I did a six-day Dhaka/Sundarbans tour in January (adding another two day tours at the front and back) and was blown away in a pleasant way just by the experience of visiting the world’s fifth-most populous country. I have traveled to about 150 countries in the past 25 years, and this was a recent highlight. Put away any preconceptions, be prepared for the unexpected (mostly good, some not so great) and feel really off the beaten path.
Highlights were the sheer fascinating crush of colorful humanity in the old town of Dhaka, the vista of river life from the bridge over the River, coming across a rural Bengali wedding at which we became honored visitors near Bagerhat, waking to misty riverbanks on the ferry south, the local cooking on the small cheery Sundarbans boat and the excellent guidance of Ali in the Sundarbans and Faisal throughout the trip.
An unexpected visit to a village wedding in Bangladesh. ©Photo Credit: Faisal Mahmud
The most difficult bit might be just navigating the bureaucracy on entering the country, although Nijhoom provides excellent instructions on how to get through this. Also, Dhaka traffic is some of the worst I have ever encountered, and the frequent strikes and protests might require some impromptu detours.
All in all a wonderful experience for anyone wanting to do something a bit different. Nijhoom provides excellent value for money and made the experience as smooth as could be expected in a country that sees little tourism.
Walking inside the Sundarbans Mangrove Forest in Bangladesh. ©Photo Credit: Faisal Mahmud