Khajuraho temples are a World Heritage site. The epochal creations are an unsurpassed Indian contribution to human civilisation. These temples completed a thousand years of their existence in 1999. Khajuraho temples were built in around 1000 AD by Chandravarman, the founder of Chandela dynasty.
Legend has it that the emperor was sired by none other than the Moon God. Hemwati, daughter of a brahmin priest, was seduced by the moon god when she was bathing in a lake by the forest. Unable to face the scorn of the society, she took refuge in the dense forests of Central India. There she gave birth to her love child. She was her son's guru, his guide.
Once, it is said, Chandravarman had a dream where his mother instructed him to reveal human passions to the world and thus prove their emptiness. Inspired thus, the king decided to build the temples that would depict different faces of desire.
Built in the north Indian Nagara style the stones were given form to human emotion in the form of spiritual and physical love. The basic ground plan of the Khajuraho temples followed a typical Hindu temple architecture that consisted of four compartments
- An entrance porch (ardhamandap)
- The vestibule (antarala)
- The sanctum sanctorum (garbhagriha).
In some of the large temples an extra Mandap with lateral transepts is added for size and splendorThe temples are divided into three groups ( Main attractions of Khajuraho ) :
How to Reach
- The Western Group
It is the largest, compact and centrally located group in Khajuraho, includes some of the most prominent monuments, built by the Chandela rulers. The Lakshmana Temple, the Matangesvara Temple and the Varaha Temple form one complex and the Visvanatha and Nandi temples are not far from this complex. These temples form an irregular row running north-south, while the Chitragupta, Jagadambi and the Kandariya Mahadeva temples form a more regular, parallel row, about a furlong to their west.
- The Eastern Group
It comprises of five detached sub-groups in and around the present village of Khajuraho. The eastern group of monuments, situated in close proximity to the Khajuraho village, includes three Brahmanical temples known as Brahma, Vamana and Javari and three Jain temples, the Ghantai, Adinath and Parsvanath.
- The Southern Group
It is the most distant one comprising of two main monuments near and across the Khudarnala. The southern group of monuments comprises the Duladeo and the Chaturbhuja temples. The Duladeo is about a kilometre south of the Khajuraho village and half a mile southwest of the Jain group of temples. The Chaturbhuja Temple is a mile further south and is close to the Khajuraho airpor
Khajuraho has an airport that links it with Delhi, Agra, Varanasi and Kathmandu. The nearest railheads are Mahoba (64 km), Harpalpur (94 km), Jhansi (175 km) and Satna (117km). Bus services link Khajuraho with all major towns.