by Sagar Shahriar
Bangladesh, a land of breath taking greenery and ever beautiful rivers is a gift to its inhabitants. The land, the rivers, canals and, not the least, the sea beaches are always mesmerizing. Hundreds of thousands of people are drawn by these attractions every year and a plethora of tourists are seen all around Bangladesh especially in the peak seasons.
Among the many tourist destinations in Bangladesh, Cox’s Bazar is the most likely to score number one for its beautiful beach that is considered by many to be one of the longest unbroken stretches of sea beach in the world. The usual peak season for this area starts from early to mid-September and runs through to the end of March – that is the whole winter season of Bangladesh. Cox’s Bazar attracts tourists from home and abroad, and unsurprisingly it boosts some of the best hotel accommodations in Bangladesh. The food, rich culture of the long existing tribal groups and the magnificent Bay of Bengal truly make one’s stay here unforgettable.
We travelled to Cox’s Bazar last September and enjoyed staying in some of the best accommodations that this region has to offer. However, I must say that Mermaid Beach Resort was in a class by itself. Developed as an extension of Mermaid Eco Resort, Mermaid Beach resort has been located conveniently on the way to Teknaf from Cox’s Bazar in a place called Pechar Dwip. It is a short and pleasant journey by the coast which can be arranged personally or by the resort on request. A CNG or car drive would take about half an hour to reach the resort from Kolatoli roundabout, the main tourist road in Cox’s Bazar.
On the way to the resort, we passed by another tourist spot Himchori. Himchori is a small village town with a shopping area suitably located by the main street catering particularly for tourists. Sandals, bed covers, pullovers, ornamental bits and pieces (especially for the girls) are the most common items seen in the shops. There is also a natural waterfall behind the shopping area which can be accessed for a fee of TK 10 per person. Himchori lies near the middle of Cox’s Bazar and the Mermaid Beach resort location.
The actual resort is a beautiful place to stay and the rooms are very well decorated. Ecologically inspired bungalows with their private gardens in the front make the experience even more special. With the sea water rising and coming as near as 50 meters from the bungalows, it feels blissful just to sit in the garden with your loved ones and enjoy the natural surroundings.