India is truly an alluring place. We go abroad for vacations and explore new things, but little did I realize that, India is a place with a glut of cultures and places to explore. Any corners of India you go to, there is a unique history attached to it. Having said that, a must visit place for everyone is “Brindavan”. According to the Hindu Mythology; this is a place where Lord Krishna spent his childhood. Nandagaon was a place where, Vasudev, the actual father of Lord Krishna, left him at Nanda Bhavan, at the time when His Uncle “Kans” wanted to kill the child as the child was a threat to his life
But before I actually narrate my experience, let me tell you, a week before this trip. I had a severe pain on my legs. It was so severe that I couldn’t even walk. I cried a lot. Not because of the pain but, because, I thought I would not be able to go for this trip. I prayed to God, that somehow, this pain should subside. However, the doctor gave me some medicines and o my surprise, All the pain was gone a day before my trip. My happiness knew no bounds. So here I was all set to explore the flamboyant place and the history attached to it.
My journey to this place has been an experience for a lifetime
Day 1: It’s always an experience if you travel in groups. We started with a group of 40 people. The platform was Jam packed due to the Festival and there was hardly any place to stand. In the Midst of the rush, we boarded the train. We had to reach Mathura in order to Reach Brindavan. Mathura is the main junction for every train. Any train which starts from Delhi, has to pass through this station. So, we started at 4.30 pm and reached Mathura around 6.30 AM. From there Brindavan is 15 kms away.
Mathura, as we all know, Is the birth place of Lord Krishna. Lord Krishna was born in a jail in Mathura. They say, due to the threat that “Kans” had from this child. Kans locked Devaki and Vasudev (Actual parents of Lord Krishna) in the jail, So that as soon as the child is born, Kans will kill it, which he has been doing for the previous seven infants born before Lord Krishna. But they say the Gods helped the parents save this miracle child, as this child was itself a God, as per the Hindu Mythology.
SO we reached our destination and stayed in the Dharmashala. The room was quite descent and homely and the water was salty. You go to any place in Brindavan you will get hard water. So we had a bath and got ready and went to the ISCON (International society for Krishna consciousness) Temple. We had a blissful time in the temple. It is so peaceful that you already feel peace of mind and relaxed. How I wish I could spend my whole life here. Anyways after spending some quality time there, we went back to our rooms had dinner and went to sleep, for next day was going to be even more exciting. Thinking about the temple, I don’t know when I was fast asleep. I don’t remember when the last time I had such a sound sleep.
Day2: Next day we got up early in the morning and went for an “Aarti which is called the “Mangala Aarti”. Aarti is an offering to Lord Krishna. And it is performed with grandeur. You can hear everyone chant and dance on “Hare Rama Hare Krishna” and to hear that is really an experience of life. Each and every person there is in a trance of devotion. As if they are talking to the God and always a smile on their face, so peaceful and divine. Then on the very same day we planned to go to a place called “Barsana”, where, they say, Radha was raised. So after breakfast we started for this place by 11.00 am. As soon as we reached there, we attended the Spiritual speech and The Guru told us the importance of this place.
The actual place where Radha was born was “Raval Dhaam”, where the demons used to attack the innocent villagers a lot and that was quite poignant and because Radha’s parents didn’t want to lose their only child, they moved to “Barsana” and lived there since.
We stayed there till 1.30 pm. Post which off we went to the “Vrinda Dhaam”, which is a temple of Goddess “Tulsi”. We had lunch there, though the food wasn’t very good. But, we were already too hungry to complain about the food.
After that we went to “Nanda Bhavan” Where they say Lord Krishna spent his childhood. And already mentioned above this is the place where Lord Krishna was left in a palace in the midnight. After exploring the place, we were on our way back to Brindavan to our Dharmashala. We reached back around 7.30 pm. already tired to the core, we had dinner and off we went to sleep.
Day 3: Next day, we got up at 3.30 AM for the “Mangala Aarti” in the temple. We used to gather together post Aarti. Our Next plan of action was to visit all the temples in Brindavan. It was almost 13 kms and we have to go by walk. On the way there were lot of monkeys, they used to snatch the handbags and anything which they see in our hands. And we have to give the monkeys something to eat only then they return back our stuff.
Brindavan is place where there are lot of temples. And each and every temple has a story attached to it. Anyways, after the whole Brindavan visit, we were hungry to the core. The best part of the place is anywhere you go to eat, they don’t put onions in any of the food items and people there are very particular about that. Post lunch we got back to our room, rested for some time and then again at 4.30 pm, we went to “Shyam Sundar Nidhi Van”. It’s a garden where you see the trees are entangled as a couple, one black and one white. And you can’t figure out which leaf belongs to which tree, they are so much hooked with each other. And you feel as if couples are embracing each other and are so much in love. And the best part is, they say, not even a single leaf in this garden falls, or dries even in the spring. So the scenic view itself looks extravagant. The garden is closed by 7.30 pm and people are not allowed to stay after that.
After this we went to “Radha Damodar” Temple Stayed there for quite some time. Post which we went to the ISCON Temple Canteen to eat something, but there was lot of rush. It was the death Anniversary of Prabhupada, The founder Of ISCON. Since the canteen was overcrowded, we decided to go out and eat post which we went for some local shopping. This day was quite exhausting and as soon as we reached our rooms, we were tired to the core and so we slept like a baby.
Day 4: Our next plan of action was to visit “Govardhan Parvat”.
They say, there was a time, when due to heavy rains half of the Brindavan went homeless due to the floods. And they didn’t have a place to save themselves from this natural calamity. There was a hill near the river, which they say, Lord Krishna Held and lifted with his little finger to save the people from the calamity caused by the rain Gods.
So we woke up at 4.00 am, had a bath, and gathered at ISCON temple. Waiting for everyone was a real pain, because, we never used to go as per the schedule. And when you are going with 40 people, it’s mundane that not all are as prompt and punctual. So, we were already running 1 hour late. We reached there by 7.00 am. This is the place where we had to start the Parikrama (rotating). While walking, it started drizzling. But because we have already started, didn’t feel like stopping. On the way, we came across a pond called “Kusum kund”, where they say Radha used to have bath. Kusum means Flower and as per the myth, Radha used to pluck the flowers from the trees and some of the flowers fell in the pond and since then it’s named so. No one is allowed to get into that pond. It’s quite deep you see. From outside, it doesn’t look like, but they say, if anyone gets into that pond, then they are gone permanently.
Then we came across “Manas Ganga”, the actual hill starts from here. From there you can see the pond. And the view of the pond was worth watching. It looked marvellous. So we started our Yatra (Journey) to the Govardhan Parvat. We were walking and walking but could not see the Parvat so far. On our way we did some small shopping. On the way, again we came across “Indra Kund”, which again is a pond. You see lot of ponds on the way .There were lot of monkeys there as well. You have to be very careful with your belongings, because you never know from where they come and snatch things from you, Anyways; we could now see the hill from far away which was our destination. It looked quite small from a distance, but it is humongous hill.
The hill holds the surrounding of 24 kms, its huge and one can’t imagine how Lord Krishna can lift it with his little finger. Different corners have a different name. From the point where the hill starts is called”Mukharavind”. Near that hill, there are small restaurants. We had lunch and post which, we started our journey again. The whole pathway had sand all over and you feel relaxed walking on this soft sand. For 3 kms we walked on that sand and then we reached a small village. We had to cross these small villages in order to reach the main hill. You again come across two ponds called ”Shyam kund” and “Radha Kund”, which they say ,anyone who visits this hill has to perform some rituals or else the whole trip would be incomplete. These two ponds are in either sides of the hill. Like a guard to the hill. Anyways, we finished our rituals and by 5.00 pm we reached near our bus and waited for everyone to gather. After which we boarded the bus and back we were to ISCON temple by 6.30 pm, had something to eat and back we were to our rooms.
Day 5: Mathura is a place where Lord Krishna was born, so we started around 8.00 am next day to visit all the places in Mathura. First we reached the Jail, where Lord Krishna was born. It was Humongous. We spent quite some time there and then we came out. Next we went to a place called “Ramana Reti”, it is sand and they say lord Krishna used to play on the sand with his friends. The sand was so soft and you would actually want to play with it for the rest of your life. It was real fun. We played for hours together and felt like a child there.
There are small huts there, where all the yogis (They are people who stay away from the so called World and they don’t have a family and they dedicate their life to God) stay. All the huts are of the same shape and stands in a circle. After walking so much the previous day, playing on the sand was like a pain killer. All the pain and exertion vanished altogether.
Next we went to “Raval Dhaam”, Near the Yamuna River. This is a place where Radha was born. After spending some time, we reached back to ISCON around 6.30 pm and had lunch. And then went for shopping and attended the Aarti and came back to room and had a refreshing bath. Next day was our return, so we packed our stuff and slept.
Day 6: Next day we got up at 2.30 am and went to The ISCON to attend the Last Aarti. Loaded our luggage in the bus and off we went to the railways station.
It was a week’s trip and the whole trip was an ecstasy. I feel lucky enough to explore this and I thought should definitely share my experience with everyone. An experience of lifetime, you feel you are reliving the time Lord Krishna was there and gawking at the beauty of Radha- Krishna’s revelri. People are blessed to have experienced the playful time of Lord Krishna. All in all a truly amazing experience and A must visit place for all.