Visit the Sistine Chapel 30 minutes before the doors are opened to the public, and see its Renaissance treasures without the crowds! After gazing in wonder at Michelangelo’s ‘The Last Judgement’ fresco and other astounding works of art, head inside the Vatican Museums, bypassing all the entrance lines outside. Then, spend as long as you want inside, exploring independently with a map and seeing highlights like Raphael’s Rooms and more.
Rise early to meet your host outside the Vatican Museums, and then head straight inside to the Sistine Chapel, hearing about its history and treasures on the way (talking is not permitted inside). As one of the first visitors of the day, make the most of this sacred room without the crowds, and stand up close to incredible artwork such as Michelangelo’s The Last Judgement – the iconic blue fresco that adorns the chapel’s back wall.The Renaissance-era genius was also responsible for the Sistine Chapel’s ceiling frescoes, collectively representing one of the largest bodies of artwork to be painted by just one person. Gaze upward and marvel at scenes depicting Old Testament tales like the world-famous Creation of Adam, where God brings Adam to life with the touch of his finger. After strolling around the chapel, admiring the works and soaking up the sacred atmosphere of the pope’s private chapel, head into the Vatican Museums with your entrance ticket and map. Then, explore at leisure, enjoying seeing more incredible art work before the later-morning crowds arrive.Your visit to the museum complex is independent, meaning that you can see whatever you want to see and spend as long as you want inside. Explore must-visit halls like the Gallery of Maps and Raphael’s Rooms, and see classical antiquities, Etruscan artifacts and some of the world’s most exquisite pieces of Renaissance artwork.