Bali is one of the places in Indonesia with the most beautiful churches and the Ulun Danu temple is one of its treasures. Built in 1663, this magnificent temple is dedicated to the service of the Hindu gods of Shiva, Brahma and Vishnu, as well as Dewi Danu, the goddess of the lake. The design of the temple features a blend of Buddhist and Hindu architecture. Translating to the “Temple of Power of Lake Beratan”, the temple floats beautifully on the water, and the surrounding mountains provide a dramatic touch, making it an incredible location for photographers and adventurers alike. The temple is famous for its long and beautiful history, its Balinese architecture and its strategic position. Visit Bali? That’s why exploring its floating temple is worth it.
How to get to the temple
The temple is in the highlands of Bali, just outside the town of Bedugul. There are many ways to get to Ulun Danu Temple. One comes from Ubud, which takes about an hour and 30 minutes. Travelers can also reach the temple from Seminyak, Kuta, or Legian, taking over three hours from either location. However, tourists should take note of traffic during high season or weekends.
- Entry cost: 10,000 rupees
- Opening hours: 7h00-17h00
- Best time to visit: Sunrise during the rainy season (October to April)
Visiting the temple earlier provides the benefits of calm in the area and hardly anyone to distract from the amazing photography opportunities presented by the sunrises.
The architecture of the Temple
The temple features remarkable architecture designed by blending the architectural characters of Indonesia and Bali, including multi-tiered shrines and popular Hindu architectural features. Ulun Danu has four sacred establishments; Lingga Petak, Penataran Mangu, Terate Bang and Dalem Purwa temples. The three main sacred buildings are tiered shrines with different heights; the highest is dedicated to Vishnu and has 11 levels; the second highest is dedicated to Brahma and has seven levels; the shorter temple has three levels and is dedicated to the god Shiva.
The whole design of this temple represents the ideologies of Hindus, and three colors are notable in the temple. The black represents the god of Vishnu, the red represents the god of Brahma, the Creator of all, and the white, symbolizes the god of Shiva, the Destroyer. Locals who visit this temple regularly pray mainly for prosperity, well-being and fertility.
What to live in Ulun Danu?
Not satisfied with the quaint architecture and incredible views? There are other things to discover in this incredibly floating temple. One can explore the surroundings of the temple from a different angle by renting a “Jukung” or “Cadik”, a traditional Indonesian rowing boat. Not in the tradition? There is an adventurous swan boat to visit this beautiful place. If that still doesn’t work, you can always hire a speedboat. The cost may be a little higher, but no one puts a price on fun. So it’s definitely worth it!
- The cost of renting a speed boat: IDR 150,000
Watching the sun set behind these mesmerizing mountains is a great fulfillment. Travelers can also participate in treks around the temple. Places like the Eka Karya Botanical Gardens are must-sees when visiting Ulun Danu Temple. One can choose to combine Ulun Danu with other attractions bordering Bali. For example, combining the temple with the Sekumpul waterfall would be great
Live an incredible culinary experience
There are various places where travelers can enjoy delicious meals around the temple. De Danau is one of those lovely restaurants and is opposite the entrance to the temple. The restaurant prices are very reasonable and the services are good, not to mention the food. The menu is extensive, giving travelers a variety of dishes to choose from. From the restaurant, visitors can enjoy the incredible views of the lake and even take epic photos.
There is another restaurant tucked away just past the ticket office and parking lot; Ulun Danu restaurant. This is the best restaurant around, especially if you are in a hurry to have a quick meal before continuing your visit to the temple. The temple is best known for its delicious seafood, fresh from the lake. The menu is special and serves Plecing Kngkung, Ikan Goreng Ulun Danu and Ikan Panggang Ulun Danu. The restaurant also serves a wide variety of Indonesian, Chinese and Western dishes.
Where to stay around the temple
While the temple is mostly visited on a day drive, some tourists may want to stay and have the best experience of the surroundings of this magnificent building. Geriya Siena is one of the most impressive places when staying in Munduk. Other places to stay include Lovina Life, Summer Guesthouse, Penginapan Sedap Malam, Munduk Moding Plantation Nature Resort & Spa, and Dong Paloh Hostel.
Is visiting Ulun Danu worth it?
Sure! If visiting one of Bali’s beautiful temples is the goal, going to Ulun Danu Temple would provide the best experience, and not just spiritual, but a truly adventurous trip is guaranteed.