Vatican dome closeup

Private Extended Vatican Museums & Sistine Chapel Tour with Bramante Staircase & St. Peter's Basilica

Vatican Partner Benefits
5.00
Out of 27 Reviews
  • Duration
    4.5 h.
  • Start time
    09:00
  • Meeting Point
    Near Museum Entrance (Details at Booking)
  • Operating Days
    Mon, Tue, Wed, Thu, Fri, Sat
  • Language
    English
See special-access areas not visited by the general public as well as the Vatican’s most impressive spaces, including the Sistine Chapel, St. Peter’s Basilica, the Vatican Pinacoteca and the Bramante Staircase. And do it all with a dedicated, private, expert English-speaking guide.

Alessandra was wonderful! She had so much knowledge and genuine interest in the Vatican. She was kind and accommodating and patient with us. We'd love another tour with her!

Jamie

Tour Highlights

  • No Wait Entry to the Vatican Museums through our exclusive Vatican Partners Entrance
  • See the treasures of the Holy See including the Sistine Chapel, Raphael Rooms and more
  • Explore the masterpieces of the Vatican Painting Gallery and the normally off-limits Bramante Staircase
  • Skip the Line Access to St. Peter's Basilica and the Pietà with possibility to explore after the tour
  • Enlightening commentary from a private local Vatican expert throughout the tour
Girl looking at the Last Judgement in Sistine Chapel

Sistine Chapel

Or the Cappella Magna as it was originally named, this towering chapel is the official residence of the Pope and known for the ‘The Last Judgement’ by Michelangelo upon its ceiling.

Raphael's fresco in Vatican Museums

Vatican Pinacoteca

Commissioned by Pius IX, this impressive building was built to house a collection of paintings belonging to various popes and was completed in 1931.

Bramante Staircase from top

Bramante Staircase

Built by Pope Julius II to enter his private residence by chariot, this spiral double helix staircase is illuminated by a bright canopy located high above its pinnacle.

Description

The priceless masterpieces of the Vatican Museums stretch on for miles. Over nine miles, in fact, much of which isn’t viewable by the general public. This Extended Vatican Museum private tour will allow you to explore deeper into these treasured archives than ever, before into rarely-accessed areas, than on a classic Vatican tour.

With our No Wait Access, you’ll we welcomed across the velvet ropes to the spiral, carved stone Bramante Staircase. Built in 1512, people marvel at the idea that it once bore the weight of men on horseback. Today, few are allowed to step foot upon it, making this experience that much more unique.

Your expert, local English-speaking guide, dedicated to your utter enjoyment and entertainment, will introduce you to the Vatican Pinacoteca gallery of paintings, which includes: Leonardo Da Vinci’s unfinished ‘St. Jerome in the Wilderness’, Raphael’s ‘Transfiguration’, and Caravaggio’s ‘Deposition from the Cross.’ You’ll also bask in awe before the Gallery of Tapestries, Gallery of the Candelabra and Gallery of the maps, the Pinecone Courtyard, and one of the most impressive highlights of any Vatican tour – the Raphael Rooms.

As spectacular as the house of Raphael is, the most famous room of the Vatican Museum is by far the Sistine Chapel. Throughout your tour, your dedicated tour guide will explain the vivid works of art and what each section represents, assisted by photos and drawings, so that when you arrive at this location you will better appreciate their rich histories and interpretations. Armed with this information, and in such a popular tourist footpath, you can appreciate the awesome splendour uninterrupted by the ongoing and sometimes intrusive commentary experienced with other tour operators.

Finally we’ll take you through a special-access doorway within the Sistine Chapel where you will be whisked past another long line of patient visitors to St. Peter’s Basilica. Every day (except Wednesday when the Papal Audience calls upon this church) we offer fully-guided tours within this enormous building. One of the most important places of worship in all of Christianity, St. Peter’s is also home to Michelangelo’s world-renowned sculpture, ‘La Pieta.’ In fact Michelangelo, Bernini, Bramante and Maderno, were the designers behind the entire edifice, which is artfully apparent by its impressive architecture. It is a splendid way to end your Extended Vatican Museum private tour experience.

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What's included

  • No Wait Access into the Vatican Museums  
  • Vatican Museums entrance ticket and reservation fee
  • Access to the Sistine Chapel
  • Skip the Line entrance into St. Peter’s Basilica
  • Headsets for groups of five or more, so you can always hear your guide
  • Private, dedicated English-speaking tour guide

What's not included

  • Gratuities
  • Hotel pick-up/drop-off
  • Food/Beverage

Meeting Point

Important notes

  • St. Peter's Basilica and other religious sites are subject to occasional closures for religious ceremonies. When this occurs, we will provide guests with an extended tour of the Vatican Museums, or appropriate alternative. In these cases we are unable to provide refunds or discounts. Appropriate dress is required for entry into some sites on this tour. Knees, shoulders and backs must be covered. Due to increased security measures at many attractions some lines may form on tours with 'Skip the Line' or 'No Wait' access.

FAQs

  • I am taking a Vatican Tour that includes Saint Peter’s Basilica, will we go up the dome?

    It is possible to climb the Dome on your own if you wish, however you will need to purchase a ticket directly on site.  Our tours do not include a visit to the Dome. Please note that if you intend to climb the Dome after your tour ends, you should make sure to book a morning tour (not on a Wednesday) as the Dome access is already closed in the afternoon before our afternoon tours reach Saint Peter’s Basilica, and the Basilica is often closed on Wednesday mornings.

  • Where does the tour meet?

    The tours meet at a location very close and convenient to the entrance of the Vatican Museums. Full details of the exact location are included on the confirmation voucher you will receive when you book your tour.

  • At the end of the tour, will I be able to explore the Vatican Museums on my own?

    No. With our tickets, it is not possible to re-enter the Vatican once you leave as the Vatican tickets are single entry only.

Private Extended Vatican Museums & Sistine Chapel Tour with Bramante Staircase & St. Peter's Basilica Reviews

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She was great! Very...

She was great! Very knowledgeable about both the museum and the art.

Cristina is a great guide...

Cristina is a great guide whose knowledge of the Vatican, it's history and artworks enhanced our experience dramatically. I would recommend Cristina and this tour to everyone who wants to learn and absorb the many features of this beautiful city and all of its wonders.

Very knowledgable...

Very knowledgable, current and friendly

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