Rome – Part 2 (Vatican City & other paid for attractions)

Having already discussed my favourite things to do around the city which don’t cost a thing here, I thought I’d compile a post about a few paid for experiences worth their while in Rome.

Upon reflection I have to say that in terms of entry fees you can actually get away with seeing a lot for free but there are some sites you just can’t leave without seeing inside.

The first is Vatican City.

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It’s fairly guaranteed that no matter when you visit there will be thousands of tourists right there with you also wanting to see the modern day home of Catholicism (and visit a new, if only tiny, country!)

A highlight is unsurprisingly, the Sistine Chapel painted by Michelangelo.

While it is truly magnificent, the atmosphere is ruined by people trying to take sneaky photos constantly despite this not being allowed, and then having guards constantly reprimanding them loudly, while you’re trying to enjoy the artwork – quite a shame.

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Otherwise, I just enjoyed walking around the buildings which have detailed doors, ceilings and are generally decorated beautifully.

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Getting to see the Pope mobiles through out time was pretty cool too and the other high point was St. Peter’s Basilica – its size was stunningly huge with marble everywhere and gold trimmings as far as the eye can see.

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We went on a guided tour organised through our Topdeck tour leader and the lady we had was wonderful, telling us the history of not only Vatican City but interesting facts about particular Popes and the Catholic faith too.

Next up is the Colosseum of course.

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Visiting Rome in the middle of summer means it’s virtually impossible to get a photo without multiple tourists in front of the infamous structure and like most things in the city, parts were under reconstruction.

I would strongly recommend doing a guided tour which runs every hour or so HOWEVER don’t be sucked in by the multitude of salesmen outside offering you ‘great deals.’

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Instead, we just walked right past them to line up inside, going one mid-afternoon in July, there was surprisingly not much wait and we paid less than the price being yelled to us from the guys outside.

Our guide was informative and the whole thing lasted around 45 minutes as our group toured the structure, hearing about its colourful past.

Your ticket should give you entry to Palentine Hill and the Roman Forum too.

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Il Convento dei Cappuccini di Via Veneto or the Museum and Crypt of the Capuchins is located right near the Piazza Barberini.

Sadly no photos were allowed so I have none to show!

Also beware that unless you have your knees and shoulders covered you will NOT be entering the building and the ladies at the front desk are rudely adamant about this.

As a general rule all churches in Italy are quite strict in this rule so bring a scarf and come prepared otherwise you’ll have to return another time like I did!

The crypt was really fascinating if a little creepy – I imagine the catacombs in Paris are like this site but on a larger scale since there are only a few rooms underneath the church which house the interesting works of bone art.

I didn’t even manage to make it to any museums in Rome but I imagine there  are quite a few quality ones to take in if you have the extra time – that’ll have to be for my next trip!


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