Barsana is the eternal residence of Sri Radha. It is located around 52 Km from Mathura and around 120 Km from New Delhi.
The very name Barsana means "falling, scattering or spreading." The meaning of Barsana as explained by saints here is that mercy and karuna (compassion, love) of Srimat Radharani is spreading, falling or scattering here on everybody.
Radhastami or Appearance Day of Srimati Radharani is celebrated in Barsana every year in a very grand manner. Around half million devotees visit the Radharani Temple atop Vrishbhanu Garh Hill in Barsana on eve of Radhastami festival.
Barsana is the eternal home of Srimati Radharani. Barsana was led by mukhiya (leader) Vrishabhanu (Radharani's father). Radharani's mother's name is Kirtida.
Vrishabhanu Kaka and Kirtida Kaki were very happy on getting Radha as a child but she didn't open her eyes. It was on touch on little Krishna that Sri Radha opened Her eyes for the first time. Check the story of the appearance of Sri Radha here.
Barsana is actually four hills (parvat) which are none other than four heads of Brahma Ji. The four parvat (hills) are Vrishbhanu Garh, Dan Garh, Vilas Garh and Man Garh.
The weather in Barsana in extreme, both in summer as well as winter. Check the weather of Barsana and Vraj Bhumi region in different seasons of the year.
How to reach?
Vrindavan to Barsana
Auto: Take an auto from Vrindavan to Chatikara (10 rupees). From Chatikara, take an auto to Chata (30 rupees). At Chata, take an auto to Barsana (30 rupees).
Car: If you have your own car, just travel to Chata and take a left and follow this road to reach Barsana. Take a left turn after Chetak Academy (Do not go up on the overbridge after Chetak Academy).
New Delhi to Barsana
Follow the Delhi - Mathura Highway via Palwal - Kosi Kalan and take a right turn near Chata (use Google Maps to take the right turn).
Places to visit in Barsana
- Radharani Mandir: The Radharani Temple is the most popular temple in Barsaba and is actually the residence of Srimati Radharani. The view of Barsana from Radharani Mandir is spectacular. The darshan here is indeed a different experience altogether and you can feel the presence of Sri Radha by sincere prayers and remembrance. Holi here is a super awesome experience.
- Ras Mandir: This is one of the rasa-sthalis (the place where Krishna and Radharani celebrate the rasa festival). It is run by Man Mandir (by Ramesh Baba). There is free prasad (food) for devotees at Ras Mandir usually in morning and afternoon times.
Ras Mandap: It is a very confidential place located at Gehvarvan (near Ras Mandir) where Radharani, gopis and Krishna used to perform rasa-dance festival. This place is a confidential place of worship for raganuga devotees. Every evening from 5-7 PM, Ramesh Baba leads sankirtan and sings local folk songs in praise of Sri Radha and Sri Krishna while many little vrajvasi lali (girls) perform rasa dance. This is not an ordinary dance and is for the pleasure of Divine Couple.
- Maan Mandir: The Man Mandir is situated atop Mangarh Hill and it is the where Radharani got angry after Krishna didn't come to meet Her. There is a cave below which is the spot where Radharani goes into hiding and crying after getting angry. Ramesh Baba lives at Maan Mandir and it under his guidance that the majority of Barsana developed into what it is today.
- Chitra Sakhi Mandir: It is located in Chiksauli Gaon (Village) on way to Ras Mandir. Chitra Sakhi is one of asta sakhis, one amongst 8 principle gopis of Srimati Radharani.
- Kushal Bihari Mandir: Also called as Jaipur Mandir, Kushal Bihari Mandir was built by a king from Rajasthan. However, before shifting the deities from Radharani Mandir, Sri Radha came into the dream of the king and instructed him that She wants to stay at Radarani Mandir itself. Then onwards, a new deity of Radha Krishna was established here and worship was started. There is a pakoda shop just at the entrance here that sells really awesome pakodas!
- Mor Kutir: On the way from Ras Mandir to Kushal Bihari Mandir, Mor Kurti is situated atop Vilas Garh Hill. This is the place where Krishna and Radharani dance in the form of a peacock. Surdas, a blind saint had drawn the painting of Radha and Krishna dancing as peacocks after being empowered by it in his dream.
- Prem Sarovar: It is located around 800m from Barsana and the lake came into existence with a teardrop of Sri Radha and Krishna. They were together and yet feeling intense separation from each other. Tears started coming from Their eyes, and when the parrots started chanting their names, "Radha, Krishna" that they regained their consciousness, and tears came out of their eyes. That's how Prem Sarovar was formed.
Pili Pokhara: It is where Radharani washed Her turmeric applied by Yasodha Maiya. Whenever the boy's mother puts turmeric onto girls hands, it means that she has accepted the girl as her daughter-in-law. Once when Radharani had visited Nandgaon, Yasoda Maiya applied turmeric on Radhrani'a hands. Radharani thought extremely happy internally became shy externally and thought what would people in Barsana think after seeing Her turmeric, so while returning, she washed Her hands in PIli Pokara. Since then Pili Pokhara is yellow in colour.
Kirti Mandir (Rangeeli Mahal): It is a white marble temple established by Kripalu Maharaj. It is very famous for evening light decoration. Kripalu Maharaj also had established the Prem Mandir in Vrindavan.
Hotel in Barsana
There are a lot of hotels right in front of Kirti Mandir which provides good accommodation facilities for tourists. The hotel's owners in Barsana are very simple and humble vrajvasis and these hotels provide cheap yet good facilities for an overnight or longer stay.
Places to eat
There are many food stalls and local chat, samosa and street food shops all around Barsana that have really amazing food. Special mention for the pakoda at Kushal Bihari Mandir (Jaipur Mandir) atop Dan Garh Hill.
Devotees circumambulate Barsana in a 5 Km walk that usually starts from Ras Mandir (Gehvar Van), walking along Mor Kutir near Vilas Garh, Jaipur Mandir near Dan Garh, Radharani Mandir (atop Bhanugarh) and walk around from Chiksauli Gaon (Chitra Sakhi Mandir) back to Ras Mandir.
Circumambulating is one of anga (modes) of devotional life and helps in increasing prema-bhakti for Divine Couple Sri Radha and Sri Krishna.
- Ras Sankirtan and lecture at Ras Mandap every evening (5-7 PM) with Ramesh Baba Ji Maharaj
Night Sankirtana at 9 PM everyday at Priya Kunj Ashram (near Pili Pokhara) with Vinod Bihari Baba followed by Baba's Katha (Lecture) on vraj-bhakti
A lot of exalted saints live in Barsana. It's very difficult to understand them without their mercy (kripa).
Check this post on the inner confidential mood of vrajvasis who's blessings makes one advance super quickly in devotional life, and how to actually invoke their blessings right away from anywhere in the world.
Barsana (The eternal home of Gaudiya Acharyas)
- Bhakti Vinoda Thakur (Kamala Manjari)
- Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakur (Nayan Mani Manjari)
- Aindra Prabhu (in his nitya-eternal vraja swarup takes birth in Barsana as maid-servant of Radharani, as mentioned in his book)
The villages of principal gopis of Radharani is also very closely located around Barsana. Lalita Sakhi's village and birthplace Unchagaon is located just 1 km from Barsana. Sudevi Sakhi's village is hardly 1 Km from Unchagaon. Chitra Sakhi's village Chiksauli is located beside Vilas Garh Hill and on the way to Ras Mandir.
Ramesh Baba is most popular Rasika Vaishnav living in Vraj Bhumi currently. Baba shifted to Barsana 65 years ago and has inspired so many devotees and seekers to take to vraja-bhakti.
He also established the Man Mandir Trust, Ras Mandir which provides free prasadam to devotees, the Mata Ji Gaushala which has more than 50000 cows, educates local children and leads sankirtan daily at Ras Mandap every evening.
His presence and one glimpse is something which makes one just transform internally impulsively.
Owing to old age, he is unable to walk and is on a wheelchair yet he comes daily for sankirtan at Ras Mandap.
If one gets the kripa of entering the Ras Mandap, they will be transformed immediately, though very very few devotees who visit Barsana come here. It is a very confidential aspect of prema-rasa that not everybody has adhikar (eligibility) for unless chanting the holy names of Lord in the form of Hare Krishna Mahamantra.
Vinod Bihari Baba
Baba is a renowned Gaudiya Rasika Vaishnav and his lectures and kirtan are very deep. He has been in Vraj Bhumi from around 45 years and his lectures really help sincere seekers advance in bhakti.
He is very kind and his one glimpse makes one go deeper in spiritual life. He is very merciful and meets devotees with great warmth, though only at the night.
Baba lives at Priya Kunj Ashram near Pili Pokhara. Every night at 9 PM, he leads kirtan followed by a short katha (lecture) and prasadam (food).
Nearby places from Barsana
- Vrindavan: 45 Km
- Radha Kund: 21 Km
- Mathura: 52 Km
- Nandgaon: 6 Km
- Vrinda Kund: 7 Km
- Ter Kadamba: 7 Km
Nandgaon, Vrindavan Kund and Ter Kadamba are located around same place. From Barsana, Nandagaon is just 5-10 minute drive.
In Popular Media
There has been a serial RadhaKrishn being broadcasted on Star Bharat which has been beautifully portraying Barsana and Radharani. They have done good research and around 60% of the facts and story that they are showing is true. The point is that if something is watching it, watch it with the intention to remember Srimati Radharani and Krishna and not just view it from a TV serial perspective.
- Radhe Radhe Radhe Barasane Wali Radhe song is very popular in India throughout every nook and corner. It is in praise of Radharani and Barsana (Her eternal Home).
Jai Jai Shri Radhe!
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