Mathura Information

Mathura, the birthplace of Lord Krishna is set in the heart of Brajbhooms, on the right bank of river Yamuna.  The legendary pilgrim site well known for its string of picturesque ghats and sacred shrines, attracts a large number of devotees, especially during the festival of Janmashtami (August / September), which celebrates the birth of Lord Krishna.  Mathura, the land of cows is also well known for its milk based sweets like pedas.

Location

Mathura town is situated at the bank of river, Yamuna, downstream of Delhi at 27°35' East longitude, and is stretched along the riverbank in distance of about 6km.

Climate

The climate of Mathura is extreme and tropical.  Summers are hot and winters are cold.  It experiences monsoon from July to September.  The best time to visit Mathura is between the months of October and March.

History

Mathura is the land where Lord Krishna was born.  The region is richly interwoven with the legend of Krishna, kept alive today by millions of devotees who look upon him as the most endearing incarnation of Lord Vishnu, and by specific locations associated with the legend.  Mathura's history dates back to at least 600 BC, and archaeological remains have testified its importance.

Mathura Tourism Information

Mathura, the most ancient of Hindu cities overflows with devotees who come to pay obeisance to Lord Krishna's birthplace.  In this hot and dusty town, pilgrims jostle with priest; incense mingles with smells of sweat and grime; crowds fill the narrow streets and shops spill onto the pavement.  Yet this does not prove to be a deterrent to the thousands of visitors who come to this holiest of cities every year.

Shri Krishna Janmabhoomi

It is believed to be the birth place of Lord Krishna.  The beautiful temple at the Katra Keshav Dev marks the sacred site.

Gita Mandir

The beautiful temple was built by the Birla’s on the Mathura – Vrindavan Road.  It enshrines a fine image of Lord Krishna and the entire Bhagwad Gita is inscribed on the walls of the temple.

Dwarikadhish Temple

This magnificent shrine of Lord Krishna was built in 1814, by Seth Gokulds Parikh, the treasurer of the State of Gwalior.

Vishram Ghat

There are about 25 ghats in Mathura and Vishram Ghat is considered to be the most important.  It is believed the Lord Krishna rested here for a while, after killing Kansa.  Vishram Ghat is also the starting point of the traditional parikrama, the circumambulation of important religious and cultural sites.  The Vishram Ghat is lined with some of the most important shrines of Mathura.  The evening aarti (prayers) is the best time to visit the ghat.

Kans Qila

The ruins of the fort lie on the northern bank of the River Yamuna.  An observatory was built here by Maharaja Sawai Jai Singh (1699-1743) of Amer.

Jama Masjid

It was built in 1661 and is noted for its four lofty minarets.

Government Museum

The museum at Dampier Park was set up in 1847 and is one of the leading centres for research, study and the preservation of Mathura’s splendid heritage of art.  It has the largest collection of Kushana sculptures in the country and rich collections of terracotta, coins, seals, ancient pottery, paintings and bronzes etc.

Mathura Tour Information

Gokul (15km)

It is believed that Lord Krishna was brought here after birth in secrecy by Nand Krishna spent his childhood at this beautiful village on the banks of Yamuna.  It became a major centre of the Bhakti cult during the time of Vallabhacharya (1479-1531).  There are a number of important shrines like, Gokulnath, Madan Mohan, Vitthalnath, Dwarika Nath and Balkrishna etc.  It is also known for Janmashtami celebrations.

Mahavan (18km)

It is famous for the Mathuranath shrine with Chaurasi Khambha (eight four pillars).

Govardhan (26km)

It is named after the "Govardhan Hillock" which according to a legend had been lifted up by Lord Krishna on one finger to protect the local people from the wrath of the rain God, Indra. The sacred site is perched on a narrow sandstone hill known as Giriraj.  It is said that Lord Krishna lifted the Giriraj Mountain on the tip of a finger for 7 days, to shield the people of Braj from the wrath of Lord Indra.  Atop the hill is a temple built by Vallabhacharya in 1520.  There is also a huge masonry tank known as Mansi Ganga.

 Barsana (50km)

It is 19km from Govardhan and is said to be the home of Radha Rani, Lord Krishna’s beloved.  There are temples dedicated to the divine couple Radha and Krishna.  Barsana is also famous for its unique ‘Latthmar’ Holi – celebrations.

Vrindavan (15km)

Vrindavan, the ‘land of 4,000 temples’ is another holy site closely associated with Lord Krishna, who is said to have spent a great deal of time here in playful activities with his friends and gopis. It is about 15km. north of Mathura, lies the celebrated town of Vrindavan which is almost as closely associated with Krishna as Mathura itself.  Indeed one hardly speaks of Vrindavan alone.   It is believed to have been the stage on which Krishna performed his famous romantic and sportive roles.  There are hundreds of temples in Virandavan and the most famous as well as the finest temple in Vrindavan is that of Govinda Deva, dating back to 1590.

Madan Mohan Temple

The shrine near the Kali ghat is associated with the saint Chaitanya and is the oldest existent temple in Vrindavan.  The original idol of Lord Madan Gopal was taken away to Karauli (Rajasthan), to protect it from the Mughal emperor Aurangzeb.  Today, the temple enshrines a replica of the original.

Banke Bihari Temple

It was built in 1864 and is perhaps the most popular shrine here.  The idol of Banke Bihari in the temple was discovered in Nidhi Vana by Swami Haridas ji, an ardent devotee of the Lord.

Radha Vallabh Temple

This famous shrine was established by the radha Vallabh sect.

Jaipur Temple

The exquisitely carved temple of Shri Radha Madhav was built in 1917, by king Sawai Madhav Singh of Jaipur.

Shahji temple

It was built in 1876, by Shah Kundan Lal, a wealthy jeweller of Lucknow. The deities at the temle are popularly known as the Chhote Radha Raman.

Rangaji Temple

It was built in 1851, in the Dravidian style and is noted for  a six storeyed gopuram (gateway) and a gold plated 50 feet high Dhwaja stambha.  Lord Vishnu is depicted here restingon the coils of the sacred Shesha-nag.  The annual festival of jal Vihar of the presiding deity is performed with great pomp and splendour at th tank.  It is also well known for ‘Brahmotsav’ celebration in March to April.

Govind Deo Temple

The magnificent seven storeyed structure is said to have been built at a cost of one crore rupees in 1590, by Man Singh.  It is a fine blend of Hindu and Muslim architectural style.

Shri Krishna – Balram Temple

This shrine of the ISKCON sect, is one the most beautiful temples in Vrindavan.
Seva Kunj According to legends, Lord Krishna performed the Raaslila with Radha and the Gopis here and rested at Nidhi Van.

Manasi Ganga Kunda

Manasi Ganga Kunda is traditionally te starting and the end point of the circumambulation of Govardhana Hill.  This kunda is considered more potent than the Ganges River, because by bathing in the Ganges River one gets liberation and by bathing here one achieves "Krishna Prema:, love of Krishna.

Archaeological Museum

Mathura is not just a land of temples.  It is also a great centre of Buddhism.  In the museum of Mathura, stands a powerful, impressive Bodhisattva, which belongs to the Kushana period.  Mathura stakes claim to the honors of having produced the first images of Buddha.  The Mathura school of art, which flourished during the Kushana time, was influenced both by Buddhism and Jainism and by the Scythians.  The coins found during archaeological excavations in Mathura point to the Scythian influence, plaques depicting the cross-legged naked figures of Tirthankara in meditation point Jainism.

Festivals

Holi

Holi is among the most important festivals in this part of the country.  During a full-moon day at the time of February and March, people throw color dye on one another and enjoy the day in merriment.  If you visit the place during this time of the year, you will have the privilege to see some of the most colorful and often boisterous processions.

Janmashtami

Jamashtami, the day when Lord Krishna was born is no wonder celebrated with much pomp and show.  People enact the many legends during the time of Lord Krishna, and folklore and recitals take place throughout the night.  In Mathura, thousands of devotees gather to offer prayer, and the atmosphere gets electrified.  At midnight, the time when Lord Krishna was born in a prison, the celebration reaches a crescendo.

Other places of interest are the Sri Radha Shyam sundar Temple.  Sriji Temple, Jugal Kishor Temple, Kesi Ghat,lal Babu Temple, Raj Ghat, Meera Bai Temple, Imli Tal, Kaliya Ghat, Raman Reti, Varah Ghat and Chir Ghat etc.

Mathura Distance Guide

Mathura to Aligarh 61 Km
Mathura to Allahabad 537 Km
Mathura to Almora 408 Km
Mathura to Badrinath 627 Km
Mathura to Banda 434 Km
Mathura to Bareilly 205 Km
Mathura to Budaun 157 Km
Mathura to Dehradun 363 Km
Mathura to Etawah 175 Km
Mathura to Faizabad 548 Km
Mathura to Fatehgarh 234 Km
Mathura to Ghazipur 728 Km
Mathura to Gonda 525 Km
Mathura to Gorakhpur 676 Km
Mathura to Haridwar 347 Km
Mathura to Jhansi 274 Km
Mathura to Kanpur 344 Km
Mathura to Lakhimpur 412 Km
Mathura to Lucknow 423 Km
Mathura to Agra 54 Km
Mathura to Meerut 212 Km
Mathura to Moradabad 212 Km
Mathura to Nainital 363 Km
Mathura to Pithoragarh 471 Km
Mathura to Rampur 238 Km
Mathura to Saharanpur 308 Km
Mathura to Shahjahanpur 306 Km
Mathura to Uttar Kashi 521 Km
Mathura to Varanasi 669 Km