Hill tracks are some of the best of things that can offer an awesome adventure as well as some crazy views. Then if someone says you can touch clouds there with your own hand, then it becomes something else, something unreal. There are not a lot of hilly areas in the world that can offer this mind-blowing experience. Sajek Valley of Rangamati is one of them which can.
Sajek Valley is situated at Sajek union of BaghaichariUpazila in Rangamati. This is known as the biggest Union of Bangladesh. It is approximately 2000 feet high from the sea level. Sajek valley is named after a river that originated from Karnafuli also called Sajek. For its height it is also called “Roof of Rangamati”.
Sajek valley is one of the most attractive holiday destinations for tourists all over the world. Green hills all around the valley make the place heavenly calm and beautiful. The route from Khagrachari to Sajek which is used by most travelers to reach the valley can give you a mesmerizing road trip experience. Vehicles riding on the zigzag road beside huge hills followed by clouds, can offer thrilling experience which is a bit risky too. Most of the mobile operators doesn’t have much network access in Sajek which may seem unusual but it if you see from a different angel, it can be a rare opportunity to pass some genuine alone time and feel the nature in your veins. The weather of Sajek is also dramatic. It can change drastically over time. In the morning there is usually dense fog all around, then it might become sunny or tourists can enjoy a few rain drops. At night the sky becomes so clear and it feels like you can literally touch the stars.
How to go
Although Sajek is located in Rangamati district, the easiest way to go there is through Khagrachari. To reach Khagrachari from either Chittagong or Dhaka is easy. There are several buses that will take you directly to Khagrachari. From there you have several options available to reach Sajek that will depend on you.
The first choice is hiring a jeep which will take you directly to Sajek. Locals call these jeeps “ChanderGari”. It will cost around 4000-5000 taka to reserve those jeeps. If you plan to return before sunset it will cost you less. But if you want to stay overnight you have to contact the driver or there are other jeeps that are going to return after offloading passengers. If the number of tourists is bigger it is wise to hire jeeps. The journey is more fun via jeep compared to other options.
The second choice is 3 wheelers driven by CNG. These vehicles can carry up to five peoples. This option will cost around 2500-3000 taka.
The next option is motorcycle. But you have to go to Dighinala first from Khagrachari to hire them. Local buses take 45 taka. per person for this route. Motorcycles can carry 3 passengers including the driver. The cost of two-way around trip will cost up to 1200-1300 taka via motorcycle.
Travellers can also come through Rangamati by engine vessels. It will take up to 5-6 hours and it will cost around 200 taka from Rangamati to Baghaichari. From Baghaichari you can hire vehicles to Sajek that will cost you around 300-400 taka.
Where to stay
There are some government and privately owned resorts and guest houses in Sajek. Runmoy Resort, Sajek Resort, Alo Resort, Ruilui Para Club House, MeghMachang, these are some hotels to stay. Hotels in Sajek are expensive than usual but then, you have to compromise something to get better of a memorable journey. To extend the adventure and fun you can do camping in Sajek. There are many places for camping but you have to inform the Army forces to do that.
Some resorts have their own restaurants, if you stay at club houses you have to manage foods by caretakers. There are also some local hotels where you can have decent meal. If you want to cook yourself hotel managers will help you. You can cook rice and vegetables easily but you have to visit Machalang Bazar to buy meat and fish. Army canteens also provide foods, but they are a bit pricey comparatively.
- Best time to visit Sajek is in winter. But if you want to be a little more adventurous and to witness the real beauty of hills you have to choose the rainy seasons.
- Transportation cost could be a bit tricky here. Remember to bargain every time while hiring a vehicle.
- Make sure to book a resort before your trip. In seasons you have to make reservations days before.
- There is no electricity there. So don’t forget to bring power banks to keep your phone switched on.
- Bring chocolates with you if you want to visit the local tribes. Children expect candy from travellers.
- There is a scarcity of drinking water. Be sure to buy water bottles from local bazar.
- Mosquito borne diseases like malaria, dengue are common in hilly areas. Keep this in mind and take counteractive steps.