Vaishnavism is one of the major sect within the broader Vedic or Hindu spiritual culture. In Bengal, Vaishnavism is known as Gaudiya Vaishnavism or Chaitanya Vaishnavism which was a Hindu religious movement inspired by Chaitanya Mahaprabhu in 16th century in Indian subcontinent. ChaitanyaMahaprabhu rejuvenated the culture of Krishna devotion. So a large number of Vaishnava temples are seen in this region. Here’s a list of top 10 Hindu Vaishnava temples in Bangladesh.
Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu Temple
Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu Temple is the ancestral residence of Chaitanya Deva, Dhaka Dhakshin, Sylhet. This Vaishnava temple is one of the most prefered Hindu tourist spots.
It is a five hundred year old temple and it is famous for its architectural and religious atmosphere. It is said that on one Sunday in the month of Chaitra Mahaprabhu came from Navadwip to visit his ancestral residence. So an annual Baruni Mela sits here throughout the month of Chaitra.
Kheturi Temple is located in Godagari, Rajshahi. Kheturi is the birth place of Narottam Dasa Thakur, one of the prominent followers of Chaitanya Mahaprabhu.
He established the Chaitanya idol here in 1582 and made his devotion under a tree named Tamal at his residence. On the occasion of the birth anniversary of Narottama Dasa Thakur, Narottama Purnima festival is held in Kheturi Temple Complex annually.
Shri Shri Brahma Haridasa Thakur Ashram
Shri Shri Brahma Haridasa Thakur Ashram is located in Benapole, Jashore. Brahma Haridasa Thakur was an eternal associate of Chaitanya Mahaprabhu.
Though being born of a Muslim family, Haridasa widely propagated that the chanting of Krishna’s holy names to be the supreme spiritual practice. The Madhabi plant under which Haridasa Thakur stayed and chanted the holy name of Lord Krishna millions of time daily exists over here till this day. This temple complex is a great attraction to the Vaishnava devotees of home and abroad.
Kantajew Temple is is located in Kaharol upazila, Dinajpur. Kantajew Temple is one of the most magnificent religious edifices belonging to the 18th century.
Maharaja Prannath of Dinajpur began its construction in 1722 and his adopted son Maharaja Ramnath completed it in 1752 AD. Dedicated to Lord Krishna and his wife Rukmini, Kantajew Temple is one of the greatest examples of terracotta architecture in Bangladesh. Ras festival is one the most important festivals of Kantajew temple.
Pancharatna Govinda Temple
Pancharatna Govinda Temple is situated in Puthia, Rajshahi. Pancharatna Govinda Temple of Puthia was erected in mid-nineteenth century by the zamindars of Puthia.
The temple is dedicated to Lord Krishna, as the Puthia royal family were converted to Vaishnavism. This is a Krishna shrine and this grand temple has the architectural feature of five ratnas or spires.It is square in shape with elaborate terracotta designs.
Comilla Jagannatha Temple
Jagannatha Temple, Comilla is an old Temple. This temple is dedicated to the Hindu God, Jagannatha. It dates back to the early 18th century and was built by Ratna Manikya, who was the king of Tripura.
Jagannatha Temple, Comilla is one of the oldest temples of Comilla district. International Society for Krishna Consciousness maintains the temple now. The temple is also called Sateroratna Mandir or seventeen-jewel temple. The seventeen jewels are the towers that originally crowned the structure but have been damaged: eight on the first floor, eight on the second, and one more in the centre.
Dhamrai Jagannatha Rath Temple
The temple for Dhamrai Jagannatha Rath is located in Dhamrai, Dhaka. The Rath Yatra in Dhamrai is one of the most important festivals for the Hindu community of Bangladesh.
The Rath Yatra in Dhamrai started in 1672. The three storied old Rath was 60 ft high and 45 ft wide and it had 32 wheels. It was burnt down during the Liberation War of Bangladesh. After the independence of Bangladesh a small Rath was constructed to continue the tradition. In 2010, a 3 storied Rath was constructed. This new Rath has 15 wheels and is 27ft x 27ft. On the occasion of annual Rath Yatra festival, the journey of Dhamrai Rath starts from Madhabbari Temple and ends at Gopenagar Temple.
Handial Jagannatha Temple
Handial Jagannatha Temple is a very old temple whch is situated in Chatmohor, Pabna. It is a brickbuilt temple and the front wall of the temple has some terracotta.
The temple was reconstructed by someone named Bhavani Proshad during 1590. But scholars are assuming that the temple was built even another 100 years before from that time. Another two newly temples are being constructed at the both side of the small sized old temple.
Swamibag Ashram Temple
Swamibag Ashram Temple was built by Gopendra Mohan Basak, a renowned Zamindar of Dhaka city in 1899. It is an ISKCON temple in Dhaka. Then it was a Shiva temple. Around the year 2000, Swamibag
Ashram was further developed as a Vaishnava temple. Since then International Society for Krishna Consciousness is maintaining the temple. Krishna Janmashtami, Rama Navami, Holi, Ratha Yatra etc Vaishnava festivals are celebrated here annually.
Shri Rup Sanaataan Smriti Tirtha
Shri Rup Sanatan Smriti Tirtha is also an ISKCON temple located in Abhaynagar, Jashore. Shri Rup Sanaataan Smriti Tirtha is one of the beautiful Hindu temples in Bangladesh.
International Society for Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON) built this temple in1985 naming after Rup and Sanatan, two disciples of Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. In 1999, the current large temple was built replacing the previous smaller one. Lord Krishna along with some other deities are worshipped here according to the schedule of the temple authority. A beautiful Parikrama temple is also seen near the main gate of the temple complex.