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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

Recent Photos of This Tour

What You Can Expect

Viator VIP: Sistine Chapel Private Viewing and Small-Group Tour of the Vatican's Secret Rooms

Admire the Art of the Vatican on your exclusive VIP tour!

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.


Customer Reviews


5 star rating: Highly Recommended November 2016

Well worth the price! We got to see many things that the public doesn't including the Bramante staircase. Great tour guide.

dheaberlin United States of ... 

5 star rating: Highly Recommended November 2016

Very unusual to have 45 minutes after hours in the Sistine Chapel with only 16 others in our tour. Our guide was allowed to describe everything in depth which is a complete opposite of the guide not even being allowed to talk during normal hours. Tour of the Pope's quarters was outstanding. Our guide was excellent and very knowledgeable.

Peta P

5 star rating: Highly Recommended November 2016

The Sistine Chapel after hours WOW. only about 13 people in our group. The Chapel without the great crowds is wonderful to see. I'm not so sure about the secret rooms though because I have done an ordinary Sistine Chapel tour in the past, and I saw the so called Secret rooms before So, although this cost a lot of money, its well worth it just to spend 20 minutes in the Chapel without crowds - however, the Secret Rooms bit, is a bit of a fib.

Karen A

5 star rating: Highly Recommended November 2016

Beyond our expectations. Our tour guide, Dorianna, was extremely knowledgeable and sweet!

Joseph C

5 star rating: Highly Recommended November 2016

This was a once in a lifetime experience. Having been to the Sistine Chapel before and doing the regular program Going in with the masses This is a totally different experience. When you go on the regular tour you get 5 minutes in the chapel with 500 People jammed in and guards yelling at you to keep quiet. No pictures either. This tour we got over 30 minutes with only 12 ppl in the chapel. Got to roam around and had the place to ourselves, also got to take plenty of pictures. That alone is worth the . The rest of the tour was good but the Sistine Chapel private visit is what it's all about.

soconnell United States of ... 

5 star rating: Highly Recommended November 2016

Incredible. Definitely worth spending the extra money for the private viewing and small group tour. Guide was extremely knowledgeable and personable.

David I

5 star rating: Highly Recommended October 2016

Everything was amazing. Even during the off season the lines are out of control long. This bypassed everything. Our guide was incredible. He had encyclopedic knowledge of the most minute details about the Vatican, the secret rooms and the Sistine Chapel. Seeing the Sistine Chapel without the crowds was priceless. Well worth the price.

John U

5 star rating: Highly Recommended October 2016

Our host was filled with interesting insights into the art and history of the Vatican Museum and Sistine Chapel. This tour was the highlight of an amazing two weeks in Italy.

Eric R

5 star rating: Highly Recommended October 2016

This is one of the best tours of my life anywhere. I mean that. Shannon was a joy to listen to with a slight southern Alabama/Italian drawl. She was quick in the accessing of the areas we were to see, Obviously knew her subjects of discussion very well. The Sistine chapel with the quiet of only twelve other people and two guards was a highlight of my Italy tour. We also saw the secret Vatican rooms and the Raphael rooms by the great contemporary of Michelangelo. I cannot recommend this tour well enough. Overlook the cost and realize that you will see what very few others have seen or ever will see.

Donald C

5 star rating: Highly Recommended October 2016

An absolute necessity for any trip to Rome! I have been to the Sistine Chapel on two other occasions and this was by far the most enjoyable and informative way to see this most famous of locations.

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