Goa Gajah

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Entrance to the 'Elephant Cave'
Bathing temple
Bathing temple figures
Entrance to the Elephant Cave 'Goa Gajah'

Goa Gajah, or Elephant Cave, is located on the island of Bali near Ubud, in Indonesia. Built in the 9th century, it served as a sanctuary.[1]

Site description

At the façade of the cave is a relief of various menacing creatures and demons carved into the rock at the cave entrance. The primary figure was once thought to be an elephant, hence the nickname Elephant Cave. The site is mentioned in the Javanese poem Desawarnana written in 1365. An extensive bathing place on the site was not excavated until the 1950s.[2] These appear to have been built to ward off evil spirits.

World Heritage Status

This site was added to the UNESCO World Heritage Tentative List on October 19, 1995, in the Cultural category.[3]


  1. ^ Davison, J. et al. (2003)
  2. ^ Pringle, R. (2004) p 61
  3. ^ Elephant Cave - UNESCO World Heritage Centre

External links

  • Central Bali travel guide from Wikivoyage


Coordinates: 8°31′24.20″S 115°17′10.89″E / 8.5233889°S 115.2863583°E / -8.5233889; 115.2863583

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