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Most Famous Landmarks In Vatican City

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Vatican City is a country with a rich history and culture, and a diverse natural beauty. It is home to some of the most iconic monuments and attractions in the world. Here are some of the most famous landmarks in Vatican City that you should not miss if you are planning to visit this amazing country.

  1. St. Peter’s Basilica (Basílica de San Pedro): The largest and most important church in Christendom, built over the tomb of Saint Peter, the first pope. It contains magnificent artworks by Michelangelo, Bernini, and others.
  2. Sistine Chapel (Capilla Sixtina): The chapel where the popes are elected, decorated with frescoes by Michelangelo, including the iconic ceiling and The Last Judgment.
  3. Vatican Museums (Museos Vaticanos): A complex of museums that display the vast collection of art and artifacts accumulated by the popes over centuries, including ancient sculptures, Renaissance paintings, and modern works.
  4. St. Peter’s Square (Plaza de San Pedro): The large plaza in front of St. Peter’s Basilica, designed by Bernini, where thousands of pilgrims gather to see the pope and attend mass.
  5. La Pieta (La Piedad): A marble sculpture by Michelangelo depicting the Virgin Mary holding the body of Jesus after the crucifixion, located inside St. Peter’s Basilica.
  6. Cupola di San Pietro (Cúpula de San Pedro): The dome of St. Peter’s Basilica, designed by Michelangelo and completed by Giacomo della Porta and Carlo Maderno. It offers a panoramic view of Rome and Vatican City from its top.
  7. Vatican City (Ciudad del Vaticano): The smallest sovereign state in the world, ruled by the pope as the head of the Catholic Church. It has its own flag, anthem, currency, postal service, and army.
  8. Baldacchino di San Pietro (Baldaquino de San Pedro): A bronze canopy over the main altar of St. Peter’s Basilica, created by Bernini to mark the spot where Saint Peter is buried.
  9. Castel Sant’Angelo (Castillo de Sant’Angelo): A fortress on the banks of the Tiber river, originally built as a mausoleum for Emperor Hadrian and later used as a papal residence and prison. It is connected to Vatican City by a secret passage called the Passetto di Borgo.
  10. Vatican Gardens (Jardines Vaticanos): A large area of greenery and fountains that covers about half of Vatican City, open to visitors by guided tours only.
  11. Apostolic Palace (Palacio Apostólico): The official residence of the pope and the seat of the Vatican administration, containing several chapels, halls, apartments, and offices.
  12. Swiss Guard (Guardia Suiza): The colorful and ceremonial military corps that protects the pope and Vatican City since 1506. They wear Renaissance-style uniforms and carry halberds and swords.
  13. Raphael Rooms (Estancias de Rafael): Four rooms in the Apostolic Palace that were decorated with frescoes by Raphael and his assistants, depicting scenes from the Bible and classical mythology.
  14. Vatican Necropolis (Necrópolis Vaticana): An underground cemetery beneath St. Peter’s Basilica, where many early Christians were buried, including Saint Peter himself.
  15. Vatican Library (Biblioteca Vaticana): One of the oldest and most prestigious libraries in the world, containing millions of books, manuscripts, and documents related to history, culture, religion, and science.
  16. Vatican Obelisk (Obelisco Vaticano): An ancient Egyptian obelisk that stands in the center of St. Peter’s Square, brought to Rome by Emperor Caligula in 37 AD and moved to its current location by Pope Sixtus V in 1586.
  17. Gallery of Maps (Galería de los Mapas): A long corridor in the Vatican Museums that displays 40 painted maps of Italy and its regions, commissioned by Pope Gregory XIII in 1580.
  18. Spiral Staircase (Escalera de Caracol): A modern spiral staircase designed by Giuseppe Momo in 1932, located at the exit of the Vatican Museums. It is composed of two intertwined helical ramps that create an optical illusion.
  19. Paul VI Audience Hall (Aula Pablo VI): A large auditorium built in 1971, where the pope holds his weekly general audiences and other events. It has a distinctive curved roof and a bronze sculpture of the Resurrection by Pericle Fazzini.
  20. Vatican Pinacoteca (Pinacoteca Vaticana): The art gallery of the Vatican Museums, containing paintings by famous artists such as Giotto, Fra Angelico, Leonardo da Vinci, Raphael, Caravaggio, and Titian.
  21. St. Peter’s Baldachin (Baldacchino de San Pedro): A bronze canopy over the main altar of St. Peter’s Basilica, created by Bernini to mark the spot where Saint Peter is buried.
  22. Scala Regia (Escalera Real): A grand staircase that leads from St. Peter’s Square to the Apostolic Palace, designed by Bernini in 1663. It is decorated with statues of Constantine and Charlemagne and a fresco of Alexander VII.
  23. Borgia Apartment (Apartamento Borgia): A suite of rooms in the Apostolic Palace that was used by Pope Alexander VI, a member of the notorious Borgia family. It is famous for its frescoes by Pinturicchio, depicting scenes from the life of Christ and the saints.
  24. Sala Regia (Sala Real): A large hall in the Apostolic Palace that was used for ceremonial and diplomatic purposes, such as coronations and receptions. It is adorned with frescoes by Vasari, Zuccari, and Salviati, depicting historical events involving the papacy.
  25. Sala Ducale (Sala Ducal): A pair of symmetrical halls in the Apostolic Palace that were used as antechambers to the papal apartments. They are decorated with frescoes by Lorenzo Sabbatini and Federico Zuccari, depicting scenes from the Old and New Testaments.
  26. Sala dei Chiaroscuri (Sala de los Claroscuros): A room in the Apostolic Palace that was used as a study by Pope Julius II. It is named after the chiaroscuro technique used by Raphael to paint four lunettes representing Theology, Philosophy, Poetry, and Justice.
  27. Chapel of the Sacrament (Capilla del Sacramento): A small chapel inside St. Peter’s Basilica that contains a tabernacle designed by Bernini, where the consecrated hosts are kept. It is also decorated with paintings by Pietro da Cortona and Carlo Maratta.
  28. Chapel of the Choir (Capilla del Coro): A chapel inside St. Peter’s Basilica that is used by the papal choir during liturgical celebrations. It contains an organ built by Luigi Valenti in 1954 and a painting of The Martyrdom of St. Sebastian by Domenichino.
  29. Gregorian Egyptian Museum (Museo Gregoriano Egizio): A museum in the Vatican Museums that displays a collection of ancient Egyptian artifacts, such as sarcophagi, mummies, statues, and papyri.
  30. Gregorian Etruscan Museum (Museo Gregoriano Etrusco): A museum in the Vatican Museums that displays a collection of ancient Etruscan artifacts, such as pottery, jewelry, bronze figures, and terracotta sarcophagi.
  31. Pio Clementino Museum (Museo Pio Clementino): A museum in the Vatican Museums that displays a collection of classical sculptures, such as the Laocoön Group, the Apollo Belvedere, and the Belvedere Torso.
  32. Chiaramonti Museum (Museo Chiaramonti): A museum in the Vatican Museums that displays a collection of Roman sculptures, arranged along a long corridor designed by Bramante.
  33. Braccio Nuovo (Brazo Nuevo): A wing of the Chiaramonti Museum that displays a collection of Roman sculptures, such as the Augustus of Prima Porta, the Doryphoros, and the River Nile.
  34. Lapidary Gallery (Galería Lapidaria): A gallery in the Chiaramonti Museum that displays a collection of Roman inscriptions, such as epitaphs, decrees, and dedications.
  35. Pio Christian Museum (Museo Pio Cristiano): Vatican Museums (Museos Vaticanos). A collection of ancient Christian art and inscriptions..

We hope this Vatican City Travel Guide has given you some useful information and inspiration for your trip planning. Don’t forget to follow us on social media and share the most famous attractions in Vatican City with your friends and family.

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