About Iskcon Temple Bangalore
Located in the Rajaji Nagar in Bangalore, and a venture of the International Society of Krishna Consciousness, ISKCON Temple in Bangalore is a shrine to Lord Krishna.
This splendid architecture was first erected by Sri Madhu Pandit Das and inaugurated in the year 1997 by the then President of India, Shankar Dayal Sharma.
It houses a number of prayer halls, dedicated to Sri Sri Radha Krishnachandra, Sri Sri Krishna Balarama, Sri Sri Nitai Gauranga, Sri Srinivasa Govinda and Sri Prahlada Narasimha.
Apart from being a shrine to the Lord, ISKCON Bangalore is also a cultural hubbub of multiple dimensions. It has a lecture hall of its own, which holds daily lectures delivered by devotees on the Srimad Bhagavatam.
It also has an amphitheatre, in which a number of events are held, such as cultural fests, dance and music programmes, educational conferences and so on.
The ISKCON Temple in Bangalore also conducts a number of festivals across the year, inviting pilgrims and devotees to it in all seasons. Rama Navami, Akshaya Tritiya, Sri Sri Krishna Balarama Rath Yatra are only a few of them.
Being located on top of a hill that is far removed from any source of drinking groundwater, the temple provides drinking water to its visitors from tankers transported all the way from the ground area.
It is also well guarded by well-trained security personnel, who monitor the area all the time.
The temple also has a gift shop of its own, known as Matchless Gifts, selling aromatic incense and other devotional products. These items are manufactured from natural products, and any profit gained is donated to charitable organizations.
History of Iskcon Temple:
The International Society for Krishna Consciousness was initiated in the year 1976 by Krishna devotees from across the world. The ISKCON Temple in Bangalore was first established in 1998 under the Karnataka Societies Registration Act, 1960.
The goals of this society are derived from the Seven Purposes of ISKCON as stated by Srila Prabhupada. Initially, the temple was operating from a rented house in Bangalore.
It was around the year 1987 when the temple was moved to the grounds, on Hare Temple Road, which was then an empty "kharab land" (wasteland).
To make this land more befitting of housing the splendid temple, Sri Madhu Pandit Das, a qualified engineer who was then the President of the ISKCON Bangalore, conceptualized a beautiful temple of splendid architecture, which he then built along with Sri Jagat Chandra Dasa, an architect himself.
The construction of the temple began in 1990, and around 600 skilled artisans were employed for the purpose.
The construction finally ended in the year 1997. On the same year, the Temple was inaugurated by the ninth President of India- Shankar Dayal Sharma.
Architecture of Iskcon Temple:
The ISKCON Temple at Bangalore is known for its unique and glorious architecture.
The splendid thought and artwork that went behind the construction of this magnificent structure displays a striking amalgamation of glass and gopuram, which then becomes symbolic of the blending of traditional values with modern aesthetics.
The temple also features a 17-metre tall flag-post plated entirely in gold. as well as a gold plated shikara, which is 8.5 metres high.
The vast premises of ISKCON Bangalore, along with the rolling green lawns that dominate the outer area, also houses a lecture hall, an exhibition hall, a Vedic Museum showcasing a plethora of ancient artefacts and cultural tokens, as well as an indoor theatre which shows Vedic films from time to time.
Apart from these, the temple also has separate prayer halls dedicated to Sri Sri Radha Krishnachandra, Sri Sri Krishna Balarama, Sri Sri Nitai Gauranga, Sri Srinivasa Govinda and Sri Prahlada Narasimha.
The neo-classical architecture that characterizes the temple boasts of elaborate stone carvings along the walls and the doors. The main shrine to Krishna, known as the Rajagopuram, boasts of beautifully crafted archways and splendid water fountains.
Festivals at Iskcon Bangalore:
Shri Vaikuntha Ekadashi: The Ekadashi that occurs in the month of Margashirsha (December – January) during the fortnight of waxing moon is known as Vaikuntha Ekadashi. On this day, devotees from all over the country unite at the temple to remember the Supreme Lord by chanting his name and singing hymns to his praise.
Sri Nityananda Trayodashi: Nityananda Trayodashi is the day on which Lord Balaram, in the form of Sri Nrityananda, was said to have appeared to Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu and helped him spread the teachings of Lord Krishna among the masses.
On this day, devotees fast for the entire day and pray to the Lord for spiritual strength. Then they celebrate the breaking of the fast in the evening with kirtans and the 'Pallaki Utsav' commemorated in the Lord's name.
Sri Gaura Purnima: Sri Gaura Purnima is the day associated with the appearance of Shri Krishna on Earth in the figure of Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu.
The celebration of the day begins in the evening with the Pallakki Utsav, conducted with the accompaniment of the Hare Sankirtana.
Sri Krishna Janmashtami: Janmashtami is celebrated over the weekend at the ISKCON Temple, and is flanked by thousands of devotees during the season. The celebration begins sharp at the stroke of midnight and continues well into the morning.
Delicacies of 108 different types are prepared and offered to the deity, then distributed among pilgrims and devotees as Prasad.
How to Reach Iskcon Temple Bangalore
To reach ISKCON Temple, Bangalore from the Kempegowda International Airport in Bangalore, one can take a direct bus to here. There are a number of buses traversing this route- 80, 80A, 80B, 80E, 80F, 80G, 252F.
One must then get off at the Mahalakshmi Layout Entrance bus stop, which is two kilometres away from the temple, and make the short walk to the destination. Alternatively, one can take a taxi or a cab to the temple.
Best Time to Visit Iskcon Temple Bangalore
The best time to visit ISKCON Temple, Bangalore is during the winter months, between November to February. During this time, the temperature remains relatively low. Humidity is much less compared to the summer or monsoon months, and there are hardly any showers during this time.
In order to maximize one’s experience at the temple, it is better to visit during the Arti hours. The experience of celebrating Janmashtami at the temple is also a must-have.
The celebrations of Janmashtami is held here in a very grand manner, and the temple becomes a popular pilgrimage spot for devotees around the world during this time.
What Not to Miss at Iskcon Temple Bangalore
Activities at Iskcon Bangalore:
Cultural Education: The Cultural Education Wing of ISKCON aims at teaching moral values and life skills into children through culture-related activities.
There are a number of culture-centric activities and initiatives taken at the temple specifically for children.
One of them is the Krishna Contest, a writing-based competitive exam held for students of all classes on Krishna Consciousness topics. Another activity held here is the Children's Theatre Workshop, open to children between the ages of 4 to 15.
Youth Programs: Established in 1997, the FOLK (Friends of Lord Krishna) Wing of ISKCON organizes educational and cultural activities for the youth of the state. Apart from the classroom-teaching endeavours held over the weekend, the youngsters are also allowed to engage in music, dance and other talent-related activities.
The highly interactive sessions are conducted by experienced faculty staff who have dedicated their lives to spiritual pursuits for over 20 years.
Krishnaraya: Krishnaraya is a home-based spiritual rejuvenation programme held at various centres across the city of Bangalore. The programme seeks to educate common people across the city about the principles of Bhakti Yogi on the instructions of Lord Krishna.
The Krishnaraya meetings include the singing of kirtans in praise of the Lord and discussion of Lord Krishna's philosophy.
Cow Protection: Under the Cow Protection programme at the ISKCON Temple, a number of cows are housed within the temple premises and allowed to roam around its lawns. The temple has a gaushala of its own, where the cows are kept, bathed, and tended to.
The milk from these cows is offered to the Lord and also used for cooking at the temple.
Yuga Dharma: The Yuga Dharma programme conducts multiple activities under its wing, such as the Chanter's Club, the Harinam Festival, or the Hare Krishna Flash Mob.
The programme is basically focused on chanting and other activities that help spread the teachings and principles of Lord Krishna.
Other Essential Information About Iskcon Temple Bangalore
Address: Hare Krishna Hill, Chord Rd, Rajajinagar, Bengaluru, Karnataka 560010
- Everyday Morning
4:30 am to 5:00 am
- Monday to Friday:
7:15 am to 1:00 pm
4:15 pm to 8:15 pm
- Saturdays, Sundays & Public Holidays:
7:15 am to 8:15 pm
Price: There is no entry fee required to enter the Temple.
Restaurants Near Iskcon Bangalore:
Brew and Barbeque - Microbrewery Pub: Housed on the 11th floor of the Trifecta Adatto Building, Brew and Barbeque is a perfect hangout place for families and groups of friends alike. This budget-friendly eatery prides in its Indian and German options, along with its range of beverages.
The pub remains open till late at night, and the menu boasts of Vegan and vegetarian options as well.
24/7: Housed within the Lalit Ashok Hotel, 24/7 prides in its array of Indian delights. The restaurant is open to the public as well as those residing at the hotel.
Apart from its indoor seating area, the restaurant has outdoor seating options along with an open pool as well. 24/7 remains open round the clock and is especially popular for its breakfast options.
Sea Rock Family Restaurant and Bar: Located only a stone's throw away from ISKCON Bangalore, Sea Rock Family Restaurant and Bar prides in its variety of seafood options. The restaurant boasts of a multi-cuisine fare made out of the freshest catch made off the coast of Karnataka.
It is especially known for its South Indian fish recipes and serves alcoholic beverages as well.
Chowmein Family Restaurant: Chowmein Family Restaurant is a pocket-friendly eatery popular especially among youngsters in the city. The restaurant offers a brilliant rendition of desi Chinese cuisine, along with North Indian varieties and rolls as well.
The restaurant is located about 0.2 kilometres from the temple and is a perfect choice if one is looking for budget-friendly options.
Tips for visiting Iskcon Bangalore:
1. The use of cameras is prohibited within the temple premises, even against an extra charge.
2. The consumption of intoxicants- alcohol, cigarettes, tobacco, bidi- is strictly banned within the temple premises.
3.Remove all footwear before entering the temple premises.
4. Make sure not to litter the premises.
5. Although there is no strict dress code, it is better to dress conservatively while visiting the temple.
6. Make sure to find out the timings of the daily aarti sessions at the temple to maximize your experience.