must-see temples in bali

Bali, the island of Gods has thousands of temples.

But there is a few that are “must-see” when you visit Bali.


Taman Ayun

This temple is located in Mengwi about 18 km northwest of Denpasar. It is built in 1634 by a king of the Mengwi dynast. The temple is really big and stand on an island in a river. In Bahasa, the name means “Garden temple in the water”. The temple is surrounded by a moat filled with fishes, there is a trail through a wonderful garden around the temple with many viewpoints to see inside.

Tanah Lot

Tanah Lot temple is located about 30 km west from Denpasar. The temple is built on a big rock located on the ocean front. The temple itself is only possible to access during the low water. The best time to visit this temple is during the sunset, the view is spectacular over the sea when the rose-colored sky goes down in the blue sea.

Tirta Empul

This is one of the largest and most visited water temple in Bali. It is located in north Ubud and was built about 960. The name means “holy water spring”. The temple is dedicated to the Hindu god of water. Inside the temple you find a big pool filled with holy water where you can take a bath and cleanse yourself from the bad spirits.

Uluwatu temple

Uluwatu temple is located on the edge of a 70-meter-high ocean cliff with a stunning view over the sea. The temple was built in the 11 Century.  You also get company of monkeys, they are cute but beware they try to steal your belongings. It is also worth to visit this temple during the sunset because of its beautiful view over the sea. Uluwatu is located about 15 km south of Kuta.

Pura Besakih

This temple is known as the mother temple of Bali and is the most important temple for the island. The temple is located 3000 feet up Gunung Agung in East Bali. This large complex consolidates 23 separate temples. When the Agung volcano erupted last time in 1963 the lava flow missed the temple and it was a sign from the gods that they wanted to show their power but not destroy the Besakih temple.

When you visit temples in Bali you give a small donation around 1-3 €. It is a must wearing a sarong and cover the shoulders when entering a temple.

At least go and visit one temple during your holiday in Bali. It is a big part of the Balinese culture and everyday rituals for the local peoples.