Dhaka is the capital of Bangladesh; it has attracted traveler from distant and closer throughout in all the ages. It has a history dating back to earliest time. But the correct 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 citizens with an area of about 815 sq. km. Having a happy amalgamation 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.
2. CHITTAGONG - GATEWAY TO THE BAY OF BENGAL
With a picturesque neighborhood of large hill forests and lakes. Chittagong is a good vacation spot. It is the second largest city of Bangladeshand a busy of Bangladesh and a busy international sea port. Its green hills and forests, broad sabulous beaches and fine cool climate all the time attract holiday makers. It combines the hump of an unquiet 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 organization of heavy, medium and light industries. Bangladesh's only steel mill and oil factory are also located here. Chittagong is joined with Dhaka by rail, road, air and water. It is also linked with Cox's Bazaar and Calcutta by Air.
3. RANGAMATI - THE HEART OF THE LAKE DISTRICT
Road amid green fields and zigzag hills will take you to Rangamati, the headquarters of Rangamati Hill District which is a wonderful depository of scenic splendours with flora and fauna of different descriptions. The township is located on the western bank of the Kaptai Lake. Rangamati is a favorite holiday resort because of its attractive 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 attraction of Rangamati are many, tribal life, fishing, speed boat cruising, water skiing, hiking, bathing or just enjoying nature as it is. Bangladesh Parjatan Corporation provides suitable hotel and cottage lodging, catering, speed boat and other facilities at Rangamati. Day long attractive sightseeing is organized in Cox'sbazar by TRAVEL BANGLADESH (TRAVELBD) during tourist season.
A pleasant and picturesque drive of 64 km. from Chitagong brings you to tremendous vastness of emerald and blue water ringed with hot forest. It is the famous man prepared 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 attractive Buddist statues. Other places of interest in the Hill Tract districts include Chandraghone, Khagrachari and Bandarban all in picturesque surrounding.
5. SYLHET - LAND OF TWO LEAVES AND A BUD
Nestled in the picturesque Surma valley amidst beautiful 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 hot forests form an attractive landscape. The Sylhet vale 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 sanctum 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 grounds spread like green rug over the plain land or on the sloping hills. A visit to the tea agricultural estate 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 manufacture. Sylhet is also known as the ground of the famous Muslim saint Hazrat Shah Halal the great torch bearer of Islam to the region.
6. SUNDARBANS - HOME OF THE ROYAL BENGAL TIGER & MANGROVE FOREST
Placed near Khulna about 320 Km. west of Dhaka. Here in the south, diffuse over an area of about 6000 sq. km. of deltaic swamps along the coastal belt of Khulna is the biggest mangrove forest, Sundarbans (attractive forest)- the home of the Royal Bengal Tiger. Its compact 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 is cheetahs, spotted dears, moneys, pythons, wild bears and hyenas. The forest is reachable by river from Khulna and Mongla. There are relaxing houses for the guests to stay and enjoy the pure nature with all its charm and majesty.
A rare scenic attractiveness places on the southernmost tip of Bangladesh in the district of Patuakhali. It has a large sabulous beach from where one can get the unique opportunity of seeing both the sunup and sun setting. It is situated at a distance of 70 km, from the district headquarters of Patuakhali. Access to the area is difficult. Guided Tours in Kuakata TRAVEL BANGLADESH (TRAVELBD) arranges guided package tours for groups of 2 to 8 and above from Dhaka to Kuakata.
8. MAINAMATI - SEAT OF LOST DYNASTIES
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 center of the point, excavations laid bare a big 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) recognized nearby in 1959 is known for its pioneering role in co-operative movement.
9. MAHASTHANGARH - THE OLDEST ARCHAEOLOGICAL SITE
Situated at a space 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 sanctity 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.
10. RAJSHAI - A NATURAL SILK PRODUCING CENTRE
Rajshahi has been the most glorious periods of Bengal's Pala dynasty. It is famous for pure silk, mangoes and lichis. Beautiful 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. Linked with Dhaka by road, rail, river and air, Rajshahi is situated on the bank of the Padma River. Bangladesh Parjathan Corporation offers comfortable lodging and restaurant services at Rajshahi.
11. NATORE PLACE OF DIGHPATIYA RAJBARI
DIGHPATIYA RAJBARI is located 40km. from Rajshahi by road is Natore, an old seat of Maharajas with a attractive palace, now serving as the Uttara Ganabhaban (President's Official residence of the northern region). It was residence of the Dighapatiya Raj. It is placed amid well kept ground surrounded by a fine moat. The buildings are new. They include a well prepared guest house, an imposing gateway and a fine garden decorated with statues of white marble.
12. PAHARPUR - THE LARGEST BUDDHIST SEAT OF LEARNING
Paharpur is a small village 5 km. west of Jamalganj in the better Rajshahi district where the remains of the most main and the biggest known monastery south of the Himalayas has been excavated. 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 structural design 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 heap, which looked like pahar or hillock. A site museum built recently houses the representative collection of things 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.
13. DINAJPUR - OLD ORNAMENTAL TEMPLE TOWN
The northern most district of the country, offers a number of beautiful places to the visitors. The Ransagar (great sea) lake with relax houses is a good picnic places having facilities for fishing and rowing in a serene and silence green countryside environment. Kantanager temple, the most ornate among the late medieval temples of Bangladesh is placed near Dinajpur town. It was build by Maharaja Pran Nath in 1752 A.D. Every inch of the temple surface is wonderfully embellished with exquisite terra-cotta plaques, representing flora, fauna, geometric motifis, mythological scenes and an astonishing array to contemporary social scenes and favorite pastimes. The Maharaja's palace with relics of the past centuries and local museum are worth a visit.