Exploring the outskirts of Dhaka and chilling out at “Begum Café”

Every time I’m done with a work week and another weekend rolls around, I find myself stumped. What can I do this weekend? Should I be predictable and go catch a movie? Or choose to be boring and stay at home? Should I give in to popular opinion and frequent one of the many eateries that are popping up like mushrooms? Or, exercise my individuality and get myself out of the hustle and bustle of the city, albeit for a short while?

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As always, I decided to go with the last option. Which is how, during a long and lazy weekend, some friends and I found ourselves discovering and exploring “Begum Café”, this adorable hangout spot on the outskirts of Dhaka.

HOW TO GET TO “BEGUM CAFÉ”

“Begum Café” is located a short distance away from the famous Zinda Park. Once you are on the Zinda Park road, keep going straight ahead and you will find this cute café a short distance down the road, located on your right.

IMPRESSIONS

I was equally intrigued and excited to explore this place after viewing a few photographs of this place someone had posted on a Facebook group. The exterior has been kept simple, being adorned by a quaint tricycle and an interesting ‘dolna’ (swing).

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Entering the café, take a moment to pause and admire the interesting décor. Enjoy the colorful umbrellas adorning the ceiling and explore the interesting artwork adorning the walls. I specifically loved the creativity found in a few of the poems and thoroughly enjoyed reading them whilst trying to decipher what the poet intended to present.

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I specifically loved the creativity
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Pause and admire the interesting décor
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Enjoy the colorful umbrellas adorning the ceiling!

A short wooden walkway will lead you to the backyard where you can choose to dine out in the open, amidst lush foliage, whilst simultaneously enjoying the comfort of the familiar chairs and tables which are artistically arranged.

But the real highlight over here is the boat. Yes, you heard me right – the boat. Because, in Begum Café, you will have the unique opportunity to dine out on a boat, on dry land, whilst basking in the afternoon sunlight. Leave your shoes on the little ‘pier’, step onto the boat and get comfortable.

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Time loses meaning and you can happily just enjoy the calmness and serenity.

One thing I absolutely loved about this place was the unhurried pace I found there. You will find that time loses meaning and you can happily just enjoy the calmness and serenity. The staff is considerate without being obtrusive. We asked for their recommendations and decided to try out their “Kacha Aam-er Shorbot” (raw, green mango juice),  “Special Tea” (made with pure milk from the neighboring countryside), accompanied with “Gajor-er-Halwa” (carrot sweet dish) and “Gorom Paratha” (hot, freshly made flatbreads).

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In Begum Café, you will have the unique opportunity to dine out on a boat, on dry land, whilst basking in the afternoon sunlight.
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“Special Tea” (made with pure milk from the neighboring countryside), accompanied with “Gajor-er-Halwa” (carrot sweet dish) and “Gorom Paratha” (hot, freshly made flatbreads).

Also, cat lovers rejoice! We encountered the cutest tabby, who actually was pretty decent company!

I was also quite impressed by the facilities. As a general rule of thumb I do try to avoid public restrooms unless absolutely necessary, but their restrooms were quite clean and adequately supplied with the necessities; or maybe I just happened to be super lucky that day! Regardless of it all, make this place your next weekend venture, whilst it’s still charming and new!

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