Are you a traveller who is also spiritual at heart? If so, you will probably want to visit a few of the world’s sacred temples, if not all of them. Luckily there are thousands to
Are you a traveller who is also spiritual at heart? If so, you will probably want to visit a few of the world’s sacred temples, if not all of them. Luckily there are thousands to choose from, from the ornate palaces of Thailand to the towering constructions of ancient Greece.
Here are the world’s 7 most beautiful temples to visit on your next international adventure…
#1: Angkor Wat, Cambodia
Angkor Wat is one of the world’s most famous temples, and also happens to be the largest Hindu temple complex on the planet too. It was built in Cambodia during the 12th century and is dedicated to the god Vishnu. The temple is based on Khmer architecture, and is surrounded by both a wall and a moat. Angkor Wat’s five impressive towers were inspired by the peaks of mythical Mount Meru.
#2: Temple of Hathor, Egypt
The Temple of Hathor is the main temple of Egypt’s Dendera Temple. The complex spans over 40,000 square miles, and is made from walls of mud bricks. The temple is best known for its carved sacrificial images on the walls, its ceilings which display the signs of the zodiac, and various columns displaying the goddess Hathor – the Egyptian goddess of love and joy.
#3: Tiger’s Nest Monastery, Bhutan
Better known as Taktasng Palphung Monastery, the Tiger’s Nest Monastery in Bhutan sits on steep cliff faces that rise over 3,000 feet from the foot of the Paro Valley. The temple is surrounded by nature, and sometimes by misty clouds as well. The only way to visit this sacred monastery is to hike to it or hire horses to do the hard work for you! Either way, finally getting to the hidden temple will be just as rewarding as it is when you play bingo games online.
#4: Akshardham, India
Akshardham, also named Delhi Akshardham, is a Hindu temple based in Delhi. The entire temple is covered with statues and carvings of flowers, animals, gods, goddesses, bards, dancers and more, which are carved into its Italian marble and Rajasthani pink sandstone walls. Akshardham is a collection of dozens of architectural movements from across India, and offers a wealth of statues, pillars and domes to see.
#5: Shwedagon Pagoda
Known to foreigners as the Great Dagon Pagoda, Shwedagon Pagoda is a Buddhist temple located in the city of Yangon in Myanmar. The golden pagoda has been standing for over 2,500 years, making it the longest-standing pagoda in the world. To maintain its shiny appearance, the people and rulers of Burma donate gold to its upkeep. This tradition was first started by a Burmese queen during the 15th century, who donated her own weight in gold to the cause.
#6: Golden Temple, India
India appears on this list once again with the Harmandir Sahib Golden Temple. The temple is surrounded by a lake of holy water, and is considered sacred by the Sikhs. It has 4 entryways to symbolise acceptance and understanding, and is built one level below ground to symbolise humility. The golden exterior of the temple often attracts visitors, but its ideals are just as attractive to those who seek enlightenment.
#7: Kiyomizu-dera, Japan
Kiyomizu-dera, or ‘pure water temple’, was named so thanks to the Otowa waterfall that runs through it. Kiyomizu-dera is world-famous for its wooden stage that is nestled around 42 feet higher than the hills below. It was also built without any nails! The Buddhist temple houses a number of shrines and the waterfall, which brings good fortune to anyone who drinks from it. Kiyomizu-dera is based in eastern Kyoto.