Thursday, January 08, 2009

Vatican City

Destination #7: Vatican City

Year of Visit: 2007

Vatican City is a sovereign city state located within the city of Rome, Italy.

It is also the smallest state in the world and home to the Papal seat.

I was there over the winter of 2007.

Located on the west of the Tiber river, it wasn't all that difficult to get there.

We traveled around Rome in the reliable public bus system so likewise we took a bus from Rome's Termini railway station to get to Vatican City. The Termini railway station is also the main terminal for buses and there is a tourist information centre at the bus hub with signs indicating which number to take to get to the various tourist spots.

How do you know where to get down?

Always have a map in hand, look out for road names or make sure you can recognise some important landmarks just in case none of them on the bus can speak English.

Tech savvy nun with one hand on the wheel and another holding on to her mobile phone.

This is the St. Peter's Square with dozens of taxis.

We only allocated one full day for Vatican City so we had to choose between the St. Peter's Basilica or the Vatican Museum. There was a long queue to enter St. Peter's Basilica and we wouldn't know how long it will take us to enter the so called 'greatest of all churches of Christendom' so we opted for the Vatican Museum which also has a reputation as one of the greatest museums in the world.

That Pope will normally appear from the balcony in the middle to address the people on Christmas day. There were preparations for the occasion when we were there but unfortunately our trip to Italy didn't coincide with Christmas day. Instead, we had such a bad Christmas in London which we will not forget. haha!

source: Wikipedia - The interior of the St. Peter's Basilica.

You must visit the St. Peter's Basilica if you have time!

The Swiss Guards whose history dates back to the 15th century.

They are well known for they loyalty and courage. They are responsible for the safety of the pope and the security of the various entrance and access to the Vatican City.

There are several criteria to fulfill to become a Swiss guard.

  • Catholic.
  • Single male.
  • Swiss citizen.
  • Completed basic training with Swiss military.
  • Between 19 and 30 years of age.
  • At least 174 cm tall.
Take a 10 minutes walk from St. Peter's Square and you will come to the entrance of the Vatican Museum or Musei Vaticani which houses century old collections. Mind you, on the last Sunday of each month, the Vatican Museum is open to the public for free. Avoid the last Sunday of each month unless you are prepared to wait in the queue for hours.

According to the museum, as of 2007, they were visited by 4,310,083 people.

My friends and I included.

The entrance exit.

The entrance looked a little more chaotic.

The Vatican Museum is definitely one of the best museums i have ever visited. It is huge and it will take you hours to explore and to appreciate the collections and various art works. A visit to the Vatican Museum includes the famous Sistine Chapel.

Collections from Egypt?

Among the architecture marvels in the museum.

Some historic carving.

The Gallery of Maps. It's not the 16th century map paintings on the walls which caught my attention but the paintings on the ceiling! haha!

So beautiful isn't it?

Looks like somebody from the Roman Empire era to me, but without pants?!

Some of the sculptures had their penis stolen or maybe dropped off over the years.

Another painting, i see Jesus, The Trinity, Virgin Mary and the Pope.

I can't remember if this painting was taken in the Sistine Chapel.

The staircase of the Vatican Museum. Even the staircase is itself an art!

The Courtyard.

Some of the Pope mobiles or transporters used by the Pope.

More information of the Vatican Museum here.

If you're a student, you will get a discount for your ticket.

Last but not least, a Christmas themed Coca-Cola can for Coca-Cola can and bottle collectors!


vincee87 on 8 January 2009 at 19:07 said...

Hi Jason. Came upon your blog from the LYN forums. Very nice photos and writeup here. I might be going to Rome this May for a vacation. You've given me an idea of what to expect! :D

jlshyang on 8 January 2009 at 21:13 said...

Hi there!

Thanks for dropping by and also the kind words ;) I should have a few more write ups on Rome and Italy proper before your vacation in May.

Do check back for updates alright? I hope my upcoming entries will be helpful.

Jolene on 9 January 2009 at 15:30 said...

hey, this place looks like very nice, you really went there before ar?

jlshyang on 9 January 2009 at 18:35 said...

yea, really beautiful especially the art works. hahahaha! you didn't see my big ugly face up there?

Josephine on 10 January 2009 at 14:00 said...

Hey, is that real Mummy?

jlshyang on 10 January 2009 at 21:24 said...

Josephine: Yes! It is. I have another close-up picture of it. Wanna see, wanna see? hehehe

kyh on 12 January 2009 at 09:11 said...

omg you're a LYN forummer too?

The works of Benini, Raphael, and Michelangelo. This place is sure a must visit for any sane traveller.

jlshyang on 12 January 2009 at 10:23 said...

kyh, an inactive one really. I think i have not posted more than 10 posts in the forum. lols.

yep, definitely a must!

so rich in art, culture and history.

Claudia on 12 January 2009 at 21:31 said...

hi Jason! yes I live in Florence, surely one of the most beautiful cities in the world!
i like you travel blog, you posted really nice pictures! what about a link exchange? let me know...
have a nice day!

jlshyang on 13 January 2009 at 23:37 said...


I agree with you. It's truly beautiful. No doubt about that.

Thanks! Sure, we can exchange links.

You have a nice day too!


Copyright 2008 All Rights Reserved Revolution Two Church theme by Brian Gardner Converted into Blogger Template by Bloganol dot com