Braj ki Holi is known for its thousands of colors, delicious irresistible dishes, mythological legends, thousand years of history, age-old traditions, unstoppable fun and stories of goodness prevailing over the evil. If you want to celebrate your Holi in a crazy way then we dare you to be a part of Braj ki Holi which is celebrated in Barsana, Vrindavan, and Braj in Mathura. Every year, Vrindavan, the birthplace of Lord Krishna draws a number of tourists to be part of the festivities.
No, don’t think you’ll get rid of this festival within a day or two but it is spread over a week or even more. During this festival, all the devotees of Lord Krishna and Radha visit this place from all over the world. They seem lost in a trance, wearing traditional dresses and enjoy the environment full of colors. They lose themselves in the songs of Holi which are purely in Braj language. So, are interested in celebrating this Holi like you have never done before? Here are 10 things you should know about Braj Ki Holi.
10 Things You Should Know About Braj Ki Holi
1. Joyful Lathmar Holi- Barsana and Nandgaon
Lord Krishna and his friends used to visit Barsana to play Holi with Radha and her friends. But then the women of the village chased them away. So, now men dress up like Lord Krishna and women dresses like Radha. Men from Nandgaon visit Barsana to play Holi with women whereas women playfully beat them with a wooden stick which is known as ‘Lathi’. From here we got the name ‘Lathmar Holi’. Don’t miss the grand festivities around Radha-Rani temple.
2. Bhang- Special cuisine of Holi
As every festival has something unique related to it, Holi has got Bhang. Trust me, there is no Holi without Bhang. While you are there, you are going to find yourself in the intoxicating atmosphere. There is no way in which you can resist yourself from having Bhand-Laced Thandai or Bhand-Spiked Laddoos.
3. Raas Leela at Gulal Kund- Perfect place to see love and romance
Near Govardhan mountain, there is a beautiful lake present, that is Gulal Kund. There should be no chance of missing the performance of local people in Krishna Leela. If you are visiting this place for the first time then you should capture the re-enactment scenes of Holi by the locals for the visitors. One can pay a visit here at any time during a year to see this happening, but if you want to catch all the festive fervor then Holi is just the right time.
4. Aggressive Huranga at Dauji Temple
Huranga is a very aggressive form of Holi. Almost 500 years back when Dauji Temple was established then the temple’s courtyard came alive when a man was beaten by women. Traditional families having more than 3,000 family members participate in this event and the rest is allowed only to witness it. Women beat the men up and during the process they even strip up their upper clothing. Nothing is offensive as everything is done in a festive spirit.
5. Holi with Lord Krishna at Bankey Bihari Temple
This is the time and yes this is the place where all your past experiences of Holi does not matter anymore. You are definitely going to forget everything while you are standing here lost in the crowd. Lord Krishna dressed all in white is brought closer to the people so that they can play Holi. Devotees and priests splashes colored water, gulal and showers flowers on everyone present there. Also, everything else fades away when music and bhajans fill the air in the compound.
6. Widows Holi- Vrindavan
As we all know that widows lead a very difficult life. But this day brings happiness for everyone. While long before, widows were strictly prohibited from playing with colors but now this tradition is broken by them. Even though they are still clad in white sarees but to enjoy this vibrant festival they smear each other’s faces with colors.
7. Celebrations at Dwarkadhish Temple
The place in Mathura where the biggest celebration of Holi takes place is Dwarkadhish Temple. 10 am is the time when a huge crowd enters the gate of the temple just to play Holi. Moreover, everybody’s feet dance with the beats of dhol. Women play Holi inside the temple. If you want to see priests making bhang then you can even head towards Vishram Ghat.
8. Phoolon ki Holi- Gulal Kund
Gulal Kund is located near Govardhan mountain where you can witness Raas Leela during Holi. Localities enact the scenes of Holi with colors and water but what is rare and unique is celebrating Holi with flowers. So, here you will get an opportunity to celebrate Phoolon Ki Holi.
9. Mathura Holi Procession
After you are done with festivities in Vrindavan, a colorful, as well as the joyful procession, takes place along the streets of Mathura. This procession takes places from Vishram Ghat to Holi Gate. Between these two landmarks, numerous colors of the festival can be enjoyed. The popular key attractions that you are going to find during this procession are that vehicles are decorated with flowers and children dress up like Radha-Krishna. Holika Dahan waits at the Holi Gate while the end of the procession takes place.
10. Dhulandi Holi
Out of many reasons why Dhulandi is celebrated, one of the most important reasons is to welcome Spring season and bid a goodbye to the winter season. But this is not the only reason. According to the legend, after Lord Krishna drank the breastmilk of demon his skin turned into a blue color. After this, he became really upset as he thought that nobody would play with him including Radha. Then his mother, Yashoda consoled and told him that he can color Radha’s face in whichever color he wants. Since then Holi is celebrated with full enthusiasm in Braj.