Ghats of Varanasi - Combination of Traditions
Sprawling on the banks of the river Ganga, are the famous Varanasi Ghats
(river landings) in the holy town of Benaras, that is believed to be the oldest living city in the world. This land is so pious that here even dying is venerable as a blessing. This is indeed the city of lights that has inspired artists with its lucidity and attributes. Varanasi is also known as Benaras or Kashi. Once you are inside the town every street and lane seem to be leading to the ghats. The best time to applaud these ghat is at sunrise when the pious ones come to to take a dip in the holy Ganges. The ghats are the reference to the flight of stones steps that are hundreds of years old. These ghats teem with life and the main attraction lies in just being a silent spectator of the happenings around. Pilgrim priests preaching, barbers shaving the heads, 'Sadhus' meditating and performing their rituals, is a very common sight. Thousands of pilgrim make their way to these ghats for the holy bathe, which the believe is the way to relieve them of all their sins. There are five most important ghats are - Dasaswamedh Ghat, Manikarnika Ghat, Harischandra Ghat, Kabir Ghat and Tulsi Ghat. A bathe in all of these ghats make a complete pilgrimage. The most capricious event will be watching a cremation on the Manikarnika ghat. The sound of 'Hare Rama Hare Krishna' echoes all over the place. Watching the rituals being performed is another avid experience. The ghats at Varanasi is the only place where one can get to see the confluence of life and death. Sunset is another good time to enjoy the scenic beauty of the ghats.
Celebrate the Culture of the Oldest City in the World
Watching the religious ceremonials being performed with the backdrop of the setting sun is enigmatic. Take a rowing boat down the Ganges to observe the landscape in the best possible way. The sun goes down in a blazing trail as if it is going to sleep in the lap of the Ganga as the priests get ready for the evening Aarti to the river. The best way to savor this is by taking a boat ride along the ghats. As you cruise along the Manikarnika ghat, the omnipresent funeral pyre will remind you of the ultimate truth of life. Along the ghats observe the small hut shaped shops selling lamps, images of God and Goddesses and holy books, if interested can pick for piece of mind. These are the stalls that have been the prime source of living for various people who come out and set stalls selling practically everything. Stumbling across the alleys of this old town is the way to achieve the pleasure of reaching this heaven. The temples on the Ganga ghats have properties to cleanse the mind, body and soul of a human being. The most important temple that is believed to be thousands of years old is Vishwanath temple, Annapurna temple and Bharat Mata temple. Visit these temples that will give a clearer insight on the joyful religion of Hinduism. These ghats are the perfect location to see beliefs get blanketed in religiousness.
Visiting Varanasi is an obligation that one should always perform at least once in a lifetime. There is no other land that even comes even a little close to the authenticity and piousness that is incorporated on the banks of these ghats.