Dr. M. Abdul Kaium: “Dhan nodi khal, ei tine Barshal” (Paddy-river-canal, these three are Barishal) — this proverb strikes a chord first when we talk about this region of the country. Truly, waterways, rivers and beels (wet land) scatter over the area.
One such beel close to Barisal district is Satla, which has as of late become a tourist destination.
The beel of red water lilies in Satla is a spectacular water body, where you have a huge ceremony of water lilies over a wide water expanse. The bubbling red water lilies will immediately arrest your eyes. It will appear as though a haven of red and white-water lilies are sitting expectantly for you on the unmistakable water. You glide from one side to the next on a vessel in this natural beauty spot.
The red lilies seem moving towards your pontoon to welcome you. The water lilies can be touched right away if you spread your hand. It will seem to you that countless water lilies sprouting in the waters of the beel appear to have beaten the red emanation of the sun.
Take a look at the red water lilies on the green Beel and you have the impression colours of Bangladesh flag are painted by the brush of a painter. This is an intriguing scene of clean and rural Bengal. Such blossoming water lilies can attract the attention of any Bengali. The beams of the morning as well as the setting sun add a lustrous dimension to the water lilies.
If you go early in the first part of the day, you can see the bubbling water lily. From 10 in the morning, the sun causes the petals of water lilies getting wrapped up. But after the evening, the blossoms start to sprout again.
The beel covers land claimed by around 100 people of the entire village. As per the data given by the people of the village, the area of SaplaBeel is around 600 acres of land. In course seasons, water lilies return to this enormous beel like visitor winged creatures for a long time. This bright look of the water lilies will dazzle anybody. One would think for a second, a sheet of red water lilies spread everywhere over the beel. That is why the name of the village has become ShaplaBeel.
Red water lilies generally blossom in September and October. As of now, tourists and nature darlings from various areas of the country rush there, for getting a glimpse of the stunning magnificence of the red water lilies over the green. Tourists come and take a pontoon ride in the beel, have a good time, take pictures and selfies. Some do not forget to show the stunning beauty of water lilies to their loved ones over a video call. The place has now become a major tourist spot.
ShaplaBeel is situated in the core of Satla village, around 60 km from Barisal town. Transports that leave from Barisal to Satla will cost you Tk 90 for each individual. You can also rent a motorcycle, a private vehicle or a Mahindra, which will cost you between Tk 500 and Tk 4,000. Because of the insufficiency of communication system and broken streets, the village was far out of vacationers’ interest even two or three years before. Nonetheless, because of the improvement of communication system, sightseers are now coming from all over the country. Because of various forms of media these days, the place has earned a great name for tourism.
More than one pontoon is prepared to show the beel to the visitors. The boatmen set up their vessels and hold them up at different places of the Beel. They paddle the vessel for a long time with the visitors.
As this colourfulShaplaBeel is turning out to be increasingly more appealing to tourists and travelers, its economic prospect is likewise increasing. If the number of internal and unfamiliar sightseers expands, the measure of income will certainly multiply.
For this to happen it is necessary to take certain steps. Vehicle administrations under public and private sponsorship, advancement of communication system, development of bathrooms and toilets for vacationers at the spot as well as trained boatmen can augment the number of sightseers. Activities ought to be taken to expand the interests and fascination of local and unfamiliar sightseers by more exposure and advertisement about this special place in the media. The beauty of ShaplaBeel and the endless potential of tourism that it holds also ought to be featured in the official branding.
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