Photo Tour to Dev Deepawali Varanasi
Single Supplement: ₹6500
Varanasi is synonymous with spirituality and Hinduism. Its photographers’ favorite and they throng Varanasi from all over the world to capture the essence of India’s religious beliefs, traditions and a life that gets weaved around the religious beliefs.
The Dev Deepavali is the festival of Kartik Poornima celebrated in Varanasi 15 days after Diwali. The steps of all the Ghats on the riverfront of the Ganges River, from Ravidas Ghat at the southern end to Rajghat, are lit with more than a million earthen lamps (diyas) in honour of Ganga. During Dev Deepawali, houses are decorated with oil lamps and colored designs on their front doors. Firecrackers are burnt at night, processions of decorated deities are taken out into the streets of Varanasi, and oil lamps are set afloat on the river.
Xploring Light now takes you on a mentored photography tour of this ancient city. Prepare for a photographic journey to the Ghats of Varanasi, where much of what Mark Twain described over a hundred years ago can still be witnessed unchanged. This photography tour has its focus set in solving the dilemma in photographing people on the streets, SEEING the UNSEEN and creating unique frames by going beyond the clichés of shooting Ghats in most mundane way.
The four-day mentored photography tour to Varanasi is designed to provide in depth knowledge and understanding of how to SEE the UNSEEN and create images that stand out from millions of mundane images clicked by thousands of DSLR owners. Tour calendar also includes photographing Dev Diwali Celebrations along the Ghats.
The itinerary includes the following activities under the expert guidance of your photography mentor.
- Dev Diwali Celebrations on the Ghats.
- Early morning life on the Ghats.
- Evening Ganga Aarti.
- Walks in the narrow lanes adjoining the Ghats where the ancient city unfolds itself.
- Sessions on travel, outdoor and street photography.
- Image critique sessions.
Pre Tour Analysis:
Each registered participant will be requested to submit their landscape / portrait related images. Our panel will analyse each image to see how to guide each individual during the tour to help them enhance their skills. We will also provide individual feedback to their each submitted image and suggest improvement points.
During the Tour:
Based on the analytical data available with us post “Pre Tour Analysis” we will provide individualized attention to all and ensure they work on their weaknesses and enhance their skills. Evening Gup Shup sessions will be learning oriented and practical tips will be provided based on the mistakes committed by participants during the day.
We shall also have atleast one evening session dedicated to post processing workflow to help them become a complete photographer.
After the tour:
Each participant will be required to submit 3 of his or her best images from the tour. Each image will be analysed and constructive feedback will be provided. Best of the lot will make it to our website and blog; and will be aggressively promoted on FB.
Day 1, Nov. 6: Arrival at Varanasi Check In and relax. People checking in by noon will be guided after reaching there.
Arti Shoot – 7-8 pm Aarti. After Arti shoot the life on the Ghats.
Day 2, Nov. 7: FULL DAY EXPLORING THE GHATS OF VARANASI
Shooting sunrise and ghat activities from the boat and back via streets.
Return to Hotel for Breakfast.
Arti Shoot – 7-8 pm Aarti. After Arti shoot the life on the Ghats.
Returning to hotel after dinner followed by Gup-Shup Session & overnight stay
Day 3, Nov. 8: DEV DEEPAVALI DAY
Walk on the ghat and back via streets.
Evening Dev Diwali :
Shooting the famous Dev Deepavali on various Ghats and returning to hotel after dinner followed by Gup-Shup Session & overnight stay
Day 4, Nov 9: EARLY MORNING ASSIGNMENT SHOOT.
After breakfast, winding up session where certificates will be distributed. Check out at 12 Noon and the tour comes to an end.
Your Tour Mentor be will planning ahead and working on the best possible options to give you opportunity of a lifetime.
Book for the event
• GST @5%
• Twin-sharing accommodation in comfortable A. C. rooms
• All meals during tour days (Veg meals only)
• One Boat ride on the mystic Ganges
• Mentor Fee
What's not Included
• All travel and transfer expenses
• Any kind of personal expenses or optional tours, extra meals and beverages ordered
• Insurance, laundry and phone calls
• Alcoholic / Soft drinks
• Anything that is not included in the Inclusions list (see above)
Events Terms & Conditions
P.S: It’s our endeavor to make this the best possible trip that it can be, but we would not be liable for delays/cancellations due to bad weather or unforeseen circumstances.
Limited seats on first come first serve basis. Discount for accompanying non-photographer companions only.
All prices and fares are quoted in Indian Rupees or otherwise specifically stated. The rates are based on current tariffs and are subject to change due to unforeseen circumstances. While we will do everything possible to maintain the listed prices, if it is necessary to levy a surcharge, we reserve the right to do so, and notification will be given at the time of final invoicing. Current GST is @5% and is a part of the listed price. Any subsequent change of Tax by Govt. before the final execution of tour resulting in higher price will have to be paid by the participant before the tour commencement.
- Photographs shot on the tour are properties of the photographers.
- Photographers abide by the rules and regulations explained by the mentor on the tour and will abide by rules that disallow cameras to be used during specific times of the schedule. (Ex. While another photographer is in action)
- The Management of Xploring Light has every right to ban and deport participants who do not abide by the rules and respect the models and crew. No refund will be given to participants who will be deported back in such eventuality.
- Xploring Light shall not be responsible for injuries, damages, or losses caused to any participant in connection with terrorist activities, social or labor unrest, mechanical or construction failures or difficulties, diseases, local laws, climatic conditions, abnormal conditions or developments, or any other actions, omissions, or conditions outside our control.
- All participants attending Spiritual Varanasi Photo Tour organized and conducted by Xploring Light must complete and sign a reservation form and the “Registration and Disclaimer” form.
Payments, Cancellation and Refunds
To reserve space on a Xploring Light Group or Private Tour, 50% amount is required at the time of your booking.
You can pay using online payment link on website or ask for account details to make NEFT transfers.
Your reservation may be cancelled if full payment has not been received by the last date specified and communicated.
All cancellation notices must be received in writing and will become effective as of the date of the postmark (standard mail or electronic).
Cancellation deductions will be as per following policy:
Rs 10000 cancellation- if cancelled 61 days prior to start of package
- 50% cancellation – if cancelled 60- 45 days prior to start of package
- 80% cancellation – if cancelled 44- 30 days prior to start of package
- 100% cancellation – if cancelled 29-1 days prior to start of package
Any airline tickets issued are subject to the carrier’s refund policy.
The Tax component will not be refunded.
Leaving a tour in progress, for any reason whatsoever, will not result in a refund, and no refunds will be made for any unused portions of a tour.
We reserve the right to cancel any trip because of inadequate enrolment that makes the trip economically infeasible to operate or because of good-faith concerns with respect to the safety, health, or welfare of the participants.
If a tour is cancelled prior to departure, Xploring Light will provide you with a full refund of money paid to us; except in the event that the cancellation is due to a significant event that makes it infeasible to operate the tour as planned, in which case Xploring Light will provide you with a refund and/or credit toward a future Xploring Light’s Tour, Workshop or Private Tour equivalent to the amount paid to us.
All refunds will be processed within 7-10 business days. We strongly suggest travel insurance to protect your investment.
Accommodation booked on your own behalf is excluded from this refund policy.
By registering for a Xploring Light Tour, Workshop and Private Tour, the participant certifies that he/she does not have any mental, physical, or other condition or disability that would create a hazard for him/herself or other participants; and they are aware of any associated risks created by field locations, activities and weather; that they agree to follow the instructors’ directions, particularly in matters of personal and group safety, including but not limited to the importance of hydration, need for nutritious snacks, altitude sickness, exhaustion, leave no trace, sunscreen, bug dope, danger of overhangs, footing, vehicle safety, boat safety, hot air balloon safety, helicopter safety, ferry safety, common-sense safety, respect for others, etc.
Xploring Light and its designated tour operator reserve the right in their sole discretion to accept, decline to accept, or remove any participant on a Xploring Light’s Tour. Workshop or Private Tour.
Xploring Light and the tour operator reserve the right, without penalty, to make changes in the published itinerary whenever, in their judgment, conditions warrant or if they deem it necessary for the comfort, convenience, or safety of participants.
Neither Xploring Light, its designated tour operator, nor its tour administrator shall be liable for any air carrier’s cancellation penalty incurred by the purchase of a non refundable ticket to or from the participant’s Xploring Light’s Tour, Workshop or Private Tour departure city.
Baggage and personal effects are at all times the sole responsibility of the participant.
Participants in Xploring Light Tour, Workshop and Private Tour must be 18 or over. Anyone under 18 must be accompanied by a parent or guardian for the entire journey.
Prices are per person, based on two people sharing with private bath or shower. In some specific tours like Iceland, Norway, Slovenia or Faroe Islands, proper hotels are not available as we move interiors and we book cottages which have multiple rooms. These rooms may have varied bed arrangements with some even having bunk beds. In such scenario the bath and/0r shower will be shared by all occupants of the cottage.
Passports, Visas and other Entry/Exit Requirements
All guests including children must be in possession of a machine-readable passport valid for 6 months after their trip return date along with applicable visas. Due to government imposed security/ immigration measures, passport and emergency contact information is required for all guests prior to the start of tour. It is the guest’s sole responsibility to secure and/or pay for any and all visas, reciprocity fees, affidavits, immunizations, etc. that are required to be permitted entry into each destination. In some countries you may be subject to entry (reciprocity) fees and/or departure taxes/ exit fees which will be collected at the airports upon entry/departure by local government authorities. Please note that entry to any country may be refused even if the required information and travel documents are complete. For up-to-date detailed information on travel documents and visas, entry/exit taxes and further information on entry and exit requirements please check with your Travel Agent or local consular services. Obtaining and carrying these documents is your sole responsibility. Xploring Light bear no responsibility for such information and will not be responsible for advising and/or obtaining required travel documentation for any guest, or for any delays, damages, and/or losses including missed portions of your vacation related to improper documentation.
We reserve the right to cancel, reschedule or re-route the Xploring Light Tour, Workshop, Private Tour up until last minute, due to inclement or unsafe weather conditions, safety or other uncontrollable circumstances. A full refund of the tour costs will be given. Accommodation booked on your own behalf is excluded from this refund policy. All refunds will be processed within 7-10 business days.
Xploring Light strongly recommends purchasing travel insurance that protects you and your investment in the event of a sudden emergency before or during your trip and coverage for trip cancellation or interruption, illness, injury, and damage, loss or theft of baggage, as well as emergency assistance.
The itineraries and staff presented on this website are subject to modification and change by Xploring Light or its designated tour operator. Every reasonable effort will be made to operate programs as planned, but alterations may still occur after final itineraries are sent. Xploring Light makes every attempt to provide photographic opportunities during the best possible light, but this is often compromised by daily itineraries and travel schedules. Since the best light is just after Sunrise and just before Sunset when the Sun is low, it is impossible to visit all locations during these limited hours. Xploring Light makes every attempt to instruct throughout the tour. It is important that you arrive with a working knowledge of your cameras settings. Xploring Light does not provide any classroom instruction on the basic camera operation. Don’t be afraid to ask questions and seek out your mentor when you need help.
You must be in good physical and mental health. You must be able to maintain the pace of the group throughout the tour. Any physical condition, diet, or treatment requiring special attention must be reported in writing when you register. Failure to participate in daily activities due to physical or mental health will not result in any refund. For special dietary requirements, we do our best to convey this information to restaurants and food establishments, but communication of these requirements to restaurants and food establishments is ultimately your responsibility.
Xploring Light do not employ medical personnel. Any necessary medical attention must be sought at a local facility, if available, at the guest’s expense. Xploring Light is not responsible or liable for losses or costs incurred due to unavailability of medical services, or medical services obtained while on vacation, or for the quality of the care or services received. Medical care in other countries is not always comparable to care that you may receive in your local area. You are encouraged to purchase medical insurance that will cover you while on vacation. Your regular health insurance benefits may not apply abroad.
In purchasing your photo tour, you attest that you are physically fit for it. If you have concerns, please request additional details about your journey from your Travel Agent or Xploring Light.
We are here to provide the best services possible but in doing so we will not tolerate abusive or aggressive behavior from our Guests. We will refuse to deal with and may terminate the photo tour of guests who assault our Company Representatives or who are abusive or aggressive. When you make a booking, you accept responsibility for the proper conduct of all members of your party including yourself during your stay. We reserve the right at any time to terminate the travel arrangements and/or cease to deal with any party member(s) whose behavior, in the reasonable opinion of us or our suppliers, may cause danger, upset, disruption or distress to anyone else or damage to property. Full cancellation charges will apply and no refund will be made. We shall have no obligation to pay compensation or meet any costs or expenses (including but not limited to alternative accommodation and return transportation arrangements) guest may incur as a result of the travel arrangements being terminated.
If you damage the accommodation in which you are staying or any property, you must reimburse the accommodation provider or property owner concerned for the cost of the damage before the end of your stay if the cost has been established by then or as soon as it has been established if later. You must indemnify us for the full amount of any claim (also including legal costs) made against us. Criminal proceedings may be instigated. Xploring Light is not responsible for any costs incurred concerning a guest removed from a guided photo tour or aircraft, ship or train. Guests agree not to hold Xploring Light or any of its related entities liable for any actions taken under these terms and conditions.
If you plan to extend your tour either before or after the actual tour dates, it is your sole responsibility to make travel and stay arrangements. Xploring Light does not encourage bookings through us and even if we decide to do, it will be at additional cost payable to us at the time of booking
We reserve the right to take photographs or videos during the operation of any tour or part thereof and to use the resulting photography, videos, or recordings for promotional or commercial use.
By making a reservation on a Xploring Light Tour, Workshop or Private Tour, the participant agrees to allow his/her likeness to be used by Xploring Light, and authorized third parties, and the Tour Operator without compensation to the participant. If the participant prefers that his/her likeness not be used, he/she must notify us in writing prior to departure of the trip.
Copyright in all photographs, video, and related materials created by the participant (“tour Materials”) shall belong to the participant upon creation. The participant grants to Xploring Light a non-exclusive, worldwide, irrevocable license to use any tour Materials provided to Xploring Light and/or the Tour Operator in any media for the following limited purposes: editorial use, promotion of this editorial use and promotion of Xploring Light’s travel programs
Xploring Light will not be liable for any delay in, change to or cancellation of trips due to ‘Force Majeure’. ‘Force Majeure’ means a circumstance beyond the reasonable control of Xploring Light and includes, but is not limited to, war or threat of war, riot, civil strife, terrorist activity, industrial dispute, disease, industrial or nuclear disaster, adverse weather conditions, fire and strikes.
Other Terms and Conditions may apply to some tours and will be provided with pre-trip emails or mailings. By registering for a Xploring Light Tour, Workshop or Private Tour, the participant agrees to the Responsibility statement and the Terms and Conditions herein.
* Pls. download the Travel Declaration. Fill, sign and submit it before start of the tour.
How different are tours and photo tours?
Unlike travel agents who plan your holiday based on what is hot in that season with almost no inclination to offer you what you would want to see, Photo Tours are innovative ways to experience a place through the guidance of a professional photographer. All of our photo tours are fun with a loads of learning and knowledge sharing. Moreover, since the group consists of photography enthusiasts only it makes your experience your experience more focused and fun filled.
What is the suggested equipment for this tour?
For candids a mid telephoto lens in the range of 70-200 or even 100-400 works best. Wide angle lenses like 10-22 or 16-35 are required to capture the beautiful ambience of the Ghats, Street Photography and cover the spectacle called Dev Deepavali. The entire city will be very crowded and it is advisable to take extreme care of your camera equipment.
What are the pre requisites for this tour?
The only pre-requisites are good health to be able to walk long distances on Ghats and an avid interest for Indian Culture and/or photography.
I am a rank beginner in photography / I only have a simple point and shoot camera. Can I be a part of this tour?
Oh yes very much! We always encourage every photography enthusiast whether an experienced photographer or not to attend such organized photo tours.
Feel free to be a part of this tour and get to take valuable tips home from our skilled team of experts and other participants as well.
How many participants are expected to share a Room?
All participants are accommodated in twin-sharing rooms. Single supplements are charged extra. Please enquire with us about your single supplement charges.