Mayapur – a spiritual place dedicated to Krishna
Mayapur is situated at the point of confluence of Ganges river and Jalangi river, near Nabdwip in West Bengal. Mayapur at 130 km distance from Kolkata, is right there on the world map because this is where the ISCKON headquarter is located. It’s considered a holy place as Chaitanya Mahaprabhu or Caitanya was born here on 18th Feb 1486.
Krishna as Chaitnya in Mayapur
Why millions of people throng this place from all over the globe? Because, it’s the birth place of Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. He was regarded as the manifestation of Krishna in his most compassionate form by Gaudiya Vaishvanism faith. He taught his followers how to attain perfection and fulfillment in life through Bhakti Yoga, simply means, loving devotion to God. He was a protagonist who showed devotees the way to follow holy Bhagwad Gita to attain proximity to Krishna. Chaitanaya Mahaprabhu’s real name was Vishambhar, from early age he preached Bhakti, the devotion to God. His teachings were followed closely and later in 16th century it became a ‘Bhakti’ movement or Hare Krishna Movement.
How to reach
Air- Nearest airport is Kolkata which is nearly 3 hours away from Mayapur. Flight
Train– From Kolkata trains are every hour and takes 2 to 3 hours to reach Nabdwip Dham
Road– Taxis and Bus travel services available.
Onward journey to Mayapur
From Nabadwip Dham station, rickshaws are available up to Mayapur Ghat, from there the boats are the medium to cross Ganga to reach Hular ghat of Mayapur.
Places to see in Mayapur
ISKCON’s Chandrodaya Mandir
Srila Prabhupada was the founder of International society for Krishna Consciousness or ISKCON. At his behest the holy figures of Radha-Madhav were installed in 1980 and then within six years in 1986 a huge well planned temple was built by his devotees. This ISCKON temple is famous shrine known as Prabhupada’s Samadhi Mandir, a magnificent memorial site with a museum that depicts different phases of his life. Big white spires of the temple are visible with its imposing magnificence. A bronze statue in classic sitting form of Srila Prabhupada is worshipped by the devotee. Lush green gardens are well maintained and panoramic. Outside walls are decorated with terra-cotta sculpting of Krishna’s various activities depicted in Srimad Bhagvatam. A large auditorium with stage, sound and lights is used for various seminars, for showing ISCKON films and festivals. ISCKON has a Goshala that houses more than 200 cows and given good care.
Chaitnaya Mahaprabhu’s holy Birth place Yogapeeth
In Mayapur on the banks of Holy Ganga is Chaitanya’s birthplace. The place was discovered in 19th century by Bhaktivinoda. He built an aesthetic temple with figures of Mahaprabhu along with his companions Lakshmipriya & Vishnupriya and Radha-Madhav. There is a neem tree in the courtyard that’s considered exact place where Mahaprabhu was born. He used to be called Nimai also for this reason. There are many other Gaudya Vaishnavanism faith organizations in Mayapur such as Chaitanya Gaudya Mission etc.
Across Ganga from Mayapur, Nabadwip is identified for its connection to Chaitnaya Mahaprabhu. Historically, Nabadwip was the capital of Sena dynasty king Lakshman Sena in 12th century. There are several religious places such as Dwadash Shiv temple built in 1835. Its exquisite floral design and architecture is its great feature. There are several other temples dedicated to Chaitanya Sonar Gouranga Temple and Sri Chaitanya Saraswat that has big inflow of pilgrims.
A historical city 15 km away from Mayapur has beautiful Cathedral church, an old palace of Raja Krishna Chandra, rulers here in 18th century. Now district headquarters of Nadia district, it is famous for its mud sculpting art, one can see and buy in Ghumi Putulpatti.
ISCKON has a guest house to stay, can be booked on net, few other temples have the facilities to stay. Hotels are available too.