Bangladesh Tourism


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Places of Interest

The capital of Bangladesh, Dhaka, has an exciting history and rich culture. Known the world over as the city of masques and muslin, it has attracted travellers from tar and near in all ages. It has a history dating back to the earliest time. 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 bustling city of about 7 million people with an area of about 816 sq km.

Having a happy blend of the 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 many industrial, commercial, cultural, educational and political activities in Bangladesh.

Dhaka's major waterfront Sadarghat is on the hank of the river Buriganga and is crowded with all kinds of river craft-yachts, country boats, motor launches, paddle-steamers, fishermen's boats-all bustling with activity. Colourful rickshaws (tricycle) on the city streets are a common sight. Some of the outstanding tourist attractions of Dhaka are

Mosques : 7-domed Mosque (seventeenth century), Baitul Mukarram National Mosque, Star Mosque (eighteenth century) etc.

Hindu's Temples : Dhakeshwari Temple (eleventh century), Ramkrishna Mission etc.

Churches : Armenian Church (1781), St Mary~s Cathedral all Ramna, Church of Bangladesh or the former St Thomas Cathedral Church (1819), The Holy Rosary Church at Tejgaon.

Lalbagh Fort : It was built in 1678 A.D. by Prince Mohammed Azam, son of the Mughal emperor Aurangazeb. The fort was the scene of bloody battle during the first War of Independence (1857) when 260 sepoys stationed there 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 the Hammam of Nawab Shaista Khan, now housing a museum.

1857 Memorial (Bahadur Shah Park) : Built to commemorate the martrys 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 Manjil Museum : On the bank of the river Buriganga in Dhaka the majestic pink Ahsan Manjil has been renovated and turned into a museum recently. It is an epitome of the nation's rich cultural heritage. It was the home of the Nawab of Dhaka and a silent spectator to many events.

Today's renovated Ahsan Manjil 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 displaying portraits, furniture and household articles and utensils used by the Nawab.

Curzon Hall : A beautiful architectural building named after Lord Curzon, a British Viceroy. 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 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 the Dhaka Zoo. One can have a look at the Zoo and the botanical garden on one trip. National Park : Situated at Rajendrapur, 40 miles north of Dhaka City. This is a vast (1,600 acres) national recreational forest with facilities for picnic, rowing etc. Central Shaheed Minar : Symbol of Bangladeshi nationalism. This monument was built to commemorate the martyrs of the historic Language Movement of 1952. Hundreds and thousands of people with wreaths and bouquets gather on 21 February every year to pay respect in a solemn atmosphere. Celebrations begin at midnight. Buddhist Monastery : Kamlapur Buddhist Monastery.

National Poet's Graveyard : National Poet Kazi Nazrul Islam died on August 26, 1978 and was buried here. The graveyard is adjacent to the Dhaka University. Suhrawardy Uddyan (Garden) : Popular Park. The place is famous for its lush green and gentle breeze.

Mausoleum of National Leaders : Located at the south western corner of Suhrawardy Uddyan, it is the resting place of 3 national leaders, Sher-e-Bangla A K Fazlul Haque, Hossain Shahid Suhrawardy and Khwaja Nazimuddin.

Banga Bhaban : The official residence of the President located in the city. One can have an 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 Sheraton Hotel in city centre.

National Assembly : Jatiya Sangsad Bhaban (Parliament House) at Sher-e-Bangla Nagar, designed by the famous architect Louis I. 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 dedicated to the sacred memory of the unknown martyrs of the 1971 War of Independence.

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

Other attractions in and around Dhaka included the Institute of Arts and Crafts for its representative collection of folk art and paintings, handicraft shops, the Aparajeyo Bangla monument, picnic spots at Chandra and Salna, the industrial estates of Tongi, Narayanganj, Demra and Tejgaon, cruising by country boat in the nearby river or 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 could be a rewarding experience.

Sight-seeing tours : Bangladesh Parjatan Corporation (National Tourism Organization) offers conducted sight-seeing tours from its Tourist Information Centre (TIC) at Dhaka Sheraton Hotel (Phone : 509479). Special sight-seeing tours for the transit passengers are also run by the Tourist Information Centre at Dhaka Airport.

River-cruising : Day-long attractive river-cruising is organized in Dhaka by the Bangladesh Parjatan Corporation (BPC) during the tourist season. For booking one may contact Tourist Information Centres in Dhaka or the Manager (Tours), BPC Head Office, Dhaka.

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