Ancient Temples

Many of the arts of Indonesia were generated from Central Java, the land of legends. Here great palaces and religious monuments from Hindu, Buddhist, and Islamic faiths were built. Legend has it that 2,000 temples once graced the plains of the Kedu Valley and its surrounding region. From Borobudur and Gedong Songo to Prambanan and the Dieng Plateau, many of the most ancient and important of Asia’s religious monuments and temples are on the plains and volcanic slopes of Central Java with easy access from Amanjiwo. 

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Borobudur Temple 

The 9th-century Unesco World Heritage Site of Borobudur is the world’s largest Buddhist temple and is amongst the most well-preserved, together with Angkor Wat. Borobudur can be reached with a pleasant 25-minute cycle, or five-minute drive from Amanjiwo. A dawn visit is highly recommended for witnessing the sunrise, giving guests ample time to learn the secret meanings of this masterpiece and bringing to life the knowledge contained within its reliefs.

Temples around Amanjiwo

The best time to visit the sacred temples that surround Amanjiwo is in the morning, as the sun slowly rises higher in the sky and the morning dew begins to disappear. From the resort, just a short drive takes guests to the Kedu Valley, where, accompanied by an Amanjiwo Guide, several Hindu and Buddhist temples can be explored, dating back to the 8th and 9th century.

Mendut Temple

The 8th century Mahayana Buddhist temple just moments from Amanjiwo, has been described as one of the greatest manifestations of Buddhist spiritualism and art. For many of those who visit, a silent sojourn into the temple’s interior creates a strong feeling of connection with a higher world. Inside rests a three-metre-tall sitting Buddha carved from a single stone, which is thought to be one of the most beautiful Buddha images in the world. This masterpiece is complimented on either side by the Bodhisattvas - Padmapani, the Redeemer of this world, and Maitreya, the Lord of the future world.

Pawon Temple

This tiny temple is typical of Central Java’s temples and was the first to be restored. Its relief of pot-bellied bearded characters dispensing torrents of riches suggests that it was dedicated to Kuvera, the Buddhist god of fortune. A quick visit to Pawon Temple is best combined with dinner at local resident, Pak Bilal's house, located just one-minute walk from the temple.

 

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Prambanan Temple

Prambanan is the largest Hindu Temple complex outside of India with three main temples dedicated to Brahma, Vishnu, and Shiva. Built in the 9th century, these magnificent towering structures with their ornate carvings, bear witness to the fact that the local Javanese were apt and able craftsmen. Prambanan is known particularly for its bas-relief of Ramayana carvings and the Prambanan lion motive which appears on all three temples.