In this article, we will cover 10 interesting facts about Varanasi. It is a major city in India. It is one of the oldest living cities in the world and has been a leading trading center for centuries. The city is located on the banks of the holy river Ganga, which is considered to be one of the most sacred places in Hinduism.
According to Hindu mythology, Varanasi was founded by Lord Shiva. The city’s name comes from Varuna, the Hindu God of water and the celestial ocean. Lord Shiva stepped on earth at this spot after having destroyed a demon called Tripura. He then bathed in the Ganges River and performed puja (ritual worship).
Varanasi has an estimated population of 1,400,000 people, with about 2 million people visiting every year. The population density is about 2,000 people per square km, which makes it one of the most densely populated cities in India. The main language spoken here is Hindi with some English speakers as well.
The city has been associated with many historical events over the years. Hosting Kumbh Mela which attracts millions of people; is home to many temples dedicated to Hindu gods such as Lord Shiva and Lord Vishnu; is headquarters for Ramakrishna Mission order founded by Swami Vivekananda; is the birthplace of famous poet Kabir Das (1440-1518) and hosting famous music festivals such as Sankat Mochan Music Festival held every year during Durga Puja festival at Sankat.
10 Interesting Facts About Varanasi
1. The Most Ancient Surviving City in the World
Varanasi is the most ancient surviving city in the world.
It was built by Lord Shiva and his wife Parvati on the banks of the river Ganges. One cannot enter this city without taking a bath in the river Ganga, which flows through it.
The city has many temples dedicated to Lord Shiva and Lord Vishnu, who are worshipped here with great devotion by millions of people from all over India.
There are also many other places of interest in this city, such as Dasaswamedh Ghat, Assi Ghat, and Manikarnika Ghat where pilgrims take a dip in the river Ganga before leaving this place.
This ancient city is also famous for its magnificent architectural sites like Sarnath Temple, Ramnagar Fort, Tulsi Manas Mandir, etc., which have been visited by many tourists from different parts of India and abroad since time immemorial.
2. The Epicenter of Sciences
Varanasi is the epicenter of sciences. It is where all the great scientists, from Einstein to Hawking, have come to study and learn. The city is famous for its ancient temples, but it is also famous for its modern educational institutions like Banaras Hindu University (BHU).
Varanasi has been known as a center of learning ever since Vedic times. The city was once called Kashi and it was here that Lord Vishnu took his incarnation as Krishna and killed a demon named Hiranyakashipu. This mythological story has inspired many students who have come to study in this city over time.
The city has some great universities such as Banaras Hindu University (BHU), which was founded in 1916 by Pandit Madan Mohan Malaviya who was an educationist himself. It is one of India’s most prestigious universities with more than 50 departments ranging from law to medicine to engineering etc.
3. A leading Trading Center
Varanasi is a leading trading center in the region and has been so for the last several centuries. It has a huge potential to become a hub for the textile industry. With the advent of new technology and advancement in the industry, Varanasi is going to be the most important city in India.
The main reason for this is that Varanasi is situated along the banks of the river Ganges. The river has always been an important means of transportation, and it was also used as a source of drinking water, agriculture, and fishing during ancient times.
4. Banaras Hindu University (BHU), the Largest University in Asia
Banaras Hindu University (BHU), the largest University in Asia, is a public central university. It was founded by Pandit Madan Mohan Malviya in Varanasi, India. The university was established on September 1, 1916, with just three schools; it now has over 300 affiliated colleges, with an enrollment of nearly 40,000 students.
In its early days, the university was known as City College or Kashi Vidyapith. In 1921, it became Banaras Hindu University and gained autonomy in 1947 when India became independent. During this time period, it was predominantly a liberal arts college but later expanded to include studies such as science, technology, and medicine.
The university has been ranked among the top universities in India since its inception and continues to rank highly today. It offers a wide range of courses including law, medicine, and engineering among others.
5. Highest Number of River Banks in the World
Varanasi has the highest number of river banks in the world. It’s home to 885 ghats along its banks that are used for religious purposes and daily activities such as bathing or cremating bodies.
The main ghat area is known as “Harishchandra Ghat,” named after Harishchandra Gupta who was an 11th-century king who performed penance here for ten years before becoming king of Varanasi in 1037 CE.
6. The Death Hotel
You might have heard about Varanasi. It’s the city of temples, where thousands of people come to wash away their sins and achieve salvation.
But you probably haven’t heard about the ‘death hotel’ there. It’s called Kashi Labh Mukti Bhawan, and it’s where dying people from all over the world come to draw their final breaths.
It’s believed that dying in Varanasi will release you from the cycle of life and death—and reservations are made only for those who have a few days left to live. The limit is two weeks per room, but that doesn’t mean you won’t find yourself staying longer if your death takes longer than expected!
7. The Land Of Temples
Varanasi is the land of temples. It is a city that has been an important pilgrimage site for centuries, and it’s home to many different temples that are still in use today.
The most well-known temple in Varanasi is the Kashi Vishwanath Temple, which is dedicated to Lord Shiva. This temple was built in the 16th century, but it’s said to have been founded by Adi Shankaracharya over 1,200 years ago. It is located on the southern bank of the Ganges River and features an image of Shiva Nataraja—a dancing form of Shiva—that was carved out of marble by a local sculptor named Visvakarma around 1778.
The Kashi Vishwanath Temple also houses an idol of Lord Vishnu, who is said to have visited this spot during his avatar as Lord Krishna; locals believe that this idol dates back to about 1350 BC.
There are many more temples in Varanasi—over 100!—and each one tells its own story about how important this place has been throughout history.
8. A Hub of Rich Literature
Varanasi is a hub of rich literature. It is the place where many great authors have lived and worked. It is known for its rich culture and heritage, which has been preserved over the years.
The city has been an important center of learning since ancient times. It has also been home to some of the most famous writers in history including Kalidas, Munshi Premchand, and Mahadevi Varma.
The city has given birth to some of India’s most famous poets who have made their mark on the world stage by producing works that are still studied today. These poets include Tulsidas, Kabir Das, Bhartendu Harishchandra, Devi Nandan Khatri, Jai Shankar Prasad, Hazari Prasad Dwivedi, Jagannath Dixit, Ramesh Chandra Dutt, and Sri Lal Sahitya who all had a deep connection with Varanasi’s culture and heritage
9. Largest seller of Banarasi silk
Varanasi has the largest seller of Banarasi silk, with production beginning in the early days of the city.
Banarasi silk is famous for its unique designs and rich colors that are used to make luxurious textiles. It is made from cocoons obtained from wild silkworms that live on trees found only in a certain area of Central India.
10. Varanasi is the Home To Lord Shiva And Goddess Parvati
Varanasi is one of the most sacred sites in India because it is believed to have been the home of Lord Shiva and Parvati. It is one of the seven Holy sites of India and is a major spiritual center for Hindus.
You may also like:
How many of these facts about Varanasi did you already know?