The Significance of Tourist Guides and the Inclusion of Locals in Contemporary Tourism: A Case from Nabaratna Temple Compound, Sirajganj, Bangladesh

Md. Rifat-Ur-Rahman

Travelers travel for adventure in the joy of freedom to overcome the fatigue of busy life. Through a pleasure trip, travelers enrich themselves by acquiring knowledge that paces a rhythmic life. Travelers have traveled across deserts, seas, and mountains for thousands of years. In the ancient times of Bangladesh, many tourists wrote biographies of the country’s geography to see the life of the people and acquire knowledge, including Hiuen Tsang, Fa-Hien, and Ibn Battuta is particularly noteworthy. In addition to the splendid beauty of Bangladesh, the country has a long prosperous cultural history. Numerous archaeological sites scattered across the country bear witness that human migration has continued in this country for a long time. Among the archaeological sites, a remarkable site is known as Nabaratna Temple Compound, located at Hatikumrul in the Sirajganj district. At the beginning of 2022, the four artistic temples, including Nabaratna Temple, Dochala Temple, Shiva-Parbati Temple, and Shiva Temple, adjacent in a very close location, revisited to apprehend the significance of tourist guides in transforming Bangladesh’s archaeological sites into sustainable cultural heritage-based tourism. Methodologically, following the qualitative descriptive approach, including participants’ observation, the unstructured questionnaire-based interview, and archaeological survey seek to understand the potential of abandoned cultural heritage-based tourism in this country by including locals as tourist guides, as the profession has become very popular in the tourism sector in many countries worldwide.

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