Are you looking forward to a visit to the Vatican but not sure you can face the queuing and the crowds? Then, this is the tour for you! With skip-the-line entry this “Off-the-beaten Path Tour ensures you will enjoy the very best the Vatican has to offer away from the usual hustle and bustle. You have the services of a top-rated guide who will relate the history of the Vatican City and take you to some of the lesser-known parts. You will then visit the Sistine Chapel receiving an overview of this wonderful place and its treasures from your guide. This tour is an opportunity to learn about the Vatican, its history and that of the Roman Catholic Church and its many Popes. It offers an alternative view of the Vatican Museums, away from the usual tourist trail.
Meet the guide at your hotel and reach the Vatican Museums where with skip-the-line entry you begin your tour away from the bustling tourist crowds and busy galleries. This is truly an alternative experience of the Vatican Museums where you can immerse yourself in the history of the Catholic Church and the lives of the Popes. On the tour you have the opportunity to discover some of the lesser-known parts of the museums like the Gallery of Paintings where you will see wonderful masterpieces by Raphael, Caravaggio, Leonardo da Vinci, Tiziano and many more! Then it is on to the Carriage Pavilion where the many vehicles used over the centuries by the various Popes are displayed. There is the Grand Gala Berlin made in Rome in 1826 for Pope Leo XII, the Fiat Campagnola, the car in which Pope John Paul II was standing when an assassination attempt was made in 1981 in St. Peter’s Square. There are also three Popemobiles on show (Land Rover, Toyota and Mercedes 230 GE) and the Renault 4 donated by Pope Francis in 2013. There will be a visit to the courtyard of the Pine Cone (cortile della Pigna) followed by a visit to the recently re-opened New Wing with its exceptional collection of ancient statues. This Gallery was originally opened in 1822 to display works of art previously confiscated by Napoleon and subsequently return from France following his defeat. Of particular interest is the statue of The Emperor August of Primaporta and a mysterious statue of the River Nile. At this point on the tour your guide will give you a detailed overview of the Sistine Chapel (talking inside is strictly forbidden). Once you enter the Sistine Chapel you will have some background knowledge of the works displayed so that you can more fully appreciate its beauty and artistry. We are sure you will love this tour and the Vatican City State!