St. Martin’s Island – Cox’s Bazar

Saint Martin’s Island is a coral island in the northeastern part of the Bay of Bengal in the southernmost part of Bangladesh. Covering an area of ​​about eight square kilometers, the island is located at the mouth of the Naf River, about 9 kilometers south of Teknaf in Cox’s Bazar district and 8 kilometers west of the coast of Myanmar. The three-sided foundation of the island is rock, which sinks at high tide and rises at low tide. Sonadia (Saint Martin’s Dbip) on St. Martin’s Island has an average elevation of 3.6 meters above sea level.

As long as the eye goes, only blue and blue, and it feels like the sky and the blue water of the sea are one and the same. If you want to enjoy this eye-catching beauty, visit St. Martin, the unique beautiful coral island in Bangladesh, which is also known as Narikel Gingira. The island was once known as Narikel Gingira (meaning Coconut Island) by locals because of its dense coconut groves.

It is said that in the first half of the seventh century, in unfavorable weather conditions, an Arabian merchant ship carrying cinnamon crashed into a huge rock under the water. As a result, the cinnamon boarded on the ship spread all over the island and hence the name St. Martin’s Island became ‘Cinnamon Island’. However, during a cadastral survey in the early part of the last century, the survey authorities probably named the coral island Saint Martin’s Island after a British saint.

The beauty of St. Martin, the only coral island in Bangladesh, cannot be overstated. Surrounded only by the blue sea, boats tied to the shore, rows of coconut trees and the rhythm of the waves, sometimes stopping, sometimes touching the gusts of wind, all these are the greatness of St. Martin’s Island which has made this small island uniquely beautiful. Coral Island is a unique place for those who are thirsty for knowledge and travel with its combination of sand, rocks, corals and biodiversity. Throughout the year, many people from different parts of the world flock here. The way of living of the people on this island, the incomparable harmony with the blue water of the sea creates a different kind of feeling.

Once you reach St. Martin, all your fatigue will be gone. It is difficult to stand still seeing its clear and blue water. You can swim in the water as you wish. However, it is better not to go into the water at low tide. At the south side of the island there are plenty of Keora bushes. There are some mangrove forests. Other plants include algae, seaweed, bay tree, etc. If you go to St. Martin, you will see the famous Humayun Ahmed’s much talked about ‘Shomudro Bilash’.The people of St, Martin’s Island are very simple; their warm hospitality is a major attraction of tourists.

Many tourists also spend the night here to enjoy the beauty of the night darkness (there are no electric lights) amidst the spectacular natural beauty and the actual ocean atmosphere. The unique experience of leaning your body on a beach chair and seeing the magical moon or the night sky inlaid with millions of stars as well as enjoying the roar of the ocean waves as well as thinking about the mysteries of creation is indescribable.

During the tourist season, 5 launches come and go from the mainland of Bangladesh every day. Every day more than three thousand tourists come to St. Martin’s Island in the morning to enjoy the beauty of the beach with the clear blue water surrounded by corals and they leave the island by 3 pm.

The real fun of St. Martin cannot be enjoyed without staying one night. Everyday tourists return in the afternoon, so the fun of visiting the island in the afternoon is different. And if you can go to the full moon, then there is no point in wandering around St. Martin’s Island at night and increasing your desire to live.

Bicycle rental

Bicycles can be rented from a few places on the island, especially from West Beach, for 60-80 taka per hour. However, these bicycles do not have brakes or bells. You can ride along the beach but you can’t ride with the van on the narrow streets of the island.

Electricity facility:

There is no PDB or rural electricity connection in St. Martin. Totally dependent on the generator. Resort-hotels usually run generators from evening to 10-11 pm. During the day the water pump can be turned on for a while. Since there is no fan in winter, there is no lack of current during the day. The problem is with charging mobiles, cameras and laptops. At nighty etmosphare with  the giltering and dazzaling row of restaurants with lights at the jetty, it does not seem that there is no electricity on the island. They keep the generator running for late nights.

How to get to St. Martin’s:

Teknaf can be reached by bus from Dhaka, Chittagong and Cox’s Bazar. Teknaf buses are available at Fakirapul and Sayedabad in Dhaka. Eagle, Modern Line, S Alam, Shyamoli, Green Line etc. buses go to Teknaf. It takes 10-13 hours to reach. Regular buses are available from Chittagong and Cox’s Bazar to Teknaf. Teknaf can also be reached by renting a micro bus from Cox’s Bazar.

You have to go to the shipyard of Teknaf and buy a ticket for seatruck . Rent 450-550 taka (with return). The distance from Teknaf to St. Martin is 9 km. Here you have to cross the rough sea. The sea is calm in winter so it is much safer to go here at this time. During this tourist season, there are several ships or sea-trucks going from Teknaf to St. Martin, including Green Line water buses, LC Kutubdia, Kajal, Kerry Sindbad. The ship left for St. Martin at 10 a.m. and returned at 3 p.m.

St. Martin’s can also be reached by trawler and speed boat. Sea trucks run until April. After that the administration don’t allow it to continue due to hostile weather. However, those who want to go to St. Martin as an adventure in the hostile season can rent a trawler. However, this journey is not very safe. Accidents don’t usually happen, but they can happen. So be careful. But for those who can’t cope with the temptation to see the real sea or take a rain bath on a deserted island, there is no alternative but a trawler, a trawler can be rented for 800 taka.or you can go for 100 taka per person.

Contact / phone number of  Kerry Sindbad : 01817210421, 0341-62812, 8125881.

Where to eat

There are restaurants in almost all residential hotels, so you can dine there if you want. Apart from this, you can order all the food by choosing from all kinds of live fish arranged on the table outside the hotel. You can BBQ at night, pick fish and tell them they will do it for you.

Where to stay in St. Martin’s

There are all types of accommodation facilities available from good, medium, to  normal. However, there are probably two places for first class-

  •  Blue Marine
  • Palace Paradise

Some of the famous places to stay are-

  • Abakash.
  • Samudra Bilash(Humayun Ahmed)
  • Nil diganta Resort

Names and telephone numbers of several hotels and resorts in St. Martin

  1. Blue merinah 01819063418, 01722473613, 01819063425, 028358485, 9342351, 9359230 (have to be booked from Dhaka)
  2. Coral Blue Resort: 01713190013, 01713190007
  3. Palace Paradise: 01713062569
  4. Pacific Resort: 01732434264 (Saint Martin), 01712643694, 01720939090 (Dhaka)
  5. Hotel Swapna Prabal: 01814274409, 01722545872 (St. Martin) 028611428, 01711-110919 (Dhaka)
  6. Samudra Bilas (Humayun Ahmed): 01813019839.
  7. Shimana periye: 01819018027, 01817042020 (St. Martin), 01819466059, 01819478434, 01911121292, 01711344451 (Dhaka) They also have tents. If you want, you can pitch a tent near the sea. The rent is reasonable. Between 500 and 800.
  8. 8.Nil digonte resort : 01730051004 (Saint Martin), 8652374, 01730051005 (Dhaka)
  9. Abakash tourism: 01713145584, 934 2351

Here are some tips to help you get around St. Martin’s:

  • From Dhaka to St. Martin, you can contact several travel agencies, including Carey.
  • The ship ran for only 4 months from November to March. If you want to go another time, you have to go by trawler.
  • St. Martin now has many hotels, resorts and cottages so there is no shortage of accommodation.
  • It is better not to go to the island on Friday-Saturday to stay at affordable prices.
  • Everything on the island comes from outside, so the cost of food is relatively high.
  • The most famous thing on this island is the coconut. The name of this island is Coconut Gingira. The coconut water here is as sweet as it is delicious. It would not be right to miss coconut water if you go to St. Martin.
  • Joke apart, I don’t think those who don’t eat fish have the right to go to St. Martin. Because the taste of coral, beautiful poya, hilsa, rupchanda, lobster, kalachanda is amazing in one word. One more thing you can try. That is kura (in the local language the native chicken is called kura). In the case of eating dried fish, you can try Laita, Churi, Rupchanda, and Kachki. But keep in mind that most of the dry goods come from Cox’s Bazar and Chittagong. Those who like hilsa very much should know that sea hilsa is not as tasty as river hilsa.
  • Those who visit St. Martin in January or February must not miss the watermelon. Although it is not very red to look at, it’s tasty.
  • Since Myanmar is next door, there are many types of pickles made there that have already won the hearts of the people, the most readily available in St. Martin.

If you have more information or any correction in this information please comment here.

Translate By Sadman Sakib,
Updated: September 17, 2021

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