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The Bangladesh Experience with Christof Wolf

Die Bewohner von Dhangmari

Christof Wolf is specialized on reports, Outdoor topics and storytelling. He loves the feeling of freedom, which he experiences when taking pictures and traveling. In the untouched nature he comes to a rest and reflects on the essentials. These emotions and experiences are recognizable in his pictures. Therefore, they are authentic, meaningful and beautiful.

Christof wrote a blog about his last adventure in Bangladesh and we don’t want to deprive you of that:

“For many people, you are the first white person, they have ever seen in her life – brother” explains my interpreter, as we look on surprised people in front of their mud huts. Every pothole brings us nearer to the mangrove forests. There is scorching heat and humidity of more than 90%.

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A real adventure – even today?! Authentic culture and honest hospitality?! Yes, it’s possible! It’s also incredible important for me to experience all these things as a photographer. There is a big difference between a traveler being accepted as a guest and a normal tourist. I hope everyone had the opportunity to experience it.

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I had a project about Bangladesh in my head. A country, that doesn’t show up in any travel guide and which is more known for trading people and organs. But I was interested in something completely different. I wanted to go to the mangrove forests – to be exact: in the largest mangrove forests of our world. Here I wanted to meet the people, who are living in such an extraordinary place.

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Freshwater from the inland mixes with salt water from the sea in the mangroves. This mixture leads to bigger and better fish stocks, which helps the village people to find enough food to live.
At this place real culture is still existing, because here the people live the same, like they did hundreds of years ago. Without electricity, gas or running water – only from what they hunt and plant for themselves.

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My main focus was on the residents of “Dhangmari” – a small village on the river with the same name.

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The river Dhangmari is vital for every resident, but the controversy is: He takes away their living space more and more. The sandy earth, on which the village was build, is flushed out so much by the river – that this peaceful village will not exist in a few years anymore. Many will increasingly have to give up their existence.

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I wanted to perpetuate this place and the people, before they finally have to leave their culture behind.
So, I started my report and portrait-series in the mangroves, which meant to me: living in bamboo huts, charging batteries with car batteries, a lot of dust, dirt, joy, sickness and great friendships – that’s how my project came to be: “The residents of Dhangmari”.. 

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If you would like to see more, feel free to read it on my website or in one of the magazines published.
To Bangladesh as a country: photographically just incredible! If you have India on your list – postpone it. Travel this country as long as it is still untouched!

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Every corner has its own charm and you are showered by interesting characters. The people are open, friendly and sometimes even ask for you to take pictures of them. They don’t expect anything – as a traveler you’re just something special and as a traveler, especially. However, without any local contacts, a guide or interpreter – it will be really hard to work there.

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Sometimes I was even given a present – in one of the poorest countries in the whole world.
For me, a country completely foreign to tourism – but very familiar with hospitality.

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PS: Now it’s time for a photo trip to Bangladesh. In cooperation with my local contacts, I want to enable for others to experience what I have been looking for so long. Who is looking for an adventure, can take his chance and send a request to travel@christof-wolf.com.

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All images in this feature were kindly provided by Christof Wolf.
All images are under copyright. All rights reserved to Christof Wolf and compagnon GbR. More of Christof on Instagram and on Facebook

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