Varanasi is a place which is powerfully celebrated as the cultural capital all over India. The city is considered to be as old as the world itself and is believed to be established by Lord Shiva himself. The city is famous for its bathing Ghats, ancient temples, old folklore music, silk fabric, and ivory work. There is a total of 89 Ghats in Varanasi visited by thousands of pilgrims every day in the wake of attaining salvation after death. But, the only handful of them is popular in Varanasi.
Many Ghats do offer boat rides where you can have a very celestial view of the old city of Varanasi, mostly during dawn. A walk along those Ghats can also be a very fascinating experience for those who wish to witness the Indian culture. But before going for a walk along those Ghats, please brace yourself against bickering of shop vendors and a frequent wandering mob.
Below, is the list of top 8 Ghats that needs to be walked during your journey to Varanasi but prefer walking there during sunset because the sunset at the Ghats are majorly accompanied by the famous Aarti ritual where you can see the beauty of Indian culture.
Assi ghat is in the Southernmost part of Varanasi and it was named after the river Assi which mixes with river Ganges at this ghat. You may not encounter a large crowd over here because of its location so a trip to this Ghat will offer you many chances to explore the Indian culture in peace. Here, many pilgrims firstly take a dip in the river Ganges and after that, they worship Lord Shiva lingam statue under a peepal tree. The beauty of this Ghats magnifies million during the early morning Aarti at 5:30 AM.
This is the most popular ghat of Varanasi and oldest of all the other Ghats. As per legend, Lord Brahma sacrificed a horse in a sacred ritual in order to welcome Lord Shiva. The Ghat is mostly famous for its Ganga Aarti which usually takes place around 6 in the evening and is followed by a huge number of visitors. It is also one of the picturesque processes which is captured by many visitors either because of reverence or because of curiosity towards Indian culture.
Darbhanga Ghat is the most photogenic ghat out of all the other Ghats in Varanasi which gives away a very vintage feel in every image. The ghat especially features a very beautiful palace and you can also climb up to this palace from where you can take some breathtaking shots of the surrounding. The palace also offers a stay in an option where you get to enjoy some time in royalty in Varanasi.
The most stand out ghat of Varanasi which is also popularly known as the burning ghat. It earned its name as the burning ghat because dead bodies are cremated at this ghat upon a popular belief of liberating the loved ones from the cycle of death and birth. It may not be a very promising site to the people who are not accustomed to these kinds of rituals so can advise themselves to not stay here much longer.
Tulsi Ghat has got its importance from an event that occurred many centuries ago when Ramcharitmanas (a manuscript based on the lives of Lord Rama and Goddess Sita) written by the most popular Hindu poet Tulsidas fell into the river in this ghat. The most surprising scene about that incident was that the manuscript didn’t drown but rather float in the river. It will be a nice walk on this ghat and you can also check out the museum here preserving the things of that poet.
Chet Singh Ghat
This Ghat is rather showcasing a very historical site to its every visitor. The fort is famous because here a battle was conducted between the Maharaja Chet Singh who was ruling Varanasi at that time and the British nationals. But unfortunately, the king was defeated by the British nationals and later, he was captured inside this fort. So, if you would want to revisit our history and see how bravely people fought for the freedom then, it is a must visit.
Harishchandra ghat is also one of the oldest Ghats in Varanasi which has earned its name after a king who was popular because of its charity work which majorly took place on this ghat. After seeing the king’s perseverance, Lord Shiva blessed him by giving his kingdom and his son to him back. The ghat also runs on a very popular belief that if someone gets cremated at this ghat then, he or she will surely attain salvation.
Man Mandir Ghat
Man Mandir Ghat is also a very popular ghat because of proudly showcasing Rajput architecture. Maharaja Man Singh in early 1600 built this palace which later opened an observatory where major astronomical instruments are exhibited for the visitors. You will get a panoramic view of Varanasi and river Ganges after climbing to the terrace of this palace.
So, on your next visit to Varanasi, don’t forget to walk these Ghats and enjoy the beautiful Indian culture. And moreover, focus on taking a boat ride at one of these Ghats to see the authentic beauty of Varanasi and nature.