A trip to Bali would be incomplete visiting a few of the famous temples and witnessing the rituals, ceremonies and festivals that take place. Also known as the island of Gods, Bali with it majoritarian Hindu population has hundreds of temples also known as Pura, many of which being centuries old. Lets get familiar with some of the must visit temples.
Popularly known as “Bali’s Scenic Beach Temple” for its unique offshore setting and panoramic view of sunset, the Tanah Lot Temple is a must not miss temple at Bali.
The temple is located just offshore to the south west of Bali perched on a rock by the shore with waves crashing all around during high tides. The temple was built around 16th century with the deity of worship being Dewa Baruna or Bhatara Segara, the sea power. Ideal time to visit the temple would be late afternoon so that you could tour the temple and witness the evening sunset.
It’s great to visit the temple during festivals where one can witness cultural offerings and presenting traditional dance performances.
There are also a number of food joints and souvenir shops to grab a bite or pick up Balinese trinkets for family and friends.
Pura Tirta Empul
“Tirta Empul” means ‘holy water spring’, named after a source of water within the temple premises. This Hindu Balinese temple located in Manukaya village, district of Tampaksiring, central Bali. The temple consists of a bathing structure where Balinese Hindu devotees perform purification baths because they believe it will bring health and fortune. They consider the water to be holy and pure. The temple is dedicated to Lord Vishnu and is popularly known for a legendary tale about good versus evil.
Pura Ulun Danu Beratan
Pura Ulun Danu Beratan is a major water temple on Bali, Indonesia dedicated to Lord Shiva, Vishnu, Brahma as well as the lake goddess Devi Danu. Located on the shores
of Lake Bratan near Bedugul with the scenic mountain range on backdrop this temple is also a iconic tourist landmark in Bali.
The devotees come to this temple to offer prayers and ceremonies to the Balinese water, lake and river goddess Devi Danu, as it is one of the main source of irrigation in central Bali. The 11 storied Meru tower known as Pelinggih Meru is dedicated to Lord Shiva and Parvati. It takes 45 minutes to get to the Pura Ulun Danu temple from Lovina. From Ubud and Kuta its about 2 hours drive to reach this temple.
Pura Luhur Uluwatu
Uluwatu Temple or Pura Luhur Uluwatu is built on a cliff or rock 70 meters above the Indian Ocean and is regarded as one of the six holiest places of worship in Bali. It is located in Pecatu Village, Kuta sub-district.
The temple is dedicated to Sang Hyang Widhi with a demonstration as Rudra. You will find numerous macaque monkeys in the area that very often snatch visitors belongings, so make sure to hold your belongings tightly and keep it safe.
There is also a cave underneath formed out of rock leading to a scenic beach close to the temple that is a popular spot for surfers. There is an entrance fee is Rp 30,000 (approx $2.10) and conservative clothing is preferred while visiting.
Sarongs and Sashes are available at the entrance free of cost. It is one of Bali’s key temples and the area is also the 4th best surfing destination for experienced surfers around the globe.
Pura Besakih is located in the village of Basakih 1000 meters up Mount Gunung Agung in East Bali. It is the holiest temple for all Balinese Hindus in Bali and is known as “The Mother Temple”. It shares space with 22 other temples in the same complex with a symbolic lotus throne in the centre that is a ritual focus of the entire complex. Ideal times to visit would be early morning and in the evening as the complex is much quieter during these hours.