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"Temples" Top 5 Page for this destination Khajuraho Things to Do Tip by illumina

Khajuraho Things to Do: 150 reviews and 361 photos


Khajuraho is one of the most popular tourist destinations in India, and the large group of medieval Hindu and Jain temples is the reason for this. They have been listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Khajuraho was the capital of the Chandela Rajputs, a Hindu dynasty that ruled this area of India between the 9th-13th centuries. The name Khajuraho comes from the Sanskrit word 'kharjur' meaning date palm - the town was originally named Khajuravatika (Bearer or Garden of Dates).

The myth goes that Hemvati, the beautiful daughter of a Brahmin priest, was seduced by the moon god, and gave birth to a son, Chandravarman. Bringing him up in the forest to hide from her 'shame', by the time he was 16 years old he could kill tigers or lions with his bare hands. He achieved a series of mighty victories and became king of the region, and built the series of temples to expunge his mother's 'guilt'. In reality, Nannuk (first quarter of 9th century) was the founder of the Chandela dynasty, and it was his successive descendants who had the temples constructed.

The temples were mostly built in one burst of activity between about 950-1050AD. There were originally about 85 of them, though today only around 22 remain. They are divided into three main groups - Western, Eastern and Southern. See following tips for descriptions of individual temples.

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  • Updated Apr 6, 2010
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