The Vatican announced it will open its famous Scala Sancta holy stairs to tourists for the first time in 300 years.
The stairs became inaccesible by pilgrims after 1723 restoration works had led to it being covered in boards of wood and.
The 28-step staircase is believed to have been transferred to Rome in the fourth century from the home of Pontius Pilate in Jerusalem where Jesus had walked on them before his judgment by the Roman ruler. The stairs are stained by Jesus’ drops of blood.
Visitors usually ascend the stairs on their knees and kiss the blood-stained spots that are pointed out now with medieval crosses.
The stairs will remain open to tourists until June 9.