Rome Sights

Scala Santa

  • Piazza di San Giovanni in Laterano Map It
  • San Giovanni
  • Religious Building/Site/Shrine

Published 06/07/2016

Fodor's Review

According to tradition, the Scala Santa was the staircase from Pilate's palace in Jerusalem—and, therefore, the one trod by Christ himself. St. Helena, Emperor Constantine's mother, brought the 28 marble steps to Rome in 326. As they have for centuries, pilgrims still come to climb the steps on their knees. At the top, they can get a glimpse of the Sancta Sanctorum (Holy of Holies), the richly decorated private papal chapel containing an image of Christ "not made by human hands." You can sneak a peek, too, by taking one of the (nonsanctified) staircases on either side. The splendid Sancta Sanctorum—the Pope's private chapel long before the Sistine Chapel—is itself visitable, and well worth the price of admission.

Sight Information


Piazza di San Giovanni in Laterano, Rome, Latium, 00184, Italy

Map It



Sight Details:

  • Scala Santa free, Sancta Sanctorum €3.50
  • Sancta Sanctorum closed Sun.

Published 06/07/2016


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