Are you ready for a trip to Khajuraho? This UNESCO World Heritage Site is located in Madhya Pradesh and is known for its stunning temples adorned with erotic and sensuous carvings.
Yes, you read that right – erotic and sensuous carvings! But before you start thinking that this is some kind of a red-light district, let me tell you that it is actually a brilliant example of Indian architecture and culture from the medieval period.
The temple complex in Khajuraho is grouped into two categories based on their orientation- Western Group of Temples and Eastern Group of Temples. The Western group is more famous out of the two, and it houses the largest temple, the Kandariya Mahadeo Temple, which is dedicated to the glory of Lord Shiva. The temple complex originally had 85 temples and caves, but plunderers managed to reduce the number to 25. However, the remaining temples are still standing strong and are a testimony to the resilience of the people who built them.
Now, let’s talk about the elephant in the room – the erotic sculptures. Some sculptures are bound to make you cringe, some will make you awe at the raw art, some will disappoint you, and some will leave you in wonder. The Chandela rulers originally built these temples to represent love and lust in their purest forms. Some theorists believed that the sculptures were used as forms of sex education, while others suggest that they were symbols for “good luck.” However, one thing is for sure – they are a prominent reason for the huge influx of tourists to Khajuraho.
But don’t worry, the sculptures are not the only thing that Khajuraho has to offer. You can begin your trip by taking a stroll in the local markets and collecting souvenirs for your loved ones. You can spend the evening by attending the light and sound show at the Western Group of Temples. The show explains all of the history and myths related to the temple complex and is a great way to learn more about the place.
On the second day, you can dedicate your time to exploring the main temple complex. The Western Group of Temples is a rectangular complex and houses some magnificent temples bound to charm you. You can also visit the museum at the far end of the temple complex. Next, you can visit the Eastern Group of Temples, which is a kilometer away from the western group and has the old village of Khajuraho. It is a whitewashed plain village with one large red-orange statue within. The image is the Lord Hanuman, believed to be the oldest image found in the whole of Khajuraho and is still worshipped with a lot of faith.
So, are you ready for a trip to Khajuraho? Come and witness the innocent form of love depicted in the carvings, and leave your lust and worldly pleasures behind before entering the temples, which in turn is a metaphor for “moksha” (Hindu theory of salvation).