Uluwatu Temple In Bali – Famous Cliff Sunset At Uluwatu Bali
The Pura Uluwatu Temple is an iconic seaside pagoda that sits on a cliff in the far south corner of Uluwatu Bali.
This 1,000 year old temple is one of Bali island’s most famous tourist sights because of its impressive cliffs, sunset views, traditional Kecak fire dance, and the notoriously sneaky monkeys that like to hang out near the temple.
Uluwatu Temple is easy to visit from Kuta and the other popular tourist areas in Bali, and I’d rate it as a must do! The whole experience is memorable.
This travel guide will explain how to get to Uluwatu, current ticket prices, when to visit, and everything else you need to know before you go!
Where To Stay
History Of Pura Uluwatu
According to ancient Balinese manuscripts, the history of Uluwatu Temple dates back to at least the 11th century, and probably even earlier.
It was established by a Javanese Hindu priest named Empu Kuturan, and then expanded by Dang Hyang Nirartha, who spent months meditating by the seaside cliffs of Uluwatu before building the temple grounds that sit there today.
Pura Uluwatu was thought to be a portal to heaven, and the Balinese Hindus today still consider it one of the most important temples on the island.
Uluwatu Temple – What To Expect
Visiting Uluwatu Temple is pretty straightforward and you don’t need a guide, although it doesn’t hurt to have one.
You actually can’t go inside the temple itself or see the pagoda up close, you only view it from the outside while walking along the cliffs. That may be a bummer for some, but I think the cliff views are the best part anyway.
It’s a bit of mesmerizing Bali magic to see the waves crashing on the 250-foot high limestone cliffs at Pura Uluwatu while the sun sets over the Indian Ocean. The ancients picked a perfect spot for this pagoda.
Uluwatu Bali is one of the best spots on the island to watch the sunset, so hundreds of people (and monkeys) flock here for sunset every evening. It gets pretty crowded, and always makes me wish tourists would branch out to some of the less known temples in Bali.
You can avoid some of the crowds by coming earlier in the day, but then you have to deal with the heat. Personally I think it’s best to brave the crowds so you can enjoy the sunset.
All in all, it’s one of Bali’s classic sights and you can’t miss it!
The Uluwatu Monkeys
There are hundreds of wild monkeys roaming the temple grounds at Uluwatu, and they’re notoriously sneaky thieves.
There have actually been research studies on the infamous Uluwatu Bali monkeys and their unique tradition of stealing swag from tourists and then using it to barter for bananas. Trust me, these monkeys make the ones at Ubud Monkey Forest look mild mannered.
They especially like to grab phones and sunglasses, which they can do easily because the safety fence by the cliff is roughly shoulder height with all the tourists walking by holding their phones out.
If you plan to take pics at Uluwatu with a smartphone, be very careful and keep your head on a swivel! The monkeys can sneak up very quietly and steal it in a blink.
If you wear a cap, make sure it’s not a loose fit or they’ll try to grab that too. Cameras are generally okay, because they’re too heavy for their little monkey arms.
The temple staff can help if you lose something to the monkeys. They’ll try to barter them with bananas, and usually they’re successful, but no guarantees.
One time I saw a monkey steal a tourist’s phone, and before the temple staff could catch up to him he had already dropped the woman’s phone off the cliff!
- 7 AM – 7 PM
- Foreigners: 50k IDR (~$3 USD)
- Domestic: 30k IDR
- Fire Dance: 150k IDR
These Uluwatu ticket prices are current as of 2021, but they increase a little bit every year since it’s such a busy tourist attraction.
What To Wear To Temples In Bali
You’ll need to wear a sarong to enter most temples in Bali, including this one.
A sarong is a traditional skirt you tie around your waist, that can usually be rented on the spot for a small fee like 5,000 Rupiah (less than a dollar).
In this case, the sarong is included for free in the ticket price for the temple.
How To Get There
Uluwatu Temple is located on the far southwest corner of Bali island.
It’s a 1 hour drive from Kuta, Canggu, Sanur, and other popular tourist areas in south Bali, although it can take longer if there’s heavy traffic (especially after sunset when everyone is leaving).
I wouldn’t recommend coming here with a one-way taxi, because the location is remote and you’ll end up having to pay an extortionate fare to go back to town (especially after sunset, when all the taxi drivers evaporate).
Bali Private Driver & Motorbike Rental
If you want to explore Bali in the comfort and safety of a private car with a driver, my top recommendation would be Klook.
Their price is 450k IDR ($30 USD) for a full day of driving and sightseeing in Bali (up to 10 hours) for 1-5 passengers. That's the total price for the whole car + driver + petrol! It's a steal.
If you'd rather travel by motorbike, they have that too. Their scooter rentals start at 85k IDR (~$6) and include a helmet, rain coat, and pickup in the south Bali area.
We've used Klook for lots of tours and activities around the world, and they're great! Highly recommended.
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