3-Day Varanasi Itinerary

Day 1:

Morning Rituals at Ganges

05:00 AM – 10:00 AM

When in Banaras, you start your trip with the Subah-e-Banaras at Assi Ghat.

Subah-e-Banaras is a daily ritual performed on the bank of Ganga at the break of the day. The ritual takes 2 hours to complete and is carried out like an event. Tourists try hard to be here on time. The ritual begins at 05:00 AM in summers and 05:40 AM in winters. Photographers get here early and reserve their spots to get the best shot.

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Time duration: 1.5 – 2 hours.

Mode of Transport: Auto/rickshaws will drop you at Assi Ghat from your hotel.

After watching the enchanting sunrise, head towards Dashashwamedh Ghat.

Dashashwamedh Ghat is the most prominent ghat along the Ganga and also the busiest. This ghat is an ideal spot for Ganga Snan (taking a plunge into the sacred river). You will find tourists and localities gathered at this ghat eagerly waiting to offer their prayers and seek divine benedictions.

Boats and ferries are available here. Your Varanasi trip will be incomplete with taking a ferry ride on Ganga. You get to see the variety of activities that take place on the banks of the river, famous sacred sites at each of the ghats, and the skyline of the city.

Time duration: 2 – 3 hours.

Mode of Transport: Auto/rickshaws from Assi Ghat.

For break-fast, Kachori Gali is the place to be. This place is known for serving some delicious and mouth-watering local delicacies. Just 1 km from Dashashwamedh Ghat, you get plenty of options to gorge on Varanasi kachoris and jalebis.

The area is also known as Thatheri Bazaar, a paradise for shopping.

Offer your prayers

11:00 AM – 07:00 PM

After quenching your hunger, your next stop will be at the Shri Kashi Vishwanath and Maa Annapurna Temple.

Shri Kashi Vishwanath Temple and Annapurna Temple are adjacent to each other. Varanasi was developed around these temples and hence these temples are highly regarded and respected. Photography is not allowed inside the temple premises.

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Explore the area on foot and take a walk through the narrow lanes to feel the vibes of being in the oldest city.

Time duration: 45 min – 1 hour.

Mode of Transport: 5-min walk from Kachori Gali.

Manikarnika Ghat is 500 meters from Shri Kashi Vishwanath Temple.

Manikarnika Ghat is not really a tourist attraction. This is a cremation spot where the last rites of the mortal remains of human beings are carried out. The cremation process happens 24 hours. The energy and ambiance at this particular ghat are in complete contrast to the other ghats. You feel like going to a different realm altogether and getting a different perspective about life and death. You are bound to get philosophical here. (You can skip this if the sight of a funeral pyre makes you uncomfortable).

Time duration: 45 min – 1 hour.

Mode of Transport: 10-min walk from Shri Kashi Vishwanath Temple.

Your day ends with the Ganga Aarti at Dashashwamedh Ghat.

The Ganga Aarti begins at 06:00 PM and goes on for almost an hour. To get the best view, you need to reach Dashashwamedh Ghat early. We recommend be here by 05:00 PM and reserve your spot.

With the Ganga Aarti, sightseeing for the day comes to an end.

Also read: Best Area To Book your Hotel in Varanasi

Day 2:

Get to know the Heritage

10:00 AM – 02:00 PM

After experiencing the spiritual vibe, today you explore some of the historical landmarks of Varanasi starting with Ramnagar Fort.

The fort stands on the eastern bank of Ganga. This has been converted into a museum where you get to enjoy an exquisite collection of scriptures, royal customs, vintage cars and many more.

Time duration: 45 min – 1 hour.

Mode of Transport: Auto ride will be ideal.

Later, head towards Banaras Hindu University (BHU) Campus 3-km from the fort.

Inside the BHU campus is Bharat Kala Bhavan, a more than 100 years old museum dedicated to art and archaeology. The museum houses more than 100,000 artifacts dating from the 1st century to the 18th century. It has 2 floors and takes a while to cover them.

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Time duration: 1.5 – 2 hours

Mode of Transport: Auto ride from Ramnagar Fort.

At a distance of 1 km from the BHU Gate, you will find the famous Pahalwan Lassi. Your Varanasi trip will be incomplete without trying a kullad lassi here.

In the News: The Hindu

Explore the Streets of Kashi

03:00 PM – 07:00 PM

After relishing kullad lassi, Shri Tulsi Manas Temple will be your next stop.

The temple has been constructed on the spot where Tulsidas penned Ramacharitamanas. The walls of the temple is adorned with verses and pictures of Ramacharitamanas. The temple is well maintained and surrounded by vibrant gardens.

Time duration: 45 min – 1 hour.

Mode of Transport: 15-min walk from Pahalwan Lassi / 5-min rickshaw or auto

Later, head towards Bharat Mata Mandir, 6-km from Tulsi Manas Temple.

A temple that has no idols of god and goddess but a 3-D map of undivided India carved on the marble floor.  The maps is created in such a way that it shows the actual topography. It was inaugurated in 1936 by Mahatma Gandhi.

In the News: India Today

Time duration: 30 – 45 minutes.

Mode of Transport: Auto ride.

2 km from Bharat Mata Mandir is the popular Kashi Chat Bhandar. This is the place that serves a variety of chats. A perfect place for evening snacks.

Explore the area on foot or crash at your hotel.

Day 3:

Foundation of Buddhism

10:00 AM – 02:00 PM

Sarnath is 10 km from the city and has immense significance in the history of Buddhism.

There are multiple attractions that are worth paying a visit to – Dhamek Stupa, Chaukhndi Stupa, Japanese Temple, Chinese Temple, Deer Park, and more. Sarnath is said to be the place where Gautam Buddha taught about Dharma and set the Dharmachakra in motion. 

There are drive-thrus, take-away joints, and restaurants for you to have your meal.

You can plan your trip post-lunch. The timings are from 06:00 AM to 07:00 PM.

Time duration: 3 – 4 hours

Mode of Transport: Book a cab for a round trip.

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