Bedugul – Home to Bali’s ultimate lakeside temple

In the highlands of Bali lies this most picturesque and to many, most holy of temples.  Pura Ulun Danu Bratan is devoted to Dewi Danu and used to give offerings to this Balinese god of water, rivers and lakes, to give thanks for the fertility of the region provided by the waters of Lake Bratan upon whose shores the temple is built.

The mountains loom large over Pura Ulan Danu Bratan

The mountains loom large over Pura Ulan Danu Bratan

This is one of the most serene settings for a temple that we encountered in our trip to Bali but again I did find myself being disappointed by the crowds that greeted us when we arrived.  My advice to those looking for the tranquil temple of our imaginings would be to arrive early.

Given the elevation of the lake (1240m above sea level) make sure you bring a jacket – particularly if you’re making an early day of it – as it can be cool compared to the tourist spots in Nusa Dua, Kuta and Seminyak.

Since the site is open from 7am aim early.  I know if I visit the site again I would either make an overnight stay near Bedegul or a really early start from the coast in order to try for one of those quiet dreamy images we see of this temple, and which the early morning light, with potentially some fog, would offer the best chance of obtaining.

The temple complex at Benugul has many statues of fish around the grounds

The temple complex at Benugul has many statues of fish around the grounds

My advice for a visit here is:

  • Arrive early to maximise your Rp30,000 entrance fee, beat the crowds and get the best of the atmosphere
  • Bring something warm to wear
  • Bring a large bucket of patience to deal with the crowds if you plan on arriving later in the day

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