Things to Do in MathuraMathura is a name synonymous with Brajbhoomi, the land where Lord Krishna was born and spent his youth. This is evident with many hamlets and temples you will find around the place in which you will hear the soothing sound of a flute played by bal gopal, as he was known in his childhood. A visit to this city will fill you with spirituality and give you much needed calmness, not seen in other cities.
The nearest airport from Mathura which is about 60 kms is located at Kheria in Agra. A taxi can be arranged with the hotel or by calling up the taxi companies in Vrindavan. This would need to be done a day in advance for a Vrindavan taxi. Railways is another viable mode of transport, especially preferred by majority of visitors. People from with in the state and nearby can also use their personal transport to reach the place. Also, numerous buses are provided by the Uttar Pradesh State Road Transport Corporation.
Summers is not an ideal time to visit Mathura as the temperature is as high as 44 deg C. The winters is an ideal time to visit this city as the average temperature stays at 8 deg C and you can easily roam around the place.
Sightseeing in Mathura
Being a spiritual place Mathura is filled with religious associations. An ideal day starts with a visit to the temples which is followed with a boat trip to enjoy the serene view of the crowded ghats. It is concluded by witnessing the aarti being performed on the riverfront. There are 25 ghats which run along the Yamuna river and it is not possible to visit all of them, but the Vishram ghat is the most important. The ghat gets the name from the legend stating “This is the place where Lord Krishna rested (vishram) after killing his uncle Kans. The Dwarkadhish temple is another place one must go to. It is said to be a new temple although it was established 150 years ago, so you can imagine the history engulfed in this city. The Gita temple is nearby and it has the whole Bhagvad Gita inscribed on its walls.
Krishna Janma Bhoomi, the most visited place and the one that defines the city is a must see. The complex consists of a cell and a magnificent temple which holds the idol of Shri Krishna and Radha. The temple will have a soothing effect even on an atheist. Don’t be surprised to see Military personnel around you as the temple is adjacent to the popular Jama Masjid. The land has been a cause of tension among the Hindu and Muslim community for the past many decades now. Also, if you are fond of history you must not miss Mathura’s Archaeological Museum which houses rare sculptures from the Buddha and Kushana Period.
Festivals and Events in Mathura
Mathura is famous for its joyous celebration of Holi, which falls during the months of February and March. In the month of August falls the chaurasi kos parikrama which is the auspicious time to tour around the city. If you are here in the month of September or October your eyes are in for a feast. You will have the opportunity of a lifetime to see the bets enactment of Ramayan unfold in front of your eyes, Ramleela.
Shopping in Mathura
Mathura being a holy city you are bound to be surrounded by peddlers. But you can find many shopping places around the Dwarkadheesh temple at the Naya bazar and Tilak Dwar. The Kesharia Peda' is something to be relished without thinking twice! 'Khurchan' is another product made of milk and a speciality of the holy town. 'Ghee' prepared here is pure and exudes a strong irresistible aroma. Also make sure you carry a bottle of water with you as walking in this city is really tiresome and you will need it when you gulp on the sweets.
If you are a foreigner and you wish to taste the best from India, Mathura is your place. The chaat, sweets and peda, which is sweet meat prepared from boiled milk. Vegetarians can fill up at the Bhojanalaya vegetarian adjacent to the Sri Krishna Janmasthan is known for its lip-smacking vegetarian delicacy. Brijraj is the preferred place among many to taste snacks and south Indian dishes. Brijwasi Mithai Wala is highly recommended for filling up your stomach with sweets as it is the best you can get anywhere in India.