Pura means temple, and the Pura Taman Ayun means the Temple of the Vast Garden, and is well worth a visit if you’re in nearby Ubud or Denpasar. Figures from Balinese mythology stand guard on the temple towers.
The Taman Ayun was constructed in 1740, and restructured in 1937. It is ringed on three sides by a type of moat – the Hindu symbol of the cosmic sea.
The distinctive ‘meru’ (or towers) of various heights symbolize the mountains, thought to be the residence of the Gods.
You’ll find these meru on the back of the Indonesian rupiah. The highest meru on the temple complex is eleven levels.
The symbolism and careful design of the Pura Taman Ayun are believed to ensure the harmonious flow of water from the mountains and into Bali’s ubiquitous rice paddies, where it would then flow back to the sea, and begin its full cycle again arriving back to the mountains.
You can climb one of the towers on the outer wall for a view over the pretty complex.
My sons and I had a great time exploring this lovely temple, on our way to the far less cultural site of the zip lines of northern Bali – TreeTop Adventure.
Enjoy your time exploring this interesting island.