Day 62: Very Vet Vatican Vednesday

Having checked the weather before we left the UK, we knew that today would be rather a soggy morning, so it was no surprise to me when I was awoken by thunder at 7am. We’d already made plans to visit the Vatican Museum this morning, and left a deposit for another tour with Mark Anthony of Romaround Tours. Sadly, it was incredibly busy, so we weren’t able to make it into the audience chamber to see the Pope, but we did enjoy a spot of people-watching in St. Peter’s square, before heading round to the museum.

Nikon D300; Tamron 18-270mm @ 50mm; ISO 400; F/9; 1/250s. VC on.

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It’s definitely a must-see location. The colours of the paintings are as vibrant as any modern poster, which is amazing given the age of some of the pieces. I’m also glad that I can now say I’ve seen the Sistine Chapel, but would have to add that the crowds make it impossible to really take it in and enjoy it fully. It’s a great example of safety in numbers, as security just can’t handle the numbers of people snapping away. I’m probably the only person who walked in there that day with a camera and followed the instructions not to take photos.

However, I was very pleased with the security staff at the end of the day. Our tour guide led us out via St. Peter’s, which would have meant missing out on the wonderful double staircase, but I managed to persuade the staff to let me go up in the lift to go and see it (this is unusual – the lift is normally exit only as well).  It’s one of the staple tourist shots, and I’m not ashamed to take my own version.

 Nikon D300; Tamron 18-270mm @ 18mm; ISO 200; F/14; 0.6 seconds. VC on.

It did clear up going into the evening, so we headed over to Piazza Navona, where you can find the incredible Fountain of the Four Rivers by Bernini. It’s perpetually crowded (much like the Spanish Steps), but I was still able to get a shot I liked, with much arm waving and my trusty pair of black Lowe Alpine mittens. This allowed me to build up the light towards the top of the obelisk, without burning out the top of the building on the right.

Nikon D300; Tamron 18-270mm @ 18mm; ISO 200; F/8; 30 seconds. VC off.

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