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2003 › Critics › Architecture & Lodging

Best Hindu Temple: Radha Madhav Dham

Best Hindu Temple: Radha Madhav Dham
PHOTO BY Jana Birchum

To non-Hindus traveling out to the Salt Lick, the large spire of Barsana Dham’s temple might resemble an enormous Christmas tree ornament. For the devoted, it represents the holy land of Braj in India and is said to invoke the same sense of devotion here as it does back home. Founded in 1990, the temple and ashram is the main U.S. center for Jagadguru Kripalu Parishat (née the International Society of Divine Love), attracting millions of visitors, encompassing more than 200 acres of gorgeous Texas Hill Country. The architecture of the temple is ornate; there are 84 columns and five levels in the building, covering more than 35,000 square feet. Barsana Dham hosts traditional Indian weddings, celebrations, retreats, kirtan (chanting), yoga and dance classes, and classes in Hindi. They also offer overnight accommodations and meals. With its vast gardens, streams, flora and fauna, and roaming peacocks, Barsana Dham is an inspiring, tranquil spot for cultivating belief in something larger than ourselves, no matter what the religious background.

Radha Madhav Dham
400 Barsana Rd., 512/288-7180

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