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St Peter's Square

St. Peter's Square (Piazza San Pietro) is the grand colonnaded area in front of St. Peter's Basilica at the Vatican. A visually imposing entry to this great church, the semi-circular colonnades on either side designed by the Roman Baroque sculptor ... 

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Certiļ¬ed reviews by travelers like you.

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
December 2014

This was by far the highlight of my trip to Rome and it is without a doubt due to City Wonders Tour Guide, Tiffany, from Indiana! She was absolutely amazing! She got my group seats in the second row on the left side of the audience and close to the aisle which gave us a clear, close up view of the Pope three times. First, when he entered the square near the guard station in the Pope Mobile, then when he rode past the front of the audience, and then a third time when he rode past the left side of the audience prior to beginning his address. We were clearly placed in the ideal location. Prior to the Pope coming out we had to wait approximately an hour and a half and that is when Tiffany's friendly, charismatic personality shone along with her unbelievable knowledge of Ancient History, Christianity, and Catholicism. I felt as if I learned more from her in an hour and a half than I learned in my semester long college course. I was actually slightly disappointed that she had to stop her presentation for the Pipe to come out. Of course, I got over it the moment I saw the Pope. I would highly recommend this tour and if possible, be sure to request Tiffany from Indiana!

Doing what: Papal Audience Tickets and Presentation

4 star rating: Recommended
December 2014

The Papal audience was a once in a life time experience. Our guide met us at the prearranged point. The directions to getting to the point were accurate. We of course were one of many people and we were grouped in to smaller groups as we proceeded to the area that we sat. Our guide was great at getting us to a great place to sit. She gave us a oral history of St. Peter's square and a brief history of the Vatican. We had headsets so that we could hear her very clearly. We found her very helpful and interesting, however with all tour groups there are some members of the group that are not as respectful to the guide. That would be the only negative aspect of this tour. It did rain so come prepared for all weather elements.

Doing what: Papal Audience Tickets and Presentation

3 star rating: Worth doing
November 2014

This is not a "tour" but just a meeting with a guide who will assist you in getting into St Peter's Square to get a good seat. Be prepared to meet your guide very early who will explain that he will break into the line of pilgrims who are already lined up to get in. ( There is no admission to enter the square to see the Pope, it's free, but you would have to get your ticket a day ahead. So, this " tour" provides that for you.) Once it's time for the police to begin letting people into the square, your guide will lead you into the crowd and tell you to try to stick to him like glue. The police will stop you and look inside your bags (you are allowed a small bag) . The guide waits for all in the tour group to get through the police but then it's time to literally run with him to get a seat on the barricade. We were able to be seated right on the barricade which meant the Pope would pass right in front of us in the Popemobile. So, this was a good thing. After we were seated, our guide told us a little bit about the Square and St.Peter's. At aprox 9 a.m. the Pope arrived and our guide left us. The Pope passed right in front of us so we had a great seat. People behind us pressed in on us standing on our chairs to try to get a better view. Once the Pope is on the main stage and ready to speak, everyone sits back down. The Pope will speak in Italian and then other clergy will repeat what he said one at a time in different languages. The Pope comes down into the area where special needs people are and he stops to kiss and bless them. He is very open to the crowd at all times. What you are paying for on this tour is a person who knows how to get you through the crowd to get a good seat. It's pretty chaotic so I thought it was probably worth it to get a good seat. Be prepared to run and to be in the midst of pushing crowds.

Doing what: Papal Audience Tickets and Presentation

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
October 2014

Rachel is an outstanding tour guide. She had to modify the tour slightly because the Pope was making an appearance in St.Peter's Square. However, I liked what she presented. She spoke clearly with easily understood English, was very informative about things I didn't know (this is our 3rd Vatican Tour) and was just a delightful person. Two Thumbs up for an excellent tour/presentation. Recommend highly.

Doing what: Skip the Line: Vatican Museums Walking Tour including Sistine Chapel, Raphael's Rooms and St Peter's

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
October 2014

We were impressed by all the tours run by City Wonders and this was no exception. The Papal Audience is a very confusing event and, if you've not done it before, I would highly recommend doing it this way. Our guide led us into the square and she ran to the area in the front of the second section and reserved our seats. We were located in the first row directly behind the wooden barrier along the road the "Pope-Mobile" would take. He actually passed within five feet of us twice on his ride into the square. Our guide gave us a lot of information about the audience so we knew exactly what to expect. Would definitely use this service again.

Doing what: Papal Audience Tickets and Presentation

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
October 2014

For the faithful and religious this is a must see if you are in Rome on Wednesday. Check the web to see if the Pope is in town during your visit and if the tour times match your availability. I read some reviews complaining about the price, seats, and initial part of the experience. Yes, the tickets are free, you can get them on your own but it is a process and requires a lot of pre planning and some running around the day before, Tuesday. The price was well worth the saved efforts as we were on tours the Tuesday needed to get the tickets, and dealing with the church embassies to request the tickets in the first place. Yes, if you can get tickets on your own, and get in line at 6:30am exactly you will be able to get better seats and if you know the route of the Pope Mobile through St Peter's Square you can get there too, again this requires a lot of hassle and time to do which we didn't have time for. Our guide was very informative, funny, and helpful. She got us good seats with a decent view and I was able to get a frame filling picture of the Pope Francis from his Pope Mobile and a 200mm lens. In the summer this will be a very very hot visit. In October it was still hot but not too bad. Security check was not too bad but you MUST go to the bathroom prior to getting inside as the line inside are too long and far from the seats, it took my wife 35 min to go and get back and she almost missed the beginning. I was happy with the tour as I was able to plan the rest of our Rome tours into this without worrying about getting into lines or on waiting lists at the American Catholic church site on Tuesday and avoiding the mad dash for seats when the square is opened. It is general admission and there are no seat reservations for anyone, except the area for married couples.

Doing what: Papal Audience Tickets and Presentation

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
October 2014

this experience greatly exceeded our expectations. the tour was organized by city wonders and was very well organized in a pretty chaotic environment. the meeting spot was well marked and easy to find. our guide, filomena, is the best! she knew exactly what she was doing and how to strategize our entrance to get the best seats. she succeeded in getting us 2nd row seats so that when Pope Francis rode through the audience, we were mere feet from him. and we got to see him twice! she also entertained us with her vast knowledge of the event, the history of st. peter's square and the basilica, as well as the vatican museums. i can not say enough great things about city wonders but especially filomena. i highly recommend this tour.

Doing what: Papal Audience Tickets and Presentation

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
October 2014

The Papal Audience was unbelievable! Our guide (I think her name is Tanya) provided such good information on St Peters Square, the Pope, and the Vatican as a whole. Most important of all, she guided us to a place where we had the best view of Pope Francis when he went around on the pope mobile!

Doing what: Papal Audience Tickets and Presentation

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
October 2014

Once in a life? Can you imagine being at one meter of Papa Francesco touring around you in St Peter's square? I've been there, Yes!
Thanks Viator and CityWondres Tours.
Augusto

Doing what: Papal Audience Tickets and Presentation

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
October 2014

Excellent. Exactly as stated. Met as described and straight inside, going past a mass of queueing people. Why don't they use the Net?

Extremely informative guide. She really knew her stuff. I hadn't realised just how extensive the museums were. Much walking and climbing steps so you have to be a bit fit. Not for the infirm or even wheelchair uses - thought it lopoked like special arrangements could be made for wheel chair users. Not sure. Didn't see any in themuseums but did in the Sistine Chapel. And how great is that!!. Also bypassed more queues by going direct into the Basillica. And again. How fantastic that was.

On the Sunday before the tour we were blessed by the Pope in the Square!! Bit busy on Sunday, not so bad on Monday!!

Doing what: Skip the Line: Vatican Museums Walking Tour including Sistine Chapel, Raphael's Rooms and St Peter's

4 star rating: Recommended
October 2014

Amazing and great. Tour guide went on way too long about a pine cone statue in the square which was not great. Also went on to long about the paintings in the chapel. Less talk and more looking would be great

Doing what: Skip the Line: Vatican Museums Walking Tour including Sistine Chapel, Raphael's Rooms and St Peter's

3 star rating: Worth doing
October 2014

I believe this buy is worth not having to wait in a long line to get your tickets and a huge line, other than getting into the square. I wasn't too happy with our guide and where we ended up. The best position to see the Pope up close would be by the isles set up where they drive the Pope through. It dawned on my afterward and its something that I would have expected the guide to inform and direct us too...that's the experience...I think. We did get seats and had a view but I was left with a bit of regret. I would still recommend this offer but I would recommend breaking away to find a spot for yourself as opposed to 12-15 people. The guide did give us information and some history.

Doing what: Papal Audience Tickets and Presentation

3 star rating: Worth doing
October 2014

Great experience on a beautiful sunny Wednesday in October.

The only drawback is that the minute the Pope was sighted everybody (and I mean everybody), stood on their chairs which is a bit disappointing for those who were not fit enough to do so and whose views of St Peter's Square and any glimpse of the Pope as he drew near, were completely blocked.

Doing what: Papal Audience Tickets and Presentation

1 star rating: I do not recommend this
October 2014

Tickets to the event are free. Get your own ahead of time and position yourself in front of the entrance to St. Peter's Square by 7:30PM. When the gates open, act like a Rroman and push and shove and run like hell to the front of the square in front on the raised, covered platform. Position yourself as close to the front and as close to the barriers around the seats as you can. Remember, in Rome, there are no rules and no courtesy. Once, the Papal audience commences, people will stand on chairs and push and shove and rush to the barriers to get as close to the Pope as possible . Your knowledgeable and experienced guide will have you seated approximately 30-35 minutes after the gates first open and positioned about 300 yards away from where the Pope speaks. You are better able to maneuver on your own rather than in a group of 20-25 people. Just get as close to the front and a barrier as possible. If you leave an inch between you and the barrier, 24 Italians will squeeze in front of you and climb on each others shoulders.

Doing what: Papal Audience Tickets and Presentation

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
September 2014

This was the highlight of my visit to Rome. My guide Sylvia was so well informed and could communicate so well it just made the whole tour so memorable. The climb up was not that bad at all. We started at 8 30am thus the crowds weren't that big until towards the end of the tour. The feeling of standing on top of St Peter's overlooking the square is just amazing. If you are not scared of heights this is truly worth it .

Doing what: Skip the Line: St Peter's Basilica Walking Tour Including views from the Top of the Cupola

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