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“Amazing experience”
Review of Vatican

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Vatican
Ranked #372 of 1,256 Hotels in Rome
Certificate of Excellence
Manchester, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
63 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 39 helpful votes
“Amazing experience”
Reviewed 6 May 2014

Visited in the days after the Cannnonisations and was a lovely experience. There are so many museums and things to see that it cant all be done in one day. We opted for the tours which included The Sistine Chapel, St. Peters Basillica, Raphaels Rooms, gallery of the geographical maps, Raphaels rooms and more. It was great to be guided through these galleries but DO make sure you get a properly working headset or it does spoil the tour. It gets VERY crowded and with visitors from all over the world (including several countries where aparently good manners are punnishable by death lol!) It can be quite frustrating so bring water to drink in hot weather and stay patient. DRESS CODE can also ruin the trip for some people so do make sure you have your knees and shoulders covered. Hair can be ledt uncovered though. BEING PREPARED is a huge help and I would recommend pre-booking your entrance ticket (including queue jump) as there are thousands of people queueing for upto 4/5 hours on a daily basis.

  • Stayed April 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank natalie c
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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English first
Williston, Vermont
Level Contributor
73 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 36 helpful votes
Reviewed 20 April 2014 via mobile

What an amazing site. The views are awesome. The history that surrounds this place is amazing. You will not be disappointed. We had a guide and were able to walk by a 2 block line and go right in. I recommend you buy tickets in advance and use a guild . Well worth it. Dress code no shorts and ladies need to cover shoulders.

Stayed April 2014, travelled with family
Helpful?
1 Thank primmer777
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Calgary, Canada
Level Contributor
12 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed 22 February 2014

Along with my family, I was very excited to witnessed the magnificent architectural structure of the Vatican. The St. Peters Square area was extremely crowded that day as it was a beautiful day and for some people, a vacationing time. Because of this, we waited in the large line up to enter the St. Peter's Basilica for hours until we finally reached the beginning of the line by the gates to have your bagged checked, enter the building, etc. It wasn't until we got the front of the line did we see a sign warning visitors of the PROPER dress code that must be followed before entering the building. The dress code stated that pants and skirts MUST cover past your knees, and shoulders also must be covered. On this hot day, I was wearing shorts that did not pass my knees, and for that reason, they stopped me from moving any further and threw me out of the line, allowing my family to go on without me.

This really ruined my day and I missed out on an amazing rare opportunity, all because I didn't think that there would be a strict dress code at this historical building. The warning of a dress code at the very beginning of the line seems to be a problem for quite a few, on the same day there was a little girl maybe 7 or 8 after us who was turned around with a skirt on.

Nonetheless, as astounding as the architect and design was, the heavy crowds and restricting dress code that as tourists, we were simple unaware of, really ruined the overall experience.

Stayed October 2013, travelled with family
Helpful?
4 Thank karenslalaland7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Mariemont, Ohio
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 17 February 2014

The Vatican is a magnificent palace located inside Vatican City. It looks stunning from the outside, but the spectacular sights are located inside the building. I took a tour inside the Vatican with my family. It was surprisingly uncrowded for such a historical point of interest. Before we entered the Vatican, we viewed the Cortile della Pigna (“Courtyard of the Cone”), a garden right outside the entrance. In the center of the garden stood a large, bronze pinecone. The tour guide explained that the pinecone represented eternal life in Vatican City.
Once I entered the Vatican, I was immediately overwhelmed by the paintings and sculptures that covered the walls and ceilings of each room. The detail and attractiveness of each painting made me fully grasp the extent of human achievement during the Renaissance era. Each painting drew me in, and the large number of paintings was almost overwhelming. The tour went through room after room connected by hallways. The hallways and rooms were covered with Renaissance paintings, sculptures, and tapestries. With each new room that we entered, I had to take a moment to absorb the works of art that covered every inch of space.
The tour guide gave information about the more important pieces of art in each room. He told us the names of the artists and the meaning behind the paintings. Many of the paintings had deep religious significance. One long hallway was covered on both sides with large Renaissance tapestries. They depicted different parts of Christ’s life. The detail and emotion in the pictures showed that many of the artists were motivated by religion.
The most memorable part of the tour was the Sistine Chapel. The Sistine Chapel is a large room connected to the Vatican. The walls and ceilings are painted entirely by Michelangelo. The nine scenes from the Book of Genesis are depicted on the ceiling. The guide informed us that Michelangelo painted the ceiling on his back on top of scaffolding. This information made me appreciate the work and effort put in to create the masterpiece that I was viewing. It made me realize that a lot of hard work and sacrifice must be done in order to create something magnificent.
The Last Judgment is located on the wall opposite of the entrance. This painting had the largest effect on me due to the religious significance and the meaning behind it. It depicts the Second Coming of Christ and the final and eternal judgment by God of all humanity. The well-known saints surround Christ as the human souls rise and descend to their fates. The tour guide explained to us the multiple meanings behind many different parts of the paintings. I was astounded by the amount of symbolism and themes found in the single work of art.
My trip to the Vatican was an overall great experience. I was able to appreciate the works of great Renaissance artists and the meaning behind them.

Stayed June 2013, travelled with family
Helpful?
1 Thank Wyatt P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hartland, Wisconsin
Level Contributor
35 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 70 helpful votes
Reviewed 12 January 2014

I'd agree with other reviewers that the crowds are chaotic. There's probably no way around that. This place is a historical monument that is still in use for one of the worlds largest religions, so be prepared to see a lot of people. Regardless of that, it's still worth seeing whether you're a Catholic or not. The art work on the walls and ceilings is amazing. The Sistine Chapel is amazing too, but I thought the artwork in other parts of the Vatical was more appealing. The Sistine Chapel brings historical significance with it, so it's a must see. My comment is just in relation to the ascetic elements of what I saw. Would recommend visiting.

Be cautious of the guide services. They lied to us twice. I'd recommend doing the self tour with headphones. They told us there'd only be 10-12 people on the tour. There were > 30. The told us we'd be able to skip the extremely long lines to enter. That day the lines were non-existent. The guide service isn't worth it.

Stayed August 2013, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
1 Thank DeltaWorld
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Flemington
Level Contributor
305 reviews
30 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 152 helpful votes
Reviewed 3 January 2014

This is really an amazing place. If you can arrive in time for a mass, make the effort to do so. The rest of my family climbed to the top of the dome and said the views were stunning. The size is awe-inspiring, as are the priceless works of art. Beware...there are crowds so don't let that detract from the beauty and spirituality of the place.

Stayed July 2013, travelled with family
Helpful?
Thank wahoowa1213
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ft Walton Beach, FL
Level Contributor
76 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 70 helpful votes
Reviewed 7 November 2013

We visited the Vatican museum as part of a Rick Steves tour group so fortunately we did not have to stand in line to get in. However, were not prepared for the huge crowds throughout the museum. It is massive (you won’t be able see everything in one visit) and the works of art are amazing, but the chaos inside really detracted from our visit. On a positive note you are allowed to take photographs without a flash in the museum itself. But, you are not allowed to speak or take photos/video in the Sistine Chapel.

The Sistine Chapel is magnificent (not as large as we expected) - but the peace and quiet you would like to have so it can be better appreciated is lacking. The crowd is literally shoulder to shoulder and movement is very difficult. The lack of serenity is also accentuated by the constant shouting from the guards telling everyone not to take photos and berating everyone to be quiet. Overall, it was a disappointing experience. We were more impressed with the Louvre in Paris.

Bottom line: we were glad we visited and the architecture and works of art are phenomenal but I doubt if we will return.

  • Stayed October 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank JKB1989
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Vatican

Property: Vatican
Address: Via Crescenzio 78, 193 Rome, Italy
Region: Italy > Lazio > Rome > Prati
Hotel Style:
Ranked #372 of 1,256 Hotels in Rome

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