On arrival at Dhaka Zia International Airport you will be met by your zoologist escort and our local guide/driver. From the airport we will be transferred in our private air conditioned vehicle to old Dhaka (30-40 mins). Once in old Dhaka we will check into our accommodation, level – (Bangladeshi) 5* / guest house – (Dhaka Regency Hotel / Far Pavilion ltd). Depending on the time we have arrived in Bangladesh we will either have our evening meal here and relax ready for tomorrow or if we have time we will have lunch at the accommodation and have a tour of the cities sites such as Ahsan Manjil, Lalbag Fort, Dhakeshweri Mandir, Curzon Hall and many more sites; before having our evening meal back at our accommodation.
After our breakfast at our accommodation we will drive to Srimangal in our private vehicle (4 hours). We will then check into our accommodation, level – tea lodge / guest house (Tea Garden Resort / guest houses). Lunch will be served at the accommodation followed by a trip to Khasiapunji and local tribal villages. Dinner will be back at our accommodation.
The next three days will be spent in the heart of rural and wild Bangladesh. We are in the east of the country and close to the border with the Indian state of Tripura. This region is full of wildlife hidden in its deep rainforests; however due to deforestation, poaching and a growing human population most if not all of these animals are in serious danger. We will aim to find some of the most impressive and rarest over the next three days and try to highlight their plight. Depending on the local conditions the order we visit the different parks here is changeable; but we will aim to visit Lowacherra National Park today. To get here we will use local vehicles as the road conditions are not very good and there is a chance they will not be air conditioned. Once in the park we will have guided walks into the forest to try and find the very rare western hoolock gibbon which are more regularly seen here than anywhere else (an estimate of 49 individuals living in the park was made in 2006). As well as the gibbons, orange-bellied Himalayan squirrels, Indian muntjac, pig-tailed macaques and rhesus macaques are commonly seen. If the local authorities permit us we will come back after dark for a short spotlighting walk to see if there are any fishing cats, slow loris, masked civets or other nocturnal animals around. We will have lunch at a local restaurant or back at our accommodation. Our evening meal will be back at the accommodation, level – tea lodge / guest house (Tea Garden Resort / guest houses).
After breakfast we will again use local transport to visit Satchari National Park, the format of the visit is similar to Lowacherra National Park but we will focus on finding Phayres leaf monkeys and capped langurs here. The capped langur is a beautiful golden monkey and are a treat to find whilst Phayres leaf monkeys are incredibly rare and difficult to find. There are also pig-tailed macaques, rhesus macaques, Indian muntjacs, wild boar, fishing cats and many more species of birds (pygmy woodpeckers, red-headed tragoons, red jungle fowl, puff-throated babblers and oriental pied hornbills), reptiles and amphibians. We will have lunch at a local restaurant or back at our accommodation, level – tea lodge / guest house (Tea Garden Resort / guest houses). On return to our accommodation we will have our evening meal.
This morning after breakfast we will drive to Rema Kalenga Wildlife Sanctuary and once again have guided walks around to find the rare and endangered primates in the park such as Phayres leaf monkey, capped langur, rhesus macaques, western hoolock gibbons and slow loris as well as fishing cats, wild boar, Indian muntjac and crab-eating mongooses. Here there is also an impressive 167 species of birds which we will have a go at finding as well. Lunch will most probably be at a local restaurant and our evening meal will be back at our accommodation, level – tea lodge / guest house (Tea Garden Resort / guest houses).
After breakfast we will use our private air conditioned vehicle to travel back to Dhaka (4 hours). We will pick up some lunch from a wayside restaurant and once we arrive in Dhaka, level – (Bangladeshi) 5* / guest house – (Dhaka Regency Hotel / Far Pavilion ltd), we will have the rest of the afternoon and evening at your leisure. The evening meal will be at the our accommodation.
Sunderbans National Park
Today we embark on our adventure into the heart of the largest mangrove forest in the world and a national park home to the largest population of wild tigers left in the world! Over 200-450 have been estimated to live in the park and we will try and track one down…on foot! But first we have to get there and this means a transfer in our vehicle from Dhaka to Mongla or Khulna (depending on where our boat is moored) (6-7 hours). If our boat is moored at Khulna we will have the added experience of crossing the Padma River (the life blood of this burgeoning country) at one of its busiest points. Once we are on our boat (M.L. Bonbibi / New Tourist Boat) we will unpack and start our journey towards the Bay of Bengal. Along the way we will see the hustle and bustle of Bangladesh begin to fade away as the towns turn to villages which in turn become shacks and then nothing but trees as far as the eye can see. There is a wealth of people who use the water ways here and its brilliant to see the local people using fishing and harvesting techniques many hundreds of years old. As well as the people and boats we will keep an eye out for brahminy kites and grey-headed fish eagles soaring above and best of all the highly endangered Gangetic river dolphins which briefly break the surface to blow. We will stop at the Dhangmari forest office to gain permission to enter and meet our armed escorts (which are mandatory for visiting the park). Our evening meal will be onboard and we will spend the night onboard as well.
Sunderbans National Park
Today we will continue our journey from Dhangmari to Kachikhali forest station (7-8 hours cruising). Here we will spend the night surrounded by mangrove forests, virgin sea beaches and a view out into the Bay of Bengal. Tigers are regularly spotted here and its not uncommon to see them prowling the beach at night or early morning as well as herds of spotted deer and family groups of wild boar. We will spend an hour to two in the evening with a spotlight to try and find some tigers.
Sunderbans National Park
Early morning before sunrise there will be the option to have an hour or so spotlighting to see if there is a tiger having a drink at the rivers edge or even swimming across the river; after this we will use small country boats to travel into the smaller creeks and streams of the mangrove forest and look for drinking animals like chital, tigers, wild boar, rhesus macaques as well as the local bird life such as white-throated kingfishers, black-capped kingfishers, green bee-eaters, little herons and the very rare masked fin-foot. This trip will last an hour or two and after we will have breakfast back on the boat. We then set off to Katka Game Sanctuary (1-2 hours) and on arrival will leave the boat and have a hike through the jungle where we usually find fresh tiger prints and hope to see on walking through the dense vegetation. We will spend some time on the beach here and relax in one of the most wild and remote areas in the world. Lunch will be served on the boat and in the afternoon we will explore some of the area around the local forest station and see if we can find more evidence of tigers here. We usually have a BBQ tonight for our evening meal with locally caught fish the main treat. As yesterday there will be spotlighting after dark. We will once again spend the night on the boat.
Early in the morning there will be spotlighting offered to look to tigers before dawn. Then after breakfast we will begin our cruise back to Mongla / Khulna (7-8 hours) where we have a good chance of spotting large estuarine crocodiles basking if the sun is out. Along with the crocs we will look for dolphins, monkeys, birds and monitor lizards all the way back to civilisation. Our lunch will be served onboard before we disembark and head back to Dhaka for our last night in Bangladesh. Accommodation, level – (Bangladeshi) 5* / guest house – (Dhaka Regency Hotel / Far Pavilion ltd). Our evening meal will be at the accommodation.
This is our final day in Bangladesh and will be have breakfast in the accommodation before the option for a shopping tour of a handicraft market which is ideal for souvenirs and sight seeing. After some shopping we will transfer you back to Zia International Airport for your return flight home.
Please note that the itinerary stated above is correct as our planned intentions for the tour. However adverse weather conditions and other local considerations can necessitate some modifications of the itinerary during the course of the tour; any changes will be made to make the best of the time and weather conditions available to us.
This tour is available on different date (subject to availability) please contact us for more details about running this tour on a date which suits you more.