Bangladesh is a South Asian country marked by lush greenery and many waterways.
The official name of the country is the People’s Republic of Bangladesh.
Located at the apex of the Bay of Bengal, the country is bordered by India and Myanmar and is separated from Nepal and Bhutan by the narrow Siliguri Corridor.
The official language is Bengali.
As of 1 January 2016, the population of Bangladesh was estimated to be 161,957,017 people. It is the world’s eighth-most populous country and the fifth-most populous in Asia.
With more than 1,000 people per square kilometer (2,600 per square mile), the country is one of the most crowded on Earth.
Bangladesh is the 92nd largest country in the world by area with 147,610 square kilometers (56,990 square miles). The country extends 820 kilometers (510 miles) north to south and 600 kilometers (370 miles) east to west.
Dhaka is the capital and largest city of Bangladesh. The city is a microcosm of the entire country, with diverse religious and ethnic communities.
Bangladesh is a low-lying, riverine country with a largely marshy jungle and coastline of 580 kilometers (360 miles) on the northern littoral of the Bay of Bengal.
Cox’s Bazar Beach is an unbroken 120 kilometers (75 miles) sandy sea beach with a gentle slope, one of the world’s longest.
Saka Haphong is a peak in Bangladesh, often considered the highest point of the country, with an elevation of 1,052 meters (3,451 feet). Saka Haphong is not officially the highest peak of Bangladesh, but maps and other data indicate there are no higher peaks within the country.
About 700 rivers including tributaries flow through the country constituting a waterway of total length around 24,140 kilometers (15,000 miles). Most of the country’s land is formed through silt brought by the rivers.
Three of Asia’s largest rivers, the Ganges, the Brahmaputra and the Meghna, flow through Bangladesh and form the fertile Bengal delta — the largest delta in the world.
About 67% of Bangladesh’s nonurban land is arable.
The Sundarbans is a natural region comprising southern Bangladesh and a part in the Indian state of West Bengal. It is the largest single block of tidal halophytic mangrove forest in the world. It is also the largest reserves for the Bengal tiger. The Sundarbans is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Bangladesh has 3 UNESCO world heritage sites.
Somapura Mahavihara in Paharpur is among the best known Buddhist viharas in the Indian Subcontinent and is one of the most important archeological sites in the country. It was designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in the year of 1985.
The Mosque City of Bagerhat is a formerly lost city, located in the suburbs of Bagerhat city in Bagerhat District, in the Khulna Division of southwest of Bangladesh. The ancient city, formerly known as Khalifatabad flourished in the 15th century BC. The site has been recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1985.
Ahsan Manzil was the official residential palace and seat of the Dhaka Nawab Family. This magnificent building is situated at Kumartoli along the banks of the Buriganga River in Dhaka. The construction of this palace was started in 1859 and was completed in 1872. It has been designated as a national museum.
Lalbagh Fort is an incomplete 17th century Mughal fort complex that stands before the Buriganga River in the southwestern part of Dhaka. The construction was started in 1678 AD by Mughal Subahdar Muhammad Azam Shah who was son of Emperor Aurangzeb and later emperor himself. His successor, Shaista Khan, did not continue the work, though he stayed in Dhaka up to 1688.
The earliest reference to the region was to a kingdom called Vanga, or Banga (c. 1000 B.C. ). Buddhists ruled for centuries, but by the 10th century Bengal was primarily Hindu. In 1576, Bengal became part of the Mogul Empire, and the majority of East Bengalis converted to Islam. Bengal was ruled by British India from 1757 until Britain withdrew in 1947 and Pakistan was founded out of the two predominantly Muslim regions of the Indian subcontinent. East Pakistan rebelled with a Civil war in 1971, and gained independence from the West (Pakistan) to become the country of Bangladesh.
In Bangladeshi cuisine rice is the main staple food and is served with a wide range of curries. Sublime Bangladeshi dishes exhibit strong aromatic flavors; and often include eggs, potatoes, tomatoes and aubergines. A variety of spices and herbs, along with mustard oil and ghee, is used in Bangladeshi cooking. Fish is a staple in Bangladeshi cuisine, especially freshwater fish, which is a distinctive feature of the country’s gastronomy.
About half of Bangladesh’s population is composed of farmers.
Rich soils yield three rice harvests a year, but major cyclones cause storm surges that smash into the delta, sweeping people, livestock, and crops from the lowlands. In 1970 a cyclone killed more than 300,000 people along the coast, and in 2007 Cyclone Sidr caused thousands of deaths along with significant damage to the country’s infrastructure.
Bangladesh is an important tea producing country. Its tea industry dates back to British rule, when the East India Company initiated the tea trade in Chittagong in 1840. The industry accounts for 3% of global tea production, and employs more than 4 million people.
Over 30% of Bangladesh’s population live below the poverty line, however, the economy and standards of living have been improving over recent years.
The currency of Bangladesh is called the taka which means ‘currency‘ in Bengali.
The national animal of Bangladesh is the endangered Royal Bengal Tiger.
Cricket is the most popular sport in the country.