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thefalcon Aug 29th, 2006 04:20 PM

Papal Audience plus what else on the same day?
I've read the threads on the Papal Audience, but I still have a question : from those of you who have recently attended the Wed. Papal Audience, what else might I schedule for that day? Three adults in our group, and we prefer to visit places at a leisurely pace, if this is possible in Rome. I assume we will have to schedule the Vatican Museums, Scavi, and etc on another day ?? We will be in Rome during the week of Oct 1st. Thank you

bookchick Aug 29th, 2006 05:28 PM

You can do either Scavi or the Vatican Museums on the same day, but realize you'll be doing them in the afternoon. Papal Audience will begin at 10:30, but you should be there when they begin to let folks in at 8:30. Papal Audience will go on until perhaps 12:30 or so. You should make an effort to get lunch at that time. If you're going at a time of year when outdoor audience is held, you should know that no one is permitted to enter St. Peter's Square after Papal Audience has begun, until after it has ended. Tour groups inside St. Peter's Basilica are not permitted to leave through the square during Papal Audience, either.

Buon Viaggio,

thefalcon Aug 29th, 2006 10:11 PM

Grazie, Bookchick

victoria_reynolds Aug 30th, 2006 06:09 AM

We found the Papal audience (am) and the Vatican Museums (pm) to be a good combination, especially this summer since the lines to enter the museum seemed to disappear after lunch. In the morning, they were very long. Also, if you have the stamina, there might be a late afternoon Mass at St. Peter's --you can end your tour there. Save the Pope's tombs for your Scavi tour day because it will release you in that area.

Just in case you haven't already heard this advice: for an outdoor audience, be sure and get there early and sit as close as possible to a "wide" aisle (center or side) because the Pope will ride down them in the Popemobile, giving you the best opportunity for photos. Having said that, the audience is primarily a religious service --not really a tourist event though you'd never know--Expect to hear pilgrims greeted and a gospel reading in several languages. At the end, the pope will lead the chanting of the Pater Noster --a beautiful manifestation of the universal Church.

You will need to be quick about lunch though...and a lot of the restaurants in that area are neither quick nor good. I can recommend L'Insalata RIcca (on the Piazza Risorgimento 4/5 near where the Vatican Museums line snakes around when it is really long). You will pass through this Piazza if you take the subway to Ottaviano for the audience. Coming from the Metro, Piazza Risorgimento 4/5 is on the far right; returning from St. Peter's, it would be on your left.

As to the Scavi tour, I assume you have requested the tour already for this October. (You won't be able to schedule a time for that anyway. The Ufficio Scavi will give you a time.) If you haven't already requested the tickets, it could be worth a try but I wouldn't count on them. There aren't too many tickets issued for the small tours each day.

missypie Aug 30th, 2006 07:36 AM

If I were you, I'd head far away after the audience - maybe take a cab to your Galleria Borghese reservation or something. After the audience, we grabbed a quick lunch and gelato and then went to Castel Sant Angelo - fine - no big crowds. Our plan was to then go back and climb the dome and do some shopping. The St. Peter's area was still absolutely packed! We ended up coming back the next day to climb the dome, because we didn't want to stand in such a long line. We ended up going back to our flat for a little rest, and then to Piazza Navonna.

Mimar Aug 30th, 2006 08:48 AM

How about the Vatican Gardens tour? There's a currently active thread about how to reserve.

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