The land of the Royal Bengal Tiger. Nature has bestowed Bangladesh with all the beautiful shades of green. This large delta rises from the Bay of Bengal and goes up to the footsteps of the great Himalayas. The Country is surrounded by India and a small strip in the Southeast is connected with Myanmar. It covers an area of 144036 sq. km having a total population of 13.3 million. Though it is a small Country, it has much diverse attraction for the nature lovers as well as is rich in culture and heritage.
The history of Bangladesh is fragmentary in nature due mainly to lack of records and adequate research. The earliest mention of Bangladesh is found in the Hindu epic, the Mohabarata. Evidence also suggests that there was a strong Mongoloid presence as well. Soon after, in the 5th and 6th centuries B.C, came the Aryans and the Dravidians. Then came the Murray, Guptas, Palas, Senas who were Buddhist and Hindus.
Mahasthangarh (3rd Century BC) the oldest archeological site of the country is located north of Bogra town. The ruins of Mahanthangarh have been identified with the ancient city of Pundranagar and its account can be found in the literary and other Epigraphic records of the various dynasties. Govinda vita temple and Vashu vihar are two famous sites, are reminiscent of a very rich civilization and culture. The site museum will introduce you to a fairly large variety of antiquities
Paharpur Buddhist Vihara (8-12 Century AD), the biggest single vihara south of the Himalaya is in Noagaon district and is now a world heritage site. From the available record it is clear that the cultural and religious life of Somapura Mahavihara or Paharpur Monastery had a close link with that of Nalanda Mahavihara. The famous Buddhist savant Atish Dipankara lived for several years in this monastery. The site museum will introduce you to a large variety of antiquities and now Paharpur is a world heritage site.
Phutia Temple City
Putia Temple City Putia, where you can find the magnificent Govinda Temples (1823), and the largest Shiva Temple in Bangladesh. Consists of a cluster of notable old Hindu Temples in Puthia Upazila,Rajshahi Division, Bangladesh. Located 23 km to the east of Rajshahi city it has the largest number of Historic temples in Bangladesh. These temples were built by Hindu Zamindars Rajas of the Puthia Raj family who were noted philanthropists of Rajshahi. The temples have been built in terracotta in a variety of styles combining the typical Jor Bangla Architecture with other influences. The Rajbari or Palace of the Raja of Puthia and the exquisite and unique Dol Mancha is part of the complex. The temples are laid out around a lake with a sprawling lawn.the Puthia Raj family was established by one holy man, named Bhatsacharya who lived in the 16th century. Raja Man Singh, Governor of the Mughal emperor Akbar confiscated the Jagir of the refractory pathan jagirdar of Rajshahi named Lashker Khan and bestowed the Zamindary on the saintly Bhatsacharya for his learning but he declined. However, his son Pitambar was granted the Lashkarpur estate permanently. On his death his son Nilambar received the title of Raja from Emperor Jehangir. The Puthia Royal Family Estate was the second largest Zamindary and the wealthiest in British Bengal. After India’s partition the then pakistani government abolished the zamindary system and confisticated all Hindu properties. The Royal Family migrated to India shortly.
Kantajee’s Temple (18 Century AD) is situated in Birganj near Dinajpur district. This temple was built in 1752 by Maharaja Pran Nath. Every inch of the temple surface in beautifully decorated with exquisite terracotta plaques, representing flora and fauna, mythological scenes and an astonishing array of contemporary social happening and favorite pastimes. Putia, the temple city was the homeland of Ram Chandra Thakur, used to be one of the 12 Bhuiyan, where you can find the magnificent terracotta Govinda temples, built during 1823 and the largest Shiva Temple of Bangladesh.
Gaud or GAUR
Gaud occupied a great importance mainly for its historical mosques than any other area. These mosques were built during the rule of Muslim Sultanate in the late 15th century AD. Most of them are located in the western part of Bangladesh. Chotosona Mosque, Taha Khana Mosque, Darasbari Mosque, Kusumbha Mosque, Bagha Mosque, etc., are some renowned mosques deserve to be mentioned.
Mainamati (8-12 century AD) about eight km. to the west of Comilla Town is a Buddhist archaeological site. It earned its name after the Chandra Dynasty King Govinda Chandra’s mother name. There are about 50 sites in the area, of them Salban Vihara is the most massive built monastery including other interesting sites like, Kutila Mura, Itakhola Mura, Rupban Mura, etc. The site museum will introduce you to a fairly large variety of antiquities. Mainamoti.
60 Dome Mosque
Shait Gambud Mosque (15 century AD) in Bagerhat district, a wonderful architectural design of medieval period was founded by famous Muslim saint Khan Jahan Ali in 1459. This massive structure was entirely made of brick and stone .It is one of the largest and significant among all the mosques in Bangladesh and now a world heritage site. At the same time he constructed several other mosques in Bagerhat and adjoining areas.
Chittagong a picturesque hinterland of large green hills and lakes is the second largest city of the country and a busy international seaport. It has many industrial establishments too. Its green hills and forests, broad sandy beaches and fine cool climate always attract holidaymakers. It combines the hum of a seaport with the pleasure of a charming hill-town with its undulating topography. Places of tourist attraction in Chittagong city are as follows: – Shrine of Bayzid Bostami, World war-11 Cemetery, Foy’s Lake, Ethnological Museum, Court Building, Patenga Beach, Chatteshwari temple, Sitakund, etc.
Chittagong Hill Districts
The Hill Tracks comprises of three Hill districts. The topography of the area is typical from rest of Bangladesh. The steep forested evergreen hills with the major tribal people and there different culture is of great attraction. The different tribes like the Chakma, Marma, Tanchanghya, Bom, Murang, Gorkha, etc. are spread over Rangamati, Bandarban and Khagrachari districts.
Rangamati, the land of romance rises from the blue water of the Kaptai Lake. The Kaptai Lake with its splendid setting of lush green landscape and scenic grandeur provides ideal retreat for visitors. A cruise in this famous manmade lake is breath taking and the crystal clear water welcomes you for a swim. The exotic tribal bazar and weaving factory give you different taste of the tribal culture. The hills of Chimbuk in Bandarban is the highest accessible peak by road.
Banderban is the roof of Bangladesh located at Chittagong hill tracts where living verities of ethnic people who are different rest of the flat areas. There are 12 different Tribes living in the Bandarban district. Each tribe has its distinctive rites, rituals and dress. Each tribe also has its own language and cultural pattern. A lot to see in Bandarban it offers you to visit Tribal people’s daily life style, Banderbanis the best place for unique experience to one tribal village to another tribal village through magical hilly landscape.
It is located on the South Eastern part of Bangladesh. Panwa, the yellow flower was its early name. After Lieutenant Cox kept his footprint and administered the area and the name turned to Cox’s Bazar. Having the world’s longest unbroken (120km) beach, sloping gently down to the blue waters of the Bay of Bengal against the picturesque background of a chain of hill covered with deep green forests. The area has the influence of the Rakhaine tribes and there are many Buddhist temples and pagodas. The fish market with variety of sea fish, rare conch shell, the colorful and unique culture & costume of the Rakhaine is a matter of attraction. Moheskhali and Sonadia are the two islands near to Cox’s Bazar and connected by waterways. Maheshkhali is an island with Rakhaine tribes and the Hindu Temple of Adinath on top of a hill. Sonadia a virgin island is more of a fishermen village.
St. Martin’s Island
It is a small Island with a population of about 7/8 thousand people and they depend on fishing directly or indirectly. There are beautiful corals on the south-eastern corner of this island. The water around this Island is emerald green and always invites one to join for a relaxing bath. It will be possible to snorkel here, if you carry your own snorkeling gear. This trip will be tenacious and rough to some extent and participant should note it while joining the trip. From Teknaf around two (2) and half hour boat ride away is the only living coral island in Bangladesh, St. Martin. Snorkeling is possible here to see and enjoy the colorful under water.
Sylhet & Sreemangal
Greater Sylhet the land of two leaves and a bud, the major tea plantation area and the home of the Monipuri, Khasia and Garo tribal people. This is located in the gentle sloping upland in the picturesque valley between the khasia-Jaintia and Tripura hills, amid scenic tea plantation and lush green tropical forest is a prime attraction. Gentle slopes, congenial climate and abundant rainfall made Sylhet one of the largest tea producing area in the world. The Monipuri tribes are famous for their monipuri dance and weaving. Srimongal, on the south of Sylhet is renowned as the tea Capital. Tea gardens are spread over as far as your eyes can view over the slopes and plains like a canvas of green smooth carpet. It can boast of the three largest gardens of the world.
The Sundarbans mangrove forest comprises of 10,000 sq-km of which 6000 sq. km. is in Bangladesh. The area is divided into 55-forest compartment. Each has a land area of 40 to 160 sq. km. and divided into several islands. The area is famous for its semi- aquatic tigers, greatly known as the Royal Bengal Tiger. As per last census around 500 tigers has found in this forest. It has fair amount of spotted deer, wild boar, rhesus monkey, salt-water crocodile, water monitor lizard, pythons etc. The forest treasures 330 plant species, 35 species of reptiles 400 types of fishes, 270 species of birds and 42 species of mammals. UNESCO has declared Sundarbans as world heritage site in 1997 and different protection matter of the forest is under active consideration. There are three wildlife sanctuary areas in Sundarbans.