Tanah Lot Temple in Bali

Tanah Lot Temple (Indonesian: Pura Tanah Lot) is probably the most popular and photographed temple on the island which located in coastal side of Beraban countryside, Kediri sub district and Tabanan Regency.

Tanah Lot Temple stands for earth (Tanah) and sea (Lot), quite appropriate considering its spectacular setting on top of an impressive rock overlooking the sea.

Its one of seven ocean temples on the coast of Bali that create a sort of spiritual bulwark against bad vibes rolling on the ocean currents .

tanah lot temple

Pura Tanah Lot is built on the rock with 3 acre size and reachable in a few minute by walk, because it is just 20 meters from the coastal lip. Tanah Lot Temple is simply among Bali’s not-to-be-missed icons.

This cultural icon is among the seven sea temples located in the coast of Bali and has been contained in Balinese mythology for centuries.

The Tanah Lo Temple continues to stand strong today, although it has had its fair share of aging, as back in the 80's the temple started to crumble and about one third of the rocks at the base of the temple had to be replaced with artificial rocks.

This is an extremely popular tourist destination and the whole area is often very busy indeed, especially in the late afternoons, pre-sunset.

We’re going to peel deep all about Tanah Lot Temple in Bali, but feel free to jump to any section that interests you:

For the Balinese people, Pura Tanah Lot is one of the most important and sacred temple in Bali.

Tanah Lot is derived from the word "Tanah" means land and "Lot (lod / laut)" which means the sea, because it is situated on a rock in the sea and resembles a small island floating on the sea, so the people call it Tanah Lot.

The location is now called as Tanah Lot has been used at a Megalithic period as a place that looked into holy, proven from the existence of menhir.

Pursuant to environmental condition, hence the structure of Tanah Lot Temple is built at irregular reef plain of its angle which is only consisted of one plain yard as Jeroan.

tanah lot temple

Tanah Lot Temple differences with other temples on the island of Bali, Tanah Lot does not have a few pages because it is built on a plain of coral that irregular corners of his home.

Inside the actual temple compound itself there are tiered shrines that follow the fundamental elements of Balinese design where the number of levels constructed are symbolic to the complexities of the faith.

There are other formations within the area that indicate that the site is not only of great religious importance, but also maintains archaeological value.

On the holy day of Kuningan, five days prior to the temple’s anniversary date, the heirloom pilgrimage is one of Bali’s festive parades worth witnessing.

Tanah Lot’s piodalan falls on every Wednesday that follows each Kuningan on Bali’s 210-day Pawukon calendar. At that time all the Hindus from different areas in Bali will come to worship in peace and harmony to invoke.

And Tanah Lot Temple is a Hindu shrine built to worship the God in its manifestation as the God of the sea (God Baruna) to invoke prosperity and the balance of sea and earth.

Tanah Lot Temple History

The myths and sagas of this sacred place are almost as beautiful as the temple itself. After the holy priest Danghyang Nirarta spent the night here, the people of Bali decided to build the Tanah Lot temple at this location.

The story goes that there used to be a bridge from the mainland to the temple but it was destroyed by the powerful sea. Another interesting detail is that there is a cave with a magical spring underneath Tanah Lot. Oddly enough the water in the spring is fresh, whereas the temple is surrounded by salt ocean water.

The history Tanah Lot Temple closely related to the sacred journey from Blambangan (Java island) to Bali island of a holy monk called Dang Hyang Nirartha to spread the teachings of Hinduism, the people also call him Dang Hyang Dwijendra or Pedanda Sakti Wawu Rauh. The ruler of the island of Bali at that time was Raja Dalem Waturenggong around 16th century.

In the Dwijendra Tattwa explained that at one time Dang Hyang Nirartha come back to Rambut Siwi temple in his trip around the island of Bali, where the first when he had just arrived in Bali from Blambangan (Java island) on Çaka 1411 or 1489 AD, he stopped at this place.

After being in Rambut Siwi temple for a while, then he went on his journey that leads toward East (Purwa). Before leaving, DangHyang Niratha performed prayers "Surya Cewana" with people who were there.

After sprinkling holy water (tirtha) against the people involved in doing worship, then he walked out of the temple walked toward the East. The journey traces the South coast of the island accompanied by some of the followers.

In this journey, Dang Hyang Nirartha really enjoyed and was impressed with the beauty of the southern coast of the island of Bali with a natural beauty that is very exciting.

He imagined how greatness Sanghyang Widhi Wasa (God Almighty) who has created the universe and everything in it that can give life to mankind. In his heart whispered that the duty of every creature in this world, especially human beings to express gratitude to God for everything he has been pleased to create it.

pura tanah lot

After a long walk and eventually he arrived and stopped at a beach, the beach consists of rocks and there are also spring, that rocks were called Gili Beo, "Gili" means small island and "Beo" means bird, so Gili Beo means small island of rocks that resembles a bird.

In this area had been led by Bendesa Beraban Sakti who is ruler in Beraban village, then that's where Dang Hyang Nirartha stops and rest, after a few moments of rest and then came the fishermen who wanted to meet with him and bring a variety of offerings for him.

Then after the afternoon, the fishermen begged him to spend the night at their house. However, all the petition was refused by him and he preferred to spend the night in Gili Beo because from there he can enjoy the fresh air, beautiful scenery and release the views freely in all directions.

On the evening before he went to rest, he gave teachings on religion, morals, and teachings of other virtues to the people who came to there, but Dang Hyang Nirartha presence was not favored by Bendesa Beraban Sakti because its teachings are not in accordance with the teachings propagated by Dang Hyang Nirartha, and this led Bendesa Beraban Sakti to become angry and invites his followers to expel Dang Hyang Nirartha of the region.

Then, to protect himself from the aggression of Bendesa Beraban Sakti, DangHyang Nirartha moves Gili Beo to the sea and he created the snake from his shawl to always keep Gili Beo safe from malicious attacks. And after that moment Gili Beo changed its name to Tanah Lot (land in the sea).

After seeing the miracle of Dang Hyang Nirartha, Bendesa Beraban Sakti finally succumbed and became a faithful follower of Him to teach Hinduism to the population, and for his services Dang Hyang Nirartha provide a Kris to Bendesa Beraban Sakti before continuing his journey (The Kris or Keris is a distinctive, asymmetrical dagger from Indonesia.

Both a weapon and spiritual object, krises are often considered to possess magical powers. The earliest krises known were made around 1360 AD and most probably spread from the island of throughout Southeast Asia).

The Kris given to Bendesa Beraban Sakti is called Jaramenara or Kris Ki Baru Gajah, until now The Keris Ki Baru Gajah still exist and saved as well sanctified in Puri Kediri, Tabanan.

At the time DangHyang Nirartha advised the people to build a temple (parahyangan) on Tanah Lot Temple because according to his sacred inner vibrations and supernatural guidance that this place is a good place for a worship to the God, from this place then people can adore greatness of God in manifestation as the God of the sea to invoke the safety and welfare of the world.

Tanah Lot Temple Entrance Fee

Visits to the Tanah Lot Temple are subject to an entrance fee of IDR 20,000 for (adult) domestic tourists, and IDR 60,000 for (adult) foreigners.

IDR 10,000 for (child) domestic tourists, and IDR 30,000 for (child) foreigners.

Tanah Lot Temple Festival and Ceremony

The ceremony Tanah Lot temple is held every 210 days (6 months) and according to the Balinese calendar, the anniversary of Tanah Lot temple is held on the Buda Wage Langkir, four days after Kuningan Day.

tanah lot temple festival

Before entering the temple, the prayers must first pray at Beji Kaler, Beji Kaler is a sacred spring which is located just below the Tanah Lot temple.

Before the prayers go to the main temple they must pray in advance here and drink the holy water of this spring in order their souls to be cleaned and sanctified before entering and praying in the main temple.

During the ritual in Tanah Lot temple, Balinese people would come to pray and even some of them also come from several regions in Indonesia. The festival will take place (nyejer) for 3 days.

Tanah Lot Temple Highlights and Features

At the entrance lane to Tanah Lot Temple you will find beautiful architectural Balinese gate and many art shops offering local handicrafts besides other products like T-shirts, Balinese sarongs, hats, sandals, accessories, paintings, woodcarvings, and more. Here you will also find stalls selling food and drinks.

The tourist area of Pura Tanah Lot near the rock is very well managed for visitors. It has a parking area, toilets, art shops, restaurants, hotel, open stage, tourist information centre, and security and safety services. Your ticket also covers insurance against accidents.

tanah lot temple gate

There are many restaurants here where you can enjoy a sumptuous breakfast or lunch. Experience the serenity of the tropical sun slowly disappearing beyond the horizon and the wide open ocean, and listen to the sound of the soothing waves crashing on the shore. It will be an incredible memory to treasure all your life.

After centuries of large waves persistently crashing at its rock base, Tanah Lot Temple faced the constant threat of erosion, reaching a significant decline in 1980.

The authorities carried out preservation efforts to Tanah Lot and other historical sites island-wide with aid from the Japanese government. Fully restored, a third of the present Tanah Lot is actually artificial rock.

At high tide, waves flood the causeways making it impossible to cross. At low tide, you may cross to view the rock base where the legendary ‘guardian’ sea snakes dwell in crevices around the Tirta Pabersihan fountain.

This natural spout is the source of holy water for all the temples in the area. Priests at the fountain bless visitors by sprinkling holy water over their heads. You can cup your palms and take a sip to prove it is amazingly fresh water.

Onshore temples include the Penyawang, a spiritual proxy to Tanah Lot Temple that hosts pilgrims when the main offshore temple is inaccessible during high tide.

Other smaller temples around the site host prayer sessions for various aspects of the villagers’ agrarian life, from good rice harvests to rites of passage.

batu bolong temple tanah lot

North of Tanah Lot is Batu Bolong, similarly built on a rock formation with a ‘hollow’ overpass linking to the mainland.

Convenient pathways and well-kept tropical gardens line the grounds from Tanah Lot Temple to Batu Bolong, with resting spots offering shades and good viewpoints to both outcrops.

Tanah Lot Temple Opening Hours

Tanah Lot Temple is open from 7 am to 7 pm. We’d recommend you get there as early as possible, as the place gets really crowded from 10 am.

But if you visit Tanah Lot Temple for sunset, recommend you get there after 4 pm and before 6 pm. Due to sunset view and this consider the best time to visit.

Best time to visit Tanah Lot Temple

Tanah Lot Temple is a very busy and crowded place, especially on sunny days, there are hundreds even thousands of tourists around trying to get the best views of the temple from various angles.

So the best time to visit the temple is during the low seasons (mostly from mid-January to mid-April and mid-September to mid-December) during these periods there are lesser crowds and accommodation/flight costs are fair.

Pura Tanah Lot Temple

The best time of the day to visit the temple is during the evenings at sunset, as the view is absolutely breathtaking, however, expect more crowds during this time.

Another good thing to note is that a Tanah Lot Temple Tour is best done during low tides, because this makes for the best angle views and you are allowed to walk to the base of the temple and be blessed by the priests there.

For those who love photography, at this time is the golden hour or magic hour and if the weather is good we can capture an amazing sunset and enjoy unforgettable spectacular and astonishing sundown sight.

Various locations offer stunning views of the temple, making this a very photogenic destination. Depending on the position of the sun, the light is perfect for taking beautiful photographs.

tanah lot temple sunset

Take an immediate right at the entrance of the temple area and walk through the garden to the top of the hill.

From this higher vantage point you will have an even better view of the temple – huge waves crash on the rocks, creating that perfect postcard picture.

Visitors can stay close and walk beside the temple when low tide but it's not recommended and too dangerous when high tide.

Tanah Lot is very suitable to serve as a family holiday and also there are adequate facilities such as hotels, restaurants, sunset terrace, Tanah Lot cultural park, art shops, parking area, emergency facilities, security facilities, toilets, rest area, and information center.

Tanah Lot Temple Address & Map Location

Tanah Lot Temple is located at Jl Tanah Lot, Beraban village, Kediri sub district, Tabanan Regency, Bali, Indonesia.

Here is an accurate position of Tanah Lot Temple on the Google map

How to Get to Tanah Lot Temple ?

Tanah Lot Temple sits around 20kms from Denpasar, south of Tabanan city and west of Canggu. It can be reached by taxi or by hiring a scooter, though many visitors do find it more convenient to visit the temple as part of an island tour.

To get to the temple its take around 45 minutes from Kuta, Legian, Seminyak and 30 to 40 minutes from Ubud.

Whether you drive by own car and coming from from Denpasar on the main highway and arriving in the town of Kediri, you will certainly not miss the large sign at the main intersection announcing the southwest turn to Pura Tanah Lot.

Once there, visitors must walk along pathways that are dotted with stalls selling souvenirs before arriving at the beach in front of the temple.

Tanah Lot Temple Tours

Most tourists hiring a car and driver for the day to visit Tanah Lot, along with the other popular temples as they are far apart from each other.

The road to Tanah Lot temple can be dangerous, hence this is advisable. Alternatively, you can a day tour during your holiday in Bali.

There are plenty of a day tours in Bali which combine the Tanah Lot Temple with other popular places like Alas Kedaton, Ulun Danu Temple, Taman Ayun Temple, Kintamani Volcano, Ubud, jatiluwih Rice Terraces, Bedugul and much more.

Most of the tours that we listed below are included of all the entrance fees, donations, meals, taxes, and comfortable air-conditioned car transfer with knowledgeable Balinese driver/guide.

1. Tanah Lot Temple Sunset Tour

Tanah Lot Temple Sunset Tour is the top-selling half day trip in Bali. The itinerary covered Taman Ayun Temple or Pura Taman Ayun, as the Royal Temple of Mengwi Empire. And Alas Kedaton Monkey Forest, which is dwelt by the group of monkeys where there is a secret Hindu temple residing in this forest surrounded by the pure natures.

Tanah Lot Temple Sunset Tour

And the tour price are included all the entrance fees and tickets, dinner, tax, and comfortable air-conditioned car transfer with expert knowledgeable Balinese guide. More Details ...

2. Bedugul and Tanah Lot Temple Tour

This is one of the best day trip in Bali. That take you to Bedugul is a mountain lake resort area in Bali, located in the centre-north region of the island near Lake Bratan on the road between Denpasar and Singaraja the area covers the villages of Bedugul itself, Candikuning, Pancasari, Pacung and Wanagiri amongst others. In the area there is three crater lakes Lake Bratan, Lake Buyan, and Lake Tamblingan. And major sites in Bedugul are the Pura Ulun Danu Bratan Temple.

bedugul tanah lot temple tour

On the way, wonder at the verdant rice terrace and spot the alpine vegetation. Gain a fascinating insight into the culture of the real Bali as you visit the local Candi Kuning Market. While here, enjoy the array of fresh fruits, vegetables, spices, and exotic flora, including wild orchids and roses. and visit its most photographed temples of Taman Ayun and Tanah Lot Temple More Details ...

3. Kintamani Volcano and Tanah Lot Temple Tour

The most popular a day tour in Bali is perfect choice for those have limited time in Bali. Combining three most famous tourism sites in Bali in to single day trip, such us; Kintamani Volcano, Tegenungan Waterfall, and Tanah Lot Temple.

kintamani volcano tanah lot temple tour

On the way, discover Bali's unique cultural heritage and scenic natural surroundings. Wonder at the incredible sacred cave of Goa Gajah. Explore traditional artisan villages, waterfall view, and rice terraces. Catch glimpses of Mount Batur's rugged slopes while having lunch, and witness the splendour of a sunset as the setting sun paints the waters of the ocean More Details ...

Tanah Lot Temple Dress Code

As we know when you visit of any temples in Bali, both men and women should wear a sarong, scarf or sash tied around the waist.

But when you visit Tanah Lot Temple there is no dress code required, as visitor not allowed go into temple except worshipper.

Best & Cheap Hotels Near Tanah Lot Temple

Tanah Lot hotels focus on the area in the Tabanan regency that is best known for its temple landmark, Pura Tanah Lot. As one of Bali's most important directional temples, Tanah Lot continues to serve Balinese Hindu pilgrims since the 15th century, as well as lure world travellers to its breathtaking sunset opportunities.

tanah lot hotel

Various accommodation choices range from budget to luxury that are catered to both business and leisure travellers, and rooms are clean and cosy, offering a quiet escape from the bustling scenes of the city.

  1. Natya Hote Tanah Lot (US$ 55 per night)
  2. Dewi Sinta Hotel and Restaurant Tanah Lot (US$ 21 per night)
  3. Kubu Kedungu Villas (US$ 42 per night)
  4. D'sawah Villa (US$ 37 per night)
  5. Nirwana Villa Estate (US$ 44 per night)
  6. Villa Tantangan Tanah Lot (US$ 1,645 per night)
  7. Villa Nangka Tanah Lot (US$ 198 per night)
  8. Villa Kailasha - an elite haven (US$ 929 per night)
  9. Silversand Villa (US$ 357 per night)
  10. Cokelat Guest House (US$ 28 per night)

Tanah Lot Sunset Terrace

Tanah Lot Sunset Terrace is located in the north of Tanah Lot Temple which provides the perfect setting to create unforgettable moment of sunset.

Visitor can find this place by walked as long as pathway that close with Tanah Lot Temple area.

This place has restaurant with complete fasility, puppets painting museum, money changer, and many balinese gift outlets.

Enjoy a luxurious breakfast, lunch and dinner, taste special Balinese food and drinks, and watch the tide flow in.

At high tide the rock of Tanah Lot appears like a boat floating on the waves. On full moon nights, spend an unforgettable romantic evening on the terrace with your loved one.

Holy Snakes at Tanah Lot Temple

When you visit Tanah Lot Temple don't be missed to see the holy snakes and you can find it under high cliffs of the temple.

The scientific name of this snake is Bungarus Candidus, highly venomous sea snake that has a color such as black and white circular rings on its body.

The holy snake in Tanah Lo Temple are known to protect the area and its people from evil and in return the people respect, protect and leave the snakes to exist in their natural habitat.

holy snake tanah lot temple

Over the years, ancient mythology on this has been analysed and the findings are very interesting. They can prove through the texts that the nests of these holy snakes only exist in Tanah Lot and they are not in danger of becoming extinct.

Visitor can even touch this snake without worrying counterattack of the snake and of course we will be accompanied by someone who understands the character of the snake.

Another belief that adds elements to the mythological of holy snake of Tanah Lot Temple is by touching it while praying then what we pray will come true, a mythology dependent we believe it or not.

Restaurants around Tanah Lot Temple

When visit Tanah Lot Temple and wish to comes to dining, is there several restaurants which features plenty of laid-back dining venues offering an ample selection of cuisines to sample.

tanah lot restaurant

Here is our guide to the best restaurants around Tanah Lot Temple for those longing for a break from everyday hustle-and-bustle while enjoying a romantic meal in one of the most beautiful corners of Bali.

  1. Dewi Sinta Restaurant
    Situated in Tanah Lot area that is well known for its beautiful sea temple and stunningly beautiful sunset and just 5-minute walk to Tanah Lot Temple.
  2. Sizzle Wraps
    Located on Jalan Raya Tanah Lot, Sizzle Wraps is a tiny eatery that serves the best vegetarian and vegan wraps you might find anywhere in Bali.
  3. Warung Disini
    Located on Jl. By Pass Tanah Lot, Warung Disini is a local eatery that caters to western tastes, offering a wide range of international fares to sample.
  4. Ocean Restaurant
    Set in the hearth of Tanah Lot, a famous tourist destination in Bali Island. It is a local restaurant offering the variety of menus from the majority of Asian and Indonesian.
  5. Sushi Surf
    Located on Jl. Pantai Balian, Sushi Surf is a midrange Japanese restaurant located right on the beach, providing magnificent views of Balian beach.
  6. Warung Guek
    It is a local restaurant offering the variety of menus from the majority of Asian and Indonesian. Located on Jl. By Pass Tanah Lot, within 5 minutes drive to Tanah Lot Temple.

Art Market at Tanah Lot Temple

Like most of the tourist sites in any places in Bali, this spot also has shopping area call Tanah Lot Art Market which located just along the way to Tanah Lot Temple area.

tanah lot art market

This art market is always crowded with domestic and international shoppers looking for a great deal, from unique motif batiks, intricate Balinese carvings to the most iconic knick-knacks you won’t find outside the island.

Art Market at Tanah Lot Temple offer the most unique shopping experiences, where you can discover a treasure trove of artworks and handicrafts by talented local craftsmen, all at bargain prices!

Tanah Lot Beach

Tanah Lot Beach is a beautiful rocky Beach with black sandy coastline and famous throughout the world because of the unique Hindu temple set on the big rock and encircled by the sea water.

This spot is many visited by tourist everyday from over the world especially during sunset that creates the breathtaking view and romantic nuance.

tanah lot beach

It is one the favorite of surf spots in Bali Island due to blessed by the great wave and powerful. The surfers must take of the wave from right to left side surf direction.

In between of the cliff there is a surf breaks, which is look really dangerous from a shore. To paddle out you can jump from the cliff, or you can go down to the beach first and paddle out. Fun and easy waves. Good for intermediate up to experienced.

Beach Side Waterfall Near Tanah Lot Temple

Along the sandy Melasti beach near Tanah Lot Temple lies a hidden treasure a waterfall. Capture a shot from the shoreline of the sun setting as the water streams back into the ocean.

melasti waterfall tanah lot

Within 15-minute walk away from Tanah Lot, head over to the beach after visiting the Tanah Lot temple. You’ll be safe from the crowd as Melasti Beach is one of Bali’s best-kept secrets (until now).

Holy Water Cave at Tanah Lot Temple

There is holy water its located cave just below of Tanah Lot Temple, and this source of freshwater one of the magic things of the temple.

The freshwater itself believe coming from the center of the sea which is a holy water and is used to get a blessing for a daily routine for locals as well as worshipper who came to the temple for praying.

holy water cave tanah lot temple

The holy water at Tanah Lo Temple is also believed can heal sick people and give fertility for a couple who wish to have children.

There is no entrance fee to enter the holy water cave. However for the visitor who wishes to donate for maintenance can simply put the donation in the box.

Kecak Dance in Tanah Lot Temple

Another attraction not to miss in Tanah Lot Temple is the traditional Balinese dance call Kecak which is scheduled after the sunset.

Several tourist attraction or temple in Bali schedule Kecak Dance show like Uluwatu Temple, Batubulan village, Ubud, and ect. But Kecak Dance in Tanah Lot Temple is really not to miss.

kecak dance tanah lot temple

Kecak dance is played mainly by men, where the number of players in the tens or more dancers who sit in line and a circle with a certain rhythm voices calling for "cak", raising his hands.

This kecak dance created in the 1930s by Wayan Limbak and with a German painter Walter Spies. They create a dance based on ancient traditions and take sanghyang from parts Ramayana story.

This dance became popular when Wayan Limbak the Balinese dancer with her tour around the world to introduce the Kecak dance. Until now become a dance Kecak Balinese art fame.

Kecak Dance in Tanah Lot Temple take from Ramayana Epic as the theme of their dance, especially the episode of Prince Rama and his wife Princess Shinta and his brother Laksamana as the legal heirs of the throne were exiling themselves to the forest to give his brother Bharata to sit on the throne.

This exile has brought the situation become fatal for them when Princess Shinta was abducted by the king of Demon of Alengka Pura.

The abduction of Princess Shinta is the start of the big war called Bharata Yudha between Prince Rama assisted by the fleet of monkeys soldiers and the demon fleet of Rahwana of Alengka Pura.

The Kecak Dance in Tanah Lot is also equipped with a dance that uses a means of fire. This was demonstrated when Hanuman rescue Dewi Shinta.

Ravana who know their arrival, finally ordered his men to burn Ramadewa and Lakshmana. By the time they are having difficulty, Hanuman came to save them from the terrible fire that followed.

After that Hanuman and the other monkey troops, destroy fire that created by Ravana.

The audience will be amazed by the choreography of the dance, the singing, and the trance. Expect to see a danger performance. A priest will put a spell and make one man trance.

The Kecak dance show is held at the open stage near Tanah Lot which started daily start at 06:30 pm and will be finished at 07.30 pm.

To watch Kecak Dance, the visitor can buy the ticket in Tanah Lot Temple ticket booth inside the temple area.

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