Dashashwamedh Ghat is one of the oldest, most astounding and important ghats that, located at the bank of the river Ganga very near to the old Vishwanath Temple in Kashi. The unvarnished meaning of the Dashashwamedh is the Ghat which means riverfront of the ten sacrificed horses; where dash meaning 10, ashwa meaning horses and medh meaning sacrifice.
There are two old beliefs regarding the Ghat, the first one goes like this; Lord Brahma had created the Dashashwamedh Ghat in order to welcome The Divine Lord Shiva and the second one is that Lord Brahma had sacrificed ten horses in a yajna (prayer ceremony) here. The Dashashwamedh Ghat was reconstructed by the Bajirao Pesava I after it was taken down by the Mughals previously. It was later reconstructed by the Queen of the Indore, Ahilyabai Holkar in the year 1774, after again being brought down by the Mughals.
The Ghat is very famous for the Agni Pooja which is held here daily in the evening by an assembly of the pandits who are devotees of Lord Shiva, River Ganges, Surya i.e, The Sun, Agni i.e, Fire and as well as the whole universe. Tourists and visitors can see the magnificent and colourful riverfront view. A group of pandits will always be seen performing religious ceremonies at this Ghat. It is great to see the real charm of this Ghat in the evening when The Ganga Aarti is performed here. This ghat has become the religious place for the devotees, followers and pilgrims for many many decades now and a great tourism place for tourists as well.
Historically, it is considered to be the most popular and important ghat among the Hindu followers. Near the Dashashwamedh Ghat, there are several religious temples as well as tourists’ destinations and dorms.
On account of great festivals, The Hindu devotees come in a really huge number because of the different religious significance that the Ghat holds. The Ghat has been maintaining its beauty with the various Hindu God temples and religious sites present on and nearby to it. Devotees and Pilgrims come here to perform a variety of rituals and religious ceremonies. The evening Aarti of the Ganga at this Ghat draws a huge crowd from every corner of the city and country as well. Some of the devotees, believers and followers come here each day in the morning to pay homage to their Lord after having a holy bath in the Ganga water.
One can be filled with spiritual thoughts if he\she spend some good quality time at this Ghat. Some people are used to the daily meditation in the early morning and perform it every single day at the Ghat because of its beautiful environment, peaceful atmosphere, cool and fresh air. Spending some time here can make one feel as if he\she is experiencing heaven on land. The sunrise and sunset scene in the morning and evening respectively are the most beautiful scenes one could capture, the sunrise and sunset throw shades onto Ganga making it look even more magnificent.
Dashashwamedh Ghat is well known for the great ritual named Ganga Aarti which is performed each evening after the sunset. Thousands of earthen lamps are dipped in the Ganga River as floating lamps which look beautiful when they float and it also is a great religious ritual of the Hindu Believers. The Ganga Aarti is a religious ceremony which is performed at the bank of the Ganga River by a assemble of young pandits who are draped in a saffron colour dress having puja thali and a huge aarti lamp made out of brass usually.
Ganga Aarti starts with the blow of the mollusc shell followed by the aarti with large flaming lamps and reciting of the mantras and the aarti song. The whole environment becomes lights up by the flammed light of the lamp. People begin to arrive at the Ghat by 5 pm in the evening to get their proper places in order to have the perfect view of the aarti. Some people along with the tourist love to see the aarti by sitting in a boat in the river. A maha Ganga aarti is held at the Ghat at Kartik Purnima, it attracts an unbelievable number of crowd.