Bali: the island of the thousand temples

Bali has over 1.000.000 temples. That’s why it is called ‘’the Island of the thousand temples’’. The temples are the places where people and gods meet. Balinese people have temples for every aspect of their life. For example family temple, village temple, cave temple, even for products like rice temple etc. The visitors are requested to respect the dress code when entering the temples. They shouldn’t wear shorts, mini skirts or anything else that may offend their religion. In front of the temples one can hire a sarong (a long piece of cloth that you can tie on your waist). At anniversaries and festival days Balinese people bring offerings to their gods, so the gods will always protect them and give them prosperity.

Besakih temple (the mother temple)

Besakih temple is the oldest and the most important temple in Bali and it’s also known as ‘’Mother Temple’’. It’s on the slopes of Mount Agung. The legend says that when the volcano waked up, the lava went around the temple, leaving it untouched. Besakih consists of 22 separate structures. The three main temples are devoted to Shiva, Brahma and Vishnu, the three gods of the Trisakti (the holy trinity). The best time to visit Besakih is early in the morning when is quieter and during festival days so you can witness all the special ceremonies by the Balinese.

Tanah Lot temple – the sea temple

Tanah Lot temple is situated in a huge rock surrounded by the sea and it means ‘’land in the middle of the sea’’. On this temple lives the spirit of the sea. When the tide is low you can walk to Tanah Temple. But when the tide is high it seems like it is floating. Under the temple poisonous snakes where found and it was believed to have protected the temple from invaders and bad spirits. Due to its position, you’d better visit Tanah temple in the sunset for a spectacular view when the temple is in a silhouette against the sun.

Pura Luhur Uluwatu – a spectacular view

In Uluwatu high on a cliff edge is located Pura Luhur temple. It has a breathtaking view to the Indian Ocean. Uluwatu can be translated as the end of the land or the rock. There is no need to mention that the sunset from this temple is indescribable. This temple is dedicated to sea spirits, as well.

Pura Tirta Empul – Sacred springs

Around the sacred springs of Tampak Siring is the temple Pura Tirta Empul. It has two bathing spots and the water that comes out considered to be healing. Many Balinese people come here to place offerings and to be cured. According to legend god Indra created the springs so he could have immortality against the evil king Mayadanawa. Outside the temple there are lots of shops to buy souvenirs

Pura Ulun Danu – the lake tample

On the shore of Danau Bratan (Lake Danau) you can see Pure Ulun Danu temple. It seems like the temple is rising from the waters of the lake. It is dedicated to goddess Dewi Batari Ulun Danu, goddess of the lakes and rivers. This temple is the second most important one after Besakih, Mother Temple.

Taman Ayun Temple in Mengwi – the Beautiful Garden

The most beautiful temple is said to be Taman Ayun in Mengwi village. Taman Ayun is translated ‘’Beautiful Garden’’. It’s a family temple with big, full of flowers gardens. On the temple’s festival day, hundreds of women bring colorful offerings which they place in front of ‘’merus’’.