Salt Lake City Temple Square Tour (Self Guided), Salt Lake City

Salt Lake City is famous for its ties to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church), also known as the Mormon Church. This tour around Temple Square will lead you to the Church's headquarters, the breathtaking Salt Lake City Temple and some beautiful, historic homes.
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Salt Lake City Temple Square Tour Map

Guide Name: Salt Lake City Temple Square Tour
Guide Location: USA » Salt Lake City (See other walking tours in Salt Lake City)
Guide Type: Self-guided Walking Tour (Sightseeing)
# of Attractions: 12
Tour Duration: 1 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 1.1 Km or 0.7 Miles
Author: tamara
Sight(s) Featured in This Guide:
  • Church Office Building
  • Conference Center
  • Salt Lake Temple
  • North Visitors Center
  • Church History Museum
  • Salt Lake Tabernacle
  • Assembly Hall
  • South Visitors Center
  • Joseph Smith Memorial Building
  • Lion House
  • Church Administration Building
  • Beehive House
Church Office Building

1) Church Office Building

The Church Office Building is a 28-story building, which houses the administrative support staff for the lay ministry of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints throughout the world. The building is 420 ft tall at roof level and is located within the Temple Square complex on the corner of North Temple and State Street. The building was designed by George Cannon Young at a cost of $31 million to build. Construction took place from 1962 to 1972. The lobby of the building is dominated by a massive mural of Jesus Christ commissioning the Apostles of the New Testament to preach the gospel message throughout the world. The lobby also features a statue honoring pioneer sacrifices, which depicts a husband and wife burying an infant child. Visitors can also take a free tour of the gardens surrounding the building. The gardens are completely redesigned every six months and feature an array of exotic plants and flowers.
Sight description based on wikipedia
Conference Center

2) Conference Center (must see)

The Conference Center is the premier meeting hall for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (the LDS Church, popularly known as the "Mormon Church"). Completed in the spring of 2000 in time for the church's April 2000 general conference, the 21,000-seat Conference Center replaced the nearby Salt Lake Tabernacle, built in 1868, as the site of the semiannual LDS Church general conferences and major church gatherings, devotionals, and other events. It is believed to be the largest theater-style auditorium ever built. The 1.4-million-square-foot (130,000 m2) Conference Center seats 21,200 people in its main auditorium. This includes the rostrum behind the pulpit facing the audience, which provides seating at general conference for 158 general authorities and general officers of the church and the 360-voice Mormon Tabernacle Choir. The auditorium is large enough to hold two Boeing 747s inside.
Sight description based on wikipedia
Salt Lake Temple

3) Salt Lake Temple (must see)

Salt Lake Temple is the largest and best-known temple of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Salt Lake Temple is the centerpiece of the 10-acre Temple Square in Salt Lake City. Although there are no public tours inside the temple (because it is considered sacred by the church and its members), the temple grounds are open to the public and are a popular tourist attraction. Due to its location at LDS Church headquarters and its historical significance, it is visited by Latter-day Saints from many parts of the world. The temple is intended to evoke the Temple of Solomon at Jerusalem. It is oriented towards Jerusalem, and the large basin used as a baptismal font is mounted on the backs of twelve oxen as was the brazen sea in Solomon's Temple. The temple site was dedicated on February 14, 1853. President Woodruff dedicated the temple on April 6, 1893, exactly forty years after the cornerstone was laid.
Sight description based on wikipedia
North Visitors Center

4) North Visitors Center

North Visitors Center is home to the popular statue of Jesus Christ, which stands 11 feet tall and sits on the top of the building. The statue is called "The Christus" and attracts more visitors than anything else in Temple Square. North Visitors Center also has a 14-square-foot image of Jerusalem in New Testament times. In the basement, you can hear messages from the leaders of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints on a variety of topics.
Church History Museum

5) Church History Museum (must see)

The Church History Museum is the premier museum operated by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Until November 2008, it was called the Museum of Church History and Art. The museum contains collections of art, artifacts, documents, photographs, tools, clothing and furniture from the almost two-century history of the LDS Church. The Church History Museum also initiated and hosts the International Art Competition, where LDS and affiliated artists worldwide submit works of art in assorted mediums around changing Church and gospel themes. Outside of the curators, administrative and other staff, tours of the museum's exhibits and many of the museum programs are conducted by a large volunteer workforce of Latter-day Saints.

The Museum Store was founded along with the museum to support the many exhibits and programs. Over 200 works of reproduced art have been made available to the general public from the Museum's and Church's extensive collections by prominent historical LDS artists such as Carl Christian Anton Christensen, John Hafen, Valoy Eaton, and Minerva Teichert,A major instigator of the creation of the church museum was Florence S. Jacobsen, a church curator and a former general president of the Young Women organization of the church. It was dedicated and opened on April 4, 1984.

Opening hours: Monday through Friday: 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.; Saturday: 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

"(The above description is based on Wikipedia under Creative Common License)"
Sight description based on wikipedia
Salt Lake Tabernacle

6) Salt Lake Tabernacle (must see)

The Tabernacle was built to house meetings for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and was the location of the semi-annual LDS General Conference for 132 years. However, because of the growth in the number of conference attendees, the LDS General Conference was moved to the new and larger LDS Conference Center in 2000. Now a historic building in Temple Square, the Salt Lake Tabernacle is still used for overflow crowds during General Conference.

The Tabernacle is the home of the world-renowned Mormon Tabernacle Choir, and was the previous home of the Utah Symphony Orchestra until the construction of Abravanel Hall. It is the historic broadcasting home for the radio and television program known as Music and the Spoken Word. In 2005, the Tabernacle was closed for 2 years of intensive renovations that greatly increased its ability to withstand earthquakes. It was reopened and rededicated during the Saturday afternoon session of the Church's General Conference on March 31, 2007 by Hinckley. The Museum of Church History and Art opened an extensive display on the Tabernacle as part of the rededication of the historic edifice.

The Salt Lake Tabernacle was inspired by an attempt to build a Canvas Tabernacle in Nauvoo, Illinois in the 1840s. This tabernacle was to be situated just to the West of the Nauvoo Temple and was to be oval shaped, much the same as the Salt Lake Tabernacle. However, the Nauvoo edifice was to have amphitheater style or terraced seating, and was to have canvas roofing.

"(The above description is based on Wikipedia under Creative Common License)"
Sight description based on wikipedia
Assembly Hall

7) Assembly Hall (must see)

Construction of the Assembly Hall began on August 11, 1877. Building began on the southwest corner of Temple Square on the site of what was called the "Old Tabernacle," razed earlier that year. The old structure, an adobe building determined by the Church to be inadequate, was built in 1852 and seated 2500. After the Tabernacle, the Assembly Hall was the second permanent structure completed on Temple Square. It has been modified several times since completion, however. A four foot flying-angel was removed. Additionally, the original ceiling murals depicting ancient and modern prophets in the LDS Church were painted over.

The most comprehensive renovations occurred from 1979 to 1983 to correct structural weaknesses in the building's tower and roof trusses. While rebuilding the tower, each of the Hall's 24 spires were replaced with fiberglass moldings.Additionally, all the softwood benches were refinished, and a new 3,489 pipe organ was installed. Acoustics in the building were enhanced by installing hundreds of small speakers.

Rough granite walls are laid out in cruciform style making the hall's exterior look like a small gothic cathedral. Twenty-four spires mark the perimeter of the building's footprint and a tower rises from the intersection of the floor plan's apparent crucifix. Although built of quartz monzonite rock as the Salt Lake City Temple, the Assembly Hall's unhewn exterior looks much different. The stones for the Assembly Hall were not cut as exactingly as the Temple's. This accounts for the building's dark, rough texture and the broader masonry joints between stones.

"(The above description is based on Wikipedia under Creative Common License)"
Sight description based on wikipedia
South Visitors Center

8) South Visitors Center

South Visitors Center presents exhibits on the history of the LDS church and the story of Brigham Young's arrival in Salt Lake Valley. It also features an exhibit on temple architecture. You can learn about the beliefs of the LDS church and the importance of family to members of the church at South Visitors Center.
Joseph Smith Memorial Building

9) Joseph Smith Memorial Building (must see)

The Joseph Smith Memorial Building is named in honor of Joseph Smith, Jr., the founder of the Latter-day Saints movement. Previously the Hotel Utah, it is now an administrative building. Prior to construction of Hotel Utah in 1911, the general tithing office of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, a bishop's storehouse, and the Deseret News printing plant all were located on the site. Work on the Second Renaissance Revival style hotel, designed by the Los Angeles architectural firm of Parkinson and Bergstrom, began in June 1909. Two years later, on June 9, 1911, Hotel Utah opened for business. While the LDS church was the primary stockholder, many Mormon and non-Mormon community and business leaders also purchased stock in the effort to provide the city with a first-class hotel. The ten-story building has a concrete and steel structure and is covered with white glazed terracotta and brick. The building ceased operations as a hotel in August 1987.
Sight description based on wikipedia
Lion House

10) Lion House (must see)

The Lion House was built in 1856 by Brigham Young to accommodate his family of approximately 27 women and 56 children. Truman O. Angell, Brigham Young's brother-in-law, who designed Salt Lake City Temple was also involved in the design of this home, which got its name from the statue of a lion over the front entrance. The house is situated at 63 East South Temple, near the corner of South Temple and State Street just one block east of Temple Square. It is adjacent to Young's other official residence, the Beehive House. Brigham Young died in the Lion House in 1877.
Sight description based on wikipedia
Church Administration Building

11) Church Administration Building

The Church Administration Building (CAB) is an administrative office building of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church), the fourth-largest Christian denomination in the United States. It differs from the Church Office Building in that it is much smaller and furnishes offices for the First Presidency and the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles. It also houses offices for other general authorities and their personal staff. Constructed in 1917, the building only permits entry to church officials and their guests. The CAB has been used for meetings between church leaders and several political and community leaders and has become a historic building for members of the LDS faith. Constructed between 1914 and 1917, the building is composed of quartz monzonite from the same quarry in Little Cottonwood Canyon as the stone used for the Utah State Capitol and the nearby Salt Lake Temple. Twenty-four Ionic columns form a colonnade around the structure, each weighing eight tons.
Sight description based on wikipedia
Beehive House

12) Beehive House (must see)

The Beehive House is one of two official residences of Brigham Young, an early leader of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (the Mormons). The Beehive House gets its name from the Beehive sculpture atop the house. It was designed by Young's brother-in-law and architect of the Salt Lake Temple, Truman O. Angell, who later designed Young's other residence, the Lion House. The Beehive house was constructed in 1854, two years before the Lion House. The Lion House is adjacent to the Beehive House, and both homes are one block east of the Salt Lake Temple and Temple Square. It is constructed of adobe and sandstone. Young was a polygamist, and the Beehive House was designed to accommodate him and his wives and children. Under church ownership, the Beehive House, at 67 E. South Temple, was restored in 1960. It is now a historic house museum with period furnishings depicting the Young family's life in the mid-1800s.
Sight description based on wikipedia

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