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Make Your Bali Holidays Memorable by Exploring Tanah Lot

06.20.2019 · Posted in Writing and Speaking
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The most popular destination in Indonesia, Bali has some wonderful surprises in store for its tourists. One of the delightful aspects of this Indonesian island is the rich cultural heritage that it has managed to preserve over the years. While it is true that Bali is known internationally for its beaches and exciting nightlife, you’ll also find its fabulous cultural attractions worth exploring. Among them are the amazing ancient temples that are visited by the locals and tourists alike.

One of the most charming temples you can visit during your Bali holidays is the Tanah Lot temple. It is well-known for its unique setting, as it is located on an outcrop surrounded by waves of the sea. The name of this temple has been derived from this outcrop, which was originally known as ‘Tengah Lod’. The site of this temple onshore has smaller shrines and has restaurants, shops, and other leisure facilities nearby. Most of the tours that take tourists to the central and western regions of Bali include a visit to this temple. It can be reached by getting to the Beraban village in the Tabanan regency, which is at a distance of about 20 kilometres to the north-west of Kuta.

Local legends state that the outcrop, on which, the temple has been built was shifted into the sea by a high priest from the Majapahit Kingdom of East Java, known as Dang Hyang Nirartha. He had travelled to this island in the late 15th century for spreading Hinduism. Upon arriving at a beautiful spot, he established a shrine honouring Baruna, the sea ***. He began sharing his teachings with the villagers of Beraban and was met with strong opposition from the village chief. When the chief arrived with his loyal followers to stop the priest, he resisted by shifting the rock on which he meditated into the sea and invoked the sea snakes to guard its base.

Upon witnessing the high priest’s powers, the village chief was humbled and vowed allegiance to him. Before leaving the place, Nirartha presented him with a holy kris dagger. The Kediri royal palace has retained this dagger as a part of its sanctified heirlooms. On the holy day of Kuningan, you can witness one of the island’s most festive parades of the heirloom pilgrimage that involve transportation of the heirlooms to Luhur Pakendungan temple. This temple was Nirartha’s former site of meditation. You must dress and act respectfully while visiting this temple as is expected from any of its visitors.

As a result of large waves constantly brushing against the rock’s base, it faced the threat of erosion and fell into a decline in the 1980s. This prompted the authorities to carry out massive preservation works on Tanah Lot and other historic sites with great assistance from the Japanese government. In the years that followed, this site was fully restored. A considerable portion of Tanah Lot is an artificial rock today. While visiting this temple, you’ll also come across well-maintained tropical gardens and art shops.

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