This was a short car trip that i took last August. I will go again in a couple of weeks.
Vrindavan is about two hours from Delhi, and is a good place to go if you are interested in temples, and in the mythology of Krishna. The highway is rather good, so driving there is definitely not a bad option at all.
We left early in the morning, and started off with a lot of energy and vigour! We stopped at a little roadside eatery for some tea, and I ordered some buttered toast, greedy chap that I am. The fact is, that I love this stuff. The only thing I detest these days, is that they give you tea in these awful plastic or paper cups, and that just takes all the charm away. Plastic cups are bad for the environment anyway, so it does not help if you put up solar plants and then have plastic cups that go into landfills!
The town is really quite awful actually. So is Ayodhya, the birthplace of Rama. Both the main Gods (avtaars of Vishnu), Ram and Krishna, were born in towns that are awful and dirty. We are a strange nation. It does not stop people from driving like maniacs and running their cars into ditches!
Priests abound, and the ones on the tractor looked decidedly thuggish!
The main temple – or, one of the more famous ones – is the Banki Behari Temple, which had closed down by the time that we got there. We were taken for a walk into a little wooed glen by the banks of the river, said to be the homes of the little nymphets who loved and served Krishna. The tricky part is letting these guides take you into temples, because you always end up with a priest who performs a ceremony, and then asks you to fork out money. That happened to us, and we managed to bargain the priests down a bit, by saying we did not want this ceremony or that.
The town is also home to a lot of widows, largely from Bengal, who sit there and beg. It's a sad testimony that, in this town of temples, you have women who beg. I would have thought that the temples would do some really good work, by giving the women work to do. But, no. This does not happen.
The river was almost dry. Sad, because I remember this to be a wonderful river.
We could not find a decent restaurant to have lunch, so if you do want to eat, get a good tuck in the hotel you stay in!
We shall be back there in a few weeks, and we have booked a room. Use booking.com. I have found them to be pretty good so far!