In & around Dhaka Division
Dhaka, the capital of Bangladesh, is also known as one of the major cities of South Asia. It stands on the bank of the river Buriganga. It is located almost at the center of the country and has an area of nearly 31119 sq km. It has a large population, over 16 million, making it the largest city in Bangladesh and also one of the largest cities in the whole world.
Dhaka Division has 17 districts and 64 municipalities. Dhaka is known as the city of mosque and muslin. For its traditional and cultural riches Dhaka has attracted travelers from all over the world through ages. Dhaka has been developing fast as a modern city. It is the center of industrial, commercial, cultural, educational and political activities for Bangladesh.
Main Tourist Spots in Dhaka Division
Ahsan ManjilAhsan Manzil is one of the significant monuments of the country. It is a very attractive asset of Dhaka not only for its historic significance but mainly for its architectural and aesthetic values. It is also an epitome of the nation’s rich cultural heritage. Ahsan Manjil was built in 1872 and standing on the banks of the Buriganga River. It also has a museum in it and has become one of the most popular tourist attractions of old Dhaka City.
Ahsan Manzil was established on a raised platform of 1 meter, the two-storied palace measures 125.4m by 28.75m. The height of the ground floor is 5 meters and that of the first floor 5.8 meters. There are porticos of the height of the ground floor, both on the northern and southern sides of the palace. An open spacious stairway has come down from the southern portico, extending up to the bank of the river through the front garden. There was once a fountain in the garden in front of the stairs, though it does not exist today. The spacious north and south verandas of both the floors rest on semicircular arches. The verandas and rooms are covered with marble.
Paying a visit to this ancient palace will charm you very much and you feel like you went back to the time when the kings of that time and their associates still were there, and you can hear them, feel them and the ancient trend of this city and its history is transferred to you.
It is open 9 am – 5 pm from Saturday to Wednesday and 3-5 pm on Friday. Thursday is closed.
Lalbagh FortLalbagh Fort, previously known as Fort Aurangzeb, is an incomplete Mughal fortress, standing at the Buriganga River on the southwestern part of Dhaka. Its construction was commenced in 1678 by Prince Muhammad Azam during his 15-month long vice-royalty of Bengal, but before the work could complete, he was recalled by Aurangzeb. His successor, Shaista Khan, did not complete the work, though he stayed in Dhaka up to 1688. His daughter Iran Dukht, famously knon as Pari Bibi (Angel Lady) died here in 1684 and this led him to consider the fort to be ominous.
Lalbagh Fort is also the witness of the revolt of the native soldiers against the British during the Great Rebellion of 1857. As in the Red Fort in India, they were defeated by the force led by the East India Company. They and the soldiers who fled from Meerat were hanged to death at the Victoria Park. In 1858 the declaration of Queen Victoria of taking over the administrative control of India from the Company was read out at the Victoria Park, later renamed Bahadur Shah Park after the name of the last Mughal Emperor who led that greatest rebellion against then British Empire.
Layout of fort:
The fort was long considered to be a combination of three buildings:
1. The Mosque
2. The tomb of Pari Bibi
3.The Diwan-i-Aam, comprising of two gateways and a portion of the partly damaged fortification wall.
Recent excavations carried out by the Department of Archaeology of Bangladesh, however, they have revealed the existence of other structures, and it is now possible to have a more or less complete picture of the fort. In the present fort area of 18 acres (73,000 m²), excavations have revealed the remains of either 26 or 27 structures, with elaborate arrangements for water supply, sewerage, roof gardens, and fountains. Renovation work by the Archaeology Department has now put Lalbagh Fort in a much-improved shape, and it has now become an interesting spot for tourists and visitors.
Mughals are no longer in the world, but visiting the places where they were, like Lalbagh Fort, reminds you of the might and grand they had, they lived in and they enjoyed. Visiting Lalbagh Fort will give you glimpse of that feeling.
It is open 10 am – 5 pm Sunday to Friday, Saturday is closed.
Central Shaheed MinarThe Jatiyo Shaheed Minar, meaning the National Martyrs’ Monument, was established to commemorate the martyrs killed during the Language Movement in 1952. On February 21, 1952, dozens of students and political activists were killed when the Pakistani police force opened fire on Bengali protesters who were demanding equal status to their native tongue, Bangla. The massacre occurred near Dhaka Medical College and Ramna Park in Dhaka. A makeshift monument was erected on February 23 by students of University of Dhaka and other educational institutions, but soon demolished on February 26 by the Pakistani police force. The Language Movement gained momentum and after a long struggle, Bangla was given equal status as Urdu. To commemorate the sacrificed souls, the Shaheed Minar was designed and built by Hamidur Rahman, a famous Bangladeshi sculptor. The monument stood until the Bangladesh Liberation War in 1971, when it was demolished completely by the Pakistani Army during Operation Searchlight. After Bangladesh became independent, it was rebuilt. Today the Shaheed Minar is the center of various cultural activities in Dhaka. Every year, the Language Movement and the ones who sacrificed their lives for it are remembered with great passion at the monument.
Bangladesh National Museum
Bangladesh National Museum is situated at Shahbagh, Dhaka. It holds interesting collections including sculptures and paintings of the Hindu, Buddhist and Muslim periods as well as inscriptions of the Holy Quran in Arabic and Persian letters and Bengali works in the Arabic script.
The museum also has a rich collection of old coins, metal images, books on art, silver filigree works etc. Though established in 1913, it was refurbished and opened in the year 1983. Your mind must be going to the old era when you visit this museum.
It’s open from Friday to Wednesday, 9 am to 6 pm.
Bangabandhu Memorial Museum
Bangabandhu Memorial Museum is situated at Dhanmondi, Dhaka. It was the residence of the first President of Bangladesh, the leader of the liberation movement of Bangldesh and father of the nation, Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman. Later it turned to a museum.
It contains rare collection of personal effects and photographs of his lifetime. This three - storied building known as BangabandhuBhaban. This building turned in to a museum in the year 1997.
It's open 10 am to 6 pm from Thursday to Tuesday. Wednesday is closed.
MuktiJuddha MuseumMuktiJuddha Museum is named after the liberation war (termed as ‘Muktijuddho’ in Bengali ) that took place in 1971.
Muktijuddha Museum is situated at Segun Bagicha. The museum contains rare photographs of liberation war and items used by the freedom fighters during that period.
Science MuseumScience Museum is a modern learning center related to the latest science discoveries. It is situated at Agargaon, Dhaka. It displays a lot of specimens, machines and discoveries in the field of science and technology. Visitors come and enjoy them, and also are instructed about many things there by trained guides.
Jatiya Sangsad Bhaban – Exclusive Tour to the National Assembly BuildingDesigned by the world-renowned American architect Louis Kahn, the Jatiya Sangsad Bhaban (National Assembly Building) is the most notable modern building in Bangladesh. It is regarded by many as the finest work of Kahn. Although the typical bold geometrical patterns are distinctive from the outside, a visit to the interior, including the octagonal Assembly Hall, is a special treat.
Access to the National Assembly is restricted. We arrange exclusive tours to the inside of the famous Parliament building with a minimum of one week prior notice.
Lord Curzon Hall of Dhaka University
Curzon Hall meant to be a town hall, was named after Lord Curzon, the Viceroy of India, who laid its foundation in 1904.
A year later Bengal was partitioned and Dhaka became the capital of the newly created province of East Bengal and Assam. Following the annulment of partition in 1911 it was used as a premise of Dhaka College, and after the establishment of Dhaka University in 1921, became part of the university's science section and continues as such. Laid out in a spacious and carefully maintained garden, this double storied brick building has a large central hall, lateral wings on the east and west with several rooms, and a continuous verandah on all sides.
The Curzon Hall has attained a great significance in the history of the language movement. It was here, in 1948, the students of Dhaka University uttered their first refusal to accept Mohammed Ali Jinnah's declaration that Urdu alone would be the state language of the then Pakistan.
National Zoo, Mirpur, Dhaka, BangladeshThe biggest zoo in Bangladesh is the National Zoo at Mirpur in Dhaka. Established in 1974, the Dhaka Zoo has been developed and improved over the years and is easily the best zoo in Bangladesh. This is one of the most popular places in Dhaka for visiting, not only for the foreign people but also for the Bangladeshi people from all over the country.
The Dhaka Zoo contains a large variety of native and non-native animals. Mammals at the zoo include elephant, panther, rhinoceros, zebra, waterbuck, otter, hyena, deer, giraffes, impala, black bear, tapir, hippo, lion and many different species of monkeys as well as chimpanzees and baboons. The majestic Royal Bengal Tigers are a highlight of the Dhaka Zoo which is one of the best attractions of this Zoo. Many of the animals, including the zebras, giraffes, impalas, hippos, waterbuck and rhinoceros were brought to Bangladesh from South Africa, and have adapted well to their new surroundings. The hippo enclosure contains a sizable lake covered in aquatic greenery that the hippos seem to thoroughly enjoy.
It is open 10 am to 5 pm, 7 days a week.
Botanical GardenBotanical Garden is situated in Mirpur just beside the National Zoo, built on an area of 205 acres of land.
Botanical Garden has a very large variety of botanical riches – it contains approximately 50,000 plants and trees of 1200 species. Main attraction among all these varieties is the rose garden. It is open 7 days a week. If you go this garden, it is advisable to visit the National Zoo at the same time.
Star Mosque and Baitul Mukarram Mosque
Star Mosque is a beautiful mosque of the city, which is situated in Armanitola, Dhaka. It is a five-dome mosque with hundreds of big and small twinkling stars as surface decorations.
The inside of it is even more beautiful than the outside, lovely mosaic floor and excellent tiles with many floral patterns set on the walls - all are in complete harmony.
Baitul Mukarram Mosque is situated at Purana Paltan, east of Bangladesh Secretariat and north of Dhaka Stadium. It is the largest mosque in the city, three storied and built after the pattern of the Kaba Sharif.
It consists of costly decorations in the interior, long lawn, gardens and rows of fountains to the south and east. The mosque is on a very high platform and on the ground floor there is a shopping center.
Dhaka is called the City of Mosques as it consists of thousands of mosques in it. Other notable mosques are the Seven Domed Mosque, Chawkbazar Mosque, Huseni Dalan Mosque and Mosque of Baba Adam.
Churches and Temples
There are two famous churches in Dhaka one is the Armenian Church (1781 A.D.) or St. Mary’s Cathedral at Ramna, and the other one is the Church of Bangladesh or former Holy Rosary Church (1677 A.D.) at Tejgaon.
Dhakeshwari Temple (11th Century) is situated at the place where the old part of Dhaka meets the new part. This is the oldest Hindu temple in Dhaka city. The name Dhakeshwari is also associated with the origin of the name Dhaka.
Birishiri & Durgapur – Exploring the scenic northern border area of BangladeshThe northern border area of Bangladesh has remained virtually untouched by tourism. Yet the beauty of the landscape framed by the Himalayan foothills and the ethnic diversity are well worth a journey. While the access and travel options are limited, the charm of traveling at a leisurely pace by local boat, rickshaw or on foot through the rural areas is an entirely different experience. With our program we combine visits to the most interesting sites with locally adequate travel modes, thereby allowing visitors a unique insight into the natural and cultural diversity of this region.
Dhanbari Royal Resort - A Royal RetreatThe Royal Resort is the first and only Heritage Resort in Bangladesh. Located at Dhonbari, Tangail, the Royal Resort is only a 4 hours driver (150 km) from Dhaka.
This sprawling complex of the resort was the former palace of the Dhanbari Nawabs, Muslim kings or provincial governors of Bengal. These local royalties set up a large number of educational institutions including the University of Dhaka.
You can also visit the Madhupur National Park (1hr drive), a most deciduous old-growth forest with abundant and diverse wildlife.
Jamuna Bridge, also known as Bangabandhu Bridge, is by far the largest andmost spectacular bridge in Bangladesh. It is treated as a tourist spot for the splendid structure it has, the beautiful costruction and of course the scenic beauty of the mighty river Jamuna. It is near Dhanbari Royal Resort, so when you visit the Resort, you can pay a visit to the bridge. This bridge is 4.8 km. long and it is the 11th largest bridge in the world. It is a real beauty at nights when sodium lightens the bridge. Some beautiful resorts have already been established near the bridge to attract tourists to this area.
Village home-stayOver eighty percent of Bangladesh’s population lives in rural areas of the country. Hence a village home-stay offers a deep insight to the ways of life, community, culture and taste of the people of this country in general.
As guests of a local family you will be staying in a traditional home with basic facilities. While sharing their hospitality, you are welcome to join their daily work in and around the house or in the fields, visit the local school, and try your luck at catching fish from the pond or working at the loom. Your guide will facilitate the communication with the villagers. All meals will be prepared by the host family. For your convenience we provide bottled mineral water, bedding and a mosquito net. The accompanying guide will ensure your well-being.
Padma Resort - Louhajong, MunshigonjThe Padma Resort at Louhojong Thana in Munshigonj (2 hours drive from Dhaka) is situated on the Bank of river Padma, so named after this mighty river. If you want a short break from the bustling city of Dhaka, then this is a perfect get-away for you. Upon arrival at the Padma River bank a local boat will take you for the 5 minute crossing to the resort. Upon arrival to the resort you will be welcomed with a light drink.
Your guide will give you brief information about the locality. Enjoy the freshly prepared lunch at the restaurant of the resort. You may also visit some adjacent villages if you want. You will check into your rooms for some rest and freshen up. Later in the afternoon the guide will take you for a walk along the river. You will feel invitation from the river and you may be lured to go for a late swimming which will surely refresh you after the day’s travels!
On the Dhaka - Chittagong highway about 29 km from Dhaka, Sonargaon is one of the oldest capitals of Bengal (previous name of Bangladesh). It was the seat of Deva Dynasty until the 13th century. From that century onward till the advent of the Mughals, Sonargaon was the subsidiary capital of the Sultanate of Bengal.
Another name of Sonargaon was “The City of Panam”. Goaldia Mosque and the Folklore Museum that houses artifacts from every cultural trait of the country increase the attractions of this place. At Jainal Abedin Museum in Sonargaon, you will find a lot of historic and archeological specimens. Among the ancient monuments, still intact ones are the Tomb of Sultan Ghiasuddin (1399-1409 A. D.), the shrines of Panjpirs and Shah Abdul Alia and a beautiful mosque in Goaldivillaae.
National Martyrs' MemorialJatiyo Smriti Soudho or National Martyrs' Memorial is one of the most significant historic monuments in Bangladesh as it is the symbol of the valor and the sacrifice of the martyrs of the Bangladesh Liberation War of 1971. It tells and reminds all the sacrifices made by the martyrs that played the most vital roles to bring the independence of Bangladesh from Pakistani rule.
The monument is located in Savar, about 35 Kilometers north-west of Dhaka. Plans for the monument were initiated in 1972, right after the independence. Following the site selection, road and land development, a nation-wide design competition was held in June, 1978. Following evaluation of the 57 submissions, Syed Mainul Hossain's design was chosen. The main structure and the artificial lake and other facilities were completed in 1982.
This Martyrs Memorial is a symbol of Bengali nationalism, patriotism and sacrifice. It occupies a land of 108 acres and offers real scenic beauty. The monument is composed of 7 isosceles triangular pyramid shaped structures, with the middle one being the tallest. The highest point of the monument is 150 feet. There is an artificial lake, and several mass graves in front of the main monument.
Its open 07 days a week. Beside this monument you can enjoy your foods in Parjatan Restaurant opposite to the memorial gate.
Bhawal National Park
Bhawal National Park is in Gazipur district, 45 km far from Dhaka towards the north direction. It is a vast (1,600 acres) national recreational forest, jungles of Gajari trees are surrounded by a beautiful lake where you can enjoy boating and horse riding. It is a major tourist spot of the country, especially in the winter season, lots of picnic parties enjoy their day in this park. So, it is an attractive tourist spot as well, for the tourists from all over the world.
Bazaars, Boutiques & Bargains – Exclusive Shopping tourWould you like to indulge yourself in extravagant shopping? Are you searching for the perfect souvenir? Are you interested in antiques, jewelry, local clothes, shoes, handicrafts or fair trade products? Let our shopping experts assist you. According to your requirements and desires they will select the best shops, markets or boutiques, ensuring a memorable shopping experience.
For your full or half day shopping tour we will provide air-conditioned transport and an English speaking shopping experts. If you opt for a full day program, lunch at a local restaurant is included in the tour price.
Gajni Parjatan CenterGajni Parjatan Center, 220 km from Dhaka city, welcomes you with its tremendous natural beauty that includes hills, lakes, forest and birds. It is a natural resort where you can enjoy the tribal life of some of the tribes of this country.
The aesthetics are really attractive here, you can enjoy the lake and boating on it and the beautiful waterfall. You can also notice some of the elephants on the forest areas if you are lucky enough.
Other attractions in and around Dhaka include the Institute of Arts and Crafts with its vast collection of folk arts and paintings, handicraft shops. Aparajeya Bangla monument, picnic spots at Chandra and Salna, cruising by country boat in the nearby river or a visit to a village to see jute cultivation, weaving and pottery.
Travel by a horse driven cart or rickshaw along busy Dhaka streets is also a charming experience.
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