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Overview

See Rome from the absolute top of Michelangelo's magnificent Dome on this wonderful fully guided tour of incredible art and architecture, topped off with views of the entire Vatican City and Gardens (and Papal helipad, and the Pope's private railway station), not forgetting views of the vast city of Rome, stretching tendril-like to the blue Tyrrhenian Sea and green Castelli Romani hills. Very few tourists climb so high to see so far!

Meet your expert Art Historian guide on the threshold of St. Peter's Square and make your way across marble paving to the first steps which lead up to the top of Michelangelo's Dome. There are 551 steep steps in total and of course this is too much exertion for most, so we take the elevator which cuts the step count by a sizable 171, leaving 380 (although some say 330...). We take our time and enjoy plenty of staircase breaks on the way around and up to the top of the dome!

At the summit, your guide will point out all the historical landmarks in all directions, be they in the Vatican City or the wider city of Rome. There are a great many so be prepared for detail! At this point, take as many photographs as you can, you're a very long way up and it's been a once-in-a-lifetime climb so don't hold back!

Easy does it on the way down to terra firma and then a brief break before entering St. Peter's Basilica - an absolute triumph of art and architecture unmatched anywhere else in the world, where Bernini's sculptures and Michelangelo's art rise above Holy Papal tombs and the perceived necropolis of St. Peter himself.

KNOW BEFORE YOU BOOK

Expert Vatican tour guide
Dome Climb: part staircase / part elevator!
Incredible views from the top!
Guided tour of St. Peter's Basilica
Papal sarcophagi
Does NOT include St. Peter's Tomb / Scavi / Necropolis - please book separately through the Vatican

Important Information

Average Group Size (Mar - Nov): 15
Sturdy, comfortable footwear advised
Average Group Size (Nov - Mar): 10
Tour does not run on public holidays
Activity level: easy
NOT wheelchair accessible