A trip on the Ganges

5 February 2005

Varanasi

6.30 am found us in a boat on the Ganges in time for the sun rise over the river. It was an awesome sight and nothing we had been told about it would prepare us for its splendour.

Sunrise on the Ganges

Whilst out in the boat we also had a glimpse of the role that Mother Ganga plays in the lives of the people in Varanasi. We saw many people bathing in the river, meditating and participating in early morning prayer as well as washing their clothes. We leave the pictures to speak for themselves.

The Indian Laundrette

Floating market on the Ganges

We left the row boat by the oldest part of the city, reputably the oldest living city in the world, and climbing up from the riverbank through unbelievably narrow alleyways, arrived at a Hindu temple with a gold dome.

Indian woman selling flowers

A hearty breakfast (and a spicy one) was waiting for us back at the hotel as was the coach to take us to Sarnath, 10 km outside of Varanasi. Sarnath is the place where Buddha gave his first sermon after his Enlightenment to his original five disciples, expounding the principles of Buddhism. It was the same disciples who had made their way to Sarnath, which was a cultural centre, after they had become disillusioned with Buddha when he was sitting under the Bhodi tree seeking Enlightenment. After his Enlightenment Buddha went in search of these men and preached to them about the Circle Of Life. He then sent them out to spread his teachings. Sarnath is the cradle of Buddhism and a major Buddhist pilgrimage centre.

Buddhist Temple

Comments:

Jan Ridley

@ 4612 days ago

More superb pictures! Many thanks. Hope you all enjoy your train ride tomorrow.
Lots of love, Jan Ridley

June

@ 4612 days ago

Cool pics, wish I was there.

@ 4612 days ago

It's great to see what new things you're experiencing everyday and can't wait to hear about the train journey, hope no plastic pants will be needed!!!! Have fun! Love mum, Anna & Paul xxxxxxxxxxxxx

Dodds family

@ 4612 days ago

Lovely pictures. Wonderful colours. Its giving us a good idea of what you are seeing & what we are missing!

Steve

@ 4612 days ago

Well I'm home from uni for the weekend to ease the loss of both sons for my mum. I've read your reports and seen the Nataliefied princess Diana picture. I am very jealous that I can't be experiencing all of this with you, wretched medical education. I am looking forward to more updates on the website and seeing everyone when we're all back in jolly Rickmansworth. Steve

Debs

@ 4610 days ago

All these pics are great. It looks wonderful. I imagine the sights, sounds, smells and sensations of it all are 100 times better at first-hand. What an experience!! We'll keep watching, much love, the Belgian Tate-Smiths.

helen Aldous

@ 4607 days ago

hello all. we are all here in registration so though we would check out what you have been up to. it sounds like your having a great time and the pictures are fantastic. just thought we'd say good luck for the rest of your trip and look forward to hearing all about it when u arrive home safe and sound.
all the best from 13 theresa

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