Gunung Kawi Sebatu Temple
En-route, we visited Gunung Kawi and Tirtha Empul. Gunung Kawi is a temple complex, where 10-rock cut shrines have been carved into around 23ft of cliff face. There are five temples on the east side, which belong to King Udayana, his wife and three sons. On the west side, there are similar temples that belong to the king’s minor queens.
The majority of Jakarta's population is Muslim (around 87%), so this journey had to begin with a visit to a glamorous mosque. This is the largest mosque in not only Jakarta, but the entire South East Asia. With a capacity of over 120,000, the building stands next to Indonesia's biggest church. The mosque was built in 1978 to commemorate Indonesia's Independence." Intiqlal" being the Arabic word for Independence. It is the national mosque of the country and a magnanimous structure that captures your attention and invites you in. A great spectacle of Indonesian culture and architecture!
Lake Beratan Temple Tour
When we arrived at Lake Beratan at the top of the mountain we were quite hungry. We parked on the edge of the lake and umm and ahh'd over which Muslim bakso stall to eat at. We spent the equivalent of 50p on our lunches of bakso soup and nasi goreng, and once full we ventured to the botanical gardens and Pura Ulun Danu Beratan. The temple rests on a platform that protrudes in to the vast lake, clouds fringed the surrounding hills and we were shrouded in a protective grey fluff that began to quickly descend towards us like a mother intent on swaddling her toddlers from a bath. We were overcome with a highly meditative feeling of peace and safety, however the threat of rain in those grey comforting pillows and the coming night, take us away to find our bed, and some beers beforehand. The journey back saw us enjoy the great curving bends of the mountain road in the precipitous mountain air, while we saw the same bikes over take us and drop back over and over. Tired, smelling like road, the setting sun got into our eyes. We high-five'd children leaning out of a slow moving truck which which passed in the opposite direction.