3 In Archaeology + History/ Culture/ Indonesia/ Religion + Spirituality/ Travel

Gunung Kawi – Rocky Temple – Bali

Gunung Kawi is near Ubud, Bali and is more often called “Rocky Temple” to the tourists. When I was planning this portion of the trip, all I really needed to visit was the Holy Spring Temple but when we decided to rent a private car for our adventures near Ubud they said that we could visit three sites for the same price as one, so this was their recommendation. We knew nothing about it when we left in the morning, but this was our first stop and it was incredible!

You start out on top of this area where you walk through a series of market stalls with colorful sarongs, beautiful crochet tops & bikinis and intricate wood carvings. It then opens up to these phenomenal views.


This sign had Stacey and I cracking up “Probably the best view in the world”. I do have to admit, it’s definitely up there in the views I’ve had the pleasure of seeing. IMG_2315 IMG_2309

We were in Bali near the Rice Festival which I really wanted to see in practice, but it was celebrated in the private temples. You can see this woman was preparing because she has rice on her forehead as part of a blessing that she received. collage

When you pay your admission you receive this red piece of cloth that you are supposed to tie around your waist. Then, at the entrance of the temple there is this jar of holy water that you dip the bamboo brush into and sprinkle the water on your head. I liked that they did this because it was a great reminder that this is a holy place and deserves respect.

This temple is from the 11th century and is a funerary complex and temple. There are 10 of these massive shrines cut into the cliffs. IMG_2329

This view is one of the most amazing things I saw of the entire trip. I felt like I was in heaven. The spirituality, the nature, the history of this place was almost overwhelming.

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Balinese Hinduism has its own set of unique cultural aspects, like their art and iconography.  IMG_2370 IMG_2374 IMG_2381 IMG_2382

I can’t wait to come back here with Matt so I can see what is back here from his photos!

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Four of the massive shrines.
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These fountains line the front of the biggest section of the shrines. There is truly something about these Balinese temples that are just magical.  IMG_2400 IMG_2402

This small offerings are made daily and placed all over Bali. To small statues, in temples, family shrines… All over the place. Hinduism in Bali was different to us. The dedication here was beautiful. Each person we encountered knew so much about their religion and left offerings multiple times each day.

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This waterfall is to the left of the longer line of stone shrines with fountains and you can walk up really close to it. IMG_2481

There are also rice fields that you can walk through so you can get closer to this and see how it’s grown.

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For the first temple visit during our time in Bali I was blown away. I have never seen spirituality, nature and culture come together the way that it does in Bali. It’s unreal and is one of the many things that made Bali one of my favorite places I’ve ever visited. I’m so excited to share more about Bali!

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    Sandy N Vyjay
    March 8, 2017 at 8:18 pm

    A temple nestled in the womb of nature! The shrines were majestic. And probably the best view in the world, is true to it’s word. I have never seen such an exotic untouched view! The entrance to the temple was what blew me. I will surely visit this on my trip to Bali!

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