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Sistine Chapel Private Viewing Small-Group Tour of the Vatican's Secret Rooms

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Lazio, Italy
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icon3 hours  (Approx.)
Mobile ticket
iconOffered in: English

Overview

This isn’t just any private tour of the Vatican and Sistine Chapel — on this Viator VIP tour, you’ll have permission to visit rooms of the Vatican Museums that are typically closed to the public, plus you’ll go inside the Sistine Chapel after hours, when it’s only open for your small group limited to 15 people. This unprecedented opportunity to gaze at Michelangelo’s famous ceiling fresco without the usual crowds is the ultimate way to experience this iconic site. In addition to secret sites like the Room of Gold, you’ll also visit public galleries like Raphael’s Rooms.
  • 3-hour small-group VIP tour of the Vatican Museums including skip-the-line entry
  • Enjoy exclusive access through a reserved entranceway to skip all the lines
  • Visit hidden corridors and secret Vatican rooms such as the Niccoline Chapel or the Bramante Staircase
  • See top Vatican attractions like the Apollo Belvedere statue, Raphael’s Rooms and Gallery of the Candelabra
  • Take a rare, private tour of the Sistine Chapel after its doors are closed to the public
  • Hear commentary from your guide inside the Sistine Chapel, which is normally forbidden
  • Experience the Vatican as a VIP insider with this Viator exclusive tour
  • Small-group tour limited to a maximum of 15 travelers

Why Travelers Choose This Tour

This VIP tour unlocks secret rooms not normally open to the public.
Vatican skip-the-line tours are in such demand that even the priority-access lines are long. To ensure you won’t spend time waiting in queues, your Viator VIP tour provides admission through a reserved entrance, plus gives you access to secret rooms unlocked by the Vatican guard who accompanies you. It’s a rare chance to see the hallowed halls of the Vatican the way that only dignitaries and royalty typically do.

The nature of this exclusive tour means that the itinerary changes each time based on the availability of the secret rooms, but most tours include the Bramante Staircase (Scala del Bramante) on the corner of the Pope’s Palace. You’ll likely also see the lavish Room of Gold (Sala degli Ori), home to an impressive collection of papal jewelry and precious Etruscan jewels, and the Niccoline Chapel (Cappella Niccolina), a room that compares to the Sistine Chapel with its gold brought back from the travels of Christopher Columbus and its frescoes by Fra Angelico, a Renaissance painter who pre-dates Michelangelo.

Additionally, your tour includes artwork like the Apollo Belvedere statue and rooms seen on regular Vatican Museums tours such as Raphael’s Rooms, the Pinecone Courtyard and the public area of the pope’s apartments. As you explore, listen to stories from your guide about the Vatican’s renowned art collection and scandalous history of power and treachery.

Finally, arrive at the Sistine Chapel, where you have private access after the chapel closes to the general public. Talking in the chapel is typically prohibited, but during your 30 minutes inside your guide is allowed to tell you about Michelangelo’s two famous works as you look at them—his wall fresco The Last Judgment and his legendary ceiling fresco, The Creation of Adam, which depicts scenes from the Book of Genesis.

See the Itinerary for a full list of the Vatican rooms and sights you can expect to see.

Itinerary

Classic Vatican sites:
• Apollo Belvedere
• Chiaramonti Museum
• Sistine Chapel, home to artwork by Michelangelo including The Creation of Adam and The Last Judgment
• Gallery of Maps
• Gallery of the Candelabra
• Gallery of the Tapestries
• Lacoon
• Pinecone Courtyard
• Raphael's RoomsSecret rooms (subject to change):
• Bramante Staircase (Scala del Bramante)
• Niccoline Chapel (Cappella Niccolina)
• Room of Gold (Sala degli Ori)
Itinerary
Stop At:  
Sistine Chapel
Admission Ticket Included
Stop At:  
Vatican Museums
Admission Ticket Included
Stop At:  
City Wonders
Admission Ticket Free
Stop At:  
Vatican City
Admission Ticket Free
Stop At:  
City Wonders
Admission Ticket Free
Stop At:  
Stanze di Raffaello
Admission Ticket Included
Stop At:  
Sphere within a Sphere
Admission Ticket Free

Traveler Photos

Reviews

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586 Reviews
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Reviews by Viator travelers
star-5
Fantastic tour, fantastic guide
eholzi
, Dec 2019
This was the best tour of our trip to Italy. This tour was well worth the money. We have friends who did a different tour and were squeezed into the Sistine chapel so tightly they were shoulder to shoulder with the other tourists. We were thrilled to be in the chapel with only 6 other people. Our guide Gigi was incredibly knowledgeable about every piece of art we saw. He was engaging and fun.
star-5
Viator VIP:Sistine Chapel Private Viewing
hilariomontes04
, Dec 2019
I loved the tour. Sev was a great historian of the Vatican and it’s history. Having a small group really added to the VIP experience and not the crowd that I was used to. Will definitely do it again!!!
star-5
Wonderful experience
Caroline R
, Dec 2019
Although the weather was bad, a complete down pour of rain, the experience in the Vatican Museums and the Sistine Chapel were amazing and such a memorable experience. Doranna was excellent. I felt special going into areas others were not allowed access. Alone in the Sistine Chapel allowed for a true connection to art and spirit.
star-5
Definitely worth the additional cost!
Ody21
, Dec 2019
"Gigi" our tour guide was very insightful and entertaining, worth requesting if possible. But the most important aspect of this small group tour is to have quiet time to reflect and really appreciate the art and meaning of the Sistine Chapel. Throw in the expedited entry and access to some areas not available during the standard tours, and the tour was definitely worth the additional cost. If you are a traveler who prefers to "do it once, and do it right", this is the tour!
star-4
The only way to see the Sistine Chapel and Vatican Museums
RosieNOLA_RN
, Nov 2019
This tour was really good--our tour guide, Alessandro, began the tour while the Vatican museums was still packed, to see many views of the area. Beautiful. Most of the time, it was just our small group of 9 people in the Vatican, but other stragglers from earlier in the day were still there--but very manageable. Only our small tour group was in the Sistine Chapel, and it was much appreciated. We were not rushed during this tour. Alessandro was well-versed in the artists, the works, and the Sistine Chapel. We are glad to have experience the Vatican Museums and Sistine Chapel in such a special way. I highly recommend this tour.
star-5
14 People alone in the Sistine Chapel.... What else can you say....
Scenic713375
, Oct 2019
The tour starts in the Vatican Museum. You start by visiting various parts of the museum and visiting area that are part of every other tour out there. At this point I was thinking to myself "why did we pay so much for this tour?" Then we are directed to an area that is outside the normal viewing areas. This happens several times where we are directed to areas that are not open to the general public and you get to learn about some of the other history that is NOT part of a normal tour. This happens on several occasions. The highlight of the tour is the Sistine Chapel, we are directed into the Chapel as the museum/chapel is closing. Then the security guards close the chapel and everyone is directed out and you are left with your fellow tour members and the guide. We only had 14 of us total. We spent the next 15 minutes or so in silence taking it all in.... Then our guide starts to explain everything. Speaking of our guide he was very knowledgeable and passionate. The tour was excellent and I would highly recommend it. I know the price is high... but the time in the Chapel in silence is worth every penny.
star-5
great experience, very good guide that explained everything in just enough detail
OldTiredTraveler
, Oct 2019
this was a great way to see the Vatican Museum and the Sistine Chapel, and to see areas that you would never see without this guided tour. Of course our specific guide was excellent, Sal. The name of the tour agency that you end up meeting with has a different name that Viator, which is a little confusing, but they were very organized and helpful in getting us started. the staff was friendly and considerate. while it was not inexpensive, i believe it is worth it or you end up looking at a lot of history that you dont really understand without the guide. Also they know how to key in on the most important areas - and it is still three hours long. we loved it.
star-5
Hard to rate....
Sharron N
, Oct 2019
Words are inadequate. ..astonishing, amazing, emotional, you get the picture. If you get a chance, this is THE tour to take. The guide was knowledgeable, respectful and made you feel like you were a part of a much bigger picture. Nothing prepares you for the overwhelm of sitting in the quiet of the Sistine Chapel, tears unashamedly streaming down your face, and gazing in absolute awe. Of you're quibbling about the cost I assure you it's worth every penny and then some. Thank you for an experience we will never forget.
star-5
Sistine Chapel with Salvatore
parrcatherine863
, Oct 2019
Salvatore was delightful and knowledgeable! He took special care of his older clients, and he also had a great sense of humor! We were lucky to have him as a guide
star-5
Best Sistine Chapel tour
Charles M
, Oct 2019
This tour walked in front of very long lines and straight into the museum. Ended in the Sistine Capel with the super knowledgable guide and 14 others. Guide was permitted to explain everything. Not like most visits that are body to body.

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