When landed on Varanasi airport, me and my two friends felt somewhat weird; it felt as if we werenin India. Probably it was because the airport was relatively new that it was clean and ordered —a view uncommonly seen around India.
We were welcomed by a guide who cheerfully put garland around our necks. Speaking English in distinct Indian accent, the guide told us many things about Varanasi —from its history to its present existence.
Varanasi —probably similar to the Mecca for the Moslems or Vatican for the Catholics —is an important town; it is a sacred town for the Hindhus all around the globe. The town has also been the diamond of River Gangga; one that shines the brightest along the river.
I have always been dreaming of visiting Varanasi since the first time I traveled to India two years ago. Reading about Varanasi in a travel book, I have been curious about the town. The pictures displayed in the book were all unique and fascinating; I didnneed to think twice to choose Varanasi as the destination during my second visit to India.
The Ritual of Arti Gangga
Since early, we had informed our guide that we were not tourists and that our goal of visiting Varanasi was to hunt for pictures, which implied that there was no need to take us to shopping centers or souvenir shops. The guide understood well and had arranged a three-day shooting schedule for us.
On the first day, we tripped along the bank of River Gangga while waiting for the ritual of Arti Gangga, which is held every evening. After sunset, we headed to the altar and, lucky us, got a quite good spot to shoot the procession.
Nine brahmins in line and led the Asthi Visarjan procession —a ritual of puja (adoration) offered to Bathari Gangga, the wife of Sentanu and mother of Devabharata or Bhisma. The puja is offered to wish peace for Bathari Gangga after moksha (being freed from the cycle of samsara/ suffering in life and reached a final eternity of the soul).
Finished with the ritual, we went through the jamming traffic and headed back to the motel. The noisy sound of car horns, added by the shouting of riksaw drivers seemed to tell everybody, is Varanasi.”The town has been a powerful magnet attracting pilgrims since the past to the present time, as well as having been the witness to the growth of dinasties ruling over India.
PeopleActivity & Stair Pattern
The following day, we headed back to River Gangga to capture the sunrise as well as the sacred atmosphere of Gangga River in the morning. The river has always been flooded by numerous activities started as the sun rose; the riverbank was crowded by a large number of people with their own activities. Some practiced yoga, some bathed or washed in the river, some others gave offerings and puja, and so on.
We also bought flowers and candles for 10 rupees as offerings to let go on the sacred river. Once the candles were lit up and washed out on the river, it took only a while for them to spread and scatter on the water surface —a view we were exactly about to hunt for.
Renting a boat for 80 rupees, we sailed along the river to capture the sun as it rose at the East. The falling morning mist made it even perfect; the sun appeared as a perfect reddish circle. Beautiful yet mystical!
From the boat, River Gangga offered a view with special attraction. Tens, if not even thousands, ghat (stairs in various colors and designs) gave our right brain endless ideas in capturing them. Combined with the people and their activities, the existing pattern seemed to offer a paradise for those loving pattern photography.
The history of Varanasi —situated at Uttar Pradesh state, Northern India —told that the town was actually two historical cities merged into one. The two cities were Benares (also known as Banaras or Benaras) and Kashi or Kasi.
Flower Market & Moslem Village
Varanasi”became our next destination during the noon. Each of its alleys offered different atmosphere. Every time we turned into another alley, we found new atmosphere —all were highly interesting. Sometimes we met sadhus (Hindhu monks), some pilgrims, or children happily playing around.
While wandering along the alleys, we found an old mosque built during the golden age of Sultan Islam. Sadly, the mosque was left unattended.
Past noon, we took a while to hunt for photos around the flower market.
We were lucky enough to get a guide with good understanding on what photographers might want to capture; our guide took us to climb to the marketrooftops to allow us take pictures from different angles.
Before leaving Varanasi and heading to New Delhi, we took time to gave a visit to a Moslem village and another small village where our guide lived at. We also visited a traditional brick-making factory.
If I may suggest, all you traveling and adventure lovers should never dismiss Varanasi out of your itinerary while visiting India. Sukriya!
If the help of case study help is necessary to you, visit a site write-right.net and receive more detailed information.