Top 10 Places To Visit in Vatican City – Vatican City (Holy See) Tourist Attraction
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The Most Visited Places – Vatican City (Holy See), the top Places to Discover.
1. St. Peter’s Basilica
The centerpiece of the Vatican, the magnificent St. Peter’s Basilica was built between the 16th and 18th centuries, replacing earlier structures that began in 326 on what is thought to be where St. Peter was buried. Ironically, it was the selling of indulgences to finance this building in the 16th century that provoked Martin Luther to begin the Protestant Reformation.
2. Sistine Chapel
Built by Pope Sixtus IV in 1473-84, the Sistine Chapel is a rectangular hall that is the Pope’s domestic chapel, also used for services and special occasions. After the death of a Pope, the conclave to elect his successor is held here. The frescoes by Michelangelo and others covering the walls and ceiling, acknowledged as the pinnacle of Renaissance painting, were extensively restored from 1980 to 1994, removing layers of candle-soot, dust, varnish, grease, and overpainting to reveal their original luminous colors.
3. Pinacoteca (Picture Gallery)
Even though it was robbed of many of its treasures by Napoleon, the Pinacoteca contains 16 rooms of priceless art from the Middle Ages to contemporary works. Arranged in chronological order, the pictures give an excellent survey of the development of Western painting. Medieval art includes Byzantine, Sienese, Umbrian, and Tuscan paintings, as well as a Giotto triptych and a Madonna and St. Nicholas of Bari by Fra Angelico.
4. Raphael Rooms
These rooms, commissioned by the art-loving Pope Julius II and after him by Pope Leo X, are covered with a magnificent series of frescoes by Raphael. In re-discovering the traditions of historical painting, Raphael began an art tradition that was to be followed for centuries. In each of the scenes he uses a classical symmetry in the composition, positioning the characters in perspective around a central focal point.
5. Piazza San Pietro (St. Peter’s Square)
The grand Piazza San Pietro in front of St. Peter’s Basilica was laid out by Bernini between 1656 and 1667 to provide a setting where the faithful from all over the world could gather. It still serves that purpose admirably, and is filled to capacity each Easter Sunday and on other important occasions. The large oval area, 372 meters long, is enclosed at each end by semicircular colonnades surmounted by a balustrade with 140 statues of saints. On either side of the oval are fountains, and in the center is a 25.5-meter Egyptian obelisk brought from Heliopolis by Caligula in AD 39 and set up in his circus.
6. Museo Pio Clementino
The Vatican Museums have the largest collection of ancient sculpture in the world, mainly found in Rome and the surrounding areas, most of it displayed in the systematic arrangement designed by Popes Clement XIV and Pius VI from 1769 to 1799. These galleries contain such a wealth of magnificent and significant pieces that even a list of the highlights is a long one. In the Sala a Croce Greca don’t miss the red porphyry sarcophagi of Constantine’s daughter, Constantia, and his mother, St. Helen, both richly decorated with figures and symbols.
7. Appartamento Borgia
Pope Alexander VI, a Borgia, had a private residence for himself and his family built inside the Vatican Palace, and commissioned Pinturicchio to decorate its walls and ceilings. Between 1492 and 1495, the painter and his assistants painted a series of scenes that combined Christian subjects with ancient and Renaissance humanist themes.
8. Cappella Niccolina
It’s easy to miss this little gem as you leave the Raphael Rooms and go through the Sala dei Chiaroscuro, where your attention will be on the wooden ceiling. But in the corner is a small doorway to Nicholas V’s Chapel, completely lined in frescoes by the Florentine monk of the early Renaissance, Fra Beato Angelico.
9. Etruscan Museum
The Etruscan Museum, founded by Pope Gregory XVI in the mid-19th century, has 18 rooms of artifacts that shed new light on the life of the Etruscans and their idea of the afterlife. Among the findings from the Etruscan graves that have been excavated throughout Tuscany are not just funerary items, but art works and objects from the everyday life of these enigmatic people.
10. Vatican Library
The value of its contents makes the Vatican Library the richest in the world, with 7,000 incunabula (printed before 1501), 25,000 medieval hand-written books, and 80,000 manuscripts that have been collected since the library’s founding in 1450. And that’s just the old books; it doesn’t count all the books it contains that were printed since the end of the 15th century.
Very last sayings around the Most Visited Spots in Vatican City (Holy See).
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