Fountain of Qaitbay

Touring Jerusalem

Amid the hallowed grounds of the Temple Mount in Jerusalem, a lesser-known but no less captivating architectural gem awaits discovery—the Fountain of Qaitbay. Nestled within the heart of this sacred site, this beautifully preserved fountain is a testament to the rich history and intricate architecture that define Jerusalem’s complex heritage.

Credit: Andrew Shiva – Wikipedia – CC BY-SA 4.0

A Glimpse of the Temple Mount

The Temple Mount, known as Haram al-Sharif in Arabic, is a site of profound religious significance for Muslims and Jews. It is home to the iconic Dome of the Rock and Al-Aqsa Mosque, making it one of the holiest places in the world. Amidst the grandeur of these religious landmarks, the Fountain of Qaitbay offers a quieter yet equally compelling narrative.

Fountain of Qayt Bay
The stone Dome of the Fountain.

A Fountain with a Royal Legacy

The Fountain of Qaitbay is an architectural relic from the Mamluk period, built during the 15th century. It is named after its patron, Sultan Qaitbay, the eighth ruler of the Mamluk Sultanate. This ornate structure was part of Qaitbay’s effort to renovate and beautify the Al-Aqsa Mosque complex, demonstrating the sultan’s commitment to preserving Jerusalem’s religious and cultural heritage.

Exquisite Design and Intricate Details

The fountain’s design is a marvel of Islamic architecture, characterized by intricate geometric patterns, delicate Arabic calligraphy, and elegant stonework. It features a central octagonal basin with a stone dome. The aesthetics of the fountain are a testament to the Mamluk dynasty’s dedication to craftsmanship and artistic expression.

Furthermore, Qaitbay had a taste for architecture and left his mark on all the cities he visited. Moreover, in Jerusalem, which he toured in 1480, many buildings were built on his initiative and with his funding. The two most beautiful of which are located west of the Temple Mount are Sabil Qaitbay and Madrasaa Al-Ashrafiyya.

Temple Mount

Fountain of Qaitbay – A Spiritual Oasis

The Fountain of Qaitbay has served practical and spiritual purposes throughout history. Pilgrims and visitors would use the fountain for ablutions or ritual cleansing before entering the Al-Aqsa Mosque for prayers. Today, it symbolizes tranquility and spiritual reflection, offering a serene oasis amidst the bustling Temple Mount.

Visiting the Fountain of Qaitbay

Exploring the Fountain of Qaitbay is a journey into the rich tapestry of Jerusalem’s history and culture. While the Temple Mount is a susceptible and regulated area, guided tours may provide access to this hidden treasure, offering a unique opportunity to appreciate its architectural beauty and historical significance.

A Close-Up on Qaitbay Mausoleum in Egypt. Without a Doubt, the Fountain imitates the Monumental Mausoleum Style.
Credit: Robert Prazeres, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

As you stand before the Fountain of Qaitbay, take a moment to reflect on the centuries of history it has witnessed, the prayers it has seen, and the enduring role it plays in connecting the present to the past. It is a reminder of the beauty and complexity of Jerusalem’s cultural mosaic, where faith, history, and art converge to create a timeless legacy.


Hi! My name is Arik, an Israeli native who dedicated his life to sharing my passion for the Holy Land with those interested in knowing more about this incredible piece of land. I’m the Chief Guide at ‘APT Private Tours in Israel’.

Did you know the Hoopoe is Israel's national bird?! For more cool info about Israel, join our ever growing community and get exclusive travel tips, and giveaways!

Shiloh Excavations In The City Of David


Five Most Beautiful Places in Israel

Do you want to experience Israel like never before? Here is the five most beautiful places in Israel that you have to visit!


Reḥovot is a vibrant city on the coastal plain in central Israel and the heart of the country’s most productive citrus belt. The town was ...

Gihon Spring

Join us as we delve into the captivating story of the Gihon Spring and its profound impact on the city's past and present.

Ice Mall Eilat

Ice Mall Eilat is a unique entertainment complex is a refreshing oasis where families can escape the heat and immerse in fun activities.

Beit Guvrin National Park

Beit Guvrin National Park is an archaeological site that preserves the ruins of the ancient city of Maresha and the caves of Beit Guvrin.

Yitzhak Rabin Center

The Yitzhak Rabin Center is a museum, and educational institution in Tel Aviv dedicated to the life and legacy of Yitzhak Rabin, one of Israel’s ...

Wadi Murabba’at Nature Reserve

The Wadi Murabba’at Nature Reserve, known as the Nahal Darga Nature Reserve is one of the best hikes that runs through the Judaean Desert.

ANZAC Memorial Center

The Anzac Memorial Centre is a tribute to the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps soldiers who fought in the Battle of Be'er Sheva.

Church of Saint Andrew

The Church of Saint Andrew in Acre is a historic religious site with cultural and spiritual significance, dedicated to Saint Andrew.

Amud Stream Nature Reserve

Amud Stream Nature Reserve is a great way to relax and unplug from the world. On the way discover ancient history and hike amazing trails.

Need help?