A journey through the most spectacular places in Bangladesh (guided tour)

I have spent about a month in Bangladesh exploring and photographing the hidden treasures of this spectacular country, which makes me confident in offering you this tour (my Bangladesh photo galleries).

The group will meet at the hotel in Dhaka, Bangladesh. For one day, we will explore this thriving, colourful and crowded metropolis. Experiencing the city for the first time is a first-class adventure, especially for photographers. In the evening, we head to Sadarghat or the river port, which is one of the most impressive in the world and the top attraction of Dhaka. We board a rocket paddle steamer or launch and cruise overnight to the city of Hularhat. This will be one of the highlights of the tour.

In the area, we visit the tomb of Khan Jahan and the crocodile pond, the “Sixty Dome Mosque” and the town of Mongla on the edge of the Sundarbans (UNESCO) – a deltaic mangrove area formed by the confluence of the Ganges, Brahmaputra and Meghna Rivers in the Bay of Bengal. We reach Karamjal Wildlife Center, where we will have the opportunity to walk through the mangrove forest with a local guide. Most likely, we will not see Bengal Tiger, but we will see monkeys, dolphins, crocodiles and deer.

Then we continue to Khulna, from where we drive to Sreemangal, the “Tea Capital of Bangladesh”. One day is dedicated to the magnificent tea plantations and the villages of the local Tripura, Garo or Khashi tribes. We will also visit a tea factory and the tea museum.

We continue our journey to Chittagong, the second-largest city in Bangladesh. We will have a sightseeing tour, visit a traditional shipyard, and sail among the huge ships on the Karnaphuli River.

One day will be dedicated to the Chittagong Hill Tracts, the only hilly area in Bangladesh, Kaptai Lake with its numerous floating markets, a waterfall, and beautiful lakeshores dotted with small fishing villages. We will take a short walk through the city centre of Rangamati with its fish markets and colourful buildings.

The tour ends in Dhaka, from where we fly back home.

BASIC INFORMATION

Category: Thousand Voyages Guided Small Group Tours

Dates: 1-12 February 2022; If you are a group of at least 4 or 5, we can arrange this trip for dates that suit you or get on a list of future trips.

Duration: 11 nights / 12 days;

Group: 6 people (max 8 people);

Price: 1,395 euro / person (group of 6 people);

Included in the price are a tour guide (me), a local guide, transportation in Bangladesh; eleven nights’ accommodation with breakfast in regular hotels (3 or 4-star) in double/twin rooms with private bathrooms (if you want a single room, please note this when booking); the night river cruise from Dhaka to Hularhat; the excursion within the Sundarbans; entrance tickets to places of interest.

Not included in the price are the air tickets to/from Dhaka (Bangladesh) (1); visa (2); lunch and dinner (3); personal travel insurance (4); airport transfers (will be arranged individually); personal expenses and gratuities.

 

Organisation/ Tour leader: I (Pavel) lead and organise this tour through my Travel Agency, “Thousand Voyages”, with the help of my local partner. I have led tours in more than 25 countries. I have spent about a month in Bangladesh exploring and photographing the hidden treasures of this spectacular country, which makes me confident in offering you this tour (my Bangladesh photo galleries). My team and I will take care of everything related to the trip such as arranging air tickets from your home, necessary insurance and other details. Please read the FAQ .

Photography: although this tour is not a photography workshop, we will spend time taking photos. I am happy to share my knowledge and photography techniques and take extra time for photo sessions, especially in spectacular locations with great photo opportunities. After each tour, I share the images from the tour with all participants. Please check out my Pakistan Portfolio here.

(1) We will arrange your air tickets individually and add the total to the final price.

(2) Bangladesh visa is dependent on your nationality. We will help you with the necessary information and/or documents if required.

(3) The food in Bangladesh is very cheap.

(4) We provide personal travel and health insurance service depending on your residence. We recommend that you also purchase “trip cancellation” or “cancellation for any reason” insurance. Options vary so please contact us to find out more.

Departure/ Arrival Locations: The tour starts and ends at our hotel in Dhaka, Bangladesh (Asia Hotel & Resorts). I (the tour guide) and probably some of the other group participants will fly from Istanbul Airport, so you can join us there as well. We can arrange your travel from your home directly to Dhaka. We will let you know the exact flight times individually depending on your departure point.

PROGRAM

Day 1 Arrival in Dhaka

We will arrange flights from your home to Dhaka, Bangladesh, so the group will meet at the hotel in the capital of Bangladesh. Airport transfers will also be arranged for everyone. I (Pavel), the tour guide and maybe some other group members will fly from Istanbul, so you can also join us at Istanbul airport. Once the group is assembled, you will receive further instructions and information about the hotel’s name and other essential details. Overnight stay in Dhaka, Bangladesh.

Hotel: Asia Hotel & Resorts (3 stars) or similar (photos of the hotel).

Day 2 Dhaka; cruise to Hularhat city

Today is all about Dhaka, the capital of Bangladesh.

Dhaka is a thriving, colourful and crowded metropolis of 20 million people, one of the most exciting places in the world. There is colourful chaos on the streets and in the rivers. Dhaka is also the “rickshaw capital of the world”, with around 400,000 or more. Experiencing the city for the first time is an adventure in a class of its own, especially for photographers.

We will slowly walk through the old part of the city, known as Old Dhaka or Old Town, which houses a wide range of architectural heritage, from the remains of the Mughal Empire to the British Colonial buildings. We will lose ourselves in Hindu Street, which is the Hindu heart of the city.

In the evening, we will go to Sadarghat or the river port, which is one of the most impressive in the world and the top attraction of Dhaka.

We will board a rocket paddle steamer or launch and sail overnight to the town of Hularhat. This would be one of the most scenic and remarkable river cruises you will ever experience. The ships, the atmosphere on board, the exotic scenery of the rivers and canals are fantastic and truly unique. We will have 2nd class double cabins – not luxurious, but comfortable enough. If we are lucky, we can board a genuine Rocket paddle steamer (now diesel) that has been plying the rivers of Bangladesh since the early 20th century. Overnight stay on the ship.

Please note that if there is no possibility to take the ship, we will use our private van to reach Hularhat and then Mongla.

Day 3 Arrival at Hularhat; the tomb of Khan Jahan and the crocodiles; the “Sixty Dome Mosque”; Mongla

In the morning we will arrive at Hularhat where our private bus will be waiting for us.

The first stop will be the tomb of Khan Jahan Ali near the famous lake with crocodiles.

Next, we will visit “The Sixty Dome Mosque”, part of the Mosque City of Bagerhat, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It is the largest mosque in Bangladesh from the Sultanate period, built during the Bengal Sultanate by Ulugh Khan Jahan, the governor of the Sundarbans.

We drive through the villages enjoying the exquisite bucolic scenery on the way to the small town of Mongla, where we check into the best hotel in the area, the Pashur (TripAdvisor review and hotel photos), a great, clean and well-run hotel.

Day 4 Sundarbans (UNESCO)

Sundarbans (UNESCO) is a deltaic mangrove area formed by the confluence of the Ganges, Brahmaputra and Meghna Rivers in the Bay of Bengal. It includes closed and open mangrove forests, agricultural land, mudflats and wastelands, and is crossed by several tidal streams and channels.

We take a boat from Mongla pier for a 2 to 3-hour ride into the Sandarburn. We reach Karamjal Wildlife Center, where we have the opportunity to walk through the mangrove forest while listening to our local guide talk about the biodiversity of the area. Most likely, we will not see Bengal Tiger, but we will see monkeys, dolphins, crocodiles and deer. In the afternoon, we will be back in Mongla, where we will have a late lunch at the hotel restaurant before continuing to Khulna. Overnight stay in a hotel in Khulna.

Hotel: Pushpo Bilash Hotel or similar (3 stars) (photos of the hotel).

Day 5 Return to Dhaka

Today is a slow drive back to Dhaka, with stops at local villages, farms and vast rice fields. These parts of the country are idyllic and tranquil, giving the impression that time has stopped somewhere in the middle of the last century. In the evening, we arrive at our hotel in Dhaka. Overnight stay in Dhaka.

Hotel: Asia Hotel & Resorts (3 stars) or similar (photos of the hotel).

Day 6 From Dhaka to Srimangal, the “Tea Capital of Bangladesh”

After breakfast at the hotel, we drive to the city of Srimangal – “Tea Capital of Bangladesh”, which is about 4 hours away from Dhaka. After checking in at the hotel, we will take our first stroll through the colourful streets and markets in the city centre. Later we will have dinner at a local restaurant and do some more strolling if the group wants to. Overnight stay in Srimangal.

Hotel: Grand Selim Resort & Tour – GSRT (3 stars) or similar (photos of the hotel).

Day 7 Tea Plantations and the local tribes

We will dedicate this day to the tea plantations that make this region so famous.

There are about 150 tea plantations in the area, covering 41,000 hectares. The excellent climate, cheap labour and generally the absence of significant conflict in the region have contributed to the development and prosperity of this industry. The tea produced here is very high quality, which is why the place is also known as the “Tea Capital of Bangladesh”.

In the region, we will also visit a tea factory and the tea museum.

We will also visit some villages of the local Tripura, Garo or Khashi tribes. You will be immersed in an extraordinary authentic atmosphere and will have the opportunity to take unique photos of the life and traditions of the local people.

For example, in the villages of the Khashi tribe, we will have the opportunity to learn about the practices of betel cultivation, for which the people of this tribe are famous. Overnight stay in Sreemangal.

Hotel: Grand Selim Resort & Tour – GSRT (3 stars) or similar (photos of the hotel).

Day 8 Transfer to Chittagong

Today we will head for Chittagong. Of course, we will stop at various places, small villages or just scenic spots on the way. We will arrive in Chittagong in the evening.

Hotel: Well Park Residence Boutique Hotel & Suites (4 stars) or similar.

Day 9 The Chittagong Hill Tracts; the town of Rangamati; boat trip on Kaptai Lake

The Chittagong Hill Tracts is the only extensively hilly area in Bangladesh and one of the least developed parts of Bangladesh.

Today we will drive to Rangamati town in the Chittagong Hill Tracts. We will take a walk in the town centre, but the main reason to come here is to take a boat ride on Kaptai Lake to Shuvalong Falls (90 minutes one way). This modest waterfall is little more than a trickle most of the year, but the boat ride there is fabulous. First, we cross the vast expanse of the main lake. Then, we enter an area of islands covered in banana plants we pass through a dramatic gorge. We will see many floating bazaars where we will spend time taking pictures or buying fruit. In the evening, we will drive back to Chittagong.

Please note that a special permit is required for all foreign tourists visiting the Chittagong Hill Tracts. We will arrange this permit, but if this is not possible, we will offer another program for that day around Chittagong.

Hotel: Well Park Residence Boutique Hotel & Suites (4 star) or similar (photos of the hotel).

Day 10 Chittagong

Today we will take a sightseeing tour of the old city Chittagong, home to several historic mosques, Sufi shrines and other notable sites.

We will also visit a shipyard here and get a glimpse of the old way of shipbuilding. We will have the opportunity to take photos and talk to the shipbuilders.

We can take a boat ride among the old ships anchored in the Karnaphuli River, the largest and most important river in Chittagong and the Chittagong Hill Tracts.

We will drive slowly on the Naval Road to Patenga Beach, a sandy beach at the meeting point of the roaring sea and the river Karnaphuli. Overnight stay in Chittagong.

Hotel: Well Park Residence Boutique Hotel & Suites (4 stars) or similar (photos of the hotel).

Day 11: Back to Dhaka

Today we drive back to Dhaka, where we will arrive in the afternoon. Today we have time for shopping, sightseeing or photography. Overnight stay in Dhaka.

Hotel: Asia Hotel & Resorts (3 stars) or similar (photos of the hotel).

Day 12 Departure from Dhaka, Bangladesh

 Transfers will be arranged for each participant according to their flight time.

PHOTO SLIDESHOW

Bangladesh photo-galleries from my photo archive

GET IN TOUCH OR BOOK THIS JOURNEY

Booking: Please use the form below or other contact method to ask questions and/or book this tour. We will get back to you as soon as possible. Once we agree on all the details, we will put you on the list.

Payment: We do not collect a deposit at the time of booking. Once the tour is confirmed (the group is full), we require a 50% deposit + the amount for airfare if included. The balance is due at least three weeks before the departure date.

Payment methods: 1) PayPal – You will receive a PayPal invoice with the total amount. You can pay with your credit card or PayPal account; 2) A Revolut Business Account (in Euro) for a bank transfer.

 

Cancellation: If you cancel the tour less than seven days before the departure date, the loss for you is 85% of the tour price. We recommend that you take out insurance “Trip Cancelation” or “Cancelation for any reason”. These depend on your specific case, so please contact us for more information.

Travel Documents, which you will receive: the program with all the necessary details in PDF; an invoice; a contract; airline tickets (if included); an insurance document (if included) and any other required documents such as a visa (if we arrange it), etc.

Please read the FAQ for more details.

ALL ARTICLES FROM BANGLADESH

A girl from Bangladesh

I took the photo on a trip to the fishing villages around Barisal, Bangladesh. There were literally thousands of children running around and everyone wanted

Boy drinks tea

I took this photo in May 2010 in a shipyard in Chittagong, Bangladesh. The workers were resting, drinking tea or smoking. This boy saw me