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Varanasi

Private tours

Our most recommended Varanasi Private Experiences

Varanasi Full-Day Private Tour with Sarnath and Ganga Aarti

1. Varanasi Full-Day Private Tour with Sarnath and Ganga Aarti

After breakfast, you'll be picked up from your hotel and driven to Sarnath, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It is hailed as one of the holiest Buddhist places in India and the place where Gautama Buddha, after attaining spiritual enlightenment, delivered his first sermons and claimed the place as an important pilgrimage site for his followers. Here, you'll first visit Chaukhandi Stupa, which is an elevated structure surrounded by octagonal towers. It's the gateway to Sarnath and adorned by lush green lawns from all sides. Then, you'll see Dhamek Stupa, a remarkable structure built of stone and brick. This cylindrical pillar is engraved with delicate floral carvings of Gupta origin. After this you'll visit Mulagandha Kuti Vihar, a modern temple encasing unrivalled frescoes by a Japanese painter and a rich repository of Buddhist literature. Later you will be taken to visit the Sarnath Museum. This is an expansive museum that houses the finest specimens of Buddhist art and culture.  Afterwards, you can enjoy lunch at a local restaurant before visiting some famous temples and many other marvellous holy structures. In the evening, you will get to witness the ritualistic rites held every night on the banks of the Ganges, before being taken back to your hotel.

Private Full-Day Varanasi Tour & Monkey Temple

2. Private Full-Day Varanasi Tour & Monkey Temple

Start your full-day of exploration with a convenient pick-up at your accommodation. You will meet your driver/guide at 11:00 AM in the lobby of your hotel and set off on your adventure to find out why the city holds such religious importance in the Hindu mythology.  Your tour will start with a visit to Kashi Vishwanath Temple - a temple dedicated to Lord Shiva. Witness the beauty of a temple that is considered to be one of the twelve Jyotirlingas (the holiest Shiva temples) in India. Here, in the Hindu belief system, visiting the temple and dipping yourself in the waters of the holy Ganga River is considered to be the way of achieving Moksha (liberation). Continue on your tour to visit the famous Monkey Temple, also called Durga Temple. Marvel at the temple's beautiful carvings, inlaid stones and the holy water pond called 'Kund'. Follow your temple trip with a visit to 'Tulsi Manas Mandir', where Hindu scripture Ramayana was originally translated by Tulsidas from the Sanskrit language to Awadhi dialect in 16th-century. Admire the temple walls that display scenes and pictorials from the Ramayana in the form of paintings. You will also get the chance to see Bharat Mata Temple, also called Mother India temple. Here you can see the undivided relief map of India carved out of marble.  Add to the list of beautiful temples visited with a trip to Birla Temple, also known as Marble Temple, another famous architectural structure dedicated to Lord Shiva. After a fascinating full day tour of Varanasi city, the tour will complete and you will be safely dropped back at the hotel.

Delhi: 6-Day Golden Triangle & Varanasi Private Tour

3. Delhi: 6-Day Golden Triangle & Varanasi Private Tour

Begin the first day of your trip with a pickup from your hotel or other desired place in Delhi, Noida or Gurugram. Start with a half-day city tour of Delhi. Visit Qutub Minar, Lotus Temple, and India Gate. Drive by Parliament House and the President's Palace. After that, proceed to Agra via a 4-hour drive. Upon arrival in Agra, check in to your hotel.  On day 2, you will get up before sunrise, and head to the Taj Mahal to watch the sun come up over this world-famous monument. You will spend two hours exploring the site. After that, return to your hotel for breakfast and to check out, and then spend an hour visiting the Agra Fort. You will then start the 5-hour drive to Jaipur. After breakfast the following day, you will enjoy a guided tour of the Amber Fort. Next, visit the Jal Mahal, a palace located in the middle of the Man Sagar Lake, followed by the Maharaja’s City Palace. Drive past the beautiful Hawa Mahal, a large structure built so the women of the royal household could observe the streets outside whilst remaining hidden.  After breakfast on day 4, you will be transferred to Jaipur airport for your domestic flight to Varanasi. Upon arrival at Varanasi airport, you will be picked up and transferred to your hotel to check in. The rest of the day is free at your leisure.  In the morning of day 5, you will be driven to Assi Ghat, where you will watch the Hindu fire ceremony rituals performed by women priests. Next, enjoy a sunrise boat tour on the River Ganges to see the Ghats of this ancient city. After breakfast, enjoy a city tour of Varanasi which includes the Banaras Hindu University and its temple, a traditional school where children are learning an ancient version of Sanskrit, and a historical wrestling ground.  On day 6, if you have not chosen the option with a return flight to Delhi, you will be transferred to a location of your choice in Varanasi. If you have chosen the option with the flight, upon arrival at Delhi airport, you’ll be dropped off at a location of your choice in Delhi, Noida or Gurugram.

Varanasi: Private Akhada Wrestling Tour

4. Varanasi: Private Akhada Wrestling Tour

After being collected in the morning at approximately 6:00AM, your chauffeur will pick you up from your hotel and escort you to the Ghat to visit the Akhada, where you will be able to watch the traditional Indian style of wrestling called Kushti. Visiting an Akhada is one of the more interesting things to do in Varanasi, and you can say Akhada is an original gym of India, where youngsters go to build their bodies. Wearing a special garment called a Langot, the Akhada have their own equipment such as Gada, Naal, Jodi, Santulan which are all made up of heavy wood. For Indians ,Akhada is not only a place for wrestling, but they treat it like a temple. Before starting Kushti, they prepare the mud on the ground by tilting the soil with a spade and their hands. Then, they sprinkle water on the soil and offer flowers. Following this, the wrestlers offer prayer in the temple located within the Akhada. Later on, they oil their body and start warming up, before slowly they start their wrestling in pairs in a well-dignified manner. During your tour you will also get the chance to interact with the wrestlers and take some pictures of Akhada. After this unique wrestling experience, you will be returned to your accommodation at around 8:00PM/8:30PM.

Walking Tour of Varanasi

5. Walking Tour of Varanasi

Take a three hour private walking tour of the back streets of Varanasi. The tour begins with a pickup from your hotel lobby at 10:00 AM, at which time you will be driven to the heart of the city, in a residential area where your walking tour will start with a guide. Wander through the oldest markets and charming alleys of Varanasi. The city is sectioned into several areas which are distinguished according to their speciality. See the typical way of living of the locals in the narrow lanes, so small, there is barely space to walk! You will see the tiny apartments stacked one over the other, spilling over with life into the streets. Switch to another area lined with numerous dharamshalas, or public dormitories, offering lodging at low prices to the city visitors. The heavy influx of tourists and devotees owes to the large number of dharamshalas as an inexpensive option to spend your days in Varanasi. Try the famous banarasi paan (a mouth freshener prepared with betel leaves) from one of the kiosk in the market. Enjoy the walk as you witness the untouched charm of the city. After the walking tour you will be dropped safely back at your hotel with chauffeur service.

Varanasi: Morning Yoga on the Bank of the Ganga River

6. Varanasi: Morning Yoga on the Bank of the Ganga River

Early in the morning at around 5:30AM, your chauffeur will pick you up from your hotel before transporting you to the Tulsi Ghat for your 90-minute yoga class given by renowned yoga instructor Smriti Chakravarti. Miss Smriti is a founder of the Om International Yoga Health Society and has visited and practiced in many countries such as Belgium, Holland and Italy. There has even been a Spanish documentary surrounding her titled "Energy". This Yoga class is taken in the Courtyard of the Shiv Temple situated in Tulsi Ghat, where according to mythology Tulsi Das Ji resides. The Yoga class will begin with the worship of Lord Shiva and chanting the Mahamritiunjay Mantra. After that, you will be instructed to warm up your body by doing basic exercises. Following this, you will start with Surya Namaskar (salute to the sun), a blend of 12 asans which are from the Vedic age and are useful to keep your body vigorous, active and healthy. After the repetition of the Surya Namaskar 7-8 times, you will be instructed to some other asans such as backward bending, spinal twisting, forward bending, inversion, and balancing asana followed by pranayama, bandha, and mudra. Miss Smriti also gives a 10-15 minutes lesson on yoga and its benefits to your health. After this yoga class tour, your chauffeur will drop you back to your hotel between 7:30AM–8:00 AM.

Varanasi: Morning Aarti with Boat Ride & Rooftop Breakfast

7. Varanasi: Morning Aarti with Boat Ride & Rooftop Breakfast

Start your day bright and early with a convenient pick-up service from your accommodation in Varanasi at 5:30AM. After a short meet and greet with your driver you will set off on your adventure. Hop aboard your private, air-conditioned vehicle and proceed to Assi Ghat. Upon your arrival in Assi Ghat, you will get the unique opportunity to witness the morning ritual of Aarti. Take part in one of India's most sacred ceremonies as you witness saints, conducting the ceremony whilst holding soil lamps and chanting mantras.  After a spiritual morning, you will proceed for a boat ride starting from Assi Ghat and heading toward Manikarnika Ghat. While you sail on the boat, witness devotees performing morning prayer to the rising sun. During your boat tour, you will also be able to visit Manikarnika Ghat, the Hindu cremation ground.  Continue on your tour and walk through the lanes of Varanasi and witness the culture and traditional heritage. After a day of excitement and adventure, you will be able to finish your tour with a morning breakfast at Dolphin Restaurant for some delicious local cuisine. Return back to your hotel in your private car after your delicious meal. 

Morning Aarti and Private Varanasi City Tour

8. Morning Aarti and Private Varanasi City Tour

Begin your tour bright and early at 5:00 AM. You will be picked up from the lobby of your hotel to proceed towards Assi Ghat where the Morning Aarti (Subh e Banaras) takes place. The vibrant sound of the mantras, recited by the pundits during Aarti, will leave you spellbound. After that, proceed back to the hotel for morning breakfast. Later, leave for a city tour of Varanasi. During this part of the tour you will visit Banaras Hindu University, Asia's largest residential university, Birla Temple (Vishwanath Temple), the Bharat Kala Bhawan museum, Monkey Temple, Durga Temple and Bharat Mata Temple.  Hotel drop-off at the end of the tour.

Varanasi: Maharaja Boat Ride and Dinner

9. Varanasi: Maharaja Boat Ride and Dinner

At around 5:00PM, your chauffeur will pick you up from your hotel and drive you to the Dashashwamedh Ghat, for a Maharaja boat ride with music and Ganga Aarti. Once you have reached the ghat, you will board the Maharaja boat, welcomed by a seller who is dressed up in a uniform complete with a garland and bouquet. The royal boat will be decorated with flowers, furnished with carpet, and you will be served some snacks and drinks like tea, coffee, cashew nuts, cookies and chocolates. Once you go upstairs on the boat, you will see that the floor has been covered with white mattresses, one side of which renowned musicians will be sitting with a tabla and sitar. You can sit here on a chair or on the floor to enjoy the mesmerizing Indian classical music. After admiring the soothing Indian music and praising the art of the musicians, it will be time to watch the magical Ganga Aarti. You will be able to easily catch a glance of this one hour Ganga Aarti from the boat. This awe-inspiring Aarti will start a chant of mantra followed by harmonious hymns dedicated to Lord Shiva, Mata Ganga (Ganga River), Surya (the sun), and Agni (lord of fire). The prayer will be given by a group of priests dressed up in similar clothes (dhoti and kurta), who will be holding a multi-tiered heavy brass lamp and a conch shell. This Aarti is splendid, with the ghats being overcrowded with people to witness this glorious Aarti. Every evening it seems to be the occasion at Dashashwamedh Ghat. After sightseeing this lavish Ganga Aarti, you will be taken to one of the famous restaurants in Varanasi for a tempting dinner, after which you will be dropped back at your hotel.

Varanasi: Private Lecture on Hinduism with Professor

10. Varanasi: Private Lecture on Hinduism with Professor

Learn more about the history and culture of India with a 1 or a 2-hour lecture on iconography (an area of study of art history), Hinduism, and spirituality. This private lecture will be given by an experienced professor from the Banaras Hindu University (BHU) in Varanasi. The discussion can be held at a cafe, in your hotel lounge, or at any other location which is most convenient for you. The lecture will be given by either Dr Maruti Nandan Tiwari, Dr Rana Singh, or Dr Kamal Giri. During the lecture, you can ask any questions related to the topic, or about the culture and religion of Varanasi. After the lecture you, will be dropped back at your hotel. 

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What people are saying about Varanasi

Overall rating

4.0 / 5

based on 4 reviews

We had a great tour, everything was nicely planned. Our guides provided us with interesting insights and the drivers were also very helpful and reliable. Would definitely recommend this tour!

We were picked up on time in the morning, had his great guide and driver. would book excursions again at any time with get your guide. Lunch and continuing into the evening were simply great.