Friday, October 7, 2011


Khajuraho was a late addition to our trip, and we had few expectations, other than knowing it was a World Heritage site. It's nice to start with light expectations and then get a surprise. We arrived on the continuation of the flight we had taken from Delhi to Varanasi. Khajuraho is a small town in the countryside, 'only' about 25,000 people. As we arrived at the airport, women were working the plot of land between the building and the parking lot with hand tools, their bright saris gently lifting in the wind.

We stayed at a lovely new hotel, with a room looking out over a pretty pool and the distant temples. We quickly set off for the Western Group of temples.

The site contains 25 of the original 85 red sandstone temples in phenomenal shape. During the Chandela dynasty, who rules in the 10-12th century, this was their religious centre, but the rich and varied temples lapsed into obscurity until rediscovered by a British explorer in 1838.

The tall temples point to the sky, said to be resembling the peaks of the Himalayas, the red sandstone in stunning contrast to the blue sky. I was mesmerized by the beauty. When you get up close, you see rich and detailed carving. Very beautiful and realistic work covering every surface of the temple. Many carvings of daily life, military life, and what makes them so famous, erotic sculptures of various positions of the Kama Sutra. Amazing. That's what I'd read about and I thought this might be a place to have a few giggles, but I came away instead with a sense of awe with the beauty and majesty of this vast site.

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