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Updated by Caleb Falcon on Aug 15, 2014
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Caleb Falcon Caleb Falcon
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Top Religious places in Bali – relish the rich cultural heritage

You should feel Bali's cultural and heritage pulse by visiting at least a few of its temples. Bali has at least 20,000 temples. Some temples could be visited in one journey. Settle in Uluwatu Hotels to revel in Bali heritage.

1

Uluwatu Temple

Uluwatu Temple

From Anantara Bali Uluwatu Resort & Spa, it is a short drive to the Uluwatu temple. This temple is considered one of the six important spiritual centres in Bali. This temple is perched atop a precipice, which is around 70 metres above sea level. The temple has a magnificent sunset background.
If you believe in sunset-inspired spirituality, then Pura Luhur Uluwatu is the place to visit. There you get an opportunity to view Indian Ocean amid Kecak dance performances. Balinese architectural remains are also visible with indigenously designed gateways and sculptures.

2

Pura Besakih

Pura Besakih

Pura Besakih is named as the 'Mother Temple' as it is the holiest temple in Bali. It is a complex housing 23 different temples which hold historical worth. Some temples belong to the 10th century. In 1963, this area barely escaped disaster from a lava eruption in the neighbouring Gunung Agung. Devoted Balinese as well as intrigued tourists frequent this place.

3

Pura Gunung Kawi

Pura Gunung Kawi

Also known as 'Valley of the Kings', this is located in a narrow valley between paddy fields. Balinese have great faith on Pakerisan river which flows through this valley. They believe this river is much cleansing. The rocks feature shrines made to honour the royalty of 11th century.

4

Tirta Empul

Tirta Empul

Priests get holy water from this sacred spring. The common Balinese believe this water brings fortune to life. To get water from this spring, you need to climb. An offering is made first in the temple before climbing for the spring. A villa complex is also located close by, which is reserved for government members.

5

Pura Luhur Lempuyang

Pura Luhur Lempuyang

Another temple of utmost importance in Bali, Pura Luhur Lempuyang is dedicated to the supreme god. This place is said to protect the Balinese from evil forces. Reaching the top of the temple is no cakewalk. You need to climb 1700 steps, which means one and half journey. The Balinese take up this challenge to reach the top and seek divine intervention in their daily chores.

6

Elephant cave

Elephant cave

Ironically, elephants do not roam here. The name was given because of the Elephant River, which also has hardly anything to do with elephants. Inside the cave rest Hindu gods, ganesha and Shiva. History has it that this cave is datable back to the 11th century.

7

Pura Tanah Lot

Pura Tanah Lot

This temple is not for peace and quietude, but its sunset view is unmatchable. Many sellers have hijacked the peace of this area. Nirartha, who lived in the 15th century, is said to have influenced in building this temple. He had spent one night on the rock and had asked the local community to erect a temple.
A restoration plan is also in effect to keep the temple from falling into the sea.