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Feature Experiences
Experiences
Staying Centered: Spirituality and Religion
It is the heart of Hinduism and the cycle of life. Varanasi will open its doors and show you the truth that lies within this country. This city is definitely going to leave an impression and you will be mesmerized with all it has to offer.
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Varanasi

Purity and Truth runs from the highest energy, as the Ganges flows from the mane of Lord Shiva down to "the holy city". The land of knowledge, spiritualism and religion resides here, in the heart of India, Varanasi.

Varanasi, the mystical city, where you will want to get lost, bumping into yogis in cosmic trances and priests in meditative chants, is one where you will find both serenity and wisdom. As you rise at the crack of dawn, with the sunrays casting a glow over the city, you’ll find yourself filled with a new force, new energy, basking in the light of peace, calm and tranquillity.

 

The Ancient city comes to life with many visitors all eager for her blessings. Temples begin to bustle with devotees making offerings as bells chime answering each prayer. The Ganges offers herself to all who come for her serenity and knowledge. Even as the day ends, oil lamps hold that one last gaze lasting a lifetime of impressions.


Must Dos

Varanasi
  • Visit the Ghats where you will see hundreds of priests performing sacred rituals.
  • Evening aarti at the ghats: In what can be described as one of the most mesmerising moments of a lifetime, the evening Ganga aarti (offering by a devotee to seek blessings from the gods and goddesses) in the holy city of Varanasi is bound to move you and fill your spirit with great fervour and delight.
  • Boat ride on the Ganges: Ask anyone who has been to Varanasi and they’ll tell you that a quiet boat ride on the sacred river pervades you with spirituality and mysticism. Don’t miss it.
  • Shopping: Visit some of the traditional weavers and buy brocades and rich Benrasi silk sarees that are still handmade in rich colours and hues.
  • Walk through the city: The best way to experience Varanasi is to walk through the rugged footpaths of the city and explore some of the oldest houses, structures and shops that define it. While at it, don’t miss the traditional Varanasi breakfast; puffed hot pooris (type of bread) served with potato curry, special tomato chaat, stuffed green pea kachoris.


Activities in and Around the City

Satpura
The evening aarti
Hour or more, depending on how long the guest wishes to stay.
To soak in the spiritual pleasures of the holy city.
The evening aarti in Varanasi: On the ghats of Dashahwamedh, select young priests make a devotional offering to the holy river with incense, clarified buttered candle wicks in tall brass stands with bells, fans, drumbeats and chants to thank the Ganges and Lord Shiva for protecting them through the day. The sight of the priests moving the tall brass aarti stands in hypnotic movements while chanting from the sacred Hindu texts will surely fascinate the tourists who are observing this ritual for the first time.  Don’t miss it for it’s a sight that can be seen nowhere else but in select holy cities of India. You can make an aarti offering too; watching your own little ‘diya’ float with million others as the sun sets in the evening and the river glows.

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Satpura
Silk shopping
Hour or more, depending upon the guest.
Familiarise yourself with the finest silk textiles that are deftly converted into rich apparel by weavers and crafts persons even today.
A trip to Varanasi is incomplete if you don’t have a rich Benarasi silk saree in your suitcase to take back home. In many North Indian weddings, girls are married off in Benarasi silk sarees and even today, a wedding trousseau is incomplete if a handcrafted traditional red Benarasi saree in silk is not a part of it. As you walk through the numerous bylanes of the city, you can still find weavers painstakingly creating such sarees with myriad patterns in gold and silver thread. Your best bet is to pick up sarees from the weavers directly, given that they struggle to beat competition by cheap China silk variety that seemed to have hogged their market.

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