Vatican Museum, Rome
Rome, Italy June 2012
Overall Grade: A-

St Peter's Dome from Vatican Museum Angel Mural in Vatican Museum Egyptian Statues in Vatican Museum

The Vatican Museum Family Grades

Brian (Dad) - A+ "One of the greatest museums in the world. I really enjoyed visiting in the evening as it seemed more relaxed and slower paced. I especially like the Egyptian collection, which is not my usual taste, but the carvings were amazing."

Toni (Mom) - A "The Vatican Museum was beautiful. I enjoyed it because I was wheeled through it. If I had to walk through the whole entire thing it would have been ridiculous. It reminded me of the Louvre since it had a lot of ornate paintings and intricate carvings and statues. There were lots of broken things which was sad that they weren't take care of or became ruined. It was very vast, very large, lots of hallways. It was good to see things that you'd thing you'd only see on TV." Audio Clip

Sean (13 yrs) - C - "The Vatican Museum was interesting. I would give it a C because it wasn't that great or that terrible either. There's mostly older art in it, the Sistine Chapel was the one key piece in it." Audio Clip

Kyle (12 yrs) - C - "I give it a C because we had to carry Mom's wheelchair a lot. Even though there was a lot of cool stuff there we had to carry Mom's wheelchair. Which was heavy. " Audio Clip

Emi (8 yrs) - A+ - "First off, the art was amazzzzzzing. And the roofs, why would they put that much into just a ceiling! Okay, the Sixteen Chapel [sic] was amazing." Audio Clip

Why Go

It is one of the greatest museums of the world, nearly two thousand years of Roman Catholic wealth poured into one space. The architecture and decoration is as impressive as the artwork. Best of all, it is not oppressively religious. In fact, I'd guess there were fewer Madonnas and Christ than in the Ufizi museum.

As I sit here thinking back, the things which stand out in my mind are the statuary, the painted ceilings and the frescoes. Not the oil paintings. While impressive, the Sistine Chapel does not over shadow the rest of the museum. Most of the other art is on par with Michaelangelo's master piece. To put this in context let me compare this to the Ufizi, one of the other great museums of the world. I had walked half way through the Ufizi when I cam upon a painting which was clearly superior to the rest of the museum. I had very clean lines was bright, perfectly composed and had a modern style. I walked over to the painting to see the artist and it was Michaelangelo.

Getting There

Take the metro to the Ottaviano metro stop. Head southwest to the north section of the Vatican wall to reach the museum entrance (about 6 blocks). Map


The Vatican Museum is open on Friday nights during the summer. The entire museum is not open, but the most important sections are: Sistine Chapel, Raphael Rooms, the Egyptian collection, etc. It is beautiful in the glow of the summer sunset.

Keep your eyes opened for the locks on the vatican wall. I think these are placed here by lovers. Why Locks Video

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