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St Peters Basilica + Sistine Chapel

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Washington DC
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St Peters Basilica + Sistine Chapel

To avoid lines, do I need to buy advance ticket to enter St Peters? Know I need advance ticket for entering Sistine Chapel, but if I also pay for a tour of Chapel-- do I avoid more lines? Looks to me that a ticket to Chapel, does not move u to head of line, which some folks hv said requires being part of a small tour. What do I do to best avoid the lines at both places? I'll be there early May, will that be high tourism time in Vatican City? Recommendations for who to get tickets/tours from?

Sydney, Australia
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1. Re: St Peters Basilica + Sistine Chapel

Admission to St Peter's Basilica is free and there are no tickets. The only queue is for security.

If you buy an online admission ticket for the Vatican Museums (which include the Sistine Chapel), you skip the queue. No need for a tour. Book with mv.vatican.va

BARCELONA.SPAIN
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2. Re: St Peters Basilica + Sistine Chapel

And if you don´t want to join a tour group for both the Museums and the Basílica, the line at the Basilica advance quickly. I was there las month and the queu was going around the whole square but in 15 minutes I was inside

sydney
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3. Re: St Peters Basilica + Sistine Chapel

You skip the queue but it doesn't mean the Sistina won't be crowded. The best way to avoid that is to go as early as you can and bolt for the chapel when you enter the museum. If you do that you can have some uncrowded time in the chapel before the hordes descend. If the crowd gets too much, try and grab a seat around the walls and just keep looking up at that astounding ceiling. It makes the all the annoyances worthwhile.

Francoise

Excusemewhereis.blogspot.com

London, United...
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4. Re: St Peters Basilica + Sistine Chapel

There are some agencies that organizes travel tour to Sistine Chapel with tourist guide and possibility to avoid the huge line. If you just buy on line i think so it isn't guarantee that you will skip the line. you can find some representatives of those agencies in front of metro station Ottaviano- you should pay about 35 euros, or more.

Sydney, Australia
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5. Re: St Peters Basilica + Sistine Chapel

There is no need to join a tour, although the tour companies would like you to think that there is.

If you buy a timed entry ticket online direct with the Vatican, using the link I provided before, you entirely skip the ticket queue.

pittsburgh
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6. Re: St Peters Basilica + Sistine Chapel

Nick is absolutely right. The tour companies want you to think you need to join a tour as the only way to enter without waiting in line. The truth is if you buy tickets from the link Nick gave you it allows you to bypass the lines. These are timed tickets, you get to choose the time you wish to enter. Once you get to the doors you show your confirmation to the guard and he lets you inside. Then you are free to visit any rooms of the museums you wish.

If you do wish to book a tour you can do that at the website Nick lists also. This is an official tour lasting 2 hours, allows you to bypass the lines and costs 31 euros. This also includes the admission price. After the tour you have the option of re-entering the museums to see rooms you may be interested in but didn't see on the tour or going to the basilica.

If the Sistine chapel is all you're interested in seeing just be aware that it is always crowded. Most people are not interested in seeing the museums but are only interested in the chapel which is why they get there early and make a bee line for the chapel. This is why it remains so crowded throughout the day. Even if you go early and get to the museums when they open you'll be in the first wave of people going directly to the chapel. It's a half an hour brisk walk from the entry of the museums to the chapel entry so pace yourself and follow the crowd.

Donna

Washington DC
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7. Re: St Peters Basilica + Sistine Chapel

Tremendous answers from all who posted. Thank you for equiping me for this adventure. Safe & happy future travels to all of u.

USA
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8. Re: St Peters Basilica + Sistine Chapel

Thanks for the details ... sometimes it's hard to visualize how big everything is. But the 1/2 hr walk to the Sistene Chapel just did it!

Minnesota
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9. Re: St Peters Basilica + Sistine Chapel

We were there two weeks ago and splurged on the "Pristine Sistine" tour offered by Walks of Italy. It is expensive, but you get in early and see the Sistine Chapel with just a few other small groups. We had an extremely knowledgeable and personable guide, who kept us enthralled for almost 4 hours (including my 13-year-old daughter). It was our single biggest expenditure in 8 days in Rome, but worth every penny.

10. Re: St Peters Basilica + Sistine Chapel

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