Also called the Holy See, Vatican City is it’s own sovereign state, right in the middle of the Italian city of Rome. This is the seat of the Catholic religion, no mater what form of Catholicism you practice. silver icons It is less that half a square kilometer, and although it’s population is less that 1, 000 people, it gets almost 4 million visitors per year. Although it has been home to the Pope since 1378, it didn’t gain independence from Italy until February of 1929. St. Peter’s Basilica, where the Pope gives mass every Sunday, is in Vatican City
There is Sunday Mass in St. Peters Basilica, as well as the Square, which is located directly in front, and has a forty meter Egyptian obelisk at the center, which is capped by a cross. The Basilica is something to see, and covers the tomb of St. Peter. There are many famous works of art on display here, including Michelangelo’s Pieta, and you can also visit the world famous Sistine Chapel, another area of master pieces by him, including the Last Judgment, decorating the altar wall.
There are many different tours of Vatican City, and this is perhaps the first way to visit, because you will be able to skip the long lines and gain entrance to some of the places not open to the public, and one of the best times to visit by guided tour is on Wednesday morning, during audience with the Pope.. Once the tour is over, then you have the chance to explore the rest of the City, including the Vatican Museum. This is the largest in the world, and has over 1400 different rooms. Perhaps one of the best picture galleries in Rome is the Pinacoteca Vaticana, not only for it’s Renaissance works, but also because of the murals in the Hall of Maps.