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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 655 Customer Reviews

Our after hours tour of St Mark's Basilica was a highlight of our two days in Venice. Elena was a great guide, very informative and personable. We were thrilled with the tour. Thank you!
Excellent Josephina was great.
Marina's English was very good and clear. The tour was well structured and very interesting. It was an exceptional experience which we enjoyed a lot. I recommend it to everyone!

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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Our after hours tour of St Mark's Basilica was a highlight of our two days in Venice. Elena was a great guide, very informative and personable. We were thrilled with the tour. Thank you!
Excellent Josephina was great.
Marina's English was very good and clear. The tour was well structured and very interesting. It was an exceptional experience which we enjoyed a lot. I recommend it to everyone!
Giuseppina was an informative, engaging and delightful guide. This tour exceeded our expectations. Thank you.
It was the second time I have done this tour and the fact that there were only 9 of us this time made it much more special.
This tour was spectacular! Absolutely not-to-be-missed!
This tour was an absolute revelation! Absolutely fantastic! Our passionate guide, Alessandro, was enthusiastic, knowledgeable and marvelous! Seeing St. Mark's without the crowds was beyond description and you can be assured I will encourage anyone & everyone to not miss it! MANY years ago, I was able to walk through the Basilica slowly and enjoy but, today, with the lines/crowds, it's impossible. To be able to stroll through and take in its stunning beauty was such a gift! Grazie, Walks of Italy!!
Our guide was outstanding! Her passion was terrific!
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Wonderful tour!!! Our guide was excellent, and we could not have been more pleased. My only regret is that we didn't include the Doges tour along with the Basilica. Thank you for allowing us the opportunity to see the Basilica at night!
Beautiful! Loads of gold n mosaics.... optical illusion flooring. It was definitely cool going into church..sit down in the chairs n they slowly turn on lights.
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We loved the entire tour and our guide was Wonderful! Thank you
Elena was fantastic. Her presentation style is engaging and she's obviously knowledgable and passionate about the subject. We really enjoyed listening to her.
We were in Italy for 10 days and booked 3 tours with walks of Italy This tour was extremely enjoyable and informative. Our guide was friendly, knowledgeable and passionate about the history of St. Mark's Basilica We are very happy we selected this private tour with Walks of Italy and will be sure to recommend your company to friends & family. gigisan0505@gmail.com
Absolutely amazing. We have booked with your company in Rome, Florence and most recently Venice. Our expectations are always exceeded by your tour guides, and Marie-Therese was no exception. Her knowledge of the Basilica was excellent, with a light infusion of good humor as it has been with all your guides. We will have to say that this tour was our favorite with your company.
This was the most amazing tour i've been on. We called on the day to ask if we could join and were squeezed in. The tour guide was exceptional. Highly knowledgeable, super funny and a great story teller. Thanks so much.
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Everything went so well and our guide was so enthusiastic and knowledgeable about the subject. We really enjoyed the tour. Thank you very much!
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Our guide, Alessandro was knowledgeable and passionate. It’s was a pleasure spending the evening with him.
Very interesting tour. Our guide was knowledgeable & professional. I very much appreciated her presentation and attention to detail.
It was magnificent, definitely one of the high points of our week in Venice!
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Your tours. are excellent. You out shine every other tour company Your guides are extremely knowledgable very entertaining I would highly recommend your company to everyone
Great local guide who really did an excellent job at explaining the importance of the history of the basilica and what it means to the Venician people today.
She was excellent!
The Saint Mark's after-hours tour was amazing. Definitely a highlight from our stay in Venice! Our guide was friendly and knowledgeable and we will highly recommend this tour to others. We really appreciate Walks of Italy extending the offer of a complimentary tour to us after we provided feedback for one of our Rome Tours. Walks of Italy's customer service was amazing.
Elena was wonderful! We left the tour extremely pleased with our experience, and because of her we booked another tour in Rome. I hope she is very well paid for her great work.
Excellent experience. One of the best on our trip to Italy.
This is the best tour I have ever done. You skip all the crowds and get to see portions of St. Marks that most other people do not get to see. The guide is knowledgeable and is able to answer all questions. I highly recommend this tour.
Excellent tour and guide. It was so special to be in basilica with very few people. So close to the tomb of St Mark. Once in a lifetime.
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Andrea, our guide, was excellent. He was knowledgeable and entertaining, and worked hard to ensure that our visit to St Mark's was a memorable and unique experience.
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Nicolette was an excellent guide. The after hours tour was well worth the price.
Great tour Learned so much!
Tour was very informative. Nicolette is very knowledgeable and we enjoyed being able to see everything without all the crowds.
Excellent tour and value for the high cost.
A very interesting tour with a manageable amount of information.
Having the local born guide was amazing, he knew info that blew your mind he was incredible such a credit to of had him as guide.
Please let Lole (spelling maybe wrong) she was an excellent guide. She helped my family and myself understand the unique history of San Marco but also a glimpse into the proud people of Venice.
Our tour guide was Pavel, who was very professional, knowledgeable and provided us great information. Amalfi coast is beautiful, don't miss it.
After hours is the best time to visit this cryptic basilica. Simply amazing!!!