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If you are taking a break from the hectic work and planning to explore the beauty of Rajasthan do not miss out on Nathdwara. It is Rajasthan’s ‘temple town’. It will enchant you with its breathtaking landscape, the silhouette of the Aravalli range and the beautiful incarnations of Lord Krishna. You will not only feel the adventure of cutting across one of India’s most tourist friendly states but also the trip will make you fall in love with travel. De-stress your nerves with the sunshine on the fortress walls, and feel the warmth of the sun.

Location of Nathdwara

Nathdwara is located in the Rajsamand district on the banks of the Banas River. Nathdwara stands at a distance of 48 kilometres from the city of Udaipur. Nathdwara has the climatic conditions of a typical Rajasthan city and is predominantly arid. The rugged beauty of Rajasthan is what attracts travellers. Life in a desert is not the same as that in the plains or the mountains.

How to Reach Nathdwara

Nathdwara is at a distance of only 48 kilometres on the north eastern side of Udaipur so it is an easy travel by road or rail. The nearest rail station is Mavli Junction that is at a distance of 28 kilometres of Nathdwara. Recently, the broad gauge line has been extended from Mavli to Maniana that is a small junction in between Mavli and Nathdwara. The nearest airport is the Maharana Pratap Airport at Udaipur which is at a distance of 56 kilometres from Nathdwara. So basically if you want to reach Nathdwara, you have to cross Udaipur at any cost.

History of Nathdwara

Nathdwara has a lot to do with Lord Krishna. The name itself means something close to ‘a path to the Lord’. For many centuries this city is thriving on many beliefs of its own and many principles that have become a part of its breath and blood. It is said that this place was chosen by Lord Krishna himself. When the idol of the Lord was being shifted from the temple of Vrindavan to escape the plunder of the religious fanatic emperor Aurangzeb, the wheels of the bullock cart got stuck in the soil and didn’t move after hours of effort. Then the priest who was accompanying the group said that the Lord wants to stay here. Then the Srinathji temple was built under the supervision and rule of the then ruler Maharana Raj Singh of Mewar.

Tourist Attractions of Nathdwara

Nathdwara has always been a very tourist friendly place. Thousands of devotees pay a visit every year to worship Lord Krishna at the Srinathji temple. And there are millions of foreign tourists who visit the place in search of the tradition, culture and rich heritage. Rajasthan is royal from its forts to its artisans. It has something about it which is very delicately traditional. Nathdwara is considered as one of the central places of the worship of Lord Krishna, who is the central deity of the Pushtimarg sect of the Vaishnavas.

The Srinathji Temple

The word Nathdwara means the path to the Lord. So it would literally mean the path that leads to Srinathji that is Krishna. This shrine was built in the 17th Century and myth says that the temple was constructed exactly on the spot that was identified Holy by the Lord himself. Since Emperor Aurangzeb was a very staunch person by mentality and he was so intolerant towards other religions that the idol of Lord Krishna had to be secretly transferred from Vrindavan to this place to escape his destructive rage. When the wheels of the bullock cart could not be moved further from this spot, the priest understood that Lord Krishna wanted to stay here. So this temple was built and the idol was installed here. The then king of Mewar, Maharana Raj Singh helped with the construction of the Srinathji temple. This temple is also known as the ‘haveli of Srinathji’ meaning the home of the Lord.

The most auspicious days of the year are Holi and Janmashtami. Thousands of people throng the roads and play with colours. Sweets are distributed from the temple. Pichwai paintings are a very famous art of the place. Paintings depicting various ‘raas lilas’ of Lord Krishna are on displayed in excessive gold colour and people throng in the market to buy them.

The Artisans of Nathdwara

The ‘Pichwai painting’ belongs to the Mewar school art and is very unique style of painting by Rajasthani painters. Most of the paintings centre on Lord Krishna’s life. He is painted in his usual inscrutable self and these paintings have excess use of the colour golden. In most of the paintings Lord Krishna is seen holding up the gigantic Gobardhan Mountain. Krishna is the main theme of the paintings because this is the own place of the Lord. Most of the people are devotees of Lord Krishna and the most interesting thing to notice is how the women worship the Lord. Krishna is worshipped as a son and some women worship him as if he is present in front of their eyes.

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