Nestled in South Asia, Bangladesh is a land of vibrant culture, lush landscapes, and a rich tapestry of history.
Often overshadowed by its more popular neighbouring countries, Bangladesh has much to offer for intrepid travellers seeking unique and authentic experiences.
With diverse geography ranging from the longest natural sea beach in the world at Cox’s Bazar to the serene tea gardens of Srimangal, Bangladesh offers a rich tapestry of landscapes, each with its own distinct charm.
With shared borders and a host of transport options, travelling to Bangladesh from India is generally relatively straightforward. You can easily apply for your Bangladesh visa online, which takes just 7 to 8 Business days to process.
Just choose the purpose of your trip- tourism or business, and apply. The standard sticker visa allows Indian citizens to stay in the country for 90 days.
15 must-try activities in Bangladesh
In this guide, we’ll delve into 15 must-try activities and experiences that will make your journey through Bangladesh truly unforgettable-
1. Discover the Sundarbans Mangrove Forest
A UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Sundarbans is the largest mangrove forest in the world and the last stronghold of the Royal Bengal Tiger.
Exploring the dense mangrove swamps on a boat safari offers a thrilling opportunity to see these elusive big cats in their natural habitat.
Take a guided boat tour to explore this unique ecosystem, spot wildlife, and immerse yourself in the serene beauty of the region.
2. Cruise the Mighty Rivers
Bangladesh is often referred to as the “Land of Rivers” due to its intricate river network. A river cruise on the Padma, Jamuna, or Meghna rivers offers a peaceful and picturesque way to witness rural life, lush landscapes, and vibrant riverine culture.
Keep your eyes peeled for river dolphins, known as the Ganges River Dolphin. You can also stop by riverside villages to get a glimpse of authentic rural life in Bangladesh.
3. Explore Cox’s Bazar Beach
As the longest natural sea beach in the world, Cox’s Bazar offers a stunning stretch of golden sands along the Bay of Bengal.
You can watch the sunrise, watch fishermen at work, or simply relax under the shade of colorful umbrellas.
The beach comes to life in the evening with food vendors and beachside activities. Cox’s Bazar is renowned for its seafood.
Don’t miss the opportunity to savor delicious dishes made with fresh catches from the Bay of Bengal. Hilsa fish, prawn, and crab dishes are local specialties.
4. Visit Srimangal’s Tea Gardens
Known as the “Tea Capital of Bangladesh,” Srimangal boasts lush tea gardens where you can witness the tea-making process, savor a cup of the finest brew, and explore the beautiful landscapes.
Srimangal is not just about tea. It’s also home to the Lawachara National Park, which is known for its diverse flora and fauna. Take a trek through the forest to spot various bird species, including the hoolock gibbons, and immerse yourself in the beauty of nature.
5. Sample Authentic Bangladeshi Cuisine
Bangladeshi cuisine is a delightful blend of flavors. Be sure to try local dishes like biryani, Hilsa fish curry, and pitha (rice cakes). The street food scene, especially in Dhaka, is a culinary adventure in itself. Moreover, Chittagong offers seafood delights. Don’t forget to try Mezban Biryani, a spicy beef biryani, and Kala Bhuna, a famous beef dish cooked with black spices.
Throughout Bangladesh, you’ll find street food stalls offering a wide range of snacks and sweets. Don’t hesitate to try popular items like jhalmuri (spicy puffed rice), chotpoti (spicy chickpea salad), and pitha (rice cakes).
6. Explore the Ancient City of Paharpur
Visit the ancient Buddhist Vihara of Paharpur, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and explore the ruins of a once-thriving center of learning and culture.
Paharpur Museum, located nearby, houses a collection of artifacts and sculptures discovered at the site. It provides historical context and allows visitors to gain a deeper understanding of the area’s significance.
7. Stroll Through Lalbagh Fort
In Dhaka, explore the historic Lalbagh Fort, which dates back to the Mughal era. The fort complex includes a mosque, a tomb, and a beautiful garden, making it a must-visit for history enthusiasts.
8. Experience the Chaos of Dhaka
Dhaka, the capital city, is a bustling metropolis that may overwhelm your senses. Explore the vibrant markets, try local street food, and witness the energy of this dynamic city.
9. Visit the Sixty Dome Mosque
Also known as Shat Gombuj Masjid, this 15th-century mosque in Bagerhat is an architectural marvel. With its 60 domes and intricate terracotta designs, it’s a testament to the country’s rich history.
The mosque’s grand prayer hall, adorned with pillars and domes, offers a sense of spiritual grandeur. It’s a place where you can connect with the spirituality and history of the region.
10. Marvel at the Ratnodweep Islands
Located in the southern part of Bangladesh, the Ratnodweep Islands are known for their serene beaches and crystal-clear waters, making them a hidden paradise for beach lovers.
11. Explore the Hill Tracts
The Chittagong Hill Tracts, with their lush green hills, tribal communities, and unique culture, offer a different side of Bangladesh. Hike through the hills and visit tribal markets.
12. Pay Homage at Mahasthangarh
One of the earliest urban archaeological sites in Bangladesh, Mahasthangarh holds historical relics, ancient ruins, and fascinating stories dating back to the 3rd century BC.
Explore the extensive archaeological ruins, including the ancient city walls, fortifications, citadels, and palace structures. You can witness the remains of an advanced urban center that thrived in ancient times.
13. Attend a Traditional Boat Race
Witness the excitement of traditional boat races held on the country’s numerous rivers. The vibrant colors and festive atmosphere create a memorable experience.
14. Shop at the Floating Guava Market
In the city of Swarupkathi, you can visit the unique floating guava market on the river, where local farmers sell fresh guavas directly from their boats.
15. Visit the Varendra Research Museum
Located in Rajshahi, this museum houses an impressive collection of historical artifacts, sculptures, and manuscripts, offering insights into the region’s history and culture.
Bangladesh, with its diverse landscapes, rich history, and warm hospitality, is a destination that rewards travelers willing to explore its hidden treasures.
Whether you’re cruising through its rivers, savoring local delicacies, or exploring ancient archaeological sites, Bangladesh has something to offer every kind of traveler.
So, pack your bags, embrace the unknown, and embark on a journey to discover the wonders of this enchanting country.