In 1981, Ir. Ida Bagus Gede Yadnya, won an architecture competition held by the provincial government for the Bajra Sandhi Monument. The competition was to award the winner with the project of building a monument to the memory of Balinese Struggle.
Ida Bagus Mantra, the former Governor of Bali, was the man who initiated the monument project, and the monument was to be built for the memory of the hard work and heroic struggle of the Balinese before and after independence. Somehow the building process of the monument was also a kind of a struggle. With the process started in 1981 but stuck for several years.
The monument is located in Niti Mandala, Renon, Denpasar, an area where most of the government offices are located. It stands majestically in the middle of a green field that is usually used by the public for sports such as jogging, soccer and basket ball during early morning or evening sessions and is always full of people doing activities on Sunday mornings.
The architecture of the monument is very unique, taking the shape of Bajra or Genta, a bell that used by Hindu Priests during religious ceremonies. It is also a symbol of the bond between males and females that creates prosperity according to the epic that tells the story of the Gods struggle to get the Water of Eternity.
Every statue and each carving in the monument compound has its own meaning. The whole of the monument symbolizes Mount Mandara where, according to the epic Mahabarath, the Gods had a battle with giants fighting for the Water of Eternity. The architecture also symbolises nationalism with 17 main gates, 8 pillars and the monument reaching a height of 45 meter, to reflect 17 August 1945 the independence day of the country.
Entering the monument, from the drop off point you have to climb the stairs that bring you to a garden then there are more stairs to climb to get inside where there is a round pond with fish in it. Then there is another stair to get to the main hall where you can see a range of dioramas telling the story of Balinese life from the Stone Age till the independence era.
The Bajra Sandhi has a chamber on the top where the only access is the stairs in the middle of the pond. From the chamber, you can see the green grass of the field, rooftops of houses, and buildings around dominating the scene. The unique design of the Bajra Sandhi attracts many visitors every day, and art exhibitions such as photo or painting competition are taking place quiet often in the exhibition room.
There’s an even nicer view from outside the diorama hall, where you can enjoy the scenery while savoring the breeze.