The temple faced west ward where Mount Batur and remains of its tamped black lavas serve as backdrop and Lake Batur stretches far down the slope, enhanced the beauty of nature around the temple. Batur Temple or as usual called Ulun Danu Temple is situated at 900 meters above level of Kalanganyar Batur village Kintamani District on the eastern side of the main road leading to Denpasar or Singaraja via Bangli.
Pura Penataran Agung Batur, the staple temple, has five main courtyards. The most dominant shrines are the meru’s, an 11-tiered one situated in the inner and most sacred courtyard, which is dedicated to the lake goddess, and three 9-tiered ones for the gods of mount Batur, mount Abang, and Ida Batara Dalem Waturenggong, the extol king of the Gelgel dynasty who ruled from 1460 to 1550. Another 3-tiered meru is for Ida Ratu Ayu Kentel Gumi who protects the plant from ailment.
erst, before it is in its present location Batur Temple is located on the north eastern slope of Mount Batur since the crushing eruption in 1917 which destroyed everything, including the temple it self. Then initiated by the head of the village along with other protruding figures, they brought the surviving shrines with them and rebuilt Batur Temple to the higher place at Kalanganyar or its present location.
In the northwest angle one can find a shrine with colorful statues that is built in Chinese style and dedicated to Ida Ratu Ayu Subandar, the patron saint of commerce and the ‘administrator’ of the gods. The worshipping of this god dates from the Hindu-Javanese days in which the king used to designate a harbor master, usually a Chinese, who was responsible for the storage and the patronage of precious objects. One of these objects, a golden belt, can be rhapsodic at the bale gedung, the building where these precious objects were stored.
Throughout its annals BaturTemple has been a asylum dedicated to the fecundity Goddess, Dewi Danu. She is the Goddess of lakes and waters. Mineral rich waters flow from Lake Batur, led from one rice terrace to another, in go down steps to the sea. In the Usana Bali Lontar, one of the sacred texts housed at the temple, there is an archaic legend that portray the formation of Dewi Danu’s throne. The legend goes as follows.
It is said that on the night of the new moon during Margasari the fifth month, the God Pasupati (Siwa) removed the peak of the sacred Hindu Mt. Mahameru in India and divided it into two parts. Carrying one part in his left hand and the other in his right the two pieces were brought to Bali to be used as thrones. The piece carried in the right hand became Mt. Agung – the throne for his son, the God Putranjaya (Mahadewa Siwa) and the remaining portion carried in the left hand became Mt. Batur – the throne for Dewi Danu, the Goddess of the lakes and waters. This legend refers to Bali’s two most respected volcanoes Gunung Agung and Gunung Batur as two symbolic elements ; male and female ( Purusa and Pradana), or two complimentary manifestation originating from one source; God ( Ida Sang Hyang Widhi ).
Before Mt. Batur’s devastating eruption in 1917, Batur Temple was originally located at the base of the volcano near the north western shore Of Lake Batur. Lava covered the village of Batur, destroying 65.000 houses, 2.500 temples and more then a thousand lives but miraculously stopped at the foot at the temple. The people took this as the good foreshadow and continued to live there. In 1926, a new eruption buried the whole temple except the highest shrine, dedicated to God in his manifestation as Dewi Danu, the Goddess of the lakes and waters. The villagers were then obliged to resettle on high ridges and begin their task rebuilt BaturTemple, commonly known as Pura Ulun Danu of Batur village.
some ancient Balinese holy manuscripts (lontar) have served as sources of information depict the history of Batur Temple. Its significance as part of the “Sad Kahyangan,” a group of the six most portray temples on Bali, is documented in the Widhi Sastra Lontar, the Raja Purana Lontar and the Babad Pasek Kayu Selem. Batur Temple is also referred to as “Kahyangan Jagat” temple which means it is a public place of worship.