Bangladesh – Tigers, Temples and Tea Plantations
Little is known about Bangladesh as a travel destination. But the country has a lot to offer: tigers ramble through the lush nature of the jungle, the fertile alluvial areas of the great Asian rivers are characterised by vast tea plantations and you find impressive temple complexes all over the country.
Geography - Only six metres above sea level
The South East Asian state Bangladesh borders on the Bay of Bengal, India and Myanmar. Tropical climate causes pleasantly warm temperatures between 25 and 35 °C throughout the year. Bangladesh is characterised by its flat geography – the capital Dhaka in the country's heartland lies only six metres over sea level. Only the north and the south-east of the country contain a few mountains with the Keokradong (1,230 m) as the highest peak.
Nature - A widely ramified delta and fields as far as the eye can see
The mighty rivers Ganges, Brahmaputra and Meghna create a widely ramified delta with many little rivers and streams, a well-watered flooded area and fertile soils in Bangladesh. In the flatter plains, fields, on which rice, sugar cane and tea are grown, extend to the horizon. Next to them thick mangrove and rainforests, which are characterised by an unbelievable natural diversity, line the coast. The mountainous regions also contain rainforest. Orchids and bromeliads grow in the midst of these evergreen trees. Numerous mammals, birds and reptiles live there with the Bengal tiger as the most famous animal.
Natural sights - Sundarbans, Chittagong Hill and Cox's Bazar
The Sundarbans contain the greatest mangrove forests on earth. The swampy regions, which are crossed by many streams, are an excellent living environment for plants and animals such as the Bengal tiger, crocodiles as well as many fish and birds. The Chittagong Hill Tracts are covered in vast, native rainforest areas. Visitors can follow the trails of tigers, elephants and monkeys here. In the south of Bangladesh you find Cox's Bazar, the country's longest beach. It invites visitors to swim, enjoy the sun and go fishing. The park around the Gulshan Lake in Dhaka or the Boga Lake in Bandarban offer great conditions for relaxing in green nature.
Culture - A mix of Islam, Hinduism and Buddhism
Until 1947, Bangladesh belonged to British India as the Bengal region. Afterwards it was part of the Pakistan under the name of East Pakistan. The region of Oakistan came apart in the course of the Bangladesh Liberation War in 1971 and constituted the independent state Bangladesh. Since 1990 the country has been democratic. The people in Bangladesh live in close contact to nature. The cultivation of rice, jute, cereal and vegetables still plays a major role. Besides their relationship with nature, religion constitutes a great part of the population's life. The Islam, Hinduism and Buddhism characterise the lives of the passionate, straightforward inhabitants, whose nature is reflected in the ever-present energetic music. As it is common in countries which are mostly influenced by the Islam, values like respect and politeness rate high.
Cultural sights - Magnificent temples and mosques allure visitors
The capital Dhaka has about 13 million inhabitants and is an extraordinary metropolis. It is constantly in motion and its streets are filled with the vibrant activity of people who are heading towards their destinations on foot, with a rickshaw or by car. The high glass skyscrapers in Dhaka's commercial districts embody the country's modern side. In addition, the lively metropolis contains many cultural treasures such as the distinctive, pink Ahsan Manzil Palace and the Lalbagh Fort from the 17th century. Worth seeing are also the well-known Hindu Dhakeshwari Temple and the Baitul Mukarram, the country's greatest mosque. A unique sight are the ruins of monastery Somapura Mahavihara in Paharpur. The monumental pyramid-shaped complex from the 8th century was once a significant Buddhist centre and accommodates numerous inscriptions, wall figures and shrines. You also find ruins of age-old, once magnificent palaces, temples and monasteries in the cities Rajshahi and Mahasthangarh. The mosque city Bagerhat Sadar provides insights into the country's Islamic side.
Experience - Swimming in the Ganges or taking a paddle steamer
A bath in the Ganges is said to have a healing effect. Travellers who want to get to know Bangladesh can participate in this ritual experience. Handicraft objects are produced all over the country and are excellent souvenirs. You can buy woven muslin fabrics, pearl jewellery or beautiful ceramic and bronze ware. Bangladesh's cuisine is typically Asian. Highly seasoned rice dishes with vegetables, meat or prawns play a major role. Tea is also part of the population's way of living. It is produced in countless unique kinds, which you should taste as a visitor. You can also watch their production on a tea plantation, for example in Sylhet. A wonderful way of getting to know the country is a cruise – either along the coast or on the many rivers. A special experience is a trip on the paddle steamer "The Rocket" from Dhaka to Khulna.
Activities - Relaxing at the Indian Ocean
Bangladesh offers great strips of land for trekking, for example in the Chittagong Hill Tracts. There you can explore the country's natural beauty on foot, on the back of elephants or by ship. The calm, unspoiled nature is ideal for unwinding and forgetting about everyday life. In addition, the beaches invite holidaymakers to relax at the seaside in warm, tropical weather – be it by swimming, diving or on long walks. The plane landscape makes Bangladesh an excellent location for cycling.
International airlines head for the airports in Dhaka (DAC), Chittagong (CGP) and Sylhet (ZYL). Most of the inhabitants speak the official language Bengali. When planning a journey to Bangladesh you should keep in mind the rainy season as well as the times in which tropical hurricanes may occur. Between cities you can travel by bus, car (you better get a chauffeur) or ship. You should not miss out on the interesting experience of a ride on a rickshaw.
Bangladesh is a travel destination for holidaymakers who want to experience a special, Asian culture far away from streams of tourists. Lovers of culture can marvel at the impressive constructions which emerged due to the Buddhism, Hinduism and Islam. The country also offers a wonderful, diverse fauna and flora to the delight of lovers of nature.