The smallest country in the world is the state of Vatican City, a significant holy site to Christians and it covers just over 100 acres (About 0.44 kilometers). It is located in the heart of Rome and it is a total independent state which gained sovereignty in February, 1929 after signing a treaty with Italy.
Although Vatican City is located in Rome (within Italy), it has it own exclusive government and governing body, the country is completely ruled by monarchy and it has it own laws and guards. The Pope is the monarch head of Vatican City (meaning the Pope has complete power over the state) and the affairs of the country are controlled by a governing body called the Holy See.
The Country is one of the most visited tourist centers in the world and below are other amazing facts you probably don’t know about Vatican City.
– Vatican City has about 800 citizens.
All citizens of Vatican City are associated or working for the Catholic Church, although there are thousands of workers who work in the state’s museums and art centers, they are not citizens and most of them come from Italy.
– Vatican City has no hospital, so you can’t become a citizen by birth.
Cross-section of Vatican City showing it national flag.
It will interest you to know that, you cannot become a citizen of Vatican City by birth because there are no hospitals in Vatican City. In fact the citizenship of Vatican City are only given to people working for the Holy see (mostly celibate men), which means you can’t be a citizen of Vatican City if you don’t have an appointment with the governing body.
– Vatican City houses the biggest church in the world.
St Peter Basilica in Vatican City is the largest church in the world, it has a capacity of 60,000.
– The Basilica is constructed over the tomb of St Peter’s tomb (Peter, the disciple Jesus).
The Basilica church in Vatican City is said to be constructed over the tomb of Peter.
– Vatican City has it own guards and the Pope’s guard have to meet specific requirements.
The state has it own guards, namely, Swiss Guard, the Noble Guard, the Palatine Guard, and the Papal Gendarmerie Corps. The Swiss Guard is responsible for the Pope’s protection and members of the Swiss Guard are single males who are aleast 5 ft 8 and ½ inches tall, they must be Catholics and Swiss citizens with basic military training.
– Vatican museums has the largest art collections.
Sistine chapel in Vatican City.
The museums in Vatican City houses various ranges of art collections by great and historic artists, which is why thousands of tourists visit the museums daily.