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  1. Italy
  2. Lazio
  3. Rome
  4. Vatican City

Rome: Early Entry to the Vatican & The Sistine Chapel

Product ID: 78872
Enter the Sistine Chapel before it opens to the general public and enjoy Michelangelo’s masterpieces in peace before embarking on a thorough guided tour of the Vatican Museums and St. Peter’s Basilica.
About this activity
Duration: 3.75 hours
Skip the ticket line
Printed or mobile voucher accepted
Instant confirmation
Live tour guide
Cancellation policy
Cancel up to 3 days in advance for a full refund

Select participants and date:



  • Enter the Sistine Chapel 45 minutes before the general public to see the chapel at its best
  • Spend 3-hours exploring of the Vatican Museums seeing highlights including the Raphael Rooms
  • Enjoy skip-the-ticket-line access at the Vatican Museums & St Peter’s Basilica, saving your hours of waiting in line
  • Take a 1-hour guided tour of St. Peter’s Basilica
Full description
The Sistine Chapel wasn’t meant to be seen standing shoulder to shoulder with hundreds of other people. Beat the crowds by entering 45 minutes before the Sistine Chapel opens to the public and enjoy the incredible frescoes in relative peace. After spending quality time with Michelangelo’s frescoes in the Chapel, your guide will lead you on a full tour of the Vatican Museums, stopping to see all the most important works. Since you have started early, you’ll stay one step ahead of the crowds in most galleries as you enjoy fantastic art like the Raphael Rooms, the Apollo Belvedere, Laocoon and Sons, and more.

When you’ve covered the museums, you’ll enter the Sistine Chapel again, much more crowded now, and pass through a special corridor that lets you skip the ticket lines into St. Peter’s Basilica. Here, you’ll enjoy an hour long tour of the immense basilica, including stops at Michelangelo’s heart-wrenching Pietá and Bernini’s enormous baldachin altar. Afterwards you’re free to explore St. Peter’s for as long as you want.

Traveling in a small group with an expert local guide and with headsets for every guest, you’ll never have to worry about losing your group or missing an interesting piece of information - and there is a lot of interesting information. The Vatican Museums and St. Peter’s Basilica have never been more accessible.
  • Skip-the-ticket-line tickets for Vatican Museums
  • Skip-the-ticket-line access to St. Peter’s Basilica
  • Until February 29, 2020, groups are a maximum of 14 people
  • From March 1, 2020, groups are of maximum 16 people
  • Expert 5 star tour guide
  • Headsets
What’s Not Included
  • Gratuities
  • Hotel pick-up/ drop-off

Prepare for the activity

Meeting point

At the Green Bar (called l'Ottagono) in Piazza del Risorgimento. Meeting Point Directions: meet just outside the Green Bar in the middle of Piazza del Risorgimento Square. This is the only bar/ cafè located on the square. The bar is on the side of the square towards via Crescensio - close to the tram stop number 19. The closest metro/ underground stop is Ottaviano.

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Important information
What to bring
  • Passport or ID card
  • Comfortable shoes
Not allowed
  • Shorts
  • Sleeveless shirts
Know before you go
• While the Vatican Museums are equipped with elevators for wheelchair and stroller access, they are not conveniently located on the group tour route and only give access to specific sections of the Museums. As a result, the local tour operator cannot accommodate wheelchairs on any of the Vatican group tours.
• All visitors must pass through airport-style security. During high season the wait at security may be up to 30 minutes.
• Clients are advised that St.Peter's Basilica may be closed during special celebrations/festivities. If this occurs during your visit, you will spend more time inside the Sistine Chapel and the Vatican Museums. Refunds cannot be provided in such a case.
• Please ensure that all members of your party have a valid ID on them on the day of the visit (particularly for guests with reduced-price tickets due to age).
• Please note that guests may only carry small handbags inside the Vatican Museums. Larger backpacks and other items must be left at the cloakroom.
Customer reviews

Overall rating

4.8 / 5

based on 28 reviews

Review summary

  • Service
    4.8 / 5
  • Organization
    4.6 / 5
  • Value for money
    4.6 / 5
  • Safety
    4.8 / 5
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This was a wonderful tour and a great way to experience the Vatican. We had a short wait in line with other groups until the group entry time was open, but the tour guide leveraged the time to provide us details about the Sistine Chapel (tour guides aren't allowed to talk to groups in the chapel, so any provided discussion needs to take place outside of the chapel). The tour walk through part of the museum before going to the chapel, but the early start still leaves the group with nearly private access to many of these areas. Our tour may have been 1 of 5 in the chapel at the same time - making it a truly enjoyable experience to readily roam and take in all it has to offer. Following the chapel, we re-walk through parts of the museum to complete the tour and then enter to the Basilica. The tour covered the highlights of the Basilica and left us time after the actual tour to revisit the Basilica for additional areas of interest, to include the crypt. Great tour!

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December 11, 2019

Tour was exactly as described. We were the first to enter and skipped all lines. Guide was able to tell us details able Sistine paintings before we entered so that we could enjoy every minute in the chapel gazing at the ceiling and other paintings. Great information on other artworks and collections as well.

July 14, 2019

It is worth getting up in the morning: the Stanze di Raffaelo and the Sistine Chapel can be viewed in relative calm. Things get tight in the museums and the crowds spread out in St. Peter's Basilica anyway. This tour requires stamina !!!

October 29, 2019

Organized by

Walks of Italy

Product ID: 78872