Indonesian Temple Series

Indonesia has a wealth of ancient temple sites and a visit I made to Yogyakarta in 2008 made me realise the similarities to the ancient temples I had seen in Cambodia. The two main temples are the famous Borobudur and Prambanan temples but there are also a number of smaller temple complexes in this area which are worth visiting. I have collected the images from these temples into this collection which can be purchased via my main website.

This is a unique collection of B&W images of temples in Indonesia and are printed in either MetalPrint high gloss or MetalPrint satin finish and in a variety of sizes. This set of high quality prints have been priced as a special package as a set of 4 and would make an exceptional framed series for the collector. These MetalPrints offers a stunning media to display these images and is particularly well suited for black and white images.


Borobudur, Yogyakarta, Indonesia
Borobudur, Yogyakarta, Indonesia

Borobudur is a Mahayana Buddhist monument near Magelang, Central Java, Indonesia built in the 8th and 9th century. The monument comprises six square platforms topped by three circular platforms, and is decorated with 2,672 relief panels and 504 Buddha statues. A main dome, located at the center of the top platform, is surrounded by 72 Buddha statues seated inside perforated stupa.

This colossal temple was built between AD 750 and 842: 300 years before Cambodia’s Angkor Wat, 400 years before work had begun on the great European cathedrals. Little is known about its early history except that a huge army of workers worked in the tropical heat to shift and carve the 60,000 m3 of stone. At the beginning of the 11th century AD, because of the political situation in Central Java, divine monuments in that area, including the Borobudur Temple became completely neglected and given over to decay. The Sanctuary was exposed to volcanic eruption and other ravages of nature. The temple was not rediscovered until the 19th century. A first restoration campaign, supervised by Theodor van Erp, was undertaken shortly after the turn of the century. A second one was led more recently (1973-82).

Borobudur is built as a single large stupa, and when viewed from above takes the form of a giant tantric Buddhist mandala, simultaneously representing the Buddhist cosmology and the nature of mind. The foundation is a square, approximately 118 meters (387 ft) on each side. It has nine platforms, of which the lower six are square and the upper three are circular. The upper platform features seventy-two small stupas surrounding one large central stupa. Each stupa is bell-shaped and pierced by numerous decorative openings. Statues of the Buddha sit inside the pierced enclosures.

The monument is both a shrine to the Lord Buddha and a place for Buddhist pilgrimage. The journey for pilgrims begins at the base of the monument and follows a path circumambulating the monument while ascending to the top through the three levels of Buddhist cosmology, namely Kāmadhātu (the world of desire), Rupadhatu (the world of forms) and Arupadhatu (the world of formlessness). During the journey the monument guides the pilgrims through a system of stairways and corridors with 1,460 narrative relief panels on the wall and the balustrades.

The large bell-shape structures are known as stupas and some of them contain a statue of Buddha. A stupa is a mound-like structure containing relics, typically the remains of Buddha, used by Buddhists as a place of worship.

Evidence suggests Borobudur was abandoned following the 14th-century decline of Buddhist and Hindu kingdoms in Java, and the Javanese conversion to Islam. Worldwide knowledge of its existence was sparked in 1814 by Sir Thomas Stamford Raffles, then the British ruler of Java, who was advised of its location by native Indonesians. Borobudur has since been preserved through several restorations. The largest restoration project was undertaken between 1975 and 1982 by the Indonesian government and UNESCO, following which the monument was listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Borobudur is still used for pilgrimage; once a year Buddhists in Indonesia celebrate Vesak at the monument, and Borobudur is Indonesia’s single most visited tourist attraction.

Besides being the highest symbol of Buddhism, the Borobodur stupa is also a replica of the universe. It symbolises the micro-cosmos, which is divided into three levels, in which man’s world of desire is influenced by negative impulses; the middle level, the world in which man has control of his negative impulses and uses his positive impulses; the highest level, in which the world of man is no longer bounded by physical and worldly ancient desire.

It is devotional practice to circumambulate around the galleries and terraces always turning to the left and keeping the edifice to the right while either chanting or meditating. In total, Borobodur represents the ten levels of a Bodhisattva’s life which he or she must develop to become a Buddha or an awakened one.


Prambanan, Yogyakarta, Indonesia
Prambanan, Yogyakarta, Indonesia

Candi Prambanan is a ninth century Hindu temple compound in Central Java, Indonesia, dedicated to the Trimurti, the expression of God as the Creator (Brahma), the Sustainer (Vishnu) and the Destroyer (Shiva). The temple compound is located approximately 18 km east of Yogyakarta city on the boundary between Yogyakarta and Central Java province.

The temple, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is the largest Hindu temple in Indonesia, and is one of the largest Hindu temples in south-east Asia. It is characterised by its tall and pointed architecture, typical of Hindu temple architecture, and by the towering 47m high central building inside a large complex of individual temples.

The effects of numerous earthquakes can be clearly seen at this World Heritage Site in Indonesia where the temples collapsed in the 16th century. There are still piles of rubble all over the site where various monuments have fallen.

The architecture of Prambanan temple follows the typical Hindu architecture traditions based on Vastu Shastra. The temple design incorporated mandala temple plan arrangements and also the typical high towering spires of Hindu temples. Prambanan was originally named Shivagrha and dedicated to god Shiva. The temple was designed to mimic Meru, the holy mountain the abode of Hindu gods, and the home of Shiva. The whole temple complex is a model of Hindu universe according to Hindu cosmology and the layers of Loka.

Just like Borobudur, Prambanan also recognize the hierarchy of the temple zones, spanned from the less holy to the holiest realms. Each Hindu and Buddhist concepts has their own terms, but the concept’s essentials is identical. Either the compound site plan (horizontally) or the temple structure (vertically) are consists of three zones

Other Temples

Candi Plaosan, Yogyakarta, Indonesia
Candi Plaosan, Yogyakarta, Indonesia
There are numerous other small Buddhist temples close to and in the surrounding area to Candi Prambanan so if visiting Candi Prambanan it is well worth taking some extra time to visit some of these sites.

Candi Lumbung

Candi Lumbung is located in the Prambana archaeological Park on the northwest side of modern Yogyakarta. It is a Buddhist temple dating from around 850AD and is situated between between Candi Prambanan and Candi Sewu. The main sanctuary is surrounded by to be surrounded by 16 smaller temples, most of which contain a raised altar with spaces marked for three images. In addition, there are niches in the back and side walls for additional deities.


Candi Sewu

Sewu is an 8th-century Mahayana Buddhist temple located 800 meters north of Prambanan in Central Java. It comprises a main sanctuary surrounded by many smaller temples. Candi Sewu is actually the second largest Buddhist Temple in Indonesia after Borobudur. Candi Sewu predates nearby “Loro Jonggrang” temple. Although originally only around 249 temples are present, the name in Javanese translates to ‘a thousand temples,’ which originated from popular local folklore; The Legend of Loro Jonggrang. The original name of this temple compound is probably Manjusrigrha.

Candi Plaosan

Candi Plaosan, also known as the ‘Plaosan Complex’, is one of the Buddhist temples located in Bugisan village, Prambanan district, Central Java, Indonesia, about a kilometer to the northwest of the renowned Hindu Prambanan Temple. Candi Plaosan covers an area of 2,000 square meters with an elevation of 148 meters above sea level. Candi Plaosan was thought to have been built by a Hindu king for his Buddhist queen.

How To Purchase

Got to my main website and click on the Special Offers tab and then scroll to the Indonesian Temple Series item in the list. Or use this direct link here :

To purchase click on the BUY PHOTOS button then choose BUY PHOTO PACKAGE to take advantage of this special package pricing for 4 high quality prints. Or individual images can be purchased by choosing BUY PHOTOS and then choosing THIS PHOTO or PHOTOS FROM THIS GALLERY

To take advantage of the special package pricing for 4 high quality prints you can choose any 4 images from the complete set of images so gives a flexible way to create your own series for display.


Passionate Photographer …. Lost in Asia

Stuart Taylor of HighlanderImages Photography has been making images for over 25 years and can offer a diverse range of photo imaging services with a focus on Asia and a documentary/photojournalistic style. These services include planning and executing a photo shoot on location but importantly all the post-processing and image preparation needed for the specific finished media format required by the customer. Stuart’s experience and knowledge in all of these aspects makes HighlanderImages Photography a one-stop-shop for a comprehensive and professional image production service.

Stuart can be available for a variety individual assignments or projects and he specialises in areas such as photojournalism, commercial, architectural, real estate, industrial, interior design, corporate, urbex, adventure, wilderness and travel photography. Stuart can also offer some innovative and advanced techniques such as HDR (High Dynamic Range) and Panoramic Photography.

Final image products can be delivered as high resolution images, prints, books, multimedia slideshows, videos and DVDs. Images from this website can be purchased as prints in a variety of sizes and media, as gift items or as digital downloads.

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