Flight Booking Tour Package
Best 15 Places to Visit near Varanasi

Best 15 Places to Visit near Varanasi

Nestled along the sacred banks of the Ganges River, Varanasi stands as an eternal symbol of India's spirituality, history, and culture. This ancient city, with its labyrinthine alleys, resplendent temples, and serene ghats, has long been a magnet for pilgrims, seekers, and wanderers. However, Varanasi is not just a destination in itself; it is also a gateway to a treasure trove of captivating places waiting to be explored. As you immerse yourself in the mystical aura of Varanasi, don't forget that there is a world of enchantment lying just beyond its boundaries.

In this article, we invite you to embark on a journey beyond Varanasi, unveiling the charismatic destinations that grace its vicinity. These nearby treasures offer a diverse tapestry of experiences, from serene natural wonders to architectural marvels, from spiritual retreats to Cultural experiences near Varanasi.

List of Top 15 Places to Visit near Varanasi

Varanasi is known for its serenity and spiritual essence. Imagine, for a moment, the prospect of stepping out of Varanasi's bustling lanes and into a world of tranquillity. Just a short drive away, the Sarnath Archaeological Site, where Lord Buddha delivered his first sermon after attaining enlightenment. Here, you can wander among ancient stupas, visit the Mulagandhakuti Vihara, and reflect upon the profound teachings of Buddhism amidst serene surroundings. However, the list of places to visit near Varanasi is unending. So, let us uncover some best of them.

  • Sarnath | Where Buddhism was Born
  • Chunar Fort | A Historic Hilltop Gem
  • Nalanda University Ruins | Relics of Wisdom
  • Ramnagar Fort | A Riverside Marvel
  • Sonepur Cattle Fair | Asia's Grand Gathering
  • Vindhyachal | The Divine Oasis
  • Allahabad | Confluence of Sacred Rivers
  • Jaunpur | A Forgotten Architectural Marvel
  • Kaushambi | Unearthing Ancient Relics
  • Chandauli | Natural Beauty Unveiled
  • Vikramshila | A Lost Buddhist University
  • Ghazipur | Land of Revered Saints
  • Bhadohi | The Carpet Capital
  • Mirzapur | A Tapestry of Natural Wonders
  • Bodh Gaya | The Enlightenment Pilgrimage

1. Sarnath | Where Buddhism was Born

Located merely 13 kilometres from Varanasi, Sarnath stands as one of the most significant historical sites near Varanasi. This sacred land is where Lord Buddha delivered his first sermon after attaining enlightenment, making it a crucial part of Varanasi's tourist attractions. Visiting Sarnath offers a profound cultural experience, allowing you to delve into the origins of Buddhism.

Major Attractions: The Dhamek Stupa and Mulagandhakuti Vihara

Things to do:

  • Explore the Dhamek Stupa and the Ashoka Pillar.
  • Visit the Mulagandhakuti Vihara, a modern Buddhist temple.
  • Meditate at the serene Sarnath Meditation Park.

2. Chunar Fort | A Historic Hilltop Gem

Chunar Fort is a historical marvel just a short drive away from Varanasi. This offbeat place around Varanasi boasts a rich history dating back to the 16th century. Exploring the fort provides a glimpse into India's colonial past and its strategic significance. It's among the best day trips near Varanasi, offering breathtaking views of the river and surrounding landscapes while immersing you in history.

Major Attractions: A hilltop fort with panoramic Ganges views and a historical dungeon

Things to do:

  • Explore the historic fort and its impressive architecture.
  • Enjoy panoramic views of the Ganges River from the fort.
  • Visit the Sun Temple and Chandra Prabha Wildlife Sanctuary nearby.

3. Nalanda University Ruins | Relics of Wisdom

Journey further east, and you'll encounter the Nalanda University ruins, a testament to India's ancient educational prowess. This historical site near Varanasi is a treasure trove for history enthusiasts and offers a unique cultural experience.

Major Attractions: Ancient university ruins showcasing Buddhist architecture and learning

Things to do:

  • Explore the ancient remnants of Nalanda University.
  • Explore the Nalanda Archaeological Museum.
  • Visit nearby Nalanda and Pawapuri for additional historical sites.

4. Ramnagar Fort | A Riverside Marvel

For a perfect blend of history and scenic beauty, Ramnagar Fort is an excellent choice among the best day trips near Varanasi. Situated on the eastern bank of the Ganges, this fort showcases impressive architecture and a rich collection of artefacts.

Major Attractions: A riverside fort with a museum and traditional royal artefacts

Things to do:

  • Tour the fort's museum.
  • Attend the Ramnagar Ramlila during the Dussehra festival.
  • Take a scenic boat ride on the Ganges River.

5. Sonepur Cattle Fair | Asia's Grand Gathering

Sonepur, a charming town near Varanasi, is known for hosting Asia's largest cattle fair, a unique cultural experience that you won't find in many travel destinations. It's an offbeat place around Varanasi where you can witness the vibrant tapestry of rural India.

Major Attractions: Asia's largest cattle fair featuring a vibrant mix of culture and commerce

Things to do:

  • Witness the lively cattle fair and animal trade.
  • Explore the bustling market.
  • Attend cultural performances and enjoy local delicacies.

6. Vindhyachal | The Divine Oasis