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“Holy stairs?”

Scala Santa and Chapel of San Lorenzo
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Rome Walking Tour of Holy Sites: Basilica of the Holy Cross in Jerusalem, San...
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Christian Rome Afternoon Tour
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Passion of Christ Walking Tour
Ranked #66 of 1,536 things to do in Rome
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Owner description: For centuries, the Scala Santa has attracted Christian pilgrims and visitors who wished to honor the Passion of Christ. Tradition says that originally the Holy Stairs led to the praetorium, or judgment hall, of Pontius Pilate's palace in Jerusalem. Today, those same 28 white marble steps lead to the Sancta Sanctorum, or “Holiest of Holy Places”, the first private chapel of the Popes. Many have undergone the spiritual ritual of ascending the stairs on their knees.The Sanctuary of the Holy Stairs, one of the major projects by Pope Sixtus V, encompasses 1700 m of frescoes completed in 1590. These images tell the story of both the old and new testaments while including depictions of various saints, doctors of the church and the superb landscapes by Flemish master Paul Bril.
Manteca, California
Level 4 Contributor
15 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Holy stairs?”
Reviewed 6 August 2014

The stairs are located in a dark sanctuary---full of the devout on their knees---you can climb a side stairway to get to the top and an alternate view. Not much to see...not worth it.

Visited June 2014
1 Thank AudreyGaia
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Maringa, PR
Level 5 Contributor
69 reviews
56 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
“Divine Silence”
Reviewed 29 July 2014

To walk up on your knees is not a easy job but you hear a divine silence while others are praying in murmuring .....the offering is more than pain you feel. A great experience of christian faith !!!

Visited July 2014
1 Thank moiponcematamoros
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Missoula, Montana
Level 6 Contributor
286 reviews
69 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 71 helpful votes
“Go, even if you don't climb the staircase”
Reviewed 11 July 2014

I did not climb the stairs on my knees, but was in awe of the waves of people who faithfully were doing so--apparently there is a special series of prayers you can do as you ascend the ancient, sacred staircase. It is very moving to witness.

Visited April 2014
2 Thank BBMT
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Santa Clarita, California
Level 3 Contributor
24 reviews
12 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
“Do not miss this site”
Reviewed 2 July 2014

The Scala Santa is a holy place for Christian pilgrims but also a fascinating historical attraction. Legend says that St. Helena, Constantine's mother, brought the step back with her from Jerusalem. They were marble stairs from the palace of Pontius Pilate and were said to be the stairs that Jesus ascended in order to appear before Pilate. Only pilgrims are allowed to ascend the stairs now as one must crawl up on one's knees. There are 28 stairs and a separate prayer is offered on each stair. It's a quite moving experience to see. There are tourist stairs on each side which allow tourists to walk up to the top of the stairs to view the Sanctum Sanctorum, a private place where Popes have gone to pray. This is across the street from San Giovanni Laterano which is a spectacular Basillica and shouldn't be missed. A visit to La Scala Santa will take no more than 30 minutes and is, of course, free. The doors are closed so it looks locked up; luckily my 14 yr old grandson simply walked up and opened the doors. So don't be put off.

Visited June 2014
4 Thank Michelle H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Bangkok, Thailand
Level 6 Contributor
1,806 reviews
802 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 924 helpful votes
“Moving experience”
Reviewed 29 June 2014

Not a slave to guide books, I stumbled on the Scala Santa by random meandering after visiting San Giovanni in Laterano. I'm glad I did! Quite an amazing sight to see penitents solemnly (and sometime agonizingly) make their way up the 28 stairs on their knees. The marble stairs, reputedly to be the same the Christ climbed to appear before Pontius Pilate, are covered in wood, but the wood is incredibly worn from the millions of knees that have shuffled to the top. Although I was in a bit of a hurry, I found myself overcome with the urge to join others in struggling slowing on my knees up holy stairs. A moving experience. Not much else to see in the Chapel, but the experience was well worth the stop. I'm surprised the Scala Santa is not better known among Rome's tourist highlights.

Visited June 2014
4 Thank Raintree_Thailand
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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