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VIP Alone in St. Mark’s Basilica

Key Details

  • City: Venice
  • Duration: 1hr 30mins
  • Start Time: Times vary.

Tour Highlights

  • After closing time, when visitors have been pushed out, a guard unlocks the doors of St. Mark’s Basilica for us to explore the city’s most important building completely alone!

  • Not only will we see all general access areas of St. Mark’s Basilica, traveling with an official guard we’ll unlock doors to visit special areas such as the crypt, where the bones of St. Mark himself are said to lie and the Pala d’Oro.

  • You’ll travel in a small group of max. 15 people with an expert tour guide at the helm, to tell you the stories and help you spot the details. Access is limited to Walks of Italy groups only and we’ve capped it at 4 groups per day.

St. Marks Basilica St. Marks Basilica The Horses of St Mark Gold mosaic roof tiles, St. Mark's Basilica


St Mark's Basilica, exterior


Your tour starts at St. Mark’s Square, where your guide meets you, kicking off your adventure with thrilling anecdotes and swashbuckling stories. Learn about the history of Venice and St. Mark’s Basilica—like how it received its precious relics via a 9th-century kidnapping! Then comes the real treat.

All of the passersby will wonder where you’re going as a custodian unlocks the basilica’s doors for you and walks you right in. Inside, take a deep breath. You’re experiencing St. Mark’s Basilica as almost nobody else does, or ever has ever been able to (aside from the Doge himself) – empty!

No standing elbow-to-elbow with other tourists, no seeing the church as if through a strobe light from hundreds of popping flashbulbs, no noise from the crowds. Instead, you’re alone with your guide and the custodian. So you can experience the basilica as it should be experienced: in tranquility and peace.

The horses of St. Mark's


Of course you won't have to queue outside the Basilica since entrance won't be granted to anyone but Walks of Italy groups. When you get inside, you'll feel the real benefit of this.

During the day, lines are long to see the stunning Pala d’Oro, a Byzantine altarpiece that uses more than 1,900 gems. Visiting at night though, you'll have it all to yourself, so you can walk right up without the wait.

Since you’re alone in the basilica you'll also have the rare opportunity to go where other visitors can’t. The custodian will unlock areas such as the crypt, said to be the place where the bones of St. Mark are kept. Here you can also see the stained walls, from the past floods that have devastated Venice—the crypt used to be flooded every time the high tide hit the city.

But that's not all. There's another hidden advantage to visiting St. Mark's Basilica at night. This is when the mosaics are at their most beautiful, with all 43,000 square feet lit up, glimmering and sparkling in the dark.

Incredible frescoes inside St.Mark's Basilica


If just seeing the basilica this way weren’t entrancing enough, there’s also your guide, an expert who’s passionate about Venetian art and history—and about sharing it with you in the most fun way possible. You’ll hear the tale of how St. Mark’s became St. Mark’s, a story that pivots on a prophecy, a kidnapping and a dangerous sea voyage!

Throughout your St. Mark’s Basilica tour, you’ll travel in small groups of only 15 people or fewer. As Walks of Italy is the only company with this access, we can also guarantee that there will be no more than four groups inside the basilica when you visit.

Walk with us inside the heart of Venice, witnessing the basilica as it was meant to be seen – imposing, impressive and exquisite. For a one-hour tour that will give you memories to last a lifetime!

Sites visited

  • St. Mark’s Square
  • St. Mark’s Basilica
  • The crypt of St. Mark’s
  • The Pala d’Oro altarpiece


  • Exclusive access to St. Mark’s after closing
  • Small groups of 15 people or fewer
  • Expert Walks of Italy tour guide


5-stars from over 548 Customer Reviews

The tour was great and our guide was fantastic
He was awesome!!!! Sooo passionate and interesting!!! Best tour guide we had the entire time!!!
We loved this tour. Our guide was great. A truely unique experience & would not hesitate to recommend.

Important information

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

Please remember that the basilica is a holy place and attire must be appropriate: 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.

Backpacks are prohibited inside of St. Mark's Basilica.

This tour runs rain or shine.

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.
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The tour was great and our guide was fantastic
He was awesome!!!! Sooo passionate and interesting!!! Best tour guide we had the entire time!!!
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Andrea's knowledge about Catholicism, Venice, and architecture were the perfect combination to make our tour of St Mark's Basilica outstanding. His energy drew us in the whole time, and we learned and enjoyed learning many details that aren't in the guidebooks. Our teenage kids loved the guide. The tour was also well planned, with the exclusive after hours access making it very special. The tour was great, great, great. Highly recommend.
We loved this tour. Our guide was great. A truely unique experience & would not hesitate to recommend.
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We loved the tour and we're not big tour people but this was everything you could want.
She was an excellent guide, made the experience very memorable, I highly recommend this to others
Outstanding! Mose was excellent. I appreciated the small group atmosphere as he was able to answer questions. I was impressed with the tour and would highly recommend Walks of Italy.
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Elena was a very knowledgeable and engaging guide. The tour was fantastic, a real special opportunity.
Excellent tour. I would highly recommend it. Loved the guide.
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My friend and I had an absolutely wonderful time on the After Hours tour. It was such an incredible experience to be there, without the other tourists crowding in on every side. Our tour guide was extremely knowledgeable, and gave great information about the history of the church, and basically the history of the importance of the church in Venice. We recommended your tour to at least two other people while in Venice, and we would do so again. The next time I am in Venice I plan to do it again. Many thanks for everything. Susan Glimcher
The guide was excellent, very informative. The only disappointment of the tour was that the basilica did not leave the lights on for long enough. They were on only about 20 minutes. I expected an hour. The guide took us to see the crypt. When we returned to the main church, the lights had been turned off.
very nice tour of St. Marks after hours without the crowds. very informative. great experience
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We really enjoyed the experience. Our guide was very good.
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Everything about the Alone in St. Mark’s Tour was fantastic. The guide was wonderful and being alone and unhurried in the cathedral was a magical experience. When they slowly illuminated the mosaics for our little group, it was one of the highlights of our trip. Five stars and worth every penny.
Nicoletta was a very informative guide who was also sensitive to the queries of the individuals in the group. She made it a special event.
Being able to enter Saint Mark's Cathedral without dealing with the crowds was very nice. Seeing the beautiful artwork was lovely. When I book a tour guide I expect to learn things that are not obvious when looking on my own. The guide was a lovely lady-perhaps there wasnt a lot to tell tourists about regarding this particular Cathedral. She was very good at letting us know which mosaic went with different stories in the scriptures but there was no depth of information that was shared, no interesting information regarding the building or the history behind the Basilica. It just was not an interesting tour.
My husband & I thought the tour was great and loved it but most importantly our guide Andrea was wonderful. He was so knowledgeable and made a real difference. Karen & Richard
Our guide had such fantastic personality and enthusiasm, a long with great knowledge. Sorry can't recall his name! The officials seemed to turn the lights off early which the guide had no control over but was a bit disappointing. You probably need an extra person helping with check in. Compared to the other walks we did it was chaos with people everywhere
My guide was fantastic - amuzinf intelligent energetic on time - clear and respectful. What a combination! Loved the trip - and many many thanks to the young coordinator the day before who talked through the closed gate with the Basiclica guard and got me a ticket for the following night by calling customer service and shining his iPhone flashlight on my credit card so I could give it over the phone - my experience was fabulous!
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Eleonora was an outstanding tour guide. The after hours tour is a must see.
Our guide was very knowledgeable and we could understand everything she said.
Nicoletta was our guide and she was amazing. Very special person and she provided a fantastic tour. Truly enjoyed the experience
There were six of us. We loved our tour. Our guide Marie Therese was excellent. We were not impressed that the staff in the basilica turned off the lights at 21:20, ten minutes before the end of our tour. Perhaps you will pass on this feedback to those responsible.
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Excellent tour very knowledgeable guide
Absolutely fabulous - the highlight of our trip to Venice. Many thanks
This was a fabulous tour and the highlight of our stay in Venice.
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This was an amazing tour. Perhaps one of the best we had in Italy. It is a unique experience and Maria was absolutely amazing. She clearly had a passion for the history of Venice and StMarks and it showed in her presentation.
The thing that drew me to this tour was being able to see St. Marks without the huge crowds. Please keep these tours small.
We enjoyed the explanation and the tour very much. The tour guide was very knowledgeable and made the tour very interesting. It was a great experience.
Elena was an excellent tour guide, her passion is infectious. Being in the Basilica with only 12 people is a luxury that I recommend to everyone.
Excellent guide, viewing St Marks awesome!
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Excellent visit. Is undoubtedly the highlight of our Venice trip
Highly satisfied with our tour, very knowledgeable and the late night tour was amazing! Well worth the price.
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