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5 hours plus a break
Our Vatican in a day tour is a fascinating journey into the history and art of the past
This special in-depth tour provides the best experience of the Sistine Chapel, the Pinacoteca, the Vatican Museums and Saint Peter's Basilica giving you the time to discover, learn and absorb the beauty and the meaning of great artworks housed in the Vatican City. There is only one route that brings you to the Sistine Chapel, passing through courtyards and palaces containing one of the best art collections in all the world. Don't rush through them; you'll be captivated by these extraordinary masterpieces and their intricate details, such as the eyes of a statue or frescoes on a ceiling.
Sistine Chapel Tour: Meet a Genius
Whoever explores the Sistine Chapel through the eyes of Michelangelo, whoever reads in it his thoughts and sentiments, encounters a genius. Learn who Michelangelo was, how he lived and what he thought. Discover step by step how he learned to master the fresco technique, and how his working practices and designs changed according to his inspiration even as he painted the chapel. Our guides will accompany you into the greatest commissions of the Italian Renaissance; together we'll relive the environment of the Florence of the Medici and Rome's Papal court, where Michelangelo created his masterpieces. Appreciate the figures of Jonah, Adam, Eve, Noah and thousands of others on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel and in the Last Judgement. Discover why these figures were choosen by Michelangelo and the incredible stories they tell us. Understand how and why these frescoes redefined not only art, but even the way in which we look at the world around us.
The Raphael Rooms: Enter into the Courts of the Italian Renaissance
This was a period of amazing innovation, and the great characters of the Renaissance completely revolutionised our understanding of the world. The printing press, the geographic maps that Columbus used to help him reach the Americas, the dawning of modern science, a new conception of architecture, art and the sense of beauty (a concept frequently demonized in the Middle Ages), all these were their creations. The frescoes of the Raphael rooms perfectly depict the world of the contemporary courts that governed the course of this new world and where the great geniuses of the age lived and worked.The cultured conversations fueled by the wine of sumptuous banquets, the statues brought to light by a frenzied passion for excavations, new fashions, and above all new ways of thinking and living, are marvellously recreated by Raphael with the perfect touch of his graceful brush. On this Vatican group tour we will have the opportunity to experience this amazing world in the flesh. There's an entire world to discover here, a world of which we ourselves are the children.
Vatican Museums Tour: Stories of Art and History
Some of the the most important works that we will discover on our group tour of the Vatican, such as timeless Greek masterpieces like the Laocoon, the Belvedere Torso and the Apollo Belvedere, were excavated at the time of Michelangelo and Raphael; the great Renaissance artists studied and admired them in the same architectural context in which they are preserved today, and the artworks that they created are the fruit of their careful study. Following in their footsteps, you'll pass through the Pinecone courtyard, the Belvedere courtyard and the tapestry galleries in the company of a guide capable of recreating the climate of the epoch - allowing you to appreciate the Raphael Rooms and the Sistine Chapel in their historical context.
The Pinacoteca (Picture Gallery): Leonardo da Vinci, Caravaggio and Raphael's Last Painting
Some of the finest paintings of the Vatican Museums are collected in the Pinacoteca, still ignored by most tours. On our extended Vatican Tour you will explore this tranquil part of the Museums, appreciating the explosive force of Leonardo's Saint Jerome and the spectacular realism of Caravaggio's Deposition, an artist of absolute and ungovernable genius. We will also encounter Raphael's Transfiguration, a work that would be his last when, struck down by a terrible fever, he died at the height of his fame at the tender age of 37. To learn more about the masterpieces of the Picture Gallery, check out our guide to 5 Highlights of the Vatican Pinacoteca.
St. Peter's Basilica tour: The Story of Faith
From the Sistine Chapel we will directly enter St. Peter's Basilica, without having to wait in line. This part of our Vatican tour will bring us to the heart of the Christian faith, and along the way we will discover an incredible collection of relics and religious tokens that have accumulated here over the course of nearly 2,000 years at the site of St. Peter's tomb. Our Vatican group tour is optimized to allow you to experience these amazing objects in their original context. At the same time you will have the chance to admire and understand enchanting works of art such as Michelangelo's Pietà, whose tender intimacy moves all who gaze upon it. St. Peter's is also home to the masterpieces of Bernini, the greatest genius of the Italian Baroque, and the spectacular square he designed to lead up to the basilica dazzles with astounding optical effects. Crowds of devoted faithful have gathered for centuries to celebrate the most important events of Christianity, from the election of new popes to solemn masses. History seems to be alive in this beautiful place, and it's the perfect spot to conclude our fascinating Vatican group tour itineraries.
The Basilica of St.Peter's may be subject to unscheduled closings and late openings for religious ceremonies. Because these are often last-minute for security reasons, we do not have time to notify our guests. We will provide you with a complete experience by exploring the Vatican Museums in more detail. For this reason we will not provide any refunds.
Get the full picture of Rome’s cultural heritage by pairing your Vatican tour with our Immersive Colosseum tour, and explore the majesty of the ancient empire.
Near the entrance to the Vatican Museums. You will receive full details, with a map and photo, on booking
The Vatican Museums are very large and contain numerous steps and stairways. Wear comfortable shoes and bring plenty of water
Our guides are fluent in English and have a contagious passion for Rome's inspiring cultural heritage. Experts in their fields, they will immerse you in the hidden histories and intriguing lives of history's great protagonists. So much to see, so easy to miss out: with the help of our guides, visit the most absorbing sites and uncover the stories that have changed the world. Don't miss this fascinating journey!