- City: Vatican
- Duration: 2hrs 30mins
- Start Time: 3.15PM
Our shortest Vatican Museums Tour is still comprehensive; covering all the major highlights of the museums and leaving you inside St. Peter’s Basilica to explore on your own.
With a carefully-timed visit after most guests have left, you'll avoid a lot of the huge crowds at the Vatican - particularly important in summer.
- With Skip the Line Access, you’ll avoid the Vatican’s notorious lines (both at the Museums & St. Peter’s Basilica) while small groups of max 20 keep it intimate and expert Walks of Italy guides engage.
EXTENDED TOUR DESCRIPTION
Get more from your visit with a great guide & good timing.
Give the Papal Palaces the attention they deserve on our Highlights of the Vatican Museums Tour. This is the shortest of all of our Vatican tours, focusing less on the details and more on the bigger picture of art, power and politics in the Vatican City.
Let our entertaining, expert guides make the Vatican’s dramatic past come to life for you. The Sistine Chapel is, of course, the highlight of our tour. By the time we reach the chapel you’ll be well prepared to appreciate the details and quirks that make it so special – and knowing Michelangelo’s history of temper tantrums and tiffs, you’ll understand what a miracle it was that he finished it at all!
We’ve timed our Vatican Museums tour to visit at one of the latest entry times so you’ll avoid the worst of the crowds, visiting the Sistine Chapel in particular, after most of the crowds have gone home. During the summer months in particular, when tens of thousands of travelers visit every day, this difference is not to be underestimated.
SKIP THE LINE ACCESS AT THE MUSUEMS AND ST. PETER’S BASILICA.
To help you make the most of every precious moment, we have privileged entrance at the Vatican Museums. This allows us to skip the notoriously long general access line, which, during high season, often stretches for hours.
We’ve also carefully chosen our finish point. If you would like to spend more time you can end your tour inside the Sistine Chapel or alternatively, follow your guide out of the chapel through the privileged, no-line passageway and directly into to St. Peter's Basilica. With new security procedures this shortcut saves you not just a 20 minute walk out of the Museums to the Basilica; but also potential hours of waiting time – and you get it at no extra cost.
After a short introduction from our guide you can visit the Basilica on your own, to explore Michelangelo's 'Pietà' among other stunning works of art and architecture.
SMALL GROUPS OF 20 OR FEWER KEEP IT CASUAL AND ENGAGING.
Key to our tour is group size. At only 20 people or fewer it’s smaller than most other operators. Smaller groups mean you’ll to engage more with your guide, hear them more easily, ask as many questions you want and guarantee that you won’t lose them during busy periods!
When you visit the Vatican, we at Walks of Italy think that you should come away with an understanding of more than just the museum’s art collection (as fantastic as it is). It takes a special person to paint the bigger picture though, which is why we’ve spent years creating the perfect team of guides – art historians, architecture buffs and storytellers, specially trained to give you a real sense of the drama and power that has played out in these very halls.
Our small group Vatican Museum tours ensure that you get the best from your Vatican visit, seeing beyond world-famous masterpieces to appreciate the bigger picture.
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Before you travel, please read our important notes about possible disruptions & site entrance requirements
If you would like to book both our Vatican Highlights Tour and our Best of Rome Tour (including Colosseum & historic center), consider our Rome in a Day Tour, which combines the two and includes a transfer from the end point of one tour to the start of the other – allowing you to see the best of Rome and the Vatican in one day.
As with all museums, particular galleries of the Vatican museums can sometimes be closed without prior notice and pieces removed for restoration or loan. In the case of a gallery being closed, your guide will take you to another section of the museums instead.
Also, please remember that the Sistine Chapel is a holy place, and attire must be appropriate for the visit. Both men and women are asked to wear clothing that covers at least the shoulders and knees. Walks of Italy cannot be held responsible for denied entry due to improper dress. Please note that, since the chapel is at the end of the Vatican visit, it is sufficient to bring extra coverings with you and put them on before our entrance to the holy areas.
On rare occasions, when St. Peter's Basilica is being prepared for high masses or a special private event, including the Easter ceremonies, the tour group exit and/or the basilica itself can be closed without prior notification. Your guide will still give you an introduction to the church should you wish to visit this on your own at a later occasion. We are unable to provide refunds or discounts.
While the Vatican Museums are equipped with elevators for wheelchair access, they are not conveniently located on the group tour route and only give access to specific sections of the Museums. Please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have walking disabilities or if you are in a wheelchair. We can then work out a suitable alternative.
Please ensure that all members of your party have a valid ID on them on the day of the visit. This is particularly important for guests who have qualified for a senior, student, or child reduction.
For details of what you may and may not bring inside the Vatican Museums (you may not, for example, carry backpacks), click here. Guests who do bring these items will be required to leave them in the Vatican cloakroom and will be responsible for collecting them at the end of the tour. Please note that it is a 15 to 20 minute walk from St. Peter’s Square back to the entrance of the Museums.
(Offer valid on these tours only)
Book both tours together and save 10% on the second tour.
Offer only valid on listed tours purchased at the same time. Non-transferable.