UNESCO World Heritage Sites Of India

Suvarna Sadhu Banerjee
Suvarna Sadhu Banerjee
Travel Enthusiast.


(Declared UNESCO World Heritage site in 1986)

The temples of Khajuraho are perhaps the most visited tourist sites after the Taj Mahal in India. The proximity of this small village near Agra has made it a hot tourist destination. Today famous for its erotic sculptures, the temples of Khajuraho tell something more than the eroticism it portrays.

Built in the 10th century by the Chandela kings, the temples of Khajuraho are engulfed in mystery about the reason of their creation.The sculptures on these temples are a creed apart and excellence par beyond their imagination.

The temples of Khajuraho suggest a simple Hindu theory; to attain salvation one should cross the barriers of all that lures you. Purification of soul and mind is more important than that of body, to be nearer to God.

The Western Khjauraho temples have an entry fee pertaining to the law and standards of UNESCO and ASI. This small place is easily accessible by Train Road and have few flights from Delhi and Varanasi. Orchha, is another place which is a must visit when in Khajuraho, which is around 4 hours driving distance from Khajuraho. 



(Declared UNESCO World Heritage site in 1986)

On the banks of the River Tungabhadra, in the state of Karnataka, lies the huge city of Hampi. Once a great and strong kingdome of the Vijayanagara Empire, has some of the earliest and most beautiful temple monuments created. The empire which got ruined and burnt down by the invaders in a day, is spread over 16 square miles area in the Bellary distric and has around 1600 surviving monuments in the area. Intricate with carvings the area has temples, palaces, forts, memorial structures, mandapas and water baths. Intricately carved and beautuifully designed, these ruins of Hampi are mentioned as " Austere, grandoise site" by the UNESCO.

Once the capital of the Vijaynagara Empire, it was one of the most prosperous and the richest states of India in the 14th century. It was the second largest city, best for trade and markets which attracted many traders from persia and Portugal. Defeated by a coalition of Muslim sultanates; its capital was conquered, pillaged and destroyed by sultanate armies in 1565, leaving behind the beautiful city in ruins on the rocky terrain. Some of the magnificent structures in the rea are the Vitthala temple complex, the Elephant stable, the Lotus palace and the queen's bath. 

A nominal entry fee to visit all the monuments is levied and there are some batery vehicles which operate inside the area to travel in between the monuments, which are chargeable too. One can enjoy the Coracle boat rides too at a price to cross the river and visit the temples.

The nearest airport to reach Hampi is the Jindal Vijaynagar Airport, around 45 kms from the main town of Hampi. The nearest big city, is Hospeate, which can be reached by train and road from the major cities of India. One can take an excursion of 2 hours from Hampi to visit the other UNESCO world heritage sites of Badami Caves and the Pattadakkal temples. Most of the hotels are located in the town of Hospeate. But one can stay in luxury at the Evolve back resort or cheaper accommodations like Clarks Inn and some home stays. 



(Declared UNESCO World Heritage site in 1987)

In the Northern part of Karntaka, at about 2 hours drive from the fampus Hampi Ruins is Pattadakkal, another UNESCO world Heritage site. The Virupaksha temple here built in the early 8th century is considered to be a magnificent example of the architectiral peak in this area. Pattadakal is considered a Hindu holy city and within the heritage complex are eight temples dedicated to Shiva. The temples here are a remarkable combination of temples built by the Chalukya Dynasty in the 6th to the 8th century at Aihole, Badami and Pattadakal.

The nearest big city is Badami, which also has some wonderful caves which too are porposed to be under the UNESCO world heritage site. Hubli airport is near to he these monuments which is connected to biger cities of Hyderabad and Banaglore. 

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