Pura Besakih, also known as the Mother Temple of Bali, is the largest and most important temple complex on the island of Bali, Indonesia. It is located on the slopes of Mount Agung, the highest volcano in Bali, and is considered to be the holiest of all Balinese Hindu temples.
The temple complex consists of over 80 individual temples, including three main temples dedicated to the Hindu trinity of Brahma, Vishnu, and Shiva. The temples are spread out over a vast area and are connected by a series of stepped terraces, courtyards, and stairways.
The history of Pura Besakih dates back to the 8th century, although much of the current complex was built in the 14th century. It has been through several major earthquakes and volcanic eruptions over the years, but has always been rebuilt and restored by the Balinese people.
Pura Besakih is known for its stunning architecture, which features intricate carvings, sculptures, and reliefs. The temples are constructed using a unique Balinese architectural style known as “meru”, which involves building multiple thatched roofs on top of each other to create a towering structure.
The temple complex is also famous for its festivals and ceremonies, which are held throughout the year. The most important festival is the Odalan, which is celebrated every 210 days according to the Balinese calendar. During this festival, thousands of Balinese Hindus gather at Pura Besakih to pray, offer offerings, and perform traditional dances and music.
Visitors to Pura Besakih are required to wear a sarong and sash as a sign of respect, and are advised to hire a local guide to learn more about the history and significance of the temple complex.
Pura Besakih is an important cultural and religious site that offers a fascinating insight into the spiritual traditions of Bali. It is a must-visit destination for anyone interested in Balinese culture or Hinduism.