India River Cruise: The Holy Ganges

Resort: India River Cruise: The Holy Ganges
Operator: G Adventures
Destination: India
Price From: Contact for latest offers

Over View

Cruise the storied waters of the Ganges River on a 12-day adventure. By riverboat and on land, soak up the immense power of this vital waterway as you sail to picturesque local villages and see stunning temples and palaces. Cap off the experience with a four-day land excursion to the city of Varanasi, considered by many to be the spiritual capital of India.

Itineraries

Day 1
Kolkata

Arrive at any time and transfer to your hotel. Arrival transfer included.

Day 2
KolkataFarakka

Catch a train from Kolkata to Farakka and embark on the riverboat this afternoon.

Day 3
FarakkaManihri Ght

Sail upstream to Rajmahal, a village with a fantastic local atmosphere. Explore the remains of palaces, forts, and mosques submerged in vegetation before sailing on as far as Manihari Ghat.

Day 4
Manihri GhtKahalgaon

Cruise upriver to idyllic Bateshwar and visit 6th century rock carvings. Afterwards, drive a short distance to the impressive ruins of a Buddhist monastery at Vikramshila.

Day 5
KahalgaonSultnganj

Keep an eye out for South Asian river dolphins this morning as you sail to Bhagalpur, a centre of silk production. Visit a mansion and silk-weaving village. Continue on to Jehangira Island and enjoy an excursion to view ancient Hindu rock carvings.

Day 6
SultnganjSita Kund

Sail to Munger and take a rickshaw ride through the town to view the remnants of a Mughal fort and an East India Company cemetery. Visit the local bazaar, Pirpahar Hill, and Sitakund hot springs. Walk through the village and fields before getting back on board.

Day 7
Sita KundBrh

This morning pass under the great bridge at Mokama, where the naturalist Jim Corbett spent his working life overseeing the ferry crossing. Stop to visit a bankside village and stretch your legs. Cruise on to Barh and moor for the evening.

Day 8
BrhPatna

Enjoy a full day excursion to Nalanda. Visit an excavated Buddhist monastery and stupa, and the picturesque Jain temple at Pawapuri. Continue to Patna and reboard the boat for the night.

Day 9
PatnaBodh Gaya

Disembark and discover Patna on a morning tour visiting the Golghar granary, the great Sikh temple, and the State Museum. Afterwards, transfer to the small town of Bodh Gaya to explore the Mahabodhi Temple Complex, a UNESCO World Heritage site. Meet with a monk to discuss the history of the area and visit the spot where the Buddha found enlightenment.

Day 10
Bodh GayaVaranasi

Drive to Varanasi, the quintessential Indian holy city. This afternoon, enjoy a lecture at the Ghats of the Ganges by a Research Scholar from Benaras Hindu University, and talk about the river’s significance spiritually, socially, economically and politically. After, embark on a boat trip on the sacred Ganges at sunset. Enjoy a candle and flower ceremony accompanied by sitar and tabla playing, and observe an evening aarti (prayer) ceremony.

Day 11
Varanasi

Rise early for a sunrise boat ride along the Ganges to observe the dawn rituals of bathing and burial. After, have breakfast at Open Hand, a vocational training cafe and one of G Adventures’ grassroots partners. Learn about this social enterprise whose mission is to provide dignified and meaningful job opportunities to underprivileged people in India. This afternoon take an excursion to Sarnath, a pilgrimage site where it is said the Buddha preached his first sermon.

Day 12
Varanasi

Depart at any time.

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holidays@aspentravel.co.uk