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Tourist Places To Visit In Khajuraho
Khajuraho, in MP, is known the world over for its heritage temples and its Dance Festival that is celebrated in February each year. Its monuments that are heritage sites under the UNESCO were actually temples at one time. These were all constructed by one king or the other from the Chandela dynasty between 900 AD and 1100 AD. There are therefore several tourist places to visit in Khajuraho. These places are now discussed.
Kandariya Mahadev Temple
The Kandariya Mahadeva Temple was built during the reign of King Vidyadhara who ruled between 1003 and 1035 AD. The main tower, which is the highest point of the temple symbolizes Mount Kailash and it is surrounded by more than 80 smaller spires and the entire building, which has a granite foundation, is made of sandstone. This temple is considered to be one of the finest examples of the temples from the point of view of status of preservation among all the temples constructed during India’s medieval period.
It is understood that King Vidyadhara built this temple to celebrate the success of the war with Mahmud Ghazni in 1019 and again in 1022. The construction took place in 1025-1050 AD.
Dedicated to Vaikuntha Vishnu, the Lakshman Temple is a 10th century Hindu temple that was built by King Yashovarman from the Chandela Dynasty whose reign was between 925 and 950AD. The temple complex was constructed on top of a high platform. The wall has windows with balconies which have very ornate balustrades. There are two rows of sculptures which include both divine figures and couples in erotic scenes. The lintel has the depiction of goddess Laxmi with Brahma and Vishnu on either sides.
The Dulhadev Temple in Khajuraho is dedicated to the god Shiva in the form of a lingam that has been deified in the sanctum sanctorum. The temple dated to between 1000 and 1150 AD is among the most beautiful shrines in the Khajuraho temples located in the Southern Group. This was the last shrine that was built in this wing and is also known as the Kunwar Math. Here, you can see some of the most beautiful carvings of Shiva and Parvati throughout the temple. There are some outstanding sculptures of divine beings or apsaras carved on the ceilings of the temple. Visitors may admire the high standard of craftsmanship that prevailed during the reign of the Chandela kings.
Devi Jagdamba Temple
The Devi Jagdamba Temple is among the 25 temples that exist now in Khajuraho, a World Heritage Site under the UNESCO. Built between 10th-12th centuries, this temple is in the north group of temples and among the most exquisitely carved temples in Khajuraho. It has some fine erotic carvings and was initially built as a temple for Lord Vishnu. The temple also has a stunning image of goddess Parvati. The body of the temple is encircled by three bands of carvings while within the sanctum sanctorum is a striking sculpture of the goddess ruling the universe. Visitors will surely admire this temple.
Khajuraho Dance Festival
The Khajuraho Dance Festival is organised by the Kala Parishad of MP. It is a 7-day festival of classical dances that is held each year in the month of February. The dances are all performed against a stunning backdrop of the temples of Khajuraho that are specially lit for the occasion. Visitors to Khajuraho are requested to make plans in such a way that they get to see at least some of these dances if not all of them. The dance performances are in styles that include Odissi, Kathak, Bharatnatyam, Kuchipudi and Kathakali as well as Manipuri and Chhaou among others. The show is totally free and most memorable.
Chaturbhuj temple, built in 1100 AD in the reign of King Yashovarman of the Chandela dynasty, is located about 3 km from the Eastern Group of temples and is well known for its architecture that is indeed most impressive. It is the only temple which does not have any erotic carvings on its walls. The shrine is dedicated to Lord Vishnu and houses his 9’ tall idol in his typical form where he has four hands. It is because of this form that the temple is known as Chaturbhuj.
State Museum of Tribal and Folk Art
If you love history you have to visit this State Museum, which is simply ideal for lovers of history. Showcased in this museum is an amazing collection of masterpieces that symbolize the rich culture of Chhattarpur region. There are folk paintings and more than 500 tribal antiques besides jewellery and masks as well as objects in metal, bamboo and terracotta. This visit will acquaint all with the traditions and customs of the tribal people from this region as well as the history of the culture of the state of MP. The museum is open on all days except government holidays and Mondays. The entrance fee is a nominal Rs. 10/.
The Raneh Falls, located in Chhatarpur district in MP is about 22 km from Khajuraho. It is a natural waterfall which is on the Ken River that forms a five kilometre long and about thirty metres deep canyon, made of pure granite in different shades of colours. You will find a series of waterfalls in this canyon, the larger ones running throughout the year while the smaller ones tend to appear only during the monsoon period. When you visit this waterfall you may also visit the Ken Gharial Sanctuary which is further down the waterfall.