The Legendary Ghats of Varanasi

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Leading Steps to the Life of Varanasi

Articulating the myths of Gods, the age-old Ghats of Varanasi is a lively platform for sundry happenings. The activities taking place on the Ghats cannot leave anybody getting intrigued. Take a stroll and find out – people taking a holy dip in river water, folks basking in the gentle heat of rising sun, happy riders drifting with the boats, hawkers looking forward for a customer, cow standing quietly. Home to innumerable doings, it is not an exaggeration to call these Ghats the lifeline of Varanasi.

From mesmerizing grand Aarti to mystifying cremation of dead bodies the Ghats of Varanasi is capable to pull you in its charm. It is very entertaining to watch variety of doings at a single stage – rituals performed by priests, Sadhus chanting prayers, children playing, stretch of sands on the opposite bank of Ganges, foreigners enjoying a boat ride, pilgrims taking a bath. Every alley of Varanasi gets engulfed in some Ghat and every Ghat is unique in its name and purpose for which it is used. There are nearly hundred Ghats, stretching along the bankside of River Ganges. With the sunrise, the Ghats get soaked in amber light and drama of the day begins. The surface of Ganges sparkling with orange sunrays, presents one of the best places to behold the beautiful sunrise. A boat ride on the tranquil water is most appropriate way to be a part of this wonderful scenery.

From perennial times the Ghats are performing multitudinous roles in their best way. Here are some famous Ghats and their enactment in the life of Varanasi.

Dashashwamedh Ghat – The most prime and oldest of all the Ghats, this is the very spot where photographic event of Maha-Aarti takes place every evening. Stage for one of the most highlighted rituals, Dashashwamedh Ghat gets crowded by thousands of devotees to behold the spiritual and panoramic scene. Chanting of Mantras, burning flames of huge brass lamps, aroma of incense sticks, invoking sound of conch shell and mass of devotees, are enough to awake the spiritual part in you.

Manikarnika Ghat – Never have seen a place which is entirely devoted to hold such a large number of cremations, nonetheless a celebration which invites so many viewer. This is Manikarnika Ghat, where you can see spiralling flames engulfing the dead body and liberating the immortal soul. The drama of life and death will surely lead anyone to the enigmatic question of life after death.

Assi Ghat – Being southernmost Ghat in Varanasi it is situated at the confluence of Ganges and Assi rivers. Home to       one the Lingas of Shiva, the Ghat is plunged by a lot of pilgrims to take a bath. Located near Banaras Hindu University, the place is lively with researchers, scholars and students. You can sip one of the best Chai of Varanasi, for which it is very famous among local folks.

The Ghats are the place where you can see all colours of Varanasi integrating. It is an outlook to see the other face of religion, spirituality, life and death.