Thetraveljunkie.org – Candi Sukuh; one of the most unique and beautiful Javanese Hindu temples, will take you on a journey through the sexual tantra practiced in Java in the 15th century. A Javanese-Hindu temple, it is located on the western side of Mt Lawu, the border between Central and East Java provinces.
The temple rises reminiscent of a Mayan monument, surrounded by monoliths and life sized carved figures. Its main monument is a simple pyramid structure with reliefs and statues in front of it, including three tortoises with flattened shells and a male figure grasping his penis.
Various reliefs depict Hindu characters incluging Bhima, the blacksmith, Ganesha and Arjuna. Two large tortoises guard the entrance and a third lies at the front of the monument. All of their heads point to the west and their flattened shells may provide altars for purification rituals and ancestor worship.
In Hindu mythology, the tortoise symbolizes the base or support of the World and is an avatar of Vishnu.
Along with Candi Cetho, we loved these Javanese temples and would recommend taking a day out of a Jogjakarta or Solo trip to visit.
Happy Sustainable Travels!