With more than five miles of corridors, this vast complex of museums chronicles the history and accomplishments of mankind over the last 2000 years, featuring classic masterpieces such as Rodin’s “Thinker” and the Sistine Chapel. Probably the most famous chapel in the world because of its incredible artwork, notably “The Last Judgment,” Michelangelo’s stunning fresco covering 10,000 square feet of the ceiling and wall. Arguably one of the finest Cathedrals in the entire world, St. Peter’s is the spiritual center of the Vatican and the product of many of Italy’s great Renaissance’s architects, among them Bramante, Raphael and Michelangelo. The Vatican Museums, founded by Pope Julius II in the 16th century, contain one of the largest art collections in the world. Inside there are huge collections of works of art accumulated over the centuries by the popes. The Sistine Chapel frescoed by Michelangelo is only a part of the works that visitors can admire. The Vatican Museums are located in the Vatican territory but the entrance is in Italian territory, in Rome. The Popes have not only been spiritual guides but also connoisseurs of art, and it was in the early 16th century that Pope Julius II decided to preserve this art. The Vatican Museums contain over 70,000 works of art, of which about 20,000 are on display at any given point of time. Over 6.5 million tourists visit the museums each year, making it one of the top visited art museums in the world. The Vatican Museums have 54 galleries which include the Vatican Historical Museum, the Sculpture Museums of Pio-Clementino, Chiaramonti, Gregoriano Etrusco, and Gregoriano Egiziano, as well as the collection of Modern Religious Art. The collection includes art and sculpture from across the Roman world and stunning Renaissance art, including the art created in the Museum buildings itself. A visit to the Vatican Museums will showcase the works of greats like Michelangelo, Leonardo Da Vinci, Caravaggio, and Rapahel all under one roof! The Museums have an average annual turnout of about six and a half million visitors.
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