A Tourist in Rome - Sistine Chapel
|41.90301, 12.45441 At the end of the Vatican Museum tour. As far as I know, gaining admission into the Vatican Museum is the only way to see the Sistine Chapel.
|Cipro Musei Vaticano
|about 30 - 60 minutes
|The entrance fee to the Vatican Museum
|The hours of the Vatican Museum
I'm not going to attempt to explain the Sistine Chapel better than the Wikipedia articles about the ceiling and about it's history, but I can give you these clues to orient yourself to what you're seeing. First, running down the spine of the ceiling (1st photo below) are 9 rectangular scenes from the old testament. Starting at the front of the chapel (the right side of the 1st photo below), the 9 rectangular panels show
At the end with the altar is the huge painting of The Last Judgment (center of 1st photo below), painted 23 years after the ceiling, which shows how the righteous (on the left) are carried up to heaven and the wicked (on the right) are pushed down for their punishment. If a long study of this grim wall with no one smiling can't make you straighten up and fly right, you might want to give up trying. Is that Charon the ferryman at the bottom, just right of center, wacking people with his oar? And Jesus, at the center near the top, with Mary under his raised right arm, is he a completion of the Belvedere Torso?