Varanasi also known as Banaras or Kashi, is a city on the banks of the Ganges in Uttar Pradesh. It is holiest of the seven sacred cities in Hinduism and Jainism. Hindus believe that death at Varanasi brings salvation. It is one of the oldest continuously inhabited cities in the world and the oldest in India. Gautama Buddha gave his first sermon at Sarnath located near Varanasi. Varanasi is the spiritual capital of India. Varanasi is often referred to as the city of temples, the holy city of India, the religious capital of India, the city of lights, the city of learning and the oldest living city on earth.
Khajuraho is a small town located in the Bundelkhand region of Madhya Pradesh and is famous for groups of Hindu and Jain temples. These temples are a UNESCO World Heritage Site for their beautiful and erotic rock carvings.
Khajuraho has the Vindhya Range of mountains as its beautiful backdrop. This makes Khajuraho a more fascinating destination to visit. Khajuraho's art is a manifestation of the essence of the philosophy of Indian aesthetics. The erotic sculptures of Khajuraho depicting Kama Sutra are unique in the world.
Day 01: Arrival Varanasi
Arrive the oldest spiritual living city in the world, Varanasi. Named after the two tributaries of Ganges that flows through the city named Varuna and Assi rivers, Abode of Lord Shiva and Parvati, the origins of Varanasi are yet unknown. A city of traditional classical culture, it is the microcosm of Hinduism. Blessed by a legend and revered by religion, it has always lured a large number of pilgrims and worshippers from times immemorial. A city with rich and vibrant past, it has no exquisitely carved palaces, no impregnable fort, and no architectural splendor but still has an inherent charm of its own, with ghats dotted with temples and maze of alleys alongside. Transfer to the hotel. Later in the afternoon visit a silk weaving village to witness the unique art of weaving silk and shop for souvenirs. Evening witness the Grand prayer (Aarti) ceremony conducted on the Ghats of River Ganges. You will be transferred to a surreal world, as dozens of big lamps are lighted and swayed in semi circle, in tandem by the priests to offer prayers, while singing of Vedic hymns and playing of the traditional instruments, while the visitors release 100 of small earthen lamps with flickering lights. Return to the hotel for overnight stay at the hotel. (D)
Day 02: Varanasi
Wake up early morning around 0530hrs and proceed to enjoy the sunrise boat ride on river Ganges. The river will be thronged with early morning bathers, raising their faces to the rising sun and reciting the sacred mantra. One can see the perpetual movement of the pilgrims on the steps, the vivid colours of their clothes glistening against the pale gold water, the triangular flags fluttering atop the temple spires. It is believed as per Hindu mythology that bathing in the holy river of Ganga causes the remission of sins and facilitates the attainment of nirvana. Hindus also believe that one who is graced to die on the land of Varanasi would attain salvation and freedom from the cycle of birth and re-birth. Visit the Banaras ghat, Asi ghat & various other ghats. Return back to hotel for buffet breakfast. After breakfast, proceed for morning city tour of Varanasi visiting various temples, some of the most prominent amongst them is the Kashi Vishwanath Temple, one of the most sacred Shiv Temples for Hindus & Bharat Mata temple, where the map of undivided India is inscribed in stone and prayed instead of any god or goddess . Later in the afternoon visit Sarnath - the site of the deer park where Gautama Buddha is said to have given his first sermon about the basic principles of Buddhism. It has been a premier centre for Buddhism and has a rich collection of ancient Buddhist relics and antiques comprising of numerous Buddha and Bodhisattva images on display at the Museum. Stay overnight at the hotel. (B,D)
Day 03: Varanasi – Khajuraho (Flight: TBA)
After breakfast transfer to the airport to board flight to Khajuraho. Arrive at this small modest village with no more than 3000 residents surrounded by forestland, but thousand years ago it was a large city of the Chandellas, medieval Rajput kings who ruled over Central India. In the afternoon visit the Chandella temples which are the excellent example of Indo-Aryan architecture. The remoteness and isolation of Khajuraho have ensured the survival of these great treasures built during the 10th century. Famed for their erotic sculptures, the temples in fact depict an exquisite detail of the everyday life of people of that era. Now only 22 of the original 85 are surviving, which are great shrines of love and are abound in timeless quality, earning for them the status of world heritage monuments. The Khajuraho temples represent a happy and almost unique coincidence of religious emotion, abundant patronage, artistic genius, and aesthetic sensibility. After the sightseeing explore the village and stay at Khajuraho. Stay overnight at hotel. (B,D)
Day 04: Departure Khajuraho
Morning enjoy a leisurely breakfast at the hotel. Later, in time transfer to the airport to board the onward flight. (B)
- 03 night’s hotel accommodation with private facility.
- Travel, transfer and sightseeing by private air-conditions car with driver as per itinerary.
- Meals as specified (B=Breakfast, D=Dinner)
- Entrance fee & Monument charges.
- 01 Boat ride.
- Local English speaking tour guide during sightseeing as mentioned in the itinerary.
- All current taxes.