Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Travel in Bangladesh

Travel in Bangladesh

Bangladesh’s river journeys make for an excellent way to see the sights, as do voyages along the sprawling stretches of beach, which overlook the Bay of Bengal. With almost no mountains, the Chittagong Hill Tracts and Sylhet are popular with trekkers and explorers, whilst the capital city, Dhaka, allows for visits to museums and countless dining options.
Bangladesh offers visitors a wealth of opportunity to discover temples, wildlife, infinite beaches, forests and tea plantations.

Shoppers need not be disappointed; Bangladeshi handicrafts on offer range from brass work and pottery, to pink pearls and finely woven cotton muslin – all long treasured since Roman times. The newspaper headlines may have dismissed Bangladesh as a land beset with problems, but it is a remarkably optimistic country with great diversity, both within it’s population and it’s landscape. As one of the world’s youngest nations Bangladesh has a survivor spirit, a curious and highly hospitable people and genuine potential for adventure.

Bangladesh at a glance
  • Full country name: People's Republic of Bangladesh
  • Area: 143,998 sq km (55,598 sq mi)
  • Population: 129 millions (2001 estimate)
  • Capital city: Dhaka
  • People: Majority Bengali; minoritie: Bihari and tribal
  • Language: Bangla, English
  • Religion: Majority Islam; others are Hindu, Buddhist and Christian
  • Government: Constitutional Republic
  • Major industries: Jute manufacturing, cotton textiles, food processing, steel, fertilizer, rice, jute, tea, wheat, sugarcane, potatoes, beef, milk, poultry
  • Major trading partners: Western Europe, US, Hong Kong, Japan, India, China, Singapore
Physical Geography
Bangladesh is situated on the north eastern side of the South Asian Subcontinent. Her long southern coastline along the Bay of Bengal shares the Indian Ocean with India and Myanmar. It is bordered on the West by the two Indian states of West Bengal and Bihar and on the East by Assam and Myanmar. The plains of Bangladesh are watered by a network of rivers including Padma, Meghna, Brahmaputra and Jamuna. The Hills, which are located in Sylhet and the Hill Tracts Districts, are mostly low hills covered with green forests.

Time to go
The best time to visit Bangladesh is in the cold season from October to February when the weather is fresh, dry and cool. Avoid March to May when humidity and heat shot up to make conditions unbearable for many tourists.

Traveler tips
  • Visas: Bangladesh visas are valid for six months from the date of issue and are good for stays of one or three months.
  • Health risks: Cholera, dysentery, hepatitis, malaria and meningococcal meningitis
  • Time: GMT/UTC plus six hours
  • Electricity: 220 volts, 50Hz
  • Weights and measures: Metric (kilogram, gram; cemtermeter, meter)
Money matters
Local currency is "Taka".
Bangladesh is a cheap country if you want to keep your travel cost low. However the quality of budget food, accommodation and travel is also low. There are middle to first range accommodations available in many tourist destinations.

Cash and travelers cheques in US dollars are widely accepted. Credit cards are accepted at middle to high class hotels, guesthouses and restaurants in Dhaka and Chittagong.

Getting in and out
There are plenty of international flights to and from Dhaka international airport. Especially from south Asian countries.

Overland crossing with India are at Benopol-Haridispur (on the Calcutta route); Chilihari-Haldibari (on the Darjeeling route); and Tamabil-Dawki (on the Shillong route). These border check points can sometimes be closed to third country nationals. Please check with the local tour operators.

Overland routes to and from Myanmar is not available.

More information
  • www.virtualbangladesh.com Virtual Bangladesh 
  • www.bangladeshgov.bd.com
  • www.bangladesh.net
  • www.bangladeshgov.org/bdmaps Government web site with information including maps of Bangladesh in south Asia, administrative units, transport network, rivers, physical, soil, population density, tourist centers, Dhaka city, Chittagong city, Khulna city, Rajshahi city.
  • Bangladesh Web Directory Bangladeshi Web directory - Bangla, Bangladesh, Bangladeshi, Probashi Bangladeshi websites.