This stunning statue of a bathing lady was standing in a park near the Khajuraho bus stand. click to enlarge
The Khajuraho temples do not contain sexual or erotic art inside the temple or near the deities; however, some external carvings bear erotic art. Also, some of the temples that have two layers of walls have small erotic carvings on the outside of the inner wall. There are many interpretations of the erotic carvings. They portray that, for seeing the deity, one must leave his or her sexual desires outside the temple. They also show that divinity, such as the deities of the temples, is pure like the atman, which is not affected by sexual desires and other characteristics of the physical body. It has been suggested that these suggest tantric sexual practices. Meanwhile, the external curvature and carvings of the temples depict humans, human bodies, and the changes that occur in human bodies, as well as facts of life. Some 10% of the carvings contain sexual themes; those reportedly do not show deities, they show sexual activities between people. The rest depict the everyday life of the common Indian of the time when the carvings were made, and of various activities of other beings. For example, those depictions show women putting on makeup, musicians, potters, farmers, and other folks. Those mundane scenes are all at some distance from the temple deities. A common misconception is that, since the old structures with carvings in Khajuraho are temples, the carvings depict sex between deities. (source: Wikipedia. Most photos by D and that’s not me.)
Old Jain temple in Khajuraho
Man at work: near Jain temple
A sculptor at a souvenior shop near jain temple
This stunning statue of the bathing lady was standing in a park near the Khajuraho bus stand.
The Swiss-owned Raja Cafe at Zero Point in Khajuraho not only offers excellent food (we tried Thali and that was excellent) but also nice rooftop view of the main temple complex (Western group)
At the rooftop of Raja Cafe, Khajuraho
World famous erotic carvings that are scattered all over the walls of the temples make Khajuraho seem larger than what it actually is. The town is deceptively small and can be accessed by an easy bicycle ride
Bicycling is an easy way to hop from one temple group to another and explore surrounding villages in Khajuraho
Carrying a bottle of water and guide book always helps when you are traveling
Everyone wants to caputre the carvings, sculptures and statues in Khajuraho
It’s quite a task, as evident in this pic, to photograph erotic carvings and sculptures of Khajuraho’s Western temple group. Inside the Laxman temple
Bus on way to Satna stopped at Panna. We got time to have some chai and snacks
Finally, I relented. He is giving me a head massage right at Dashashwamedh Ghat
You have to be a local or an expert haggler to survive in Varanasi. If not, a rickshaw-wallah will sell you right there, on the street as you stand, to another rickshaw-wallah! Almost all tourists have to go through sometime torturous and unending offers of all kinds from touts, wannabe guides and rickshaw/autowallahs. Those offers include shaking hands with them, to let them massage you right on the busy ghats, to tip them for nothing significant and to go with them around the city. The moment they realize you are not from the city, they are after you.
Unlike other Indian cities, Varanasi offers amazing excitements and challenges to tourists. First visit: 24 December 2004. Second visit: 6 January 2010
A peek into their eyes: At a Ganga ghat in Varanasi.
My visit to Varanasi five years ago was first in many aspects. That was my first India trip, my first visit to any city outside Nepal. That was my first encounter with the Indian crowd, the intense and chaotic city life that can’t be seen in Nepal. Most of the things appeared to be larger and louder. The river Ganges seemed to be slightly bigger than the Indian Ocean of my imagination. I hadn’t seen the sea. Continue reading
There's a small pond inside the Kamakhya Temple complex, Guwahati. (Photo gallery inside)
I took a train to Guwahati from New Jalpaiguri. I had come there from Sikkim in a bus in a near-five hour journey. The bus ride wan’t very enjoyable as the road was curvy and I feel dizzying in such trip. Glad that I didn’t throw out. Waited for a couple of hours in the NJP train station eating and charging iPhone. A Nepali couple, just married I assumed, came to my table. Initially I thought that was just another Indian couple heading for honeymoon or something. I had to wait until they talked. I just listened to their conversation for a few minutes. There was no alternative in fact as my phone was plugged in and was being charged. And the food was there at the table. Continue reading
No Phelps: At the Pichola lake, Udaipur.
Udaipur’s the destination of our tour. We are taking train to Delhi in the evening. We went around the city. I liked the place as it was small, cozy and vibrant.
City at the bank of the artificial lake. The palace in the middle of the lake has been turned into a luxary hotel
Parts of the lake as seen from the rooftop of the hotel where we stayed.
Xu Jie, the Chinese traveller, at the rooftop restaurant of the hotel
Kids plunge at the Pichola lake
Not far from lake Pichola is a Thamel like tourist lane. We stayed at the other side of the lake.
A woman tries to fix a postcard while her husband and father-in-law in a family run shop near lake Pichola
An artist who makes postcards and other paintings and sells to tourists at his shop near lake Pichola
Xu Jie, the Chinese tourist, writes at the wall of the postcard shop after buying postcards. He said he wrote something good about the shop and the art!
Xu Jie explains the postcard shop owner what he just scribbled
Ren shi nin hen gao xing? That’s Mandarian for ‘nice to meet you’ accordign to a site. But not sure what Xu wrote on the wall there. Seems like some piece of art to me though!
Xu Jie calls his home
There are several hills like this one around Udaipur
Like all other major palaces of the region, this is huge
As seen from the front of the City palace
It was very hot when we were in Udaipur
So many tourists visit Udaipur that these kids are used to with cameras
A sadhu washes out
Rooftop of the hotel where we stayed. It’s comfortale over there and folks spend hours to enjoying the view and some okay type food.
We arrived in Jodhpur early in the morning from Jaisalmer. Xu Jie is having tea in a chai shop near the railway station.
At a tea shop at the Jodhpur railway station. The touts, autowallas and agents working for hotels make visitors go crazy by their offers
A traveller awaits bus in Jodhpur to go to Udaipur
Xu Jie takes nap in the bus on way to Udaipur
Near the Pichola lake, Udaipur