Dome of the Rock

The elaborately tiled entrance to the Dome of the Rock, Israel
The elaborately tiled entrance to the Dome of the Rock, Israel


LOCATION The Dome of the Rock is on the eastern edge of Jerusalem, at the foot of the Mount of Olives


Completed 691


Jan: 48°F (9°C); Apr: 63°F (17°C); Jul: 75°F (24°C); Oct: 70°F (21°C)

The Dome of the Rock is the earliest Islamic building to have survived in its original form to the present day. Intended as a shrine for pilgrims, it was completed under the Umayyad caliph Abd al-Malik, and stands near the center of the Haram al-Sharif (“The Noble Sanctuary”), or Temple Mount, a site important to both Muslim and Jewish faiths.
Its octagonal form is derived from local Christian church architecture, and the interior is decorated with glittering mosaics that reveal Byzantine influence. It has undergone several restorations, notably in the 1540s by Süleyman the Magnificent, who replaced the colorful tiles on the exterior. The central dome was originally covered in pure gold, but this has now been replaced by anodized aluminium, coated in gold leaf.

Practical Information

Getting There and Around Fly to Tel Aviv, from where there are buses and train links to Jerusalem. Temple Mount is accessible by bus or taxi.

When to Go Spring (Mar–May) is usually dry, sunny, and pleasantly warm.

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