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Early Access Vatican Museums Semi-Private Tour with Sistine Chapel & St. Peter’s

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Roma, Italy
Early Access Vatican Museums Semi-Private Tour with Sistine Chapel & St. Peter’s

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Free cancellation
Up to 24 hours in advance. Learn more
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Safety measures
icon3 hours  (Approx.)
Mobile ticket
iconOffered in: English

Overview

Tens of thousands of people visit the Vatican Museums each day to see St. Peter’s Basilica, masterpieces by the likes of Michelangelo and Raphael, and the Sistine Chapel. Get inside the UNESCO-listed complex before it opens to the general public on this early access tour that’s limited to just 12 participants. Enter through a reserved doorway to skip the lines, and stay a step ahead of the large crowds on this carefully planned route that ensures you make the most of your time.
  • Visit the Vatican Museums before it opens to the general public
  • Enter through a groups-only doorway to skip the long lines
  • Get context to the Sistine Chapel, Raphael Rooms, and masterpieces by the likes of Michelangelo
  • This tour is limited to 12 participants ensuring you can always see and hear the guide

Why Travelers Choose This Tour

Be among the first people of the day in all the Vatican on this small-group tour.
Saved to wishlist!
Reserved Skip-the-Line Access to the Vatican Museums
Reserved Access to the Sistine Chapel
Semi-private groups of no larger than 10 people
English-speaking art historian guide
Gratuities
Hotel pickup and drop-off
St. Peter's Basilica is not accessible due to current regulations

Departure Point

Via Tunisi, 4, 00192 Roma RM, Italy

At the bottom of the steps across the street from the Entrance of the Vatican Museums. The steps are located right next to Caffè Vaticano on the corner of Viale Vaticano and Via Tunisi. The closest Metro stop is Line A (Ottaviano – Musei Vaticani). Arriving from Ottaviano - Musei Vaticani Metro A Station: Exit the turnstiles – walk straight to the back end of the station and go to the left side exit. Once you’ve reached the left side exit – exit at V.le Giulio Cesare (to your right). Exit Station and walk down V.le G. Cesare to street light, cross the street and take left on Via Leone IV. Take right on Via Sebastiano Veniero and go 1 ½ blocks.

Return Details

Piazza San Pietro, 00120 Città del Vaticano, Vatican City
Meet and greet your guide opposite the entrance to the Vatican Museums, a collection of galleries filled with classical and Renaissance masterpieces, including the Sistine Chapel frescoes. Walk inside through a reserved door without any waiting. This access is even faster than the priority lines.

Once inside, there are more than 2,000 rooms and nine miles of art, so follow along with your guide who points out the highlights and explains the story behind each piece. The small-group nature of your tour allows you to remain close to your guide at all times, but a headset is included to make sure you can always hear the commentary clearly.

Stroll through rooms like the Gallery of Maps, with its golden, vaulted ceiling; the Raphael Rooms, painted by Renaissance artist Raphael; and the stunning Sistine Chapel, considered to be the Pope’s home chapel, with Michelangelo’s 'Creation of Adam' and
'The Last Judgement.' On your early-access tour, you find the galleries to be considerably quieter than they would be later in the day.

Finish with a visit to St. Peter’s Basilica, the largest church ever built and one of the holiest and most important sites in Christendom. Get an overview of its long history from your guide, and get an up-close look at 'La Pietà,' one of Michelangelo’s earlier sculptures that depicts the body of Jesus on the lap of his mother Mary after the Crucifixion.

Your tour ends inside the basilica. After you’ve finished exploring with your group, you can stay as long as you want on your own. It’s the perfect time to head down into the crypts or climb up to the top of St. Peter’s dome (own expense) for uninterrupted views of Rome.
Itinerary
Stop At:  
Vatican City
Get inside the UNESCO-listed complex of the Vatican Museums & Sistine Chapel before the crowds on this early-access small-group tour that’s limited to just 12 participants.
Duration: 3 hours 
Admission Ticket Free
Stop At:  
Vatican Museums
Stroll through rooms like the Gallery of Maps, with its golden, vaulted ceiling; the Raphael Rooms, painted by Renaissance artist Raphael; and the stunning Sistine Chapel, considered to be the Pope’s home chapel, with Michelangelo’s Creation of Adam and The Last Judgement. On your early-access tour, you’ll find the galleries to be considerably quieter than they would be later in the day.
Duration: 2 hours 
Admission Ticket Included
Stop At:  
Sistine Chapel
Meet and greet your guide opposite the entrance to the Vatican Museums, a collection of galleries filled with classical and Renaissance masterpieces, including the Sistine Chapel frescoes. Walk inside through a reserved door without any waiting. This access is even faster than the priority lines. Once inside, there are more than 2,000 rooms and nine miles of art, so follow along with your guide who will point out the highlights and explain the story behind each piece. The small-group nature of your tour allows you to remain close to your guide at all times, but a headset is included to make sure you can always hear the commentary clearly.
Duration: 30 minutes
Admission Ticket Included
Stop At:  
St. Peter's Basilica
Finish with a visit to St. Peter’s Basilica, the largest church ever built and one of the holiest and most important sites in Christendom. Get an overview of its long history from your guide, and get an up-close look at the Pietà, one of Michelangelo’s earlier sculptures that depicts the body of Jesus on the lap of his mother Mary after the Crucifixion. Your tour ends inside the basilica. After you’ve finished exploring with your group, you can stay as long as you want on your own. It’s the perfect time to head down into the crypts or climb up to the top of St. Peter’s dome (own expense) for uninterrupted views of Rome.
Duration: 1 hour 
Admission Ticket Free
  • Confirmation will be received at time of booking
  • Please bring your own mask on the tour. The wearing of mask is compulsory in order to comply with health & Safety regulations. Our guide will be wearing mask during the tour as well.
  • At the meeting point there will be social distancing taking place. Our guide will organize the group upon your arrival, but we kindly ask yourself to be conscience in taking social distance at all the time from others.
  • Not wheelchair accessible
  • Near public transportation
  • No heart problems or other serious medical conditions
  • Please note that access to St. Peter's Basilica is not included until October due to new regulations in the venue.
  • Knees and shoulders MUST be covered for both men and women to enter to the venues
  • Only small bags are allowed in the venue
  • Travelers should have a moderate physical fitness level
  • This tour/activity will have a maximum of 10 travelers
  • OPERATED BY City Wonders Ltd

For a full refund, cancel at least 24 hours in advance of the start date of the experience.

  • This experience requires good weather. If it’s canceled due to poor weather, you’ll be offered a different date or a full refund.

  • This experience requires a minimum number of travelers. If it’s canceled because the minimum isn’t met, you’ll be offered a different date/experience or a full refund.

Learn more about cancellations.

The answers provided below are based on answers previously given by the tour provider to customers’ questions.
Q:
What is the policy on face masks and attendee health during Early Access Vatican Museums Semi-Private Tour with Sistine Chapel & St. Peter’s?
A:The policies on face masks and attendee health are:

  • Face masks required for travelers in public areas
  • Face masks required for guides in public areas
  • Temperature checks for travelers upon arrival
See all safety measures taken by Early Access Vatican Museums Semi-Private Tour with Sistine Chapel & St. Peter’s.
Q:
What is the social distancing policy during Early Access Vatican Museums Semi-Private Tour with Sistine Chapel & St. Peter’s?
A:The policy on social distancing is:

  • Social distancing enforced throughout experience
See all safety measures taken by Early Access Vatican Museums Semi-Private Tour with Sistine Chapel & St. Peter’s.
Q:
What is the maximum group size during Early Access Vatican Museums Semi-Private Tour with Sistine Chapel & St. Peter’s?
A:This activity will have a maximum of 10 travelers.

See all safety measures taken by Early Access Vatican Museums Semi-Private Tour with Sistine Chapel & St. Peter’s.

Traveler Photos

Traveler Tips


  • "Getting into the grounds early is also key as it still fills up and gets crowded really fast." See review
  • "Starts early but still doesn't avoid a lot of crowds." See review

Reviews

4.5
star-4.5
2,582 Reviews

Reviews by Viator travelers

Showing 1-10 of 2,582 reviews
star-5
Great!
Natalie_M
, Sep 2021
Marco was great! He was very knowledgeable and funny which made the tour one of the best we took! Don’t hesitate between all the options, book this!
star-5
Wonderful
SuzanneTyrpak
, Sep 2021
Patrick is extremely knowledgeable and passionate about the Vatican museums and the amazing art they contain
1 traveler found this review helpful
star-4
Excellent way to experience the Vatican for the first time!
Chris_H
, Sep 2021
Absolutely the best way to experience the Vatican for the first time. There is so much to take in that having someone knowledgeable to guide you through helps. Could have easily spent an entire day in the museum alone, and at least half a day in St. Peters. Well worth booking the tour!! Ask for Laura.
star-5
Very knowledgeable and passionate guide
Harrison_W
, Sep 2021
Mickey was great as the tour leader, really knew his stuff. The tour time got adjusted the day before, but communication was clear and overall a good experience.
1 traveler found this review helpful
star-5
Perfect, informative and most enjoyable.
Barbara_K
, Sep 2021
Our guide was outstanding. We loved the Sistine Chapel, getting into the Vatican and the tour walking through all the art to the Sistine. Well done!!!
star-5
Vatican tour
David_J
, Sep 2021
Our guide Lindy was outstanding and she did a great job explaining the history and the art. Highly recommend this tour.
1 traveler found this review helpful
star-5
Vatican tour
tomtess1
, Sep 2021
What an amazing experience. Recommend it to everyone. Our guide was so knowledgeable in all topics of the history of the arts. She answered all questions. She was friendly & very approachable.
star-5
Gigi was the best!!
Travis_L
, Sep 2021
Gigi, our tour guide, made our experience so special. He was so inviting, engaging and personable with all of us. I just wish he could have been our tour guide for all of our other tours.
star-5
Highly recommend Christian
Daniel
, Sep 2021
Christian was awesome! He just had such a passion and dedication for his work. Worth every penny and minute we spend with him in the Vatican.
star-5
Great tour and guide.
Jeanette_R
, Aug 2021
Our guide was very knowledgeable and entertaining. We saw the highlights and were able to continue exploring on our own. Did to Covid the crowds were very light except for in the Sistine Chapel. The 8:30 time slot helped with the crowds too.

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