Borobudur Temple in Indonesia: A Complete Guide

The Borobudur Temple in Indonesia is one of the greatest Buddhist monuments in the world and an extremely popular place for visitors from all over. The Temple is located in the southern part of Central Java on the island of Java in Indonesia.

Built in the 8th and 9th centuries, the Borobudur Temple is constructed in the mandala style. This represent a direct connection with nirvana by combining nine stacked platforms. Six of them square and the other are three circular. Located at the top is the main dome which is surrounded by 72 bell shaped stupas. Inside each stupa you will find a Buddha statue so be sure to look closely inside!

One of the Buddha statues that you can see inside the stupas at the Borodubur Temple in Central Java

Borobudur Temple in Indonesia had disappeared for centuries as it was buried under volcanic ash. In 1812 a man named Sir Thomas Stamford Raffles re-discovered the Temple and began clearing the site for restoration.

Repairing the Buddhist temple took many years and was complete in 1911. However, there was still much to be fixed so in 1973 the site was restored again with help from the Indonesia government and UNESCO. A decade later the pilgrimage site was finally complete. It wasn’t until 1991 that Borobudur Temple was declared an official UNESCO site.

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INCLUDED IN THIS BLOG POST:

  • Quick facts about the Borobudur Temple
  • What to expect at the temple
  • When is the best time to go to the Borobudur Temple
  • How to get to the temple
  • Exiting the Borobudur Temple in Indonesia

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The stupas at the top level of the Borobudur Temple in Central Java, Indonesia

Quick Facts About the Borobudur Temple:

  • Location: Central Java, Indonesia
  • Opening Hours: Officially 6 AM to5 PM daily
  • Entrance Fee: 350,000 IDR ($25 USD)
  • How to Dress: Conservatively by covering your shoulders and legs

 

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What to Expect at the Borobudur Temple in Indonesia


Entrance Fees 

The Foreigner fee to enter the temple is 350K IDR ($24.95 USD) per person or 630K IDR ($45 USD) if combined with a ticket to the Prambanan Temple. If you purchase the combo ticket you can buy it at either temple but you must visit them both within 48 hours. The ticket counters take cash or credit card. 

At the foreign ticket desk there will be a lounge area and you will be offered either water, tea or coffee. You will also need to pass through a metal detector before entering. 

The stupas are located on the top level of the Borobudur Temple

Dress Code 

Both men and women will need to cover their thighs and shoulders. If you don’t you will be given a sarong to wear free of charge. Please be respectful and wear it the entire time. There are also security guards walking around the stupas at the top of the temple and I’m sure they would tell you to cover up if you take the sarong off. If you don’t want to wear a sarong be sure to show up in pants or a long dress or skirt. 

One of the main Buddhas that can be seen at the Borobudur Temple in Indonesia

Crowds

The Borobudur Temple is THE most visited attraction in Indonesia. Therefore, it WILL be crowded. However, we arrived at 6AM and had a good 30 to 45 minutes to wander around before it became super crowded. 

Around 7AM a ton of local school children started showing up on what seemed to be a field trip. They will absolutely ask for selfies and it is okay to tell them no. We said yes to a few and then more and more people kept approaching us. It became a bit too much and very time consuming so we ended up just having to say sorry but no. 

A stupa with a small Buddha statue inside at the Borodubur Temple in Indonesia

Many of the children will also want to interview you about whether or not you liked the temple. If you have the time, go for it. But if you are not wanting to spend your entire day there taking pictures or answering questions then please do not feel bad about saying no. 

We thought we just arrived on an unlucky day but we’ve talked to many other people who experienced the same thing as us. So be prepared to be there with a few hundred other people no matter when you go.

Girl in yellow dress walking around the stupas at the Borobudur Temple in Indonesia

Photography Tips

Patience is key! There will be many people wandering around the stupas but if you wait just a few minutes the area will clear and you’ll be able to get your shots. 

Tripods are allowed anywhere within the temple, just be careful that it doesn’t get knocked over.

Drones are prohibited at this temple and many of the other sights in Yogyakarta. Be sure to respect the local drone laws here and wherever you are in the world.

Inside the Borobudur Temple in Central Java, Indonesia

» Must Read: The Top Things to Do in Yogyakarta, Indonesia


When is the Best Time to Go


The best time to go is for sunrise or sunset. These times of course come with an additional fee.

One that isn’t cheap!

Our advice is to go when they officially open at 6 AM or a few hours before sunset and stick around. If you arrive at 6 AM you will still be able to get some of that beautiful morning light without the additional price tag. 

Some of the large stupas that are on the top level of the Borobudur Temple in IndonesiaIf you go in the middle of the day be sure to wear plenty of sunscreen and bring water. It gets really hot and there isn’t any shaded areas within the actual temple. 

Official Hours of Opening: 6 AM to 5 PM

» Read all the blog posts from Indonesia and get some inspiration for your next trip!


How to Get to Borobudur Temple


Located about 1 hour outside of Yogyakara city, the Borobudur Temple can be easily reached by motorbike, GRAB taxi or private transfer. If you take a motorbike you can find the parking at these GPS Coordinates: and the cost to park is 5K IDR ($ 0.35 USD) You can rent a motorbike in Yogyakarta for around 70 K IDR ($5 USD) a day.

Once you’ve parked walk across the street and through the car and bus parking lot. You’ll eventually see the entrance you foreign visitors will purchase their tickets at the ticket office to the left. 

Part of the Borobudur Temple Complex in Central Java, Indonesia


Exiting the Borobudur Temple


When you leave the temple you will have to walk through a local market for about 10 minutes. The entire area is like a maze but you will continue to see signs pointing to the exit. Just keep walking and politely let them know you are not interested. The Indonesia people are very friendly and shouldn’t harass you to purchase their items after you’ve already said no thank you.  

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A Buddha inside one of the stupas at the Borobudur Temple in Indonesia

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