Tirta Empul Temple at Tampak Siring is one of the prominent temples in Ubud. It is considered as holy mountain spring and serves as a legendary setting for a traditional tale of good versus evil and is a national cultural heritage site. The temple complex was built circa 960 AD. It serves as a silent witness of the old Balinese kingdom years. Tirta Empul means “holy water spring” is actually the name of the water source that is passing within the temple. The water feeds adjoining purification pools, baths and fish ponds surrounding the outer complex which then all flow to the Tukad Pakerisan River. Another prominent and nearby site on top of a hill beside the temple complex is the presidential palace, Istana Tampaksiring, built during the years of the Indonesia’s first president, Sukarno.
The central shrines are under a traditional nipa hut roof. There is a pool with fountains spouting water into it. The water of the pool is drained into another pool which has huge number of multi-colored big koi circling around. Aside from the temple, Balinese often go here because of the sacred pool, which is also the reason for the temple being where it is.
The legend that is associated with the temple narrates how the pool of water was created by Lord Indra. There is a war between the evil king Mayadewana and the deity, Lord Indra, who is summoned by a priest to come down and help the people get rid of the tyranny. During the night Mayadewana enters the camp of his would-be destroyers treading on the sides of his feet so as to leave no footprints and creates a pool of poisoned water. (Tampak Siring means without imprints.) Next morning, the soldiers of Lord Indra drink the water and got ill. Lord Indra strikes the ground with his followers and creates a spring of fresh water which cures the illness of the soldiers.
The spring is still flowing and its water runs into the Tirtha Empul. It is still believed to have healing powers. Pilgrims come from far and near to bathe in the pool to cleanse their body spiritually, mentally and physically.
Pack your bathing suit and experience the springs as the Balinese do. Ducking your head under each of the 13 holy springs, feel the significance of the waters as they cleanse your past and you emerge ready to create the future. Adventurous Bali will provides all necessary offerings if you wish to experience this Balinese purification ritual.
Join Ubud Eat Pray Love Tour Package to visit and experience this wonderful holy spring bath ritual.