After our disaster first time round, second was a charm. We pre booked the tickets online, this is essential if you don’t want to queue for hours in the baking sun. Along with the tickets we booked an audio tour rather than a guided one, if I’m honest those tour groups are just annoying, stopping everywhere and taking up loads of space.
The museums are quite simply stunning. It is quite overwhelming as its not only the paintings and sculptures but the buildings themselves that are ornate and beautiful. Everywhere you look from the ceiling to the floor has amazing detail. The highlight is certainly the famous Sistine Chapel, the detail is breathtaking. Just be careful not to fall foul of the dress code, no bare shoulders and no shorts. I had a little kimono in my bag. Also absolutely no photos.
I have say despite the beauty I found the Vatican a little disappointing. It is absolutely rammed with tourists, I know I am a tourist but at least I didn’t have a selfie stick, I mean really that is not appropriate. It really takes away any sense reverence and makes it just like any other tourist attraction. The Sistine Chapel in particular, it does not feel at all like a chapel. It is supposed to be silent but there is a constant din of chatter except for a half a second after the guards shout silence. It’s also just as packed, I thought they would restrict entry to only a small number at a time but this doesn’t appear to be the case.
Despite my disappointment it remains a must see when in Rome.