Ultimate Guide to Visiting Tanah Lot

The temple on a rocky cliff with waves breaking against it, a clear view of the temple's multi-tiered thatched roofs, and trees, under a cloudy, twilight sky.

Ultimate Guide to Visiting Tanah Lot  – Welcome to Tanah Lot, one of Bali’s most iconic and photographed temples. Perched on a rugged rock formation amidst crashing waves, this ancient Hindu shrine is not just a stunning visual spectacle but also a deeply spiritual place that captivates visitors from around the world.


In this guide, we’ll explore everything you need to know to visit Tanah Lot, from the best times to capture its beauty to understanding its cultural significance. Whether you’re a first-time visitor or returning to relive its wonders, Tanah Lot offers a profound connection to the mystical and natural beauty of Bali.

Navigating Your Journey


Located on the west coast of Bali, about 20 kilometers from Denpasar, Tanah Lot is easily accessible by various modes of transportation. Whether you’re coming from the bustling streets of Seminyak or the serene landscapes of Ubud, here’s how you can reach this stunning temple:

Best Times for Visitation

Tanah Lot is magnificent at sunset, with the sky casting golden hues over the temple silhouette. However, this is also when it’s most crowded. For a more tranquil experience, consider a morning visit. The temple is open from 7 AM, and you’ll share your moments with fewer tourists.

Dress Appropriately

As a place of worship, it’s important to dress respectfully. Shoulders should be covered, and it’s recommended to wear long pants or a skirt that goes past the knees. Sarongs and sashes can often be rented at the entrance, but bringing your own ensures you’re prepared and shows cultural appreciation.

Entrance Fees and Donations

There is a small fee to enter the temple area, which contributes to the maintenance and preservation of this historical site. As of my last visit, the fee was around 75,000 IDR for adults and 40,000 IDR for children, but it’s wise to check the latest prices as they can change. Donations beyond the entrance fee are not mandatory but are a nice gesture of support for the temple’s upkeep.

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From Kuta, Seminyak, and Nearby Areas

  • By Car or Scooter: The most convenient way to get to Tanah Lot from places like Kuta or Seminyak is by car or scooter. The journey typically takes about 45 minutes to an hour, depending on traffic. You can rent a scooter for around IDR 50,000 to 70,000 per day, or hire a car with a driver for approximately IDR 500,000 to 600,000 for a full day, which allows flexibility to visit multiple sites.
  • By Taxi or Ride-Sharing Apps: Taxis and ride-sharing services such as Grab and Gojek are readily available in these areas and offer a hassle-free way to reach Tanah Lot. Ensure the driver turns on the meter or agree on a fare before starting your journey to avoid overcharges.

From Ubud

  • By Car or Scooter: The trip from Ubud takes slightly longer, usually around 60 to 90 minutes. Renting a scooter or car provides the freedom to explore at your own pace and the opportunity to enjoy the scenic rice paddies and traditional villages along the way.
  • Tour Groups: Several tour operators in Ubud offer half-day or full-day tours that include Tanah Lot along with other nearby attractions. This can be a great option if you prefer a guided experience and included transportation.

Tips for the Journey

  • Traffic Considerations: Bali’s roads can get congested, especially during peak tourist seasons and around major holidays. Plan your departure times to avoid the heaviest traffic and make the most of your visit.
  • Parking: Tanah Lot has a dedicated parking area close to the temple entrance. Parking fees are nominal, and it’s well-organized, but it can fill up quickly during sunset and high tourist seasons.

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Entrance Fees and Donations

There is a small fee to enter the temple area, which contributes to the maintenance and preservation of this historical site. As of my last visit, the fee was around 75,000 IDR for adults and 40,000 IDR for children, but it’s wise to check the latest prices as they can change. Donations beyond the entrance fee are not mandatory but are a nice gesture of support for the temple’s upkeep.

Navigating Cultural Observances

Tanah Lot is still an active spiritual site where ceremonies and religious observances take place. During certain Balinese holy days, such as Kuningan or Galungan, the temple may be busier with local worshippers. Observing these rituals is a privilege, so be prepared to step aside and allow devotees to practice their rituals undisturbed.

The Tanah Lot Market

The approach to the temple is lined with vendors selling everything from souvenirs to snacks. While these can be tempting, remember that bargaining is commonplace. It’s also an excellent place to pick up a bottle of water before heading to the temple, as Bali’s heat can be intense, especially around noon.

Things to Be Aware Of When Visiting Tanah Lot Temple


Safety First

The temple is surrounded by ocean waters, and while it’s beautiful, it can also be dangerous. Always be aware of the tides when walking near the water, as they can rise quickly. Do not attempt to cross to the temple during high tide, as the currents can be strong. Also, be cautious on the wet rocks, as they can be very slippery.

Ceremonial Activities

The temple is a living cultural monument, with frequent ceremonies and religious activities that are integral to the Balinese Hindu community. During these times, certain areas may be restricted to visitors. If you’re fortunate enough to witness a ceremony, it’s a unique cultural experience, but always observe from a respectful distance and follow any instructions given by temple staff or signs.

Environmental Care

As with any natural site, it’s essential to minimize your environmental impact. Dispose of any trash properly, stick to designated paths, and refrain from touching or taking any part of the natural landscape or temple as a souvenir.

Parking and Facilities

Parking can be a bit of a challenge, especially during peak tourist seasons or around sunset. Arrive early to secure a spot, and be prepared for a short walk from the parking area to the temple entrance. The site is well-equipped with visitor facilities, including restrooms and small cafes, so you can refresh and recharge during your visit.

Start Your Journey in Tanah Lot 


As our journey through the sacred grounds of Tanah Lot comes to a close, we take with us not just photographs, but also the peace and reverence that this magnificent temple inspires. Tanah Lot stands as a testament to the spiritual harmony between nature and humanity, a place where the ocean’s whispers carry prayers, and the sunset is not just an astral dance, but a daily devotional.

Your visit to this temple is more than a mere tick off your travel bucket list; it’s an immersive experience into the heart of Balinese tradition. As the waves retreat from the rocky base at low tide, allowing pilgrims and travelers alike to wander through this historical and cultural monument, remember the importance of respect for the local customs and the natural environment that cradles this temple.

Take a moment to stand still, let the breeze carry your thoughts, and observe the ebb and flow of the tides, much like the passage of time that Tanah Lot has witnessed for centuries. As you depart, carry the serenity of Tanah Lot with you and let the memory of its storied stones remind you of the beauty that awaits when you tread with a gentle curiosity and an open heart.

Thank you for joining this guide through Tanah Lot. May your travels be as enriching as the stories that this sea temple holds. Until your next adventure, let the spirit of Bali’s shores guide you to your next discovery.


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