Vatican City is among the most visited places in Europe, since it is here that the residence of the pope is located. Being the capital of Catholicism in Europe, the Holy City is also where the Apostolic Palace is situated.
Vatican City is located on a hill, in the west part of Rome and not far away from the Tiber River. It is like an enclave located in the heart of the Italian capital city, and it measures no more than 0.44 square kilometers. It is, undoubtedly, the smallest nation on the entire planet, and its borders are traced by the walls that surround the city and have done so for a long time. The pope is the only power recognized here, and he is the only ruler, representing the legislative, the executive and the judicial powers at the same time.
Because of his extended powers, the pope, which is also the bishop of Rome, is considered an absolute monarch and the only of such kind on the entire continent. The city population does not reach more than one thousand people, and they are mostly priests, nuns, guards and other dignitaries serving Vatican City.
As expected, Vatican City is renowned for its religious tourism. Once you set foot in the Holy City, you will be impressed with the incredible number of architectural wonders and the artistic legacy. Basilica di San Pietro in Vaticano is the most famous building in Vatican City, which is also considered to be the holiest site in all Christendom. The religious building is also the place where Saint Peter is buried.
Saint Peter was the most important of Jesus’ twelve apostles, and the first Bishop of Rome. The basilica was actually built on the tomb of Saint Peter. The building impresses through its architectural style as many important artists contributed to its beauty, the best known names belonging to Raphael, Maderna, Michelangelo and Bramante.
The basilica is placed on Saint Peter’s Piazza, which was erected by Bernini during the 17th century. The fountains were built by Bernini, as well, but Maderno also contributed to their making. In the center of the piazza you will see the obelisk that was brought here from Egypt in the year 37 AD.
While in Vatican City, you will also need to visit the museums. There are many museums here with very interesting exhibits. Sculptures, paintings and other works of art belonging to some very important artists like Leonardo da Vinci, Raphael, Titian, Fra Angelico and Nicolas Poussin are displayed here.
In order to get to Vatican City, you can take a cab, a bus or walk. Inside the Holy City, you will not need any other means of transportation other than your own feet, as the city itself is very little and there is no use for a vehicle while in here. Discover how the Vatican firefighters work
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The 37 men assure that rescues most often occur in the dome of St. Peter’s Basilica.
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