Is Borobudur Temple Worth Visiting? | How to plan a perfect trip

Are you planning a trip to Indonesia? Is Borobudur Temple worth visiting? Should you include it in your itinerary? Let me answer that for you.

Borobudur Temple is located in Magelang, Central Java, Indonesia. The largest Buddhist temple in the world, it is one of Indonesia’s UNESCO World Heritage Sites.

Truthfully, seeing the Borobudur Temple was the main reason I decided to book the first of my many trips to Indonesia.

But with many beautiful places in Indonesia, is Borobudur Temple worth visiting?

Friends at Borobudur Temple in Indonesia. Is Borobudur Temple worth visiting? YES!
Angge and Monica at Borobudur Temple in Indonesia

When you plan a trip to Indonesia, you’d probably think of having a relaxing vacation in Bali.

And I can’t blame you. Even my friend Angge invited me on a trip to Indonesia to lounge by the beaches of Bali.

But growing up in the Philippines, where you can find many paradisiacal islands and beaches (like those in Palawan, Boracay, Bohol, and Cebu), booking an expensive flight just to beach bum in a foreign country did not interest me that much. While I’d also love the opportunity to swim in the beautiful beaches of other countries, I prefer exploring places that offer experiences I would otherwise not be able to experience when visiting the best places in my home country, the Philippines.

So, as someone interested in a destination’s history and culture, I quickly searched for UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Indonesia and found Borobudur Temple. And with the condition that we’d also visit Borobudur Temple, we started planning our trip to Indonesia.

In the end, we spent a relaxing beach day in Bali (as what Angge wanted!), explored Yogyakarta and Solo (Surakarta) and, of course, spent one morning at Borobudur Temple.

And after exploring it, I can definitely say that Borobudur Temple is worth visiting.

Happy visitors of Borobudur Temple in Indonesia
The Boho Travels at Borobudur Temple

But before our trip, I knew that my friend, Angge, had doubts about whether Borobudur Temple was worth visiting. So, you might want to know this, too!

So, let me try to answer that for you.

By the end of this blog post, you’ll have the answer to the question, “Is Borobudur Temple worth visiting?” In addition, you’ll learn how to visit Borobudur Temple and what else you can do during your Indonesia tripβ€”especially if, like us, you want to visit Solo (Surakarta) and Yogyakarta.

⏳ Short on time?

Here are my recommended travel planning resources for your trip to Borobudur Temple!

✈️ Flights: Book your flights with WayAway [BONUS: Get cashback for flights, accommodations, car rentals, tours with WayAway Plus]
πŸ’Έ Flying within Indonesia on a budget? Book your flights with Airasia.

πŸš™ Airport Transfer and Private Charter with Driver: Book with Klook
πŸš— Car Rental: Book with

πŸ›Œ Hotels & Accommodation: I recommend booking with or Agoda (very popular in Asia)
Budget: Janur Bungalow
Mid-range: Villa Borobudur Resort
Luxury: Plataran Borobudur Resort & Spa

🏞️ Tours & Activities: I recommend booking with Viator, GetYourGuide or Klook (very popular in Asia)

πŸ‘£ Recommended Experiences:
Borobudur Temple Guided Tour
Borobudur Sunrise, Mount Merapi Jeepney Tour, Prambanan Temples Complex Tour
Ramayana Ballet at Prambanan Temple
Yogyakarta Palace + Taman Sari Water Castle Tour

πŸ›œ e-Sim: Airalo
πŸ“ Visas & Other Travel Documents: iVisa
🩺 Travel Medical Insurance: SafetyWing

*These are all travel resources I personally use for planning and booking my trips. If you use them, some of them will earn me a commission at no extra cost to you. This helps reduce the ever-increasing costs of keeping my site up. Thanks!

Is Borobudur Temple Worth Visiting? πŸ€”

Borobudur Temple is the largest Buddhist temple in the world and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It has three main levels, each symbolizing a step to enlightenment. This Buddhist monument is decorated with intricate reliefs and has 504 sitting Buddhas. People visit Borobudur Temple for worship, meditation, and contemplation. It is also a place of pilgrimage for Buddhists, especially during Vesak Day.

Because of its historical, cultural, and religious significance, I’d say that Borobudur Temple is worth visiting.

I’ll be honest. I love visiting temples. I enjoyed exploring temples in Bangkok, Chiang Mai, and Ayutthaya in Thailand, the Balinese temples in Indonesia, the Angkor Wat in Cambodia, and the temples of Bagan, Mandalay, and Yangon in Myanmar.

And exploring Borobudur Temple was no different.

There’s just something about exploring these ancient temples that makes me feel like I am getting a glimpse into what it was like to live centuries ago. I am amazed by the intricate details of their artistic expressions and how they are preserved and used today.

But more than that, exploring ancient temples, like the Borobudur Temple, built in the 8th century and 9th century AD during Syailendra Dynasty, makes me feel like I’m acquiring wisdom from the enlightened ones from centuries ago.

For example, our guide stressed the belief in the existence of both good and bad and the necessity of balancing the two. This was expressed in the difference in the shapes of holes in the two groups of stupas on the top level: one set has diamond-shaped holes, while the other has square-shaped holes.

Another one that stuck with me was the confirmation of my belief that “Everything is nothing. Nothing is everything.” It was good to know that it’s not only me who gets it. I’m not THAT weird after all.

πŸ’‘ Pro Tip: You can definitely explore Borobudur Temple on your own. But to make the most out of the experience, I recommend that you join a Borobudur Temple guided tour to learn about the history of this UNESCO World Heritage Site. 

πŸ›Œ Where to stay when you visit Borobudur Temple

If you’re planning to visit it on your own (i.e., not as part of a guided tour), I invite you to book your accommodation around Borobudur Temple so you can beat the crowds.

πŸ‘‰πŸΌ Budget Option: Janur Bungalow is 10 minutes away from Candi Borobudur. Guests love staying here because of its unique and pretty interior and exterior, cleanliness, friendly owner, and staff. 

πŸ‘‰πŸΌ Mid-Range Option: Villa Borobudur Resort is a luxury hotel 12 minutes from Borobudur Temple. It offers a spectacular view of Mt. Merapi and Borobudur Temple from afar. Guests love staying here because of its amazing staff, top-notch service, breathtaking views, and on-site restaurant. It’s a bit far away from the town proper, but if you’re looking for a relaxing stay, then Villa Borobudur Resort may be the best accommodation option for you.

πŸ‘‰πŸΌ Luxury Option: Plataran Borobudur Resort & Spa is a traditional villa with all the modern comforts. Located atop Tanjungan Village’s hills in Central Java, it offers guests incredible views and a relaxing vacation. Guests love staying here because of its serene and spectacular views, top-notch service, and welcoming and hospitable staff. If you want a luxurious stay during your visit to Borobudur, consider staying at Plataran Borobudur Resort & Spa.

These are my recommended accommodations near Borobudur Temple. But you can also book your accommodation in Yogyakarta or Surakarta, if you plan to explore both destinations, too.

πŸ“ Ultimate guide + travel tips for how to plan a perfect trip to Borobudur Temple

Now that I’ve shared my thoughts about the question, “Is Borobudur Temple worth visiting?” I now want to share some tips for visiting Borobudur Temple to make your trip enjoyable and memorable!

How to visit Borobudur Temple: You can visit Borobudur Temple on your own, through a guided tour, or by hiring a private guide.

πŸ’‘ Pro Tip: I recommend booking a guided tour or hiring a private guide when you visit UNESCO World Heritage Sites, including Borobudur Temple. While you can of course enjoy it on your own, I feel like there are just so many things to learn about this ancient temple that it’s worth spending the extra money for it.

But if you want to save money and explore Borobudur Temple DIY style, here are the things you need to know to help you plan your trip:

Where is Borobudur Temple?

Borobudur Temple is in Magelang, Central Java, Indonesia. While many people think that it’s in Yogyakarta, it is not. It is actually about an hour’s drive from Yogyakarta City.

How to get to Borobudur Temple (Jakarta and Bali to Borobudur Temple)

πŸ’‘ Pro Tip: If you have limited time and prioritize convenience, I recommend booking a combination tour of Borobudur Temple, Mount Merapi Jeep Tour, and Prambanan Complex.

We did this when we visited Borobudur Temple, which was one of the best decisions we made on that trip. It saved us time, we learned about these places from an English-speaking guide, and it was also convenient to visit multiple destinations in a day without needing to figure out the commute!

Best time to visit Borobudur

The best time to visit Borobudur Temple is during sunrise and on a weekday (except on Mondays, when access to the temple monument is closed for preservation activities).

But, if you don’t like the crowds, you can also schedule your visit to Borobudur Temple a little after sunrise, when the sunrise visitors are already about done or have already left. I think, regardless of the time you visit Candi Borobudur (except on Mondays when access to the temple monument is closed), Borobudur Temple is worth visiting.

Entrance Fee for Borobudur Temple (Prices of Borobudur Tickets)

25 USD (>10 years old), 15 USD (3-10 years old), 15 USD (students with a valid student card)

Borobudur Temple Opening Hours

Ticket counters are open from 6:30 AM to 4:30 PM. The Temple Yard is open daily, but the temple itself is closed on Mondays (due to preservation activities).

πŸ’‘ Pro Tip: If you plan to visit Borobudur Temple on your own (i.e., not part of a guided tour), please visit the Borobudur Temple Official Website to check the operational schedule and ticket prices.

What to wear when you visit Borobudur Temple

Borobudur Temple is a place of worship for Buddhists, so please refrain from wearing shorts and mini skirts. You will also be asked to wear a sarong, but if you don’t have one, you can borrow one from the entrance gate, like we did!

Places you can visit near Borobudur Temple

Borobudur Temple is just one of the best places to visit when you are in the area of Yogyakarta, Central Java, and Solo (Surakarta). When we visited Borobudur Temple, we also stayed for a couple more days to explore other nearby tourist attractions.

If you want to make the most out of your trip to visit Borobudur Temple, here are some of the other places you can visit while you’re in the area:

βœ”οΈ Candi Mendut

A male and a female at Candi Mendut in Indonesia

Candi Mendut is another Buddhist Temple in Central Java, Indonesia. While it’s not as grandiose as the Borobudur Temple, I think it’s also worth visiting.

βœ”οΈ Mount Merapi

Travelers riding a 4x4 at Mount Merapi in Indonesia

Mount Merapi is an active volcano in Central Java. After visiting Borobudur Temple and Candi Mendut, we went on a Mount Merapi Jeep Tour. Riding a 4×4 and driving through volcanic ash from a recent Mount Merapi eruption was an adventure in itself. But what was most memorable for me was hearing the heartbreaking stories and seeing the ruins of the eruption with my two eyes. It reminded me of our mortality and that we should make the most out of what we have right now.

πŸ’‘ Pro Tip: Mount Merapi is one of the most active volcanoes in Indonesia, so if you decide to explore it, make sure to do it with extreme caution.

βœ”οΈ Prambanan Temples

The Boho Travels at Prambanan Temple - exploring the Prambanan Temple Compounds is one of the best things to do in Yogyakarta

Prambanan Temple Compounds is another UNESCO World Heritage Site. While Borobudur Temple is famous for its sunrise tour, Prambanan Temple is where you can catch gorgeous sunsets. After exploring Prambanan Temple Compounds, you can also watch Ramayana Ballet at Prambanan Temple.

βœ”οΈ Taman Sari Water Castle and Underground Mosque

Taman Sari Water Castle - exploring it is one of the best things to do in Yogyakarta

Exploring the Taman Sari Water Castle and Underground Mosque was probably one of my most favorite experiences when we went to Yogyakarta. Together with other historic landmarks in the Cosmological Axis of Yogyakarta, Taman Sari Royal Garden Complex was inscribed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2023.

βœ”οΈ Malioboro Street

If you are looking for souvenirs and enjoy bargain hunting, then include a stop at Malioboro Street in your itinerary. I loved the experience of haggling with the vendors so much that I ended up buying tons of souvenirs and gifts for my loved ones!

FAQs: Is Borobudur Worth Visiting?

Here are some frequently asked questions re is Borobudur Temple worth visiting?

How long do you need at Borobudur?

Half a day is enough to explore Borobudur Temple. For the best views, schedule your trip before sunrise.Β 

Can you go inside the Borobudur Temple?

Yes, you can go inside the Borobudur Temple, except on Mondays when preservation activities are performed.Β 

Can you wear shorts to Borobudur?

No. Borobudur is a temple, so please dress conservatively. Shorts and mini-skirts are not allowed. You also need to wear a sarong when visiting Borobudur Temple. If you don’t have one, you can borrow one from the entrance gate, like we did!

Is Borobudur one of the wonders of the world?

Borobudur Temple is not part of the new Seven Wonders of the World. But it is one of Indonesia’s UNESCO World Heritage Sites and is considered to be the largest Buddhist Temple in the world.

Why do people visit Borobudur?

Borobudur Temple is a Buddhist temple in Indonesia. People visit it for worship, meditation, and contemplation. It is also a place of pilgrimage for Buddhists, especially during Vesak Day. Local and foreign tourists also visit Borobudur Temple to explore this UNESCO World Heritage Site and learn more about its history.

What is special about Borobudur Temple?

Borobudur Temple is considered as the largest Buddhist temple compound in the world. Built in the 8th and 9th centuries AD, it is a UNESCO World Heritage Site in Magelang, Central Java, Indonesia, decorated with beautiful reliefs and with 504 Buddha statues.

Is sunrise at Borobudur worth it?

It is, especially if you want to take captivating photos of the Borobudur Temple at sunrise. However, from someone who visited it early in the morning but after sunrise, I can say that Borobudur Temple is also impressive at this time of the day.

Can you do Borobudur and Prambanan in one day?

Yes, you can visit Borobudur and Prambanan in one day. Schedule your trip to Borobudur in the morning; the views are best at sunrise. In the afternoon, you can explore the Prambanan Temple Complex and watch the sunset.

The Wrap-Up: Is Borobudur Temple Worth Visiting?

So, is Borobudur Temple worth visiting? Definitely! Whether you love visiting ancient temples (like me) or are fascinated by history and beautiful structures, you’ll enjoy spending a couple of hours there.

When I first booked a trip to Indonesia, I was primarily motivated by the Borobudur Temple. As of this writing, I’ve visited most Southeast Asian countries (and am looking forward to visiting more!), and I can say that Borobudur Temple is one of the best places I’ve visited in the region.

So, if you’re planning a trip to Indonesia, I invite you to include exploring Candi Borobudur in your itinerary. ‘Cos Borobudur Temple is worth visiting – definitely!

That’s it! Thank you for reading up to this point. I hope this article answered your question, “Is Borobudur Temple worth visiting?” If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me. I’d be happy to help!

P.S. Remember, life’s too short. Go create beautiful memories! And it’s my honor to be part of your journey.

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