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Vatican Museum

I'll be in rome for four days and on one of them we'll visit St Peter's and the Vatican Museum. We'd like to stay flexible as to which of the four days this is - perhaps to do this on a rainy day.
How much in advance do you have to reserve tickets for the Vatican Museum? We're going Dec 20-24, and would like to wait as long as we can before we commit to a pareticular day to go to the Vatican.

Posted by
212 posts

I would advise planning your Vatican visit as soon before Christmas as possible. If you go on the 21st, you should be able to beat all the Christmas crowds and just walk right in, especially if you go after 11:00 or so.

Posted by
4152 posts

I would suggest getting advance tickets and going on the 21st. The closer you wait til christmas the more crowded it will get. You can buy entrance tickets or book a tour through:

This will allow you to bypass any line there may be outside. The lines for the museums can get very long (up to an hour most days) but with pre-purchased tickets or a tour you can skip the line and go directly in. If you dont want to pre-purchase tickets you can show up in the afternoon when there is usually no line. Anytime after 1pm is usually good.

The basilica requires no ticket but if you go to the basilica first you will have to wait in the security line to get inside. It goes pretty fast but can be up to a half hour long. If you decide to see the basilica after the museums you won't have to go through security again and can exit the museums straight into the basilica.


Posted by
50 posts

Book a tour with Through Eternity and it will be smooth sailing. Terrific company. We are anti-tours and really enjoyed touring the Vatican with this company.