While we were in the Vatican City, we spent a few hours exploring the infamous “Vatican Museums”. These museums are located within the city’s boundaries, and contain a massive collection of works built up by the Pope.
Included in these museums are some of the most renowned classical sculptures and most important masterpieces of Renaissance art in the world. The museums contain roughly 70,000 works, of which 20,000 are on display. Pope Julius II founded the museums in the early 16th century. The Sistine Chapel, with its ceiling decorated by Michelangelo and the Stanze di Raffaello decorated by Raphael, are on the visitor route through the Vatican Museums. There are 54 galleries in total, with the Sistine Chapel being the very last display within the Museum.
The Sistine Chapel was the MAIN reason that we came to the Vatican Museums, but, boy oh boy, it sure is a long tour through the rest of the museums before finally arriving at the grand finale! We signed up for a tour of the Vatican Museums, but in hindsight, we probably should have done the walk-through ourselves. We like to take things at our own pace – hurry when we aren’t interested, and slow down when we see something that we like. The ideal situation would have been: a quiet museum, lots of time, and the freedom to walk around aimlessly. The truth: the crowds were insane so we were probably better off with a guided group anyway!
Our tour guide was VERY ENTHUSIASTIC!
Nothing better than a person who is passionate about their work. We all had a portable speaker and headphones, so even while we were lagging towards the back of the group, we could hear here explanations and descriptions.
Eli, as perfectly-predictable as usual, fell asleep around nap-time. He was more than happy to take his snooze in the Ergo while we walked through the museums. Until the moment that he fell asleep, he was constantly looking around, and staring up at all of the decorative ceilings. It would have been nice if he could have walked around for a while, but there were just way too many people.
Interesting fact: It is said that the Vatican Museums contain the world’s largest collection of art with 9 miles of pieces, which could wrap four and half times around the Vatican walls. Needless to say, we saw a lot!! Excuse me for not going into any details on the particular artworks – I kind of want to, but I know that I might bore many of you.
Next Up: The grand finale of our Vatican Museum tour – The Sistine Chapel.