The Uluwatu Temple
The vacation has been awesome so far! For the past few days, we woke up to days of bright sunshine and clear blue skies. On the day we were to visit The Uluwatu Temple, mother nature rewarded us once again with the lovely weather. Perfect for the seaside and sightseeing.
Because of the nice sunny days, we were able to visit many beautiful beaches like Petitenget Beach, and temples like Tanah Lot. All the Best Places to visit in Bali, including The Uluwatu Temple.
We had seen lots of beautiful photos about this place. And were looking forward to be there in person, and experience all the beauty. Today, we will share with you all the charm of this wondrous place.
We will start from the entrance where you can get tickets and loan the sarong to adhere to their dress code. Then to the magnificent view of the cliff and Indian Ocean. And finally the enchanting Kecak Dance performance set against the most beautiful sunset.
And of course, there is the mention of the most Instagrammable spot here. Don’t forget to watch the video, too.
Video of The Uluwatu Temple
Before we continue, I would like to share with you a video I created featuring The Uluwatu Temple. In this video, there is the journey from the entrance to the scenic landscapes, breath taking view of the Indian Ocean, the Kecak Dance performance, and the famous sunset that everyone is talking about. Watch the video now.
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What To Do and See at The Uluwatu Temple?
It was so good to have a private car with driver and tour guide. We arrived in the late afternoon, and the car park was packed. The driver was so considerate that he alighted us near the ticket counter. This was so that he would handle finding a car park lot.
After the car was parked, he came along, and we gave him the money to buy the tickets. It was so much easier with a local speaking to the counter staff. Plus, he knew exactly what to do. After buying the tickets, he advised us on the right dress code.
What is the Dress Code at The Uluwatu Temple?
To dress appropriately and according to the dress code, we had to wear a sarong with a scarf or sash tied around the waist.
Don’t have one? No worries. They do provide the sarong and sash near the ticket counter. Again, the tour guide was so helpful. He taught us how to wear the purple sarong and bright orange sash.
Travel Tip – As a sign of respect, men and women must wear the sarong with a scarf or sash tied when visiting any temples in Bali. Get the ones provided by the temple.
What to See at The Uluwatu Temple?
After getting dressed as required, we walked through the gates of The Uluwatu Temple, down a path and into the temple grounds. It was so exciting to see so many people wandering about, and soaking in the sights.
At The Uluwatu Temple, besides the superb view of the temple, cliff, and Indian Ocean, most visitors were there to see the renowned Kecak Dance performance. The dance was performed against the backdrop of the sun setting into the Indian Ocean.
Our guide informed us that he would queue and get for us the tickets to see the popular and famous Kecak Dance performance. We were so naive and said we would queue with him.
He pointed to a long queue, a very very very long queue. Then smiled and answered that our time was better spent enjoying and seeing the sights. When we saw the queue, we were so relieved to have him help us. Our guide is the best!
Additional Travel Tip – Get the best tour guide who can make your vacation stress free, and a truly enjoyable one. Leave a comment, and I will connect you to the best tour guide in Bali.
How Did The Uluwatu Temple Get Its Name?
Freed from spending over an hour queuing for the dance tickets, we explored the area. As we walked around, a thought came back to my mind. I had always wondered about the names given to each place we visit. And I had wondered how The Uluwatu Temple got its name as well as what it means?
For the past few days before writing this article, I did some research. And I found out that The Uluwatu Temple is also known as Pura Luhur Uluwatu. First, Ulu means ‘land’s end’, and watu is for ‘rock’. This is in the old language. So, Uluwatu means ‘the rock at land’s end’. Isn’t that so cool?
As for the traditional name – Pura Luhur Uluwatu, the word Pura is Sanskrit for ‘city’, ‘walled city’, ‘towered city’, or ‘palace’. And Luhur is ‘something of divine origin’. Put them all together and you have a name that means ‘a city of divine origin’. Such a astonishing name!
How is The View at The Uluwatu Temple?
The view at The Uluwatu Temple is Awesome!
There is the temple that sits at the edge of the steep cliff with the beautiful blue ocean below.
The waves of the ocean continually breaks into white froths of lines as they approach the shores.
There is an entire stretch of path for visitors to walk and appreciate the sights. So many places to take memorable selfies.
What is The Uluwatu Kecak Dance All About?
After about an hour of touring, we returned to the previously agreed meeting place. Our guide has our tickets for us. It was round 6 pm, and he said it was the right time to enter the amphitheater and get good seats. Off we went as he advised.
Travel Tip – There is limited seats at the amphitheater. Arrive early to avoid disappointment.
Tickets or entrance fee of Kecak Dance is Uluwatu is IDR 100,000 per person can be purchased in advance, and arriving early is advised, and the stage has limit space or seating.
There were many places where you can watch the Kecak Dance. Our guide told us that the Kecak Dance at The Uluwatu Temple was the best because of the unique setting. He reminded us to watch out for the sunset that would be unforgettable.
We entered the amphitheater, and there were already quite a number of people seated.
We decided to sit at the top row. Partly to get a bird’s eye view of the performance. Partly to be near the exit because we could imagine the number of people crowding to leave the place after the performance.
Travel Tip – Sit at the first front rows if you wish to get a close up view of the dancers and performance. Plus you can get really creative and memorable photos.
Additional Travel Tip – But if you are afraid of crowds, then sit near the exits so that you can leave easily.
In the next hour or so, more people arrived. The sun began to set. And at one point, after enduring the hot evening sun, we were rewarded with a beautiful sun setting. The entire scene with the sunset, the temple at the edge of the cliff, and the wide Indian Ocean was breath taking.
Travel Tip – Enjoy the sunset. Don’t forget to take some photos to remember this precious moment.
As soon as the sun set, the performance began. There were voices of ‘kecak’ chanted repeatedly. And everyone was craning their necks to catch a glimpse of the dancers as they arrived along the perimeter of the amphitheater.
Then suddenly they enter the center stage. A troupe of male dancers. Their arms extended and shaking into the air. A chorus of ‘kecak’ that filled the entire theater. It was so exciting! Set against the stunning backdrop of the sunset scene, it was spectacular!
For me, it would be my first time watching the Balinese performance art. I love the arts and culture. And what better way for me to be introduced to the Balinese art form than here. I will always remember this moment forever.
There was a story to the dance performance. A story about love and betrayal from the ancient Ramayana epic. I will share more about the Kecak Dance in another post that I would write soon. Watch for that.
Why You Must Beware of the Monkeys at The Uluwatu Temple?
A little side note here for all my readers who plan to visit this beautiful place.
As you enter the grounds of the temple, you cannot help but notice there are many monkeys around. This is because there is a forest nearby where they reside.
There are precautionary signs to warn visitors of monkeys grabbing stuff from people, such as sunglasses, cameras, phones, etc.
Caution – Do not bring valuable items or wear/carry them here. The monkeys find them attractive, and may grab them.
Heed the signs’ warnings. Be careful. Please don’t bring valuable items or wear/carry them; things like expensive sunglasses, earrings or necklaces. Naturally, you would like to bring cameras or take photos and videos with your smartphones.
Travel Tip – Keep your cameras, wallets and smartphones close to you.
Where is the Most Instagrammable Spot at The Uluwatu Temple?
There are quite a few spots that are so Instagram worthy. But to me, the one view that is so awesome is the one shown below. It is the most memorable.
The view is taken from the other cliff, and faced the cliff where the amphitheater is located. You get the high cliffs, the amphitheater, the waves breaking, and the deep blue Indian Ocean.
The Uluwatu Temple – Asia Travel Gems Final Word
When I first read about The UluWatu Temple, and saw photos and videos on the Internet about it, I did think that it would be a very interesting place to visit. What I did not count on was how awesome this attraction is.
I give this place a Thumbs Up!
I loved standing and watching the deep blue waters of the Indian Ocean becoming rows of white froth as they broke into the shores. The sound of the waves as I watched this made the entire scene mesmerizing.
Then I looked up and saw how wide and immense the Indian Ocean is. And I felt this emotion of love and respect for nature. Add the steep cliffs and temple perched at the edge of one of the cliffs, and you have a potent combination of the most awesome scenery.
Plus the Kecak Dance performance. It was my first experience with Balinese art, and I have full admiration for it. I thirst for more, and plan to watch more arts and culture in Bali, and any other places I visit.
I highly recommend visiting this place, and adding another memory of your lifetime.
Where is The Uluwatu Temple?
The Uluwatu Temple is at the furthest south area of Bali, Indonesia. It is in the Pecatu Village that is within the south district of Badung. We stayed at Seminyak, and it took us over an hour to reach there. Thankfully, we had a private car and driver so that we just sat back and relaxed all the way there.
What are the Operating Hours at The Uluwatu Temple?
The Uluwatu Temple is open for visitors daily from 9 am to 6 pm. For worship, it is open 24 hours daily.
When is the Best Time to Visit The Uluwatu Temple?
We were there during the first week of October. And we were told by our guide that the rainy season was supposed to have started. We were very lucky that it did not rain while we were there.
Our guide also told us that the best time to visit Bali and The Uluwatu Temple was between March and September. These are the best month when there is a higher chance of watching the sunset with clear skies.
Travel Tip – Avoid the rainy season. Evening rain can spoil the tour and watching the Kecak Dance performance.
What is the Address of The Uluwatu Temple?
Jalan Petitenget, Kerobokan Kelod, North Kuta District, Badung Regency, Bali, Indonesia
What is the Entrance Fee of The Uluwatu Temple?
This changes over time. When we visited during October 2019, the entrance fee was IDR 50,000 for adult foreigners, and IDR 30,000 for child foreigners. Kindly note that the fee can change over time. Please check before going or at the ticket counter when you arrive.
Travel Tip – Payment for tickets is Cash Only. So, please prepare the right amounts before you come here.
How to Get to The Uluwatu Temple?
There are no mass rapid transit trains in Bali. So, no train service to The Uluwatu Temple. Better to take taxi or get a tour guide. See below.
I understand that there are no buses to The Uluwatu Temple.
As mentioned above, The Uluwatu Temple is really far south of the island. So, if you choose to take the taxi, make sure you have a way back to your hotel or villa. Once again, BlueBird taxis are reliable. You can try to ask for meter. But be prepared to bargain for a fixed rate before you get into a cab.
Grab or Gojek
This is like Uber. Read more about this and other choices of transport in my Indonesia article. My advise – do not choose this option when going to The Uluwatu Temple.
Private Driver/Tour Guide
Our awesome private driver and tour guide had an emergency on the day we were to visit here. So, he arranged for one of his team members to take over for the day. And he was just as good!
He was the one I mentioned earlier in this article, about how helpful he was, and he even stood in the queue to get us the Kecak Dance tickets.
If you need a private driver and tour guide, please contact me. I can connect you to Kadek.
Scooter or Motorcycle
In Bali, you can rent a scooter or motorcycle at a very cheap price. But I do not recommend this. It is dangerous. Many tourists and locals have lost their lives because of this mode of transport.
If you ever choose this, please wear a helmet. Be safe.
Sure. If your hotel is nearby, and within walking distance. Otherwise, best to go by taxi, Grab or private driver.
Before the end of this post, I would like to share a few more tips:
Travel Tip – Please do not take photos directly in front of worshippers
Travel Tip – Please do not step over or tread on offerings called canang sari
Canang sari are offerings that are palm leaves woven into a small box. There are flowers, herbs, money and snacks inside. These offerings are to appease the spirits. Please be careful and watch where you are going.
We have come to the end of this article. I hope you enjoyed reading this.
If you have ANY questions about this post – The Uluwatu Temple, ANY at all, please submit your questions as comments below. I will be happy to help you out.
Wishing you and your loved ones safe and happy travels.