Hatirjheel water taxi: Escaping Dhaka’s traffic woes
Dhaka never seems to rest and the very mention of this city seems to conjure images of cars, buses, and rickshaws inching their way through seemingly endless traffic. For most urban dwellers, a day often begins with the monotonous sounds of traffic congestion. What if we told you amidst this chaos, there is respite awaiting you? That is Hatirjheel and its water taxis.
A regular user of the water taxis, who travels from Badda to BFDC, shares, "I use the water taxi to reach my office, which is in Farmgate. It allows me to start my day with a fresh mind — from sorting out the whole day's plan to saving time — overall, I find water taxis to be quite efficient and refreshing."
He further highlights, "Long hours spent stuck in traffic not only lead to frustration but also result in lost working hours, and thanks to water taxis, I don't have to endure this."
The water taxis are a practical way to commute — offering a break from the traffic congestion and allowing you to explore the city from a different perspective.
The city's public transportation system suffers from inefficiencies and overcrowding, making it less attractive for daily commuters. So, commuting by road can be a tedious and time-consuming affair, but water taxis offer a swift and hassle-free alternative.
Bandhan Das, an account executive, hops on the water taxis whenever he gets the chance — both for travelling to the office and to get a breath of fresh air.
"Unlike the chaotic and noisy streets of Dhaka, I find a water taxi ride in Hatirjheel far more peaceful. The fares are reasonable, and you can see disciplined queues of people availing the water taxis, unlike the local buses that feel suffocating to me," says Bandhan, while gazing at the scenic view of the lake.
The stress of navigating Dhaka's traffic is well-known, and it can take a toll on our mental well-being. Water taxis minimise this stress, allowing us to relax and enjoy our journey.
Water taxis are efficient for commuting — whether you are heading to work, a business meeting, or any other engagement, these boats make it a breeze to get around the city, but they equally serve as a well-liked tourist attraction.
Nilima Shorna, a homemaker, often visits Hatirjheel with her son to spend quality time. "There aren't many open spaces and recreational amenities for children in Dhaka," remarks Nilima, adding, "So, I come here with my son, and we both enjoy ourselves riding the water taxis."
Water taxis are perfect for family outings. Children and adults alike will relish the novelty of a boat ride and the opportunity to bond amid the picturesque surroundings. And for couples, a water taxi ride in the evening sets the stage for a romantic escapade!
So, how do you embark on an aquatic adventure in Hatirjheel? The process is simple and convenient. The water taxi service has jetties at five locations — Gulshan/Gudaraghat, Police Plaza, Badda, Rampura, and Karwan Bazar/BFDC. From Police Plaza to Karwan Bazar/BFDC, the ticket price is Tk 25, and to Rampura, it is Tk 20. The service is open from 6:30 AM to 10 AM.
As Dhaka continues to grow and evolve, innovative solutions like Hatirjheel's water taxis become essential. They not only provide a means of escape from traffic woes, but also contribute to a more efficient and enjoyable urban lifestyle.