Vishwanatha Temple, Khajuraho - Timings, History, Best Time to Visit

Photo Credit: Flickr

Distance (From Khajuraho Bus Stand): 1 Kms

Trip Duration (Including Travel): 30 Mins

Place Location: Inside Western Group Of Temples Complex

Transportation Options: Walk/Trek

Travel Tips: Timings & Entry Fee may change without any prior notice.

At a distance of 500 m from Kandariya Mahadev Temple and 1 km from Khajuraho Bus Stand, Vishwanatha Temple is a Hindu temple located among the Western Group of Khajuraho Monuments, a UNESCO World Heritage site in Madhya Pradesh. It is one of the most beautiful temples in Khajuraho and also among the best places to experience Khajuraho Tourism.

The temple is dedicated to Shiva, who is also known as Vishwanatha, meaning 'Lord of the Universe'. The temple is believed to have been commissioned by the Chandela king Dhanga, and was probably completed in 999 CE or 1002 CE. Its architectural style is similar to that of Lakshmana and Kandariya Mahadev Temples. It features several sculptures of various deities, apsaras, couples making love, and mythical creatures.

Vishwanath Temple is one of the architectural marvels of the Khajuraho Temple complex. Stands on a raised platform, the temple comprises an entrance porch, sanctum, mandapa, maha-mandapa and vestibule. The sanctum is enclosed by an ambulatory flanked with transepts. The mandapa and the porch have pyramidal roofs while the sanctuary is covered by a tower with projections and miniature tower-like elements. Adding beauty to the shrine, images of lions and elephants can be seen on the southern as well as northern steps of the temple.

The sanctum of the temple houses the beautiful marble Shivalinga. Apart from the main deity, the temple is adorned with the idol of Lord Brahma and a 6 feet high Nandi bull, which is seated on top of a wide platform. The temple also has a long inscription stating that Dhangadeva who installed an emerald linga at the temple. The temple was then known as the Marakateshvara, the Lord of the Emerald Linga. This precious linga was missing in 1864, when Cunningham visited the temple. The architect, according to the inscription, was Sutradhara Chhichchha, who was well versed in the architectural tradition of Vishwakarma.

Originally the Vishwanatha Temple was panchayatana style but now only two survive. Graceful apsaras decorate the pilasters and the sanctum wall of the temple. There are three meticulously sculptured bands of equal sizes carved on the exterior wall of the temple, which enhance the charm and beauty of this huge temple. The images on the basement showcase the carvings of Virabhadra, Lord Ganesha and seven Mothers. It is also famed for featuring the most proportionate sculptures of apsaras and couples in erotic poses.

Complex Timings: 6 AM - 5 PM

Complex Entry Fee: Rs. 30 for Indians & Rs. 500 for Foreigners