The large temple complex at Muara Jambi, 26km downstream from Jambi, is the most important Hindu-Buddhist site in Sumatra. It is assumed that the temples mark the location of the ancient city of Jambi, capital of the kingdom of Malayu 1000 years ago. Most of the temples, known as candi, date from the 9th to the 13th centuries, when Jambi’s power was at its peak. However the best artefacts have been taken to Jakarta.
For centuries the site lay abandoned and overgrown in the jungle on the banks of the Batang Hari. It was ‘rediscovered’ in 1920 by a British army expedition sent to explore the region.