The Sistine Chapel, Vatican City

4.5 out of 5 stars 52 Reviews

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  • Sistine Chapel from St Peter's dome
    Sistine Chapel from St Peter's dome
    by Tijavi
  • The Sistine Chapel
    by fabrice
  • The Sistine Chapel
    by nyonnetti
  • solopes's Profile Photo

    The Tapestry

    by solopes Updated Dec 26, 2013

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    Vatican
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    The Sistine Chapel is a carpet of heads, all with noses facing up. For two reasons it's a marvel of physics: First, you don't walk on the carpet, but inside it; second, the collection of hundred of silences becomes a sort of thunder sometimes called "a rumour". And don't worry about getting lost in the carpet, or finding a way out - the carpet works so perfectly that you will be expelled without noticing it.

    P.S. - I forgot to tell you that if you look up and around, you may see many paintings of some skilled guys, named Michelangelo, Botticelli, and other. They reproduce many known posters easy to buy in the market, but with that good technique, I think they will have a future.

    P.S.2 - I forgot to tell you how to go: early in the morning search for a huge line of people in (or near) a country called Vaticano. If you see a big church at the far end of the line, forget it. That's the wrong line. Move some meters to your right and enter the other line.

    P.S.3 - It's forbidden to make pictures, so I had to pick some among the millions available in the net. I hope that Human Heritage is beyond copyright laws.

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  • riorich55's Profile Photo

    Up Close and Personal at the Sistine Chapel

    by riorich55 Written Mar 26, 2013

    You can't take pictures in the Sistine Chapel, although some people do sneak them in. But this is a good way to have a look up close and personal.

    http://www.vatican.va/various/cappelle/sistina_vr/index.html

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  • Kuznetsov_Sergey's Profile Photo

    Sistine Chapel

    by Kuznetsov_Sergey Written Aug 2, 2012

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    Sistine Chapel
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    Sistine Chapel is the best-known chapel in the Apostolic Palace. It is famous for its architecture and its decoration that was frescoed throughout by Renaissance artists including Michelangelo, Sandro Botticelli, Pietro Perugino, Pinturicchio and others.
    Under the patronage of Pope Julius II, Michelangelo painted 1,100 m2 (12,000 sq ft) of the chapel ceiling between 1508 and 1512. The ceiling, and especially The Last Judgment (1535–1541), is widely believed to be Michelangelo's crowning achievement in painting.

    You can watch my 1 min 50 sec Video Rome Vatican Museums part 2 out of my Youtube channel or here on VT.

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  • Tijavi's Profile Photo

    A few rants on taking pictures

    by Tijavi Written Sep 10, 2010

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    The staircase to the Sistine Chapel
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    Perhaps more famous than the St Peter's Basilica itself, the Sistene Chapel is arguably the Vatican City's biggest single attraction. The chapel could be accessed through the labyrinthine Vatican Museums - serving as the highlight of the visit at the end of the tour. Some tourists skip the museum altogether - sacrilegious, if you ask me (and no pun intended) - and head directly to the chapel.

    All throughout the museum, the Vatican City authorities have an enlightened policy on taking pictures - tourists are allowed to take photos provided there is no flash. But this does not apply to the Sistene Chapel. Over a dozen, and perhaps even more, overzealous museum personnel make sure this policy is strictly followed, although not perfectly, with some occasional flashes escaping their watchful eyes.

    I don't see any reason why they can't allow flashless photography of the frescoes for tourists' memento? It's not that Michelangelo's masterpieces are top secret - one could easily find them in internet and in books! How could harmless tourist souvenirs spoil the frescoes?

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  • micas_pt's Profile Photo

    The Sistine Chapel

    by micas_pt Written May 11, 2010

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    I guess that in every visitor's mind is the Sistine Chapel. And we were no exception. :)

    So, we tryed to arrive there as soon as we could. I confess that I have mixed feelings about it.

    Whilst in all the Museum you may use your camera at ease, here you can't. The notice isn't clear, as I saw it as if I couldn't use the flash (which is the usual!). So I held my camera and immediately a guard told me not to do so. So, keep in mind that you can't shoot the chapel, but a lot of people around you will be doing it. Neverthless, I didn't delete the photo I had already shoot, so here it is. :)

    Also, as this is the main attraction of the Museum everybody concentrates here, making it a confusing, crowded and noisy room, not exactly what I had imagined, ... Along the visit, the guards remind people to keep quiet and to rush, as supposedly you can't stop for a long time, just walk by it.

    By now, everybody knows that it was painted by Michelangelo, that when the Pope dyes bishops gather inside to vote and elect a new Pope so I won't be further detailing it, as there are excellent VT tips with historic information.

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  • cinthya_in_victoria's Profile Photo

    The Sistine Chapel

    by cinthya_in_victoria Written Dec 29, 2008

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    This place is FULL of people; the reason?? Because another masterpiece by Michelangelo: The Last Judgement and the Creation of Adam. Unfortunatelly pictures are not allowed but if you are a skilled tourist, you can have a picture without being noticed! Good luck!

    PS: here you'll suffer of torticollis too so, prepare your neck!

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  • nyonnetti's Profile Photo

    Michaelangelo's masterpiece

    by nyonnetti Written Nov 22, 2008

    It was hard to believe when were there that we were actually looking at the amazing Sistine Chapel. It is a must-see sight and worth dedicating some of time to sit and just look at it a while.
    No photos allowed, but we did sneak one without flash.

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  • muratkorman's Profile Photo

    The best combination of art and religion

    by muratkorman Updated Oct 10, 2008

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    It took 4 years for Michelangelo to complete the ceiling of Sistine Chapel. The result is a masterpiece which awes everybody who has been there. It is one of the most popular part of Vatican and it is not easy to keep the visitors quiet. You will hear "Silenzio!!!" warnings from the attendants. Take your time and sit down on the floor watching the fantastic ceiling. Photography is forbidden, but use your chances if you can. You can view the short video I took inside Sistine Chapel.

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  • stevemt's Profile Photo

    Sistine Chapel

    by stevemt Written Sep 2, 2008

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    You are not allowed to take photos here, so that is why I dont have any with this tip.

    This place is un-real. To see all the beautiful art work restored. (there is a tiny insignificent section un restored so that you can see the difference.)

    DONT MISS THIS

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  • eksvist's Profile Photo

    Sistine Chapel

    by eksvist Written May 28, 2008
    the Last Judgement in Sistine Chapel (postcard)

    Sistine Chapel - Cappella Sistina is a chapel in the Apostolic Palace.
    Its fame rests on its architecture, which evokes Solomon's Temple of the Old Testament, its decoration, frescoed throughout by the greatest Renaissance artists, including Michelangelo whose ceiling is legendary, and its purpose, as a site of papal religious and functionary activity, notably the conclave, at which a new Pope is selected.

    One of the most significant functions of the Sistine Chapel is as a venue for the election of each successive pope in a conclave of the College of Cardinals.
    On the occasion of a conclave, a chimney is installed in the roof of the chapel, from which smoke arises as a signal. If white smoke appears, created by burning the ballots of the election and some chemical additives, a new Pope has been elected. If the cardinals send up black smoke, created by burning the ballots along with wet straw or other chemical additives, it means that no successful election has yet occurred.

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  • Zeldap99's Profile Photo

    sistine chapel

    by Zeldap99 Written Dec 28, 2007
    stunning isn't it?!?!
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    ok, now I missed my first flight home back to the US because I HAD to see the Sistine CHapel. it was the most beautiful sight i've ever seen. I like to paint myself, so this has always been my dream to come see Michelangelo's masterpiece. i couldn't even imagine painting a ceiling for years and years. my arm gets tired just painting a wall! beware pics are blurring since I was running through the building in hopes i would still make my flight...which i failed at!

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  • fishandchips's Profile Photo

    Sistine Chapel

    by fishandchips Updated Oct 1, 2007

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    Roof of the Sistine Chapel

    This has to be one your MUST SEE list when you come to Rome and the Vatican City. This would be one of most loved places and I entered the chapel feeling that the work was most likely over-rated until I got there. The ceiling is just amazing and when I found out a few facts about how it was done, even more amazing.

    In 1508 Michelangelo was commissioned by Pope Julius II to paint the ceiling of the chapel and it took him until 1512 to complete. He had to paint the roof as he plastered it with damp plaster so had to work quickly before it dried!! Unfortunately the plaster grew mold as the plaster was too wet so he had to start again!! Over the centuries the ceiling got a bit grubby due to candle smoke, soot, and applications of poor quality varnish. The cleaning of the ceiling took place in the early 1980's and revealed the stunning colours you see today.

    Photography is banned so my shot below is very low quality (flash off and taken from the hip). It is still a great reminder of the chapel (though I did buy a guide book with all of the paintings in it....).

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  • msbrandysue's Profile Photo

    Sistine Chapel

    by msbrandysue Updated Jul 3, 2007

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    YOU...HAVE...TO...SEE...THIS...

    WORDS...DO...NOT...DESCRIBE...

    You can NOT take pictures...don't even try. You must remain quiet as well. I will try to scan some pictures from a book I purchased from the Vatican Museum of my favorite pieces later on.

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  • kayleigh06's Profile Photo

    Sistine Chapel

    by kayleigh06 Updated Apr 19, 2007

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    The Sistine Chapel in Vatican City contains two of the world's most celebrated frescoes, "Genesis" and "The Last Judgment". The first is a set of Genesis-themed frescoes painted on the Sistine Chapel's high vaulted ceiling by the then young Michelangelo. He began the project in 1508 and finished four years later. His best known Genesis ceiling fresco depicts God creating Adam. Two decades later, Michelangelo painted "The Last Judgment" on the large wall behind the Sistine Chapel's altar. It took him six years (1535-1541) to complete it.

    No direct entrance for visitors, you have to walk though Vatican Museum which takes ages and its RAMMED!! Its worth the visit though. I thought that after a while that it began to look the same, don't get me wrong its amazng but maybe it was how claustraphobic the who place felt or how long we'd spent standing around waiting for queues to go down - inside! I wouldn't fancy going here in the summer - it would be far to hot and sticky. The only way a tourist can reach the Sistine Chapel is through the Vatican Museums

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  • Sunpoppi's Profile Photo

    Vitals for Visiting Vatican City

    by Sunpoppi Written Mar 2, 2007

    I have not found an easy way to get reservations for the Vatican/Sistine Chapel. In fact the Vatican states specifically that they will not confirm reservations earlier than the night before your requested visit.

    From the Vatican Web Site:
    "ATTENTION : Reserving tickets at the Vatican can be very tricky. The current policy implemented by the Vatican consists of providing only and exclusively last minute confirmation. This means that you will not receive any answer -- positive or negative, confirmed or not confirmed -- until the evening before your requested tour. Since we understand this will be a cause of anxiety, we want to adamantly state that it will not be possible to have an answer prior to 7 pm (Italian time) the day before your requested tour."

    Personally, your best bet is to arrive early at the Vatican and make the Cappella Sistina (Sistine Chapel), Vatican Museum (Museo Vaticano) your first stop. Visit St. Peters afterwards as there is usually little to no wait for entrance to the Basilica. There is a security check for both the museum and the Basilica, so be prepared.

    Remember that shorts are not permitted in the churches in Italy. Not even the ones to your knee. And, you must cover your bare arms. If you are going in the heat of summer and wearing a sleeveless top, take a scarf or wrap to cover your shoulders. Sometimes this is relaxed, but it's better to wear pants or a skirt and pack a scarf than to take a chance of not being admitted.

    Also, since the Vatican is a separate country you may want to mail postcards with the Vatican stamp and seal. Usually I write postcards the night before, while sipping caldo cioccolata (hot chocolate) in a café. Having these pre-addressed postcards ready to go makes it easier to drop them off at the post office the next day. TIP: The Vatican post office is just under the loggia as you enter/exit the Basilica San Pietro

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