Cox’s Bazar is the most popular tourist destination of Bangladesh. It became a district in the Chittagong Division in the year 1984. The Cox’s Bazar town serves as the district headquarters. The cross-section of people comprises of this place. This town is 150 kms south east of Chittagong and is about 400 kms from the capital Dhaka. Cox’s Bazar is famed as the longest undivided beach in the world, about 120 kms in length, the mud flats included. Cox’s Bazar also serves as a fishing port.
Earlier Cox’s Bazar was known as Panowa, which means a yellow flower. It was also known as Palongkee. It derives its present name from Lieutenant Cox, who served in the British Army and died in 1798, and who provided shelter to maghs, who were running away from the army of Burma in the 18th century
The Mughals occupied Cox’s Bazar for a considerable length of time and it came under the control of Tipras and Arakanese after the Mughals. Thereafter the Portuguese took control of this area and then the British retained it till the independence of India in 1947. After 1947, and the partition of India, Cox’s Bazar became a part of East Pakistan. When East Pakistan fought against the government of West Pakistan, the wharf at Cox’s Bazar was used as a port by the Pakistan Army and that, along with the air-strip nearby was repeated shelled by the Indian Air Force. Thus now, it is a part of the Republic of Bangladesh.
Though the main attraction of Cox’s Bazar is the sea and the beach, however there are many quaint and interesting places to visit in and around Cox’s Bazar.
Himchari is about 18 kms south of Cox’s Bazar and has beautiful waterfalls. The road leading to Himchari is very picturesque with the hills on one side of the road and the sea on the other. A beautiful beach surrounded by coconut trees is the Inani Beach, in the Ukhia Thana, which, is 32 kms south of Cox’s Bazar. It has coral borders.
Aggmeda Khyang is a very important Buddhist Monastery. Laboni beach is the main beach of Cox’s Bazar as it is nearest to the town. There is a small island called Maheshkhali, near the coastline. It is very picturesque with small hills and mangrove forests. There is also a temple of Adinath or Lord Shiva here as well as a Buddhist Pagoda. Incidentally, Buddhism has a very strong influence here in this region that is Chittagong, Chittagong Hill Tracts and adjoining areas.
Teknaf is a small hamlet situated near the Naaf River. The other side of the river is Myanmar. This is the southernmost part of Bangladesh and home to a variety of fauna. Ramu is also a small hamlet, about 16 kilometers from Cox’s Bazar. It is known for its handicrafts and hand made cigars of the tribal Rakhyne community
Places to stay in Cox’s Bazar are hotels like Seagull, Hotel Sea Place etc. Bangladesh Tourism has also put up Parjatan Motels here.
Two to three flights Biman, Bangladesh Airlines operate from Dhaka and Chittagong to Cox’s Bazar. Regular Coach Service from Chittagong, however is a better alternative.
Cox’s Bazar again came to the lime light by competing as a natural wonders of the world. 121 KM lengthy this sandy sea beach is the longest and least-crowded beaches of the world. Still now most part of this beach is virgin, did not captured totally by commercialization. However the Cox’s Bazar is most desired tourist spot for all Bangladeshi. Nowadays based beach the urbanization is increasing. World class exotic hotels, motels and resorts have been established. But the local people still now poor living by finishing, agriculture and tourism based small entrepreneurship. The hotel investment mostly comes from outside of the district, majority owners are from Dhaka and Chittagong as complete business men.
Because of tourism here the market price here high compare to other places of Bangladesh. The communication from Dhaka and Chittagong here good. There luxurious bus and local airline services. “Saudia Aslam’ is the latest addition of ‘Marcity Benz’ bus server. But the global standard beach cultural practices and living environment have not yet been well accepted by the local people because of illiteracy and conservative practices. With the governmental patronization the Cox’s Bazar can be more attractive tourist spot. The months of September and October are best seasons to enjoy the sunset.
Note: Cox’s Bazar is located 150 km south of Chittagong, is also known by the name “Panowa“, the literal translation of which means “yellow flower“. Its other old name was “Palongkee“. The modern Cox’s Bazar derives its name from Captain Cox (died 1798), an army officer serving in British India. Because of climate change, sea level rising and salinity increasing, the city and beach now environmentally under threat.