Batuan Temple, referred to locally as ‘Pura Puseh lan Pura Desa Adat Batuan’, is a focal landmark in the namesake village of Batuan, well-known for its traditional Balinese arts and paintings. Within only a 10km transfer south from Ubud central, the site features a grand complex of shrines laid out within its 0.65Ha complex. Well preserved sandstone bas motifs and well-preserved traditional Balinese temple architecture are its main draws.
This 11th century temple faces a separate large communal hall from where most visitors start their visit. When there’s no major temple ceremony on, which otherwise occupies this space with towering fruit and flower offerings, it is filled with local artists and craftsmen displaying their latest work, from batiks to framed paintings and statuettes. With a compulsory sash and cloth around your waist, you can cross over the road to enter the main temple grounds.
Up the five-tiered ‘candi bentar’ gate of Batuan Temple, you’ll come across various reliefs depicting mythical Balinese figures and floral themes, as well as statues depicting the Hindu trinity, Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva further inside. A series of multi-tiered thatched-roof shrines within the temple’s inner courtyard are set in a layout that is typical of all large temple complexes in Bali. The temple pavilion’s wooden beams and ceilings are heavily engraved and gold gilded.
A visit to any temple in Bali is best during their celebrations. If your visit to Batuan Temple doesn’t coincide with any ‘piodalan’ anniversary, you may also check out the village’s daily barong dance shows, occasionally featuring other traditional Balinese dance performances at a purpose-built stage nearby.
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