Candi Prambanan

Candi Prambanan is the grandest temple in Java apart from Borobudur. Located on the Prambanan plain, this sprawling temple complex sits majestically in an open area about twenty kilometers south of Mount Merapi, which dominates the horizon. The temple was constructed in the early ninth century by the Sanjaya dynasty, a flourishing Hindu kingdom that shared the island with the Buddhist Saliendra dynasty that built Borobudur. The relationship between the two dynasties is not clear, but one theory maintains that the Sanjayas constructed Candi Prambanan as a symbol of dynastic power in response to the construction of Borobudur. However, the Sanjayas do not seem to have been particularly antagonistic toward the Buddhist faith of the Saliendras—indeed, the temple complex is located just a few hundred meters south of Candi Sewu, a once awe-inspiring marvel of Buddhist art.

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