Khajuraho | Attraction Guides | History Hit


Khajuraho, Madhya Pradesh, India

About Khajuraho

Once the capital city of the Chandela Dynasty, today Khajuraho is best known for its exceptional temples which are considered to be among the best examples of medieval Indian architecture.

The Khajuraho temples were largely constructed between 950AD and 1050AD and actually represent two separate religions, with some being Hindu temples while the others are Jain temples.

The temples are probably best known for their erotic art, however, this decoration is often shown out of context and in fact the decorative friezes depict all aspects of life both secular and spiritual.

The Chandela Dynasty ended with the coming of the Mughals; however, the relative isolation of Khajuraho meant that many of the temples escaped destruction.

Rediscovered in 1838 by British army captain TS Burt, he noted of the amorous decorations that: "The sculptor had at times allowed his subject to grow a little warmer than there was any absolute necessity for his doing."

Of the 85 original Khajuraho temples, 22 survive today – these are split into three main groups. The western group of temples is best known and includes the famous Kandariya Mahadev temple as well as the granite Chaunsat Yogini temple. Other Khajuraho temples in the western group include Chitragupta, Vishwanath, Varaha, Matangeswara and Nandi.

An impressive and popular sound and light show takes place at the western temples in Hindi and English every night – the English show starts at 6.30pm while the Hindi show is at 7.40pm.

The remaining Khajuraho temples form the south and east groups and include important sites such as the temples of Parswanath, Adinatha, Vamana and Chaturbhuj.

The Khajuraho archaeological museum can be found near the western temples and contains artefacts, sculptures and friezes dating back to the 10th and 12th centuries.