The Vatican Museum is home to over nine miles of art, much of which is never seen by the general public for timing or access reasons. Our expert English-speaking guide will ensure you see its highlights in our Extended Vatican Tour, visiting hidden areas usually closed to the public, the Vatican Art Gallery, the Sistine Chapel and St. Peter’s Basilica and St. Peter’s Square.
You will see the Gallery of Maps, Gallery of Tapestries, sculpture of Lacoon and his sons, the Gallery of the Candelabra and a highlight of any tour – the spectacular Raphael Rooms. After an in-depth explanation of the artwork in the Sistine Chapel, we’ll give you some time to take it all in.
Our Extended Vatican Museum Tour also takes in more public access sights than our other tours. Most exciting perhaps is a guided visit to the Vatican Pinacoteca, the official Vatican Painting Gallery. One of the newest openings in the Museums, this vast wing houses countless masterpieces by Renaissance artists, including Raphael’s ‘Transfiguration’, Caravaggio’s ‘Deposition from the Cross’ and Leonardo da Vinci’s unfinished ‘St. Jerome in the Wilderness’– the only confirmed da Vinci work remaining in Rome.
Step behind the red rope like a VIP and you will be one of the lucky few who get to see the Vatican’s magnificent Renaissance double-helix designed staircase. It was carved out of stone by Donato Bramante, the chief architect of Rome, in 1505, after being commissioned by Pope Julius II.
The last stop of the day is St. Peter’s Basilica and Square, where we’ll use a special access door to skip yet another line. Here your guide will introduce you to Michelangelo’s famous Pietà and Bernini's incredible bronze baldachin among other masterpieces. After the tour, you can spend additional free time inside St. Peter’s Basilica.
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.
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.
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.
Throughout most of the Museums and in St. Peter's Basilica it is possible to take photographs. However, photography is strictly prohibited inside the Sistine Chapel.
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