Located at the southest of Tabanan area,
a side-road branches to the sea, ending
on a green hill which slopes down to the
beach and to the remarkable temple of
Tanah Lot, suspended on a huge rock offshore.
Set apart from the land by a stone basin,
the rock has been carved by incoming tides.
Lot, with its solitary black towers and
tufts of foliage spilling over the cliffs,
recalls the delicacy of a Chinese painting.
If hearsay is to be believed, there dwells
inside one of the shirnes inside one of
the shrines at Tanah Lot a huge snake,
discreetly left undisturbed by the Balinese.
a small sanctuary, Tanah Lot is linked
to a series of sea temples on the south
coast of Bali: Pura Sakenan, Pura Ulu
Watu, Pura Rambut Siwi and Pura Petitenget.
All these temples are related to the principal
mountain sanctuaries: Besakih at Gunung
Agung, Pura Batur at Batur and Pura Luhur
at Mt. Batukaru. The upland temples venerate
deities associated with mountains and
mountain lakes, while the sea temples
include homage to the guradian spirits
of the sea within their ritual. These
main temples are often listed with the
sad-kahyangan the six holy "national"
temples, which exact tribute from all
chronicles attribute the temple at Tanah
Lot of the 16-century priest Nirartha.
During his travles along the south coast
he saw the rock-island's beautiful setting
and rested there. Some fishermen saw him
and bringing gifts invited him to stay
at their hut. Nirartha refused, saying
he preferred to spend the night on the
little island. That evening he spoke to
the fishing folk and advised them to build
a shirne on the rock, for he felt it to
be a holy and fitting place to worship
God. The villagers kept their promise.
beaches of Tanah Lot are ideal for relaxing,
especially in the late afternoons when
the temple on the rock dissolves into
a striking silhouette against the evening