Varanasi is considered the holiest of India’s seven holy cities. It is the capital of Uttar Pradesh. It is one of the oldest continuously inhabited cities in the world and the oldest ion India. Varanasi is referred by many sobriquets including, “the city of light” and “the city of learning”. Gautama Buddha is believed to have delivered his first sermon in Varanasi. It is sometimes called Benaras or Kashi.
Places to Stay
Many hotels in Varanasi are suitable for budget travellers which include the City Inn (Rs 900), Hotel River Place (Rs 700) and Hotel Padmini International (Rs 1200)
Dhrupad Mela, celebrated every year in February-March is one of the major events in Varanasi. Mahashivrathri held in February is one of the major festivals celebrated here.
Hindi is the local language spoken in Varanasi. English and Urdu are commonly used languages.
Places to Visit
The interesting places to visit in Varanasi are Ramnagar Dashashwamedh Ghat, Annapurna Temple all located within 15 kms.
How to Get There
Varanasi is served by Lal Bahadur Shastri International Airport, which is approximately 26 km from the city centre in Babatpur. Domestic flights to Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata and other cities are available here.
Varanasi Junction, commonly known as Varanasi Cantt Railway Station, is the city's largest train station. It is one of the busiest train stations with over 200 hundred passing through each day.
NH2, NH7 and NH56 run through Varanasi connecting it to major centers such Delhi, Kanpur, Kolkata and Agra as well as Lucknow. The best bus operators that offer quality service include UPSTRC, Online bus ticket booking facility can save you a lot of time and energy.
Situated 145 km from Chennai, Vellore has been the capital of many kingdoms such as Pallava, Chola, Nayak, Maratha, and Bijapur Sultan. Vellore is also well known for the 16th century Vellore Fort. Today it has a vast mix of medical and educational institutes - Christian Medical College and Vellore Institute of Technology being the most popular. Temples and Monuments are also a great tourist option here throughout the year.
Budget Hotels in Vellore
Hotels in Vellore are reasonably priced. Some budget-friendly options are Golden Temple Guest House (Tariff-Rs. 200), Ramachandraa Residency (Tariff-Rs. 175), and Veena Residency (Tariff-Rs. 594).
The official language of Vellore is Tamil. Hindi, Kannada, and Malayalam are also spoken here.
Events in Vellore
Pongal observed on 14 January is a traditional festival here. Saraswathi Pooja is celebrated in September-October to mark the end of Navarathri.
Places to See in Vellore
Vellore Fort is a noted tourist attraction. Ratnagiri Murugan Temple and Srilakshmi Golden Temple are worth a visit. The Assumption Cathedral and the 150-year-old St. John's Church inside the fort are equally well known.
How to Get There
The nearest domestic airport is the Tirupati Airport (100 km) and the nearest international airport is Chennai International Airport (130 km).
Vellore has three railway stations - Katpadi Junction (5 km), Vellore Contolement and Vellore Town Station that connect it to other major stations.
The new city bus station is located near Chelliamman Temple and the old bus station near the Vellore fort. Vellore has many private bus operators such as Sri Venkateswara Bus Service, Sridhar Bus Service, and Rao Travels that provide excellent bus service. Utilise the discounts and offers when you are booking a bus ticket online.