DISTRICT OF BADUNG
Uluwatu Temple is perched on a cliff of a rocky hill on the southernmost part of Bali. Balinese believe the shrine was the result of the metamorphosis of the God’s holy water. This temple was built and chosen by one of Hindu’s most respected priest, Danghyang Nirartha to unite with God Almighty, moksa. Uluwatu Temple is surrounded by trees and bushes occupied by tamed army of monkeys.
Location: Uluwatu is about 30 km south of Denpasar, about one hour driving from Kuta or Ngurah Rai International Airport
Facility: Souvenir shops, traditional food stalls and an amphitheater staging daily Kecak dance around sunset.
TAMAN AYUN TEMPLE
Taman Ayun Temple is a royal shrine built in 1634 at the height of the Mengwi Kingdom, one of the island’s most powerful political hubs disappearing by the end of the nineteenth century. It is about 300 meter east of the former palace of Mengwi . This temple is surrounded by many water lilies. The temple yard is always green and fresh with well cared flowers and grass. Across the temple is ‘Museum Manusa Yadnya’, the museum of human ceremony, housing collections describing human life cycles, especially the rituals that follows since one is carried in mother’s womb until he dies off.
Location: Taman Ayun Temple is located in Mengwi, Badung, about 19 km north of Denpasar.
Facility: On the west side of this temple is a descent restaurant inside a building called Wisata Mandala. Public transportation is available nearby the building.
PUCAK MANGU TEMPLE
Pucak Mangu Temple was built in 1633 by the first king of Mengwi at the very top Mt Mangu. Surrounded by massive green foliage, virgin rainforest, the temple is an ideal finish point for someone fond of hiking while enjoying spectacular vista above the Bratan Lake and the historical temple at the center of the peak.
Location: Puncak Mangu Temple is located in the sub-district of Petang, Badung, about 48 km north of Denpasar.
The uniquely designed Jagatnatha Temple located at the very heart of Denapsar was built in 1968. The temple is especially observed for religious ceremony during full moon. Next to the temple is the mayor office of Denpasar and Puputan Badung Park, the site of a suicidal battle costing over 3,000 souls in September 20, 1906.
Location: Jagatnatha Temple is located at Jalan Mayor Wisnu, Denpasar
Maospahit is better known as an archaeological remain, often visited by the academic society for its terracotta statue which reminds one to the time of Java ‘s Majapahit Kingdom around the fourteenth century.
Location: Maospahit Temple is located at Dr. Sutomo Street, Denpasar, about 750 meters west of Jagatnatha Temple, next to traditional market Pasar Badung.
PETILAN PENGEREBONGAN TEMPLE
Petilan Pengerebongan is famous for its very unique ceremony ‘Ngerebong’, where the angel reflecting Barong fights against the evil Rangda and an army of male trance dancers, stab themselves with their dagger ‘Keris’. This ceremony is held every 210 days according to Balinese Calendar.
Location: Petilan Pengerebongan is located in Kesiman Petilan, East Denpasar, about five km east of the capital. Public transport is available from the main bus station. The temple is easily reached about three km north Sanur.
Sakenan Temple was built in the sixteenth century by the last arriving Hindu prophet Dang Hyang Nirartha, when the last groups of Hindu-Buddhists arrived in Bali. Sakenan Temple is located in a small island south of Denpasar. Dubbed the Turtle Island, Serangan is heavily surrounded by mangrove forests. It has a very unique architecture, combining Hindu and Buddhist architectural design with coral stone as the foundation.
Location: Sakenan Temple is located in Serangan Island, south of Denpasar, 30 minute drive from Kuta.
Facility: souvenir shops and food stalls around the temple.
DISTRICT OF GIANYAR
PENATARAN SASIH TEMPLE
Penataran Sasih is one of the oldest temples in Bali, housing a collection of pre-Hindu objects. The famous one is Nekara, locally known as the Pejeng Moon, the Asia’s biggest bronze drum, measuring two meter long by 160cm of diameter. Special temple festivals are held in the 9th month of the Balinese calendar.
Location: Penataran Sasih Temple is located in Pejeng, Gianyar, eight km west of Gianyar, or 27 km west of Denpasar.
Facility: There are handicraft and painting galleries and traditional food stalls across the temple.
KEBO EDAN TEMPLE
Kebo Edan, literally means crazy buffalo, temple is believed as the shrine to worship the god of death, Siwa. There is a statue of the god dancing above dead bodies known as Ciwa Bhairawa. Kebo Edan statue, measuring 3.6 meter high, is believed as the representative of a giant who has six penises and is a hard-follower of God Ciwa. Beside him stand many horrified male effigies.
Location: Kebo Edan Temple is located in Pejeng, Gianyar, near Penataran Sasih Temple, about eight km west of Gianyar.
PUSERING JAGAT TEMPLE
Pusering Jagat Temple is located in north of Kebo Edan Temple, showing how god creates human being, depicting ‘Purusha and Pradana’, male and female sex organs. Another statue depicting a big basin called ‘Sangku Sudamala’ is believed as the water container to keep holly water falling from the house of gods.
Location: Pusering Jagat Temple is located in Pejeng, Gianyar, eight km west of Gianyar
Mangening Temple shows us the course of human creation, with sculptures portraying male and female sex organs yet in different shapes called Lingga-Yoni. The temple surroundings are full of green trees and various kinds of flowers.
Location: Mangening Temple is located in Tampaksiring, about 15 km from the capital Gianyar, 37 km west of Denpasar.
This Hindu-Buddhist temple was discovered in 1983, with several Buddhist stupas. The biggest one is located in the center. Pengulingan Temple is observed by local Buddhist followers.
Location: Pengulingan temple is located in Manukaya Village, Tampaksiring sub-district, 16 km from Gianyar, 38 km from Denpasar.
GOA GAJAH (ELEPHANT CAVE) TEMPLE
The name Goa Gajah Elephan Cave is not definitely known derived from certain source of origin. It was said when the cave was first unearthed, its entrance’s upper part was mistakenly believed as an elephant trunk, so did the name stick. Goa Gajah is a temple inside a cave. This temple is believed as the center for yoga and meditation during Hindu-Buddhism era. A ganesha statue reflects a Buddhism side, while its Ciwa statue portrays the Hinduisms counterpart. On the west corner of this cave lays Buddha and Harito statues. Goa Gajah temple is surrounded by green rice fields along the River Petanu.
Location: Goa gajah Temple is located in Bedulu Village, sub-district of Blahbatuh, Gianyar, 26 km east of Denpasar.
Facility: An arrays of food stalls and souvenir shops.
DISTRICT OF BANGLI
Kehen Temple records the virtual history of Bangli from its ancient age. The word Kehen is
i derived from Keren flame. Formerly, it was known as Hyang Api fire god temple. Three small Nekara bronze drums suggest fire god Hyang Api was observed here in the past. The grand ceremony is held every three years on Buda Kliwon Shinta, the fifth full moon according Balinese calendar, or around November.
Location: Kehen Temple is located on the southern slope of Bangli hill, two km from the capital.
PUNCAK PENULISAN TEMPLE
Puncak Penulisan Temple is located on the top of Mt Penulisan, the peak which divides Bangli into two main parts, east and west. The temple houses various items from megalithic era. Its millennium-aged design is seen from the composition of the 11 terraces. These terraces reveal the continuation of the pyramidal styles from the Megalithic age, a unique look.
Location: Puncak Penulisan Temple is situated at 1,745 meter above the sea level, about three km from the sub-district of Kintamani, 30 km from Bangli.
BATUR / ULUN DANU TEMPLE
Batur temple is located 900 meter above sea level, known as one of the six main temples, Sad Kahyangan. Legend says Mt. Batur was brought by the God from the top of Mt. Mahameru in India. Sang Hyang Dewi Danu, the god of prosperity, is believed to reside here. Near the temple is the breath-taking Lake Batur, formed by the massive caldera of Mt. Batur.
Location: Batur Temple is located in Kintamani, about 23 km north of Bangli, 65 km north of Denpasar.
DISTRICT OF KLUNGKUNG
TAMAN SARI TEMPLE
Taman Sari is one among the beautifully-set temples with vast garden and surrounding pool. Various species of indigenous flowers and trees of Bali surround the beautifully arranged meru storey-roofed shrines, eleven and nine stories respectively. Each of the meru was built above two big turtle statues twisted by a dragon statue called Ananthaboga. It depicts a story of the gods fighting the devils while searching for holy water.
Location: Taman Sari Temple is located in Sengguan Village, Klungkung, 500 meter northeast of the capital Semarapura.
WATU KLOTOK TEMPLE
One of the six main temples in Bali, Watu Klotok Temple is located on a black sandy beach south of the capital Semarapura. Watu Klotok is believed as the shrine to purify human soul, the small world, and the entire universe, the big world. A special ceremony was administered here right after the blast in Kuta, aimed at cleansing the world from the evil spirit. Piodalan ceremony or Pujawali is held every Anggara Kliwon Julungwangi, once in seven month, and Ngusabha, once a year.
Location: Watu Klotok Temple is located on the shore of Klotok beach, five km south of the capital.Semarapura.
PANTI TIMBRAH TEMPLE
Panti Timbrah Temple has a very unique ritual called Perang Jempana the battle of deities, held every 210 days on Kuningan day. The sacred rite begins with a bathing ritual in the Unda River in the morning. The main event is held in late in the afternoon, involving dozens of young men carrying the deities’ effigies on jempana palanquins. Each palanquin is beautifully decorated with yellow and gold colored cloths, flower and leaves.
An army of young men in a trance carry each Jempana, running around the temple ground, chasing and crashing each other. The high spirited gamelan orchestra helps create a frenzied atmosphere. Often a group from a huge crowd of onlookers which gather on the temple ground fall into a collective trance, adding a timid shade to this rare ceremony. After several hours of fighting Perang Jempana is stopped by sprinkling holy water to the entranced bearers and the deities’ effigies are taken out from the palanquins and returned to the temple.
Location: Panti Timbrah Temple is located in Pasekbali Billage, sub-district of Dawan, three km north-east of the capital Semarapura.
GOA LAWAH TEMPLE
Goa Lawah Temple is located inside a cave occupied by bats, so as it gets its name, lawah, the nocturnal. This is the shrine to worship the god of sea Bhatara Tengahing Segara or Bhatara Baruna. This temple is a must observed temple especially by those fulfilling Ngaben cremation ceremony, as the ash of the cremated about to be drifted to the sea. Across the temple is Kusamba, a used-to-be port village now turning a into traditional salt making facility.
Location: Goa Lawah temple is located in the sub-district of Dawan, Klungkung, 49 km from Denpasar or 10 km east of the capital Semarapura.
Facility: Traditional food stalls, souvenir shops, public transports.
DISTRICT OF KARANGASEM
Perched on the slope of the island’s highest peak of Mt. Agung, the mother temple of Bali, Besakih, is by size the biggest temple. Historical accounts say the temple was built by Maharesi Markandya in the eleventh century in a quest for god blessing upon a devastating disease striking the majority of Bali, including his faithful students. The word Besakih comes from Basukihan means safety and prosperity. Thousands of Balinese Hindus pay a pilgrimage to this temple thus thanking for their prosperous lives.
Location: Besakih Temple is located in Rendang sub-district, Karangasem, about two hours drive from Denpasar.
Facility: Accommodations, food stalls, public transportations, souvenir shops.
DISTRICT OF TABANAN
ALAS KEDATON TEMPLE
As it name suggests, Alas Kedaton, forest palace, the temple is located inside of a jungle. From the historical and archeological point of views, this temple can be classified into two main parts. The first shows the pre-Hindu or Megalithic age and the other one the initial era of Hindu influence. Tamed monkey and giant bats are the kings of the forest kingdom.
Location: Alas Kedaton Temple is located in the sub-istrict of Marga, Tabanan, 25km north-west of Denpasar.
Facility: Traditional food stalls, an array of souvenir shops
RAMBUT SIWI TEMPLE
The name Rambut Siwi is closely related to the holy journey of Hindu prophet Danghyang Nirartha in the sixteenth century. On his spiritual voyage from West to south Bali the spiritual leader gave his flock of hair to be worshiped by the people of the neighborhood, so the temple was called Rambut Siwi (rambut means hair). Rambut Siwi temple is located on the shore of black sand sea west of Tabanan. Visitors can see traditional salt making facilities not far from the shrine.
Location: Rambut Siwi Temple is located on the southwestern beach of Bali, sub-district of Mendoyo, Tabanan, 78 km west of Denpasar.
ULUN DANU / ULUN DANU BERATAN TEMPLE
Ulun Danu is a beautifully positioned temple built above small projecting land on Lake Beratan, thus it is known as Ulun Danu, a power or head of the lake. The power refers to goddess of prosperity, Sang Hyang Dewi Danu. Visitors can explore the temple from a distance by renting traditional yacht. Regular temple ceremony is executed every six months called Piodalan, on a day called Anggara Kliwon Julungwan, and the bigger one called Piodalan Agung every 12 months.
Location: Ulun Danu Temple is located in Lake Beratan, sub-district of Baturiti, Tabanan, a close distance from Bedugul Botanical Garden.
Facility: restaurants, souvenir shops. Accommodations can be found around the main road, about 500 meters from the temple.
DISTRICT OF BULELENG
Brahma Vihara-Arama is also known as Banjar Buddhist, the island’s biggest Buddhist monastery. The temple was built in 1969, occupying an area of 1,000 square meters of ocean facing hilly land. The building design and the ornaments reflect typical Balinese architecture, with big stupa on the center and a Buddha statue one side. People call this temple as the miniature of Java’s largest Buddhist temple of Borobudur.
Location: Brahma Vihara-Arama is located in Tegeha Village, sub-district of Banjar, Buleleng , about 22 km west of the capital Singaraja.
MEDUWE KARANG TEMPLE
Meduwe Karang Temple is one of the very unique temples in Bali—as its name suggests the material made for—sea coral. Additionally, there are a total of 34 coral statues depicting the characters from the Indian epic Ramayan. Uniquely, the temple is observed mostly by the surrounding farming community, for their green, prosperous rice fields.
Location: Meduwe Karang Temple is located in Kubutambahan Village, Buleleng, 12 km east of Singaraja.
As the shrine of the god of rice, Dewi Sri, Beji Temple is observed most by the farming communities. Uniquely enough, each part of this temple is adorned with plants and flower. Beji temple is built within Majapahit Kingdom era, around the XV century. Beji Temple is the inspiration for the traditional agricultural system called Subak.
Location: Beji Temple is located in Sangsit Village, sub-district of Sawan, Buleleng, eight km east of Singaraja.
DALEM JAGARAGA TEMPLE
Dalem Jagaraga Temple belongs to Pura Kahyangan Tiga, three of the main temples in a village. This is the shrine to worship the god of death Ciwa or Durga so that when someone dies, his/her soul will depart for the heaven, not meandering on the earth. No definite source as reference about when the temple was built, most people believe that it was built during the Dutch colonial era, as displayed here on the relief carve, showing the war between the local fighters against the Dutch in an epic called Perang Jagaraga, battle of Jagaraga.
Location: Dalem Jagaraga Temple is located in Jagaraga Village, sub-district of Sawan, Buleleng, 11 km east of Singaraja.
Pulaki Temple is one of the temples in Bali which was built on the cliff of coral hill. This temple is dedicated to worshiping one Hindu’s holy virgin girl Cri Patni Keniten. Pulaki is set on the beautiful view of Bali northwestern beach, with tamed army of monkeys guarding around.
Location: Pulaki Temple is located in Banyupoh village, sub-district of Grokgak, Buleleng, 53 km west of Singaraja.
Facility: Accommodation are available in Pemuteran village, few kilometers to the west.
PONJOK BATU TEMPLE
Ponjok Batu temple was built by King Cri Waturenggong (1460-1515). Ponjok Batu means Stoney Cape. This temple was in respect to the wandering priest Dang Hyang Nirartha, during his spiritual journey to teach Hinduism by the turn of the sixteenth century. From the temple vicinity, visitors can enjoy the beautiful view of Jawa Sea. A holy spring near the temple provide bathing facility and source of holy water for ceremonies.
Location: Ponjok Batu Temple is located in Pacung village, sub-district of Tejakula, Buleleng, 24 km east of Singaraja.
Facility: traditional food stalls on the parking area
DALEM SANGSIT TEMPLE
Something worth seeing from this temple is a stone relief describing the famous legend called Bima Swarga, the spiritual journey of Bima and to heaven after he departed his life, observing those who enjoyed their life for their good deeds and those punished for their wrongdoings, a “slide show” of heaven and torture.
Location: Dalem Sangsit Temple is located in Sangsit Village, eight km east of Singaraja.