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10 Best Temple to visit in Bali for a Temple Hopping Trip

Updated 06 Mar 2024
Best temple to visit in Bali

Bali is not just a popular travel destination for its stunning beaches and vibrant culture; it’s also a spiritual haven dotted with some of the most serene and beautiful temples in the world. Each of these temples has its own unique charm, steeped in history and mythology, offering visitors a glimpse into Bali’s rich religious heritage. If you want to plan a temple-hopping journey in Bali, you come to the right place. We’ll explore some of the most iconic temples in Bali, what makes them special, and why they should be on every traveler’s must-visit list.

1. Pura Tanah Lot

Tanah Lot Temple
Tanah Lot Temple

Pura Tanah Lot stands as one of Bali’s most iconic landmarks. This temple is uniquely perched on a rock formation just off the coast, making it appear as if it’s floating on the ocean during high tide. The temple’s name, which translates to “Land in the Sea,” perfectly captures its extraordinary setting. The best time to visit Pura Tanah Lot is at sunset when the sky’s changing colors provide a stunning backdrop to the temple’s silhouette. It’s not just a place for worship but also a perfect spot for photography enthusiasts and those looking to experience Bali’s magical sunsets.

2. Pura Luhur Uluwatu

uluwatu temple
Uluwatu Temple

Another breathtaking sunset spot is Pura Luhur Uluwatu, located on a dramatic cliff overlooking the Indian Ocean. This temple is renowned not only for its stunning location but also for the traditional Kecak dance performances that take place here every evening at sunset. These performances, which feature a group of male dancers chanting and dancing in a circle, are a mesmerizing way to experience Balinese culture against the backdrop of the ocean and the setting sun.

3. Pura Ulun Danu Beratan

Pura Ulun Danu
Ulun Danu Temple

Often referred to as the “floating temple,” Pura Ulun Danu Beratan is a serene temple located on the shores of Lake Beratan. The temple appears to float on the water, especially when the lake’s water levels are high. Dedicated to Dewi Danu, the goddess of water, this temple is a crucial site for ceremonies related to the water supply in Bali. Its picturesque setting among the mountains and the cool climate make it a refreshing escape from Bali’s coastal heat.

4. Pura Besakih

Pura Besakih
Besakih Temple

Known as the “mother temple,” Pura Besakih is the largest and most important temple complex in Bali. Situated on the slopes of Mount Agung, Bali’s highest volcano, this temple complex consists of 23 individual temples. Pura Besakih is a significant spiritual center for the Balinese people and has been a place of pilgrimage for centuries. The temple’s grand scale and the panoramic views it offers are truly awe-inspiring.

5. Pura Tirta Empul

Visit Tirta Empul
Tirta Empul Temple

Pura Tirta Empul is famous for its holy water springs, believed to have healing properties. This water temple is a place where Balinese Hindus come for ritual purification. The temple features a large water pool where visitors can observe locals partaking in the purification process or even participate themselves. The experience of bathing in the holy waters is considered to be spiritually rejuvenating.

6. Pura Taman Saraswati

Pura Taman Saraswati
Taman Saraswati Temple

Dedicated to Saraswati, the goddess of knowledge and arts, Pura Taman Saraswati is known for its beautiful lotus pond and exquisite architecture. Located in the cultural heart of Bali, Ubud, this temple is a testament to the island’s dedication to beauty and the arts. The intricate carvings and peaceful atmosphere make it a must-visit for those interested in Balinese culture and architecture.

7. Goa Gajah

Goa Gajah
Goa Gajah

Goa Gajah, or the Elephant Cave, is an archaeological site of significant historical value. Dating back to the 11th century, this cave features intricate carvings of Hindu and Buddhist figures. The site offers a glimpse into Bali’s rich past, showcasing the island’s long history of religious harmony and cultural exchange.

8. Pura Taman Ayun

Pura Taman Ayun
Taman Ayun Temple

This royal temple, located in Mengwi, is surrounded by a wide moat, creating a visual effect of a temple floating on water. Pura Taman Ayun is known for its exquisite Balinese architecture, expansive gardens, and the peaceful atmosphere that envelops it. The temple’s layout and design reflect the Bali of yesteryears, making it a fascinating place for those interested in the island’s history and cultural heritage.

9. Pura Gunung Kawi

Pura Gunung Kawi
Gunung Kawi Temple

Set in a valley surrounded by rice fields and lush greenery, Pura Gunung Kawi is an 11th-century temple complex known for its 10 rock-cut candi (shrines) carved into the cliff face. These shrines, which are believed to be dedicated to King Anak Wungsu and his favorite queens, are a remarkable example of Balinese art and architecture. The tranquil setting and the spiritual ambiance of the place make it a perfect spot for reflection and meditation.

10. Goa Lawah

Goa Lawah Temple
Source: Goa Lawah Temple

The “bat cave” temple, Goa Lawah, is one of Bali’s most unique temples, home to thousands of bats. Located in Peselang village, this temple is dedicated to the god of the underworld. The constant presence of bats adds a mystical feel to the temple, making it a fascinating site for visitors. Despite its eerie inhabitants, Goa Lawah is an important place of worship and a popular destination for both tourists and locals.

Each of these temples offers a different aspect of Bali’s spiritual and cultural landscape. From stunning sunsets and holy water springs to ancient caves and floating temples, the diversity of Bali’s sacred sites is proof of the island’s rich heritage. Whether you’re seeking spiritual solace, historical insights, or just breathtaking views, Bali’s temples provide a window into the soul of this enchanting island.

After exploring Bali’s stunning temples, why not end your day with a delicious meal at Red Gunpowder? Our restaurant is a cozy spot decorated to the brim with a relaxing vibe. We’re proud to offer dishes that taste amazing and bring a smile to your face. Our menu presents the best of Indian cuisines in Bali, all made with fresh, local ingredients. Whether you’re in the mood for something traditional or something more familiar, we’ve got you covered. At Red Gunpowder, you can relax in a peaceful setting while enjoying great food, making your temple visit in Bali even more special. Come and join us at Red Gunpowder, where good food meets the vibrant atmosphere of Bali.



Journeying through life with a camera in hand, Rifka Setia Arianti is a passionate explorer of the world's diverse landscapes. Currently settled in Bali as a web designer, her lens captures the essence of her travels, weaving together a tapestry of stories that encapsulate her love for both photography and adventure.

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