On the last day, we went ‘out’ of Rome to visit Vatican City. Not exactly out and away of course since the Vatican is situated within Rome itself. So here we’re in the world’s smallest independent state with a small population lead by the Pope. We alighted at Ottaviano Metro station and made our way towards the Vatican. Knowing that the queue into Vatican Museum is legendary, I bought the tickets online in advance. We collected our tickets at the booth after the security check. And the queue is much shorter compared to those who’re buying on the spot.
The Vatican Museum is HUGE!! I don’t know whether it’s humanly possible to see everything, the amount of stuff is simply too overwhelming. Right from the start, it was painting followed by more painting, a mecca for art connoisseurs. But for a commoner like me, I just browse through whichever that caught my eyes.
Same went for the sculptures that followed, the collections are equally enormous. I’m clueless about most of the sculptures but the explanations of those tour guides passed with their groups shed some light.
From then onwards, we’re walking around with our heads held high, literally, in order to admire the paintings on the ceiling.
The Sistine Chapel was next, quite possibly the most well-known place inside Vatican Museum. Never think that the chapel to be so small and it’s really crowded inside. During the election of a new Pope, cardinals from around the world will gather in this small chapel to cast their votes. I wonder how all the Cardinals fit inside…
Ok, I know I am not supposed to take the picture of the chapel but everyone was snapping away freely so I followed the crowd…until a guard shouted across. So I kept my camera and admired Michelangelo’s The Creation of Adam before making my way to Vatican’s famous spiral staircase exit.
St Peter’s Square
We made the short walk over to St. Peter’s Square after exiting the chapel. And here’s where St. Peter’s Basilica, the largest church in the world stand magnificently.
Unfortunately, the queue for entrance to the basilica was equally magnificent, which stretched around the square under the scorching afternoon’s sun. Gosh…so we decided not to wait and didn’t get to explore the church’s interior…sigh…but I ‘m sure I will be back in the near future (Which I did, 3 years later…yeah!)
The giant Obelisk brought here from Egypt…
Perhaps the massive crowds and afternoon sun had taken a toll on us, which see us heading back to Hotel Giorgi for a rest. We board the Leonardo Express train to Rome Fiumicino airport the next day to catch our flights back home. Looking back, our first Europe trip was indeed a memorable one which left me wanting to see more of other European countries.
Italy is one superb place to visit, its cities are beautiful and rich in history, the food and shopping are equally fantastic too. Till we meet again, Ciao Italy!! 😃