Vatican Museums
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Our most recommended Vatican Museums Food & Drinks

Vatican: Skip-the-Line Vatican Museums Tour with Breakfast

1. Vatican: Skip-the-Line Vatican Museums Tour with Breakfast

Start your day at the Vatican early and skip the notoriously long ticket lines by following a special route through the museums that gets you to the Sistine Chapel just as it opens for the day. Enter before most of the crowd and spend a peaceful half-hour soaking up Michelangelo’s masterpiece along with stunning frescoes by other important Renaissance artists. Continue on to the Pinecone Courtyard for large buffet breakfast including hot and cold dishes, fruit juice, tea, and coffee. Once you’ve eaten your fill, head back into the museums for a tour of the most famous artifacts, including the Belvedere Torso, the Apollo Belvedere, the Laocoön Group, and the Raphael Rooms, widely considered to be among the most beautifully-frescoed interiors in the world. Visit the Gallery of the Candelabra with ancient Greek and Roman artworks. Learn about Raphael Sanzio at the Gallery of Tapestries, one of the most spectacular rooms of the museums.

Vatican Museums Early Entry Tour with Buffet Breakfast

2. Vatican Museums Early Entry Tour with Buffet Breakfast

Have the Vatican to yourself on this exclusive early morning tour that whisks you through closed doors for a buffet breakfast in the peaceful Pinecone Courtyard, before anyone else enters the museums. While the general public waits in line outside, feast on an Italian-American breakfast buffet of cooked-to-order eggs, meats, cheeses, muffins, croissants, fresh fruits, cereals, and even pancakes, flipped by the Vatican's pancake chef. Dining in the beautiful Pinecone Courtyard, alongside one of the Vatican Museums' most beautiful works of modern art, experience a level of tranquility rarely seen by Vatican visitors. Then follow your guide to explore the Vatican Museums. Still closed to the general public, the Museums are quieter now than throughout the rest of the day. With only 10 people per group, have time and space to really appreciate the art. See rooms such as the Hall of Maps, Gallery of the Tapestries, Gallery of the Candelabra and incredible Raphael Rooms. Your guide will bring works of art to life, pointing out things you would have missed on your own. Continue to the legendary Sistine Chapel. Then, skip the ticket lines to enter St. Peter’s Basilica. See the altar and marvel at Michelangelo’s La Pietà sculpture.

Rome: Squares, Vatican, & Colloseum Tour, Lunch & Transfers

3. Rome: Squares, Vatican, & Colloseum Tour, Lunch & Transfers

Discover the best of Rome on a private full-day tour. Get picked up at your doorstep and head to the legendary Colosseum, where your guide will be waiting for you. See the Roman Forum and the Palatine as your guide brings 3,000 years of Roman history to life. Continue your tour and drive to some of the most beautiful sights in Rome, including the Pantheon, Piazza Navona, the Spanish Steps, and the Trevi Fountain. After enjoying lunch at a traditional restaurant, your driver will pick you up and take you to Vatican City. Avoid the lines at the Vatican Museums and see masterpieces by the main Italian artists. Admire the most prominent collection of ancient Roman artworks. Wander through the Sistine Chapel, where you will marvel at Michelangelo’s extraordinary fresco, the Last Judgement. Finally, visit St. Peter’s Basilica, famous for its Renaissance architecture and for being the largest church in the world, before being dropped off back at your hotel. This experience might start with the Colosseum or with the Vatican, depending on tickets' availability and other variants. On Sundays and religious holidays, the Vatican is closed. An alternative tour runs on those days. Explore St. Peter's Square, the Castel Sant' Angelo area, and other marvelous sites like Capitoline Hill with your guide and driver. From the top, enjoy spectacular views over the Forum.

Rome: Vatican & Lunch at Pope's Summer Residence Day Tour

4. Rome: Vatican & Lunch at Pope's Summer Residence Day Tour

Start your 9-hour program with a bus ride to Castel Gandolfo, a secluded and charming town that’s home to the pope’s summer residence. Explore the pope’s private Barberini Gardens by mini-bus and with the assistance of an audio guide. The Papal Palace was recently opened to the public by Pope Francis. You’ll see the treasures of this extravagant yet intimate interior, including works by Bernini. Enjoy a break for lunch and some free time to explore the town before heading back to Rome. In the afternoon, begin a 3-hour tour of Vatican City at the Vatican Museums. With your priority access you’ll skip the lines, allowing more time to discover the great works of art. Continue to the Sistine Chapel, where your guide will point out amazing art including Michelangelo’s The Last Judgement – the largest fresco ever painted by a single person. The last stop on this walking tour of Vatican City is St. Peter’s Basilica, which is the most renowned work of Renaissance architecture.

Sistine Chapel, Vatican Gardens & Castel Gandolfo Day Tour

5. Sistine Chapel, Vatican Gardens & Castel Gandolfo Day Tour

Start your day bright and early as you meet your tour guide at the Vatican Museums. Skip the line and enter 45 minutes before the general public with your special access ticket. After going through a brief security check, proceed inside to begin your tour starting with the best galleries. Follow your art historian guide along the tour route which includes the Gallery of the Tapestries, the Gallery of the Candelabra, and the Gallery of the Maps.  Then, learn about the history and process Michelangelo used to paint the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel before entering to see it yourself. Continue to the Vatican Gardens, where only special tour groups are allowed to visit. With your exclusive Vatican Gardens tickets, breathe in the tranquil air of this mini paradise. After your Vatican Gardens tour, enter Vatican City’s only train station to board the train to Castel Gandolfo. Once the site of Emperor Domitian’s Villa, the Barberini Gardens boast beautifully-designed hedges situated amidst flowers, fountains and Ancient Roman ruins. Your guide will tell you stories about the history of the gardens and the many points of interest located within. Once you’ve explored the lush scenery of the Barberini Gardens, the tour will break for lunch (included with the tour). Sit down to a sumptuous spread of locally-sourced, organic Italian meats, cheeses, olive oil, tomatoes, and pasta. Then, have the opportunity to take a self-guided tour of the Papal Palace of Castel Gandolfo, the Pope’s summer residence. Now a museum open to the public, enjoy exploring the Palace’s many rooms, art galleries, and collection of cars driven by former popes. Use your round-trip train ticket to return to Vatican City and conclude your memorable experience.

Rome: Go City Explorer Pass - Choose 2 to 7 Attractions

6. Rome: Go City Explorer Pass - Choose 2 to 7 Attractions

Explore Rome at your own pace with the Go City Rome Explorer Pass. Choose from 2 to 7 attractions and tours from a list of over 30 options including the Colosseum, a hop-on hop-off bus tour, the Vatican Museums, the Sistine Chapel, and more. With a full 60 days to use your pass from your first attraction visit or tour, you'll have plenty of time to visit the Roman Forum and Palatine Hill, join a wine tasting by the Colosseum, enjoy a candlelit classical music concert, or go bike riding among ancient Roman ruins. Take advantage of great savings compared to buying individual attraction tickets and enjoy a complimentary digital guide packed with attraction information and instructions on booking your visits. To redeem, simply display your pass on your mobile device (or print it at home) at the ticket office or gate for free admission. Choose 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, or 7 attractions from the following (some of the activities may require reservations, check your digital guide for instructions): Cultural and Historical Sights • Colosseum, Roman Forum, and Palantine Hill with audio tour, hosted entry, and multimedia video • Vatican Museums and Sistine Chapel • St. Peter's Basilica Guided Tour • Borghese Gallery and city guide app • Castel Sant' Angelo with audio guide • Capitolini Museum with hosted entry • Altar of the Fatherland Panoramic View • Piazza Navona Underground • Altar of the Fatherland Panoramic View • Carcer Tullianum (Mamertine Prison) Other Tours and Experiences • Big Bus Rome Hop-on Hop-off 1-Day Classic Tour • Rome Catacombs Tour including transfer • Delicious Pasta Menu by Trevi Fountain • Best of Rome at Twilight • Wine tasting with a certified sommelier by the Colosseum • Colosseum Exterior VR Experience • Circus Maximus Virtual Reality Game • HiBike and Caracalla Baths - 3hrs • Ancient Via Appia Antica by Bike • The Three Tenors in Concert with Ballet - St. Paul's Church • HiBike and Circo Massimo Experience (3 hours) • Museo delle Cere (Wax Museum) • Welcome to Rome Show • Leonardo Da Vinci Experience • Vivaldi's Four Seasons Meets Bach's Masterpieces • Trevi District Underground: Small Aqueduct Domus • Vigamus - Video Game Museum • HiBike Rental (3 hours) • Candlelight Concert at the Waldensian Auditorium Attractions and tours are subject to change. Check your included digital guide for an up-to-date attraction list including opening times and instructions on how to access each attraction with your pass before you go. 

Rome: Vatican & Colosseum Moonlight Small Group Tour

7. Rome: Vatican & Colosseum Moonlight Small Group Tour

Visit two of Rome's must-see sites in true style with this combined small group tour. Meet your group and guide at the Vatican. Choose from either a 07:30 start, entering the museums at 08:00, 1-hour before the opening to the general public, or at 08:30. Either way, you will enter the Vatican bright and early and tour in a small group maximum of 22 persons. With your expert guide, cover the highlights of the Vatican Museums, Sistine Chapel and St. Peter's Basilica. The tour will last approximately 3-hours. Have the day free to explore before reconvening at the local tour operator office at 19:00. Here, you will be greeted with a traditional Italian aperitif of prosecco and local snacks. Get to know your small group (maximum 25 persons) and friendly guide before being administered with headsets and heading off to explore ancient Rome. Enjoy a walking tour of the ancient Roman ruins lining Via Fori Imperiali on both sides, as you walk up to the Colosseum. At the Colosseum, the guide will hand you over to a guide of the Colosseum and you will enter the Colosseum after it has closed to the general public. The atmosphere will be magical as the guide takes you to also see the restricted areas of the arena and the dungeons.

Full Day Tour Papal Audience and Vatican Museums With Lunch

8. Full Day Tour Papal Audience and Vatican Museums With Lunch

During the morning, you will be taken to St. Peter's Square to take a seat and enjoy a special religious moment. Pope Francesco will offer readings in several languages and pray with the faithfuls. At the end of the audience, you will enjoy a quick lunch and then continue your experience with a visit to the famous Vatican Museums with its classical sculpture galleries, tapestries and most significant paintings, collected in one of the most important museum in the world. Visit the famous Sistine Chapel and, through an exclusive access pass, enjoy the majesty of St. Peter's Basilica, the largest church in the whole Catholic Christian world, built on the tomb of the first pope in history next to the famous St. Peter's Square. The tour will conclude here.

Pope’s Summer Residence Tour with Lunch

9. Pope’s Summer Residence Tour with Lunch

Enjoy a unique half-day tour from Rome that will take you to the lovely town of Castel Gandolfo where you will visit the Papal Palace and its stunning landscaped gardens. Castel Gandolfo, built on the site of the legendary ancient settlement of Alba Longa, is one of Italy’s most picturesque towns and has been home to the Papal summer retreat since 1596. Situated in the Regional Park of the Castelli Romani, it enjoys splendid views over the beautiful Lake Albano, which you will be able to admire from the grounds of the Apostolic Palace. On this tour, you will be able to explore the up-to-now hidden gems of this glorious private residence with an audio-guide in the language of your choice. Following this, you will have the opportunity to see the gorgeously manicured Barberini Gardens and the impressive ruins of Emperor Domitian’s villa, before enjoying a lunch prepared with fresh produce from the palace farm! If you have not already done so, you will have the chance to add a tour of the Vatican Museums, Sistine Chapel and St Peter’s Basilica with your fantastic guide onto your experience, in which case, upon your return to Rome, you will be dropped off right outside the Vatican.

Happy Hour in the Vatican Museums

10. Happy Hour in the Vatican Museums

Experience a cultural adventure and discover the Vatican in another light. Start with a lovely Italian-style aperitif in the Pinecone courtyard before diving into the best of the Vatican with your guide.  From the courtyard you'll cross some of the 54 museum galleries, stopping by the gallery of tapestries, where you can admire unique needlework. See how the overall understanding of the world has changed throughout the centuries in the Gallery of Maps. Fall in love with Raphael's delicate hand and gaze in awe at his frescoes which decorate the papal apartments. Last but not least, enjoy the Sistine Chapel without the daytime heat and huge crowds. Give yourself the time to experience the star of the Vatican museums and explore the detailed frescoes that decorate the walls and ceiling of the chapel. Learn all about how Michelangelo painted the Last Judgment. He even incorporated a self portrait  see if you can find it.

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What people are saying about Vatican Museums

Very nice tour, perfectly organized with trained guides only the Vatican guide prepared but not very kind where we also had a bickering about being late due to queues and more because you started the tour in the explanations went more than necessary and noticed the delay of losing the train to Castel'Gandolfo blamed us Italians even with the firmness of the companion who replies that they were the first to arrive I'm sorry not to do so one has to take responsibility, explain the tour is impossible only to seeing a unique beauty advised everyone to try it to believe I end up with a word Spectacular.

I think this is the way to do it. We walked right in and later on there were massive line of people to get in. Breakfast was nothing to shout about, but it was there at that time in the morning and was more that enough! Our guide Dorianna (apology if the name spelled incorrectly) was a great knowledgeable lady with a wonderful sense of humour!

Our guide has incredible knowledge of her subject but her English was quite accented so a little difficult to understand.

Very convenient, especially since you don't have a line and you can set your own time.

Great breakfast. Brilliant guide ( Sara) first class tour