providing accommodation, catering, transportation and recreational facilities and thereby operation of the above facilities;
c. Providing with training for the development of skilled manpower for employment in the travel trade sector both at home and abroad; and
d. Regulation of tourism activities in the country.

7.2. Others notable native tour operators:

7.2.1. The Guide Tours Ltd:

It is the largest tour operator in Bangladesh. Its domestic tours cover most of the tourist spots in Bangladesh and outbound tours include Nepal, Bhutan, Tibet, Mynmar, India, Thailand, Combodia, Vietnam and Laos.

The Bengal Tours Ltd.,Unique Tours and Travels, Kushiara Tourism Ltd., Sunfine Travels International, Tour planners, Intraco (Bangladesh) Ltd., Green Channel, Tour Bangla, Journey Plus etc. are the private tour operator in Bangladesh.

7.2.2 Airlines:

Biman Bangladesh Airlines, GMG Airlines are playing the vital role in Bangladesh for tourism sector.

7.2.3 Travel Agencies:

Travel agencies of both the destination and the tourist generating countries also play important roles in the promotion and development of tourism of a country. Bangladeshi Travel agencies acting the same as well as the neighbor countries.

7.2.4 Building better skill for building better image National Hotel and Tourism Training Institute (NHTTI):

Skilled human resource is sine-quo-non for the development of any sector of the economy. “In order to develop human resource in tourism sector professional training is a must. With this end in view, BPC has taken the venture of human resource development for the industry. As such, the corporation (BPC) established the NHTTI in 1974. This institute gives technical assistance to upgrade the training courses. The Satellite Training Center:

The NHTTI has established a Satellite Training Center in Chittagong in the july of 1993 to train the local students there. As the most attractive tourist zones of Bangladesh are in and Chittagong, Cox’s Bazar and Chittagong Hill Tract areas, The main motive of establishing this STC was to train the local people of the destination area.

Tourism Performance in Bangladesh


Tourism has become the largest industry in the world . Nearly a billion people traveled in 2007 alone, generating 35 per cent of the world’s export of services and over 70 per cent for least Developed Countries. Tourism produced annual revenue of $733 billion, or two billion a day, in 2006. By 2020 1.6 billion people are expected to trot the globe.

These are staggering numbers. Are we prepared to tap into this burgeoning industry? We are not. We have to think global. just gauge Cox’s Bazar’s tourism barometer against those of Agra, Goa or Phuket- its hardly flattering. So we have to thing that the longest beach –in-the-world tag is just not enough to bring global tourists to Cox’s Bazar.

Tourists Satisfaction


It is already mentioned that tourists’ satisfaction has been measured on the basis of impressions of the respondent tourists on the sixteen important components of tourism arrangements in Bangladesh- Quality of Attractions, Facilities Available, Accessibility to Destinations, Smoothness of Transport, Accommodation Conditions, Hygienic Food and Drinks, People & Their Way of Life, Security of Movement, Cooperation of Channel Members in Source Countries, Responsiveness of Tourism Firms in Bangladesh, Efficiency of ht Guides (Language, Knowledge and Presentation), Prices of Tourism Services, Availability of Information on Bangladesh Tourism, Attractiveness of Promotional Materials, Cultural components, Image of Bangladesh as a Tourist Destination.

Constraints to the development of tourism industry in Bangladesh


Though tourism industry and its market have grown phenomenally worldwide, there is no significant growth and development of tourism in Bangladesh. In reality, tourism in Bangladesh is essentially at its infant stage. As a third world nation, Bangladesh has no doubt many obstacles to the development of its tourism sector. These mainly include underdeveloped infrastructure, lack of facilities, insecurity of tourists’ movements, bad image of the country, lack of sufficient investment, transportation and communication problems, introduce the country among the prospective tourists, etc. However, some constraints/obstacles faced by the tourism industry in Bangladesh to its development are given below:

Absence of Enough and Exclusive Tourist products, Absence of Peripheral Products, Underdeveloped Infrastructure, Poor Access to Destinations, Small Number of Tour Operators, inefficient National Airlines, insignificant Role of Travel Agencies, Shortage of Professional Guides, Inefficient Channel of Collection Network, Insignificant Role of Travel Agencies, Shortage of Professional Guides, Inefficient Channel of Collection Network, Higher/Unreasonable Prices of Some Components, Bad Image of an Misconception about the Country, Lack of Enough and Effective Marketing Promotion, Lack of Security, Lack of Professionally Skilled people, Absence of Appropriate Management, Absence of Marketing Principles, Resource constraints, Inadequate attention and Priority of the Government, Inadequate Role of the BPC, Frequent Changes in the Top Position of the BPC, Least Travel Minded People, Absence of Private Sector Participation.

Suggestion for reforms and Improvements in the tourism Industry of Bangladesh


Every sector of a developing country like Bangladesh needs to be taken care of. Tourism sector is of no exception from it. It is necessary that the concerned authority should direct their efforts to identify the problems and isolate the shortcomings first and chalk out necessary measures to eradicate those. Here above are some of the problems of the industry. It is urgently needed to pay attention to the above-mentioned core problems faced by the tourism industry in Bangladesh.

The following pragmatic measures could be taken by the concerned authorities in order to pave the way for reforms and improvements and put this sector in Bangladesh on the right track:

11.1. Development of Tourism Infrastructure and Facilities:

An improved infrastructure is the key to the expansion and of tourism activities in a destination country. The over all infrastructures existing in Bangladesh should be developed in order to facilitate tourism development in the country. For this, the Government should initiate some ambitious projects in connection with developing the overall tourism infrastructure of the country.

11.2. Adequate Finance:

The private commercial banks, specialized banks, national commercial banks, investment and leasing and investment companies offer various kinds of loans and credit skims. Specially, SME loans are now at the pick of the demand. All the financial institutions, the private and public commercial banks, leasing firms should come forward and offer easy credit or micro credit facilities for the entrepreneurs who are willing to be a part of tourism industry.

11.3. Private Sector:

Private sector should be encouraged in a massive scale to conduct their business in tourism sector. Many of the micro sectors of tourism can not be attended by the Government. So, private sector must be adequate financial support.

11.4. Political Stability and Supreme Leadership:

Now the people of Bangladesh have become conscious about their image. They know what they want form their representatives. To depict an enhanced, clear, contented and transparent image of Bangladesh political stability is must. Supreme leadership can make all impossible possible. Malaysia is now a giant as a tourist destination. Their supreme and fine leadership helped a lot to create Malaysia as a must visit destination.

11.5. Pollution Control:

As many of the sources of pollutions are unnecessary and could be reduced fairly easily and at little cost, there is no excuse for further delaying on action. Given the magnitude of the problem, and of the human suffering that results, the citizen of Bangladesh can no longer afford to neglect the issues of the pollutions. For the health, sanity, and well-being of the population, and for creating Bangladesh as a better destination for tourists, it is time that all should take this problem seriously, and begin implementing solutions. Whether as individuals, NGO staff, or members of the media, mass people can and must take specific steps to reduce the problems of pollutions.

11.6. Others:

Offer Enough and Exclusive Tourist Products, Develop Peripheral Products and Facilities to Complement Core Products, Improving and Controlling the Quality of Products and Services, Arrangements of Cultural Programs, conservation of the Tourism Components for the Future, Development of Infrastructure and Facilities, Facilitate Easy Access to Different Destinations, Establishment of More Economy Hotels in the Destination Areas, Needs as Efficient Channel of Collection Network, Building and Maintaining Relationships among the Service Providers, Set and Charge Reasonable Prices, Removing Misconceptions and Enhancing Image of the Country, Undertake Enough and Effective Marketing Promotional Activities, Designing Promotional Plans Aiming at Benefits Sought by the Tourists, Emphasis on Push communication Strategy, Opening Branches and Information counters in the Source Countries, Implementing Motivational Programs, Allowing More Discounts and offering Other Incentives, Arrange Enough Security Measures for the Tourists, Develop comprehensive Plan, Priority of the Tourism Sector in the National Development Plans, Encouraging More Private and Foreign Investments in the Tourism Sector, Ensure Proper Role of the BPC, Employ Experienced Person and Avoid Frequent Changes at the Top of the BPC, Replacing the BPC by a National Tourism Board, Improving the Image and Performance of Biman Bangladesh Airlines, Development of Professional Efficiency, Better Understanding of Marketing Principles and Techniques, Development of Domestic Tourism.

Status of Bangladesh in global tourism


The current travel and tourism industry is a multi-billion dollar and growing business sector. UNWTO (United Nations World Tourism Organization) predicts that global tourism industry will benefit from more than one billion tourists by 2010, growing to 1.6 billion by 2020. This will give tourism the status of the number one industry globally.
In 2005, global travel and tourism generated an estimated $680 billion in expenditures (up from $463 billion in 2001). The number of arrivals was 842 million in 2006 (up from 806 million in 2005 and 688 million in 2001). Despite world recession, threats of terrorism, and social and political unrest, the tourism industry is booming.
Although France ranks number one among the world's 10 top destinations with about 76 million arrivals, US earns most: about $82 billion. Americans also spend more on travel and tourism. They are interested even in space tourism.
Immediately after independence, the government set up Bangladesh Parjatan Sangstha (Bangladesh Tourism Organization), with a view to develop this industry. The organization was renamed as Bangladesh Parjatan Corporation in 1973.
The 2007 economic review of the corporation states: "The foremost objectives of the corporation are to promote tourism in Bangladesh, build up positive image of the country abroad, elevate infrastructure at tourism sites, provide services to the tourists and develop tourist resources that exist in Bangladesh, creating employment opportunity in different sectors of this industry which is helpful to alleviate poverty."
I am not sure how the corporation will achieve its cherished objectives, as its profit margin decreases every year. Its 2007 economic review shows that it made a profit of Taka 115 million during 1996-2001. The figure came down to Taka 55 million during 2001-2006, although Table 1 shows that the tourist arrivals increased during this period. In 2005, Bangladesh received 208,000 tourists, which is about 5% of what India received; it is 52%, 55%, 26% and 31% of what Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka received respectively that year.
In 2004, Bangladesh earned about $67 million (Table 2) as foreign exchange earnings from tourists (those who came with tourist visa, not necessarily that they spent their money on tourism alone), which is 1.4% of what India earned; it is 14%, 26%, 9%, and 8% of what Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka earned respectively in that year.
This clearly shows that Bangladesh remains far behind neighboring countries, although it formulated a National Tourism Policy in 1992 where tourism was identified as an industry of due priority. The country's 1999 industrial policy identified tourism as a thrust sector!
Today, there are about 150 private tour operators in the country, and 78 of them formed an association called TOAB (Tour Operators Association of Bangladesh) in 1992. No Bangladesh tour operator works abroad, and no foreign tour operators work in Bangladesh.
TOAB claims that they cater to 95% of the tourists who arrive in the country. They also host most of the domestic tourists. However, they do not have any statistics on how many tourists they host every year, how big their private industry is, or what their contribution to the government treasury is.
TOAB feels that the National Tourism Policy 1992 has never been made effective. Although Bangladesh Parjatan Corporation and TOAB do not have effective cooperation at the moment, there is a feeling in both the organizations that there is much more they can do together. TOAB feels that Bangladesh's proximity to fast growing countries like India and China may allow it to share the benefits of their growth.

September 6, 2008

Potentiality of tourism development in Bangladesh


Bangladesh may not have any mono-symbolic tourist attraction like the Tajmahal of Agra, nor the Hanging Garden of Babylon. It also does not have the Great Wall of China, the Mount Everest of Nepal, or the Waterfall of Niagara. Then, why should tourists come and visit Bangladesh? Rather, the United stats and Europe continue to be the most visited destinations in the world. But , they are also now changing their outlooks and shifting their choices for new attractions. Most of the tourists are avoiding the popular tourism circuits and mass visited or over crowded beaten track of traditional tourist interest and are now handing towards new areas. Many of the potential international tourists are moving to visit more natural form of attractions- exploring exotic land or wildlife. They also prefer to enjoy undiscovered cultural form of attractions. Many countries improve their economies through exploiting this changing trend. Although there is huge potential for Bangladesh to reap this benefit, the country is yet touristic ally undiscovered and unexplored. The country is still unknown to the potential tourists and the industry lacks in appropriate approaches to marketing it tourism products.

21st century will see a higher percentage of the total population traveling, specially in developing countries, and people will be going on holidays more often sometimes two, three or four times a year. Bangladesh therefore, should immediately take necessary measures to develop infrastructure, improve the existing products, develop peripheral products, and undertake marketing promotional activities on priority basis with a view to attracting larger share from these potential visitors and keeping pace with this trend. Actually Bangladesh is a highly prospective country with fantastic tourism potentials. Necessary help in marketing its tourism products and building image of the country. This has also generated long awaited hope to develop tourism in the country.

So we should take a lot of initiatives either from Government or public sector to develop this great industry. This industry not only chance a country’s economic condition but also make infrastructure development, Physical attitude, develop social norms & values, and change the core concept of tradition came from ancestors. That’s why to develop these great industry future, researches would be able to improve the existing piece of work and explore new findings to recommend more effective policy and impacts on the development of tourism in Bangladesh. They can also evaluate the successes and failures as well as identifying the implementation constrains of these policies. Thus they can suggest for country based practical and straightforward policy package for the government. Researchers may also explore the possibility of private sector investment, both of domestic and foreign and thus evaluate the possibility of success of such investment.