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Bali Heaven Gate: What Is Special About It?

by Mia N

Pura Lempuyang temple in the beautiful Bali is one of the oldest temples in Indonesia, which has recently become a famous destination that attracts a lot of visitors coming here to contemplate its picturesque gate of heaven.

1. Some information about Pura Lempuyang temple

The location of the Sacred Pura Lempuyang temple is at the East of Bali, 90 km far away from central Ubud. This place is one of nine oldest major temples on the mountain remain, specifying cultural and religious imprints of people of Bali. Moreover, it is also among six most sacred temples dedicated to the worship of Acintya – a paramount deity of Hinduism in Indonesia.

Not only is it a holy place, Pura Lempuyang is also well-known for its wonderful outlook and natural environment. Being 1170m above the sea level, it offers visitors a breath-taking beauty of grandiose mountain and the island stretching below. Also, the forest area with a wide range of tropical trees looks really amazing, so are the valleys.

Pura Lempuyang temple in Bali
Pura Lempuyang temple in Bali

This temple is divided into three areas: the outer sanctum is called Jaba Nisan or Nistaning Mandala, the middle sanctum is called Jaba Tengah or Mandya Mandala and Jeroan or Utamaning Mandala is the inner main sanctum.

  • The outer sanctum is signified with white-painted split gate. Some Balinese pavilions are placed in the outer sanctum, included rectangular Bale Gong where they store the gamelan.
  • The middle sanctum is marked by three white-painted portals. The entrance is at the door on the left, while the right one is the exit way, the central door is not opened unless there is a religious ceremony. This is also the place where sacred objects, heirloom and offerings can pass during ceremony time.
  • The most sacred place of the temple is the inner main sanctum. In the courtyard there are some towers and shrines dedicated to different Gods and local deities.

To get to the main temple, visitors will have to climb about 1700 stairs but it is totally worthy. Let hike to reach the temple and let the surrounding view and sound of nature will ease your mind, not to mention the fresh air in the early morning which is really good for your health.

2. The Gate 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 the Bali island is even more stunning when being seen from here. As a result, this gate has risen to be a popular place for taking pictures. Let’s see some check-in photos that have gone viral on Instagram below:

When it comes to religion, the gate is considered a boundary between people and Gods in the belief of Balinese. The combination of superb mountain and fluffing clouds creates a mysterious beauty as an ancient painting that can make people speechless when seeing it.

Is there lake at the Gate of Heaven in Bali?

There might be some Instagram photos of visitors who check-in at the Heaven Gate will make you think that there is a lake in front of the gate and when you capture a photo, there will be a reflection on the water surface that makes the picture more stunning and artistic. Though, it’s just some editing skills of photographers. Many people came and were disappointed because there is no lake and the reflecting photos on instagram is just a trick. You just have to pay money for the photographers and they will simply put a plastic sheet in front of the camera to capture a virtual picture.

The real bali heaven gate
The real Bali heaven gate (source: Hotelvilalumbung’s instagram)

3. Dos and Don’ts guide at Pura Lempuyang Luhur

The Gateway to Heaven in Bali
The Gateway to Heaven in Bali
  • There is no entrance fee when you visit this place, you can donate for it as much as you want.
  • To get in this temple, visitors have to write down their names, birthdays and nationalities to be allowed to enter.
  • Everyone must wear a sarong when they enter the temple. Even you dress neatly, you still have to rent or buy a sarong to be allowed to come in. You should respect by following this rule as sarong is a tradition of Indonesia culture and Pura Lempuyang Luhur is one of the most sacred places in Indonesia. The price to rent a sarong is 10 IDK for one.
  • You had better cover your shoulder while visiting as this is the dress code of the Pura Lempuyang temple.
  • For couples, it is not a good idea if you kiss while you are in this sacred place. Specifically, this is a religious Hindu temple and the action of kissing in public is unacceptable.
  • For photographers, one rule for you is that you are not allowed to bring along a drone to take pictures.
  • Although you have to walk a long way to reach the temple, you shouldn’t complaint about it. It’s a way to show your respect and your willingness to walk a long way to enter a sacred place.
  • Watch your language! This is a holy place so it is advisable that you think and speak carefully. Don’t say anything rude!
  • No food, especially meat when you go to Pura Lempuyang temple. But if you are thirsty, there are a few shops on the way that sell drink for exhausted climbers.
  • Along your way, you can even see some monkeys on the trees looking at you shyly.
  • The best time to visit the temple is early in the morning. At this time you can breathe the fresh air while walking through the trees and listening to the chirping sounds of birds. Also, the sunrise scene from the high view of this temple is spectacular.
  • From January to March, the temple will be busier in the weekend due to the number of locals coming here to attend the ceremony. Therefore, tourists will have less chance to stay long and take pictures of the Heaven Gate. Some visitors claim that they had to wait for two hours queuing to take a photo with the gate.
  • Don’t expect too much at some photos you have seen on Instagram. There is no lake near the gate.

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