A pagoda is a tiered building that rises to a point. Most pagodas have some religious significance and are found in Asia.
One particular type of Buddhist or Taoist temple rises in the shape of a pyramid or a rounded pyramid — this is called a pagoda. The word may make you think of China or Japan, and in fact most pagodas are found in those two countries, as well as other parts of Asia, including Cambodia, Nepal, and India. Pagoda comes from the Portuguese pagode, although its origin is uncertain. One possible root is the Tamil word pagavadi, "house belonging to a deity."