Rome, Italy
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clock-o2 hours 30 minutes (Approx.)
ticket-oMobile ticket
commentOffered in: English

Overview

Visit St Peter’s Basilica, climb its dome, and see the papal crypt on a 2.5-hour tour. Starting early, you’ll see St. Peter’s Square without the large daytime crowds, then head to the top of the dome for panoramic vistas over the capital. Tour the basilica to admire Michelangelo’s ‘La Pietà’ among other highlights, then finish with a visit to the papal crypt — a site normally missed by other tour groups. Numbers are limited to 15 for a small-group experience.

  • 2.5-hour St. Peter’s Basilica tour including the dome and papal crypt
  • See the Swiss Guard in St. Peter’s Square without the daytime crowds
  • Walk up the steps of the dome for incredible views of Rome
  • Tour St. Peter’s Basilica and learn about its centuries-old history
  • Visit the papal crypt, and hear the stories behind the tombs
  • Enjoy a personalized, small-group tour for just 15 people

At 8am, head to Bar Polese, Piazza della Città Leonina, near St. Peter’s Square. Meet your guide, then start your tour at 8:15am.

At this early time, you’ll stroll around St. Peter’s Square without the crowds that appear later in the day. See the Swiss Guard in their colorful attire as you make your way to the dome of St. Peter’s Basilica. With your small group and guide, you’ll take the elevator to the dome’s first terrace to admire its intricate mosaics and other close-up details.

The summit of the dome sits atop of 231 steps; there’s no quick way up, but the view from the top rewards your efforts. Have your camera ready to capture a stunning panorama of Rome, stretched out from St. Peter’s Square to the Tiber River and beyond.

Make your way back down the steps, then take a tour of the basilica itself. See Bernini’s famous bronze baldachin and La Pietà, an early Michelangelo masterpiece. Rub the foot of a sacred statue for luck, and hear the history that’s steeped into the walls of the grand basilica.

Before you leave, you’ll visit the papal crypt. Discover the most significant tombs, and listen to stories about the men whose bodies were laid to rest in the crypt. Your tour finishes here.

Reviews

Viator Traveler's Reviews

4.0
8 Reviews
5 Star
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E
, Oct 2018

Not enjoyable. Guide was knowledgeable but the crowds were oppressive. I found the men working in St Peters to be arrogant and rude. We paid a lot for not much.

k
, Aug 2018

Our tour guide was just amazing. She was passionate, funny and very knowledgeable. I would live to follow her through Rome for days.

S
, Oct 2017

For me this was the best part of the whole visit to Rome, cannot recommend this tour enough, NOT for the faint hearted, if your feeling really brave and super fit you can walk the whole 500 steps or like me take the lift to the first platform great views then the last 200 steps have to be walked, steps are tiny and tight and walking around the dome on the inside is a very weird experience and the last few steps are bit scary! However once you reach the top and come out at the top of the dome its well worth it, wow takes your breath away literally, views are amazing and to look down at St Peters square is truly beautiful. We had the perfect views as it was a lovely sunny clear day! We took this tour mid September again get there early as crowds build up and the queues wind their way around St Peters square.

R
, Sep 2017

I went on this tour on 12 September 2017 - the sights themselves were fantastic - the view from the top of the Dome is AMAZING. Unfortunately let down by the tour guide. We were met by a lovely lady who took our details who then passed us over to our guide. This lady I didn't hear her name, rushed us through to the security queue so my first sight ever of St Peter's square was running behind her rather than taking in the grandeur. Once through security she then proceeded to tell us about the Swiss guard, hardly anyone could hear what she was saying. When I asked her to speak up she said I like to speak in a whisper!! It was only as we moved on and inside St Peter's that we realised that we were getting headsets so we could hear her more easily. She then explained that she had rushed us through as the queue gets long very quickly and the headsets would enable us to hear her. If only she had explained all of this BEFORE when we were outside the square instead of letting us get confused and annoyed. We were given postcards with various places that we could see from the top of the dome and were told that she would point these out to us but she didn't actually come to the top of the dome, we climbed up ourselves, nor did she point them out from where she waited for us outside the lift that takes you halfway. She also tried to stop the tour half an hour early and not take us to the crypt. I asked if we were going in the crypt and she said we could go in ourselves and pointed us in the general direction. It was not until another person got out her tour details and pointed out that it was included in the price that she said she forgot. She took us to the crypt - via the exit and we saw about half before she then rushed off. As I said - amazing tour sadly let down by the tour guide who appeared to have either gotten out of bed on the wrong side or had a prior appointment that she was rushing off too. Disappointed.

d
, Aug 2017

I enjoyed the tour however, the guide was unprepared and the directions for the meeting point was poor creating undo stress. The guide did not prepare for the group we had. Apparently there is a limit for guides and tourists before you should have a microphone when touring the Basilica. It would have been nice to be able to hear the guide and not be escorted out before she was complete with her tour. luckily I booked a more detailed trip for the afternoon by another company to give a more detailed tour. The view up to the Basilica dome was beautiful.

D
, Jul 2017

This was an excellent tour and exceeded our expectations. It was a small group and Felix, our guide, made the whole experience enjoyable and informative. By starting early you miss all the lines and crowds which makes this tour well worth doing.

B
, Jul 2017

Very interesting. Our guide was very knowledgeable. Worth the cost!

R
, May 2017

Great tour, hit all the important sites. Tour guide Emma was super informative and attentive.


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