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At a glance
Journey through Sundarbans National Park in Bangladesh
Trip Highlights
Start Destination
End Destination
What's included
  • All breakfasts
  • 3 lunches and 2 dinners
  • All accommodation (see below)
  • All transport and listed activities
  • Tour leader throughout
  • Flights from London (if booking incl. flights)

Breakfast, 3 lunches and 2 dinners are included throughout the trip. You should allow £14-16 (approx. US$22-25) per day for lunch and dinner in Dhaka and around £7-10 (approx. US$10-15) per day for lunch and dinner in other towns and cities (when these are not included). Tea and soft drinks are very cheap. Mineral water is widely available. Please note that service in restaurants can be quite slow.

Day 1
Depart London
The overnight group flights to Dhaka leave London today.
Day 2
Arrive Dhaka
The trip starts in Dhaka today. Those on the group flights from London will be met at the airport and transferred to the hotel.
Day 3
Drive to Srimongal; visit Manipuri Para and a tea cabin for some 7 layer tea.
We leave Dhaka after breakfast and drive to Srimongal, the centre of Bangaldesh's thriving tea industry. The drive is fairly long (approx. 4.5 hours) but the lively towns we pass through as we make our way from Dhaka's lowland plains to the rolling forested hills of Srimongal provide plenty of interest. In the afternoon we visit the tribal village of Manipuri Para, home to a community of ethnic Meitei from northeast India. We also stop at a local tea cabin to try some unique 'seven layer tea', which blends seven different kinds of tea in one cup.
Day 4
Walk in Lawachhara rainforest and visit Khashia village; afternoon visit Madhabpur Lake.
Although the area around Srimongal has lots of tea and rubber plantations, it also features large tracts of rainforest, and this morning we head to Lawachhara National Park for a three hour forest walk. There are plenty of birds in the forest, as well as macaques, deer and giant squirrels, and if we're lucky we may come across a family of endangered Hoolock gibbons. After the walk, we visit a small village inhabited by another Indian indigenous group, the Khasi, who produce crops including oranges and betel nut. This afternoon, we stop at the wonderfully clear Madhabpur Lake, located within a large tea estate. The lake attracts large numbers of migratory birds during the winter months, and at any time of year it is a pleasant place to relax and take in the views.
Day 5
Transfer to Mymensingh.
This morning we have a long drive (approx. 6-7 hours) to the friendly town of Mymensingh, set on the banks of the Brahmaputra. In the late afternoon there is an optional walk through the lively local markets to the river bank.
Day 6
Drive to Bogra via the historical Zamindar palace complex and Madhubpur Forest N.P.
Historically, much of Bangladesh was controlled by local aristocrats known as Zamindars, and this morning we visit a large palace complex just outside the city which was home to a Zamindar family. The palace, now abandoned, features buildings dating back as far as the 16th century, and its architecture displays clear influences of the Mughal style of Rajasthan. Further out of town, close to the main highway, is Madhubpur National Park, a large forest reserve known for its proliferation of sal trees, a sacred plant in Hindu mythology. After a walk through the forest we visit a village which is home to the ethnic Garo people, one of the world's only matrilineal societies, to learn more about their simple way of life and their traditional customs which mix Christianity with older animistic religions. Our journey continues to the town of Bogra, and we cross the mighty Jamuna River on the way.
Day 7
Visit Paharpur, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and Mahasthangarh, a citadel city from 4th century BC.
We spend a full day exploring two of the most important historic sites in Bangladesh - the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Paharpur and the citadel of Mahasthangarh. Paharpur is one of the best known and best preserved Buddhist monasteries in southern Asia, and we spend time exploring the many monastic cells and shrines as well as the imposing central stupa. The carvings and layout of the site bear remarkable similarities to the later temples of Angkor in Cambodia and Prambanam on Java. The vast citadel of Mahasthangarh is the oldest archaeological site in the country, dating back to the 4th century BCE. It was in constant use until the 18th century, and it features huge earth-covered fortifications as well as evidence of occupation by both Hindus and Muslims.
Day 8
To Kushtia via the palaces and temples of Puthia.
Today we leave Bogra and head to Puthia, home to a collection of Hindu temples and palaces built by the Zamindars of nearby Rajashahi in the 19th century. Particularly notable are the grand Govinda temple, with its graceful terracotta ornamentation, and the large five-spired Bubaneshwar Shiva temple, which overlooks a tranquil lake and is reminiscent of the temples of northern India. The large palace of the Zamindars is also impressive, featuring a blend of traditional and classical European architecture. From Puthia, we continue to Kushtia, the cultural heart of Bangladesh, where, time permitting, we visit the beautiful Kuthibari Mansion, where Nobel Prize winning poet Rabindranath Tagore produced most of his famous work.
Day 9
Sightseeing around Kushtia; transfer to Khulna.
We spend the morning exploring Kushtia and its surroundings, including visits to the beautiful Kuthibari mansion, where Nobel Prize winning poet Rabindranath Tagore produced most of his famous work, and the mausoleum of Lalon Fakir, a renowned saint, mystic and songwriter who influenced many local and international poets, including Beat poet Allen Ginsberg. In the afternoon we drive for approximately 5.5 hours to the city of Khulna, gateway to the Sundarbans.
Day 10
Cruise into Sundarbans N.P.; explore by small country boat and on foot.
We board our vessel at either Khulna or Mongla, and spend the next two days exploring the Sundarbans National Park by specially built cruise boat and smaller country boats. A UNESCO World Heritage Site, the park encompasses the largest block of coastal mangroves on the planet, and the forests are home to a huge range of fauna. As we sail through the waterways passing mudflats and small islands, we search for crocodiles, deer and dolphins as well as watching the many birds who call the mangroves home. We stop on several of the islands to explore the beaches and forests on foot, and if we are extremely lucky we may catch sight of a tiger or at least spot some fresh paw prints in the soft earth. The boat will anchor each evening, and we spend the night on board in twin- or multi-share cabins with shared facilities.
Day 11
Continue discovering the Sundarbans.
Continue discovering the Sundarbans.
Day 12
Admire the wildlife on the banks of the river whilst cruising back to Khulna; visit Sixty Domed Mosque.
We continue our journey through the Sundarbans today, with a half-day of cruising the backwaters and creeks as we make our way slowly back to Mongla. From here we drive back to Khulna, where we arrive in the late afternoon. If there is time in the afternoon, we may visit the Sixty Domed Mosque in Bagerhat, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. One of the most impressive mosques in southern Asia and the largest brick mosque in Bangladesh, it dates back to the 15th century and despite its name, actually has 77 domes supported by 60 elegant pillars. If time is tight, we will visit the mosque tomorrow morning before we travel to Dhaka.
Day 13
Drive to Dhaka.
This morning we set off on a long journey (approx. 8 hours) to Dhaka - the drive includes a ferry crossing of the Padma River as we near the capital.
Day 14
Dhaka sightseeing including the Liberation War Museum and the Shaheed Minar, a memorial to commemorate the Bengali Language Movement of 1952.
Today we have a full day tour of Dhaka. The mix of cultures in Bangladesh is evident as we visit the 11th century Dakeshwari Hindu temple and the 17th century Lalbagh Fort, an unfinished yet still imposing Mughal fort complex. We also learn about the country's more recent history at the Liberation War Museum and the Shaheed Minar, a monument to those killed during the Bengali Language Movement of 1952.
Day 15
Fly to London
Those on the flight inclusive package will depart for the airport this morning for the daytime flight back to London; Land Only arrangements will finish after check-out from the hotel.
Prices & Availability
Great Experience 4/5

What was the most inspirational moment of your trip? Overall friendliness and good atmosphere between tourists and locals, Good example would be photo call on the river beach at Mymensingh with local children and the local constabulary. …

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