Italy Vacation {Part III}: Vatican City

I’m back to escape reality a little bit… and write about our third day in Italy! I know it’s overdue, but I thought it would be fun to break up the vacation and mentally relive Italy here and there as I finish up my recaps throughout the summer 🙂


On our third and final day in Rome, we had a tour scheduled for the Vatican Museum {including the Sistine Chapel and St. Peter’s Basilica}. Since we knew rain was in the forecast, we purposely chose an indoor attraction for this day. Weather App for the win!




Before we get too far into the photos, I want to apologize for their quality {or lack thereof}. Everyone was squished like sardines once inside and herded along. It was impossible to stop and take quality pictures, let alone admire the famous artwork.

Unlike our Colosseum tour the previous day, the Vatican tour was in a large group of about 30 people. Each person had a portable headset to hear our guide speak. In theory, this is fantastic! As it turns out, the headsets would cut out periodically and it was so crowded that the tour guide would be so far ahead of us that we couldn’t ever see what she was talking about. Mostly, we worked our way through, stealing glances at the incredible Renaissance era art along the way.

*We were only permitted to take pictures in certain areas of the museum. You will notice that there are not any of the famous Sistine Chapel, as pictures are not allowed there.

Ready to enter one of the museums

Ready to enter one of the museums

Resurrection of Christ Tapestry

Resurrection of Christ Tapestry {School of Raphael}

Vatican museum


Vatican ceiling


Vatican outside pillar


Our tour guide took us outside to the back courtyard before entering the Sistine Chapel. There were a dozen or so stations set up with pictures of what we were about to see, allowing guides to describe the ceiling before we went in. {No talking inside the chapel} I definitely appreciated her going over the main points of interest, so I was able to look for them!

Vatican Museum yard

After the Sistine Chapel, the tour guide released us and we were able to tour St. Peter’s Basilica at our own leisure. I have one word to describe it: WOW. It it truly a feat of architecture and art and possibly the most beautiful building I have ever had the privilege of seeing. My pictures do not do it justice!

St. Peter's Basilica

Inside St. Peter's Basilica

Inside St. Peter’s Basilica



Kristi Paul Vatican


The chairs above were set up because the Pope does his blessing every Wednesday. We visited on a Tuesday, as they were setting up for the blessing.

Swiss Guard outside St. Peter's Basilica

Swiss Guard outside St. Peter’s Basilica

The rest of the day, we roamed around {no pun intended!}.

I forgot to mention that amidst the tour of the Vatican Museum, a pick-pocketer targeted me. Let’s just say it ended in me staring him down square in the eye and he slithered onto his next victim. I’m fortunate that I was hyper-aware of my surroundings!

rome sunset

We saw a beautiful sunset walking home that evening! Can’t get much more picturesque that this!

That wraps up Rome! I’ll pop back in to share my favorite Italian city that we visited: VENICE!


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