Vatican Tours

Early Morning Vatican Tour

A complete and uniquely personal Vatican tour with prized priority entrance

  • Availability

    On Request

  • Duration

    3.5 hours

  • Start time

    On Request

  • Private tour

    On Request

REQUEST YOUR TOUR

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Why Choose it?

  • Go straight to the Sistine Chapel before the crowds arrive.
  • Skip the regular lines to ensure exclusive access to the Vatican.
  • Customize the morning exactly to your liking on this exclusive, private tour.
  • Choose your own itinerary or let our expert guide you through the highlights.

Tour description

Experience a personal tour of the Vatican's collection with your own private, licensed guide an hour before the masses arrive. Described as one of the best experiences in Rome, this tour takes you on a journey of discovery. Revere priceless masterpieces of the Renaissance together with sculptures and mosaics from antiquity. All part of the papal collection. All waiting for you to discover.

Taking a private tour means you can customize your time in the Eternal City's epicenter to include exactly what you want. The Sistine Chapel, Saint Peter's Basilica, and the Vatican Museums' mind-blowing collection await you, but so too do such wonders as the stunning mosaics of the Cabinet of Masks and the unforgettable frescoes of the Raphael Rooms. Spend time among the hauntingly lifelike statues of the Gallery of the Candelabra, explore the cartographical masterpieces of the Gallery of Maps, and lose yourself in the incredibly intricate decorations adorning the walls of the Gallery of Tapestries. After your private three-and-a-half hour tour, you'll feel you've truly experienced the Vatican.

Journey to other worlds in the Raphael Rooms

Painted while Michelangelo was working away on the Sistine Chapel, the frescoes decorating the Raphael Rooms are truly a sight to behold. Transport yourself back in time to the world of the great Greek philosophers as you interpolate yourself into the School of Athens.

See the Old Saint Peter's Basilica in the background of the dramatic Fire at the Borgo. Bear witness to the battle that brought Christianity to the fore in the Battle of the Milvian Bridge.

Experience exclusive access to the Cabinet of Masks

The Cabinet of Masks, named after the mosaics in the room’s center taken from Hadrian's Villa at Tivoli, can't boast the same frescoes as the Raphael Rooms. It can, however, claim one of the Vatican's most stunning collection of statues. Among the sculptures on display are the marvellous Three Graces, a nymph which was a favorite of Goethe, and several statues of Aphrodite - the Greek goddess of love.

Meet the Laocoön - a statue soaked in pathos

Discovered on the Esquiline in 1506 (though sculpted perhaps 1,500 years earlier), the Laocoön statue is one of antiquity’s undisputed masterpieces. Mentioned by Pliny the Elder, Mount Vesuvius’ most famous victim, the artwork depicts one of the most famous scenes from the Trojan War in which the gods punish a Trojan priest named Laocoön for revealing the Greeks' trickery and warning them not to lead the wooden horse into Troy’s walls.

Dragged into the sea by a serpent along with his two young sons, the statue powerfully captures Laocoon's agonising desperation - a helpless father struggling in vain to save his children. The Vatican is home to a host of other ancient statues you can choose from, including dozens of busts of Roman emperors and the Pantheon of gods they worshipped.  

Explore the Vatican Museums' exquisite galleries

Your Private Early Morning Vatican tour offers you the opportunity to choose from any of the Vatican's most prized highlights, many of which lie off the museum's beaten path. Immerse yourself in the statues of the Gallery of the Candelabra, nourish yourself with the knowledge of how medieval geographers understood the world around them in the immersive Gallery of Maps

You then have the chance to lose yourself in the intricate detail of Flemish designs in the ornate Gallery of Tapestries to see the masterful frescoes of the Raphael Rooms which most say rival those of Michelangelo.

Pay homage to Michelangelo's Sistine Chapel

Marvel at Michelangelo’s masterpiece, the Sistine Chapel, in the peace and tranquility it deserves, practically alone and free from any crowds. Your specialist guide will inject life into the frescoes of this private papal chapel, bringing it to life and crafting a once-in-a-lifetime experience.

Discover the story behind Michelangelo's creation of the Last Judgement, see if you can spot key figures and scenes on the Sistine Chapel Ceiling - even try to identify Michelangelo himself who painted his self-portrait into the torso of a certain saint.

Soak in the sights of Saint Peter's Basilica

The final Vatican highlight on your complete early morning Vatican tour is the majestic Saint Peter’s Basilica. Admire its marvellous mosaics, still cared for by the Vatican Mosaic School, and come face to face with Michelangelo’s Pieta, and Bernini’s Baldachin in all their resplendent glory.

Conclude your private adventure outside the basilica, in Saint Peter's Square, where the Pope still holds his audiences. In the shade of the ancient Egyptian Vatican obelisk, you can absorb the incredible experience of having had the morning in the Vatican to yourself.

Many consider our Vatican Early Morning Tour as being “one of the best experiences in Rome.”

Book yours today and experience it for yourself.

*Please note, shoulders and knees need to be covered during the tour. No vests, shorts, or skirts above the knee will be allowed inside the Vatican Museums and St. Peter’s Basilica.*

included:

Skip-the-line entrance
Licensed tour guide

itinerary:

  • Vatican Museums
  • Raphael Rooms
  • Cabinet of Masks
  • Laocoön Statue
  • Belvedere Courtyard
  • Gallery of the Candelabra
  • Gallery of Maps
  • Gallery of Tapestries
  • Sistine Chapel
  • Saint Peter's Basilica
  • Saint Peter's Square

Kids friendly:

This tour is kids friendly, your children are welcome

Wheelchair accessible:

Yes

meeting point:

Vatican Museums entrance, viale Vaticano (This is the address to be given to the taxi)

see on map

excellent guides

Our guides are fluent in English and have a contagious passion for the inspiring cultural heritage of our Italian cities. 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!

This tour is also available as a Shared Tour!

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