Vatican Gardens
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Vatican Gardens: Tours & Tickets

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5 things to see and do at the Vatican Gardens

Roughly half of the Vatican is covered by flawlessly cultivated parks and gardens. You'll need to book a tour at least a week in advance if you want to see them, but here are a few of the treasures that'll be revealed if you do!

Sphere Within Sphere

Arnaldo Pomodoro's Sphere Within Sphere was the first modern art piece to be exhibited at the Vatican Museums. It looks static, but push it firmly and it'll begin to rotate!

Eagle Fountain

Outside the Mater Ecclesiae nun monastery lies this spectacular fountain, designed by Giovanni Vasanzio to look like a heavenly lagoon.

Courtyard of the Pinecone

The highest terrace in the famed Belvedere Courtyard takes its name from the 1st-century bronze sculpture of a pinecone that once crowned a Roman fountain.

Radio Vaticana

Founded in 1931, the station played a vital role in the broadcast of anti-fascist information. Unfortunately, the first report on Nazi treatment of Poles and Jews fell on deaf ears.

House of Pius IV

Built in 1563, the beautiful "Casina di Pio IV" is the oldest building in the Vatican Gardens. It's now an integral part of the Pontificial Academy of Sciences.

Vatican Gardens: Our Tips

What are the opening times?

Opening hours are subject to reservation. The Vatican Gardens aren't open to the general public, but you can still visit as part of a guided tour. Numbers are incredibly limited, however, so you'll need to book at least a week in advance.

How to get there?

The closest Metro stop is Ottaviano-San Pietro. If you take a taxi though, ask about flat-rates (between major landmarks) or else make sure the meter's running. Some cab drivers try to get away with charging a special "Vatican fee" for tourists.

Good to Know

  • When to visit
    Open hours are subject to to reservation.
  • What is the price?
    Adult tickets, which include admission to the Museums, are €32.00 per person.
  • Will I need a guide?
    The garden tour can only be taken with a guide.
  • How to get there
    Take the Metro to the Ottaviano-San Pietro station.
  • Additional tips
    *The walking tour of the gardens takes about two hours. | Open bus tours also available, check online for more details. *

What People Are Saying About Vatican Gardens

Unique view of St. Peter's basilica- highly recommended

This was a great visit. Found guide easily as per instructions. Taken quickly threw security and past waiting crowds to audio desk. No real issues here but you do need to leave a driving license or credit card as deposit for audio guide- wouldn't allow passports. Bit of a climb (349 steps) but well worth it. Views were amazing and commentary helpful. Walking on the roof (complete with cafe and shop!) was brilliant too. All felt very safe. Would highly recommend.

Great views of the Vatican area and Rome

Great views of Rome and the Vatican. Line moved fast compared to other Vatican tours. However it was a bit chaotic at the top but it was a beautiful day for photographs.

Not as exhausting as expected and the views are spectacular

We were really pleased that we did this tour. Valeria was our guide and she was lovely. It was, as the title suggests, a very quick guided tour of the Basilica but as we'd visited it previously, the dome was the focus for us. The lift to the roof of the Basilica was nice (!) and we were able to walk round the balcony inside and get a completely different perspective on the interior then we climbed the 326 steps (I think) to the top of the dome. Valeria was excellent, pointing out places of interest within the Vatican and across the City. We watched a spectacular thunderstorm from the top of the dome - the rain waited until we reached ground floor. Would recommend this tour of the dome.

Great tour with insightful tour guide - highly recommendable!

It has been a real pleasure to do this tour through the Vatican gardens, the Sistine Chapel and the Vatican Museum. The tour guide was highly qualified and we enjoyed listening to her and her sons' stories. I would highly recommend this tour to anyone that likes to have a half-day tour through the Vatican.

Amazing , the most incredable thing I have every seen

Our guide was extremely nice and gave us a wonderful tour of the Vatican museum, St Peters and Sistine Chapel. A must have tour to truly understand what is all means!

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Vatican Gardens
Based on 11 reviews by GetYourGuide customers