Chittagong is the main seaport and second largest city of Bangladesh. Located in southeastern Bangladesh, it straddles the hilly terrain at the mouth of the Karnaphuli River, and is bounded by the Bay of Bengal to its west. Its estimated population stands at over 5 million people, and it is the administrative capital of Chittagong Division.
An ancient and historic gateway to Bengal, Chittagong was a major port on the silk route. For centuries, the region was frequented by Arab, Persian, Burmese and Portuguese merchants and attracted numerous explorers such as Ibn Battuta and Admiral Zheng He. The area fell to the authority of the British East India Company during the conquest of Bengal in the 18th century. With the development of the Assam Bengal Railway and the growth of tea and jute exports, the modern city emerged in the early 20th century. It served as an important base for Allied Forces during the Burma Campaign of World War II. After the partition of British India, it became the chief port of East Pakistan and underwent rapid expansion. In 1971, as the Pakistan Army launched military operations against Bengali nationalists and civilians, the declaration of Bangladesh’s independence was announced in Chittagong.
A commercial and industrial hub, Chittagong is home to many of the largest and oldest corporations in Bangladesh, including those involved in textiles, shipping, petroleum, steel, tea, commodities, shipbuilding, automotive industry and logistics. The Port of Chittagong handles over eighty percent of the country’s international trade. It is one of the fastest growing cities in the world. And in recent years, neighboring countries, such as India and China, have looked to the port city as a future gateway to landlocked southern Asia, including northeast India, Bhutan, Nepal, southwest China and parts of Burma. Chittagong intends to emerge as a regional economic hub in South and East Asia, and is undertaking various megaprojects, including a deep sea port.
The city of Chittagong is a major tourist attraction in Bangladesh. Its green hills and forests, its broad sandy beaches and its fine cool climate always attract the holiday-markers. Described by the Chinese traveler poet, Huen Tsang (7th century AD) as “a sleeping beauty emerging from mists and water” and given the title of “Porto Grande” by the 16th century Portuguese seafarers. Chittagong is filled with dense green forests, endless rolling hills, a moderate climate and breathtaking beaches. Since the 7th century, Chittagong has been mentioned in many documents as a seaport of mystical beauty and magnificent charm. The bustling harbor stands in stark contrast to the tranquility and peaceful surroundings of the city.
The city has experienced many hotels and guesthouses coming in recent years. Many high end private hotels such as Hotel Agrabad, Hotel Well Park Residence, The Peninsula Chittagong, Hotel Harbour View, Hotel Meridian, Avenue Hotels and Suites etc. In the recent years more than 20 hotels have launched operation in the port city to meet standards of foreign businessman, clients, dealers and tourists. Most of these hotels are located in Agrabad Commercial Area, Nasirabad, CDA Avenue etc.
No international chain hotels operate here but Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group, which has a Raddison in Dhaka, plans to open another in the port city, and the tourist resort of Cox’s Bazar.
This beautiful lake surrounded with lovely hills is situated just east of the Pahartali Railway Station and West of the Khulshi residential area. This lake attracts thousands of visitors almost each day. There are small bushy hills around the green water of the lake. This beautiful artificial lake was created in 1942 by the Bengal Railways Engineer Mr. Foy for providing drinking water. So it was named after him. This lake is 8 km. away from the Zero point. There are some snack bar, restaurants in the lake area. One can enjoy beautiful sunset scene from the peak of the hills.
The war Cemetery is graveyards of the members of the Alied forces killed in the Indo-Burmese front during the World War II. In total, 755 soldiers from Australia, Britain, Canada, East and West Africa, India, New Zealand and other countries were buried in this cemetery.
It was built on the fi4rst half of the decade of 50s, located in hillside sloping place in the southwest corner of Chittagong Medical College Hospital. The total area of this cemetery is 8 acres, which is protected and supervised by the Common Wealth Graves Commission. There is an open field and beautiful garden just outside the cemetery. The whole scenery and environment of the area is eye-catching, solemn and tranquil at the same time.
its location is only only one km. away from the Zero point. As the official resident of the Deputy Commissioner (D.C) is situated on the peak of this hill, so it is called as D.C Hill. Various types of flowering and fruit-bearing trees are plan fully planted encircling the slopes of the whole hill. Day long colorful programs are held in the front side slope of the hill at the first day of Bangali New Year (Pahela Baishakh) and therefore the hill is considered as a place of cultural and historical importance.
The Batali Hill
The Batali Hill is the highest hill within the Chittagong Metropolitan area. It is situated in the Tiger Pass area of the city, only 1 km. from the Zero point. From the peak of the Batali Hill one can have a clear birds eye view of the city. a large number of people ascends at the top of the hill to fill their lungs with the fresh air, and to enjoy the breathtaking scenery of the sunset in the Bay of Bangal. The tourists too have a glance of the mouth of the Karnafuli, a comprehensive portion of the Bay of Bangal. the Jetties of the Chittagong Sea port and a large portion of the city Chittagong.
Chittagong Ethnological Museum
The Chittagong Ethnological Museum located in Agrabad, established in 1965, is the only ethnological museum in the country. It offers the visitors the chance to acquaint with the lifestyles and heritage of various ethnic groups of the country. The museum authority had collected rare elements used in everyday lives of different ethnic groups, of which some had already become extinct while some were on the verge of extinction. The museum contains four galleries and a small hall. Three galleries of the museum feature diverse elements of twenty nine ethnic groups in Bangladesh, while the rest of the gallery displays the lifestyles of some ethnic groups of India, Pakistan and Australia.The sculptures of the people of different ethnic communities and a piece of broken Berlin Wall attracts visitors, who can get impression of different festivals, livelihoods, and cultures of the communities from the murals set up at the hall room. These are reminiscent of the museum in the film Planet of the Apes. Around 200-300 people visit the museum everyday.
There is a heritage park called Shaheed Zia Memorial Complex and Mini Bangladesh at Chandgaon which reflects the most notable structures and instances of Bangladesh. This 71-metre tower in Mini Bangladesh in Chittagong has a restaurant on the top that rotates once every 90 minutes. The museum includes a revolving restaurant. One can perceive of the country’s architectural beauty, ethnic traditions and archaeological inheritance through having a glimpse of the heritage park. Replica of major structures of the country, includes Jatiya Sangsad Bhaban (parliament building), National Memorial of Savar, Ahsan Manzil, Curzon Hall of Dhaka University, Paharpur Monastery, Kantajew Temple of Dinajpur, Lalbagh Fort and Sona Masjid. The park also has different rides for children.
Chittagong Hill Tracts
The Chittagong Hill Tracts (CHT) comprising an area of 13,180 km2 in south-eastern Bangladesh, is the only hill intensive area of Bangladesh. CHT consisting Rangamati, Khagrachari and Bandarban districts is home to country’s largest concentration of at least 11 different ethnic groups and is a unique part of the country both in terms of landscape and its people. The ethnic groups are bound together by a shared history, years of peaceful cohabitation, and a common future. They differ from the majority Bengali population of Bangladesh in their physical features, culture and religion. However, nearly all the tribal peoples also include traditional tribal elements in their formal religious beliefs and practices.
Patenga Beach is one of the popular tourist spots for visitors in Chittagong. The beach lies approximately twenty-two kilometers away from the city of Chittagong, and is reachable by a straight, long road through a beautiful forest. It is located near fascinating landmarks which includes the Shah Amanat International Airport and the BNS Isha Khan Naval Base. Moreover, Patenga Beach is also located at the ‘Karnaphuli’ River mouth and stretches across the Bay of Bengal, which ensures a constant influx of travelers and visitors from home and abroad