Shrine of Hazrat Shah Jalal
Lonely Planet review for Shrine of Hazrat Shah Jalal
In the north of the city, off Airport Rd, is the Shrine of Hazrat Shah Jalal, a 14th-century Sufi saint. The shrine is one of the biggest pilgrimage sites in the country and a fascinating place to visit. Being buried near the saint is considered a great honour. Shah Jalal's sword and robes are preserved within the large new mosque, but aren't on display. The tomb is covered with rich brocade, and at night the space around it is illuminated with candles - the atmosphere is quite magical.
It's never entirely clear whether non-Muslims can visit the shrine, though it seems to be OK if you are suitably solemn and well dressed. Women, however, are definitely not allowed up to the tomb. The pond in front of the shrine complex is filled with sacred catfish that are fed by pilgrims and are, according to legend, metamorphosed black magicians of the Hindu raja Gour Govinda, who was defeated by Shah Jalal in 1303. Nearby is a deep, dark well containing something mysterious. What exactly that is remains a little uncertain - if our translation was correct, it's a giant goldfish with 'Allah' written on its forehead, but then again it might just as likely be the Loch Ness monster!
The complex is thronging with people day and night, including many beggars and disabled people asking for alms, so if you wish to donate bring plenty of small change with you.