Chittagong district’s Fotikchori has one wonderful tourism spot which is Hajarikhil wildlife sanctuary. From the main city around 45 kilometres north this natural sanctuary is located in Sitakunda and Ramgarh forest together with 3000 acress of land.
There are different species of plants and animals, that’s why in 2010’s 6th April this area was acknowledged as natural sanctuary of wildlife. There are 25 species of mammals along with 8 species of amphibian, 123 species of birds, 25 species of reptiles and 250 species of rare plants.
Some common animals can be seen are – Fishing cat, Monkeys, rare Wild goats, Maya Hareen (barking deer), Hudhud bird ( eurasian hoopoe), Hanuman (langur)
Birds- Kau Dhanesh, Begh bou, Neel kanta and Ababil birds, grey peacock and Mathura.
You would see different types and species of birds because this sanctuary is filled with almost rare plants and trees which is difficult to find anywhere else. With it’s own rare birds, migratory birds can be noticable here at winter. So, this is a kingdom of birds.
To have a tour, this place is not simply an option but must go. Very few people know about this, so yet it has not become a popular tourist place. You can assume that it’s a zoo type area but actually it is not the case and going to Hazarikhil wildlife sanctuary would be only way to see and experience it truly. You would experience three different things here at once. Three in one it is.
Entering Hazarikhil, tea gardens will invite you cordially and sitting at Chittagong you can taste the feel of tea garden, roads surrounded by tea trees will give you the feel of Sylhet. Hilly tea garden added the enchanting greenery to the place. In between tea garden you will see Chapalis, Chandul, Segun, Baikal, Koroi etc trees. Tripura community is the main workers of tea garden, you will see them too. Walking through the isle of garden you will notice at a point that there is no tea trees available, from there Jhiripath starts. This is known as -Hazarikhil trail. You need to walk 7-8 kilometres to finish the trail. At last point of the trail you will find Kalapani fountain. You won’t be able to imagine how beautiful it is if you don’t go there by yourself. You would fall in love with the nature walking through the trail. The forest will be deeper, when you go inside the trail. Walking on the pebbles you will feel cold water of fountain. Water level depends on the season. Sometimes at monsoon there will be waist deep level of water. And sometimes you need to swim to reach the end of the trail. In rainy season it’s a bit scary but will amaze you with it’s beauty. The more you walk through Jhiripath, the more it will attract you and you would explore more. Another attractive experience might be the tea adventure activity but you need to come back from Jhiripath before dusk because the activity is only available at day time. The tree activity is designed to cross levels on the big size trees in five different level. If someone wants they can give up and step down midway. So in one word – the trail, tree garden and the adventure, all together take the sanctuary to a whole different level.
How to go
At first you need to go Chittagong’s Oxygen Mor, from here there are buses to Fatikchari. Around 2.30-3 hours of ride will take you to the destination and in Fatikchari you will find many CNG standing for passengers. Take CNG and it will direct go to Hazarikhil Sanctuary’s gate or Fatikchari Bazar, from Bazar it will only take 10-15 minutes to reach there by walking. The same way is applicable to return.
Where to stay
The best enjoyable way is to do camping there. You don’t need to do anything for that, the caretakers of the sanctuary will arrange if you contact them earlier.
The most adventurous thing is you will hear the sound of animals and birds at night. And if you don’t want to do camping there are plenty of good hotels at Chittagong. Many are also budget friendly so you can choose one.
- Hotel Landmark, 3072 Sheikh Mujib road, Agrabad,Chittagong
- Hotel Naba Inn, road-5, plot-6 , O.R. Nizam road, Chittagong
Rent – 2500/3000 bdt.
- Hotel Paramount, Station road, Chittagong
You can have lunch at hotel “Vatghor” inside Hazarikhil, the hotel is located in-between trail and tea garden. At a hilly area, the hotel won’t be a bad choice for lunch. You can also find some good hotels at Fatikchari’s “Bibir Hat” bazar.
- If you going for the first time, take a local guide so that you don’t get lost at midway. You need to pay tk 500 from trail to Kalapani fountain.
Guide – Mahbub : 01636-706978
If you have plan for camping do contact them before you go, you can contact Ashish on this number (Ashish – 01817-273740) Just tell them the number of people, what you want to eat etc. in details.
- There are plenty of leeches there so be careful
- Keep enough water as you need to walk a long way
- At tea garden there will be indigenous people working, you should behave friendly with them. If you want pictures with them, take permission.
- Trail’s places are slippery and water level is deeper so be careful.
- During tree activity wear a jacket, so you can avoid any acciden.
- This area is neat and clean as it’s under forest department, so don’t throw trash here and there.