Lempuyang temple also known as Pura Penataran Agung Lempuyang is one of the oldest and most sacred temples on the island of Bali. Located on the slope of Mount Lempuyang, Karangasem, it is one of the holiest places in Bali.
Located on the eastern side of the island, Pura Lempuyang is around 2hrs from Ubud and 3hrs from Kuta.
History: The temples of Mount Lempuyang, represented by Pura Lempuyang Luhur, the highest temple in the area, is grouped one complex of temple which represents the Pura Sad Kahyangan Luhur Lempuyang.
The temple groups are considered as part of the Sad Kahyangan Jagad, or the “six sanctuaries of the world”, the six holiest places of worship on Bali.
According to Balinese beliefs, they are the pivotal points of the island and are meant to provide spiritual balance to Bali.The temple groups of Mount Lempuyang is also one of the group of temples in Bali known as Pura Kahyangan Padma Bhuwana.Each of the temple in the Pura Kahyangan Padma Bhuwana marked each of the eight cardinal directions.Pura Lempuyang Luhur represents the direction of east (purwa) and the color white. This direction is associated with the domain of Balinese the god Iswara.
why is it called Gateway of Heaven?
One of the reasons people decide to visit Bali is to see the Gate of heaven. This horizontally split gate has a mysterious and attractive appearance, including symbols and patterns with Hinduism meaning carved meticulously. Especially, the background of this gate is the view of Agung Mountain, which makes people feel they are touching the clouds when reaching out their hands. Moreover, the beautiful forest of Bali island is even more stunning when being seen from here.
There is no entrance fee but you can donate how much ever you wish. However, you will have to rent a sarong to wear inside the temple which costs 10K IDR per sarong.
Dressing Tip: Everyone who enters the temple must wear a sarong. They will ask you to rent and wear a sarong even if you wear pants. You will also have to cover your shoulders when entering this temple complex.
On the drive up to the temple, the sky was full of colors as if it was a painted canvas. The view of Mt.Agung on the opposite was incredible. The gate is very close to the entrance so it is only a 5-minute walk up the stairs.
There are two sections to the temple, a lower level, and an upper level. The latter is worth the climb up the seemingly infinite staircase.The view from the temple is very beautiful, as you will see an amazing panorama of Mount Agung. The beautiful forest around the temple is known as the lungs of the island of Bali.
If you’re into hiking, this visit is a great blend of an adventurous mountain trekking experience, incredible panoramic views, and the visit of ancient, religious sites.
The lower section has the Gateway to Heaven. It was a peak hour at the time we reached so we had to stand in line for an hour and a half. But the wait was worth it. There will be a photographer available who will take your pictures but you can always ask anyone to help you out.
Tip: Always have your phones and camera fully charged and ready.
Photography tip: You can take pictures using a mirror to make it look like there is a lake in the front of the gate.
The best time to visit the Pura Lempuyang Temple is during the day before sunset, as the view is absolutely breathtaking. Or during the sunrise, so you can take better pictures with less crowd even no crowd at all.
Pura Lempuyang temple is an amazing place that is worth 1700 stairs of climbing. The view from the Heaven Gate is wonderful so if you haven’t checked it out while in Bali, wake up early in the morning and give it a try. I believe you won’t regret it!