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Kolkata vs Varanasi

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We are taking a three and a half week trip to India in February. beginning in Delhi and going to Jaipur, Ranthambore, Agra ... and then to the southern Ganges River Valley. We will be on a boat on the Ganges, ending in Kolkata. We have about two or three more days when we arrive in Kolkata, and my thought was to stay there - in a nice hotel! - and arrange a couple day tours of the city, before we fly home to San Francisco with only one stop.

There is one other possibility - pretty much skipping Kolkata and flying to Varanasi and seeing that city before flying out with a change of planes in Delhi, and then a two segment flight home.

I am feeling that while Varanasi looks intriguing and well worth a visit, we will be at the end of our trip, probably a little tired, and maybe adding another flight, plus a significantly longer journey home ... is it worth it. Especially just for a day or two after the extra travel time. And what about Kolkata - it seems that if we're there, it would be a shame to just leave without seeing any of it.

I have wanted to visit India for a long time - my husband not so much. So - I have convinced/persuaded him to come along ... although I might have gone by myself if he hadn't agreed to come with me. I'm just trying to make this trip as enjoyable and hassle-free as possible - knowing all travel is unpredictable, and likely India even more than most. All part of the adventure!

Any ideas regarding Kolkata v Varanasi?

***Not asking for suggestions right now on the other destinations ; ) ***

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