Temple of Time

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This article is about the temple located in Hyrule. For the temple located in the Sacred Realm, see the Temple of Light.
Temple of Time
The outside of the Temple of Time, as seen in Ocarina of Time 3D
The Temple of Time in Ocarina of Time 3D
Game(s) Ocarina of Time
Twilight Princess
Skyward Sword
Other media Ocarina of Time manga
Link's Crossbow Training
Item(s) Light Arrow (OoT)
Dominion Rod (TP)
Goddess's Harp (SS)
Related place(s) Temple of Light
Sealed Temple
Theme Music
File:OOT Temple of Time.ogg (OoT)

The Temple of Time is the name shared by two temples, the original appearing in Skyward Sword and its successor in Ocarina of Time and Twilight Princess.[1][2] It is revealed in Twilight Princess that there is an entire dungeon section to the temple, accessible from a portal hidden behind a window in the back room.

Door of Time

Link places the Spiritual Stones on the pedestal before the Door of Time
The Door opens...

The Door of Time, located within the Temple of Time, is the powerful barrier that blocks access to the Pedestal of Time. The Master Sword, which is the key to entering the Sacred Realm, rests in this pedestal.

The door can only be opened by bringing together three Spiritual Stones: the Kokiri's Emerald, the Goron's Ruby, and the Zora's Sapphire.[3] When these three stones are brought together and the Song of Time is played with the Ocarina of Time at the altar, the door slides open and the path to the legendary blade is revealed.[4]

According to Princess Zelda, the Door of Time is, effectively, an obstacle to the Sacred Realm put in place when the Triforce was sealed away in the Temple of Light.[3] At the end of Ocarina of Time, after Link and Princess Zelda seal away Ganondorf in the void of the Evil Realm, Princess Zelda asks that Link return the Master Sword to its pedestal and close the Door of Time, at which point the "road between times will be closed."[5]

The Door of Time possibly made another appearance in Twilight Princess. At the entrance to the ruined temple, there is a single set of stone doors. When translated from ancient Hylian, the inscription upon them reads "Time Door." The mystical portal contained within these doors became the means through which the Link of Twilight Princess was able to travel back in time to visit the Temple of Time fully intact, as it stood in the days of his forbearer.

Historical Appearances

Skyward Sword

Zelda and Impa in front of a Gate of Time

The original, ancient Temple of Time that existed during the Era of the Goddess Hylia and the Era of the Sky appears in the northwestern section of the Lanayru Desert in the Lanayru Province. It is accessible after completing the Lanayru Mining Facility dungeon. When Link first arrives at this temple, he finds Zelda and Impa at the Gate of Time.[6] Ghirahim then bursts in on the brief reunion, but is held at bay by Impa while Zelda throws the Goddess's Harp to Link and tells him that he will need it.[7] Zelda and Impa escape through the gate and Impa uses a magical explosive to permanently destroy it, preventing Ghirahim from pursuing them.

This temple differs from its successor because it is an open air courtyard and is located in the desert. At the western edge of this temple is a monumental stone of the Hylian Crest and a Gate of Time.

The Era of Chaos and the Era of Prosperity

Many years after the events of Skyward Sword, there was an era of chaos with wars and fighting over the Triforce that was located in the Sacred Realm. To put an end to these wars, an ancient sage, Rauru, built over the remains of the Sealed Temple a new Temple of Time, which contained the only entrance to the Sacred Realm.[8][1] Using the Master Sword and the three Spiritual Stones as keys to the Sacred Realm, this new temple was the sanctified gateway between Hyrule and the Sacred Realm, and its purpose was to protect that gateway, and thus the Triforce, from evildoers who would seek to misuse it.[9][10][11] Inside the Temple of Time is a chamber that is home to the Master Sword and the Pedestal of Time; however, the entrance to this chamber is sealed by the Door of Time.[3] When the Master Sword was infused into the Pedestal of Time, it sealed that gateway in the hopes of preventing all but the most worthy to reach the Sacred Realm, where the sacred Triforce lies within the Temple of Light.

Within the temple stands a sacred altar which bears inscribed instructions to opening the Door of Time, which leads to the chamber of the Master Sword. The inscription reads that the person needs to have possession of all three Spiritual Stones, stand with the Ocarina of Time, and play the Song of Time.[4] It is said that only the Hero of Time may enter the secret chambers of the temple and draw the Master Sword.[12] If the Hero of Time withdraws the Master Sword from its pedestal, it will once again open the portal to the Sacred Realm, granting access to the Temple of Light.[13]

Ocarina of Time

The first room of the Temple of Time

During the Era of the Hero of Time, a few years after the Hyrulean Civil War that left him an orphan in Kokiri Forest, a young Link begins collecting the three Spiritual Stones from the Kokiri, Goron and Zora races to let him gain entry to the chamber in which the Master Sword resides. After collecting the three stones and getting the Ocarina of Time from a young Princess Zelda, who was fleeing Hyrule Castle with her nurse maid Impa, Link travels to the Temple of Time to acquire the Master Sword and enter the Sacred Realm in order to obtain the Triforce before Ganondorf does.[14] However, his spirit is unexpectedly sealed away for seven years by the Master Sword, for Link was not yet old enough to become the Hero of Time.[15] When Link finally awakens seven years later within the heart of the Sacred Realm, the Temple of Light, the ancient sage known as Rauru explains the kingdom of Hyrule's dire situation to him, gives him the Light Medallion, and charges him with the task of awakening six new sages so that all seven of them will have enough power to seal Ganondorf within the Sacred Realm and save the kingdom.[16]

In order to awaken all of the Sages, Link must keep returning to the Temple of Time to use the Pedestal of Time to travel in time back and forth seven years.[17] To help him with this, Princess Zelda, disguised as Sheik, teaches the young hero the Prelude of Light, a melody that he can play on his ocarina to quickly return to the Temple of Time any time he wishes.[18]

When Link has successfully awakened his childhood friend, the leader of the Gorons, the Zora princess, Princess Zelda's nanny and the female leader of the Gerudo theives as the new Sages, only one remains. Rauru advises him to go to the Temple of Time and meet with someone who is waiting for him there.[19] Here, Link meets Sheik, who reveals himself to be Princess Zelda as well as the seventh Sage.[20] After explaining the reason behind her hiding and her motives, the princess asks for Link's help one last time to defeat Ganondorf and grants him the Light Arrows, the only weapon that can penetrate the evil king's defenses.[21]

Upon defeating Ganondorf and being sent back in time seven years by a guilt-stricken Princess Zelda to relive the years of his childhood that he missed, Link leaves the Master Sword behind in its pedestal in the temple and steps out into what will be a new history caused by his foreknowledge of the future.

Twilight Princess

Main article: Temple of Time (Twilight Princess)
The main hall of the Temple of Time, as seen in the past

In the Era of Twilight, the Temple of Time has fallen into decay, becoming a complex of unidentifiable ruins still located in the Faron Woods, in an area deep within the Sacred Grove.[22] Its existence is now known to few simply as a legend of an ancient temple deep within the woods, tied to the early history of Hyrule.[23] The only thing that remains in place is the Pedestal of Time, where the Master Sword rests.

When Link briefly thrusts the Master Sword into the Pedestal of Time in the Sacred Grove, a statue that was blocking a nearby door is immediately removed. Entering through this door takes the hero an undisclosed amount of time into the past and allows him to explore the temple before it fell into deep ruin.

In the past, the Temple of Time is virtually identical to how it appears during the events of Ocarina of Time, with the exception of the missing Spiritual Stones altar. When the Master Sword is thrust into its pedestal, a blue staircase appears that can be used to reach the back window of the room, which grants access a previously hidden part of the temple that appears to be entirely separate from the kingdom of Hyrule itself. This new section of the temple acts as a dungeon from where Link can find the Dominion Rod and a missing piece of the fractured Mirror of Twilight. By stepping back through the temple's main entrance, Link is taken back to the present.

Link's Crossbow Training

Ambiguously Canon Content hide

The Temple of Time appears in two stages of Link's Crossbow Training. The first appearance in Stage 7 is a Ranger Mode Level in which Link's objective is to tour the temple and slay the Lizalfos. Only a few rooms and hallways of the Temple of Time are used in this game. In addition the Lizalfos, Keese, and Beamos will also be found attacking Link. The second appearance of the temple, in Stage 8, takes place in a single room within. In this room, Link battles a Darknut.



Theory Warning hide

Temple of Time/Light Temple

The Light Temple, located in the Sacred Realm, is unable to be fully explored in Ocarina of Time, though it is mentioned by Rauru and visited by the Hero of Time each time he frees one of the Seven Sages, in which he only visits the Chamber of Sages.[24] The Temple of Time in Twilight Princess contains an entire dungeon beyond the window in the Chamber of the Master Sword, seemingly leading to a place completely separate from Hyrule. The dungeon may be the unexplored areas of the Light Temple outside the Chamber of Sages.


In The Wind Waker, the Temple of Time is not shown, and the Master Sword sits in a chamber in the basement of Hyrule Castle. Because only a successor of the Hero of Time is supposed to be able to draw (and so move) the sword, and no known successor appeared prior to Hyrule's flooding, it would seem that the sword was unmoved between the events of Ocarina of Time and Wind Waker. In light of this, and the fact that the original Hyrule Castle was destroyed in the Adult Timeline, it is plausible that a new Hyrule Castle was built directly over the Temple of Time some time after Ganondorf's defeat, with its basement encompassing the sword's chamber. This is supported by the castle's close proximity to Ganon's Tower, which itself is likely a rebuilt version of the castle built over the original Hyrule Castle; in Ocarina of Time, the Temple of Time is fairly close to the castle.

Similarly, in A Link to the Past, Hyrule Castle eventually becomes the site linking the Light and Dark worlds, linking directly to the Pyramid of Power. For a multitude of reasons, the latter structure is theorized to be the Temple of Light, and if so, Hyrule Castle would therefore serve the exact purpose the Temple of Time served in Ocarina of Time. This would make it likely that the two structures are really one and the same and that, by virtue of this, Hyrule Castle was built over the Temple of Time in the Downfall Timeline as well.


In Ocarina of Time, the Temple of Time was located in Castle Town, near Hyrule Castle. But in Twilight Princess later in the Child Timeline, the Temple of Time is located much further to the south of Castle and Town, suggesting that one or the other was moved after the events of Ocarina of Time when Link was returned to his Child Timeline. And considering the relative locations of landmarks in Hyrule, it may be likely Castle and Town did not move north, unless most of Hyrule's other landmarks moved north as well. This strongly suggests that the Temple of Time was dismantled and rebuilt further south in its remote Sacred Grove location in Faron Woods. Because this Faron Temple of Time existed during the time of the Hero of Time, this suggests that the relocation may have happened very quickly within the Hero of Time's lifetime.

Considering Ganon's deception of the King of Hyrule and destruction of Castle and Town early in the Adult Timeline and Fallen Hero Timeline (before the two timelines branched) and the successful assault against Ganon early in the Child Timeline, the Temple of Time's highly accessible location in Town may have been deemed too vulnerable to future attacks, and its new Sacred Grove location was chosen (at least in part) because it was so remote and hard to reach by humans. Alternatively, the Temple of Time may have been destroyed early in the Child Timeline, rather than merely having been dismantled. The Sacred Grove's sacredness may have factored into the relocation decision, as it may have been sacred not because of the relocation of the Temple, but already sacred because it may have been the site of the old Sealed Temple atop the Sealed Grounds in Skyward Sword.

And because the Sacred Grove seems to have the same role as the Lost Woods and is apparently home to the same Skull Kid who befriended the Hero of Time, it is furthermore possible that the relocated Temple of Time was built on the site of the old Forest Temple, or not far from it.

This theory stands in contrast to the Master Sword's location in A Link to the Past in the Fallen Hero Timeline, which probably was the location of Castle Town's Temple of Time, near where the previous Castle and Town stood before Ganon destroyed them.



  1. 1.0 1.1 "Temple of Time: The only entrance to the Sacred Realm's Temple of Light, the Temple of Time shares the same name as the temple in the Lanayru Desert of the Era of the Goddess Hylia. It is thought that Rauru built the Temple of Time directly over the ruins of the Sealed Temple." (Hyrule Historia (Dark Horse Books), pg. 77)
  2. "Traces of the Era of the Hero of Time: [...] The Temple of Time, home to the Master Sword's pedestal, has rotted away and lies in ruins within the forest." (Hyrule Historia (Dark Horse Books), pg. 117)
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 "But the entrance is sealed with a stone wall called the Door of Time. And, in order to open the door, it is said that you need to collect three Spiritual Stones." — Princess Zelda (Ocarina of Time)
  4. 4.0 4.1 "Ye who owns 3 Spiritual Stone / Stand with the Ocarina of Time / And play the Song of Time" — Inscription (Ocarina of Time)
  5. "You must lay the Master Sword to rest and close the Door of Time... However, by doing this, the road between times will be closed..." — Princess Zelda (Ocarina of Time)
  6. "Your Grace! Quickly, to the gate!" — Impa (Skyward Sword)
  7. "[Link], here! You'll need this where you're going." — Zelda (Skyward Sword)
  8. "Rauru, the Sage of Light, constructed the Temple of Time, which contained the only existing entrance to the Sacred Realm, where the Triforce was located." (Hyrule Historia (Dark Horse Books), pg. 77)
  9. "The Temple of Time is the entrance through which you can enter the Sacred Realm from our world." — Princess Zelda (Ocarina of Time)
  10. "Ages ago, we ancient Sages built the Temple of Time to protect the entrance to the Sacred Realm..." — Rauru (Ocarina of Time)
  11. "So, the ancient Sages built the Temple of Time to protect the Triforce from evil ones." — Princess Zelda (Ocarina of Time)
  12. "The Master Sword is a sacred blade which evil ones may never touch.... Only one worthy of the title of "Hero of Time" can pull it from the Pedestal of Time...." — Rauru (Ocarina of Time)
  13. "The Temple of Light, situated in the very center of the Sacred Realm, is the last stronghold against Ganondorf's evil forces. The Master Sword--the evil-destroying sword that you pulled out of the Pedestal of Time--was the final key to the Sacred Realm." — Rauru (Ocarina of Time)
  14. "We must not let Ganondorf get the Triforce! I will protect the Ocarina of Time with all my power! He shall not have it! You go find the other two Spiritual Stones! Let's get the Triforce before Ganondorf does, and then defeat him!" — Princess Zelda (Ocarina of Time)
  15. "The Master Sword is a sacred blade which evil ones may never touch... Only one worthy of the title of "Hero of Time" can pull it from the Pedestal of Time.... However, you were too young to be the Hero of Time... Therefore, your spirit was sealed here for seven years. And now that you are old enough, the time has come for you to awaken as the Hero of Time!" — Rauru (Ocarina of Time)
  16. "I, Rauru, am one of the Sages... And... Your power to fight together with the Sages makes you the Hero of Time! The Hero of Time, chosen by the Master Sword! Keep my spirit with you... And, find the power of the other Sages and add their might to your own!" — Rauru (Ocarina of Time)
  17. "In order to awaken all the other Sages, you must become even more powerful. You must travel over mountains...under water...and even through time... If you want to return to your original time, return the Master Sword to the Pedestal of Time. By doing this, you will travel back in time seven years..." — Sheik (Ocarina of Time)
  18. "The time will come when you will have to return here quickly... I will teach this to you for when that time comes... The song to return you to the Temple of Time... The Prelude of Light..." — Sheik (Ocarina of Time)
  19. "Link, the hero! Finally, all of us, the six Sages, have been awakened! The time for the final showdown with the King of Evil has come! Before that, though, you should meet the one who is waiting for you... The one who is waiting for you at the Temple of Time..." — Rauru (Ocarina of Time)
  20. "And the other, who holds the Triforce of Wisdom...is the seventh Sage, who is destined to be the leader of them all...It is I, the Princess of Hyrule, Zelda." — Princess Zelda (Ocarina of Time)
  21. "Link... In order to do this, I need your courage again. Please protect me while I do my part. And here is a weapon that can penetrate the Evil King's defenses... The power given to the chosen ones... The sacred Arrow of Light!!!" — Princess Zelda (Ocarina of Time)
  22. "Do you know about the far side of this deep gorge? Some say there is an ancient temple deep in the woods that guards a sacred power." — Rusl (Twilight Princess)
  23. "The ancestors of the Hylians created the temple... Signs of their civilization--ancient, but very sophisticated--are everywhere." — Rusl (Twilight Princess)
  24. "This is the Chamber of Sages, inside the Temple of Light..." — Rauru (Ocarina of Time)
Forest minish.png Names in Other Regions Jabber Nut MC.gif
Language Name Meaning
Japanese Japan 時の神殿 (Toki no Shinden)
Spanish Spanish-speaking countries Templo del Tiempo
French French-speaking countries Temple du Temps
Temple du temps (OoT3D)
German Germany Zitadelle der Zeit
Italian Italy Santuario del Tempo (OoT3D) Sanctuary of Time
Chinese Taiwan, Hong Kong and Macau (Traditional Chinese) 時之神殿
Mainland China (Simplified Chinese) 时光之神殿

Hyrule in Skyward Sword
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