Ghats of Kashi
ASSI GHAT :
Assi Ghat is an important ghat of Varanasi and it’s the southeren most end of the ancient city. Numerous References about this ghat are found in Matsya purana, Kurmu purana, Padma purana & Skanda purana. According to a belief It is the same place where after slaying demon Durgasur, the sword (Khadga) from the hand of Goddess Durga fell. The place, where sword (Khadga) had fallen resulted in flowing of big stream known as Asi river. The confluece place of river Ganga and Asi known as Asi or Assi ghat.
TULSI GHAT :
It is named after the great hindu saint poet Tulsidas (1547-1622 A.D.) who wrote Ramcharitmanas stayed here for a very long period. Earlier it was know as Lolark ghat. In 1941 Baldeo Das Birala Made this Ghat pucca. During Hindu lunar month of Kartika (Oct./Nov.) world famous Krishna Leela is also performed here with great conventional Rites.
MATA ANANDA MAYI GHAT :
Mata Ananda Mayi purchased this ghat & surrounding area from British in 1944 and made this ghat pucca in addition to run an Ashrama (Institution) & a charitable hospital.
JAIN GHAT :
Seventh Jain Tirthankar Suparshvanath was born nearby. So in 1931 Jain community made a pucca ghat and named it as Jain ghat. At present most of Jain families live here.
CHET SINGH GHAT:
It is a historical fortified ghat. The place has witnessed a fierce battle between the troops of Warren Hastings and Maharaja Chet Singh in 1781. A.D. The beautiful fort and the ghat has been taken from British by Maharaja Prabhu Narayan Singh in the later half of 19th cent.
HANUMAN GHAT :
It is the birth place of Lord Krishna great patron saint Vallabha (A.D.1479-1531). Later on great saint Tulsidas established a Hanuman Temple here during 17th cent. A.D. which made this ghat famous as Hanuman ghat. There also is a shrine of Ruru (” the Dog”) Bhairava, one of the 8th Bhairavas protecting the city from 8th directions .
HARISH CHANDRA GHAT :
This ghat is name after a mythological King Harish Chandra, who once worked at the cremation ground here for the preservance of truth and charity but at the end the God rewarded him and restored his lost thorn and his dead son to him. This is one of the two cremation ghat, and people also believed it as Adi Manikarnika (” the original creation ground”). In 1740 A.D. Narayana Diksit, a religious guru of Peshvas renovated this ghat and made it partly pucca.
VIJAYANAGARAM GHAT :
This was made pucca in 1890 century by the Vijayanagaram State of South India. At the top of it is Swami Karapatri Ashram.
KEDAR GHAT :
It is named after Kedareshwar temple which is a major temple of Varanasi and the patron deity of the southern segment.. At the top of the ghat also exists the Harpapa Tirtha & Gauri Kund in the same way as it is situated at the Kedar Dham. Reference of this ghat and the temple of Kedareshwar comes in many puranic literature.
CHOWKI GHAT :
This ghat is famous for the huge pipala (Ficus religiosa) tree at the top of the Steps which shelters a great array of stone figures of snakes, nagas. This ghat was built in 1790 century.
MAANSAROVAR GHAT :
At the top of this ghat there is a sacred pond, which is the representation of highly sacred Kailash Mansarovar Lake lying in Tibet. This ghat was built by Raja Mana Singh of Jaipur in c. 1585, and was rebuilt in c. 1805. The shrines of Rama, Lakshman, and Dattatreya are in the vicinity.
NARAD GHAT :
Named because of a shiva linga established by “Dev Rishi” (heavenly saint) Narada. The ghat was constructed by Dattatreya Swami, a monastery chief, in c. 1788. The four important images in the upper- side are Naradesvara, Atrisvara, Vasukisvara and Dattatreyesvara.
CHAUSATTHI GHAT :
This ghat is described in the Kashi Khand of Skanda Puran (61.176-177) which is named after the temple of 64 yoginis called Chausatthi Devi. In c. 1670 King of Udaipur (Rajasthan) renovated thisghat.
RANA MAHAL GHAT :
It is made by king of Udaipur in c.1670. At the top there is shrine of Vakratunda Vinayaka, one among the yatra of fifty-six ganesha.
DARBHANGA GHAT :
Together with magnificent building along the ghat and a grand Shiva temple in Neelkantha area, the king of Darabhanga (Bihar) made them in 1915. The building along the ghat shows a massive Greek pillars style. The shrine of Kukutesvara lies at the top.
AHILYABAI GHAT :
At the place of an old site of Kevelyagiri Ghat, in c. 1778 queen Ahilyabai Holkar of Indore made this a pucca ghat. For the first time name of a person was added after the ghat. She was also responsible for re-building the Vishvesvar temle, as exists at present, in 1777.
SHITALA GHAT :
In c. 1740 pt. Narayana Diksit the preceptor of Bajirao Pesava-1, made this ghat pucca. In fact, this is the southern extension of Dashaswamedh Ghat, where exists Dasasvamedha Tirtha and images of Dashaswamedheswar and. After the famous Shitala Temple was made, this portion of Dashaswamedh ghat is called Shitala Temple.