Panoramic Vatican Tour: Sistine Chapel, St. Peter’s & Guided Dome Climb

143 reviews

5 hours

Max 20

Why take this tour?


  • See St. Peter's, climb the dome, visit the Vatican Museums and Sistine Chapel all in one morning
  • Take the St. Peter's Dome elevator up the first 320 steps to the terraces
  • Visit the Vatican Museums with skip-the-line access
  • Savor the splendor of the Sistine Chapel, Raphael Rooms, Bernini's Baldachin, and the Pieta
  • Enjoy one of the best views in Rome from the St. Peter's cupola
  • Sites Visited
  • St. Peter's Basilica
  • Dome of St. Peter's Basilica
  • Michelangelo's Pieta
  • Bernini's Baldachin
  • St. Peter's Square
  • Sistine Chapel
  • Raphael Rooms
  • Belvedere Courtyard with Ancient Greek & Roman sculptures
  • Gallery of the Candelabra
  • Gallery of the Maps
  • Gallery of the Tapestries
  • Tour Includes
  • Skip-the-line Vatican Museums tickets
  • Pre-reserved St. Peter’s Basilica tickets
  • Elevator access to St. Peter's Basilica Dome terrace
  • Expert Walks tour guide
  • Headsets

Take it easy on our skip-the-line Vatican tour

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Verified Customer Reviews

Overall Rating
4.5 /5
based on 143 reviews
Rating summary by category
Latest reviews
The tour was good, especially the climb of the dome at St Peters. We ended up walking all the way up to the top of the dome as the queue for the elevator was long - this could be difficult for a less able person. Due to the time booked to enter the Vatican Museums we had just 10 minutes in the basilica itself - this was disappointing. It was good to be able to continue our visit of the museums in our own time after the end of the tour.
Juliet · May 21, 2023 · United Kingdom · 45 to 54 years
Siri was an awesome tour guide, the sights are amazing and even more so when explained by someone passionate about there job
Robert · May 13, 2023 · United States · Male · 55 to 64 years
Ciri and Massimo were amazing and knowledgeable. The two tours were fantastic and we highly recommend.
Kelly · May 13, 2023 · United States · Female · 55 to 64 years
Excellent tour. Very educational. The guide was funny and knowledgeable.
Emily · May 12, 2023 · United States · Female · 45 to 54 years
Excellent, well-structured tour with a great guide. Of all the places I visited in Italy, the Vatican was *the* most crowded but the guide did an incredible job of making it as smooth as possible. The Basilica does not offer skip-the-line access (for any tour), so there is more time spent waiting in line than other venues, but the 5-hour time window accounts for this and the guide very expertly used our time in line productively by telling us about the Vatican and Basilica. The tour includes access to the elevator to the Basilica terrace, which is another line to stand in but honestly was a better option than climbing the 300 steps to terrace. From the terrace, you have the option to take the 200+ steps up to the cupola which is...a lot, but really worth it (...and another reason to take the elevator for the first 300 steps!). The cupola clime is between the inner and outer domes of the Basilica, so it's kind of narrow and at a weird angle, but there are some built-in spaces where you can step aside. And, when you get to the top of the cupola, there are absolutely incredible views. From there, we went to the Vatican museum, where we did have skip-the-line access and entry was pretty straightforward. The museum was incredibly crowded. I was thankful to have a guide because they were able to highlight key things and we went through. If I were on my own, I don't think I would have been able to stop and read the descriptions as I normally would at a museum because there were just so many people there. The highlight, of course, is the Sistine Chapel at the end of the museums. Photos and talking are not permitted in the chapel, but our guide gave us a very thorough walk through before we went in so we knew what we were looking at. After the Sistine Chapel, the guide gave us each the option of going back into the museum to go through at our own pace or to go back into the Basilica to go through at our own pace (with the dome climb, we didn't have have the much time inside the Basilica itself). The guide helped us get back into our respective venues before ending the tour. Personally, I particularly appreciated having the extra time to walk around in the Basilica itself. Just an absolutely incredible monument. Overall, I really well organized tour in a difficult setting with a great knowledgeable and clever guide. Would definitely recommend this! Also: the Vatican has its own post office where you can buy post cards and stamps -- but the stamps only work if mailed from within the Vatican, so bring a pen with you!
Sarah · May 10, 2023 · United States · Non Binary · 35 to 44 years

Meeting Point

Meeting Point Map ⟶

Meeting Point

Piazza della Città Leonina, 5 (Caffè Leonina). Please meet your guide in front of the cafe. They will be holding a green Walks sign. The closest metro stop is Ottaviano

Please meet 15 minutes prior to the tour start time.


Is this tour accessible for wheelchairs, strollers or for those with mobility impairments?
Unfortunately due to the nature of this tour it is not suitable for guests with mobility impairments, or for wheelchairs or strollers. Please contact the Guest Experience team at [email protected] or call +39 068-596-0143 (Italy) or 888-683-8670 (USA) to make alternative arrangements.
Does St. Peter's Basilica have a dress code?
Yes, although you aren't expected to dress as formally as if you were attending a mass. Unless you actually are attending a mass. The most important rule is NO SHORTS, that applies to both men and women. Shoulders must also be covered, so no tank tops. Small bags and umbrellas are permitted inside but large bags have to be checked at the entrance, next to the official audio-guides desk.
I am in a wheelchair/have a mobility impairment. Can I take this tour?
The Vatican Museums are equipped with elevators for wheelchair access, but they are not located on the group tour route. If you have a mobility impairment and/or use a wheelchair please contact our customer service department at [email protected] and we will be happy to work out a suitable alternative.
I want to take a selfie in the Raphael Rooms, can I bring my selfie stick?
No. Selfie sticks are strictly forbidden inside the Vatican Museums, along with flash photography. However, visitors are allowed to take non-flash photographs anywhere besides the Sistine Chapel.
What items can I NOT take into the Vatican Museums
Knives, scissors, and other cutting tools must also be deposited in the cloakroom as a precaution against harming the artwork inside. No hammers, either, as one was once used to smash Michelangelo's Pietá. This probably goes without saying, but firearms are also strictly prohibited for visitors within the Vatican Museums and you can't check them in the cloakroom.
I've heard the Vatican has a strict dress code. What should I wear?
It does, but it isn't anything too formal. The big rule is to make sure your shoulders and knees are covered - that applies to both men and women. Also remember that shorts of any length are not allowed at all in St. Peter's Basilica so if you are visiting both the Vatican Musuems and the Basilica, wear trousers or a long skirt. Occasionally visitors get away with wearing a bit less but it’s best not to risk it. Hats are also not allowed. Walks cannot be held responsible for guests who are refused entrance due to inappropriate dress so please remember to cover up.
IMPORTANT: Can I bring a bag into the Vatican Museums?
Yes, as long as it's within a certain size. You cannot bring any bag, backpack suitcase or container larger that 40cm x 35cm x 15cm into the Vatican Museums. In fact, size limits apply to all items; because of the sheer number of people that visit the Museums, space is at a premium. You can’t enter with medium to large umbrellas, any umbrellas with spiked tips, camera tripods, signage (apart from signs used by certified guides) or walking sticks – except those required by disabled visitors. All of these items can be left in the cloakroom, which is located at the entrance to the Museums. This means that you will need to walk 15 - 20 minutes back here after you finish your tour at St Peter's Basilica. On our afternoon tours you may need to leave the tour early to collect your bag before the cloakroom closes.
Why can't I take photos inside the Sistine Chapel?
When the chapel was restored in 1990 the biggest donors to the project (donating a whopping $4.2 million) were a Japanese television network. In return, they received exclusive rights to photograph and film inside and quickly banned any professional photographers from taking pictures. Although they didn't mind if tourists took photos, the Vatican guards decided to enforce the rule on everyone because it was impractical to differentiate between a normal visitor and who was a professional photographer. The Japanese network's exclusive contract has expired now but the rule persists. If you try to take any images in the Chapel Vatican, security is authorized to make you delete them.

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