North of Varanasi- Side telling a different story
Varanasi is the oldest city of India and seekers from across the world get attracted to this sacred city. The city isn’t just is a famous Hindu pilgrimage destination, but Sikhism, Jainism, even Christianity came here to share and spread the religion. Situated just a few kilometers from Varanasi, Sarnath is a famous place in Buddhist pilgrimage tours. It is said coming to Varanasi is like coming to the ocean of knowledge. North of Varanasi is completely a different site from Southern Varanasi. Take the North Varanasi heritage tour walk to discover the new side of the holy city.
Girjaghar (St. Thomas Church)–
Lies in the heart of the oldest city, Girjaghar is the first stop in the North Varanasi heritage tour walk. Old St. Thomas Church in Godowlia is another place that attracts tons of tourists towards it. According to the lore, Saint Thomas, one of 12 Jesus’s apostles visited the city nearly 52 AD to 72 Ad. He was an only apostle who went beyond the Roman Empire to sermonize the Gospels. Yet, there is no such proof to know the history of this sacred place. The church was built by East India Company during its rule to honor Saint Thomas.
Kashiraj Kali Temple–
Make sure to visit this secret temple of Varanasi in your next Kashi Yatra. Located on Bansphatak road just a few steps from Gowdalia chowk, Kashiraj Kali temple is easily accessible yet hard to found a place in Varanasi. The temple was built by Kashi Naresh Maharaja Ishwari Narayan Singh, as a private temple for the royal family in the year 1886. The temple is dedicated to Goddess Kali. Intricately carved stone gate of the temple is an excellent example of the architecture of the era. Those who have visited this place say it’s like a haven of peace in the chaotic heart.
The Chowk area is an old area of Varanasi which is a perfect shopping place for everything. Chowk area of the city is the best place to know the culture and traditions of this sacred city as it is one of the old areas of Varanasi. Varanasi Heritage tour walk is incomplete without visiting the area. Here one can do the shopping for everything; from groceries, utensils, spices, to fabrics, handicrafts, and handlooms to books. This is the hub for those looking for bulk shopping.
Flower market or Phool mandi is located in the Chowk area. Known as the city of rituals and temples, it consumes a large number of flowers every day. In phool mandi, various kinds of flowers and floral arrangements can be seen. Every morning, small farmers reach to the small market called Phool mandi and open their small basket filled with flowers for sale. One can smell the fragrance of flowers from far away.
The birthplace of Bhartendu Harishchandra, this Anglo Indian architecture is century old and another spot in Varanasi Heritage tour walk. It is located at just 300 m from Kashi Vishwanath Temple. Bhartendu Harishchandra was a powerful Hindu fundamentalist and is one of the great writers of the 19th century.
Built by Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb in the 17th century, the Alamgir Mosque was a figure of the Mughal power in the province. The land where Alamgir Mosque is built once had Shiva temple, known as Bindu Madhava Temple which was destroyed by Aurangzeb. Alamgir mosque is also known as Beni Madhav-ka-Darera as it is believed to be built on the site of Bindu Madhava Temple constructed by Maratha chieftain Beni Madhav Rao Scindia in the 17th century. The mosque is another great illustration of Mughal architecture built according to Indo-Islamic architecture style with giant domes and attractive minarets. The mosque is named after Aurangzeb. He entitled himself as Alamgir when he became emperor. This tourist attraction in Varanasi is also a prime location for Muslims in Varanasi.
It is the place where five important rivers of Sanatan Dharma, Saraswati, Dhupapapa, Yamuna, Kirana, and Ganga converge here to become one. Out of all the rivers, Ganga remains visible where the other four rivers are believed to be disappeared in the earth. Located a few kilometers away from Manikarnika Ghat, it is one of the timeless ghats of Varanasi. Being amongst the cleanest ghats of Varanasi, Panchganga Ghat is a must-visit place in the North Varanasi heritage walk tour. Apart from this, the ghat also holds a special place in history. It was also served as a teaching place for the Guru of Saint Kabir, Vaidant Ramanand. It is also believed that the famous poet Saint Tulsidas composed his famous Vinay-Patrika here.
One of the holiest ghats among the holy riverfront of river Ganga, Manikarnika is must visit the place is a Kashi day trip. This ghat is famous as the burning ghat as it is a place where bodies are cremated for the salvation of the dead.
After exploring the ghats and famous places of North Varanasi heritage tour, take a break at the world-famous lassi shop- Blue Lassi before ending your heritage tour. One can find various types of flavors in Lassi and chilled beverages to quench your thirst.
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