by passing in this auspicious place. We stay in a colorful guesthouse on the ancient “ghats” or stone steps leading to the river goddess. We are immersed in the remarkable spiritual atmosphere of the ghats for four days of practice, meditation, learning and exploration. Our itinerary includes boat trips along the river bank at dawn and sunset, witnessing of the great fire ceremonies at night and of the ancient Hindu cremation ceremonies at the burning ghats, and visits to several ancient temples -- Buddhist, Hindu, and Jain. We explore the winding and narrow alleyways of the ancient city with the help of local guides, and visit the place where the Buddha offered his first sermon upon attaining enlightenment.