Varanasi Ghats

Varanasi Holidays

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Older than history, older than tradition

Travel back a few thousand years and explore this spiritual city on the banks of the sacred river

Is Varanasi the oldest city on earth? It certainly feels like it, being the oldest continuously inhabited place in the world. Varanasi is said to have been founded by the Hindu god Shiva and is the place where the Buddha gave his first teaching. Mark Twain described the city as “older than history, older than tradition, older even than legend, and looks twice as old as all of them put together”. You get the idea.

So step back a few thousand years and get lost in the winding alleyways of the old city, stretching along the western bank of the holy river Ganges. Head out early morning for a sunrise boat ride on the sacred river and see the faithful make their way to the riverside for morning prayers. Do some yoga on the rooftop of your haveli. In the evening see the river banks come to life with the aarti prayer rituals, as thousands of floating candles drift off into the sunset.

Varanasi is also one of the best places to enjoy an evening concert of traditional Hindustani classical music, mostly on the sitar and tabla.

Our favourite Varanasi hotels

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