Pancha-ganga Ghat & Bindu Madhava Temple
Beneath this ghat the Ganges, Yamuna, Sarasvati, Kirana, and Dhutapapa Rivers
are said to meet. It is one of the five main ghats in Varanasi. It is considered
especially auspicious to bathe here during the month of Kartika (Oct-Nov), and
even more so on the full moon day of Kartika.
this ghat is the large Alamgir Mosque built
by Aurangzeb in the 17th century, after he destroyed the major
Bindu Madhava Temple that used to be here.
The present Deity of Bindu Madhava is in a small temple by the mosque. It is
located just above the Pancha-ganga Ghat. If you are taking a boat by yourself,
you can have the boat stop here and walk up to the temple.
Beside the main ghats there are over 100 more. The best time to visit the ghats
is at dawn, when the river is lined with bathers and worshipers; it is very
peaceful. The southern-most ghat is Asi Ghat, which is one of the five special
ghats in Varanasi. There is a large Siva-linga here under a peepal tree.
Asisangameswara (“the lord of the
confluence of the Asi River”) is a Siva-linga temple located near here. This
ghat is the first place to bath at when you do Pancha-tirthas. From this ghat
you can get a boat across the Ganges to Ramnagar, the Maharaja of Varanasi’s
Lolarka Kunda is a bathing tank dedicated
to the Sun. There is the Lolarka Mela Fair
in Aug/Sept. Women come and bathe in this tank to get a son.
Bachraj Ghat there are three Jain temples
on the riverbank. Dandi Ghat is the ghat of
the Dandi Panths holy men. At Hanuman Ghat
there is a temple dedicated to Hanuman. Hanuman Ghat is where
Vallabha Acarya, who was a Vaishnava saint
who spread the glories of Sri Krishna, is said to have been born in the 16th
Kedar Ghat there is a well half-way up the
ghat called Gauri Kund, which is named after Lord Siva’s wife, which is said to
have healing properties. At this ghat is the
Kedareswara Siva-linga Temple.
Manasarovar Ghat is named after the holy
lake which is found at the foot of Mt Kailash in Tibet. Man Singh of Jaipur
built it. At Chaumsathi Ghat is the temple
dedicated to the Chaumsathi (64) Yoginis,
which has deities of Durga and Kali.
Someswara Ghat there is a temple of the
moon, and every kind of disease is supposed to be healed here.
Munshi Ghat is an interesting ghat to look
at. Ahalya Bai Ghat is named after the Maratha queen of Indore.
Singh of Jaipur built Man Mandir Ghat in
1600. Man Mandir Ghat has an Observatory
built by Raja Sawai Jai Singh in 1710, the founder of the city of Jaipur. The
observatory is made up of stone instruments and is very small compared to the
ones in Jaipur or Delhi. It is a little hard to find.
Located near this ghat is a Siva-linga temple
where the linga is immersed in water. The house of the
Dom Raja, who is in charge of the cremation
grounds, is nearby and has tigers painted on it. Dom Raja is a hereditary title.
Mir Ghat there is the
Vishalakshi (“Wide-eyed Goddess”) Temple.
This temple is a shakti pitha and is said to mark the place where a part of the
body of Sati, the wife of Lord Siva, fell.
Next is Lalita Ghat, where there is located
the Nepali Temple dedicated to Pashupateswara Siva,
which is a Nepali-type wooden temple with interesting sculptures. Also here is a
Vishnu temple dedicated to Ganga Keshava.
Further north is Jalasayin Ghat, where
bodies are cremated. Directly next to this ghat is Manikarnika Ghat, which is
one of the most holy ghats.
the very big Scindia Ghat, there is a
partially submerged Siva temple. Agni, the
god of fire, is said to have been born near this ghat.
Dattatreya Ghat, there are the footprints
of a sadhu of the same name. At Rama and Laksman
Ghat there is a Rama and Laksman Temple.
The king of Jaipur built it. Next is Panchganga Ghat.
Gai Ghat has a cow made of stone on it.
is Trilochan Ghat, where there is located
the Siva temple of Tri (“three”) Lochana (“eye”), who has three eyes. Also in
this temple is Varanasi Devi, the
city-goddess of Varanasi.
important Raj Ghat (also called
Adi Keshava Ghat) is the northern most ghat.
Located here is the Adi Keshava Vishnu Temple,
which is located where the Varuna River flows into the Ganges. Lord Vishnu is
said to have first put his feet here when he came to Varanasi.