It is a Hindu temple of Shiva that was built in the early 9th century by Rakai Garung, the King of Mataram Hindu of the Syailendra dynasty.
Sambisari temple stands about 7 meters from the ground. According to estimates, the temple was buried by sand and rocks of the mountain of Merapi in 1006 AD.
Sambisari temple consists of one main temple and three temples Perwara (guardian) located in front of the main temple.
The main entrance of Sambisari temple is located on the west side, on the entrance staircase equipped with a sculptured decoration of a pair of Dragon heads with a gaping mouth. The dragon’s head is supported by a sculptured decoration of Gana in a squatting position with the hand propping upwards. Gana is a small shrine of Shiva accompaniment, so Gana is also referred to as Syiwaduta.
On the threshold of the entrance to the temple room, there is a carved Kalamakara without a lower jaw.
On the outside of the walls of the temple are sculptures. on the north side wall, there is Durga Mahisasuramardini statue. on the east wall, there is Ganesha statue while on the south side wall there is Arca Agastya or Shiva Mahaguru
Durga Mahisasuramardini statue, namely Durga as the goddess of death. As in the Shiva temple in Prambanan, Durga is also described as an eighth-handed goddess in a position standing on Nandi’s Ox. One of his right hands is in a reclining position on a club, while the other three hold each arrow, sword and disc. One left-hand holds the head of Asura, while the other three arms hold bows, shields and flowers. Asura is a dwarf giant dwarf Durga. Asura in Sambisari temple is slightly different from Asura in Shiva temple (Prambanan), Asura in Sambisari temple depicted in kneeling position. The goddess Durga at Sambisari Temple is also described as more sensual, judging from her standing position, a short hip cover cloth that shows her thighs, more prominent breasts, and a smile that adorns her lips.
The Ganesha statue on the outer wall of the east side is depicted in a cross-legged position on the Padmasana (the throne of the lotus flower) with the soles of the feet meeting each other. This statue is similar to Ganesha statue located in the eastern shrine of Shiva temple in Prambanan temple. The difference is the right palm of this statue riding on the knee in a tengadah position, while the left palm supports a bowl. The end of the trunk seemed to suck something from inside the bowl.
The Shiva statue on the outer wall of the south side is depicted as the figure of a two-legged man and a beard standing on a Padma (lotus). To his right was a trident, a three-eyed spear which was a Shiva’s weapon. This statue is similar to the statue of Shiva Mahaguru contained in the southern shrine of the Temple Shiva in Prambanan Temple Complex, it’s just a slimmer body.