Why not Dhaka?


Looking for a new challenge? Does an overseas role appeal to you?

I often speak to candidates who have desires to try something new and experience working abroad, but also has hesitations (naturally!) as often our only exposure to foreign lands comes from our holidays. So often we can say, “Oh! I would move to Spain or Italy as I’ve been there on holiday, but I wouldn’t consider Holland or Germany.” I was guilty of exactly this myself; Australia was the ideal, I would have settled for New Zealand, or even the Far East, but where did I end up? ….Belgium!

It’s easy to pass up the opportunity of a lifetime if you don’t have direct experience of the location, but in reality, your holiday and/or work trips, are not a great comparison to living and working in that country.

Be Open Minded!

These assignments may not be lifelong (or even career-long) secondments, but they are an opportunity to spend a couple of years, living life, seeing the world, experiencing other cultures and moving your career forward a level.

So why not Bangladesh..? It’s a country rapidly developing thanks to the investments of the Fashion Industry and it has come on leaps and bounds in the last 10 years. Yes, there have been some tragic and unnecessary events in recent years, though this has however has aided the development and investment in the countries growth.

Here are a few things you may not know about Bangladesh, with a footnote from me just saying, keep an open mind…

One hour flight from Dhaka in the Chittagong Area is the Beautiful – Cox’s Bazar. This is one of the world’s longest unbroken beaches with 125km of stunning sandy beach.

The Bangladeshi’s are some of the nicest most welcoming people I have ever met. They will take you under their wing and you will become part of the family; they will openly welcome you into their culture and if you get an opportunity to experience family parties/wedding they are a real experience.

Festivals and Celebrations are a great experience, you can get involved, dress in a sari, get some henna, add a bindi… and off you go to the ghats (piers) where you can watch the effigies of Durga being launched on their way along the Ganges.

Transport, yes, this can be a challenge… but you will adapt and learn the routes and times that work for you, again, be open to modes of transport. Rickshaw’s, Cycle Carts and Cow Carts, are the most fun and if they can’t miss all of the traffic, they can certainly make it more enjoyable.

Dhaka has a number of very good restaurants, mainly in the Gulshan District, one of my favourites being The Castle (above). This is some of the best food in town, 1-6k Taka; it’s not cheap but worth every Taka! In Gulshan you can eat Korean, Chinese, Turkish and Italian (another favourite of mine is Spaghetti Jazz), get great coffee and cinnamon buns, as well as Movenpick Ice Cream and Pecan Waffles… Mmmm!

As an Ex-Pat in Dhaka, you will no doubt visit and get involved with some of the City’s clubs and societies. You can play squash at the Gulshan Club; get your Martini at the American Club, and play a spot of Tennis at the International recreation Club. You will find a wide mix of nationalities at these clubs and they are great relaxing hang outs, away from the hustle and bustle of the city.

Art is thriving in Bangladesh at the moment and is developing along with the country, you may visit the Bengal Art Lounge in the Gulshan, which is an amazing gallery, offering your art fix and regular events, exhibitions and installations; it is really well run and offers a great website so you can keep up to date.

Work with the season and eat the tastiest fruit and veg! Eat seasonal fruit and veg (not the imported and treated delights) early in the year you will get tasty local Tomatoes, Spinach, Sweet Peas and Runner Beans, from April you will be able to lay your hands on super tasty Mango and Guava, and for a short period, local lychees!

Dhaka has some pretty amazing parks, Ramna Park perhaps being one of the best, left to the city in the 17th Century, having had a questionable past, the park now consists of around 70 acres of parkland with a lake and stunning flora & fauna.

Other things to keep a look out for:

Curzon Hall – University of Dhaka, started in 1904 as a town hall building but became a university campus on opening in 1911.

Parliament House – One of the largest legislative complexes in the world at 215 acres.

Lalbagh Fort – 17th century fort, standing at the Buriganga River, SW of the city.

Baldha Botanical Gardens – Spanning three acres with a collection of over 700 plants.

Tempted now…? Drop us a line to sales@peoplemarketing.co.uk and one of our team will be more than happy to help and advice any way we can.

Be. Open. Minded!