Candi Sambisari is located in Sambisari Hamlet, Purwomartani Village, Kalasan, Sleman, Jogja. It is 15 km northeast of the city. This temple is Siva temple built in the 9th century by Rakai Garung, mataram Hindu King from Syailendra Dynasty.
This temple was found accidently by local farmer, and then Balai Arkeologi Yogyakarta did research and excavation. In 1966, reported that a temple was buried under sand and stones of Mt Merapi in 1906. Reconstruction and restoration finished in 1987.
Candi Sambisari is situated 6.5 meters beneath the earth surface, that it is invisible from distance. When the temple was built the area was as high as the surrounding, and then after Merapi eruption in 1006 the area was heaped up. The temple was heaped up as well, that the position was lower that its surrounding, but now temple territory has been dug up and constructed in square with stairs on every side.
The temple complex is encircled with 2 fence layers covers 50 m x 48 m surrounded by low stone block fence, while the inner yard is surrounded by 50 cm thick and 2 meters high stone block fence. Every side is constructed with one entrance without gate or decoration. Candi Sambisari constitutes of one main temple and 2 perwara temple located vis-a-vis to main temple that now only the platform that remained. Perwara temple is square with 4.8 m square size. The height of main temple is 7.5 meters, the platform is square 13.65 meters square and height 2 meters. Temple body is also square with 5 m square size, that hallway is created. Temple was built without decoration , but the outer wall is decorated with refined floral and creeping plants carving. Stairs to the hallway is located at the west side, completed with railing that is decorated with dragon head with Gana in squat ornamenting it. Gana
Kaki candi polos tanpa hiasan, namun bagian luar dinding langkan dihiasi seretan pahatan bermotif bunga dan sulur-suluran yang sangat halus pahatannya. Gana are putting their hands up as they support the dragon head. Gana is also called as Syiwaduta, is Syiva attendant. Gana figure also found on the entrance of big temples in Prambanan Temple. On top of the stair located paduraksa gate framed with paper motive carving. Lower frame is depicted dragon head with open mouth, also entrance to the chamber is decorated with same carving, only on the upper entrance is decorated with kalamakara with lower jaw.
On every side of the outer wall, found niches with statuary inside. South niche is occupied by Agastya (Syiva Mahaguru) statue, East side by Ganesha statue, and north side by Durga Mahisasuramardini statue.
Syiva is a man with 2 hands, bearded standing on padma. On the right side there is trisula, three-eyed pike, the weapon of Syiva. This statue resembles one on the south side of Siva Temple complex in Candi Prambanan, only the shape is slimmer. Ganesha statue figure is sitting on padmasana (lotus throne) with 2 feet meet and the left foot support a bowl and his trunk tip seems sucking something from the bowl. Durga Mahisasuramardini, is Durga as goddess of death. As in Prambanan, Durga figure here has 8 hands, standing on Nandi. She holds club, arrow, sword , cakra, asura, arc, shield and flower. Unlike in Siva Temple, Asura, Durga attendant, figure is squat in this temple. And even Durga in this temple is represent more sensual figure from how she stands, short cloth that covers her body that shows her thighs, more protruding breasts and sexy smile.
Temple chamber is occupied with lingga and yoni. Lingga is made of white stone block, while yoni is made of dark shiny stone block. On the edge of lingga, there is channel to accomodate water for ritual to be streamed to faucet outside, that is decorated with snake head.