Known as the “Island of the Gods”, Bali is steeped in a rich history and heritage, intrinsically linked with the island’s culture and way of life. Away from the tourist resorts by the sea, Bali offers a whole different perspective when travelling inland; sun-kissed beaches are replaced by enchanting tropical greenery and instead of popular tourist hubs centred on dining and entertainment you will find ancient temples, seemingly lost in time.
Among these sacred sites, one that is definitely worth visiting is the Pura Taman Saraswati Temple in Bali, not only because of its heritage, but also because it is one of the best places to witness the magical performance of a traditional Kecak dance. This temple can be found within easy reach of hotel rooms and villas in Ubud. Properties in the area like COMO Uma Ubud are amongst the options travellers can consider. Located near Café Lotus, this water temple is a ‘must visit’ while exploring the main town.
Built to honour Hindu goddess Saraswati (considered the goddess of literature, art and learning), the temple offers free entry though do be mindful to dress conservatively; wearing a sarong and sash is the way to go when it comes to dress-code. One of the most striking elements here is the expansive lotus pond. The sight of this sacred spot framed against lotuses in full pink bloom is quite captivating. As you explore the Pura Taman Saraswati you will come across ornate carvings, sculptures and statues amidst the traditional temple architecture of Bali. The design of the temple is credited to Gusti Nyoman Lempad and it has become a popular place to visit not only for devotees, but those interested in architecture too.
Of course, one of the most popular experiences at the temple is the weekly showcase of Kecak dance. Generally performed each Thursday night at Pura Taman Saraswati’s outdoor stage, this traditional dance performance offers a unique insight into Bali’s rich traditions.
Caleb Falcon is a travel writer who specializes in writing content based on the many exciting world adventures that await intrepid travellers.