Vrindavana is 145 km (90 miles) south of Delhi and 55 km (30 miles) north of Agra, just off the Delhi-Agra Road. It is 14 km or a 25-minute auto-rickshaw ride from Mathura. It has a small-town type atmosphere with narrow streets and not much motor traffic. There are said to be over 5,000 temples in Vrindavana. This town is located within the forest of Vrindavana and is known as Pancakrosi Vrindavana.
“When Srila Sanatana Gosvami came to Vrindavana there were no temples. The city was lying like an open field. Sanatana Gosvami sat down on the banks of the Yamuna, and after some time he gradually constructed the first temple; then other temples were constructed, and now the city is full of temples, numbering over five-thousand.” “Of all the temples in Vrindavana, ninety percent belong to the Gaudiya Vaishnava sect, the followers of the teachings of Lord Caitanya Mahaprabhu and Nityananda, and seven are very famous.”
It is believed that Sati’s hair fell at Keshi Ghata, when Lord Siva was doing his dance of destruction, after Sati had burned herself alive. Lord Vishnu had cut up her body to stop Lord Siva from destroying the universe. Parts of her body fell at different places in India.
Yamuna River Ghatas
Many ghatas were built along the Yamuna. Over a period of many years the Yamuna has changed course, and many ghatas that originally used to be on the bank of the Yamuna are situated a good distance from the Yamuna now. This is true of Kaliya Ghata, Imli Tala, Akrura Ghata, etc. During the 17th and 18th centuries the Rajput kings built many ghatas along the Yamuna River out of red sandstone. The first ghata was built in the 16th century.
While staying in Chatikara it is said that Krishna and Balarama would come with the cowherd boys to Raman Reti daily to play. It is also said that Krishna and Radharani would meet here every night, before going to Vrindavana to enjoy Their pastimes. This area is located a few km from the main downtown area. The Krishna Balarama Temple is located in Raman Reti.
Raman Reti (Krishna-Balarama) Trees
There are two trees, about a six minutes walk from the ISKCON temple, on the parikrama path. These two intertwined trees are white and black. The black tree is said to represent Krishna and the white tree, Balarama. They are known as the Krishna-Balarama trees.
How To Get Here To get to these trees from the Krishna Balarama Temple you first walk over to the parikrama path, which is one road over from the temple, going away from the downtown. Once on the parikrama path, you walk about four minutes until you come to an open area on your right. The trees will then be on your right.
Kaliya Mardan Temple
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Click Here to go to Madana-Mohan Temple.
How To Get Here If you just walked down the steps from the old Madana-Mohan temple, you take a right and walk about 30 metres (100 ft). You make a right here and walk to the end of the road (about a minute). You make a left and the entrance to this garden is the first doorway on the right, after about 3m (10 ft).
There is the ancient Jugal Bihari Temple here. This temple is over 400 years old. Haridas, who was a Rajput and a disciple of the grandson of Hit Harivamsa, founded it. This temple is close to the Vrindavana parikrama path.
Sri Rupa Sanatana Gaudiya Math
His Holiness Narayana Maharaja in Kartika, 1988, founded this temple. It is dedicated to Rupa and Sanatana Gosvami. The Deities in the temple are left to right: Vrinda devi, Lord Caitanya, Sri Vinod Bihari (Krishna), Srimati Radharani and His Holiness Bhaktiprajnana Keshava Maharaja. On the left side of the altar is Sri Rupa Gosvami and on the right side is Sri Sanatana Gosvami. This temple is close to the entrance of Seva Kunja. On the walls in this temple are reliefs (dioramas) of pastimes of Lord Caitanya and Lord Krishna.
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Kishorivan (Hari Nikunj)
Kishorivan is considered like Seva Kunja and Nidhivana. Located here are a Rasa Mandal and the samadhi of Harirama Vyasa. The area of Kishorivan is about 1½ acres. It is next to Seva Kunja. The entrance to this kunja (forest grove) is near Loi Bazaar.
Radha Damodara Temple
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Radha Shyamsundar Temple
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Bankhandi Mahadev Shiva Temple
It is said that Sanatana Gosvami would regularly visit this Lord Siva temple while he stayed in Vrindavana.
How To Get Here It is a small temple that is passed just before you enter Loi Bazaar. It is at the intersection where the road turns off to the Banke Bihari temple, if you are coming from Loi Bazaar. It is a colorful temple with an elephant and clock on top of the temple.
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Shahji (Sahaji) Temple
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Radha Gopinatha Temple
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Madhu Pandit’s Samadhi
Madhu Pandita was a disciple of Gadadhara Pandit and an associate of the Six Gosvamis. This samadhi is near the Radha Gopinath temple.
How To Get Here After you leave the main road and walk about 100m to the doorway of the courtyard of the Radha Gopinath temple, you make a right, before entering the courtyard. You walk 80m, with the road bearing to the left. After making the left turn the samadhi is the small white building on your right. This samadhi is next to the entrance from Gopinatha Bazaar, within the outer compound of the Gopinath temple.
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Radha Gokulananda Temple
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This is one of the four oldest temples in Vrindavana. It was constructed in 1627, during the reign of the Mughal Emperor, Jahangir. The Deity of Krishna in this temple, Jugal Kishor, was installed by Hariram Vyas. Sri Madhava, a disciple of Madhavendra Puri, initiated him. This temple was abandoned, after the soldiers of Emperor Aurangzeb desecrated it in 1670. There is no worship done in this temple, but it is interesting architecturally.
How To Get Here This temple is near Keshi Ghata. This ancient temple is just behind the Dantsamaj (Tooth Samadhi) of Gadadhara Pandit. From the samadhi, you follow the road around to Keshi Ghata and this fairly large temple is on your left, after 30 seconds.
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Bilvamangala Thakura’s Samadhi
There is also a temple here. This samadhi is on the opposite side of the street and 50 metres north of the Deity of Amiya Nimai.
How To Get Here It is in Gopinatha Bazaar. The small building that the samadhi is in, is white and has two elephant heads above the doorway on both sides. There is a 25cm (10 inch) statue of Ganesh above the doorway.
Temple Timings The samadhi is open from 4.30 am to 12 noon and 4.30 to 9 pm.
Gopisvara Mahadeva Temple
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Dhira Samira Ghata
Radha and Krishna are said to enjoy pastimes in the gardens that were once here.
Dhira-samira means “the place where there is a gentle breeze.” It is said that at this place the wind moves very slowly, for the pleasure of Radha and Krishna.
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New Radha Gopal Temple
Because the soldiers of Aurangzeb desecrated the main temple, it is believed that worship cannot continue in that temple. Therefore this temple was established behind the original Govindaji temple and it contains the pratibhu Deities of Radha Govinda. The original Deities of Govinda were brought to Jaipur. The pratibhu Deities are considered to be the same as the originals.
How To Get There This temple is directly behind and slightly to the right of the Govindaji temple. To get here you go around the Govindaji temple and there is small road just behind the temple.
Temple Timings Darshan is from 7.30 to 10.30 am and 5.30 to 7.30 pm in the summer, and in the winter 8 to 11.30 am and 4.30 to 7.30 pm.
Sixty-four Samadhis (Chaousata Mahanta Samadhi Pitha)
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Katyayani Devi Temple
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It is accepted by the local people that Uddhava discussed Krishna with Vidura at this place. It is also said that Prayag Raja Tirtha (in Allahabad) took bathe here in the form of a black horse, to be purified. It is possible to bath here during the rainy season, but normally it is dry. Not many people come to this area of Vrindavana.
How To Get Here This place is close to Tekari Raj Ghata and the Rangji Temple.
Vaha (Vihar) Kund
Near Davanala Kund is Kalidhari garden, which is where Krishna is said to have come after swallowing the forest fire. In this garden is Vaha (Vihar) Kund.
The gopis are said to have crossed the Yamuna at this place, to get the benediction of Durvasa Muni, that they would always have the association of Krishna. The gopis cooked a sumptuous feast for Durvasa Muni. He was so pleased that he blessed them all, especially Radharani, that whatever they cooked would be like nectar and that whoever ate their cooking would have a long life, without disease. This ghata is a good distance from the Yamuna at the present time.
Adi Badri Ghata
It is said that Vyasadeva wrote the Tenth Canto of Srimad Bhagavatam at this place.
It is said that Krishna disguised himself as a boatman at this place and took the gopis across the Yamuna.
Sri Caitanya Visram Sthali
There is a banyan tree here under which Lord Caitanya is said to have sat. A tamala tree is growing from the trunk of the tree. The Jagannatha Deities here are said to have belonged to Murari Gupta.
About twelve hundred widows live at this temple. Each woman chants the names of God a fixed period of time each day. Usually Bengali widows stay here.
Delhi. You then turn right at the road after the petrol (gas) station, after about half a km. This temple is then about half a km down the road, all by itself. It is convenient to visit this temple on the way to Radha Kund or Varsana.
Radha Krishna Temple (Pagal Baba Ashram)
The beautiful white marble temple is dedicated to Radha and Krishna. On the different floors of the temple are Deities of several avataras of Vishnu, such as Lakshmi-Narayana, Vamana, and Sita-Rama. There is a great view of the surrounding area of Vrindavana and Mathura from the roof of this temple.
How To Get Here This temple is the large white marble temple that is on the left as you approach Vrindavana from Mathura on the main Mathura to Vrindavana road. Not far from this temple is Akrura Ghata.
The Gita Mandir is a large red sandstone temple that is halfway between Vrindavana and Mathura on the main Vrindavana to Mathura Road. The pious Birla family, who have built many Vishnu temples all over India, constructed it. The temple is dedicated to Lord Krishna in the mood of speaking the Bhagavad Gita to Arjuna on the battlefield of Kurukshetra. There is a pillar called the Gita Stambha in the temple courtyard that has all the verses of the Bhagavad Gita engraved on it.
Deoria Baba Ashram
Located across the Yamuna in a secluded area this ashram was where Deoria Baba lived in a hut located above the ground. For years Deoria Baba did not touch the ground. His two senior disciples now run the ashram and give classes and speak good English. To get to this ashram, you take a boat across the river at Keshi Ghat and then walk about 20 minutes to the right (south).