Tourist spots in the country’s southern districts, including the Sundarbans and the historic Shat Gombuj Mosque, are seeing sizeable flow of tourists as travelling has become easy after Padma Bridge opened.

The Forest Department is going to open four more eco-tourism centres in the Sundarbans to manage the growing number of tourists.

Muhammad Belayet Hossain, divisional forest officer of Sundarbans East Zone, said the mangrove forest is seeing a sharp rise in the number of tourists after the inauguration of Padma Bridge.

Read: Sundarbans reopens to tourists, fishermen after 3 months

Four new eco-tourism centres are being set up in Alibanda, Andharmanik, Shekhertek and Kalabagi to handle the growing tourist flow.

There are already seven eco-tourism centres at Karamjal, Herbaria, Kalagachia, Katka, Kochikhali, Dubla and Heron Point for tourists visiting the Sundarbans.

Tourists can visit the three centres in Karamjal, Herbaria and Kalagachia with a fixed entry fee and they have to return within the day.

Read “RAB freed Sundarbans from robbers and inspired a quality film”

Tourists have to take permission from the Forest Department earlier to travel to the other places.

On an average, more than one lakh local and foreign tourists visit the Sundarbans every year where Sundarbans division receives more than Tk one crore as revenue, said DFO Belayet.

Sundarbans directly and indirectly supports the livelihood of more than 10 lakh people. This mangrove forest has been protecting the people of the southwestern region from cyclones and floods.

Read: Expectations abound as tourists set to return to Sundarbans from Sept 1

Shat Gombuj Mosque, declared as a world heritage site by Unesco, is believed to have been built more than 600 years ago by Khan Jahan Ali in Sundarghona village.

On average, 1,000 tourists visit this historic site daily, said Md Jayed, custodian of Shat Gombuj Mosque.

Around five lakh tourists visited the historic mosque last year from where the mosque received Tk 57 lakh as revenue.

The number of tourists and earnings have increased due to Padma Bridge, he added.

Read Top 10 Historical Mosques in Bangladesh

Bagerhat Tourist Police Inspector Mosharf Hossain said Tourist Police are working to provide round-the-clock security to tourists here.

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