Bangladesh is South Asian country of lush greenery and many waterways. It is located on the east of India on the Bay of Bengal. Its Padma (Ganges), Meghna and Jamuna rivers create fertile alluvial plains, and travel by boat is common. On the southern coast, the Sundarbans, an enormous mangrove forest shared with India, are home to the Royal Bengal tiger.
Bangladesh is awash with rivers as more than 700 of them flow through this small country and the result is a deliciously lush landscape with more shades of green than you ever imagined. There are almost as many kilometers of rivers in Bangladesh as there are roads, and travelling by boat is a way of life here. Bangladeshis are famously friendly, and you are almost certain to receive a warm welcome everywhere you go.
Bangladesh is a melting pot of races. She, therefore, has a mixed culture. Her deep-rooted heritage is amply reflected in her architecture, literature, dance, drama, music and painting. Three great religions- Hinduism, Buddhism and Islam influence Bangladeshi culture in successive order, with Islam having the most pervading and lasting impact. Like a colorful montage, the cultural tradition of the country is a happy blending of many variants, unique in diversity but in essence greatly symmetrical.
A series of festivals varying from race to race are observed here. Some of the Muslim rites are Eid-e-Miladunnabi, Eid-ul-Fitr, Eid-ul-Azha, Muharram etc. Hindus observe Durga Puja, Saraswati Puja, Kali Puja and many other pujas. Christmas (popularly called Baradin in Bangla ) is observed by Christians. Also there are some common festivities, which are observed countrywide by people irrespective of races. PahelaBaishakh (the first day of Bangla year) is such a festival. National festivals are Independence Day (26th March), 21st February (the National Mourning Day and World Mother Language Day), The Victory Day (16th December), Rabindra& Nazrul Jayanti etc.
Modest dress up is culturally appropriate in Bangladesh. Visitors should maintain a conservative dress standard and avoid showing much skin beyond head, hands, and feet. Females are advised to carry a scarf. Light-woolen wear will be handy in winter.
Bangladesh has a tropical monsoon-type climate, with a hot and rainy summer and a pronounced dry season in the cooler months. Under the Köppen climate classification, Dhaka has a tropical wet and dry climate. The city has a distinct monsoonal season, with an annual average temperature of 25 °C (77 °F).
Main seasons: Winter (Nov – Feb), Summer (Mar – Jun), Monsoon (Jul – Oct). Temperature: Max 34 degree Celsius, Min 8 degree Celsius.
As of 2013, the population of Bangladesh was estimated to be 156.6 million. Dhaka is the capital of Bangladesh. The Dhaka Metropolitan Area is the 11th largest city in the world, with a population of 12 million people. The Greater Dhaka Area covers a population of 17 million people.
Bengali is the official language of Bangladesh. The vast majority of the people of Bangladesh speak Bangla (Bengali). Bangla is an Indo-Aryan language and evolved from Sanskrit.
English is also used as a second language among the middle and upper classes and is also widely used in higher education and the legal system. English is not widely spoken and understood by locals.
The standard time in Dhaka is GMT +6.
Banks are normally open Sunday to Thursday, from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm. Meanwhile, branches and currency exchange booths located inside shopping malls are open during weekend, and they operate longer hours.
The local currency is Bangladeshi Taka. Notes are in denominations of 1,2,5,10,20,50,100, 500 and 1000 Taka.
The current exchange rate is approximately BDT 77.3454 to USD1 (subject to change). Foreign currencies can be exchanged at banks, money exchange agencies available in hotels, airports and different corners of the city.
All major credit cards are accepted in most hotels, shops and restaurants. The most widely accepted credit cards are Visa and Master Card. Restaurants and shops generally display signs indicating which cards are accepted.
The standard voltage in Dhaka is 220 Volts A.C. Power outlets usually accommodate flat two pronged plugs, though some feature holes for round plug ends. Only few power outlets feature three holes (grounded outlets) so it is advised to carry a travel adapter with multiple options when going to Dhaka.
The country code +880 is used for calling Bangladesh from another country.
The phone system in the country is modern and widespread. Local SIM cards for mobile phone can be purchased at the airport, shopping malls and convenience stores. Moreover, mobile phones from overseas will work in Bangladesh, provided they are compatible with our networks. Calling friends and family while in Dhaka using your roaming number is possible, however, the charges can be quite expensive.
The land-line telephone system in Bangladesh is state owned and the Bangladesh Telecommunication Company Limited (BTCL) is the controlling authority. Mobile communication is more competitive and there are a number of competing services in Bangladesh.
Cell Phone Companies
There are 6 mobile phone operators in Bangladesh. These are:
Airtel Bangladesh Ltd. Branded as Airtel, formerly known as Warid Telecom
Grameenphone/Telenor Bangladesh Ltd.: Branded as Grameenphone
Orascom Telecom Ltd.: Branded as Banglalink
Pacific Bangladesh Telephone Ltd.: Branded as Citycell
Axiata Bangladesh Ltd: Branded as Robi
Teletalk Bangladesh Ltd.: Branded as Teletalk
Wifi connection is readily available in most hotels and guesthouses. Internet data packages can be bought from various cell phone companies. Bangladesh now has 3G Internet connectivity on cell phones.
Bangladesh by Air
There are 11 operational airports in Bangladesh. These are Dhaka, Barisal, Chittagong, Comilla, Cox’ s Bazar, Ishurdi, Jessore, Rajshahi, Syedpur, Sylhet and Thakurgaon. Of these, the airports at Dhaka, Chittagong and Sylhet serve international routes.
Biman, the national carrier, links all major towns with and cities with Dhaka. Some private airlines have also started operating between Dhaka and other cities.
Aarong is dedicated to bring about positive changes in the lives of disadvantaged artisans and underprivileged rural women.
Reaching out to weavers, potters, brass workers, jewelers, jute workers, basket weavers, wood carvers, leather workers and more, Aarong embraces and nurtures a diverse representation of 65,000 artisans, 85% of whom are women.
Aarong is the biggest name in quality Bengali clothing and handicrafts. It half a dozen branches, but the best two are these huge ones south of Gulshan and north of Dhanmondi. Both have a small cafe.
Finding innovative methods to reinvent traditional art forms is one of Jatra’s ways of synthesizing the past and the present. Using traditional Bangladeshi art forms on contemporary life style products keeps the magic of the past alive in the present. Since 2000, Jatra has been challenging paradigms. In a country of NGOs, Jatra has adopted a unique format- sustainable social business with local artisans that empower communities without dependence on foreign aid. Jatra has few outlets all over the city.
Bashundhara City is a 19 storey high building complex covering an area of 191200 sqft comprising an 8 storey podium containing retail spaces, mega stores, theme park, cinemas and food court and a 19 storey corporate office of bashundhara group over 2 storey health club and swimming pool. Bashundhara City Shopping Mall is the most prestigious and experienced commercial conglomerate in Bangladesh today.
Jamuna Future Park
Future Park is a fusion of international and local brands, traditional offerings, street fashion and hyper market brand- all under one roof. The mall is known as the platform for local and international retail brands in Dhaka city. It is a new prospective platform for the most renowned international retailers and brands in Bangladesh.
Discover Bangladesh Video