Established by Swami Vivekanand is a Hindu monastery known as “Belur Matha”. This monastery renowned for fusing architectural motifs belonging to “Hinduism, Christianity and Islam” is situated in a town called Belur in the Howrah district. This matha or monastery is essentially a religious complex that comprises of temples devoted to Shri Ramakrishna, Sarada Devi, and Swami Vivekanand. In addition, this 40-acre complex also possesses a museum that contains scriptures and relics closely associated to the history of the Ramakrishna Mission and its matha.
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a. Best time to visit the Belur Matha
The ideal time to travel to this wonderful temple is in between October to March when the climate in the “City of Joy” i.e. Kolkata is usually very pleasant with, the temperature ranging a maximum of about 11 degrees Celsius to a minimum of about 9 Celsius degrees.
b. How to reach Belur Matha
Belur Math Map
1. By train:
The closest railway station to this temple is located in Howrah in Kolkata. The Howrah Railway Station is well connected to most of the major cities in the country.
2. By road:
If you intend to drive to this temple then the ideal starting points would be Bhubaneswar, Cuttack, Puri, Patna, and Kolkata.
- Via Bhubaneswar:
There is one route from Bhubaneswar to this matha, and it is via NH16.
- Via Cuttack:
There is one route from Cuttack to this matha, and it is via NH16.
- Via Puri:
There is one route from Puri to this matha, and it is via NH16.
- Via Patna:
There is one route from Patna to this matha, and it is via NH19.
- Via Kolkata:
There are two routes from Kolkata to this matha, and they are via Grand Trunk Road and via Barrackpore Trunk Road.
3. By air:
The Subhash Chandra Bose International Airport located in Kolkata is the closest airport to the temple. This airport located in Dumdum is well connected to major cities in the country as well as to major countries.
c. Religious significance of the Belur Matha
According to historical fact in January 1897 Swami Vivekananda and his group of followers mainly from the west arrived from Colombo in Sri Lanka to India. It was while Vivekananda was in India that he established two monasteries i.e. one in Belur and the other in Uttarakhand in the Champawat district known as Advaita Ashrama. The intention of setting up these monasteries being essentially to help spiritually inclined men to become “sannyasis” (i.e. a religious ascetic) for the Ramakrishna Mission that he had founded.