Vatican Tours

Vatican mosaic school & St Peter's Basilica

Learn the secrets of a millennia old art, then see it in practice in the world's most famous basilica.

  • Availability

    On Request

  • Duration

    2.5 hours

  • Start time

    On Request

  • Private tour

    On Request


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Why Choose it?

  • Visit the school still entrusted with restoring Saint Peter’s mosaics.
  • Discover the tools and techniques used to practice this ancient craft.
  • Explore Saint Peter’s with your expert guide for a new artistic perspective.

Tour description

Mosaics are among the most ancient expressions of decorative art, the first dating back to around 2,500 BC. Affluent ancient Greeks and Romans decorated their homes and temples with colorful mosaics showing various scenes. Gold was introduced to them during the Christian and Byzantine period. Though remarkable Roman mosaics survive at sites like nearby Ostia and Pompeii, the most triumphant mosaics of the modern age are those of Saint Peter’s Basilica.

Saint Peter’s Basilica does not contain a single painting. Instead, the most important building in the western world is home only to mosaics - over 28,000 mosaic pieces in a blend of different colours. Responsible for decorating and maintaining these mosaics is the Vatican School of Mosaic. Join us on our Vatican Mosaic School tour for a journey through this amazing craft.

Discover the artisanal techniques of the Vatican Mosaic School.

The Vatican Mosaic School not only creates new work, they also take care of restoring old mosaics. The school's artists, who have devoted their lives to refining this centuries-old craft, will walk you through the fascinating methods of their art. If you want to explore Rome's other magnificent mosaics, our Rome of the Mosaics Tour takes you on a journey across San Clemente, Santa Maria Maggiore, the Basilica of Santa Prassede, and Santa Pudenziana. Or if you want to try making mosaics yourself, we also run a kids-friendly mosaic class.

Equipped with our newfound knowledge, we then step from the Vatican Mosaic School into St. Peter's.

Saint Peter's Basilica boasts almost unparalleled beauty. Its dome, designed by Michelangelo, catches the eye of all of Rome's visitors. Its riches, like Bernini's Baldachin and Michelangelo's Pietà, draw visitors from all over the word. Now, having visited the Vatican Mosaic School, you can admire an underappreciated side of Saint Peter's - its ancient mosaic art. Your professional, private guide will walk you through the basilica's most eye-catching collection, recounting their stories to create an unforgettable artistic and cultural journey. 


Licensed tour guide.
Special reservation to the Vatican Mosaics School.


  • Vatican Mosaics School.
  • Saint Peter's Basilica.

Kids friendly:

This tour is kids friendly, your children are welcome

Wheelchair accessible:


meeting point:


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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!

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