Pura Tanah Lot is one of Bali’s most famous and most touristic temples. It is built on a rock off the west shore, depending on the sea level engulfed by the ocean or accessible over slippery rocks.
The temple is devoted to Dewa Baruna or Bhatara Segara, the sea god. It is one of Bali’s seven sea temples, founded in the 16th-century by the Hindu priest Nirartha from Java, to honour the gods of the sea. Each of the sea temples is said to be visible from the next, forming a spiritual protection around the south-west coast of Bali. Nirartha transformed his shawl into a giant snake to protect Tanah Lot from evil spirits. Until today, extremely venomous sea snakes are believed to live at the foot of the rock.
In the 1980 and 90s substantial renovations were carried out to stabilise Tanah Lot, as the rock face was tiring from the constant force of wind and waves. Today, a third of the rock is actually artificial.
Another scenic temple on a rock in the ocean lies just some 200 meters further to the north: Batu Bolong, literally meaning ‘rock with a hole’.
Although not always straightforward, the coastal stretch opposite Tanah Lot and Batu Bolong is relatively easy accessible. For detailed information with photos about accessibility at Tanah Lot contact us.