Places of Worship, Religious Buildings

Churches, synagogues, temples, mosques, assemblies, meetings and other places of worship and prayer. This category also includes buildings no longer used for their original religious purposes.

Abu Simbel

Egypt
Abu-Simbel
These twin temples were carved out of the mountainside during the reign of Pharaoh Ramesses II in the 13th century BC. Their relocation in the 1960's was necessary to avoid their being submerged during the creation of Lake Nasser.top

Akshardham

New Delhi, Delhi, 110092, India
Akshardham
Akshardham is a Hindu temple complex which displays millennia of traditional Hindu and Indian culture, spirituality, and architecture. In addition to the large central temple crafted entirely of stone, the complex features exhibitions on Hinduism and thetop

Batu Caves

Selangor, Malaysia
Batu-Caves
Batu Caves is one of the most popular Hindu shrines outside India, and is dedicated to Lord Murugan. It is the focal point of Hindu festival of Thaipusam in Malaysia.top

Cathedral of Notre Dame de Paris

Paris, Île-de-France Region, France
Cathedral-of-Notre-Dame-de-Paris
Some say Notre Dame is possibly the most famous of cathedrals. The Roman Catholic cathedral is famous for its architecture, the historical events that took place there, and as the setting for the story "The Hunchback of Notre Dame."top

Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception of Ouagadougou

Ouagadougou, Kadiogo, Burkina Faso
Cathedral-of-the-Immaculate-Conception-of-Ouagadougou
Ouagadougou Cathedral is the cathedral of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Ouagadougou. It was built in the 1930s and is one of the largest cathedrals in the western African countries. The building material is mudbrick, traditional in the region.top

Cologne Cathedral

Cologne, North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany
Cologne-Cathedral
Cologne Cathedral was built to house the relics of the Three Kings. The church was to be built in the Gothic style, based in particular on the French cathedral of Amiens. The foundation stone was laid on 15 August 1248.top

Cotonou Cathedral

Cotonou, Littoral Department, Benin
Cotonou-Cathedral
The cathedral of Notre Dame de Miséricorde is a Roman Catholic cathedral noted for its distinct burgundy and white striped tiled architecture. The cathedral is the seat of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Cotonou.top

Dresden Frauenkirche Church of Our Lady

Dresden, Saxony, Germany
Dresden-Frauenkirche-Church-of-Our-Lady
While Dresden Frauenkirche is a Lutheran church, the original church was Roman Catholic until it became Protestant during the Reformationtop

El Castillo

Yucatan, Mexico
El-Castillo
Built by the Maya civilization sometime between the 11th and 13th centuries AD, "El Castillo" served as a temple to the god Kukulcan.top

Golden Temple Harmandir Sahib

Amritsar, Punjab, India
Golden-Temple-Harmandir-Sahib
The Golden Temple houses the Adi Granth (the holy book of the Sikhs) comprising compositions of Sikh Gurus and other saints considered to have Sikh values and philosophies.top

Great Buddha of Kamagaya

Kamagaya, Chiba Prefecture, Japan
Great-Buddha-of-Kamagaya
The Great Buddha of Kamagaya is the smallest Daibutsu (Buddhist statue) in Japan. It was completed in November 1776.top

Hassan II Mosque

Casablanca, Greater Casablanca, Morocco
Hassan-II-Mosque
Designed by the French architect Michel Pinseau and built by Bouygues, the mosque is the second largest in the world. Its minaret is the world's tallest at 210 meters (689 ft).top

Horezu Monastery

Horezu, Wallachia, Romania
Horezu-Monastery
The Monastery of Horezu was founded in 1690 by Prince Constantin Brâncoveanu. It is known for its architectural purity and balance, the richness of its sculpted detail, its treatment of religious compositions, its votive portraits, and its painted decorattop

Imam Reza Shrine

Mashhad, Razavi Khorasan, Iran
Imam-Reza-Shrine
In 818 Imam Reza was buried here. Shias and sunnis started visiting there for pilgrimage of his grave. By the end of the 9th century a dome was built on the grave and many buildings and Bazaars sprang up around it. top

Kinkaku-ji: Temple of the Golden Pavilion

Kyoto, Kyoto Prefecture, 603-8361, Japan
Kinkaku-ji:-Temple-of-the-Golden-Pavilion
The Golden Pavilion functions as a shariden, housing relics of the Buddha (Buddha's Ashes). The gold covering the outside of the structure is meant to reflect the importance of the shrine inside.top

Leaning Tower of Pisa

Pisa, Tuscany, Italy
Leaning-Tower-of-Pisa
The famous tower is a free standing bell tower for the Cathedral of Pisa. It stands behind the Cathedral and is the third oldest structure in Pisa's Cathedral Square.top

Lotus Temple

New Delhi, Delhi, 110019, India
Lotus-Temple
Like all other Bahá'í Houses of Worship, the Lotus Temple is open to all, regardless of religion, or any other distinction, as emphasized in Bahá'í texts. The Bahá'í laws emphasize that the spirit of the House of Worship be that it is a gathering place where people of all religions may worship God wtop

Metéora

Thessaly, Greece
Metéora
The Metéora is a set of six monasteries that were built on natural sandstone rock pillars, at the northwestern edge of the Plain of Thessaly near the Pineios river and Pindus Mountains.top

Minaret of Jam

Shahrak District, Ghōr Province, Afghanistan
Minaret-of-Jam
The Minaret of Jam is a 62-metre high minaret that was built in the 1190s entirely of baked-bricks. It is famous for its intricate brick, stucco and glazed tile decoration, geometric patterns, and verses from the Qur'an.top

Mont Saint-Michel

Manche Department, 50170, France
Mont-Saint-Michel
According to legend, the Archangel Michael appeared in 708 to St. Aubert, the bishop of Avranches, and instructed him to build a church on the rocky islet of Mont Saint-Michel. The current abbey was begun in the 11th century. top

Pantheon

Rome, Lazio Region, 00186 Roma, Italy
Pantheon
In 609, the Byzantine emperor Phocas gave the building to Pope Boniface IV, who converted it into a Christian church and consecrated it to Santa Maria ad Martyres, now known as Santa Maria dei Martiri.top

Parthenon

Athens, Greece
Parthenon
The Parthenon is a temple of the Greek goddess Athena, built in the 5th century BC. It is the most important surviving building of Classical Greece. Its decorative sculptures are considered one of the high points of Greek art.top

Pena National Palace

Sintra, Lisboa, 2710-609, Portugal
Pena-National-Palace
The Pena National Palace's history started in the Middle Ages when a chapel dedicated to Our Lady of Pena was built on the top of the hill above Sintra. An earthquake in 1755 leveled the monastery that was built later.top

Potala Palace

Lhasa, Tibet Autonomous Region, China
Potala-Palace
The Potala Palace was the chief residence of the Dalai Lama until the 14th Dalai Lama fled to Dharamsala, India after an invasion and failed uprising in 1959. Today the Potala Palace has been converted into a museum by the Chinese.top

Roman Temples at Baalbek

Baalbek, Lebanon
Roman-Temples-at-Baalbek
Baalbeck, with its colossal structures, is one of the finest examples of Imperial Roman architecture at its height. Known as Heliopolis, the city was one of the largest sanctuaries in the Empire.top

Sagrada Família Church of the Holy Family

Barcelona, Catalonia, 08013, Spain
Sagrada-Família-Church-of-the-Holy-Family
The main nave was covered and an organ installed in mid-2010, allowing the still unfinished building to be used for religious services. In November, 2010, Pope Benedict XVI consecrated and proclaimed Sagrada Família a minor basilica.top

Saint Basil's Cathedral

Moscow, Central Federal District, Russia
Saint-Basil's-Cathedral
It's actual name is the Cathedral of Intercession of the Virgin on the Moat, but it is also called the Cathedral of Saint Basil the Blessed, as part of it was built above the grave of St. Basil.top

Saint Joseph's Oratory

Montreal, Quebec, H3V 1H6, Canada
Saint-Joseph's-Oratory
In 1924, the construction of the basilica of Saint Joseph's Oratory was begun. The two churches that sat on the land before were not big enough to hold the congregation. The Oratory was finally completed in 1967.top

Sistine Chapel

Vatican City
Sistine-Chapel
While known as the location of Papal conclaves, the primary function of the Sistine Chapel is as the Papal Chapel. The Sistine Chapel has maintained its function to the present day, and continues to host the important services of the Papal Calendar, unless the Pope is traveling.top

Site of the Buddhas of Bamiyan

Bamyan Province, Afghanistan
Site-of-the-Buddhas-of-Bamiyan
The Bamiyam Valley was a Buddhist religious site from the 2nd century up to the time of the Islamic invasion in the later half of the 7th century. It was a tradition for monks to paint frescoes or carve statues.top

St Paul's Cathedral

London, Greater London, EC4M 8AD, England
St-Paul's-Cathedral
In 1666, the Fire of London destroyed teh Old St. Paul's. It was decided to build a new cathedral, and on 2 December 1697, only 32 years and 3 months after the Great Fire destroyed Old St Paul's, the new cathedral was consecrated for use.top

St. Margaret's Church

London, Greater London, SW1A 2PW, England
St.-Margaret's-Church
Dedicated to Margaret of Antioch and originally founded in the 12th century by Benedictine monks, St. Margaret's was rebuilt from 1486 to 1523. It became the parish of the Palace of Westminster (Parliament) in 1614.top

St. Peter's Basilica

Vatican City
St.-Peter's-Basilica
There has been a church on this site since the time of the Roman Emperor Constantine the Great. St. Peter's is one of the four churches of Rome that hold the rank of Major Basilica.top

Stonehenge

Salisbury Plain, Wiltshire, England
Stonehenge
Stonehenge is composed of earthworks surrounding a circular setting of large standing stones and sits at the centre of the densest complex of Neolithic and Bronze Age monuments in England.top

The Last Supper

Milan, Lombardy Region, Italy
The-Last-Supper
The painting is in the reflectory (dining room) of the convent of Santa Maria delle Grazie, a Dominican church in Milan. top

Tsodilo

Kalahari Desert, Botswana
Tsodilo
Tsodilo is a set of four hills that have unique religious and spiritual significance to local peoples, as well as containing unique record of human settlement over many millennia. It contains over 4,500 rock paintings.top

Wat Arun Temple of Dawn

Bangkok, Central Thailand Region, 10600, Thailand
Wat-Arun-Temple-of-Dawn
Inside of the Wat Arun is a Buddha image, cast in the reign of Rama II, that is said to have been molded by King Rama II himself. The ashes of the king are interred in the base of the image.top

Westminster Abbey

London, Greater London, SW1A 2PW, England
Westminster-Abbey
Westminster Abbey is the traditional place of coronation and burial site for English and later British monarchs. It briefly held the status of a cathedral from 1546-1556, and is currently a Royal Peculiar directly under the jurisdiction of the monarch.top


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