- Sarine Arslanian
Located in Chittagong Division, Cox’s Bazar, sometimes referred to as Panowa, is a beautiful seaside town with the longest unbroken sandy beach not just in the country, but in the world. The 75 miles of stunning beach is the main reason that Cox’s Bazar is one of the most famous tourist hot spots in Bangladesh. But there is more to this beautiful fishing town. Aggmeda Khyang is a magnificent Buddhist monastery that tourists can visit. Beautiful local handicrafts and homemade cigars are also a specialty to look out for here from local sellers.
Located relatively close to the current capital city, about 18 miles away, Sonargaon is a former capital of Bangladesh. Different dynastic rulers have contributed to making it a fascinating city, its rich history is reflected in Sonargaon’s historical architecture and culture. Sonargaon is also home to stunning gardens, a great folk arts and crafts museum and the royal palace and is well worth an afternoon’s strolling.
Located in Rajshahi Division, Bogra is one of the oldest and most fascinating towns in Bangladesh. Its many popular attractions bring both foreign and domestic visitors here in ever-increasing numbers. The most interesting place to visit is the ancient archaeological site which dates back to the 3rd century, and is known under the name of Mahasthangarh. The remaining sites are mainly Buddhist, however there are some Hindu and Muslim ones too. Bogra also has a stunning temple and palace to visit too.
A visit to Bangladesh would not be complete without a visit to the cultural, economic, and academic hub of the country: Dhaka, the capital city. It is the center of almost everything going on in Bangladesh, and city’s must-visits include the national memorial, the parliament house, the Pink palace, the Lalbag fort, the Balgha gardens, the Hatir Jheel lake and the Maynamati ruins.
Mymensingh is a stunning city with 200 years of political history and culture. Located by the beautiful Brahmaputa river, Mymensingh offers a range of cultural, historical and natural sites of interest, and some great picnic spots too. Visitors can stroll around the Orchid or Strawberry gardens, head to the adventure park in Gajani, visit historic Jalchhatra oe enjoy a boat ride on the river. The city is also where the renowned handcrafted Nakshikantha, a Bengali quiet, is made.
Sylhet is located along the banks of the Surma River. As one of the most affluent and easily accessible places in Bangladesh, Sylhet attracts a constant flow of visitors coming to enjoy the city’s beautiful natural landscapes including hills, rivers, lakes, tea gardens, rain forest and waterfalls, that surround its pleasant urban areas.
Khulna is the third-largest city in Bangladesh, located close to Chittagong and Dhaka and providing access to the renowned Sundarbans; the biggest mangrove forest in the world; the home of the beautiful Royal Bengal Tiger. Khulna also has one of the oldest ports of the country which travelers can also visit.
Rajshahi is now more of an education and tourism hub, but back in the day, it used to be an important center for silk production, sold all around the world. Visitors still come to Rajshahi, to head to the many state bazaars to buy beautiful silk fabrics today. Rajshahi’s climate is also perfect for growing certain types of fruits, meaning that visitors can indulge in fragrant mangoes and lychees while they are traveling around the city.
Paharpur is a small village, close to the Jamalganj train station, where the remains of an important Buddhist monastery has been excavated. Dating back to the 8th century, this ancient monastery called Somapura Mahavihara spans 27 acres of land and is recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. An on-site museum also displays a collection of objects to give visitors a better picture of what life was like in the early days.
Bandarban is one of the prettiest places in the whole of Bangladesh and is easily accessible from any big city. The lake and waterfall next to it give it a real feeling of serenity. In addition to these stunning natural landscapes, there are numerous Buddhist temples around town. The most important of these is the Buddha Dhatu Jadi, where you’ll find the second biggest Buddha statue in the country.