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La Pieta

La Pieta: Our most recommended tours and activities

Saint Peter's Basilica Official Audioguide

1. Saint Peter's Basilica Official Audioguide

Explore one of Rome's most famous and magnificent sites! Discover why the American philosopher Ralph Waldo Emerson described this site as "an ornament of the earth … the sublime of the beautiful". St. Peter's Basilica in the Vatican is the primary temple of Christianity, and is built in the Renaissance style, with a central dome dominating the skyline of Rome. As you enter the church, you will see that its interior is much bigger than those of any other cathedral. Using an official audio-guide of the Basilica, you can start your visit at any point of the church, without having to follow the order dictated by the presence of a guide. You can decide, for example, to begin with the heart of the Basilica, beneath the high altar and the Bernini's Baldachin, where you will discover the “Confession” or “Chapel of the Confession”, in reference to the confession of faith by St. Peter, which led to his martyrdom and burial place. You may choose to end with "La Pietà", the masterpiece of Michelangelo Buonarroti, or with the St. Peter's bronze statue (so worshipped by all the pilgrims visiting over the centuries).

Vatican: Papal Audience and St. Peter's Basilica Guided Tour

2. Vatican: Papal Audience and St. Peter's Basilica Guided Tour

See the Pope himself during the papal audience ceremony and enjoy a guided tour of St. Peter's Basilica. Arrive at the meeting point and meet the staff. The staff will inform you about the Audience (free entrance) and your St. Peter's Basilica guided tour. Then watch the Pope make his way to the stage and join the weekly gathering which includes prayers, blessings, and a homily. After the audience, enjoy a guided tour of the iconic Basilica of St. Peter. As you tour the Renaissance-style church, with its famous dome and unrivaled architecture, see masterpieces like Michelangelo's Pietà and Bernini's Baldacchino. To get a complete experience, select the option with the Vatican Gardens and enjoy insightful commentary on an open bus.

Vatican Museums Early Entry Tour with Buffet Breakfast

3. Vatican Museums Early Entry Tour with Buffet Breakfast

Have the Vatican to yourself on this exclusive early morning tour that whisks you through closed doors for a buffet breakfast in the peaceful Pinecone Courtyard, before anyone else enters the museums. While the general public waits in line outside, feast on an Italian-American breakfast buffet of cooked-to-order eggs, meats, cheeses, muffins, croissants, fresh fruits, cereals, and even pancakes, flipped by the Vatican's pancake chef. Dining in the beautiful Pinecone Courtyard, alongside one of the Vatican Museums' most beautiful works of modern art, experience a level of tranquility rarely seen by Vatican visitors. Then follow your guide to explore the Vatican Museums. Still closed to the general public, the Museums are quieter now than throughout the rest of the day. With only 10 people per group, have time and space to really appreciate the art. See rooms such as the Hall of Maps, Gallery of the Tapestries, Gallery of the Candelabra and incredible Raphael Rooms. Your guide will bring works of art to life, pointing out things you would have missed on your own. Continue to the legendary Sistine Chapel. Then, skip the ticket lines to enter St. Peter’s Basilica. See the altar and marvel at Michelangelo’s La Pietà sculpture.

Vatican City: Early Dome Climb with St. Peter’s Basilica

4. Vatican City: Early Dome Climb with St. Peter’s Basilica

Your tour will start early in the morning in Vatican City, the smallest nation in the world. Meet your licensed, English-speaking guide at the Fountain of the Tiare (Fontana delle Tiare), where you will be accompanied to witness the St. Peter’s Basilica Dome, the tallest Dome in the world. Start the climb to the Dome while listening to the fascinating facts and stories narrated by your guide. Avoid the 231 steps and take the elevator to the first level of the Dome, where the doors will open to the wonder that is Michelangelo’s Dome. From here you will get to admire the views of the interiors of the Basilica from above. Gaze upon the incredible mosaics, the amazing Latin Scripts up close and explore the roof of the basilica. Start you climb up 320 steps on this beautifully crafted and narrow spiral staircase to the very top of the Dome. This quite tiresome climb up will surely be worthwhile the energy spent to reach the top. You will get to admire the view from the highest place within the Vatican. This breathtakingly beautiful panoramic view of the Vatican City, its gorgeous gardens and ancient Rome that includes the Colosseum and the Pantheon will be a once in a lifetime opportunity. After having admired this splendid panoramic view from what will seem to be and feel as the “top of the world”, you will be able to descend to the St. Peter’s Basilica floors completely avoiding the long and tiresome lines outside. Let your guide accompany you through the beauty that is this marvelous architectural piece admired and revered by the entire world. The Basilica is the largest church in the world and the heart of Christianity, a place of pilgrimage in which millions of people gather every year. Prepare to be enchanted by this baroque masterpiece designed by Bernini and Bramante and to admire breathtaking art works like Michelangelo’s Pietà sculpture.This magnificent creation of Michelangelo is said to have been the perfect sculpture that helped launch his career unlike any previous work he had done. The scene of the Pieta shows the Virgin Mary holding the dead body of Christ after his crucifixion, death, and removal from the cross, but before he was placed in the tomb. This is one of the key events from the life of the Virgin, known as the Seven Sorrows of Mary, which were the subject of Catholic devotional prayers, it is also said to be the only piece Michelangelo ever signed. Having soaked up the splendor that is this wonderful basilica, make your way down to the Vatican Grottoes also known as the Papal Tombs. Located inside the Grottoes are the tombs of over 90 Popes, a few monarchs and other church dignitaries, which dates to the 10th century. The Vatican Grottoes is considered to be the most visited place in Vatican City and is an absolute must -see of this glorious nation.

Vatican Small Group Morning Tour with Secret Room Access

5. Vatican Small Group Morning Tour with Secret Room Access

Meet your guide in front of Caffé Vaticano, just outside the Vatican Museums, and join a small group of no more than 6 people. In this intimate group, you can easily make your way through the museums and experience the sites and artifacts up-close. With the personalized attention of your guide, you are free to engage and ask all the questions you like. Thanks to a new partnership in 2022, you can enjoy first entry into the Museums, reserved by only a handful of other tour operators. This special entry and tour are designed to guarantee you access and viewing of the Raphael Rooms and the Sistine Chapel 30 minutes before other operators and 1 hour before the general public. In the quiet of the morning, walk through and enjoy the Pinecone Courtyard and the Museo Clementino. Then make your way to the secret room – the Cabinet of the Masks, not open to the general public and only available on this tour. Beyond the velvet ropes, view the spectacular mosaic floors carefully brought over from Hadrian's Villa in Tivoli, and view stunning depictions of Aphrodite and Nympha in various sculptures. Follow your guide through the Hall of Animals, Gallery of Statues, and Hall of Busts which also display masterpieces unseen to the public. With your expert guide, make your way along the Vatican Museums and stop in front of the breathtaking Belvedere Torso and take photos from only a few feet away. Walk through the Gallery of Tapestries where you can see the work of Raphael’s students, and continue through the Gallery of Maps which fill the entire hall leading up to the highlight of the tour – Michelangelo’s Sistine Chapel. Before entering, your guide will give you all the information you will need to know to truly appreciate this masterpiece. Your guide will then lead you into the chapel where you will have plenty of time to enjoy and study this beautiful work of art. The final stop of the tour will be the beautiful Basilica of St Peter’s, where you can admire the stunning architecture that is adorned by infamous art, such as Pietà by Michelangelo - crafted when he was just 25 years old - and the Baldacchino, the large bronze canopy sculpted by Bernini that frames the altar of the Basilica.

Rome: St.Peter's Basilica and Dome Guided Tour

6. Rome: St.Peter's Basilica and Dome Guided Tour

Travel back in time as your guide outlines the facinating history of St.Peter's Basilica in Rome on this guided walking tour. Hear your guide clearly at a distance with the included headsets. Marvel at famous masterpieces like Michelangelo's Pietà. Check in at the tour supplier's office and meet your guide. Make your way to the Basilica and listen as you guide tells you about the origins of the first basilica of Constantine to the changes made by Maderno. Be moved as you hear about about Michelangelo's works, including the moving Pietà statue which depicts Mary holding and mourning over the body of Jesus. Discover the history of the chapels inside the church. View the Baldacchino, a large Baroque sculpted bronze canopy, which was crafted by Bernini. Finally, leave the Basilica and follow your guide to the top of the dome. Look out over the city and the Vatican gardens and capture pictures of the breathtaking views.

Private Early Morning Sistine Chapel Tour

7. Private Early Morning Sistine Chapel Tour

Enjoy the Sistine Chapel as Popes and princes did: early in the morning. This private tour offers the perfect environment to explore the Sistine Chapel and other works of incomparable beauty in the Vatican Museums. Your personal guide will help you visualize the cultural context in which such works arose, immersing you in the climate of the Renaissance. This exclusive Vatican private tour will take you to discover this season of human history when the flowering of the arts was accompanied by the evolution of science, together laying the foundations for much of our modern world. This was a period of overwhelming enthusiasm and of amazing innovation. The men of the Renaissance didn't merely dream of changing the world, they  revolutionised it. The printing press, the geographic maps with which Columbus reached the Americas, modern science, architecture, art, and the modern sense of beauty were all creations of the Italian Renaissance.  Some of the the most important works that you will discover, such as timeless Greek masterpieces like the Laocoon, the Belvedere Torso and the Apollo Belvedere, were excavated at the time of Michelangelo and Raphael, who studied and admired them in the same architectural context in which they are preserved today. The artworks that they created are the fruit of their careful study. And so you too will pass through the Pinecone courtyard, the Belvedere courtyard and the tapestry galleries on your Vatican private tour, discovering a selection of masterpieces with a guide capable of recreating the climate of the epoch, helping you to appreciate the Raphael Rooms and the Sistine Chapel in their historical context. Please note, the Basilica of St.Peter's may be subject to unscheduled closings and late openings for religious ceremonies. Because these are often last-minute for security reasons, guests will not be notified in advance. Instead, you will be provided with a complete experience by exploring the Vatican Museums in more detail. T. Please also note that the Wednesday morning tour will not visit St. Peter's Basilica, as the church is closed for the weekly Papal Audience at this time. The tour will run as normal, with the extra time spent exploring the Vatican Museums in more detail.

Rome: St. Peters' Basilica and the German Cemetery

8. Rome: St. Peters' Basilica and the German Cemetery

Visit a lesser-known spot in Rome: the German cemetery at the Vatican. Enter the Vatican through a back door and encounter a small oasis of calm. Learn more about the oldest German national foundation in Rome. Afterward, see priceless works of art and hear interesting stories as you visit St. Peter's Basilica. Admire the grandiose dome at one of the world's largest churches. See the bronze baldachin under the dome, which is as big as a ten-story house.

Rome: Guided City Tour with Colosseum and Vatican Entry

9. Rome: Guided City Tour with Colosseum and Vatican Entry

Our groups, limited to a maximum of 15 people, are small and intimate in order to give you the best experience and to facilitate the interaction with your expert guide, who will be with you for 7 hours. Comfortably traveling by minivan, you will be able to maximise your touring time, without the hassle of trying to get from one site to another via taxi or public transportation. It will all start with a fascinating visit to the highlights of he Vatican Museums with as grand final the Sistine Chapel and Saint Peter's Basilica. Then a drive to the city centre for a magnificent stroll among the squares and fountains. Last but certainly not least the the Ancient city. The ruins of the Roman Forum and the Colosseum.

Vatican Museums & Sistine Chapel Skip-the-Ticket-Line Tour

10. Vatican Museums & Sistine Chapel Skip-the-Ticket-Line Tour

The Vatican hides so many treasures that it makes sense to visit it the smart way: by skipping the ticket lines at the entry and learning about its wonderful collections from a professional local guide in a small group. This tour for small groups allows you to discover the best of the Vatican following the explanations and the routes traced by your expert guide. Get to see the artworks of Michelangelo and Raphael, the Gallery of Tapestries and the Gallery of the Candelabra. The tour ends at St Peter’s Square.

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What people are saying about La Pieta

Overall rating

4.3 / 5

based on 1,441 reviews

Overall the trip was excellent. Our guide was terrific (Edward)- his communication, his excitement, passion, enthusiasm, along with his huge knowledge was the making of the tour. He went above and beyond by also helping one of the other less mobile guests by taking their arm when they got tired. Breakfast also surpassed expectations.

Well worth the price. We weren’t sure about it at first, but after having done it, very grateful we booked. We had less of a crowd and didn’t have to wait in line to get in. Breakfast in also in a beautiful area. Our guide, Hilaria, was absolutely wonderful. It was more helpful than we thought to have her input and guidance.

We bought the audio guide the day before and it was a success, it tells you point by point everything that is found in the basilica, of course a success.

Practical and comprehensive guide, with personal earphones, the only flaw is that the battery of your mobile phone runs out

Marina was a fabulous tour guide. Her love of art cam through in everything she showed us.