Alive in the Hindu mythological texts with the name of Kashi, an ethereal city situated on the banks of divine Ganges - Varanasi honours souls!
To dive into the mysteries of death, re-births, karma and nirvana, there is no place better than the Ghats of Varanasi. The city celebrates the joys of life and witnesses the sorrows of death, all with pride and utmost respect in its heart.
Beginning from the wee-hours of the days to the time the moon shines bright in the starry-sky, Varanasi has a life that encapsulates one and all. The morning rituals on stairs leading to the holy river, decorated with the fragrance of bright marigolds; devouring scrumptious traditional delights or stargazing on an open boat in the middle of the calmly flowing Ganga, the city has something for everyone.
And this is how you can experience it the best:
1. Admire The Riverside On A Boat
Feel the rays of the morning sun at the riverside and get the classic Varanasi vibe. Watch people flock together to bathe in Ganga, as a sign of devotion. Let the boat lead you to the ghats of Varanasi, as you hear compelling stories about why Varanasi stands out, and also about the Maharajas who brought the ghats to life. This endeavour will leave you feeling positive from the core.
2. Get On A Tasteful Adventure
The refreshing flavour of mint leaves in the special Varanasi paan, the enticing crunch of the famous kachoris(patties) or the heaven-send sugary taste of the rabdi and cham-cham, Varanasi serves food for the gods. Strolling in the ambrosial lanes here is enough to awaken the appetite of any! Bonus point? You can also interact with the friendly people who make them!
3. Understand The Philosophy of Life & Death
Walking through the burning Ghats, witnessing the unworldly Hindu rituals and tantric meditating in the cremation grounds is larger than life moment in the mighty city of Varanasi. Explore the line between life and death at an ashram of tantric non-dualism, which is represented by black-clothed renunciants who meditate where the cremation takes place. Scary yet intriguing, here you will cross the threshold of your comfort zone, to perceive the world with depth.
4. Step Into The Heritage
The shadows that back the divine city of Varanasi are manifold and not just limited to its incense stick smelling Ghats crowded with an array of saints and sadhus. Trace the path of the 16th-century poet from Banaras named Pandit Goswami Tulsidas, who translated the sacred Ramayana. Find out where he lived and how he lived, after which you can visit temples & other sacred sites to enlighten yourself with historical & cultural facts.
5. Capture The City In A Frame
Capturing the intense moments set forth by the city is not common to all! Allow a professional photographer and storyteller, who is in love with Varanasi, to show you around the city and teach you how to capture what you find interesting with a camera. There are a technique and art behind photography that you can learn about. And perhaps, go on a photo walk?
6. Enjoy Varanasi At Dusk
The dramatically cloudy, pre-dawn sky above one’s head and the beautifully balmy and divine Ganges around, stitches together the gentlest and heart-pleasing evening of one’s life. Calmly sway on a private cruise through River Ganga and witness the traditional evening prayer. The heartful music will fill your ears, and the beautiful stories will pacify your mind, with the sun setting in the backdrop. Devour a home-cooked meal in the middle of the river and weave memories that you will want to relive time & again.