Historical Vatican City and the Prati District
On your Rome Italy travel, visit one of Rome’s greatest landmarks, the oval St. Peters Square (Piazza San Pietro).
This majestic square is a masterpiece of perspective and illusion and appears to look circular.
St Peter’s Basilica
St. Peter’s Square
On your Rome Italy travel, plan to be at St. Peter’s Square early in the morning before the crowds fill the square.
St. Peters Square is surrounded by Berninis two semi-circular colonnades of quadruple rows of columns with an obelisk in the center of the square, framed by two fountains on each side.
Dark, round, marble slabs are set in the pavement between each fountain, and if you stand on one of these circles, the four rows of columns appear to perfectly align into a single row.
Perched high on top of the colonnades above St. Peter’s Square are 140 statues of saints.
A Grand Archway on the Left and Statues of Saints on Top of St Peter’s Basilica
There are tours to the top of St. Peter’s Basilica and you have the option of climbing the many stairs within the dome (a great workout), or you can take an elevator to the top of the basilica for a fee.
Once at the top, you will have a magnificent view of Vatican City, the Piazza San Pietro, and the stunning 140 statues of the saints on top of the colonnades. This is truly an amazing place to visit on your Rome Italy travel.
St. Peter’s Basilica
See the Glorious Dome of St Peter’s Basilica on Your Rome Travel
Bernini did a wonderful job of giving Michelangelos dome of St Peters a beautiful setting.
St. Peters Basilica itself rests over St. Peters tomb and is a most impressive structure with its overwhelming interior measuring 211 m (692 feet) long, 186 m (610 feet) wide at its widest point and 132 m (433 feet) high.
Visit Vatican City and Its Museums on Your Rome Italy Travel
Countless of treasures are held in the city of Rome and many are here in the Vatican City, which covers 108.5 acres within Rome on the western bank of the Tiber.
The Vatican runs a separate postal system and maintains an army of Swiss Guards wearing the colourful and flamboyant uniforms designed by Michelangelo.
The Vatican Museums contain one of the Worlds greatest collections of art, including Renaissance, ancient and modern statues, paintings and decorative arts that you must see on your Rome Italy travel.
To see everything on your Rome Vacations would take days, and if you are short of time, you have to plan ahead for your visit to the Vatican.
My Top Picks of the Vatican Museum for Your Rome Italy Travel:
Apartamenti Borgia (also known as Appartamento Borgia)
Chambers of the Borgia Pope Alexander VI (1492-1495) decorated with brilliant frescos by Pinturicchio.
Museo Pio Clementino
This exhibit contains the worlds greatest and largest masterpieces of sculptures from the ancient world with exquisite Greek and Roman originals.
Here you can see Cortile del Belvedere, the octagonal court which houses the Apollo Belvedere from the 4th century BC, the Laocoon from the 2nd century BC and the Belvedere Torso in the Hall of the Muses.
The Pinacoteca is an eclectic picture gallery housed in 18 rooms with works of art from the Middle Ages to the 19th century.
The gallery features art by Caravaggio, Fra Beato Angelico, Fra Filippo Lippi, Leonardo da Vinci, Perugino, Raphael, Titian and Veronese.
On your Rome Italy travel, make sure to see: Filippo Lippis Coronation of the Virgin Peruginos Madonna and Child, Titians Madonna of San Nicoletta dei Frari Raphaels Transfiguration.
Stanze di Rafaele and Loggia di Rafaele
The 4 rooms are the papal apartments (stanze) built for Pope Julius ll in the 1500s and highlight the best of Renaissance painting.
The 13 arcades of the Loggia were painted by Raphael with scenes from the Old Testament and one scene from the New Testament.
Sistine Chapel (Cappella Sistina)
The world famous Sistine Chapel, named for its founder, Pope Sixtus IV, houses Michelangelos stunning ceiling frescos and also the beautifully restored Last Judgement.
The ceiling is actually flat but appears vaulted.
The restoration of the Last Judgement reveals the true colours used by the Master and depicts the figure of Christ in the upper center, surrounded by the supplicant Mary and his saints.
Dont miss this amazing experience on your Rome Italy travel.
Click here for information on booking your Vatican Tours.
Explore the Sistine Chapel on Your Rome Italy Travels
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