Dome of Soltaniyeh

Zanjan attractions, Iran attractions

The mausoleum of Oljaytu was constructed in 1302–12 in the city of Soltaniyeh, the capital of the Ilkhanid dynasty, which was founded by the Mongols.
One of the significant reasons for its popularity is in terms of height; The Dome of Soltaniyeh is known as the third most famous dome in the world after the Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore and Hagia Sophia mosque. Dome of Soltaniyeh is the tomb of Öljaitü which has been built under the command of Öljaitü, the king of the Mongols. During the construction process of the Dome of Soltaniyeh Öljaitü became a Muslim. He decided to move the grave of Imam Ali from Najaf to Soltaniyeh after visiting the shrine in Najaf. He faced the opposition of Shia scholars and made there as the tomb of himself. Finally, he used the soil of Najaf to construct the Dome of Soltaniyeh.

 Dome of Sultaniye

This dome is an astonishing attraction of Zanjan province that has been registered on the UNESCO World Heritage list. The Dome of Soltaniyeh with a weight of 1600 tons has been standing for 700 years with subsidence of eight centimeters.
His mausoleum, as an artistic masterpiece of Iranian and Islamic architecture, is the first monument through which we can clearly follow the evolution process of Persian-Islamic architecture from Seljuk to Ilkhanid. Brick is the main material used in this building. This structure is made of a mixture of gypsum and to a lesser proportion limestone.  This structure has 8 elevated porticoes and about 50 chambers, including an area that is also similar to a chamber.

 Dome of Soltanieh in Zanjan

The ground floor consists of eight portions. The first floor comprises of the halls which run throughout this floor. On the third floor is the foundation column of the dome and the octagonal pillars supporting the minarets.
Different parts of this monument are as follows:
Torbat Khaneh
This part is placed on the southern side with a length of 17 meters, a width of 8 meters, and a height of 16 meters. Torbat means an amount of soil that belongs to a holy shrine. Öljaitü has also used the soil of Najaf to the construction of this part. This part is known as Torbat Khaneh because the wall of Mihrab written in Kufic and Thuluth script using the soil of Husayn ibn Ali shrine.

This part is placed on the southern side, under the Torbat Khaneh. Sardabe is the place where Öljaitü was buried. The entrance of this part has a low height to respect the dead person.

Gonbad Khaneh
This part is the place of the dome which contains a two-shelled dome with a height of 50 meters. This two-shelled dome makes it resistant to the earthquake. This dome has some light wells which were as the clock during that era.

 Oljayto Dom Zanjan

What is the best time to go?
Due to the mountainous climate of Zanjan province, it is cold in winter and pleasant in the Summer. Late March until late September is the best time to visit the Dome of Soltaniyeh.
Getting there?
The Dome of Soltaniyeh is located 36 kilometers east of Zanjan on Gonbad Street.