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Nadesar Palace, Varanasi, India

Our rating: First Class

Nadesar Palace is a newly converted small palace, with only 10 rooms and suites. The palace itself was built by the East India Company and acquired by Maharaja Prabhu Narain Singh in the 19th Century, and has accommodated a number of notable royal guests over the years.

It is situated within the grounds of the larger, more modern hotel, the Taj Ganges, though is very much a separate hotel in its own right and is surrounded by trees and small fields, despite being in within the city of Varanasi. The rooms are beautifully furnished in a heritage style with magnificent four-poster beds, and the suites come with a separate living room and dressing area. The marble-clad bathrooms are huge, with free standing bathtubs and a separate shower cubicle with brand new power showers.

The service is fantastic, with butlers on hand to help you with all your requests. Breakfast, lunch and dinner can be served in the magnificently proportioned dining room, or set up on one of the balconies or terraces, or in your room if you prefer. There is a small but relaxing outdoor pool, and there is a Jiva Spa with three treatment rooms and a yoga room, where the excellent staff offer a range of wonderful treatments.

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    Alternative places to stay nearby

    Where possible, we like to offer a range of accommodation for each stop of your trip, chosen by our specialists as some of their favorite places to stay. To help you make the right choice, we give each property a rating based on its facilities and service, but we also look for hotels with distinct character or a location that can’t be bettered.

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    Experiences while staying here

    The following activities are designed to give you the most authentic experiences of the area where you’re staying. We work with local guides, who use their knowledge and often a resident’s eye to show you the main sights and more out-of-the-way attractions. Our specialists can also suggest outdoor pursuits and activities, such as cooking classes, that will introduce you to the traditions of the area’s inhabitants.

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      Evening Boatride to the Ghats


      In the early evening the ghats (or bathing steps) come alive once more as hundreds of pilgrims return for evening worship. Young priests from nearby ashrams perform their daily rituals looking out to the sacred Ganga, whilst conch shells and bells create a cacophony of sound.