Walks of Italy

Walks of Italy

Book Tour
View Tours
Pristine Sistine™ Tour
Watch
Video

Key Details

  • City: Vatican
  • Duration: 3 hrs 45 mins
  • Start Time: 7:30 AM

Tour Highlights

  • Stand on the altar of the Sistine Chapel and admire the little details of Michelangelo’s masterpiece – without being pushed or shoved! We enter the museums before the general public.

  • See the best of the Vatican City in under four hours. With a guided tour of the Sistine Chapel, the Vatican Museums (including the Raphael Rooms) and St. Peter’s Basilica, you’ll cover all the bases.

  • Engage with the art and architecture of the Vatican. Our guides are passionate art historians, while our groups never number more than 12, so you’ll get the most from your once-in-a-lifetime visit.

Enter the Vatican before the crowds Rush to the Sistine Chapel before the public Busy Vatican Museum corridors See the Sistine Chapel when it's almost empty Guide uses aids to explain Sistine frescoes The Sistine Chapel Roof Visit the Raphael Rooms The School of Athens by Raphael Raphael Rooms: Can you spot Raphael? Raphael Rooms: Do you see Rocky? This sculpture inspired Michelangelo The Belvedere Torso Ancient Greek sculptures, Vatican Museums Nero's bath (its literally priceless!) The Laocoon Group, Vatican Museums Apollo Belvedere, Vatican Museums The Gallery of the Maps, Vatican Museums St. Peter's Basilica, included on our Pristine Sistine Tour Inside St. Peter's Basilica Bernini's 'Baldachin' altar, St. Peter's Basilica Michelangelo's 'Pieta', St. Peter's Basilica The ceiling of St. Peter's Basilica Bernini's stained glass window, St. Peter's Basilica Rubbing St. Peter's foot for luck Pristine Sistine Chapel tour ends at St. Peter's Square

EXTENDED TOUR DESCRIPTION

ENTER THE SISTINE CHAPEL BEFORE THE GENERAL PUBLIC

There are moments that stay with you forever. Visiting the Sistine Chapel and seeing the masterpieces of Michelangelo should be one of those. For too many visitors, this special experience is ruined by overcrowding, but what if there was a way to guarantee your perfect moment?

Our Pristine Sistine™ Chapel Tour enters the Vatican Museums one hour before they open to the general public. Over the last five years we've practiced this tour on over 50,000 guests, crafting the best possible experience of the Vatican Museums (even during the crowded summer months!) Along with your guide, you'll power through empty galleries to be the first inside the Sistine Chapel – so you can enjoy these masterpieces in peace – then embark on a full tour of the Vatican Museums and St. Peter’s Basilica.

Our guides have been carefully chosen as the perfect travel companions, enriching your visit with witty anecdotes and entertaining details to bring world-famous works to life. Entering before the public you’ll have time to get up close to the art, admiring it from every angle, without having to use your elbows. But that’s only the start of our journey.

ENGAGE WITH THE BEST OF THE VATICAN MUSEUMS COLLECTION

We say engage because that’s what you’ll do. Your guide will lead you on a carefully- crafted route through the best of the collection, teaching you not just about the art and history of the collection (which spans from Ancient Greece to a very modern “Squashed Tomato”) but the history of the Papal Palaces too and the many characters that have lived, worked, ruled and painted here.

Traveling in small groups of only 12 people or fewer (with personal headsets in case it’s a little loud) you’ll always be able to hear your guide and engage with their stories, asking all the questions you can think of. We won’t finish at the Vatican Museums though. Our next stop is the world’s largest ancient basilica.

SKIP THE LINES INTO ST. PETER’S BASILICA

As an official Vatican tour operator, we’ll go directly from the Vatican Museums to St. Peter’s Basilica, bypassing long general access lines and saving a 30-minute walk. Everything about this incredible building is awe-inspiring. From Bernini’s monumental carved Baldachin altarpiece to Michelangelo’s emotional ‘Pietà’ and the huge dome whose completion (literally) threatened to tear the basilica in half.

As you explore every nook and cranny of this huge building, you’ll get an insight into the heart of the Catholic Church and Renaissance Italy with our passionate guides at the helm. Our Pristine Sistine™ Chapel Tour guarantees that perfect Sistine moment – plus an engaging and entertaining three hours to follow.

You’ll probably only visit the Vatican City once. Make it perfect with our original, pristine tour.

WHICH START TIME SHOULD I CHOOSE?

Through the summer months we're offering two start times on this tour: 7.30AM or 8AM. The 7:30AM start time gets you inside just as the doors open at 8AM, while the 8AM tour aims to enter between 15 and 30 minutes later. We would always recommend starting earlier because there are fewer people inside the Museums and entry is a little faster, but if you value an extra 30 minutes in bed, the 8AM tour still enters the Museums before the general public. The 8AM start time is a little cheaper too, with a €2 discount per person.

Sites visited

  • Sistine Chapel (twice)
  • Raphael Rooms
  • Belvedere Courtyard with Apollo Belvedere & Laocoön & His Sons
  • Pinecone Courtyard
  • Gallery of the Candelabra
  • Gallery of the Maps
  • Gallery of the Tapestries
  • St. Peter’s Basilica
  • St. Peter’s Square

Included

  • Skip the Line Access tickets to the Vatican Museums (with early entrance an hour before the general public!)
  • Skip the Line Access to St. Peter’s Basilica
  • Expert Walks of Italy tour guide
  • Small groups, never more than 12 people
  • Headsets

Reviews

5-stars from over 2163 Customer Reviews

LAura was very lovely and knowledgable and made our tour very enjoyable
This was an amazing tour. The Vatican is such a massive historical gem and we learned so much. Thank you! Our tour guide was great!
The tour guides we had from Walks of Ítali were funny, full of stories and fun facts. Highly recommend them!
Max was our guide, and he exceeded our expectations, which was amazing since our friends had told us what a great tour they went on. Max was extremely knowledgeable and the pace was excellent.
LOVED this tour and guide. She was amazing!!!
Knowledgeable guide. Great experience except too many visitors in area at same time.
Claudia was just outstanding. Understated but very well educated and patient. Did a very good job of explaining everything to us. Seemed like a nice person too.
This was great
Our tour guide was amazing and very detailed. He made our visit to the Pristine Sistine - The Chapel a memorable one. Best Regards, The Meier Family (Michael, Leticia and Marco Meier)

Important information

Before you travel, please read our important notes about possible disruptions & site entrance requirements

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.

Note: We advise our clients that St.Peter's Basilica may be closed during special celebrations/festivities, including the Easter ceremonies. If this occurs during your visit, we will spend more time inside the Sistine Chapel and the Vatican Museums. 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.

IMPORTANT: 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 info@walksofitaly.com 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.

Book Another Tour Now & Save 10%!
(Offer valid on these tours only)
When booking this tour you’ll have the option to add any of the below to your cart.
Book both tours together and save 10% on the second tour.
Offer only valid on listed tours purchased at the same time. Non-transferable.
SAVE
10%
Welcome to Rome Tour & Gelato
€39,00
More Info
from
€35,10
SAVE
10%
Premium Colosseum Tour
€56,00
More Info
from
€50,40
SAVE
10%
Pompeii & Amalfi Coast from Rome
€169,00
More Info
from
€152,10
LAura was very lovely and knowledgable and made our tour very enjoyable
Was disappointed to see many tour groups gain entrance before we did. Those groups were in a different line. Had expected to be among the first groups admitted and we were not. Perhaps a little more on the smaller things than we would have preferred and not enough time on the more important things - Sistine Chapel, Raphael Rooms, especially the latter. Would have liked to have arrived at the Raphael Rooms before most of the crowd. Luigi (our guide) probably did as much as he could under the circumstances. Next time guess we will opt for private tour to cure the issues identified.
This was an amazing tour. The Vatican is such a massive historical gem and we learned so much. Thank you! Our tour guide was great!
(No comment)
Loved our tour the Pristine Sistine. Glad we got to go in early . Our second round into the Sistine Chapel was super crowded so getting to see it the first go with less people was wonderful. We also loved our tour guide ( excuse me for not remembering her name, she was from Sicily originally had dark shorter curly hair and amazing blue eyes) . She was so full of awesome information on so many things , she was the best! Thank you so much for a great tour. Connie Sechler
The tour guides we had from Walks of Ítali were funny, full of stories and fun facts. Highly recommend them!
Doriana did a wonderful job of guiding us through the Vatican. We had been there the day before for a scavi tour, and had looked around the basilica. We realized we missed so much on our own after Doriana's tour. Arriving early helped us see the most we could. She was very knowledgeable and entertaining!
(No comment)
Max was our guide, and he exceeded our expectations, which was amazing since our friends had told us what a great tour they went on. Max was extremely knowledgeable and the pace was excellent.
(No comment)
LOVED this tour and guide. She was amazing!!!
Knowledgeable guide. Great experience except too many visitors in area at same time.
(No comment)
Claudia was just outstanding. Understated but very well educated and patient. Did a very good job of explaining everything to us. Seemed like a nice person too.
This was great
The Vatican is overwhelming and 3 hours doesn't do it justice. Claudia was tremendously enthusiastic, energetic and truly loved the role she was in. It flowed to the group ( at least to me and my wife). She was extremely knowledgable of the subject and made the tour memorable, enlightening and so so enjoyable
(No comment)
Overall a great experience. Our tour guide unfortunately was sick and losing his voice so that was unfortunate, but out of his control and he still brought great energy.
(No comment)
Our tour guide was amazing and very detailed. He made our visit to the Pristine Sistine - The Chapel a memorable one. Best Regards, The Meier Family (Michael, Leticia and Marco Meier)
Mr. T was very knowledgable
(No comment)
We had a great time on the tour! Our guide was extremely klowledgable, and we were very pleased with him! Meeting place was easy to find, and someone from Walks of Italy was there and easy to identify as soon as we arrived. I would definitely recommend!
Awesome experience; Tango was a fantastic guide. We're very glad to have seen the Vatican with your company. Best tour in Rome, hands down. Thank you!!!
Jeb did a great job of leading us through the tour. I appreciated that he knew so much about Vatican City and gave us so much information. Thanks
The tour was great. Vatican City is beautiful. The guide was super nice and seemed to know about the place. 5 out of 5 :D
Anna was fantastic! She was very knowledgable and did a great job getting us around the Vatican. Having her as a guide made our vacation exceptional!
Enthusiastic guide!
Our guide (Mr T) was fantastic - a fountain of information with a great sense of humour! The tour was very good - highly recommend going as early as possible as the crowds are suffocating.
Our guide, Cecilia, was very knowledgeable on the history of the Vatican . She also carried a tablet to show highlights or pictures of the before and after restoration of items. My Husband, a non-Roman Catholic, found the tour very informational. The Vatican Museum and the Sistine Chapel were well worth the time and money.
(No comment)
We had infant with us. Guide provided us help to take elevators , was walking with pace so that we could listen and understand everything. We loved it as with stroller its difficult to see chapel, sistine and museum with high crowd. 7.30 time was perfect for us. However 4 hours was bit long :). In anycase I suggest taking this trip for early morning less crowd visit,
Fantastic tour.
Great tour, Highly recommend..We enjoyed each and every minute, very informational and very professional service. thanks for making our vacation enjoyable
(No comment)
Very comprehensive tour, friendly and competent guide.
great look at the Chapel, with a great guide, a wealth of knowledge.
Our guide Cecilia was wonderful. Energetic, good sense of humour, friendly....an excellent tour. I would recommend the tour, and Cecilia, highly.
(No comment)
We enjoyed the food and history tour of the area. The only concern was although I provided information regarding a food sensitivity our tour guide was not aware of it and in some instances the vendor had nothing I could sample or was a plain piece of bread, which was disappointing.
Doriana was an excellent guide, provided lots of good and interesting information. Would definitely book another tour with you next time I am in Italuy.
(No comment)
All was wonderful! Our guide Tiberious was great. Thank you!
We were thrilled when we found out that we would have Luigi again as our guide for the Vatican tour after the great time we had with him at the Colosseum the day before. His knowledge about the Vatican, the incredible artwork, history, and architecture was impressive. Getting into the Sistine Chapel first thing in the morning before the crowds was the most awesome part of our entire visit to Rome, we practically had the whole space to ourselves for about 20 minutes. Luigi also shared with us many details about more current events and changes taking place at the Vatican that gave us a much better understanding of the place. Definitely worth the price!!!
Our experience with this tour was amazing. So much to see and area to cover that our guide was very informative. Would recommend to others.
(No comment)
I was very happy with this tour. It was wonderful to get in before all the crowds. It was certainly worth the price I paid for it. The guide spoke very good English and there were only 10 people in our group. The group and guide moved very well together, questions answered efficiently, and did I mention, no crowds. At the end of the tour I noticed how crowded it was and was happy I was leaving instead of starting. Thanks for providing this option.
Suzanna was absolutely amazing! We loved her and had the best experience, thank you so much suzanna- the newlyweds!