Day 1: Dhaka arrival and a slow orientation to the city
Upon arrival at Dhaka airport, meet and greet your guide and transfer to a hotel in the Gulshan area (diplomatic zone). Depending on your available time, your guide will propose some activities around. Night stay at a hotel in Gulshan/ Banani.
Day 2: Excursion to first capital; Sonargaon Cruise on Meghna River & primitive life of rural Char Village
Pick up at 8:30 AM from your place and leave Dhaka for Sonargaon. On the way, visit Nawapara Jamdani saree weaving village. Here, the magic fingers are weaving traditional Jamdani sari, an incredible artwork recognized by UNESCO, unfortunately disappearing! Drive towards the old capital of Bengal - Sonargaon for another 20 minutes.
Sonargaon was the countries first capital, about 30km southeastern direction besides the Dhaka Chittagong highway. The 'Golden City' was also an important river port and the trading centre for the world-famous muslin cloth in its prime time. The remains of many mosques, tombs, stupas and a bridge in Panam Nagar, the Shiv Mandir (Hindu temple) and the well-maintained Folk-Art Museum are well worth visiting. Lunch will be served at a local restaurant in the Sonargaon area and continue drive to Buiddyer Bazar. Here we take a country boat for a couple of hours cruise on the Meghna (One of the major rivers in Bangladesh, came from India) River. I am sure that you will be very interested in exploring the primitive Char village life. Char is a temporary sandy island formed by river erosion and sedimentation. There are thousands of chars in Bangladesh up from the northern part till to the south coast. This char can be disappeared by flood, high tide or by any natural disaster or so. Lives in the char are minimal; access to medical and education is very tough, impossible in some areas. Return home late in the afternoon. Overnight at the same hotel in Dhaka.
Day 3: Exciting Old Dhaka walk, meeting people; experience life and culture
This is an elaborate trip to Old Dhaka; Old Dhaka is a place where you can spend a couple of days walking on the streets. Be ready to take pictures, meeting friendly people, walk through heritage sites, and learn their culture. We will come to pick you up with a reserved vehicle from your place at 8 AM. This tour takes you to the heart of Dhaka. Sadarghat (Riverfront), shipbuilding yard, Armenian Church, Pink Palace, Star Mosque, Dhakeswari Temple, Lalbagh Fort, Curzon Hall, a local garments factory, few Hindu streets (Shankharia & Tanti Bazar), carpenter street, bicycle Street and Bongshal residential area would be our excursion route. A rickshaw ride is an option instead of walking. We would offer you a short cruise on the Burigonga River by country boat, an incredible experience. We will invite you for typical lunch at a local restaurant (simple but nice and clean). We shall get back to your hotel by late in the afternoon.
Day 4: Past Glory, Present Development – trip to pottery and brass artisan villages
Leave Dhaka at 7:30 AM for Manikganj, located about 70 km from Dhaka. Drive to Baliati palace Museum. A twenty-minute walk through the picturesque landscape brings you to some of the abandoned Hindu palaces in the nearby village. Dipping into the rural and peaceful village life. Visit the Eshore Chandra High School – the first certified high school in East Bengal. Then, continue driving towards Dhamrai for famous brass artisans and pottery village excursions. During the Bengali month of Ashar (June-July), the colourful Hindu festival 'Ratha Jatra' take place here. The large 'Rath', similar to a Roman chariot, can be seen throughout the year. Lunch will be served at a local restaurant on the way. The tour will continue to Nayarhat, where you will leave the vehicle and take a short boat journey to Kakran. Here most villagers are engaged in the pottery trade.
After returning to the vehicle, we will head back towards Dhaka. Overnight stay at your hotel.
Day 5: Morning flight to Sylhet and afternoon City sightseeing
According to your flight time, you will pick up from your place and transfer to the domestic airport for a flight to Sylhet. Welcome to Sylhet – the holly city. After the check-in formalities and a bit of rest, we would invite you on a city sightseeing. Today's excursion will include a visit to the holly Mausoleum of Hazrat Shah Zalal- who has brought Islam to this part of Bangladesh. Walking along with the Keane's Bridge neighbourhood and the old marketplace is interesting. In such a little place, so many things are happening simultaneously, which is fascinating to observe. Enjoy the sunset from the Keane's bridge over the Shurma River. It is nice to walk around the worker's residential colony, just on the other side of the Shurma River. Meeting friendly people is always lovely, learning their life stories can be a lesson for a lifetime. (These are just ideas of what we think you will be interested in! Please discuss with your guide what exactly you are interested to see. He has the right to make necessary adjustments on the itinerary to make the trip nicer). Overnight at the hotel (Shuktara/ Rose view/ Metro/ Nazimgarh resort) in Sylhet.
Day 6: Enchanting hilly area and a beautiful cruise on Lalakhal
After breakfast, start for a full day excursion around Jaflong and Tamabil. Located amidst a splendid panorama, Tamabil is a border outpost on the Sylhet – Shillong Road (55 km from Sylhet City centre). Sights of the waterfalls over the hilly zone across the border add to the charming views. Jaflong is a picturesque spot nearby amidst tea estates and the beauty of rolling stones from hills. The hardship of primitive stone collector's is a darkness behind the beauty. We should probably meet these people and listen to their daily life struggles before complaining about our lives.
After lunch at a local restaurant in Jaflong, drive to Lalakhal to enjoy a scenic and refreshing country boat cruise. Drive back to Sylhet town to avail your flight/ train/ bus/ reserved vehicle to Dhaka.
Day 7: Sylhet to Sreemangal
Check out from your hotel and drive (2.5 hours) to Sreemangal by reserved car. Upon arrival, check-in at hotel Grand Sultan. Enjoy the natural surroundings and hotel amenities till late noon. Your guide will offer you some activities; visiting tribal villages, Bazar or hiking through the tea estates and fruit plantations. Overnight stay at hotel Grand Sultan Tea Resort. (you can also skip activities for this afternoon and just relax in the resort and enjoy nature)
Day 8: Lawacharra National Park, Khashia Tribal village, bird watching trip to Baikka Beel
Your local guide will offer you a rewarding wildlife trek through the nearby Lawacharra National Park. Early morning is a good time to explore the abundant and diverse wildlife. The Lawacharra forest is one of the last remaining tropical rainforests of the country and home to many endangered and rare species; Hollock Gibbons are one of the most prominent. A few hours tract through the dense forests is heaven for birdwatchers, naturalists and adventure seekers alike. After lunch, drive to Baikka Beel – a permanent wetland and bird sanctuary. Depending on the seasons, we offer either a boat trip (Summertime: April to September) on this marshland or birdwatching (winter time: October to March) and a nature enjoying trip.
It is a beautiful marshland where thousands of lilies and lotus bloom. Birdwatchers and nature lovers have begun frequenting it. An observation tower promises the visitors a good view of the beel, its residents and winter visitors. During the winter season, many migratory birds find their nesting ground at this place. Among many migratory birds, some species have found their home here for living & nesting permanently.
Please note that around 3km road just before the wetland is in lousy condition, difficult to access by sedan cars but no problem for 4X4 driven vehicle (Jeep) or even minivans. Either we have to walk three kilometres or drive by a 4 X 4 vehicle (rainy season).
Drive back to the resort for dinner and overnight stay.
Day 9: Sreemangal to Dhaka by Train
You will be transferred to the train station according to your train ETD. Have a pleasant train journey to Dhaka. Upon arrival at Dhaka Train Station, you will be transferred to your hotel in the Diplomatic Zone.
Here is the Sreemangal to Dhaka train timetable:
Train Schedule between Sylhet (ZYL) - Dhaka Airport Train Station (ATS) and Dahak, Kamalapur Station (KRS):
Day 10: Dhaka to Barisal by day Launch; Crossing over the Ganges delta
Leave your hotel at 6:15 AM for Sadarghat River Port by reserved vehicle. Embark on Greenline catamaran day launch (ETD 8:00, ETA 14:30) Barisal. In a normal situation, it takes about 5/6 hours to get there. It is a memorable journey through the Bengal River delta. Hotel Grand Park is about 5 minutes' driving distance by rickshaw from Barisal River Terminal. After having lunch at the hotel's restaurant (the best in town), walk around the old Bazar and township area of Barisal, accompanied by a local guide. Overnight stay at Hotel Grand Park.
Day 11: Full day Back Water Trip by local boat- endless impression about the nature, riverine life and culture
Leave the hotel at 6 AM for Banaripara (40KM/ 1 hour) by reserved vehicle. Here we embark on a country boat for a daylong backwater trip. Exploring life, people and their daily activities watching from the boat is charming. We will get off in some interesting village marketplaces and Schools in the rural area. There are some weekly floating vegetables, fruits, and timber markets on our route. Spectacular to see how the manual labourers load and unload all the giants' logs just by hand. The cruise is for 5/6 hours, but the impression is endless. There will be sufficient drinking water, light snacks, local fruits and tea/coffee on the boat, and enjoy a lovely lunch with a local family in a nearby village. Walk around the village explore the local craftsmanship and rural life. Otherwise, you can also visit some modern and ancient architecture before driving back to your hotel in Barisal. We will have a short walk through an interesting fish market. Dinner and overnight stay in Barisal.
Day 12: Bagerhat – the city of past glory and magical mangrove forest Sundarbans
Leave Barisal after breakfast at your hotel for Bagerhat by reserved vehicle (5hours). The Historic Mosque City of Bagerhat is an ancient city, formerly known as Khalifatabad, founded by the Turkish general Ulugh Khan Jahan in the 15th century. This city contains some of the most significant Muslim architecture of the initial period. Welcome to the marvellous sixty-domed mosque – a UNESCO World Heritage Site and the mausoleum of Khan Jahan Ali. Continue a scenic drive to Mongla by reserved vehicle and embarking the houseboat for the Sundarban trip ( or spend the night at the Pashur Motel, Mongla)
Pashur Is a very basic category hotel, owned and maintained by the government, better security and the rooms are cleaned with airconditioning and attached bath facilities.
Houseboat -is not a luxury but has enough spaces, delicious local foods, rooms, bathroom (dining area on the upper deck), some crew and guards' rooms on the backside of the boat. The boat is nice and clean for a couple of days.
Day 13 - Sundarbans – Forest between Land and Sea
The boat shall start its cruise towards the south for a couple of hours. The boat will anchor at a forest station to complete the necessary forest permission and pick up some forest armed guards to accompany us during our stay in Sundarban. Depending on the tides and weather, the ship will be cruising through the mangrove forest. Reach Kotka/ Kochikhali Forest Range station (southeast) late in the afternoon. If we are allowed by daylight, your guide will offer you some exploratory rowboat cruise through a narrow mangrove to catch a glimpse of the unique flora and fauna.
All meals and overnight stay on board.
Day 14 - Sundarbans – The Beautiful Forest
After an early morning excursion on the small boat, you are invited to join an easy hike along the sea-facing beach. With the mangrove forest on one side and the Bay of Bengal on the other, how seasonal and climate-induced changes shape this ever-changing forest becomes apparent. The boat will meet you on the other end of the walk near the Kotka Forest Station. This is the ranger station in the Eastern Sanctuary, one of the three Sundarbans sanctuaries with UNESCO World Heritage Site recognition. A silent evening boat ride will allow you to get a closer look at some of the wildlife inhabiting the biologically most diverse mangrove forest in the world.
All meals and overnight stay on board.
Day 15 - Living with Tides and Tigers – People of the Sundarbans Forest
After the early morning exploratory boat trip, the ship will start cruising north through the mangrove forest. You will have the opportunity to observe fisherfolk at work in the channels, using various fish, crab and shrimp catching gear. If you are interested, we may grave an opportunity to visit one of the communities along the forest fringes highly dependent on the Sundarbans resources. Having an early lunch on board disembark in Mongla, avail the awaiting transport to Khulna (1hour drive) bus/train station or to Jessore (4 hours' drive) to avail flight to Dhaka. Upon arrival at Dhaka airport, you will be received and transferred to your hotel by a reserved vehicle.
[If your flight is in this evening, we will make our whole day plan accordingly]
Day 16: Leaving Bangladesh for coming back
You will be transferred to the Dhaka international airport, according to your flight time.
At this point, we will say goodbye to each other to meet again.