Vatican Museums and Monuments Skip-the-Line Guided Tour
A curated tour for the ultimate Vatican experience
- See the best of the Vatican Museums on a streamlined, skip-the-line tour that makes the most of your time.
- Tune in on personal headsets when needed so you won't miss a thing.
- Find the can’t-miss highlights among the many galleries with an expert guide to make the most of your time.
- Learn about Raphael's School of Athens and the beautiful art it helped bring to life.
- Marvel as you stand beneath the most celebrated fresco in the world, Michelangelo’s Sistine Chapel.
- Admire works of the masters, such as floor-to-ceiling paintings, tapestries, maps, and more.
- Tour the Pio Clementino Museum where ancient wonders, like the Laocoön sculpture, will amaze you.
- Get practical tips for how to visit another landmark of Vatican City, St. Peter’s Basilica.
What you'll do
Make the most of your time in Vatican City with a guided skip-the-line tour of the Vatican Museums. This tour also includes a visit to the Sistine Chapel and an expert intro to St. Peter’s Basilica so you can experience it all on the same trip. There’s a lot here to see in the Vatican, but our ...
Make the most of your time in Vatican City with a guided skip-the-line tour of the Vatican Museums. This tour also includes a visit to the Sistine Chapel and an expert intro to St. Peter’s Basilica so you can experience it all on the same trip. There’s a lot here to see in the Vatican, but our guide makes it easy and engaging. You’ll get the can’t-miss highlights and the little-known stories behind the art. Don’t just “see” the Vatican — experience it with a local guide!
Start off by meeting your guide near the entrance of the Vatican Museums. If you’re in a group of six or more, here’s where you’ll receive your headsets. We want to make sure you don’t miss a word of what your guide shares. After admiring the dome of St. Peter’s Basilica, you’ll go inside where you’ll be wowed by collections of art amassed by popes over centuries.
Your guide will show you the most important and interesting pieces. Favorites often include sculptures and paintings by Renaissance masters like Raphael and Michelangelo — those guys sure knew what they were doing. Your tour may include marveling at tapestries, candelabra, maps and more as you walk the galleries.
Finally, you’re at the Sistine Chapel. You’ll get a thorough introduction from your guide before you enter (because talking isn’t allowed inside), and then the magic happens: you’re standing beneath the most celebrated fresco in the world, Michelangelo’s masterpiece, including “The Creation of Adam.” You’ll have plenty of time to take it in, so don’t worry about being rushed.
Before the end of your tour, your guide will also share details for the best way to visit Saint Peter’s Basilica, another Vatican City treasure. Knowing the background of this church before you go inside makes your visit that much better.
Have questions on what to see, do and eat in Rome? Please ask! Our guides know the best local secrets (and love sharing them).
The Pinecone Courtyard
Crowned by a massive bronze pinecone sculpture made by ancient Romans
Pio Clementino Museum
Classical statues dating back to the 16th century
Filled with tapestries, candelabra, historic maps, and more
With Michelangelo’s famous fresco, including the Creation of Adam and other scenes
St. Peter's Basilica
A self-led visit enriched by tips on what to look for from your local guide
Plan Your Trip
Hats, sleeveless shirts, and shorts, skirts, or dresses cut above the knee aren’t allowed in the Vatican. This applies to men and women, though young children may have some leeway.
Your headset will help you hear your guide in some cases where you might need it. For small groups of five or less, headsets aren’t needed.
Tour ending point
The guided portion of your tour ends at the entrance to the Sistine Chapel. You are free to visit Saint Peter’s Basilica on your own with helpful tips from your guide on what to see.
We offer a 100% refund up to 48 hours before the start time.
Please meet us at the bottom of the big stairs between Hotel Alimandi and Caffè Vaticano (at Viale Vaticano, 100).
Your guide will be holding an orange sign with ExperienceFirst written on it.
For easier navigation, you can paste these coordinates into Google Maps: 41.907179, 12.453026.
Is admission to St. Peter’s Basilica included?
Admission to the basilica is free for your self-guided visit. Our guide will direct you to the entrance and give you recommendations on what to see and how to enjoy your visit of this historic church.
What can we bring in the Vatican Museums?
Large items like bags, backpacks, and tripods can’t be brought into the Vatican Museums. There’s a coat check, but guests are responsible for picking up their items after the tour. We recommend leaving bulky bags at your hotel.
Does the tour schedule ever change?
Unforeseen closures within the Vatican due to state visits or religious events may affect our tour, and while we try to keep guests informed, most closures aren’t announced in advance. In such cases, our guide will compensate with an extra site or gallery.
On Wednesdays, our morning tours don’t visit St. Peter’s Basilica due to a papal audience blessing. To allow for this, your guide will substitute it with a visit to other areas in the Vatican Museums.
What should I bring?
Be sure to bring ID for yourself and any children accompanying you. The Vatican Museums may check ID before entry.
Can we take photos inside the Sistine Chapel?
Photos and talking aren’t allowed inside the Sistine Chapel. Your guide will give you an overview in advance of what you can expect when you enter. Once you’re there, simply enjoy the beauty above and around you.
What is the rescheduling policy?
We understand plans change. You can always change your tour 24 hours or more before you tour. We offer a 100% refund up to 24 hours prior to your tour start time. Within 24 hours of your tour, we would have incurred hard costs and therefore cannot allow rescheduling or cancellation without costs.
What if it rains?
Our tours run rain or shine, so please check the local forecast to plan. In rare cases when we have to cancel for extreme weather, we’ll offer you the chance to reschedule or give a full refund.
Are gratuities included?
Tips are always appreciated but never expected. They’re a great way to tell your guide they did an awesome job and show your appreciation.