The main tourist attractions include the old Mughal capital at Dhaka, nearby Sonargaon with its ancient architecture, the Buddhist cultural center of Mainamati, and the beach resort of Cox's Bazar. At the end of the 1980s tourism declined due to political unrest. Throughout the 1990s, however, figures have slowly increased. In 1997, 171,961 foreign visitors arrived. But in 2000, 199,211 tourists visited the country, nearly half from South Asia. As of 2000 year, there were 4,550 hotel rooms with 9,789 beds with a 49% occupancy rate. Tourism revenues totaled $50 million.
In 2001, the US government estimated the daily cost of staying in Dhaka at $174. Expenses in other areas can be much lower.