Pura Besakih Overview

Besakih Temple which is also known as Bali’s Mother Temple is located on the south-western slopes of Mount Agung. It is Bali’s largest and holiest temple, with at least 86 clan temples and shrines. Each shrine has its own anniversary, therefore there are at least 70 festivals in Besakih every year, offering mesmerizing views backdropped by hills and streams.

Exploring the temple sanctuary of Besakih is a unique trip for the Balinese. The location of Mount Agung lends it a mythical quality and this is what attracts tourists from all over the world. Several stairs lead up to the holy mountaintop, where a clan of temples of various types, status, and function can be found.

Pura Penataran Agung located in the center has white flags for Shiva, the destroyer; Pura Kiduling Kreteg located on the right has red banners for Brahma, the creator; and Pura Batu Madeg located on the left has black banners for Vishnu, the preserver. All three combined signifies the Hindu trinity in Pura Besakih. Many more minor temples in Pura Besakih can be visited, although many of its inner courtyards are only accessible to pilgrims.

Pura Batu Madeg has a center stone that indicates that the Pura Besakih area has been revered as a sacred site from ancient times. An Indian monk, during his isolation in the eighth century, received insights to build shelters for humanity. Many of his followers perished as a result of illness and accidents during this time. It was given the name 'Basuki' after the dragon deity 'Naga Besukian,' who is said to live atop Mount Agung, eventually, the name became 'Besakih.'

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• The largest temple in the comlex of the Besakih Temple, Pura Penataran Agung represents 7 different layers of the universe.
• Capture stunning vistas from the Pura Pengubengan which is about 30 mins walk from the main entrance.
• Source some holy waters from the Pura Batu Tirtha.
• Witness the spot where Lord Vishnu is believed to have descended as per the mythology.
• Visit the Pesamuan Shrine which gets a quadrangular shape with 2 lines of 16 poles known to depict how the powers of Lord Vishnu are interrelated with the world.

How To Reach

  • The temple is located on the southwestern slopes of Mount Agung, which is located at an altitude of around 1,000 meters, and is easily accessible from everywhere in Bali.
  • If you're coming from Seminyak, Kuta, Denpasar, or Jimbaran, then you can take the Kusamba Bypass to Klungkung and then head to Sanur.
  • After that you would need to continue north through Klungkung. Then you would need to turn right at Menanga for Besakih. Depending on travel time and traffic conditions, the journey from Kuta should take about 2 hours.
  • As there are no public transportation options to travel to Besakih Temple, the most convenient option is to hire a car with a driver.

Check Out: Best Bali Temple Tour

Best Time To Visit

The best time to visit the Besakih Temple would be in the early morning or in the evening hours as this is the time when the temple remains less crowded and you will get a chance to explore the complex in detail. You can also plan your visit to the Besakih Temple in the month of April when a temple ceremony is celebrated on the 10th month of the Balinese Calendar.

Suggested Read: Best Things to Do in Bali in April

Other Essential Information

Must visit temples near Besakih Temple:

Gunung Kawi Sebatu: Gunung Kawi Sebatu happens to be a lovely Hindu place of worship that is about a 30 mins drive from Ubud. The temple is surrounded by a variety of lakes and ponds making the whole environment serene and tranquil. It happens to be an ideal spot to overlook the beautiful views all around. The approach to the temple from the west offers breathtaking views of the temple complex. The majority of visitors are more interested in the vistas than in the temple. The Gunung Kawi Sebatu is dedicated to the Hindu god Vishnu and is frequently utilized for religious rites by the locals.

Tirta Empul Temple: If you want to spend a little time in peace and tranquility while on vacation in Bali, don't miss Tirta Empul Temple, which is regarded as one of the greatest sites to visit in Ubud. This temple with a mountain spring was built around 960 AD in the town of Manukaya. There are a variety of locations to explore throughout the area, as well as other ancient remains.

Ulun Danu Batur Temple: The Ulun Danu Batur Temple is a must-see Balinese attraction. It boasts the most magnificent temple complex in Bali, after the temple Besakih, which was built in 1926. Dewi Batari Ulun Danu, the goddess of rivers and lakes, is honored in the temple. This temple is one of Kintamani's most popular tourist attractions.

Also Read: Best Temples in Ubud

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Point of Interest for Pura Besakih
Enjoy breathtaking scenery

Enjoy breathtaking scenery

The Besakih Temple is not only one of the beautiful temples to visit in Bali but also it is the most sought after place of worship that is surrounded by ultimate natural beauty. You will find patches of lush green forest, slow flowing small rivulets, towering mountain ranges and what not to give you a stunning overlook.

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Mount Agung's peak

Mount Agung's peak

Mount Agung, at 3,031 metres above sea level, is Bali's highest peak. The active volcanic crater that dominates East Bali's topography has a significant impact on the region's arid and dry environment.

The southern slopes of the Balinese volcano are home to Besakih Temple. From the summit of Mount Agung, you could soak in the panoramic views of the entire island.

On a clearer day, you can also capture the stunning views of Mount Rinjani which happens to be the tallest peak on the neighboring island of Lombok

Also Check and Book : Mount Agung Sunrise Trekking

Explore the uniqueness of Hindu architecture

Explore the uniqueness of Hindu architecture

The Besakih Temple is one of the most visited Hindu places of worship in Bali and is known for its unique architecture that speaks for the artistic beauty of Balinese temples.During your visit, you will surely come across the Meru Structure and all the elements of the temple have aligned to a single axis letting the spiritual seeker be guided upward and close to the sacred mountain.

The lotus throne in the complex is considered to be the symbolic core of the main sanctuary which dates back to almost the 17th century.

Must Read: Best Temples in Bali

Sweeping rice paddies

Sweeping rice paddies

Besakih Temple in Bali happens to be surrounded by the best of nature. You will find the temple complex nestling in the midst of a breathtaking scenery packed with sweeping rice terraces, rivulets, mountain ranges, and towering peaks.

Check Out: Beautiful Rice Terraces in Bali

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Pura Besakih FAQs

What is so special about the Besakih Temple?

The Besakih Temple of Bali is one of the famous pilgrimage and tourist spots in the Southwestern slopes of Mount Agung. It is one of the largest and the holiest temples on the island that was able to withstand the fierce volcanic eruption in 1963. The temple offers visitors a stunning glimpse of the rich Balinese architecture

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Why is it called the Mother Temple of Bali?

The Besakih Temple is considered as the mother temple of Bali as the grand complex is home to about 86 different clan temples and shrines on the slopes of Mount Agung. Apart from all these, this is one such on the islands of Bali where pilgrims of all castes are allowed to visit and worship.

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Who built the Besakih Temple?

The oldest section of the Besakih temple, Pura Batu Madeg, was erected around a central rock that dates back to megalithic periods. Sri Markandeya, who happens to be a Javanese priest who lived in Bali about the 10th century AD, is thought to be the creator of Besakih.

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