Tanah Lot is one of Bali’s directional temples and is situated on a rock in the ocean, just offshore. From all the beautiful temples on Bali, Tanah Lot is quite special and for anyone of the “must-things-to-do”.
It is said that Pura Tanah Lot has been built on the recommendation of an important Hindu priest Danghyang Nirartha in the 16th century, who has shaped Bali’s Hinduism and religious architecture for the centuries to come.
Tanah Lot is a very important site for pilgrimages and plays an important role in Balinese spiritualism and mythology. The rock that the temple sits on has been eroded by the ocean over the centuries and is now undergoing a process of restoration.
Location & Setting
The temple is located just offshore in the south-west of Bali on a rock which gets surrounded by the sea during high tide. It’s roughly a 30-40min drive by cab from Seminyak (ca. 120.000Rp. with metered Taxi).
The entire area around Tanah Lot is regarded as a holy to the Balinese. There has not been much tourism development in this part of the island but the Nirwana Golf resort just next to the temple.
Good to Know
This is an extremely popular tourist destination and the whole area is often busy, especially in the late afternoons, pre-sunset. The area between the car park (Rp 5,000 per vehicle) and the beach adjacent to the temple is a maze of souvenir shops selling just about every Balinese trinket imaginable. Don’t forget to bargain.
Once you have fought your way through the souvenir vendors to the beach, you will see the magnificent temple perched on a rock just a few meters offshore. There is a footpath to the raised cliff area just to the south from where the views of the temple and the sunset behind it are outstanding. Photo-opportunities abound.
Most people stay around one hour. During high tide, the rock is completely surrounded by water. Best time to visit is during low tide (afternoon/evening) which allows you to get very near, watch the holy snake in the cave (in a box!) and take some amazing pictures at the shore and from the coastline.