Top 5 temples in Central Java

Mendut Temple

Mendut Temple in Central Java ©Pandu Adnyana (thanks for 100K views)/Flick

The history left its traces everywhere in Central Java, this culturally and traditionally rich region, that experienced and still experiences Islamic influences after the Hindu and Buddhist past. The Javanese Hindu culture floureished between the 8th and the 10th century during the Sailendra dynasty and the rule of the ancient matarami kings. The famous religious shrines were built in this time period.

Borobudur is one of the top 5 temples in Central Java and the finest example of the Mahayana Buddhism architecture in the world, along with Prambanan, the majestic Hindu temple and the oldest Hindu temples of  Java on the Dieng Plateau.

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The Borobudur temple

The name of the Borobudur temple is believed to come from the “Vihara Buddha Uhr” Sanscrit expression, that means “Buddhist monastery on the hill” and it was built in the 8th century by the Sailendra dynasty. This famous temple of Central Java lies near Magelang, at 90 km to the south-east from Semarang and at 42 km to the north-west of Yogyakarta. As one of the world’s most famous temple is majestically staying at the top of a hill surrounded by rich green fields and with a view of the distant mountains. It is made of gray andesite and on the top it has a great stupa with a height of 40 meters. The total length of the bas-reliefs on the walls has a length of 6 kilometers, therefor is considered the world’s largest and most complete Buddhist relief work, which is artistically unsurpassed: every scene is a masterpiece in itself.

Borobudur Temple

Borobudur Temple ©Seth Mazow/Flick

The temples of Bandungan and Gedong Songo

The temples of Bandungan and Gedong Songo are located on the Ungaro mountain slopes, at a height of about 900 meters above the sea. The Gedong Songo has nine buildings and it is a small group of sanctuaries from the 8th century. The temples can be reached by car or on horseback from Ungaran. They were built around the same time when the temples on the Dieng Plateau. Gedong Songo is one of the most beautiful temples of Central Java, but the trip is worth to be taken only for the breathtaking view of the surrounding countryside.

The Sukuh temple

The Sukuh temple is located at just 34 km from Solo. The structure reminds us of the Inca pyramids and it is decorated with wayang stone carvings of Hindu origin and erotic symbols.

Sukuh Temple

Sukuh Temple ©dany13/Flick

The Ceto Temple

The Ceto Temple lies on the western slope of Mount Lawu near the village of Gumeng in the Jenawi district. It is located at an altitude of 1400 meters above the sea level and has 13 stages similarly to the Hindu temples. The relief works of the Ceto temple are depicting the human passion and the difficult process of spiritual purification.

The Mendut temple

The Mendut temple is one of the top 5 temples in Central Java. It is located at only three km from Borobudur and it is believed that faces Benares in India, where Gautama formulated the teachings of Buddha for the first time. The small Mendut temple with the large Buddha statue and the nearby Pawon temple are an integral part of the Borobudur group of temple.

Mendut Temple

Mendut Temple ©Pandu Adnyana (thanks for 100K views)/Flick


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