Wild Beauty of BANDARBAN

Shafi Newaz
Photo: Shoeb Faruque, Ariful Islam Suhas, Etha Chakma, Jun

 

Bandarban is an immensely adorned South-Eastern district of Bangladesh with an area of  4,479 km². Bandarban is unanimously regarded as the most remote region yet the most exotic travel destination in Bangladesh. It also is the administrative headquarters of Bandarban district.

Be it the range of lush green hills with tiny little organized villages on them, the mighty mountains covered in cotton like clouds or the furious fountains and soothing streams of crystal-clear water that comes out of them, Bandarban has it all. All the highest peaks of Bangladesh – Saka Haphong, Tazing Dong, Zow Tlang, Dumlong, Jogi Haphong, Keokradong are located in Bandarban district. The hills and mountain are full of beauty and wonder. One can trek along through the misty clouds and breathe air so fresh that it feels like a healing element traveling down the spine, filling the chest chambers with tranquility and stressing the eyelids to shutdown into a soulful experience. The landscape seems like a painting made by a mighty artist. The surface of the hills are covered with jum fields, fruits and vegetable gardens, tiny little community villages full of life, roadways embracing the hills like serpants etc. Raikhiang Lake, the highest lake in Bangladesh, Chimbuk peak and Boga Lake are notable features of the district. The Sangu River, being the only river born inside Bangladeshi territory, runs through Bandarban. The most amazing boat ride can only be experienced in Sangu as both sides of the river including the river itself are insanely beautiful. The zigzag course of the river with strong current colliding into the rocky adornments are breathtaking. The landscapes and lifestyles of the people of the valleys will seize you in magic spell. The other rivers in the district  Matamuhuri and Bakkhali are no less beautiful. They have their own definition of beauty. Parts of Kaptai Lake, the biggest lake in Bangladesh fall under the district. Bandarban district consists of Bandarban Sadar, Thanchi, Lama, Naikhongchhari, Ali kadam, Rowangchhari, and Ruma. 

Thanchi-Alikadam Road via Dim pahar (33 km) is the highest motorable road in Bangladesh which is 2,500 feet above sea level.

 

Boga Lake

Locally known as Bagakain Lake, Boga Lake is the highest naturally formed lake in Bangladesh. Being situated at about 3000 feet above the sea level the lake area spreads out within 15 acres of land. Boga lake is 18 kilometers away from Ruma Sadar Upozilla. The surrounding of the lake is wide open with a 360-degree view of open sky with clouds here and there. The color of water is blue and its quite clear. There are many myths prevalent regarding the creation of this vast lake.

Buddha Dhatu Jadi

The Buddha Dhatu Jadi is a Theravada Buddhist temple also known as the Bandarban Golden Temple. The Buddha Dhatu Jadi is located at Pulpara, 4 kilometer from Balaghata town and 10 kilometer from in the remote Bandarban hill district, in Bangladesh. The Bandarban Golden Temple is the largest Theravada Buddhist Temple with the second largest Buddha statue in Bangladesh.

Chimbuk Hill

Chimbuk hill is one of highest hills of the Chimbuk range. It is just 26 kilometer away from Bandarban sadar. Chimbuk hill is about 2500 feet high above sea level. The road to Chimbuk is fun to ride as it is zigzag. While your jeep moves through the zigzag road, you'll explore beautifully organized villages, their simplicity in human gestures will touch your heart for sure. The hilltop creates a heavenly atmosphere where you'll feel like floating over the range of moving clouds whileen looking down. The huge horizon of zigzag hills seems like a lush green ocean full of gigantic waves.

 

Tajingdong

Tajingdong also known as “Bijoy” is about 4300 ft (1310 meters) high from the sea level. It is situated in Remakri’s pangsha union in Ruma upazilla of Bandarban. According to local tribal language “Tajing” means “Great” & “Dong” means “Hill” compiling the name as to be “Great hill".

There are various tribal communities living around the bottom of the mountain. Their way of living is primitive and natural. This remote area is full of breathtaking beauty. Here you can see many small and big mountains and hills. This area is covered with dense forests, birds and animals.

 

Keokradong

Keokradong is the one of the highest mountains of Bangladesh. Keokradong is about 1,230 meters high from the sea level. It is situated in 30km away from the Ruma sadar upazilla of Bandarban. The surrounding area has a number of smaller hills. This area is covered with dense forests providing habitat for different species of birds and animals.

It is the place where the surprising beauty is unfailing to captivate the eyes of adventurous lovers. 

Prantik Lake

Prantik Lake is really beautiful tourist spot in Bandarban district of Bangladesh. This lake is surrounded by many kind of plants and trees. This amazing place is a soothing escape for tourist.

The Lake located in a village named “Holudia” near the Keranihat Bandarban Road. It is 14km away from Bandarban town. Volume of this area is 29 acres.

Shoilo Propat

Shoilo Propat or Shoylo Propat is at Milanchari and 4km from the town on the road to Thanchi. This waterfall is a tourist site maintained by Bangladesh Parjatan Corporation. During the rainy season, as the water flow becomes furious, the falls regains its revived beauty. While visiting this waterfall you may want to roam around the small market nearby for handicrafts, handloom products and exotic foods sold by the tribal people.

Meghla

Meghla Parjatan Complex is a tourist spot located in the contiguous area of the Bandarban hill district council on the gateway of Bandarban maintained by district administration. It is around 4 km away from the town on the road to Keranihat, which features a mini safari park, a zoo, boating facilities, a hanging bridge and at the bottom of the hills an artificial lake made exclusively for the tourists. It is a popular place for picnic party.

Nilachal

Nilachal is also a tourist attraction similar to Meghla, maintained by district administration. It is known as Tiger hill. The view of horizon from Nilachal is spectacular. Nilachal is the nearest tourist spot from Bandarban. It is situated at Tigerpara. It is near about 2000 feet above of sea level and 5 kilometer away from the Bandarban town. From here tourist can have a good look at the entire Bandarban town and a vast landscape surrounding the town. 

Mirinja Parjatan

Mirinja tourist spot (Parjatan complex) is situated at Lama upazilla of Bandarban district in Bangladesh. It is about 1500 feet high from sea level. Maheskhali Island, Bay of Bengal, Matamuhuri River and Lama upazilla can be seen from here. Parjatan Corporation developed attractive facilitie in this area. There is a watch tower here.

Mirinja is situated at the 16 kilometer point of Fashiakhali – Lama – Ali Kadam road of Bandarban district in Bangladesh.

Khums and Remakri

Remakri has a number of khums. Khums means deep tunels in between hills or mountains. The notables of the khums are Nafakhum, Amiyakhum, Satbhaikhum, Devtakhum and Bhelakhum. Among them Nafakhum is, beyond argument, the most majestic waterfall in Bangladesh. The trails and route to Nafakhum is an excellent way to explore the bounty of nature. Every traveler should plan to visit this beautiful waterfall at least once. The scenic beauty and characteristics change frequently according to seasons and weather conditions. It becomes furious and enraged in the rainy season. 

Nafakhum is situated on the wild hilly Sangu River at a remote area called Remakri of Thanchi upazilla. Nafakhum is also known as Remakri waterfall. It is among the largest waterfalls in Bangladesh by volume of water fall.

Chingri Jhiri 

Chingri Jhiri waterfall is situated at Ruma upazilla and close to Boga lake. It takes mostly one-hour-walk from Boga lake through some big rock and pebble. You have to make a trip from Bandarban to Ruma by “Chander Gari” (public jeep) or a private vehicle. From Ruma you can hire public jeep upto Boga Lake. You can also walk to Boga Lake in winter season. It will require 6 hours to reach Boga Lake.

Zingsiam Saitar

Zingsiam Saitar is one of the wonderful waterfalls at Ruma upazilla in Bandarban. The unique feature of this waterfall the water fall is divided into three different sections. Altogether these three falls makes it really amazing to the eye. This waterfall is used by the Bawn community for their everyday needs.

Jadipai Waterfall 

Jadipai Waterfall or Jadipai Jhorna is one of the widest as well as wildest water falls in Bangladesh. Jadipai Waterfall is located at Ruma upazilla of Bandarban district in Bangladesh. It takes more than an hour to reach Jadipai from Keokradong.

One needs to reach Bandarban. From Bandarban you have to hire a jeep locally known as Chander Gari to reach Boga Lake via Ruma Bazar. At Boga lake one has to stay a night because reaching Boga Lake alone takes the entire day. There are many Tribal villages in the area near Boga lake. You can stay the night and take dinner from here and guide will help you to find a good place. You have to start journey to Keokradong as early in the morning as possible to cover Jadipai and come back.

 

Sangu River

Sangu River is the complete element of the natural beauty of Bandarban. It follows a northernly circuitous course in the hill tracts up to Bandarban. It enters the district from the east and flows west across the district and finally falls into the bay of Bengal at the end of a course of 270 km. This river is flowing through the hills thousands of years. It is an important route to communicate with Ruma and Thanci Upozilla. It has huge financial interests for the population of Bandarban. This river is widely used for transportation, agricultural and other necessary products for the people of remote community.

In the winter season the current of the river almost becomes stagnant but in the rainy season the current becomes aggressive. The valleys on the both side of the river is mesmerizing enough to get you spellbound. You can find here hills, forests, falls with a river together. All the way, you will be thrilled to ride the boat, see the boatman driving you through the rocky course skillfully.

Rijuk Waterfall

Located at Ruma upazilla, Rijuk Waterfall is about 300 feet high with continuous flow of water which falls into the river Sangu. This waterfall is surrounded by diverse natural resources. It is 66km southeast from Bandarban town. Rijuk waterfall is located at Ruma upazilla of Bandarban in Bangladesh. It is 66 kilometer southeast from Bandarban town. As there is no food and accommodation facility in Rijuk falls you have to carry your food and waters from Ruma Bazaar.