Besakih is known as the Mother Temple of Bali

Besakih is known as the Mother Temple of Bali

Besakih is known as the Mother Temple of Bali. Besides being the most important temple for the whole of the island, another attraction of Besakih, actually a complex of temples, is its dramatic location on the southern slopes of Mount Agung, Bali's tallest mountain.

Like most major temples in Bali, the area surrounding Besakih is starting to take the shape of a small town, with many souvenir and eating shops.

Besakih is located in the eastern Bali regency of Karangasem.

Besakih temple complex consists of at least 18 separate temples and numerous other shrines. Each temple has a specific purpose, whether it is for the worship of a particular god, for the use of the people of a particular region of Bali, or for the use of a particular caste.

The entry fee to Besakih is Rp 10,000 per person. Parking fee is Rp 5,000. You will have to pay both fees even if you are not allowed to enter the temple if there is a religious event.

The only way to move around the temples of Besakih is on foot. The complex gradually rises up the slopes of Gunung Agung and there are countless flights of steps. Be ready with a pair of comfortable shoes.

Most temple areas will be off-limits when religious events are being held. When there is nothing happening, you will probably be able to go in and look around from the side of the temple compound.

Getting there:
The usual way to get to Besakih is from Semarapura or better known by its old name Klungkung. Besakih is about 20km north of Klungkung and the road is winding at several stretches.

There is also a "back" road to Besakih from Kintamani and the hour-long drive is beautiful as you pass through forests, villages and fields as you move from the slopes of the Batur caldera to that of Mount Agung. The road meets the main Besakih-Klungkung road just before the entrance to Besakih.

If you are coming from the eastern end of the island, such as from Amed, Tirta Gangga or even Candidasa, you can also get to Besakih by taking a smaller inland road from Amlapura. The road goes through small villages like Selat and the Bukit Putung lookout, and meets the Besakih-Klungkung road at Rendang, where you turn north/right to head to Besakih.

Bemos run to Besakih from Semarapura/Klungkung. They are most frequent in the morning. You may have to change bemos at Rendang halfway between Semarapura and Besakih.

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