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Varanasi & Kathmandu Tours  
VARANASI:-
“Varanasi “cannot be described, only experienced. Sunrise on the riverfront, as seen from a boat, can be a spiritually uplifting sight. Crowded with temples and its labyrinth of streets, the city attracts the maximum number of tourists- domestic and international. Though Varanasi retains its heritage, the city is moving. New markets, commercial complexes and modern hotels make it a melting pot of both. The religious capital of Hinduism, Varanasi’s the oldest living city in India, and one of the world’s most ancient. It was previously known as Kashi – the city that illuminates. The present name is derived from the fact that the city is at the confluence of the rivers Varuna and Asi. At a distance of 12 kms from Varanasi is Sarnath where Lord Buddha preached his first sermon after Enlightenment. Here he revealed the eight-fold path.

KATHMANDU
“Katmandu” is the capital of Nepal and the Kathmandu Valley is the political and cultural heart of the Kingdom. Founded in the 8th century AD by King Gunakamadeva at the join of the Bagmati and Bishnumati rivers the founding point is the Kashta (wood) Mandap (temple), built where two old trade routes crossed, and now the oldest building in the city. The europhile first minister of Katmandu in the 19th century, Jung Bahadur Rana, built many classical looking buildings and palaces in the city, in contrast to those of Newari style that existed before. The urban sprawl that makes up modern Katmandu is in fact two cities, Pathan and Katmandu.
 
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Itinerary Details
DAY 01: ARRIVE AT VARANASI
Arrive at Varanasi airport. On arrival meet & greet to our representative and transfer to hotel. Post lunch, half day sight seeing tour of Sarnath which is 10 Kms. from Varanasi. Overnight at hotel.

“The Buddha “preached his first sermon to five disciples at the Deer Park here, ensharing the principals of his teaching into laws. The Dhamek Stupa marks the location of a once resplendent monastery. A large complex of ruined monasteries cover the area north of the Stupas. Some of the buildings belong to the Kushan and Gupta period. The first monk communities probably settled here in the 3rd century BC. Near the Dhamek Stupa is a new monastery built by the Buddhist Mahabodhi Society. The major events of Buddha’s life are depicted here in wall paintings by a Japanese artist. Sarnath has an interesting archaeological museum which has preserved the famous Sarnath pillar whose capital forms India’s national emblem. Visit the Dhamekh Stupa and Mulgandkuti Vihar.

DAY 02: FULL DAY CITY TOUR OF VARANASI
A.M. - Early morning, we go for a boat Ride on the Holy River Ganges - (2 1/2 Hrs.) Over three miles in length, steps lead down from a steep bank to the sacred river. The time to see the ghats is early dawn when out of the morning mist, forms descend the steps, their numbers, increasing by the minute until a solemn silent multitude, lit by the sun’s first rays, moves in the same direction to immerse itself in the holy stream and to salute the sun. These rituals remind one of the nature worship prevalent in India during the Aryan age, 3,000 years ago. The ghats extend to almost four miles of river bank. During this particular sightseeing no monuments are visited. See the Bathing Ghats, Cremation Ghats, The Gyanvapi Mosque built in the 17th century when the fanatical Emperor Aurangazeb pulled down the original Vishwanath Golden Temple and on its site raised a mosque. After the boat ride visit the Golden Temple and walk through the narrow lanes of Varanasi. Return back to hotel for a late breakfast.

Get A Free Quote P.M. – Visit the Bharat Mata Temple, dedicated to Mother India, which, instead of gods and goddesses, houses a relief map of India carved out of marble. Emperor Aurangazeb’s Mosque built in the 17th century on the site of a Hindu Temple. The rear of the mosque reveals secimens of the ancient temple art of India. Vishwanath Temple (Golden Temple) erected by Rani Ahalyabai Holker of Indore in 1776. The Sikharas of the temple are gold plated. Foreign nationals can visit the Vishwanath Temple (Golden Temple) courtyard only. Visit Banarasi Hindu University (BHU), a great seat of oriental learning. It started as a center of education in Sanskrit, Indian Art, culture and music. Visit the Durga (Goddess of Power) Temples popularly known as the Monkey Temple because of hundreds of monkeys in the courtyard. In the evening “Yagya/ Fire worship”. Overnight at hotel.

DAY 03: VARANASI-KATHMANDU
After breakfast transfer to the airport for connecting flight for Katmandu. Reception on arrival at Katmandu airport with fresh flowers garland. Evening at Leisure. Overnight at hotel.

DAY 04: IN KATHMANDU
This morning you will enjoy a guided tour covering Kathmandu’s Durbar Square, which is one of three durbar (royal palace) squares in the Kathmandu Valley. It is the site of the Hanuman Dhoka Palace Complex, which was the royal Nepalese residence until the 19th century and where important ceremonies, such as the coronation of the Nepalese monarch, still take place today. You will then visit one of the most curious attractions in Nepal, the Kumari Chowk. This gilded cage contains the Raj Kumari, a young girl chosen through an ancient and mystical selection process to become the human incarnation of the Hindu mother goddess, Durga. She is worshipped during religious festivals and makes public appearances at other times for a fee paid to her guards. You will next continue to visit Swayambhunath the golden spire of the 5th-century Swayambhu stupa is adorned with a colorful fluttering of prayer flags; it crowns a hill overlooking the Kathmandu Valley and offers fantastic views over the city of Kathmandu. Swayambhunath is one of the most recognizable symbols in Nepal and the painted eyes of Buddha watch all who ascend the worn stone steps.

This afternoon your guided tour will take you for a visit of the Hindu culture in Nepal, Pashupatinath. This is the place where holy saddhus pray and cremations on the Bagmati River are carried out. While you are not allowed into the temple if you are not a Hindu, the grounds surrounding the temple usually have a fascinating crowd of the faithful. We then continue to the holiest shrine for the Buddhist culture in Nepal, Bouddhanath, with its large stupa, this is the place where all devout Buddhists come for a pilgrimage. It is not unusual to see very old devotees circumnavigate the shrine hundreds of times falling to their knees and rising again for a few steps only to go back down again to their knees. Overnight at hotel.

DAY 05: IN KATHMANDU
This morning proceed to visit Bhadgoan, also known as Bhaktapur. The Durbar Square is a conglomeration of pagoda and shikhara style temples grouped around a fifty-five window palace of brick and wood. The square is one of the most charming architectural showpieces of the Valley as it highlights the ancient arts of Nepal. The golden effigies of kings perched on the top of stone monoliths, the guardian deities looking out from their sanctuaries, the wood carvings in every place-struts, lintels, uprights, tympanums, gateways and windows, all seem to form a well orchestrated symphony. You will visit the The Golden Gate – which is said to be the most beautiful and richly moulded specimen of its kind in the entire world. The door is surmounted by a figure of the goddess Kali and Garuda (the mythical man bird) and attended by two heavenly nymphs. It is placed like a jewel, flashing innumerable facets in the handsome setting of its surroundings. You will next visit the The Palace of Fifty five Windows - This magnificent palace was built during the reign of King Yakshya Malla in A.D. 1427 and was subsequently remodelled by King Bhupatindra Malla in the seventeenth century. Among the brick walls with their gracious setting and sculptural design, is a balcony with Fifty five Windows, considered to be a unique masterpiece of woodcarving.
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This afternoon your guided tour will take you for a visit to Patan. Also known as Lalitpur, the city of beauty is separated from Kathmandu only by the Bagmati River and is the second largest town in the valley. Lalitpur is fragmented from other cities due to its substantive architectural ancient masterpieces. Patan's central Durbar Square is absolutely packed with temples: Its an architectural center point with a far greater concentration of temples per sq. meter than in Kathamandu or Bhaktapur. Within the city also lies the Tibetan refugee center, home to most of the valley's Tibetan population. While technically refugees, the Tibetans are some of the wealthiest people in the valley because of the carpet industry they operate. For those looking to bring home a fine Tibetan carpet, this is the place to shop. Overnight at hotel.

DAY 06: DEPARTURE FROM KATHMANDU
Morning will be comparatively free and closer to the time of your flight; you will be transferred to the airport in time to board your flight for onward journey.
DESTINATION DLX. HOTELS F/C. HOTELS STANDARD
VARANASI HOTEL RADISSON/ HOTEL RAMADA HOTEL HINDUSTAN INTN’L/HOTEL PALACE ON GHATS HOTEL PALLAVI/ HOTEL PALACE ON STEPS/ HOTEL INDIA
KATHMANDU HOTEL YAK & YETI/ HOTEL RADISSON/ HOTEL SOALTEE CROWN PLAZA HOTEL HIMALAYA/ HOTEL ANNAPURNA / HOTEL EVEREST HOTEL GRAND / HOTEL SHANKAR

1. Accommodation on twin sharing basis in hotels.
2. Meals: Breakfast only.
3. All arrival/departure transfers & sightseeing using air-condition car as per the itinerary above.
4. Assistance on arrival/departure transfers.
5. Services of Local English speaking guide.
6. 2.575 % Govt.Service tax.
7. Boat Ride in Varanasi.
8. Rickshaw ride in Varanasi.
1. International airfare / Domestic airfare/ Train fare/Airport Tax.
2. Main meals (lunch + dinner) at hotels.
3. Any extra sightseeing not included in the program.
4. Monument Entrance fee for Varanasi & Kathmandu as per itinerary would be US$ 40 Extra.
5. Visa fee for Nepal @ US$ 25 per person would be extra which you can pay directly.
6. Personal expenses like bar bills, Telephone calls, Tips, beverages, Medical/travel insurance, Video camera fees.
7. Porterage & tips.
8. Ayurvedic treatment or any other service not mentioned under header” Includes”.
9. Visa fee for Nepal & India.
10. Any increase in Government applicable taxes.
1. Prices are quoted based on tentative itinerary given to you. This is not the final itinerary. Our booking process starts on receiving full payment in advance from you. We try our best to maintain the same itinerary given to you initially. However, it is possible that at the time of booking (and especially during the peak season) the hotel or the room category mentioned by us is full. In that case we will give you an alternate hotel or an alternate room (higher category or lower category). Change in costs, if any, will be intimated to you and balance payable by you or to you will be paid by you or refunded to you as the case may be.
2. Sometimes, we may also have to change the itinerary to accommodate the bookings or for other logistic/operational reasons.
3. Our bookings are subject to the condition that this clause is acceptable to you.
4. Visa is guaranteed at international airport in Kathmandu for which 2 passport size photographs are required.