The spiritual capital of the country, Varanasi on the banks of Ganges has a vibe that is the most peaceful. The air is fragrant with the smell of marigolds, and alive with faint chanting. The food is another reason you should park yourself in this city for 2-3 days. The land of Shiva is the most serene destination we have been to. Just sitting at the banks is like someone singing lullaby to our cranky minds. Also known as Benaras, Banaras and Kashi, the city is also a cultural centre and famous for its exquisite craftsmanship. After all, isn’t the Benarasi sari a must have for every bride.
3 days - 2 nights
- We land in the city by afternoon. We drive half-way to our hotels, eating packed lunch on the way. Then we get onto boats to reach our place of stay. A little about the place where we are putting up. It's on the banks of Ganges. Our rooms have a view of the Ganges. And we reach our hotel sitting on boats. Isn't that going to be awesome.
-We check-in our hotel rooms and relax a little.
- Early in the evening we go to the ghat and witness the grand aarti from the steps. It is a spectacle with the chanting and bells tolling. The atmosphere is rife with a feeling of being one with the universe. It's like meditating to the chants, the bells and of course the pacifying laps of the Ganges. The travel pals will be describing the sights through out.
- For dinner we gorge on the local food. We are thinking of the famous Chaats of Benaras. You could take a pick from Tomato Chaat, Crispy Paalak Chaat or Creamy Dahi Bhalla. We recommend all.
- For breakfast, we try out more local food. We then go for a Heritage Walk through the narrow lanes of old Benaras. The lanes are thousands of years old, and walking through them you will feel like visiting the old city in all its glory. While there we have the very famous Lassi of Benaras. They have so many flavours of lassi that you will be spoilt for choice.
- For lunch we go to this Thali Place where we get to eat batti-chokha and so much more. Then head back to the hotel
for some rest.
-In the evening we go to the weavers' colony. Here we see the old way of weaving which the craftsmen of Benaras still practice. We visit more ghats of this famed city. Try some world famous Banarasi paan.
- We end the day by devouring Kachoris. Another favourite food of the locals, and no one makes it better than the Banarasi babus.
- Early morning we take a boat ride on the Ganges to witness the sunrise. That's not all, Classical Musicians will accompany us. So we have LIVE music on our boats. Imagine listening to live performance by a musician on a sitar/seedha veena accompanied by tabla at sunrise, on the Ganges. Am already there.
- We have breakfast and then check out from our hotel.
- We take a boat ride and then drive to the airport. Bye Benaras, see you soon.
- Stay on twin sharing basis.
- Commute within the city
- Transport to and from Varanasi airport in a hired bus*
- 2 meals on Day 1, 3 meals on Day 2, 1 meal on Day 3 (also, 1 serving each of paan and lassi)
- Boat rides and live music mentioned in the itinerary
- Heritage walk with a local expert
- Assistance from travel pal
- Flight tickets to and from Varanasi
- Any personal expense like shopping, etc
- Water bought for personal consumption
- *Those arriving a day prior or leaving at a time later or earlier than the scheduled bus
departure from hotel, need to pay extra for the commute to the airport.
- Anything not included in inclusions
Note: Contact us for recommended flights from your city to Varanasi. Single occupancy can be arranged at an extra cost.
Image courtesy: Kavita Ojha and Biswajit Das