The Vatican is a recognised independent state under the sovereignty of the Holy See, where the pope of the Catholic Church reins as absolute monarch. With a surface area of just 0.44 km2, it is the smallest state in the world with a population of 824 in 2008. However, despite its small size, this country has its own printing press, which publishes works in several languages, and even has its own daily and weekly newspapers. It also has its own stamps and prints its own currency, which can be used throughout Italy. The Vatican is a special place in the city, but in the world as well. Its location on the Tiber, the river that runs through Rome, makes it one of the most magical places to visit. St. Peter's Basilica and its wonderful palaces and gardens make it a truly exceptional place.
On the last Sunday of each month (except in June and July), the museums offer free admission from 9:00 am to 2:00 pm. (last entry at 12:30 pm) Our 4-star hotel in the heart of Rome is a 25-minute walk from the Vatican. The stroll is pleasant because you walk through the historic centre of Rome and cross the Vittorio Emanuele II bridge before continuing straight to the Vatican.