Bali 2010 - Uluwatu Temple

I spent quite some time at Alila Uluwatu and almost missed the sunset at Pura Luhur Uluwatu. Luckily I made it there in the nick of time. The sunset there is breathtaking as always.

The parking area outside the temple compound is usually full with cars and tourist vans. There is a short walk to the temple through a footpath. Before going through the gate, don't forget to pay the small entrance charge and put on a sarong which is mandatory for men, or ladies wearing short pants. There is no lighting along the footpath, so it can get a bit dark. Bring a torch if you can.

Pura Luhur Uluwatu is located at one of the most spectacular locations in Bali. This is where you come to watch the famous Bali sunset over the Indian Ocean, and it is quite a sight to behold. Somehow the old temple architects have found a way to harmonize their structures with nature, with the man-made structures serving to enhance the view rather then detract from the natural beauty. This is the lesson that architects often learn from Bali - that it is possible to work with nature and achieve more rather then to compete with it.

The crowd watching the sunset. You can also watch a traditional Kecak dance here, which is quite an experience by itself.

The spectacular coastline at Uluwatu. I particularly love the colour of the sea here.

The Temple itself is very old - it is one of the oldest in Bali. The original temple structure - built of coral stone, is in a ruinous state, which adds to the mystery of the place. Like all the temples in Bali, this is still a fully functioning temple. Devotees come to worship and make offerings here on special occasions, like during the night of my visit. The priest wasn't too happy with my phototaking - but the rest of the devotees didn't mind so much.

Like many other temple areas in Bali, there are lots of monkeys around. Monkeys are considered sacred in Bali, and are featured frequently in Hindu legends. You are advised not to play with, or feed the monkeys. They can be a bit aggressive, so hold on to you handbags, hats and sunglasses or they may grab them.

Pura Luhur Uluwatu is one of the must-visit places in Bali, and it is easy to see why. This is what Bali is about.


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