We Start On
The city that worships taboos, life and death lures us during one of the biggest celebrations of the year! There are only a handful of places that have managed to hold on to their old-world charm and mystique. One of them is Varanasi, and White Collar Hippie is travelling this Dusshera to get up close and personal with this colourful city. We’re intrigued by the cycle of life and death that plays itself out with such unabashed abandon here. So we’ll “begin again” by exploring the world-famous ghats, and ancient pathways to the temples and mosques of Hindus & Muslims. We explore local delicacies and hidden alleys that tell their own story. We’ll go to the famous university, and site of Sarnath. And then, we’ll dig deeper to learn about the unique traditions of the sadhus, especially the aghoris by visiting them at night! We’ll celebrate Dusshera the way it’s meant to be celebrated – in a mystical, religious, beautiful Indian city full of culture.
Our Alpha Mike Foxtrot (military slang for Adios, motherf*****s!) program is the best job in the world: 3 hosts travel for 6 months straight!
Chief Foxtrot reporting for duty on this trip! Happy-go-lucky and always eager to help, we think Foxtrot is an excellent travel companion. A sneak-peak at classified documents tells us that this chief has an eagle eye and is always taking photographs – nothing escapes Foxtrot’s attention.
Kashi is known as the the city of light, where we will walk the city centre through old paths to temples and mosques, and observe traditional rites like the cremation rituals of the burning ghat. We’ll look for the foundations of the city as we explore this place of Shiva!
We wake up before the sun and go on an early morning boatride up the river, the best way to experience the city as the locals will tell you! We will be filled with local stories, do a small lamp-ritual on the river, and look at a hidden sun temple.
(flickr.com/ Aravindan Ganesan)
Varanasi is also known as 'Mahasamstana', the great cremation ground of Shiva. We will go from the land of the living to the house of the dying and on the way, meet some flesh-eating Aghori sadhus! To make things interesting we will do this walk at night, ending it with a late ritual worship of the Goddess of Sorrows.
What's better than being on a boat in Benares in the morning? Being on a boat for a Yoga session at sunrise! This experience is going to be as memorable as it is relaxing.
Our guesthouse situated right next to Assi Ghat, on the riverbank. It is a beautifully done up space with panoramic view of the ghats and a calm, spiritual vibe. It also has an organic cafe, yoga classes and a library full of books on spirituality and more!
Varanasi may be one of the oldest places in India, but with its influx of travellers from over the world, it has a mix of cuisines ranging from Japanese to Italian to delicious local food. We have curated our itinerary so that we explore what this city offers, in every meal!
The prices quoted are for online payment, payment by bank transfer, or cheque. You can pay the trip deposit to block your spot. In order to confirm your spot, you must make full payment before the due date notified. If full payment is not received your booking may be cancelled and your trip deposit retained by us as cancellation fee.
All prices and details quoted on White Collar Hippie’s website are to the best of our knowledge and constantly updated from time to time. Prices may be changed at the discretion of the partner destination or other service providers involved without prior notice, and White Collar Hippie will not be held liable for such changes. In case of a conflict, the prices charged by the partner destinations and service providers involved will be final.
If it becomes necessary to cancel your booking, you must notify White Collar Hippie immediately by mail on firstname.lastname@example.org. Cancellation will take effect only after we receive the email from you. Following is the cancellation policy:
20 days prior to departure - 100% total amount and/or trip deposit refunded
10 to 19 days prior to departure - 50% refunded
3 to 9 days prior to departure - 20% refunded
0 to 2 days prior to departure - no refund
Please note that the above quoted amounts may change without notice. If the tour/itinerary price is quoted as a package, no partial refunds or credit will be given for services not used. White Collar Hippie reserves the right to cancel any trip or booking in which case participants will be given a refund in full. However, you will not be entitled to make any further claim for any injury, loss, expenses or damage (either direct or consequential) or for any loss of time or inconvenience which may result from such cancellation (including but not limited to any travel reservation, visa, passport and vaccination charges, or departure, gear purchases, airport and airline taxes). We strongly recommend that you book refundable tickets. We also recommend that you obtain travel insurance upon booking.
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The best thing about WCH is that these guys are totally customer centric, right from booking accommodations to setting an itinerary! The itinerary itself doesn't feel like you're on some tour with a rigid schedule. It is pretty free flowing, but extremely well thought out at the same time. I recently went for their Windrush Rising trip in place of my cancelled Eurotrip and I genuinely believe it was one of the best decisions I made.
Trekking with WHC has been one of the most beautiful experience & with perfect team cordination & arrangments provided even at the top of the mountain Wouldn"t expected more, the vibe was just right with like minded people waiting for sunrise. Would highly reccomend everybody to go with WHC (you guys rock!!) thanks for being patient. Thanks Kunal for helping me till the end & Kuntal for sharing your experiences. & would love to trek again in any furture treks.