We noticed you are browsing from

Request Your Free Brochure For Adventure Inspiration. Order Now

All activities
No results found
Select all activities Culture Cycling Family Mixed-Activity Multi-Country Holidays Polar Walking & Trekking Wildlife Holidays Winter Holidays
All months
June 2024 July 2024 August 2024 September 2024 October 2024 November 2024 December 2024 January 2025 February 2025 March 2025 April 2025 May 2025 June 2025 July 2025 August 2025 September 2025 October 2025 November 2025 December 2025
Ask a Question
Ganges
Life on The Ganges, Varanasi, India

Ganges

Ganges Holidays

Highlights of Northern India

Ganges
9 Days from £ 1249
£ 1199

Guided Group (Excl. Flights)

From the Taj Mahal to the Bengal tigers of Ranthambore, explore a land packed with culture and excitement

Culture
New

India’s Taj Mahal and Tigers – Premium Adventure

Premium Adventures

Ganges
10 Days from £ 2699

Guided Group (Excl. Flights)

Discover the grandeur of northern India, where a royal reception and majestic wildlife await your arrival

Culture
New

India's Golden Triangle

Ganges
7 Days from £ 645

Guided Group (Excl. Flights)

A gateway to India’s fascinating culture and spectacular Moghul architecture.

Culture
On Offer

Highlights of Northern India – Summer itinerary

Ganges
9 Days from £ 1195

Guided Group (Excl. Flights)

Discover India's Golden Triangle plus the incredible city of Varanasi

Culture
New

Highlights of Northern India & Nepal

Ganges
15 Days from £ 2249
£ 2049

Guided Group (Excl. Flights)

Take a classic journey from India's plains to the mountains of Nepal

Culture

Best Things to Do in Varanasi on River Ganges Holidays

Sunrise Boat Trip: Sailing out onto the River Ganges at dawn is a unique experience. As the morning sun casts a deep orange glow over the water and the morning mist rises, the ghats come alive with hundreds of pilgrims performing their religious rituals. As you watch people bathing, chanting, meditating and washing clothes, you begin to realise the importance of the Ganges. Cruise along the river and see of the most famous ghats such as Manikarnika, Dasaswamedh, Scindhia and Assi Ghat.

Shopping in Varanasi: The frenetic city of Varanasi, also known as Benares, runs along the banks of the River Ganges and is one of India’s most sacred cities in Hinduism. It’s believed that Varanasi was created by the Hindu God Shiva and it’s one of the oldest inhabited cities in the world. But throughout the streets of Varanasi, you’ll also find a rich cultural centre and vibrant markets selling silk, muslin, perfumes and art. Some of the best markets for shopping are Thatheri Bazaar, Vishwanath Lane and Godowlia Market.

Visit the Temples: As a renowned pilgrimage site Varanasi is one of the most religious cities in India so visiting the temples should be high on your list of things to do here. Around every corner you’ll see an ancient temple with beautiful architecture. The most famous of all the temples is Kashi Vishwanath which was built in the mid-18th century and sits inside two golden domes. Other impressive temples worth seeing include Annapurna Temple, Durga Temple, Ankatha Temple and Bharat Mata Temple.

Watch Pilgrims Bathing in the Ganges: Providing the people of Varanasi with its vital lifeblood, the Ganges River is considered sacred in the Hindu religion. The holy waters attract pilgrims from across the globe who come and bathe here as it’s believed that by bathing in the water, you’ll purify your soul and wash away your sins. People also come to the Ganges to immerse their relative’s ashes in the water and end the cycle of reincarnation by sending the deceased to Moksha.

Attend an Evening Arti Ceremony: The Arti Ceremony takes place at the Ganges River in Varanasi and is a religious ceremony of light which is best witnessed from the Dasawamedh Ghat. This iconic performance features fire which is used as an offering to the goddess Maa Ganga. Hindu priests light large brass lamps as rituals comprising dance and religious chants take place and it’s believed that the lamps will absorb the blessing of Maa Ganga. This is one of the most spectacular and soul stirring ceremonies you’ll witness along the Ganges at Varanasi.

Try the Local Food: Varanasi is a dizzying maze of narrow lanes filled with traditional restaurants, street food stalls and tea stalls. Indian cuisine is vibrant and extremely diverse, and you’ll be overwhelmed by the amount of choice there is here. Try varanasi Lassi, which is a sweet drink made with saffron, dried rose petals and pistachios and is a favourite with the locals in the city. But if you fancy something a little spicier to fill the hunger gap, try a choti kachori, a snack made with lentils and masala and wrapped inside a crispy outer layer.

Yes, the trip is fast paced, but I think that’s pretty well explained on the website so I was expecting it. But the itinerary covers some really incredible places and I felt like I got a good feeling for India (my first time) as a result of it. There were some long drives, but the days spent in places like Jaipur, Agra and Varanasi meant it didn’t feel like we were *constantly* on the move. I absolutely loved India! The group gelled really well and we’re considering going on a S. India trip with Exodus all together again in 2026!

Ben Colbridge Highlights of Northern India

The trip included all the sites we wanted to see, but it was done at such a pace that it was exhausting and difficult to take everything in.

Jo Rimell Highlights of Northern India

A busy but fun filled 8 days travelling around to see the best of northern India! A lot of travelling on the bus but that’s really the only way to get around, plus you see a lot of how people live, get around and the landscape.

Hannah Davidson Highlights of Northern India