A UNESCO world Heritage site in central India, Khajuraho is a famous tourist and archaeological site known for its sculptured temples dedicated to Shiva, Vishnu, and Jain patriarchs. Khajuraho extended over 21 sq. km and contained about 85 temples built by multiple rulers from about 950 to 1050. In 1838 a British army captain, TS Burt, employed by the Asiatic Society in Calcutta, came upon information that led him to the rediscovery of the complex of temples in the jungle in Khajuraho.
Of the 85 original temples-most constructed of hard river sandstone-about 20 are still reasonably well preserved. Both internally and externally the temples are richly carved with excellent sculptures that are frequently sensual and, at times, sexually explicit. The temples are divided into three complexes-the western is the largest and best known, containing the magnificent Shaivite temple Kandariya Mahadev, a 31m high agglomeration of porches and turrets culminating in a spire.