Vatican Highlights Tour with Sistine Chapel

Enjoy skip-the-line early access on an abridged tour of the top Vatican attractions

Travel Flexibly 5 / 5 See All 103 Reviews · 2.50h 16 max · Vatican, Italy

Are you looking for a quick Vatican tour that gets you in fast and shows you the best art in the Vatican Museums? Then this is the tour for you! You'll enter the Vatican Museums an hour before the crowds with your small group and see the most important collections and rooms in just 2 hours. You can quickly explore the Sistine Chapel and key rooms and artwork in the Vatican with plenty of time left in your day to explore Rome. This tour is ideal for those who just want a brief Vatican tour.

Tour Details
  • Skip the line Vatican tickets
  • View of St. Peters
  • Pinecone Courtyard
  • Gallery of Candelabra
  • Galley of Tapestries
  • Gallery of Maps
  • Sistine chapel
  • Creation of Man
  • Last Judgement
  • St Peter’s Basilica on Your Own
  • La Pietá
  • Baldacchino By Bernini

Meet your guide at the top of the stairs near Caffé Vaticano, across from the Vatican Museums. Then jump in the early-access line to see the Sistine Chapel before most of the other tourists. This is especially helpful since it's a shorter Vatican tour that hits the top highlights you shouldn't miss. You'll learn many amazing facts about the history of the Sistine Chapel and other art in the most popular galleries of the Vatican before enjoying the rest of your day in Rome. Your 2-hour tour includes:

  • Skip-the-line entry to the Vatican

  • Quicker guided tour of key attractions

  • Guided tour of St. Peter's Basilica

  • A fun, English-speaking guide

The Best Vatican Galleries

Explore the Gallery of the Candelabra, Gallery of the Tapestries, and one of our favorite collections, the Gallery of the Maps. Based on painted topographical maps of Italy by Dominican Italian friar Ignazio Danti, the Gallery of Maps is both beautiful and informative. Predating a unified Italy by nearly 300 years, the Gallery of Maps shows the length and breadth of the peninsula in the late 1500s. 

The Sistine Chapel

While you stand beneath the frescoes of Michelangelo's Sistine Chapel, it’s impossible not to appreciate how difficult it must have been for Michelangelo to toil away year after year at this masterpiece. Visiting the Vatican is simply not complete without a Sistine Chapel tour. The chapel is inside the museums, so entrance is included in your Vatican tour. 

Please note: The Sistine Chapel is a sacred place, so both men and women must cover their knees and shoulders. Otherwise, you may be refused entry to a portion of your Vatican tour. We understand the summers in Rome are hot - a great alternative is to bring a shawl/scarf/sweater with you. That way, you can cover your knees and shoulders when necessary. 

Pio Clementino Museum and Nero’s Bathtub

Enjoy a visit to a collection of the most important Roman and Greek artwork at the Pio Clementino Museum. Visit three of the world’s most iconic statues: the Apollo Belvedere, Laocoön and His Sons, and the Belvedere Torso. Learn the stories behind the statues, before visiting Nero’s one-of-a-kind red marble bathtub.

St. Peter's Basilica

Your last stop will be at St. Peter's Basilica where your guide will share a brief overview of what you see inside. This massive icon of a church is where St. Peter's remains are believed to be buried, but it's the architecture and artwork that also set this church apart. Stand in awe under St. Peter's dome and the magnificent canopy (Baldachin) and explore the basilica's collection of art, relics, mosaics, and sculptures.

Please note that St. Peter's Basilica is closed on Wednesdays for the Papal Audience and can occasionally experience other unexpected closures. If this happens, your guide will make up the time at other areas within the Vatican.

 

Covid Guidelines


What you get with this tour
Skip the Line
Vatican tickets included
English-Speaking Guide
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103 total reviews

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5.0/5 (based on 103 reviews)
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1 stars
09 August 2022
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Reviewed by
Brett Langdon

Vatican Sistine tour
01 December 2021
E
Reviewed by
Elana Shapiro

Rafa was excellent. She made the experience so meaningful with her knowledge. Only four people on our tour! Highly recommend. Great directions where to meet. Totally worth it. Thank you Rafa

John Anderson
23 September 2021
J
Reviewed by
John Anderson

Raffle was excellent. 11 on a 10 scale!

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Frequently Asked Questions

Where to meet?

Meet your guide in front of Caffé Vaticano on Viale Vaticano, 100. This is across the street from the Vatican Museum entrance. Our friendly welcome staff will be there holding The Tour Guy signs.

What to bring?

Please be sure to meet Vatican dress code requirements by covering your knees and shoulders in the most sacred religious areas like the Sistine Chapel. You'll also want to wear comfortable shoes since this is a walking tour.

Do we really get access before the crowds on this tour?

The Vatican opens at 9:00 am to the general public, but this tour has access to the 8:00 am early entrance line. You can avoid the longest line for general admission, but there is still a short security line to go through before actually entering the Vatican

Does this tour always include St. Peter's Basilica?

St. Peter's Basilica is always closed on Wednesday mornings for the weekly papal audience. If you book a tour on Wednesday, your guide will make up the time in other fascinating areas.

Is there a dress code to enter the religious sites on this tour?

We ask both men and women to cover knees and shoulders, otherwise the Vatican might refuse entry to religious sites and you’ll miss out on a portion of your tour. We understand the summers in Rome can be hot, so a great alternative is to bring a shawl/scarf/sweater with you. That way you can cover your knees and shoulders when necessary.

What to bring?

Please be sure to meet Vatican dress code requirements by covering your knees and shoulders in the most sacred religious areas like the Sistine Chapel. You'll also want to wear comfortable shoes since this is a walking tour.

Where to meet?

Meet your guide in front of Caffé Vaticano on Viale Vaticano, 100. This is across the street from the Vatican Museum entrance. Our friendly welcome staff will be there holding The Tour Guy signs.

Does the Vatican ever experience sudden closures?

During state visits or special religious events, parts of the Vatican may be closed unexpectedly and without much notice. If an area normally visited during a tour is suddenly closed, our guide will still provide explanations of the closed areas from outside. They will even show you another gallery to compensate for the lost time in the usual location.

What if I have concerns about my mobility on this tour?

If you have any doubts about your mobility, we suggest taking a Private Vatican Tour so your needs can be better accommodated for the pace and navigating a few stairs.

Where does this tour end?

This Vatican tour will end in or just outside of St. Peter's Basilica. You're free to stay in the church and explore some more if you like.

Total: $72.75

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$67.55 / per person
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