Picture of the Day: Bali’s Tanah Lot Sea Temple
Tanah Lot is a rock formation off the Indonesian island of Bali. It is home of a pilgrimage temple, the Pura Tanah Lot (literally “Tanah Lot temple”), and a popular tourist and cultural icon. Located in Tabanan, about 20 kilometres (12 mi) from Denpasar, the temple sits on a large offshore rock which has been shaped continuously over the years by the ocean tide. Tanah Lot is claimed to be the work of the 15th-century priest Nirartha.
The temple is one of seven sea temples around the Balinese coast. Each of the sea temples were established within eyesight of the next to form a chain along the south-western coast. In 1980, the temple’s rock face was starting to crumble and the area around and inside the temple started to become dangerous. The Japanese government provided a loan to the Indonesian government (approximately USD $130 million) to conserve the historic temple and other significant locations around Bali. As a result, over one third of Tanah Lot’s ‘rock’ is actually cleverly disguised artificial rock.