image_captiontop to bottom: Krishna Janmasthan at Mathura, Radha Rani Temple at Barsana, Prem Mandir at Vrindavan and Kusum Sarovar at Govardhan Hill.
subdivision_name🇮🇳 India
subdivision_name2Northern India
blank_info_sec1Braj Bhasha dialect of Hindi
seat_typeProposed capitals)
seatMathura, Agra
parts_typeProposed Districts
p1Mathura district
p2Agra district
p3Aligarh district
p4Ghaziabad district
p5Hathras district
p6Gautam Buddha Nagar district
p7Mainpuri district
p8Etah district
p9Kasganj district
p10Firozabad district
p11Bulandshahr district
p12Bharatpur district
p13Dholpur District
p14Palwal District
p15Faridabad District
p16Karauli District

Braj, also known as Vraj, Vraja, Brij or Brijbhumi, is a region in India on both sides of the Yamuna river with its centre at Mathura-Vrindavan in Uttar Pradesh state encompassing the area which also includes Palwal and Ballabhgarh in Haryana state, Bharatpur district in Rajasthan state and Morena District in Madhya Pradesh. Within Uttar Pradesh it is very well demarcated culturally, the area stretches from the Mathura, Aligarh, Agra, Hathras and districts up to the Farrukhabad, Mainpuri and Etah districts. Braj region is associated with Radha and Krishna who according to scriptures were born in Barsana and Mathura respectively. It is the main centre of Krishna circuit of Hindu pilgrimage.

It is located 150 km south of Delhi and 50 km northwest of Agra.


The term Braj is derived from the Sanskrit word vraja (व्रज). Vraja was first mentioned in Rigveda, and in Sanskrit it means a pasture, shelter or resort for cattle from Sanskrit term “vraj” which means “go” in English.

Braj pilgrimage circuits

Since this is a site associated with the Vedic era Lord Krishna and Mahabharata, it is an important place of pilgrimage for Hindus. It is one of 3 main pilgrimage sites related to Krishna circuit, namely 48 kos parikrama of Kurukshetra in Haryana state, Vraja Parikrama in Mathura in Uttar Pradesh state and Dwarka Parikrama (Dwarkadish yatra) at Dwarkadhish Temple in Gujarat state.

Braj Yatra circuit of pilgrimage was formally established by the 16th-century sadhus of vaishnava sampradaya with fixed routes, itinerary and rituals. The circuit covers is spread across 2500 km2 area with 84 kos) or 300 km long periphery extending 10 km to east and 50 km to north and west. Braj has two main types of pilgrimage circuits, the traditional longer Braj Yatra encompassing the whole circuit, and the other shorter significantly modified contemporary point-to-point pilgrimage to visit the main sites at Mathura, Vrindavan, Gokul, Govardhan. The former, longer traditional pilgrimage route, also includes additional sacred sites Nandgaon and Barsana with travel on foot.

See also

  • Regional
  • Braj language
  • Vajji, the ancient region of the Vṛji janapada that Bajjika evolved from
  • Religious
  • 48 kos parikrama of Kurukshetra
  • Dwarka
  • Hindu pilgrimage sites in India
  • Vedic era
  • King Kuru
  • Cemetery H culture
  • Painted Grey Ware culture
  • General
  • Kingdoms of Ancient India
  • Regions of Haryana
  • Regions of Uttar Pradesh
  • Regions of Uttar Pradesh

Further reading

  • Rupert Snell, The Hindi Classical Tradition: A Braj Bhasa Reader. Includes grammar, readings and translations, and a good glossary.