Tour Erotic Temples and the World's Oldest City
No Northern India tour should miss Khajuraho, a UNESCO World Heritage site, where you will see exquisitely carved Hindu and Jain Temples, and Varanasi (through history also known as Kashi, Benares and Banares), India's oldest and hokiest city and probably the oldest continuously-inhabited city on Earth.
Day One: To Khajuraho from Delhi, Agra, or Mumbai
Journey to Khajuraho . If you are continuing from Agra, you will travel on an afternoon travel by train to Jhansi, and continue by road to Khajuraho. Otherwise, you may fly from Delhi, Mumbai, or elsewhere in India. Overnight in Khajuraho. You will tour Khajuraho's temples today if you arrive in the morning.
Day Two: Celestially Erotic
Khajuraho . Full Day visit of the Eastern and Western Group of Temples takes you to the resplendent Hindu temples of Khajuraho known for the delicate sensuality and forthright erotic sculpture. They were built between 10th and 12th centuries by the Chandela dynasty. Today, twenty-two of the eighty-five temples remain to recreate the celestial and terrestrial world of the Chandelas.
Our private tour to Khajuraho and Varanasi is the perfect add-on to our Gooden Triangoe trip, and explores ancient temples with erotic carvings and India's holiest city on the banks of the Ganges. Khajuraho is a UNESCO World Heritage temple complex known best for its erotic carvings. Varanasi is Hinduism's holiest city. Dying here insures an auspicious rebirth. Pilgrims bathe in the Ganges daily and crematory fires burn day and night along its banks. We take you by boat down the river to witness it all in the early morning.
Day Three: Onward to Varanasi
Khajuraho to Varanasi . Morning free, or you can add more temple time. Later you fly to Varanasi, the oldest living city in India. Built on the shores of the holy Ganges River, this city is a center of Indian religion, philosophy and spirituality. Mark Twain said after he visited Varanasi "Benaras is older than history, older than tradition, older even than legend and looks twice as old as all of them put together."
For the devout Hindu, Varanasi must be visited at least once in a lifetime to wash away sins. It's also the ideal place for Hindus to die. If you travel to Varanasi by road you will see the elderly and infirm being carried on pallets for miles before you reach the city. Although macabre for foreigners, the "Burning Ghats" along the river perform cremations 24-7.
You'll have some free time this afternoon for shopping. The most beautiful silk available in India can be found here. (No North Indian wedding takes place without the bride wearing a Varanasi Silk Sari!) Along the way you also stop for a tour of the temples of Varanasi.
Day Four: Dawn on the Ganges
Early this morning you take a boat ride past the "Bathing Ghats" on the sacred Ganges River. As the night mist lifts and the sun touches the spires of the bank side temples with gold, you can see thousands of Hindus performing their morning rites of prayer on the shores of the river. Return to hotel for breakfast. You will be delivered to the airport on time to connect your flight onward to Delhi or Mumbai.