Gates of Heaven, popular tourist spot in Bali, is actually an illusion!

For years, we’ve been made to believe that popular Bali tourist location, Gates of Heaven, is ‘goals’. Well, it is goals — except it isn’t exactly real! The lake we all see in photos does not exist! It’s merely a reflection of a mirror. And it was all an idea of one person. How genius!


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At the Gates of Heaven 🙌✨ 📍 Pura Lempuyang, Bali 📸 @bradflowerss

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Bali’s Lempuyang Temple – known to the western world as ‘The Gates of Heaven’ isn’t what it seems

Influencers do know how to ‘influence’!

It takes hours to get a chance to pose at The Gates of Heaven. Yet Instagram influencers still manage to take the best shots, making us yearn to go there. However, recent visits have revealed that were sold fake dreams the whole time!

Renowned journalist Polina Marinova, is one of those who were shocked to find out the truth. Before her visit to Bali weeks ago, Polina had high hopes of seeing the lovely ‘lake’ between the temple’s gates. Only to find out it was an illusion!

“My hopes and dreams were shattered when I found out the ‘water’ at the Gates of Heaven is actually just a piece of glass under an iPhone,” she tweeted on Wednesday. “Proof that Instagram influencers have ruined everything.”


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Speaking to INSIDER, the young journalist further explained how bummed she felt.

“That’s really disappointing because the Lempuyang Temple is one of Bali’s oldest and most highly regarded temples,” she said. “So to see so many people waiting hours to take their photo rather than walking around the grounds of the temple says a lot about what we value in 2019.”

“There is a long winding line on the side, and hundreds of people are watching you pose at the Gates of Heaven,” she continued.

“Most, if not all, the people in the line were tourists, and there were definitely people who had prepared for this moment. Some did yoga poses, others jumped in the air, and on several occasions, people did a redo because they didn’t like how their pictures came out. I mean, it was over the top.”

Ms Marinova added that visitors are only allowed five (5) poses at the spot.

“It looked absolutely breathtaking. But of course, it being Instagram, no one had included in the caption that it wasn’t real, so I just assumed there was water there.”

The journalist put her disappointment in a tweet, which has been retweeted thousands of times.

Others shared their experiences

Following Polina’s outcry, many others came out to share their personal experiences. One unnamed Australian tourist told Yahoo Australia the very same thing;

“[It’s] totally faked. All they do is get a little reflective piece of glass and put it under the lens of the camera.”

“People drive there for two hours and line up for one hour. It’s quite ridiculous.”

Another user replied to Polina’s tweet, saying she felt ‘catfished’, after arriving at Bali 2 weeks ago to see no water.

One person sent in the original photo of the place, and another on Instagram posted a picture to show how long the queue can get.


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Gates of Heaven, popular tourist spot in Bali, is actually an illusion!

Polina, however, applauded the Bali locals for the idea, suggesting that something like that should be done in New York’s Central Park.

And oh, the pictures are free, but you could donate a dollar or two 😉

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Amanda Lucy


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