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Skip the lengthy lines and enjoy VIP access to the Vatican Museum’s many works of art on this guided, 4.5-hour tour. Hear the stories that bring the art to life. Visit the Vatican Pinacoteca art gallery; the Chiaramonti Museum, a collection of Roman busts and statues and the spiral Bramante Staircase. Also, see Raphael’s Rooms, with frescoes painted by renowned Renaissance artist Raphael and the Gallery of Tapestries. Visit the Sistine Chapel to see Michelangelo’s famous “Creation of Adam” painting, plus St. Peter’s Basilica and more.

Highlights

  • 4.5-hour skip-the-line Vatican art tour of the Vatican Museums, Sistine Chapel and St Peter’s Basilica
  • Learn about the history of the Vatican artwork and the talented Renaissance artists employed by the popes
  • Stop at rarely visited Vatican sites such as the Bramante Staircase (normally closed to the public), Pinacoteca and Chiaramonti Museum
  • Admire artistic highlights such as Da Vinci’s St Jermone and Raphael’s Transfiguration
  • Visit the Sistine Chapel and St Peter’s Basilica to ogle three Michelangelo masterpieces including the Creation of Adam
  • Enjoy privileged fast-track access to the Vatican Museums through a reserved entranceway

Recent Photos of This Tour

What You Can Expect

Skip the Line: Vatican Museums Extended Art Tour Including Bramante Staircase

Admire the wealth of artwork that the Vatican has to offer!

Meet and greet the tour guide outside the Vatican Museums, a collection of galleries of classical and Renaissance art masterpieces, including the Sistine Chapel frescoes. Walk inside through a special reserved door without any waiting. This access is even faster than the priority lines.

Once inside, there are more than nine miles of art, so follow along with the guide who will point out the highlights and explain the story behind each work of art. A headset is included to hear the guide clearly.

Stop at the Vatican Pinacoteca art gallery, featuring some of the most influential paintings in the world like Caravaggio’s Deposition from the Cross, Da Vinci’s unfinished St. Jermone and Raphael’s Transfiguration.

See the hundreds of Roman busts and statues inside the Chiaramonti Museum, then roam the Octagonal Courtyard to see Apollo Belvedere, a celebrated marble sculpture and the Laocoon, one of the most famous ancient sculptures in the world.

One of the biggest thrills of the tour is a visit to the Bramante Staircase. It was once used by the popes and Vatican staff, but it is now rarely visited. Take the opportunity to get a photo of this beautiful spiral staircase. Then exit directly into the Gregorian Etruscan Museum to see the many bronze figurines and Etruscan tombs.

Finally, visit Raphael’s Rooms, four interconnected rooms with frescoes painted by Renaissance artist Raphael; the six-sectioned Gallery of Candelabra, with Roman copies of Hellenistic originals and some great second century candelabra, from Otricoli; the Gallery of Tapestries, featuring the drawings from many of Raphael’s pupils; and Gallery of Maps, on the west side of the Belvedere Courtyard featuring a series of painted topographical maps of Italy.

Go to the Sistine Chapel to see Michelangelo’s Creation of Adam and the Last Judgement and St. Peter’s Basilica to see Pietà, one of Michelangelo’s earlier sculptures depicting the body of Jesus on the lap of his mother Mary after the Crucifixion.

The tour ends just outside St. Peter’s Basilica.

Customer Reviews

Dale T

5 star rating: Highly Recommended November 2016

Our guide Vasco was super knowledgeable and friendly. He was an island of sanity in the involved labyrinth of the Vatican Museums. The quality of our information and the 15 minute in the staircase was worth the extra expenditure.

Timothy B

5 star rating: Highly Recommended October 2016

Great tour. Our guide Stephanie was extremely knowledgable in art and history. Everything in Rome was very busy. Also, recommend the walk up to the top of the dome at St. Peter's. It was not included but was another 8euro, very cool up top, great views.

SILVIA ANDREA F Argentina

5 star rating: Highly Recommended October 2016

Excellent!!

Krystel R

5 star rating: Highly Recommended August 2016

Very well-informed tour guide. Great tour!

Manon C

5 star rating: Highly Recommended August 2016

Exceptionnal, grandiose....

travelgirllec

5 star rating: Highly Recommended July 2016

If you are an art and history buff, you definitely want to do the extended tour! Our guide, Alessandra was awesome and it was so nice that we had a very small group of 11 people. A once in a lifetime opportunity that we highly recommend.

Renee P

5 star rating: Highly Recommended June 2016

Wow! Really good tour, didn and #39;t really realize how crowded it would be or how long it actually took to walk through the entire Vatican. The staircase was probably my favorite and the Sistine Chapel. This tour had everything.

kellylynncin

5 star rating: Highly Recommended June 2016

This tour was amazing!

Pratixa S

5 star rating: Highly Recommended June 2016

Our tour was excellent. Our guide had so much information and he was really was interesting and funny. The tour was long 5 hours but it was what we signed up for. I learnt a lot and it was breathtaking to see some of the painting and listen to the guide talk about the painters. The highlight was the maps in sisten chapel. Overall ,an excellent tour. Thank You!

Edwin T

5 star rating: Highly Recommended May 2016

A very good tour overall. Met by well organised reps. Knowledgeable and helpful guide. My main interest was the Bramante staircase and I was so pleased with the amount of time we were allowed there without any other groups. Our guide led us skilfully through the very crowded areas. A special experience.

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