Goverdhan Parikrama & Banke Bihari ji Temple (Vrindavan)

Date of experience: 21 September 2019

Goverdhan Parikrama

The program was unplanned and we started all of a sudden.

Distance from mathura to goverdhan is about 26 KM. To perform Goverdhan Parikrama, while going to mathura from FBD/Delhi, you need to take right turn from goverdhan chowk. It is about 24 KM from goverdhan chowk to goverdhan. Goverdhan Parikrama starts from Daanghati temple.

Me and my wife at Daanghati temple

The total distance of complete parikrama is of 21 KM which is divided into two parts. First parikrama is called “Badi parikrama” which is of 12 KM and another one is called “Choti” parikrama which is of 9 KM. So total it comes to 21 KM, but actually it is of around 23 KM. Goverdhan village is situated at the centre of this whole parikrama.

Generally during summer, people do this parikrama in nights and during winter season it is performed during day. It takes approx 6 hours to complete entire parikrama if you are regular walker otherwise will take more. There is no any hard and fast rule on the duration. people also do only single parikrama in one time and another at some other time. so it all depends on your comforts.

Me and my wife started from Faridabad around 3 PM and reached Daanghati temple by around 7 PM. In Daanghati temple, there are no shoe racks and you have to leave your shoes outside un-attended. We just bought Prasad/flowers from near-by shops and headed to temple. It was not much crowd in Daanghati temple and we had a very peaceful darshan and offered milk to giriraj baba.

Before starting the parikrama, try to have as less luggage as possible with you. You can just start with only a water bottle with you. There are many shops on the way where eatables are available and that too on MRP. Many people do it with bare foot which is really tough but all strength comes out from within. Electric rickshaw and cycle rickshaw are also available to help people to perform parikrama if you not able to do it on foot or not willing to do it on foot.

Electric rickshaw generally takes 2-3 hours for entire parikrama and charges depends on season which can vary from 300 Rs to 500 Rs.

Just keep on chanting – Radhey..Krishna…, Radhey.. Krishna.. God is almighty and nobody can even do a single action without GOD wish.

After having darshan at Daanghati temple, we started parikrama on foot. After around 1 hour of starting the parikrama we had our dinner on the way and purchased some biscuits packets which are available on roadside vendors. These packets are meant to distribute among persons sitting on roads.

Types of Parikramas:

  1. Parikrama by foot– Being the easiest. this is common type of parikrama. People do this on bare foot or with footwear just by walking. Depending upon your physical fitness, this can be completed in around 6 hours. As you move clockwise, Goverdhan parvat is always at your right.
  2. Doodh Parikrama – This is done by having a pot of milk in your hand and while moving around the parvat, milk is dropped from pot continuously. The same can be achieved having a hole in milk pot and while do the parikrama.
  3. Sohni Seva Parikrama –Imagine a built-in system to make sure that a place that is visited and worshipped by so many cleans itself. In this you keep on cleaning the way while doing parikrama.
  4. Dandvat Parikrama – A lot of people also do “Dandavat” parikrama. Which is performed by completely lying with your stomach down on the ground with full strength position. A stone is put where your finger touch the ground. Then again stand up and start from that stone and repeat the entire cycle again and again. This is really really tough and all depends on your faith with GOD. This may take weeks or even months to complete the entire “Dandavat” parikrama. People stay on the place where they end for the day and depends on eatables provided by passer- by. The next day they start from the very same place on which they end the earlier day.
  5. Couple Dandvat Parikrama –This parikrama is done by husband and wife together. Alternate Dandvats is done by the husband and the wife. This reduces the effort spent by half.
  6. 108 Dandvat Parikrama –In this, the person carries 108 pebbles. He does 108 Dandvats at the same place before moving on. It may take years for one Parikrama to be done.

Govardhan parvat has great religious significance due to its association with Lord Krishna. Currently its height is about 25-metre and is a wide hill near Mathura Vrindavan in UP, India. This hill is also known as Giriraj which is about 8 KM in length. Lord Krishan, lifted this hill on his little finger for 7 days to protect Braj from horondous rain caused by Devraj Indra who had cursed the Braj for not pleasing him. it is believed that entire Goverdhan Parikrama  will grant all your wishes.

The way during the parikrama is well maintained and you hardly face any issue. During the way, there are some places where there is complete dark and you may need to use your mobile phone torches to cross that. During the Goverdhan Parikrama, you get a chance to have darshan in a number of temples which is really satisfied.

A lot of monkeys and cattle are round the way and monkeys may create menace with your belongings. We were eating ice-creams when suddenly we observed that we were surrounded by a lot of monkeys. They were attracted by our ice-creams (which we came to know later). The people around us advised us to throw our ice-creams to get rid of that blunder J

On the way you can have the darshan of manasi Ganga, Narada kund, Kusum Sarovar, Ratna Kund, Sankarshan Kund, Jati Pura.

Parikrama is quite safe during the year and round the clock. During any time (day or night), you easily get a lot companions. A lot of people keep on chanting Radhey..Radhey…

Mukharvind Maharaj – A small part of Giriraj parvat is exposed to public

Entire way is quite well marked for parikrama and passes by the village where you get a chance to have a look into villagers’ life. Parikrama should be started by having darshan of giriraj ji maharaj at daanghati temple. Badi parikrama is started from here. After talking around 9 KM, you get another temple “Mukharvind” where a tiny part of Goverdhan temple (giriraj GOD) is worshiped. Just after reaching “Mukharvind”, a heavy rain started so we decided to sit over there for considerable time on the foot of Giriraj maharaj.

Mukharvind Maharaj

From there you start for remaining parikrama and when it comes to end, on the right side you will get the way to another parikrama of 9 KM.

By the end of this 9 KM parikrama, you will get manasi ganga.

Way to Manasi ganga

Manasi Ganga is the largest lake or Kund in the central part of the Govardhan town. It is no different from river Ganga being manifested by the will (Manasi) of Lord Krishna.

It’s said that one who bathes in Ganga is freed from all his sins but one who takes bath in Manasi Ganga is not only freed from sins but also attains the purest devotion of Krishna.

About the origin of Manasi Ganga is said that, once Kansa sent a demon to kill Lord Krishna. The demon took the form of a calf and hides himself within in the cattle group of Lord Krishna.

My wife offering pooja at one of the Sarovar on the way

When Krishna realized this, he killed that demon. As he had killed the demon while he was in the form of a calf, his cowherd friends refused to play with him and advised him to go and have a bath in river Ganga to purify his body of the sin of killing a calf. Unwilling to leave Braj, Krishna remembered Ganga within his mind and to his will Ganga took the form of Manasi Ganga and started flowing near the foot of Govardhan hill. Krishna then took bath in sacred waters of Manasi Ganga and purified himself to the pleasure of his cowherd friends. According to other legend, Krishna manifested Manasi Ganga through his mind (Manasi) to the pleasure of his foster parents Nand and Yashoda after knowing their desire for bathing in river Ganga and their unwillingness to leave the land of Braj.

Me taking bath at Manasi ganga

At Manasi ganga ladies and gents section is maintained seperately. Water comes in well arranged water pipes in forms of water streams and people have holy bath. For ladies well covered bathrooms are maintained. After having bath, go to have darshan of Manasi ganga which is huge well decorated temple.

Me with my wife at Manasi Ganga Temple

Here you go :)

Bol Goverdhan Giriraj Maharaj ki Jai………. :)

Shri Banke Bihari temple – Vrindavan

From Goverdhan, you can go to Banke Bihari temple which is about 33 KM and hardly takes 1 hour.

This is said to be vrindavan’s oldest and is one of the holiest temple of lord krishan in india. Lord krishan poses in this temple in the form of child ie. Nand Gopal. This is situated in the narrow lanes you can observed a huge rush during the year. Take care of your belongings and bags are not allowed inside the temple. Lockers are also not available in the premises. No shoe racks are there and you will have to leave your shoes behind un-attended.

It was Sunday early morning when we visited to have darshan. We purchased peda’s parsad from the shop outside the temple complex. Many shops are there outside temple from where you can purchase Prasad, flowers, garlands etc. for lord . Darshan was very peaceful but a lot of rush was there.

Here also, you can see a lot of monkeys who always seems to hungry and snatch your belongings. You need to be very careful about your specs and Prasad otherwise those will be snatched by them for sure.

After having darshan we came out around 8 AM and thought to have some pate – Pooja. We went to “Shri banke Bihari kachouri Bhandar”. Initially only me and my wife only 2 customers were there but as soon kachouri was ready, a lot of rush started to gather. After having the kachouri, we came of know why a huge rush was there. Kachouri was indeed quite spicy, lip smacking and were ultimate to satisfy your taste buds.

Bol Banke bihari maharaj ki ……………. Jai………. :)

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