Unveiling Prambanan Temple: Yogyakarta’s Magnificent Hindu Heritage

Prambanan Temple is a prominent Hindu sanctuary in central Java, just a stone’s throw away from Yogyakarta’s bustling streets. Dating back to the 9th century, this iconic temple complex is steeped in history and local legend, earning it the moniker “Candi Rara Jonggrang” after the tale of Princess Rara Jonggrang and Prince Bondowoso. While the integrity of this legend remains a subject of debate, the Prambanan Temple remains a testament to Indonesia’s rich cultural heritage.

The temple is dedicated to the Trimurti—Brahma, Vishnu, and Shiva. It captivates visitors from all over the world with its elaborate construction and exquisite decorations. Prambanan Temple, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, represents Indonesia’s long-lasting spiritual history. Explore this architectural marvel and become enthralled with Yogyakarta tourist attractions, where each stone tells a narrative of ancient civilizations and holy devotion.

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Denpasar City

Address Jl. Raya Solo – Yogyakarta No.16, Kranggan, Bokoharjo, Kec. Prambanan, Kabupaten Sleman, Daerah Istimewa Yogyakarta 55571
Phone (0274) 496401
Opening Hour 08:00-17:15
Managed by Yogyakarta Cultural Heritage Conservation Center
Highlights
  • Hindu Temple Complex
  • Siva Temple
  • Brahma Temple
  • Wisnu Temple
  • Wahana Temple, Apti, Kelir, and Patok Temple
  • Perwara Temple
  • Hindu Architecture and Relief
  • Prambanan Museum
  • Ramayana Ballet

ABOUT PRAMBANAN TEMPLE

General Information

Prambanan Temple, also known as Loro Jonggrang Temple, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site in Central Java, Indonesia. This majestic complex comprises over 200 temples, with the main attractions being the three towering temples dedicated to the Hindu trinity—Shiva, Brahma, and Vishnu. Each temple is adorned with elaborate carvings and intricate architecture, reflecting the site’s rich cultural and religious significance.

History of Prambanan Temple

Prambanan Temple, situated in Central Java, Indonesia, is a magnificent testament to ancient Javanese architecture and Hindu culture. Its construction dates back to the 9th century, during the reign of Rakai Pikatan, a king of the Mataram Kingdom. This grand complex was erected to venerate the Hindu deity, Shiva, reflecting the kingdom’s devout religious practices and artistic prowess. Prambanan consists of three main temples dedicated to the Hindu trinity of Shiva, Vishnu, and Brahma, each with soaring spires, complex carvings, and elaborate reliefs. Among them, the central shrine dedicated to Shiva stands as the tallest, reaching an impressive height of 47 meters (154 feet).

Prambanan Temple fell into disrepair and eventual abandonment as the Mataram Kingdom declined and power shifted to East Java. Factors such as volcanic eruptions and earthquakes in the region likely contributed to its demise. However, in the early nineteenth century, British colonial overlords found Prambanan, igniting restoration attempts to preserve its historical and cultural importance. These endeavours led to its recognition as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1991, acknowledging its outstanding universal value and significance to humanity.

Today, Prambanan Temple is a popular tourist destination, attracting visitors from across the globe who admire its architectural splendour and delve into its rich history. It symbolizes Indonesia’s rich cultural heritage and religious diversity, showing the ancient Javanese civilization’s artistic achievements and spiritual devotion.

Highlights

Explore the enchanting highlights of Prambanan Temple:

  • Hindu Temple Complex: Marvel at the sprawling complex of over 200 temples, each dedicated to Hindu deities and mythological figures.
  • Siva Temple: Admire the towering Siva Temple, the largest and most prominent structure in the complex, dedicated to the god Shiva.
  • Brahma Temple: Discover the intricately carved Brahma Temple, dedicated to the creator god Brahma, adorned with ornate reliefs and statues.
  • Wisnu Temple: Visit the majestic Wisnu Temple, dedicated to the preserver god Vishnu and features exquisite architectural details and sacred shrines.
  • Wahana Temple, Apti, Kelir, and Patok Temple: Explore the lesser-known temples within the complex, each offering unique architectural styles and historical significance.
  • Perwara Temple: Witness the Perwara Temples, which are dedicated to the guardian deities and serve as ancillary structures to the main temples.
  • Hindu Architecture and Relief: Appreciate the intricate Hindu architecture and finely detailed relief sculptures depicting scenes from Hindu mythology, showcasing the artistic mastery of ancient Javanese artisans.
  • Prambanan Museum: Immerse yourself in the rich history and cultural heritage of Prambanan Temple at the onsite museum. It is a house full of collections of artefacts, sculptures, and historical exhibits.
  • Ramayana Ballet: Experience the mesmerizing Ramayana Ballet. It is a traditional Javanese dance performance held against the backdrop of Prambanan Temple. The performance brings to life the epic tale of the Ramayana with captivating music, choreography, and costumes.

Prambanan Temple Entry Rules

  • Visitors are required to utilize the PeduliLindungi app.
  • For family travellers: the parent must accompany children under 12 years old when entering the temple area.
  • Since mid-2020, visitors have not been permitted to ascend to the temple. So you can only get to the temple grounds/yard (zone 1). This provision may apply in the future.
  • At 15.00, the Prambanan Temple grounds (zone 1) will be closed to guests. However, we can remain in Zone 2 until 18.00.
  • Visitors are also not permitted to enter the Prambanan Temple grounds every Monday. So, you can only get to the park (zone 2).
  • It is illegal to bring food and beverages from outside.

Other Tourist Attractions Nearby

In addition to Prambanan Temple, Yogyakarta boasts many captivating attractions that are waiting to be explored. From the majestic Borobudur Temple to the vibrant streets of Malioboro, visitors can immerse themselves in the rich cultural tapestry of this enchanting city. Explore the ancient ruins of Ratu Boko, stroll along the scenic beaches of Parangtritis, or indulge in traditional Javanese cuisine at local markets and eateries. With its diverse sights and experiences, Yogyakarta promises an unforgettable journey for travellers seeking to uncover the treasures of Indonesia’s past and present.

MAP of Prambanan Temple