I wouldn’t say a visit to the capital of Bangladesh is high on every traveller’s bucket list, yet sandwiched between iconic India and majestic Myanmar, it does have some interesting things to see. I didn’t stay for long in Dhaka – and I certainly didn’t ‘backpack’ – but in the short time I had available to me, I really ticked off a lot of destinations that the city has to offer. Let’s take a look at 10 of the very best:
10. The Dhakeshwari Temple is a Hindu temple located amidst downtown Dhaka, and is often described as the “national temple of Bangladesh”. The name Dhakeshwari means “Goddess of Dhaka”.
9. Sadarghat is located on the banks of the River Buriganga. It is an old port enclave of Dhaka and is actually one of the busiest river ports in the world. There is not for a typical tourist to do here apart from take in the scene and watch how regular Bangladeshis go about their business.
8. New Market is a commercial retail area in Dhaka and is a great place to see local people either plying their trade or shopping for bargains!
7. Shahid Minar is a sombre monument dedicated to people who lost their lives in the Bengali Language Movement of 1952. Amidst the chaos in Dhaka, a surprising amount of mourning occurs here at Shahid Minar.
6. Baldah Garden is a tropical botanical garden in the old parts of Dhaka. It is a great place to get away from the concrete jungle and slums of the city, and if often the site of young courting Bangladeshi couples!
5. Sonargaon is an important regency of Dhaka city that contains a lot of antiquated architecture set amidst beautiful scenery. It is also known as one of Dhaka’s more affluent areas.
4. The Bangladeshi Liberation War Museum is a small but heartfelt collection of memories from the Bangaldeshi Liberation War. Undeniably one of the best war museums on the Sub-continent.
3. The Star Mosque is a resplendent Islamic place of worship and is decorated with thousands of tiny blue stars on its ornate exterior. Entry to the mosque is free for foreigners.
2. Lalbagh Fort is an incomplete 17th century Mughal palace that could easily be sitting in popular Indian cities like Agra or Jaipur. This is probably Dhaka’s most popular tourist attraction and it is not hard to understand why!
1. The National Martyrs’ Monument is dedicated to the Bangladesh Liberation War of 1971, during which Bangladesh regained its independence from Pakistan. The monument is located outside downtown Dhaka (45 minutes drive, on a good day), but it remains one of the country’s best tourist attractions.
The featured image used in this article is courtesy of the Financial Times.