Home > Vatican Tours > Vatican Best-of-the-Best Small Group Tour

Best Skip the Line Vatican Tour

with Sistine Chapel & St. Peter's Basilica

Overall rating:
Vatican Best-of-the-Best Small Group Tour Overall rating: ★★★★★ 4.9 based on 12 reviews.
5 1
Group size: Max 12 Language: English Duration: 3 hrs Start Time: 9:00 AM

2020 travellers' choiceBook the top-rated Vatican Tour and skip all lines! See the best of the Vatican Museums with a local official tour guide. Get straight inside with skip-the-line access to see a host of treasures including the Sistine Chapel and St. Peter’s Basilica, all with enlightening storytelling from a passionate guide to putting you front and center at Rome’s premier collection of artistic masterpieces. Groups of 12 people or fewer!

If you want an early start to avoid crowds, we do offer this Early Morning Vatican Tour with breakfast included!

At a Glance Why You’ll Love It

best skip the line vatican tour
Skip-the-line access means you’ll have more time to explore millennia of art and history within these hallowed walls without waiting in the long general admission lines.
This express itinerary takes you straight to what you want to see most with the Sistine Chapel, Gallery of Maps, St. Peter’s Basilica*, and Michelangelo’s Pietà.
In small groups of only 12 people, you can immerse yourself in your guide’s expert storytelling and satisfy every curiosity without feeling lost in the crowd.

Tour Summary Get in the Know

The Best of the Vatican In Under 3 Hours

Dive into the Vatican’s must-see attractions with the highlights you absolutely can’t leave Rome without. Luckily, they’re all on a straight shot to the Sistine Chapel and St. Peter’s Basilica, but you’ll still be in awe of the immense treasure trove you’ll find along the way. This tour has been specifically designed to get you inside as quickly as possible with skip-the-line entry and move through the collection without hitting the bottlenecks. You’ll have a passionate Vatican expert with you all the way for a true insider’s perspective, and in groups of only 12 guests or fewer, both you and the priceless works of art will get the attention you deserve.

This is hands down the perfect tour for families traveling with small children or teens, people who “don’t do” museum tours, or those who have limited time and want to see the Eternal City in less than an eternity. Whatever the case may be, you’ll walk away with a deep understanding of the rich history and vibrant masterpieces housed inside the Vatican’s walls.

Shortcut to the Sistine Chapel The Direct Route

Return to a time when Michelangelo and Raphael were rivaling Renaissance geniuses, and examine timeless art and the progressive ideas that changed the face of western civilization. You’ll be led on an enlightening discovery of what happened, exactly where the events took place. As you wander the vastness of courtyards and open-air sculpture galleries, you’ll no doubt be struck by the dazzling Gallery of Maps and Pinecone Courtyard, brimming with frescoes, sculptures, tapestries, and more. Your guide will create a rich experience, summoning historic personalities and leaking the backstories on the artworks.

The buildup can only lead to the Sistine Chapel, and you’re sure to sigh upon entering. Michelangelo’s ceiling frescos are one of the most incredible creative achievements ever, and to think he considered himself a sculptor. You’ll see the crown jewels of this four-walled masterpiece, The Creation of Adam and The Last Judgment, summing up the biblical history of humankind in vivid, living color. Michelangelo dedicated 9 years of his life to the tasks, and when you see his hidden self-portrait you’ll know how he felt afterward. Your guide will have provided context on this and more as you take precious time to explore.

Splendors of St. Peter’s Without the Lines

This tour winds down with a bang inside St. Peter’s Basilica, where you’ll witness the incomparable grandeur of its mosaics, golden ceilings, gigantic statues, and the spectacular dome. Optical illusions will be unveiled and history will unfold as we escort you to Bernini’s bronze Baldachin and the chair of St. Peter himself. Last but not least, we will stop by the Pietà, one of the cornerstone masterpieces of the Renaissance. Learn what led Michelangelo to defile one of his most prized sculptures and the reason he modeled the Virgin Mary to appear the same age as her son.

While some may say that you’d need a lifetime to fully explore the Vatican, we know that our guests don’t have that kind of time on their hands. With skip-the-line access to all sights visited and an insider expert leading the way, you’ll leave your Vatican adventure feeling enlightened and still have time to see the rest of the Eternal City.

What you’ll See Along the Way

Pinecone Courtyard
Belvedere Apollo
Laocoön and His Sons
Belvedere Torso
Round Room
Greek Cross Hall
Gallery of Candelabra
Gallery of Tapestries
Gallery of Maps
Sistine Chapel
St. Peter’s Square
St. Peter’s Basilica
Michelangelo's Pietà
Bernini's Baldachin
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Tour Highlights

  • Pinecone Courtyard
  • Belvedere Apollo
  • Laocoön and His Sons
  • Belvedere Torso
  • Round Room
  • Greek Cross Hall
  • Gallery of Candelabra
  • Gallery of Tapestries
  • Gallery of Maps
  • Sistine Chapel
  • St. Peter’s Square
  • St. Peter’s Basilica
  • Michelangelo’s Pietà
  • Bernini’s Baldachin


  • Skip-the-line access to Vatican Museums
  • Skip-the-line access to St. Peter’s Basilica
  • Expert English-speaking tour guide
  • A small group of 12 or fewer
  • All tickets and reservations
  • Headsets to hear the guide clearly

Vatican Best-of-the-Best Tour

What Our Customers Say…

Vatican Best-of-the-Best Small Group Tour Overall rating: ★★★★★ 4.9 based on 12 reviews.
5 1

The Best!

We all enjoyed our tour with your group this morning. Elaine is THE BEST guide we have had whilst travelling. Her knowledge and story telling is exceptional, witty and engaging all whilst being very professional. She kept the tour moving at a good pace without leaving us feeling rushed. We wish Elaine all the best with her future! Thanks for a great look at the Vatican.
- Angela, Piper and Shanaye

Thank you What A Life!

Family of 4, couple with 2 children aged 12 and 9. Our tour guide Mateo was the best guide we've ever had. His knowledge was broad and he took his time explaining the most important aspects of the tour. We were in a small group of 9 which was great. Mateo was focused on giving us the best experience possible. Totally value for money and beating the queues was very useful indeed. I thoroughly recommend this tour operator, all staff were very welcoming.
- Marta N

So much to see!

First and foremost, our tour guide Mario, is the best! He’s so smart and eloquent. He taught our group so much during our time together. His style is informative and entertaining. You can’t help but leave this tour a more intelligent and thoughtful version of yourself. He was great at timing the pace of our tour with the others so that we were able to maximize our time without interruption from the other groups.
- Addison B

Great tour full of knowledge and passion

I highly recommend this tour in Rome. I want to thank Matteo, who was our guide, for the great experience he gave us. He is very passionate about arts and history. The group was small which was a huge plus so you could better listen and interact with the guide. The agency’s staff were professional and nice.
- Shoaib


Ana was really genial, passionate and hugely informative. I enjoyed Anas attention to detail and eye for what really mattered. Length was perfect. I loved the tour thank you!
- Sarah D

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