Ulun Danu Beratan Temple

Where To Go | Written By, NOW! BALI |

The rain was falling heavily when I arrived in Candikuning Village. Thick fog enveloped the entire village leaving me with only the sight of the white stripe in the centre of the tarmac. My travelling companion and I decided to stop by the traditional market which is located right after the tall corn statue at the junction. It was a perfect decision, the cold and wet didn’t stop us exploring the market which sold an array of vegetables, handicrafts and spices. We loaded our trunk with fresh veggies and spices before we continued towards Lake Beratan. On arriving at Ulun Danu Beratan Temple, we found buses and cars occupying all of the parking spaces, and people were standing under shelters waiting for the rain to stop while some people braved the weather under colorful umbrellas. I can understand why people get so excited about Ulun Danu Beratan Temple; it’s one of the most iconic temples on the island, pictures capturing the stunning beauty of the temple and surrounding nature appear in many guide books, calendars, postcards and websites about Bali or Indonesia. Lately, an image of the temple has also been printed on Indonesian 50,000 rupiah notes.

TEXT AND Photo by Kartika D. suardana

 

The rain was falling heavily when I arrived in Candikuning Village. Thick fog enveloped the entire village leaving me with only the sight of the white stripe in the centre of the tarmac. My travelling companion and I decided to stop by the traditional market which is located right after the tall corn statue at the junction. It was a perfect decision, the cold and wet didn’t stop us exploring the market which sold an array of vegetables, handicrafts and spices. We loaded our trunk with fresh veggies and spices before we continued towards Lake Beratan.

On arriving at Ulun Danu Beratan Temple, we found buses and cars occupying all of the parking spaces, and people were standing under shelters waiting for the rain to stop while some people braved the weather under colorful umbrellas. I can understand why people get so excited about Ulun Danu Beratan Temple; it’s one of the most iconic temples on the island, pictures capturing the stunning beauty of the temple and surrounding nature appear in many guide books, calendars, postcards and websites about Bali or Indonesia. Lately, an image of the temple has also been printed on Indonesian 50,000 rupiah notes.

Right after the ticket box, a vast beautiful garden awaits, it must be really nice to sit on the bench under the pine trees. Walking toward the lake, before entering the temple compound there is a Buddhist temple which indicates assimilation in religious life in the area. The moment we entered the temple’s gate, we couldn’t stop taking pictures, as the scenery was splendid. Even the rain couldn’t erase the beauty.

Enveloped by lush green hills and the cold green waters of Lake Beratan are two shrines, which when the water levels increase, appear as if floating. The Ulun Danu Temple has a very calm atmosphere. The cool climate of Candi Kuning gives an extra touch to the ambience. The locals come to the temple not only for praying, since there is a wooden bridge at one corner of the compound where you can sit back and relax while the cold water of the Lake Beratan chills your tired legs. Its charm enthralls visitors and attracts people from all over the world. 

The history of the temple goes back to the era when I Gusti Agung Putu established the Mengwi Kingdom. He built the Ulun Danu Beratan as a shrine for the God praised in the Puncak Mangu Temple. The inscription of Babad Mengwi, dated back to 1556 Çaka year, tells that I Gusti Agung Putu was defeated by another knight, and was given to I Gusti Ngurah Tabanan as a hostage. Later, the defeated knight wanted to restore his power and holiness, and had he travelled to Puncak Mangu to meditate and was blessed with the magical power of a knight as a result.  

 

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