The handsome Ulun Danu Bratan temple is located on a peninsula on the banks of the sacred crater lake Bratan. This lake plays a vital role in the irrigation of the area and the southern regions of the island. The temple complex is therefore dedicated to Dewi Danu, the goddess of water.
The temple complex consists of several buildings on different islands and was built in 1633. It is actually used partly for Hindu and partly for Buddhist worship, with the altar as the centre of all ceremonies. Look closely and you’ll see that the way the holy buildings are constructed makes Ulun Danu Bratan seem like it is floating on the water. The main temple – Pura Teratai Bang – has a striking tower with seven layers, while another small island features a temple with eleven roofs. This construction method has made Ulun Danu Bratan a much loved object and, after Tanah Lot, the most photographed temple on the island.
Since the temple is situated at an altitude of 1200 metres and surrounded by mountains, the temperature here is very pleasant. Although it is often misty at this altitude, this gives an extra mysterious atmosphere to Ulun Danu. The temple is located less than an hour's drive from Ubud. To get to Lake Bratan and reach the temple you need to take a bus up the slopes of the volcano - hardly a chore, given how captivating the road is. The route is dotted with rice fields, deep lakes and picturesque villages. The very fertile area around the mountain lake is a rich green colour.
There is more to this region than the temple complex alone. The area around Ulun Danu definitely invites exploration, on foot with a guide, by taxi or on a scooter. Spending the night here is also worth considering with a range of budget accommodations and luxury resorts.