The Vatican · St. Peter’s tickets · Vatican Museums

The Vatican is a separate state and admission is precisely regulated. Find out about the dress code, skip-the-line tickets, and guided tours of the Vatican Museums, the Gardens, and St. Peter’s Basilica.

The Vatican is one of the most visited attractions in the world. With around 11 million visitors, in normal years, more than half of the around 20 million visitors to Rome visit St. Peter’s Basilica. There are around 7 million visitors to the Vatican Museums.

The Vatican City is the smallest state in the world. The head of state is Pope Francis.

Dress code in the Vatican

There is a dress code for entry to the Vatican Museums and St. Peter’s Basilica, all basilicas and churches in Rome and the catacombs. Shoulders and knees must be covered. Sturdy shoes are recommended in St. Peter’s Basilica. You will not be let in with beach sandals.

St. Peter's dress codeYou will only be admitted barefoot in special cases. You are also not allowed to wear any headgear.

St. Peter's Basilica

St. Peter’s Basilica is the largest church in Roman Catholic Christianity. It is the main church of the Pope.

It is erected on the place where the tomb of the church dignitary Peter is said to be. The apostle Peter is said to have been buried here after he was crucified in Nero’s circus, which was located near this place at the time.

St. Peter's Basilica interior

The first basilica was built by Emperor Constantine in the 4th century. The current church was built from 1505 to 1626 over the first basilica.

The beautiful dome of Michelangelo and the imposing altar of the Pope are located above the place where the tomb of the Apostle Peter is said to be.

Opening hours

St. Peter’s Basilica is open:

April – September 7am – 7pm

October – March 7am – 6.30pm

St. Peter’s Basilica is closed during the Pope’s masses and during the Pope’s general audiences on Wednesday mornings.

St. Peter's Basilica Rome Pietà

St. Peter's Basilica tickets

There are usually long queues at the security checkpoint at St. If you book an entrance ticket with an audio guide online, you skip the line and have skip-the-line access to the security checkpoint. This can save you a lot of time. Tickets

The official tours are very good. Enjoy the visit with a personal guide who can explain the most important details about this unique structure to you. With this tour you also enjoy preferential access to the security check.  Tickets

You are not allowed to bring dangerous objects into St. Peter’s Basilica. This also includes pocket knives as well as glass and metal bottles. Plastic bottles and umbrellas are allowed.

St. Peter's Dome

The ascent to the dome in the early morning is an unforgettable experience. You will be accompanied by an art historian who will also show you around St. Peter’s Basilica. Tickets

The necropolis

The necropolis is located under the grottoes of St. Peter’s Basilica. On this archaeological tour you will discover the burial ground of the first centuries and the tomb of Peter. The skip-the-line entry to St. Peter’s Basilica is included. Tickets

How to get to St. Peter's Basilica

St. Peter’s Basilica is on the orographic right side of the Tiber. In the 1st century, Nero’s circus and a burial ground were located here. This is the best way to get to St. Peter’s:

By bus:

Lines 40, 64 from Termini Station, Piazza Venezia, Piazza Navona

Line 23 from the Basilica of St. Paul and the Pyramid (Ostiense)

Line 81 from the Colosseum, Circus Maximus, Capitol

Lines 98, 881 from Aurelia Antica, Via Gregorio VII

By metro (underground):

Line A from the Basilica of San Giovanni, Repubblica, Spanish Steps, Piazzale Flaminio (Piazza del Popolo) to Ottaviano

By Tram:

Line 19 from Porta Maggiore, San Lorenzo, Bioparco

From Fiumicino airport:

Regional train FL1 direction Fara in Sabina to Trastevere and there change direction San Pietro

With the shuttle bus to Castel Sant’Angelo (Via Crescenzio stop)

Find St. Peter’s Basilica on Google Maps Googlemapslogo

From Ciampino airport:

With the shuttle bus to Termini and then with bus number 40 or 64

From the port of Civitavecchia: Regional train from Civitavecchia station to San Pietro station

The Vatican Museums

Vatican Museums sphere of Arnaldo PomodoroThe Vatican Museums are among the largest art collections in the world. They show the treasures that popes have accumulated over the centuries.

But not only the exhibits are worth seeing, but also the buildings. The rooms are artfully designed. Raffaello’s rooms, which he painted for Pope Julius II, and Michelangelo’s frescoes in the Sistine Chapel are particularly famous.

Opening hours

The Vatican Museums are open:

Monday – Thursday 10am – 8pm

Friday – Saturday 10am – 10pm

They are closed on January 1st + 6th, February 11th, March 19th, Easter Monday, May 1st, June 29th, around August 15th, November 1st, 8th, 25th + 26th December.

Vatican Sistine Chapel

Vatican Museums tickets

The Vatican Museums have drastically reduced the number of visitors and you can only visit them by reservation. There are reduced tickets for young people from 6 to 18 years of age and students up to 25 years. Children under 6 have free entry and do not need a reservation.

People with a disability of more than 75% also enjoy free entry and do not need a reservation.

The Vatican gardens

Vatican gardensThe Vatican Gardens are a green oasis in the middle of the Vatican City.

To visit the gardens, you can choose between a ride in an open bus or a two-hour guided tour on foot.

There are also gardens at the Pope’s summer residence in Castel Gandolfo. They are not included in this offer.

You can visit the Vatican Gardens very comfortably in an open bus. This new tour begins on the left side of St. Peter’s Basilica, at the gate on the left outside the colonnades of Bernini. Tickets

Find the meeting point for the tour on Google Maps Googlemapslogo

You can also book a guided walking tour of the Vatican Gardens. This tour starts at the Vatican Museums. The ticket includes a visit to the Vatican Museums and the Sistine Chapel. Tickets

How to get to the Vatican Museums

By bus:

Line 23 from the Basilica of St. Paul and the Pyramid (Ostiense) to Piazza Risorgimento

Line 81 from the Colosseum, Circus Maximus, Capitol

Line 49 from Piazza Risorgimento to the museum entrance

By metro (underground):

Line A from the Basilica of San Giovanni, Repubblica, Spanish Steps, Piazzale Flaminio (Piazza del Popolo) to Cipro

By Tram:

Line 19 from Porta Maggiore, San Lorenzo, Bioparco

From Fiumicino airport:

Regional train FL1 direction Fara in Sabina to Trastevere and there change direction Valle Aurelia – the station after San Pietro

From Ciampino airport:

With the shuttle bus to Termini and then Metro A to Cipro

From the port of Civitavecchia:

Regional train from Civitavecchia station to Valle Aurelia station

Find the Vatican Museums on Google Maps Googlemapslogo

Castel Sant'Angelo

View from Castel Sant'AngeloEmperor Hadrian had a mausoleum built on the right side of the Tiber in the 2nd century. At that time the area was outside Rome and was a cemetery, which is also said to be the tomb of the Apostle Peter.

The structure was later modified frequently. Popes used Castel Sant’Angelo as a refuge in troubled times or as a prison for their opponents.

Castel Sant’Angelo is now a museum and offers wonderful viewpoints of the Vatican and the city of Rome.

Opening hours

The Castel Sant’Angelo is open all year round. It is closed on January 1st, May 1st and December 25th.

9 am – 6:30 pm, closing 7:30 pm

Castel Sant'Angelo tickets

With this skip-the-line ticket you do not have to stand in line at the Castel Sant’Angelo checkout. tickets

With this guided tour you will discover the secrets of Castel Sant’Angelo tickets

How to get to Castel Sant'Angelo

Castel Sant'Angelo view from the Angel's bridgeCastel Sant’Angelo is located near St. Peter’s Basilica and you can use ore or less the same means of transport. However, the metro, tram and the train station are further away.

By bus:

Lines 40, 64 from Termini Station, Piazza Venezia, Piazza Navona

Line 23 from the Basilica of St. Paul and the Pyramid (Ostiense)

Line 81 from the Colosseum, Circus Maximus, Capitol

Line 98, 881 from Aurelia Antica, Via Gregorio VII

From Fiumicino airport:

With the shuttle bus to Castel Sant’Angelo (Via Crescenzio stop)