Shrinathji Temple, Nathwara
The temple of shrinathji or Lord Krishna, belonging to the Vaishnav religion is located at Nathdwara, 48 kms. north of Udaipur. As thousands of tourists and pilgrims from all parts of the world pass the lofty mountains and serene lakes of Udaipur, it is impossible for them to resist visiting this important pilgrim centre.
In the temple, enshrined is a unique image of Lord Krishna, which has been sculptured from a single piece of black marble.
It is believed that during the reign of the Mughal emperor Aurangzeb. Lord Krishna's image was brought to Mewar from Mathura by Goswami Daoji and enshrined with complete vedic rites and tradition at Shrinathji by the ruler of Mewar.
One of the arms of the life size image is raised in a manner so as to give an impression of holding the Govardhan mountain. The other arm rests at the waist which seems not only a dance posture but also as if God is blessing the devotees.
In Shrinathji temple, worship (puja) is replaced by servitude (seva). The temple priests change the vestments and ornaments of Shrinathji daily with love and reverence. It is believed that he appears to his devotees in many forms: the divine child inspiring parental love, the flute playing good in the forests of Vrindavan luring maidens with the melody of his flute.
Places worth seeing in the temple include the Moti Mahal. Sudarshan Chakraraj, Dhwajaji, Kamal Chowk, Ratan Chowk, Mani Kotha and the temples of Shri Navnit Priyaji. The Shri Krishna storehouse has silver and golden mills.
Apart from that, the Shakghar milkboth and the outlets having roses, betel leaf, sweets and clothes as well as the gardens are worth a visit. The temple has three entrances. The first is through the red door at Chaupati from where the Govardhan worship place can be reached.
Surajpol is an entrance excludively for women and leads to Kamal Chowk through Singhpol. Various religious festivals are celebrated at the temple like Janmashtmi, Phooldol and Diwali. The annakootritual is famous worldwide where cooked rice is hurled at the devotees after the ceremony and is 'looted' by them. This important pilgrim centre is well connected by rail and road.