Places to Visit in Varanasi
Varanasi is a city that will induce spiritual awakening in you. Whether you are visiting it as a tourist or a pilgrimage, you will sure to be dazzled with its simplicity, spirituality, sanctity, culture and tradition, consecration, heritage and education. The several epithets the city has earned for itself from being a ‘city of learning,’ ‘city of temple,’ ‘city of lights,’ ‘cultural capital of India,’ and ‘pilgrimage centre’ are the reasons that people continue to visit it. One visit to this city will transcend you to such a level from where you can see life differently.
Since Hinduism, Buddhism, and Jainism flourished in this city since the beginning, you will find infinite number of temples, Buddhist stupas built in Japanese, Indian, and Sri Lankan style, and Jain temples as well. Besides these worship houses, there are numerous places to visit in Varanasi. The city also has also stored relics of the past that provide a good source for studying the people, their lifestyles, what they observe and preached in the olden days. Both the ancient and modern ghats and temples are the major attraction of the city. Vishwanath temple, Durga temple, Bharat Mata temple, Sankat Mochan temple, and Tulsi Manas temple are crowded throughout the year. Of course, the holy Ganga River is always there to bless devotees with her water. Besides, no ritual is complete without a bath in the holy Ganga River.
While the temples and ghats will invoke a mystical feelings in your, there are other tourist attractions of Varanasi that will leave you in a state of trance as well. Some of the main attractions that are must in your itinerary list are the following:
The archaeological museum standing adjacent to the excavation site cloaked by the beauty of nature in Sarnath is a must to visit. The huge museum has collection of artifacts, sculptures, carved figurines, colossal, carved pillars with reliefs, statutes of Lord Buddha in meditation postures, and idols of the Trimurti in Buddhist form are awe-inspiring. It also has the country’s national emblem the Ashoka Pillar. Overall, the museum will create such a realistic picture of the past that you will actually feel like living in that era for a moment. When you finish covering observing the entire collection of the museum, which takes quite a time, you will star cursing the invaders for their blasphemy and stone-hearted nature.
The Chunar fort is sheltering a deep history in its chest. It has seen many bloodshed and change of hands for centuries. To reach this fort, you will have to travel for 40 km from Varanasi. The fort is facing the Ganges. It had been ruled for 500 years by number of rulers. The most prominent rulers who had enjoyed its glitz and grandeur were Sher Shah, Humayun, Akbar, Nawabs of Avadh, and the British. There are a few gravestones inside the fort of the British offices with inscriptions. The fort is constructed in sandstone as the area has a rich depository of these natural element.
ABC Art Gallery
If you are interested to know who the city adapted to the changing time, this art gallery will provide a great insight on that. It is facing Tulsi Manas Mandir at the Durga Kund Road. It is opened for public from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. There is a nominal entry fee. The gallery exhibits beautiful paintings of famous artists from every corner of India.
This is one of the oldest structures existing in Varanasi. It was built by Aurangazeb on the spot where the old Vishwanath temple once stood. It is standing near the Panchganga Ghat overlooking the holy Ganga. The beauty of this mosque is the mixture of Hindu and Persian style of architecture. It has carved pillars, massive domes, and turrets.
Covering all the tourist places of Varanasi is not a single day affair. If you want to enjoy the essence of every single location, you must visit the city in leisure. And believe it, each of the days in this holy city will struck a chord with you and you will crave to visit it again and again.