I have had the good fortune of visiting some truly awe-inspiring places. I have seen old and ancient places like Stonehenge, Angkor Wat, and the Colosseum, famous sites like St. Paul’s Cathedral and the Eiffel Tower, but one special visit that will stay with me forever was my trip through the Vatican museums and the Sistine Chapel.
I traveled to Italy on a trip with Tauck Tours, and they do everything they can to create unique and incredibly memorable trips. It was one of the fanciest trips I have taken, and so it was strange for me at times, as someone who is used to packing light and carrying all of my things through hostels and looking for local restaurants that don’t price gouge for tourists too much. This trip though pulled out all of the stops, and it was a refreshing way to travel to Venice, Florence, and Rome over the course of a week and not have to worry about all of the usual stressors of travelling.
On one of our last evenings of our already amazing trip, we went to visit the vatican museums during an after-hours special tour. Only three groups, maybe 60 people in total walked through the museum with our guides, seeing artifacts and rooms that are usually crowded by hundreds of people. Then they brought us into the sistine chapel and let us stay in there for over half an hour, telling us stories about the history of the space, Michelangelo painting the facade, the controversies that arose from his paintings, and just let us take in this incredibly spiritual place in the most special way. Nothing will ever feel like that visit, that’s for certain.