Vatican City

Vatican City, a city-state surrounded by Rome, Italy, is the headquarters of the Roman Catholic Church. It's home to the Pope and a trove of iconic art and architecture. Its Vatican Museums house ancient Roman sculptures such as the famed “Laocoön and His Sons” as well as Renaissance frescoes in the Raphael Rooms and the Sistine Chapel, famous for Michelangelo’s ceiling. Vatican City is the world's smallest independent state. The Vatican Palace is the residence of the Pope within the City walls. It has its own telephone system and post office.

🙂 Masterpieces

🙁 It can get very busy. Not much else to do in this country!

INTERESTING things many people do not know about the Vatican City:

  1. It’s the Smallest Country in the World. As of 2011, the population of the Vatican numbered just 594. This is by far the smallest nation in the world. It also attracts more tourists than anywhere else in the world with nearly 5 ½ million visitors each year. 
  2. There’s an ATM with instructions in Latin. Belonging to the Vatican bank, this has to be the only ATM with Latin instructions in the world. How many people have struggled to withdraw money from this ATM?  
  3. It drinks more wine than anywhere else in the world. An average Vatican resident consumes 54.26 litres of wine every year, giving this country the highest wine consumption rate per capita in the world.
  4. Women make up only 5.5% of the Vatican City’s population compared with 49.6% worldwide.
  5. There is no official language for the Vatican City.
  6. Nobody becomes a Vatican City by birth. You can only become a citizen if you become an employee and when you leave you lose your Citizenship.

28 September 2021

The Vatican City, one of the most sacred places in Christendom, attests to a great history and a formidable spiritual venture. A unique collection of artistic and architectural masterpieces lie within the boundaries of this small state. At its centre is St Peter’s Basilica, with its double colonnade and a circular piazza in front and bordered by palaces and gardens. The basilica, erected over the tomb of St Peter the Apostle, is the largest religious building in the world, the fruit of the combined genius of Bramante, Raphael, Michelangelo, Bernini and Maderno.

We loved our tour of the incredible Art and History contained within this small state. St Peter’s Basilica alone took over 120 years to build and is one of the largest churches in the world; the square, with its columns and pillars and ancient Egyptian obelisk, is a wonder to behold. The whole of the Vatican is an incredible feat of human achievement!

The Vatican isn’t just for those looking to honor their religious beliefs. It is also somewhat of a pilgrimage, in a sense, for art lovers and architecture fanatics alike. There is so much art to be seen throughout the Vatican City; tours will show you the best of the best including The Sistine Chapel (the frescoed ceiling by Michelangelo is probably one of the most famous artworks in the world), Caravaggio’s ‘The Entombment of Christ’, and Leonardo’s ‘St Jerome in the Wilderness’, which is unfinished. 

The Vatican museums are spread across 1400 rooms and contain artifacts and artwork from over 3000 years. Must-see parts of the Vatican museums include the Gallery of the Maps (the ceiling is heavily decorated, and there are 40 stunning maps lining the walls), all of the art from artists such as Giotto, Raphael and more, and the Gregorian Egyptian Museum which houses an incredible amount of antiquities.

Amazingly enough Sylvester Stallone is also immortalised on the walls of the Vatican! … and I always love a van Gough.

Go to: Italy

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