Vatican City received was named after the name of the hill when it is located, Mons Vaticanus. The tiniest country in the world is the sovereign state and the most attractive tourist destination in Rome. Vatican City is located in the western part of the Eternal City. It is the official residence of the Pope. Nowadays, there are enclosed 44 hectares of land. Around 1000 citizens live and perform their religious duties there. These are mainly the nuns, Church Fathers, archivists, and superintendents of local infrastructure.
The successor of the Prince of Apostles
Vatican City gained its current political status in 1929 after the mutual agreement between Pope Pius XI and Benito Mussolini. Pope John XXIII convoked the Second Vatican Council to put to rights the inner system of the Catholic church. As a result, the long-awaited reformation began. In its course, the Pope stated that only the church doctrine was immutable. And the methods of getting its message to people must change from one generation to another. His successor, Pope Paul VI continued his ideas. He was traveling abroad and accepting leaders of communist parties in Vatican City.
However, despite the reforms, Pope Paul VI went down in history as a severe opponent of artificial birth control. In 1978, for the first time in the last 455 years, a non-Italian person became the Pope. It was a man from Poland named Karol Józef Wojtyła. Pope John Paul II was a conservative and didn’t approve of religious innovations.
The Mortal Like of Vatican City
According to the principles of extraterritoriality, institutions, and objects that are located out of Vatican City’s boundaries, but still, belong to the state. They include the Basilica di San Giovanni in Laterano, the Pope’s residence in Castel Gandolfo, Vatican Radio at Santa Maria di Galeria, and the objects that were proclaimed to be Italian attractions. Several educational establishments also have this status. These are the Pontifical Urban University, Pontifical Gregorian University, Angelicum Pontifical University of St. Thomas Aquinas, and others. Besides, Vatican City has land holdings not only in Italy but in Spain as well.
You shall find a diversity of monuments and attractions on its territory. All of them are of great art and historic value. Every year, the budget of the country is enriched at the expense of tourism, selling postage stamps, offertories from all over the world, and rent of land.
Information for tourists
Address: Città del Vaticano, 00120 Vatican City
How to get there:
- buses № 32, 81 or 982;
- from Roma Termini, take a train at Line A to Cipro-Musei Vaticani or Ottaviano-S. Pietro stations.
Another fascinating attraction in Rome is located not far from Vatican City. This is Castel Sant’Angelo that used to be a fortress, the Pope’s residence, a mausoleum, and even a prison. Nowadays, the castle is the National Museum.