At a Glance Why You'll Love It
Tour Summary Get in the Know
The Only Way to See the Vatican Early Access
Want to ensure your Vatican experience is a memorable one? We've done all the legwork for you on our Vatican Early Access Tour! First, you'll enter to see the museum's breathtaking masterpieces one hour before the big bronze doors open to the general public, meaning that the premises will be filled with only a small fraction of the visitors pushing their way through the corridors later in the day. What's more, you won't be struggling to get noticed by your guide, or keep up with them.
On this tour, you'll be one of just 12 other guests, so you'll have more than the mic and earphones in common with your guide, getting real personalized attention and really connecting with the charms of one of the most visited art collections on Earth. Add this to the continental breakfast and helpful staff at our offices before your tour begins, and its easy to see why we've been ranked #1 on TripAdvisor since 2011.
The Sistine Chapel & More Free of Crowds
Once inside the Vatican Museums, it's straight to the main event – the Sistine Chapel. Gaze upon Michelangelo’s stupefying ceiling, Creation of Adam and The Last Judgment in awe, sharing the space with your group and a few others. Take your time – and savor each moment – because this is an experience you’ll never want to forget, as you nearly reach out and touch one of humankind's most astounding creative achievements.
Some 25,000 people visit this world-famous chapel every day, meaning that during peak season opening hours there are thousands crammed into this opulent yet tiny space. Michelangelo’s enigmatic frescoes are brimming with genius and symbolism, but they can go completely unnoticed if you're worried about losing your group, or where to put your feet. Give yourself the chance to see it the way Michelangelo intended, with a tour company that has our TripAdvisor pedigree.
More to the Vatican from Raphael to St. Peter's
After the Sistine Chapel, follow your guide back through the museums, savoring the finer details of the multitude of artworks. Some of the most famous and timeless master works can be found in the Vatican’s gigantic collection, founded by Pope Julius II in the early 16th century. Get a thorough look at the Lacoöon, Belvedere Apollo, dazzling Raphael Rooms and more with a captivating historic photograph at each stop from your expert guide.
The finale of this tour culminates in St. Peter's Basilica. Majestic and inspired, it is the perfect place to come full circle on the morning's itinerary. Every inch of this 240,000 square foot church is breathtaking, but our tour goes beyond the gold and splendor, revealing the true stories of fervor, innovation, faith and power. Feast your eyes on Michelangelo's Pietà and admire the stunning interior of the dome he designed, as well as Bernini's massive bronze baldachin sitting over the Pope's private alter directly above St. Peter's tomb.
What You'll See Along the Way
Upon entering the chapel, the visual cues are spellbinding. Covering 12,000 square feet, biblical stories inhabit almost every centimeter of space. Gaze upwards at Michelangelo’s ceiling, a masterful tour de force and cornerstone of High Renaissance art, to behold nine mystical depictions of stories from the Book of Genesis. His other masterpiece on the altar wall, The Last Judgment, foreshadows the Second Coming of Christ and the final eternal judgment by God of all humanity. Our early entry Vatican guided tours afford our customers the opportuity to experience this iconic chapel without the chaos and crowds.
Vatican Early Access Tour Reviews
What Our Customers Say...
Had an amazing group tour of the Vatican with Carlotta today! The information she provided was second to none, and her awesome sense of humor only added to the whole experience. We would 100% recommend any tour with What A Life without hesitation.
As an added bonus, Carlotta shared her favorite restaurant she eats at with the group, which we then visited for lunch... the food was out of this world! A big thanks to both Carlotta and What A Life Tours for the outstanding experience!
Our tour guide, Mario, had encyclopedic knowledge of the history of Rome, Vatican City, and the Museums, pointing out so many details about sculptures and works of art. He was great fun and really wanted us to make the most of our visit. Mario and the team far exceeded my high expectations, I highly recommend taking this tour if you want to deeply appreciate the Vatican's many wonders.
This is the way to go see that Vatican. Carlotta was our guide for the tour, she was fantastic. Once we checked in for the tour we were greeted pastries and Italian coffee while we are preparing for the EARLY morning tour, which is the way to go. The crowds can be overwhelming!!!! Picking “ What a life tours” is a bullseye.
We were fortunate enough to take the tour with Martina and if I could provide a 6 star review I would. When I booked this there was suppose to be three of us in the group, but one of our friends couldn't travel last minute, i guess I truly didn't realize it was a small group tour as in just us.... PERFECT With Martina's excellent command of the English language and knowledge of the Vatican, Sistine Chapel and Italy in general it made the tour that much more enjoyable. We were into the Vatican early much in advance of the larger crowds and that made the possibility to enjoy some of the areas without being pushed by other tourist and to be able to appreciate paintings, sculptures, with her knowledge. If you're in the market for truly private one on one tour of the Vatican this is the way to go, and if you can specifically ask for Martina, then you've hit the jackpot
We spend the morning enjoying and learning abt the Sistine Chapel from Elaine Adams, a wonderful English speaking guide. I had wanted this experience for years and it far exceeded my expectations. Elaine is very knowledgeable, not too serious and got us thru security and lines in record time. We’d highly recommend “What a Life Tours” and Elaine.
Increased security measures at the Vatican Museums may cause some lines to form for tours with skip the line entry. Customers will still enter with priority over general admission ticket holders.
A dress code is enforced at some sites on this tour, namely the Sistine Chapel and St. Peter's Basilica. Please make sure that both your shoulders and knees are covered.
Due to venue restrictions at the Vatican Museums we are only able to accept persons requiring wheelchairs on our private Vatican tours.