Vatican and the Holy See is one of the six micro states of Europe. It was established because Mosulini wanted to separate religion from state and today it is one of the smallest, holiest and wealthiest countries in the world.
The Vatican has a special place in Catholic belief and the holiest person in Christian belief system lives here. Of course I am talking about the pope who’s office and residence is inside the Vatican.
Vatican is so small it lies almost entirely inside the city of Rome and while Rome used to be the seat of Pope almost entirely throughout the history of Christianity and it’s take over of Roman Empire, the gap is widening every day where Vatican sticks to tradition and history and Romans are trying to move forward..
There are two distinct categories of majority of people who come to Vatican; religious enthusiasts and tourists looking to explore the history and the wonders of this wealthy and yet very holy state.
The Racism Factor
With a population of 842 people in all and that too almost entirely made of priest folk, racism isn’t really an option for men of God. In these tough times when religion is threatened by media and a keen eye magnifying every small scandal, every one is treated equally. In a strict traditional sense this isn’t a country so the normal rules don’t really apply here.
The Gay Factor
I almost laughed when I started writing this part and I’m still smirking. I don’t really need to explain the position of Christian church on homosexuality but like I said as long as you’re respectful, you will be treated nicely but no chance of PDA. I think things have also changed dramatically since Pope Francis took over. He’s quite a rockstar with his moderate views but don’t expect any welcome treatment if you come wearing a rainbow flag.
Value for Money
Vatican isn’t really a place where you can spend a lot of money other than donating to the church, entrance tickets, a little food which is quite expensive for cafeteria food and what you can spend on the souvenirs shops..
Vatican is a one day affair unless you have special access to more areas and most of the area is done with a guide ideally.
Nope, you have to stay outside the walls in Tome with rest of commoners 😉
The food outside the entrance is very touristy and they charge prices accordingly. I didn’t see much food options inside but the canteen type places are equally expensive because they are for tourists.
Phone & Internet
The phone reception is flakey like Tome in general and I don’t think God promised free wifi throughout his house so church is offering it at all but there are no special carriers for internet and phone for Vatican.
Cash & Cards
Cash and cards both are accepted here both for tickets and purchases but donations are cash only mostly 😉
- Book your tour and buy your tickets as early as possible and I really mean it. As the time gets near you have fewer or no options and you might have to queue outside for hours.
- Arrive early for your visit because you will go trough proper security scan.
- Don’t bring massive bags or trolleys with you, it will just delay your visit.
- Despite your issues with religions, Christianity or organised religion, you are a visitor, respect everyone and everything.
- Make sure you’re dressed appropriately or you won’t get entry at all. For girls and guys you need to cover you shoulders and legs and it must be considered ‘decent’.
- You will find Vatican to be a much better place with the guide but you should book a registered guide from Vatican they are much cheaper. Link is inside the main Vatican page.