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Key Info

Jalan Tirta, Manukaya, Tampaksiring, Manukaya, Tampaksiring, Kabupaten Gianyar

Details

Churches/Religious Sites, Monuments and Memorials, Sightseeing Type
1 to 2 hours Time to Spend

scorecard

  • 4.5Value
  • 5.0Facilities
  • 5.0Atmosphere

While Bali's other temples may be larger or more jaw-dropping, Pura Tirta Empul, which translates to "Holy Water Temple," possesses a unique serenity that cannot be matched. This active prayer site inspires both Balinese Hindus and visitors of different beliefs. While there are several shrines and other structures on the premises, the temple's tranquility is best seen in the large rectangular pool at the complex's center. You'll see worshipers enter the water to pray, so be respectful of the Balinese customs and do not disrupt them. Travelers, too, are welcome to enter the water, known for being a holy mountain spring. Keep in mind, though, that you're expected to enter the water fully clothed (and must wear a sarong as well; they are available to rent for free on-site), so visitors suggest bringing a change of clothes along. 

This ancient temple can be visited from about 7 or 8 a.m. to 5 or 6 p.m. daily. Adults should expect to pay around 15,000 rupiahs (roughly $1) to enter, while children are charged about 7,500 rupiahs ($0.50). Travelers often visit Pura Tirta Empul on their way to or from the village of Kintamani or Gunung Kawi, another religious site. The site is most easily reached by car.

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Travelers rave about Uluwatu Temple's stunning cliffside locale and beautiful architecture. This combination is rendered only more dramatic by the crashing of waves more than 200-some feet below. But don't think that you'll have this isolated sanctuary to yourself. Uluwatu Temple is popular with not only tourists and locals but also some sneaky monkeys – many visitors warned to be on the lookout for the monkeys, who snatch up things like hats, purses and glasses from unsuspecting travelers.

Though many travelers were impressed with the stunning views, they also warned that this is not a good place to come for peace and quiet as it is usually crawling with tourists, especially around sunset. Others were disappointed with the restricted temple access.

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