Suryauday Haveli

1000 Reviews

Star Travel Rating


Review type



Date of travel

January, 2017

Product name

Product country

Product city

Travelled with


Reasons for trip

Culture / Sightseeing

We were meant to stay two-nights at “Suryauday Haveli”: on the River Ganges, Varanasi, but our flights were changed at the last minute, so we only had one night.

The traffic from the airport was dreadful, but eventually the car stopped in a dirty, rough looking area, where two boys from the hotel greeted us. Having hoisted our suitcases on their heads, they set off, with us following in their wake, down litter-ridden narrow lanes trying to avoid tuk tuks and bikes. We wondered where on earth we were heading, especially when rounding a corner, we met a group of buffalo wandering in the opposite direction.

Eventually we reached the hotel. In the office, we were presented with a welcome apple juice drink, had shawls and flower garlands placed round our necks, tried to concentrate on one person telling us about the history whilst another requested passports and asked us to sign the mandatory guest register. Here we discovered that the restaurant was vegetarian and alcohol free.

The hotel, located on Shivala Ghats, was built by the Royal Family of Nepal as a retreat for the aged so it seemed an appropriate choice for two Silver Travellers.
The 13 rooms are centred around an open courtyard on two floors. Our river-facing room, on the second floor (204), provided a view of the Ganges from a low-level window about four foot by two foot.

The room was relatively spacious with simple wooden floor and bedside rugs. There was a wardrobe, safe, tea and coffee making facilities, complimentary water, mini bar with soft drinks, a desk, TV and heater. The modern bathroom was a good size with a walk-in shower and plenty of powerful hot water, if you remembered to switch on the boiler 15 minutes before your shower.

Having been out on an early evening walk and boat ride, we collected our key from reception and confirmed a dinner reservation wasn’t required. However, after changing, we found a full restaurant but were offered a table in the open courtyard which despite braziers, was very cold.

Everyone was most apologetic and assured us a table would be ready in 5 minutes which turned into 10 and then 15. When the restaurant manager said it would be another 15 to 20 minutes, we had a ‘theatrical tantrum’ and within a couple of minutes, a table miraculously appeared in the restaurant.

Service was then understandably attentive with complimentary sparkling water and spicy poppadoms. The meat-free meals were very good: dum aloo benarasi (potatoes cooked in a gravy of tomatoes, cream tempered with fennel seeds and fenugreek leaves) and paneer shahi (cottage cheese in cashew nut sauce gravy) with steamed rice and a bread basket.

Breakfast was a small, but good, buffet of fruit, strawberry lassi, and a hot Indian selection with eggs cooked to order from a menu provided. The masala omelette and poached eggs, served with hot toast, were excellent.

If you’re staying longer, and the weather was warmer, there was a good roof top terrace with loungers (and naughty monkeys) which provided great views of the river.

Helen Jackson

Join the club

Become a member to receive exclusive benefits

Our community is the heart of Silver Travel Advisor, we love nothing more than sharing ideas, inspiration, hints and tips between us.

Come feel the love on a Princess cruise. You’ll enjoy the MedallionClass experience others simply can’t, and it’s exclusively for everyone. Visit incredible destinations and be involved in the best experiences around each one of them.

Experience more with Princess and connect effortlessly with the world around you, spend time away with loved ones, take a moment for yourself, and fall in love with your holiday of a lifetime, every time.

With over 20 years of experience, Wendy Wu Tours has mastered the art of creating exceptional, fully inclusive tours which showcase the very best of each destination.

Each tour is led by a world-class guide, who will highlight the very best of their homeland, and includes authentic cultural experiences so you are not just seeing the sights, but truly immersing yourself in local life.

Say hello to ease at sea. Ambassador’s purpose is simple: they want to inspire every guest to experience authentic cruising, effortlessly and sustainably. Passionate about protecting our oceans and destinations, their ships comply with the highest industry emission standards and there is no single-use plastic on board.

On your voyage, you will receive the warmest of welcomes from the Ambassador community as you sail upon the friendliest ships afloat.

This is a global co-operative co-owned by local partners using real local experts and guides, which supports local communities, environments and wildlife. It offers travellers quirky places to stay, activity holidays and learning experiences. Not In The Guidebooks gets travellers off the beaten track into local culture with day experiences and longer, immersive adventures.

From wild wellness breaks in Wales to painting in Portugal, sustainable adventures in Mauritius to food safaris in Brazil, this is immersive, exciting travel.

Seabourn’s five intimate ships carry guests to the heart of great cities, exclusive yacht harbours and secluded coves around the world, while two new purpose-built expedition ships will combine exhilarating adventures in remote destinations with the sophisticated amenities of the world’s finest resorts at sea.

From the luxury of all suite accommodations to complimentary fine wines and spirits, and a no tipping policy, Seabourn exemplifies the definition of travelling well.