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Unveiling Local Treasures in Khajuraho


Khajuraho Temples

The temples of Khajuraho are truly a sight to behold and were built during the Chandela dynasty between 900 AD to 1130 AD.  These temples are famous for their architectural and sculptural glory depicting various aspects of life, from religion, art, meditation, spiritual teachings, farming, kinship,wrestling etc.

The Chandela's were also great patrons of performance arts and this is evident from the sculptural representation of musicians with various instruments and dancers in different poses.

A well-known part of these wondrous temples are the erotic sculptures embossed on the temple walls, which depict sections of the Kama Sutra.  These temples have found their place on the international radar and it was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The temples are divided into 3 distinct groups , the Western Group, the Eastern Group and the Southern Group and belong to 2 different religions - Hinduism and Jainism.

Kandariya Mahadev Temple

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The Kandariya Mahadev Temple is one of the oldest and biggest temple in the Western Group of temples of Khajuraho. It was Built around 1025 AD, it is renowned for its stunning architecture, intricate sculptures, and intricate carvings that depict various deities, celestial beings, and scenes from daily life.

The temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva and houses a Shiva Linga made out of pure marble.Kandariya means “CAVE” and Mahadev means “ Lord Shiva”.Hence, the temple structure represents celestial abode of Lord Shiva or Mount Kailash.  It showcases the Nagara-style architecture, characterized by its towering spire and intricately adorned exteriors. The Kandariya Mahadev Temple remains a masterpiece of medieval Indian art and a testament to the artistic and architectural prowess of the Chandela dynasty.

Lakshmana Temple

The Lakshmana Temple  is one of the most prominent and exquisite Hindu temples in the Western group of temples of Khajuraho.It was constructed around 930-950 AD by the Chandela King Lakshman Dev Barman (Yashovarman). This well - preserved attraction is dedicated to
Lord Vishnu.

The Lakshmana Temple showcases a blend of architectural styles,based on Panchayatana style which means one subsidiary temple at each corner and one principle temple in the center.  The temple's sanctum houses a three-headed standing idol of Lord Vishnu which is known as Vaikuntha Vishnu. The Lakshmana Temple is not only a testament to the artistic skills of the Chandela artisans but also a significant religious and historical site that attracts visitors from around the world.

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Chaturbhuj Temple

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Chattarbhuj Temple is situated in the Southern Group of Monuments in Khajuraho. This temple complex, built during the 12th century by the Chandela dynasty, is known for its distinctive architecture and sculptures.

The temple's name, "Chattarbhuj," translates to "one with four arms," which is an epithet for Lord Shiva . This is the only temple which is facing towards the west direction  .The temple's unique blend of Hindu architectural elements and the history of its transformation make it an interesting and historically significant site within the Khajuraho Group of Monuments

Please Note that entry to the temples is chargeable for both Indian and Foreign tourists. Kindly check with the ticket counter for the applicable fees.

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Sound & Light Show

Who doesn't love being told stories? We all do!  After exploring the temples, you can enjoy listening to and watching the spectacular light and sound show at the temple complex every evening.

The show brings history to life and tells the story of the birth of these ancient temples, detailing the kings and monarchs who began and supported the journey of its creation. This 50-minute show, narrated by veteran actor Mr. Amitabh Bachhan, amongst other celebrities, will serve as a memorable tour of the art, architecture, and sculptures of these temples.

Please Note that entry to the show is chargeable for both Indian and Foreign tourists. Kindly check with the ticket counter for the applicable fees.


Archaelogical Museum

ASI's Archaeological Museum of Khajuraho is located ahead of the Aadivart tribal museum on the same road. The primary collection of this museum consists of sculptures and antiquities from the Chandela Period when Khajuraho or Khajura-vahaka was the capital city of the great dynasty.

A number of well-preserved and well-carved sculptures are displayed in the five galleries of this museum. The Khajuraho group of temples were discovered by T. S. Burt in 1838, followed by extensive research by Alexander Cunnigham from 1852 to 1885. It is with the efforts of W E Jardine (then Political Agent of Bundelkhand), that the loose sculptures and scattered historical remains were collected from the ruined temples and preserved. This led to the establishment of the Jardine museum in 1910.

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The Archaeological Survey of India took over the Jardine Museum in 1952. Presently the Archaeological Museum houses most of these artifacts making them accessible to the public.

The entrance gate and verandah galleries at the museum display sculptures such as two seated lions on either side of the steps, a finely carved doorway, figures of Ganga and Yamuna, Nrittya Ganesh (dancing figure of Lord Ganesh), etc.

Another notable gallery, the Jain gallery contains Jain sculptures, in particular, Jain Sasana-Devi Manovega with her vahana, a horse on a pedestal, Goddess Ambika under a mango tree and one sculpture of Adinath.

Please Note that entry to the ASI Museum is chargeable for both Indian and Foreign tourists. Kindly check with the ticket counter for the applicable fees.

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Aadivart Tribal & Folk Museum

Adivart Tribal and Folk Art Museum is situated at a distance of 600 meters from the exit gate of Western Group of Temples.

Also known as Tribal Art Museum, it is an ideal place for history lovers. The museum houses a rich collection of tribal and folk art and artifacts and offers a brief history of custom and rituals of the different tribal communities of Madhya Pradesh highlighting their distinctive art, craft, music, dance, and lifestyle.

There are  7 cottages built by 7 prominent tribes of Madhya Pradesh, in the way they were built originally with cow dung, mud, earth and wood. Tribal artisans spent months working on each part of the cottage, detailing it with designs from their culture.

Please Note that entry to the show is chargeable for both Indian and Foreign tourists. Kindly check with the ticket counter for the applicable fees.


Khajuraho Dance Festival

The Khajuraho Dance Festival is an annual cultural event held in the town of Khajuraho, India from 20th February to 26th February. It  showcases a rich variety of classical Indian dance forms, including Bharatanatyam, Odissi, Kathak, Kuchipudi, Mohiniyattam, Odissi, Kuchipudi, Manipuri, Kathakali and recently, modern Indian dances.

The festival attracts renowned dancers, both national and international, who perform inside the premises of Khajuraho temples, known for their intricate erotic sculptures.

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The event not only celebrates the artistic heritage of India but also offers a platform for artists to showcase their talents and connect with a diverse audience. It has become a significant cultural event, highlighting the beauty and diversity of Indian classical dance traditions.

Since its inception in 1975, this tradition, celebrating the culture and art forms of India has been the most awaited event of the country. It is organized by the Department of Culture, ASI and assisted by Madhya Pradesh Tourism.

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