10. Vatican Small Group Morning Tour with Secret Room Access
Meet your guide in front of Caffé Vaticano, just outside the Vatican Museums, and join a small group of no more than 6 people. In this intimate group, you can easily make your way through the museums and experience the sites and artifacts up-close. With the personalized attention of your guide, you are free to engage and ask all the questions you like.
Thanks to a new partnership in 2022, you can enjoy first entry into the Museums, reserved by only a handful of other tour operators. This special entry and tour are designed to guarantee you access and viewing of the Raphael Rooms and the Sistine Chapel 30 minutes before other operators and 1 hour before the general public.
In the quiet of the morning, walk through and enjoy the Pinecone Courtyard and the Museo Clementino. Then make your way to the secret room – the Cabinet of the Masks, not open to the general public and only available on this tour. Beyond the velvet ropes, view the spectacular mosaic floors carefully brought over from Hadrian's Villa in Tivoli, and view stunning depictions of Aphrodite and Nympha in various sculptures. Follow your guide through the Hall of Animals, Gallery of Statues, and Hall of Busts which also display masterpieces unseen to the public.
With your expert guide, make your way along the Vatican Museums and stop in front of the breathtaking Belvedere Torso and take photos from only a few feet away. Walk through the Gallery of Tapestries where you can see the work of Raphael’s students, and continue through the Gallery of Maps which fill the entire hall leading up to the highlight of the tour – Michelangelo’s Sistine Chapel. Before entering, your guide will give you all the information you will need to know to truly appreciate this masterpiece. Your guide will then lead you into the chapel where you will have plenty of time to enjoy and study this beautiful work of art.
The final stop of the tour will be the beautiful Basilica of St Peter’s, where you can admire the stunning architecture that is adorned by infamous art, such as Pietà by Michelangelo - crafted when he was just 25 years old - and the Baldacchino, the large bronze canopy sculpted by Bernini that frames the altar of the Basilica.