The Indian city Varanasi is one of the ancient cities of the world. It is located on the western bank of the river Ganga and expands beyond the bank of the river into a maze of alleys. Also known as Kashi, Benares and Banaras, the city portrays a perfect blend of culture and religion. Let’s have a glimpse at some of the beautiful attractions of Varanasi:
Sunrise on the river Ganga: Varanasi has something different to offer every time you visit it. The calm waters of Ganga, boat ride in the beautiful sunrise, a range of shrines and the elevated banks of the ‘Ghats’ offer a spiritually enriching experience that is exclusive to this city.
Morning ‘Aartis’(prayers): Varanasi awakens to the soothing morning prayers at the holy river. Hordes of Pilgrims gather at the Ganga for ‘morning Aarti’ before the dawn when the sun rises on the horizon.
A look at the Ghats: The city of Varanasi is a haven for the pilgrims owing to its ancient Ghats. The enchanting sounds of temple bells, the fragrance of colorful flowers and the resonating chants greet the day here.
Chet Singh Ghat: This ghat is entrenched in its own history. It witnessed a furious battle between Chet Singh and Warren Hastings in 1781.
Ahliya Ghat: The ghat is the first one to be named after a person. It got its name from Ahliya Baj Holkar-the warrior queen of Indore. The ghat witnesses mornings with a swarm of tourists gathering to take a dip in the holy waters.
Prayag Ghat: Brimmed with devotees that assemble to offer their prayers night and day, the ghat forms one of the crucial sections of the Varanasi Ghats.
Munshi Ghat: Munshi Ghat is one of the most attractive and architecturally inspiring ghat. It is an extension of the well known ‘Darabhnaga Ghat’ and is bordered by a magnificent palace built by a royal family of Bihar in 1900s.
Evening prayers at the Dashashwamedh Ghat: The Dashashwamedh Ghats livens up around dusk with the evening Aarti at the Ganga. Performed by priests or ‘Pundits’ clad in saffron, the evening Aarti is a detailed ceremony full of Puja, Fire and Dance. The bank of the river lights up with blazing lamps and the Ghat is scented with the smell of sandalwood. The movements of the lamps held in the hands of the Pundits are perfectly synchronized with the reverberations of the cymbals and the recurring chants.
Sri Kashi Vishwanath Temple: It is one of the oldest temples and is at a little distance from Ganga. The temple also forms the beginning point of ‘Panchkoshi Yatra’- a sacred 88.5 kilometers long barefoot walk encompassing Kashi.
Varanasi Streets: Some say that the streets of Varanasi hold the charisma of the city. The streets are quite narrow and difficult for traffic to pass. Do not fear getting lost in them as sooner or later you will reach the main street or the front of the river. For collecting some souvenirs, visit the Vishwanath Temple or head to the tracks in the vicinity of the Ghats.
Ramnagar Fort: This fort of the 17th century forms a wonderful place to view the sunset over the river. It nestles a museum and a temple inside its compound and was built by the ‘Maharajas of Banaras’.
The holy city of Varanasi is packed with temples and pilgrims from across the world visit it to catch a glimpse of religion and faith. Book a cheap flight with Tripbeam and visit this city to get closer to religion and spirituality.
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