Mathura - The Hometown of Lord Krishna:- Famous as the birthplace of much loved Lord Krishna, Mathura is a sacred city in Uttar Pradesh, Northern India located on the banks of river Yamuna. The place draws flocks of Hindu tourists every year looking to visit the numerous temples in the city.
Devotees throng here to experience the pious beginnings of the Hindu God. The city has numerous small and big temples along with 25 ghats on the river Yamuna where people taking a dip in the evenings would not be an unusual phenomenon. Mathura was also once a Buddhist centre with around 20 monasteries, however, continuous attacks by Afghans and Mughals left the city in ruins. Most of the ruins are now preserved in the archaeological museums.
Major attractions here are religious in nature and include certain sites in relation to Lord Krishna and his parents. Mathura attracts thousands of pilgrims especially on the occasion of Janmashtami (Krishna’s birthday) in August or September and during Holi in March as Barsana’s (a village in Mathura) Holi is famous worldwide. A trip to Mathura is typically connected with a visit to Vrindavan. Vrindavan is another town in Mathura district, where Lord Krishna spent his childhood days.
- Best Time To Visit
The best time to visit Mathura is October to March, as the weather is pleasant during these months. However, Holi is a brilliant time to visit Mathura to enjoy the special traditions and customs of Barsana, a village in Mathura. Janmashtmi, a day to celebrate Krishna's birthday is another important occasion which is very special to experience in Mathura.
- Summer (April - June) : The summer months of April - June do experience higher levels of mercury. However, Mathura is flocked with tourists throughout the year.
- Monsoon (July - September) : Monsoon months are another preferred months to visit Mathura, especially around the festival of Janmashtami, the birthday of Lord Krishna.
- Winters (October - March) : Especially during October-November and February-March, this is a preferred time to visit the colorful city of Mathura. You can also plan your trip around Holi during the month of March.
- How To Reach
The nearest airport is at Agra (50km). Mathura is a main railway station and most trains halt here. It is also well connected by road with buses running through here.
- How to Reach Mathura by Flight
Mathura does not have an airport of its own. The nearest airports are in New Delhi and Agra.
Nearest Airport: Agra Airport (AGR) - 47 kms from Mathura
- How to Reach Mathura by Road
Mathura is easily accessible by road via NH19/NH44.
- How to Reach Mathura by Train
Mathura Junction is well-connected to major rail routes of the country. A number of festival special trains run during peak seasons.
- Commuting Within Mathura
Auto rickshaws as well as cycle rickshaws are present for travel within the city. Local buses also ply here.
- Top 6 Places To Visit In Mathura
1) Govardhan Hill
Situated at a distance of 22 km from Mathura. It has been stated in the Holy Bhagwat Gita that according to Lord Krishna, Govardhan Parvat is not different from him. Therefore, all his worshipers worship the pure rocks of the hill just like they worship his idol. Some interesting places one gets to visit the hills including Mansi Ganga, Mukharvind, and Daan Ghati.
It is said in the history that Lord Krishna during his childhood lifted the Govardhan Hill on one finger to save his village of Mathura from fierce rains and thunderstorm. This hill is thereby considered holy and is visited by worshipers on Guru Purnima, Govardhan Puja in devotion by walking 23 km barefoot around the mountain. After Lord Krishna had saved his village, he told everyone to worship the hill which is why Govardhan Puja is a day after Diwali. It is a serene place, and definitely, a must visit!
The name of the hill has two interpretations. ‘Gau’ (Go) is the Hindi word for the holy cow, and ‘Vardhan’ is the shelter where cows are kept. The cows then give birth in the shed which is covered with grass to eat, water to drink and a place to rest.
On the other hand, ‘Go’ in Sanskrit means senses and ‘Vardhan’ means to control which means that it is a place where one can keep their thoughts in control and offer their life for the salvation of Lord Krishna.
- Open Time: 7:00 AM - 7:00 PM
- How to Reach Govardhan Hill
The nearest railway station is Mathura Junction and many auto-rickshaws, as well as buses, are available from there till Govardhan Hill.
1. There is no favorable climate to visit the place. It is soothing throughout the year.
2. Pets and footwear are not allowed inside. Do carry a camera of high quality so as to capture the beauty of the place. Take care of your belongings too.
2) Sri Krishna Janmabhoomi Temple Complex
It is believed that this temple is situated at the place where Lord Krishna was born and many excavations have tried to prove this belief.
This site has faced brutal destruction during Muslim invasions. Small shrines of various gods and goddesses are seen here within the colossal structure.
- Open Time: All days of the week: 5:00 AM - 12:00 PM, 2:00 PM - 8:00 PM
3) Dwarkadheesh Temple
The temple was constructed in the year 1814 by the treasurer of the Estate of Gwalior, Seth Gokul Das Parikh. The temple lies nearby Vishram Ghat. The temple is dedicated to Lord Krishna. Since Lord Krishna is also referred to as ‘King of Dwarka’, hence the temple got its name. Lord Krishna and Radha are the primary deities in the main shrine of the temple.
The temple has paintings and carvings inside which give an ethereal look to the temple. Visitors from all over visit the place especially during the festival of Janmashtmi.
The temple comprises of the deity of Lord Krishna which is composed of black marble and the idol of Radha which is made up of white marble. The temple is massive and has a main building which is large and covered with an entrance which is constructed in Rajasthani style. Many God and Goddesses are present inside which make the temple all the more attractive and exquisite.
Dwarkadheesh Temple is the most visited temple in Mathura. Janmashtami is the most enthusiastically celebrated festival in the temple. Other festivals such as Diwali and Holi too are celebrated with sheer joy. It is located near the Yamuna river and is the most famous temple of Mathura. The temple has a platform built in the central courtyard which has three supporting pillars richly carved and a beautifully painted ceiling.
- Open Time: During Summers-
Morning- 6:30 AM - 10:30 AM,
Evening- 4:00 PM - 7:00 PM
- During Winters-
Morning- 6:30 AM - 10:30 AM,
Evening- 3:30 PM - 6:00 PM
- How to Reach Dwarkadheesh Temple
One can hire an autorickshaw or a taxi from any part of Mathura to reach the Dwarkadheesh Temple.
1. It is a beautiful temple and is one of the most famous places of Mathura. The best time to visit the place is from October to March.
2. Photography is not allowed inside the temple.
Multiple theerthams present here are well known as ghats with 25 of them present today in Mathura are related to Lord Krishna. It is believed that performance of certain rituals here can get rid one of all past wrongdoings and hence is visited by numerous devotees.
A visit to all 25 ensures a complete pilgrimage of Mathura.
5) Gita Mandir
True to its name, the Gita Mandir features inscriptions of the holy book in and around the surroundings of the temple. A magnificent idol of Lord Krishna is housed in this temple along with Lakshmi Narayana, Ram and Sita. Intricate carvings and paintings are seen within the temple premises.
6) Jama Masjid
The Jama Masjid was constructed in the year 1661 by Nabir Khan, the Governor of Aurangzeb. With its four minarets and mosaic plastering along with the marvelous carvings, this structure leaves one spell bound with its beauty.
- Open Time: All days of the week: 5:00 AM - 9:00 PM