It was a long day, but one of my best. Everything I loved about Italy was waiting for me inside Vatican City. No trip to Rome is complete without a day spent here, whether you’re religious or not.
I started off at the incredible bridges, lined with emotive statues. Pass-up on the souvenir’s; you’ll find plenty inside!* A random day of the week, but plenty of people were there with a mutual plan for the day.
I joined the hour long queue into the Basilica. The inside was grand, with high ceilings, marble mosaic floors and beautifully golden decor. My favourite part of it was the statue of Mary with a dove in the centre. Before leaving, I sat in the prayer room to reflect on the amount of work that has gone into the church itself (and how its beauty conceals some ugly truths) and the fact that for some, simply being here was a very important religous plight.
I had booked my museum ticket for the afternoon, as advised- and I must say, I recommend you do the same. Don’t forget to bring a form of ID!* The museum itself is huge and requires quite a few hours to get through. Some skip through to get to the Sistine Chapel; don’t be one of those. I saw incredible art here: Greek, Roman, Egyptian. Works by Dali and Michelangelo, to name but only 2 of the thousands.
As amazing as it is, truth be told, patience is required. It’s busy! You feel as though all 25000 of the daily visitors are there with you at the same time, with many being more concerned with taking photos (and selfies, of course) with the art, rather than anything else. The Sistine chapel, was full of people and officials “shushing” everyone who kept their heads fixated on the work above them. Again, I was stunned by the amount of work that went into creating the sight before my eyes.
My trip to the Vatican ended off with a view of the sunset from a rooftop garden, displaying a 360 degree view to its customers. Here is where I had some of my best food too. As it so happens, the very best gelato in Italy (quote me on that), Hedera, is here. I literally had to go back. Not only was it the best thing I’ve ever tasted, it also happens to in the hands of the most genuinely friendly old man who uses fresh, seasonal produce. PS its also where the Pope gets his!
Most ironic moment? Passing a shop while walking towards the Basilica with one half of Rae Sremmurd singing about a girl ******-******.