St. Peter’s Square

St. Peter’s Square is a large and beautiful piazza in front of St. Peter’s Basilica in Vatican City, Rome. 

It was built to replicate the design of the Maderno fountain closely and is one of the world’s largest and most beautiful squares. 

The square is large, 320 meters(1049.8 feet) long and 240 meters(787.4 feet) wide. 

It’s surrounded by many beautiful things like tall columns, pretty statues, and other fancy structures that never seem to end.

The best way to experience the rich history is through a guided tour that takes you through all the details of the square. 

Entrance to St. Peter’s Square

The way into St. Peter’s Square is right by St. Peter’s Basilica in Vatican City, on the west side of the Borgo neighborhood. 

However, several entrances are available if you are looking for the entrance to St. Peter’s Basilica. 

One is a secret entrance through a small door on the right side of the Sistine Chapel.

What to expect at St. Peter’s Square Vatican

The square is named after Saint Peter, one of Jesus’ apostles and the first Catholic Pope. 

It was built at the site where St. Peter was killed, and Emperor Constantine originally built a church over the site of his grave. 

St. Peter’s Square is an important historical landmark and architectural marvel, with 284 columns and 88 pilasters that flank the square in an arcade of four rows. 

Above the columns, there are 140 statues of saints created in 1670 by the disciples of Bernini. 

St. Peter’s Square is oval, with two colonnades designed by the Italian architect Gian Lorenzo Bernini. 

The colonnades consist of four rows of Doric columns that embrace visitors as they enter the square. 

St. Peter’s Square is a popular gathering place for tourists and locals. 

It is often the site of significant events, such as papal audiences and public ceremonies. A lot of cultural events and concerts also take place at the square.

In addition to the Basilica and the colonnades, several other essential buildings surround St. Peter’s Square. 

These include the Apostolic Palace, the official residence of the Pope, and the Vatican Library, one of the world’s oldest and most significant libraries.

Best time of the day to visit The St. Peter’s Square

Here are some suggestions if you’re visiting the St. Peter’s Square and want to know the best time:

1. Early morning: St. Peter’s Square is the least crowded between 7 am and 9 am. This is a great time to visit because you can freely enjoy the beauty of the square without any hassle.

2. Late afternoon: If you want to visit in a more lively atmosphere, visit in the late afternoon between 4 pm and 6 pm. This is when the square starts to fill up with people, and you can enjoy the bustling energy of the area.

3. Evening: St. Peter’s Square is particularly beautiful in the evening when the setting sun lights the square. This can be a romantic and serene time to visit, especially if you want to capture some stunning photos.

A visit to St. Peter’s Square and Basilica go hand in hand, so make sure you check the St. Peter’s Basilica opening hours before your visit.

Obelisk of St. Peter’s Square

At the center of St. Peter’s Square is an obelisk. 

The obelisk was initially erected in the ancient city of Heliopolis and later moved to Alexandria. 

In 1586, Pope Sixtus V moved the obelisk to its current location in St. Peter’s Square. 

The obelisk is made of red granite and stands over 75 feet tall. 

It is decorated with inscriptions and hieroglyphics and topped with a cross.

The obelisk is the oldest in Rome and is considered one of the city’s most important landmarks. 

As per historical information, the obelisk’s installation in the square was as a gnomon or a device that tells time according to the sun’s position.

It was initially placed in the center of the square and later moved to its current location in the early 20th century.

This move made room for crowds gathered in the square during papal audiences and other events.

Experience the grand entrance of St. Peter’s Basilica with a detailed guided tour.

Featured Image: Massimo Merlini / Getty Images

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