7 Sea Temples of Beautiful Bali: The Island Paradise Of 1,000 Temples [51 PICS]

November 30th, 2012 Permalink

Beautiful Bali has been called the famed island of the Gods. With its varied landscape of sandy beaches, hills and mountains, rugged coastlines and cliffs, gorgeous waterfalls, as well as lush rice terraces and barren volcanic hillsides, some people claim that Bali is a paradise on earth. But Bali also has a colorful and deeply spiritual culture, which is why it is known as the “island of a thousand temples.” There are sea temples, directional temples and so many others so that 1,000 is an understatement. In fact, everywhere you go, you see a temple. “There are so many temples that the Government does not bother to count them.” There are also monkeys guarding the temples, monkeys in the rain forest, and even bats in a cave temple. Here’s a look at the sea temples, some wonderfully cute wildlife like monkeys, and some other stunning temples on the paradise on earth known as beautiful Bali. [51 Photos]

A Bali sunset and Tanah Lot Temple, one of seven sea temples

After being inspired by a gorgeous photo of Tanah Lot, a sea temple in Bali, we looked up more information. There are seven sea temples, but in trying to find them all, we kept bumping into images of directional temples. Then even more temples, until we found out that beautiful Bali is known as the “island of a thousand temples.” According to the CIA World Fact Book, Indonesia is “slightly less than three times the size of Texas.” Bali is the largest tourist destination in the whole country . . . and everywhere you go there is a temple. “A Bali sunset and Tanah Lot Temple,” one of seven sea temples. Photo #1 by Fabio Gismondi

Aerial photo of Uluwatu Temple

Uluwatu Temple is situated at an altitude of 1997 meters (6551.8 feet) above sea level. It is also a sea temple. In front of the temple there is a small forest called kekeran base, serves as a support of the sanctity of the temple. Each of the seven Balinese sea temples are said to be visible from the next, forming a ‘chain’ around the coast of Bali. Many of the most important sea temples are along the south-west coast of the island. Photo #2 by Panorama Wallpaper


Rainbow over Bali temple for the sea goddess

“While in Bali, why not visit a temple? They have lots. This is a temple for the sea goddess,” wrote the photographer. “The lake in which it stands is a volcanic lake filling the crater of a monster volcano. Bali has several active volcanoes. The last eruption took place in 1996 when Gunung Agung exploded killing some 2000+ The Balinese blamed it on their priests. Apparently they had gotten the date for an important cleansing ritual wrong by about a decade.” Photo #3 by David Blackwell

Boutique Hotel Ubud Hanging Gardens in Bali2 sweet design infinity pool 2012

Bali, the famed Island of the Gods, with landscapes of lush rice terraces, volcanic hillsides, mountains, rugged cliffs, sandy beaches and wonderful waves for surfing. That is what people might think of for a vacation to Bali. But even from this sweet infinity pool at the Boutique Hotel Ubud Hanging Gardens, there is a temple in the background. In fact, after looking around a bit, there is little wonder why Bali is also called the “island of a thousand temples.” Photo #4 by Hot Style Design

Ulun Danu Temple, beautiful Bali temple, an island of one thousand temples

Mystical setting at Ulun Danu Temple complex. Ulun means heart, Danu means lake. This Temple is dedicated to the Goddess of The lake. This lake supplies water to the rice field. Photo #5 by Bali Tour Package

Mother temple or Pura Besakih on the slopes of a Volcanic mountain is the largest and Holiest temple of Bali

According to the photographer, This is “the mother temple or Pura Besakih on the slopes of Volcanic mountain “Mount Agung” in eastern Bali. The largest and Holiest temple of Bali. This temple is made up of twenty-two shrines sitting on parallel ridges.” Photo #6 by Suresh Eswaran

Bali Tanah Lot

“Bali Tanah Lot. Taken at arround 19.00, long exposure 30 seconds. No, that’s not a dead pixel, but they’re some stars :D,” wrote the photographer. This is one of the hotspots for tourists and photographers from all across the globe. Photo #7 by Bram Vera Family

Pura Pulaki at Pulaki

Temple Pulaki at Pulaki, another one of the seven sea temples at Bali. In explaining why Bali is the island of a thousand temples, it was said that a mere thousand is a tremendous understatement. “It is not surprising that Bali is called the island of the thousand temples. Everywhere you see a temple. There are so many temples that the Government does not bother to count them. There are small temples, very small temples with only a very few shrines; there are large temples, very large temples with more than 50 shrines, such as the Temple of Besakih, the mother temple of Bali.” Photo #8 by verarfujastawan

Pura Gere Perancak

Pura Gere Perancak, stone crocodiles at another one of seven Balinese sea temples. Pura is another name for temple. More explaining Balinese temples: Bali. “There are even lonely shrines on the oddest places where one does not expect them at all. Every family, every compound, every clan or society has a temple; you mention a society or organization and has a temple. In the compound where the family lives there is the family temple. The desa, village itself must have at least three temples.” Photo #9 by auboutdumonde

Monkey at Uluwatu Temple

Monkey at Uluwatu Temple. Monkeys are at temples and in the jungle. Photo #10 by didiz rushdi

Majestic cliff and Uluwatu Temple

Majestic cliff and Uluwatu, one of seven sea temples. Each “clan has its own temple. Subak or irrigation organization has a temple, called Pura Subak or Pura Bedugul. Every place where the water to irrigate the rice field is divided has a temple or at least a shrine. Bali has a whole has a temple, the pura Besakih or the mother temple, where every sect and nobility have their own temple. The balinese are worshippers of ancestors. The family does this in the family temple or house temple.” Photo #11 by GeoffClarke

Rambut Siwi Temple, Bali

The name Rambut Siwi is closely related to the holy journey of Hindu prophet Danghyang Nirartha in the sixteenth century. It one of seven sea temples in Bali. Rambut Siwi is situated on a cliff with a breathtaking view of rice fields on one side and the black sand beaches on the other side, with the island of Java in the distant background. Visitors can see traditional salt making facilities not far from the shrine at Pura Rambut Siwi. “At This site Niratha is said to have made a gift of a lock of his hair, which was worshiped. Rambut Siwi translates as ‘worship of the hair’ and the tale is reminiscent of the Buddhist story of Gautama giving eight hairs to Tapussa and Bhallika, which are now enshrined at Shwedagon.” Photo #12 by Bali Tourism Board

Pura Sakenan at Pulau Serengan, the Sakenan temple is one of the seven sea temples in Bali

Pura Sakenan, on a Serangan Island, a small island in Bali located between Benoa and Sanur. This is how the temple appeared 100 years ago, as this photo was taken between 1910-1920. Photo #13 by Tropenmuseum of the Royal Tropical Institute

Monkey at the Pulaki temple which is also referred to as Monkey Temple

The Pulaki temple from Photo #8 is also referred to as Monkey Temple. This image might help to explain why. “The monkeys are free and taken care of by monks, but tourists can come in the temple and play with them if you offer them peanuts or bananas. They are very friendly but still wild so be careful to respect them. The temple is gorgeous and very traditional, located right on the shore in front of the sea, and will give you unforgettable memories, especially if you are lucky enough to catch a traditional Hindu ceremony while you are there.” Photo #14 by baliilmare

Bathing the healing waters of Tirta Empul temples is considered one of the 6 most important temples in Bali

Bathing in the healing waters of Tirta Empul temple, considered “one of the six most important temples in Bali.” It is not, however, a sea temple. Pura Tirta Empul dates back to 926 AD. Visitors are allowed to take a bath in the pond and the unstoppable water flow is believed to be able to cure any kinds of diseases. The photographer called this “Taste the holiness.” Photo #15 by Shreyans Bhansali

Elephant Cave Ubud Bali Indonesia

Elephant Cave, Ubud, Bali Indonesia. Photo #16 by Wallpapers Travel

Monkeys guarding the Balinese temples

Monkeys in nature, in the jungle and guarding the Balinese temples. Photo #17 by Martien

Taman Ayun Bali temple

“Taman Ayun literally translated means beautiful garden, and this temple, situated in the village of Mengwi, 18 km west of Denpasar, is indeed one of Bali’s most picturesque temples. Its stately proportioned courtyards and large surrounding moat were built in the year 1634 by the King of Mengwi, I Gusti Agung Anom.” Photo #18 by Bali Tourism Board

Limestone crocodiles and dragons at Pura Gede Perancak temple, one of the seven sea temples in Bali

Perancak is where Nirartha landed in Bali in 1546. Photo #9 showed the limestone crocodiles of Pura Gede Perancak temple, but here are dragons in the same temple, one of the seven sea temples. According to WhyGo, “This is an important temple for Balinese people. The temple was built in the 16th Century by a Javanese priest named Nirartha. During the Galungan festival, particularly the closing day of Kuningan, the temple is very busy. Pura Sakenan is a public temple, meaning Balinese people from all over the island can come and receive blessings.” Photo #19 by eklablog

Rice terrace in Bali near temple

Rice terrace in Bali near temple. The tremendous terraced rice fields are famous. Photo #20 by Indonesia wallpapers

Pathway to Tanah Lot, Pathway to Small Island Floating on the Sea

Pathway to Small Island Floating on the Sea. The photographer wrote, “The word of Tanah Lot is consisted of two words that are Tanah word interpreted as a reef looking like gili or isle. Lot or Lod word has meaning the sea. So Tanah Lot is meaning the small island floating on the sea. The location is now called as Tanah Lot has been used at a Megalithic period as a place that looked into holy, proven from the existence of menhir. Pursuant to environmental condition, hence the structure of Tanah Lot Temple is built at irregular reef plain of its angle which is only consisted of one plain yard as Jeroan.” Photo #21 by Eustaquio Santimano

The day ends at Tanah Lot Temple in Bali

The day ends at Tanah Lot Temple. Simply stunning sunset. Photo #22 by Dennis Stauffer

Pura Ulun Danu Bratan temple in Bali, Indonesia

Pura Ulun Danu Bratan, a Hindu temple in Bali, Indonesia. It is part of the temple complex, at the edge of Lake Bratan in the mountains near Bedugul. Wikipedia states, “Water temples serve the entire region in the outflow area; downstream there are many smaller water temples that are specific to each irrigation association. Built in 1663, this temple is used for offerings ceremony to the Balinese water, lake and river goddess Dewi Danu, due to the importance of Lake Bratan as a main source of irrigation in central Bali. The 11 stories of pelinggih meru dedicated for Shiva and his consort Parvathi. Buddha statue also present inside this temple. Lake Bratan is known as the Lake of Holy Mountain due to the fertility of this area. Located 1200 m above sea level, it has a cold tropical climate.” Photo #23 by Tropical Island

High tide at Pura Tanah Lot (Hindu Temple), Bali, Indonesia

The tide is high at Pura Tanah Lot. Photo #24 by tripletrouble

Atmosphere of the Past. Traditional Farmer near Rambut Siwi

Atmosphere of the Past. Traditional Farmer near Rambut Siwi. The photographer added, “The above atmosphere are rarely found in fields now. Today they are surrounded by mostly residential, and residential villas. The use of tractors, etc also farmers’ associations get diminishing. In the past all are friends with nature, fresh air, natural aura filled with peace.” Photo #25 by I Nengah Januartha

Rice terrace located near a temple

Rice terrace located near a temple. Photo #26 by goodwp

Pemuteran Pulaki Temple

“Spiritual Journey to Pemuteran Pulaki Temple,” one of the seven sea temples. Photo #27 by campahcumampah

Sacred hot springs 'Air Panas' of Banjar

“The sacred hot springs ‘Air Panas’ of Banjar are set in the midst of the jungle in a beautifully landscaped tropical garden, close to Lovina Beach, and it consist of three public and one private pool,” wrote the photographer. “The sulphuric water is of volcanic origin and has an agreeable warm temperature of 37 degrees Celcius, ideal for people suffering from rheumatic diseases. The hot spring water gushes from the mouths of eight stone carved naga (mythical, dragon-like creatures) into the oblong shaped upper pool.” Photo #28 by Nyoman Yudiastrawan

Sea temple Luhur Uluwatu perched on cliffs, Uluwatu at sunset

The Sea Temple of Pura Luhur at Uluwatu in south Bali is perched on very impressive cliffs. Built in the 11th century, it is also one of nine directional temples meant to protect Bali from evil spirits. Photo #29 by chensiyuan & #30 by Sean McGrath

Bali Tanah lot Sunset, perhaps the prettiest of the sea temples

Bali Tanah lot Sunset, perhaps the prettiest of the sea temples. Photo #31 by Kenny (zoompict) Teo

Cave of the' Holy Snake'

Cave of the ‘Holy Snake’. The photographer wrote, “Tanah Lot Puri – Puri meaning Temple in Balinese is one of Balis most sacred Sea Temples dedicated to the Hindu guardian spirits of the sea. It is said to be protected from evil spirits by the sea snakes that ‘apparently’ inhabit the caves surrounding.” Photo #32 by Mel Travelled

1000s of Fruit Bats pile onto each other on the cliffs and caves overlooking Tanah Lot Temple in Canggu, Bali, Indonesia

Thousands of Fruit Bats pile onto each other on the cliffs and caves overlooking Tanah Lot Temple in Canggu, Bali, Indonesia. In fact, there are so many bats that you might think this is a bat cave . . . Photo #33 by Mikaku

Goa Lawah Temple, aka Bat Temple, in a cave filled with bats

But this is the bat cave at the ancient Bat Temple, also known as Pura Goa Lawah. According to the photographer, Goa Lawah Temple “is one in six representative temples in Bali. This temple is famous as ‘Bat’s cave temple’. It is a very old temple said that Saint Mpu Kuturan built in 1007. This photo was taken circa 1930. Several thousand bats are flying about in the cave. There is a legend that this cave continues to Pura Besakih. Photo #34 by Underground PFV Uitgeverij

Barong Dance at Goa Lawah aka the Bat Temple in a cave full of bats

Barong Dance at Goa Lawah aka the Bat Temple. Photo #35 by Ketut Sukandia

Huge elephant statue at entrance of Goa Lawa

Huge stone elephant at entrance of Goa Lawa. Photo #36 by Viajar24h.com

Temple natural bridge at Tanah Lot

Natural bridge to sea temple at Tanah Lot. Photo #37 by Mutante

Pura Tanah Lot in Bali

Pura Tanah Lot is probably one of the most spectacular temples, sitting atop the majestic cliffs overlooking the surf at Uluwatu. Luhur means “something of divine origin” and “Uluwatu” can be broken into “ulu” which means “land’s end” and “watu” means “rock.” Photo #38 by Jefferson Kasan Hidayat

Ramayana Dance & The Circle of Fire at Uluwatu

Ramayana Dance & The Circle of Fire. One photographer explained that “the highlight of the kecak performance at Uluwatu is when Hanuman, the white monkey, is blessed by a real priest while he resides in the magical circle of fire.” Photo #39 by Mat McDermott

The Sacred Monkeys Of Uluwatu Temple

The Sacred Monkeys guarding Uluwatu Temple. One of the photographers noted, “We were warned numerous times as we arrived that the monkeys here were quite aggressive, moreso than the guys at Ubud’s Monkey Forest. These ones will pull the glasses right off your face if you’re not careful! To be honest, though, they’re really just interested in anything that might be tasty and if you exercise a bit of common sense they won’t bother with you.” Photo #40 by Schristia & #41 by William Cho & #42 by Shaadi Faris

Gitgit waterfall

Gitgit Waterfall, Lovina, Bali, is the highest waterfall in Bali with a height of about 35 meters. Unsurprisingly, there is also a temple at Gitgit. Photo #43 by Schristia

Frozen Dragon Stare These are statues of the Komodo Dragons looking at a river in the Monkey Forest in Ubud, Bali

Frozen Dragon Stare: “These are statues of the Komodo Dragons looking at a river in the Monkey Forest in Ubud, Bali,” wrote the photographer. Photo #44 by Caneles

Sangeh Bali Monkey Forest, Monkey perched on demon in Monkey Forest

Right: Sangeh Bali Monkey Forest. Left: Monkey in Monkey Forest perched on a demon. “Nice Meal, But For Who?” asked the photographer. Photo #45 by Bali Tourism Board & #46 by Caneles

Balinese temples, Dalem Agung Padantegal Temple in Monkey Forest, Ubud, Bali, Indonesia

Balinese temples, Dalem Agung Padantegal Temple in Monkey Forest, Ubud, Bali, Indonesia. Photo #47 by っ (Rather)

Fire for Hindu cremation, Royal Cremation at Ubud, Bali

Right: Hindu Cremation in Ubud. Left: Naga Bandha, Royal Cremation Peliatan, Ubud, Bali. Photo #48 by Davenbelle & #49 by I Nengah Januartha

Pura Tirta Empul and people washing in the sacred water thought to have healing powers

Legend tells that the God Indra once tapped the springs during his battle with evil Mayadanawa. Following Mayadanawa’s wicked deed of poisoning nearby river and making hundreds of Indra’s retailers sick, the god created a spring of pure and sacred water to sure them. Tirta Empul temple was built around the springs and special bathing pools. Photo #50 by Bali Tourism Board

Mystic Bali Sunset over Tanah Lot

Mystic Bali. “Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery, and today is a gift.” Photo #51 by Dennis Stauffer


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