Just Look at Ghat!

Ouch! Probably my worst title yet!

I can’t help it…I’ve not been well…

…well, only a cold, but you know what we men are like.

In another attempt to feel instantly better, I’ve nipped across to North India (only in my imagination, unfortunately), to picture Kedar Ghat, on the banks of the Ganges, in Varanasi.


Ghats, a Hindi word, are sets of steps leading down to a river (and also mountain ranges or passes – The eastern and Western Ghats in Central India). It has also come to mean a level place at the edge of a river where Hindus cremate their dead.

In Varanasi, there are between 84 and 87 ghats, depending upon who you get this information from,. The Manikarnika Ghat, or Ghats (possibly this is the origin of the confusion over the number) is the ‘burning ghat’, where cremations are carried out 24 hours a day, all through the year. The source fire there has supposedly been burning for thousands of years, but photography is actively discouraged, hence my only shot is one taken from a distance.


Of course, the ghats are also used for bathing. Hindus bathe en masse there, as a dip in the Ganges is meant to wash away sins. Important pujas (ceremonies) take place at sunrise and sunset. Boat trips to view the ghats are very popular, and finally much of the city’s laundry gets done at the dhobi ghats (dhobi meaning laundry).



22 thoughts on “Just Look at Ghat!

  1. Some day you should visit Pushkar town in Rajasthan. Another Hindu holy town. There are ghats around lake..handful, in contrast. The lake is quite clean and ghats are clean too. It is a favorite town among the long stay foreigners. You get plenty International food – Pizzas, pasta, wraps, hummus…. Mediterranean food. Go ahead google it…there’s nothing quite like Pushkar. I’m not sure if you have ever been there…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. No, I’ve never been there, Arv, although I’ve read a lot about it. It is certainly on my long, long bucket list of places to visit next time I’m in India. I’m not sure why I’d need international food, though, when India does Indian food so well!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Ha ha! In India, there’s always a twist to the International food, Mick! Where else in the world will you find Masala Pizza or Paneer Pizza? I’m sure that’s one element which makes International food much more authentic! Look at how Tandoori chicken has taken over UK!

        Liked by 1 person

        1. This is true, Arv. And it’s also true that India does now do international cuisine much better than it used to. I always used to avoid places doing ‘Western Food’ when I first travelled in India (and Nepal), but it is as good now as it would be in the West.

          And it’s perfectly true what you say about Indian Food in the West; it is often said that Chicken Tikka is now the UK national dish!

          Liked by 1 person

  2. An extraordinary place, Mick, where death and living coexist and are centred round the river Understandably photographs are discouraged close to the cremations but even your long distance one conveys a real sense of the place. An interesting article – and you really had no other option for a title!!

    Liked by 1 person

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