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DaVinci's - Last Supper? Viator vs. Context

Hi All!
I am going on Rick's Italy villages tour and have opted to fly in and out of Milan. I arranged to be in Milan for two days prior to the tour. Here is my dilemma (ah, they should all be this tough (wink) ): I have used context Tours in the past and found them to be very informative and the docents to be superlative. However, I have just discovered that the tours they offer in Milan do not include a viewing of "The Last Supper". Viator does. Has anyone been on the Viator tour? Is the Last Supper a must see? To help you understand where I come from, my past experience with great works of art, DaVinci especially have been amazing. However, I found the Mona Lisa to be a great disappointment. Not the work of art, the fact that there were so many people it was virtually impossible to get near it, relax and view it and it was behind a protective glass which also inhibited viewing.

Is the experience of viewing The Last Supper a good one? Should I dump a Context tour and take the Viator to see this mural?
Thanks for your feedback

Posted by
5730 posts

Lori. Viator does not run tours. They sell tours run by other parties, so your tour will actually be ticketed and run by another local company. IMO, Last Supper is a must see, but you need to understand the limitations. The entry of groups into the viewing area is strictly controlled in size and time to protect the art. On any tour, you will only get 15 minutes in the viewing area before they usher you out. We found that was enough time to get our time at the front of the well-behaved and respectful group.

There are many companies that book tours that include the Last Supper, as well as other attractions in Milan. I can't remember the name of the one we used (we just googled them up), but we enjoyed seeing La Scala and the Duomo, as much as the Last Supper. But would not have gone to Milan at all if LS was not there.

Posted by
36 posts

Dear Stan,
Thank you for all the great information. I will definitely make it a point to see it. Did your tour take you to all of those sites as well as the Last Supper? If you remember the name of the company, I'd appreciate it. Thanks so much.

Posted by
5730 posts

Lori, I think we went with "Last Supper Milano" but might have been "DarkRome.com". Yes, our walking tour (partly on bus) included LaScala, Galleria, Duomo, the big fortress (name escapes me) and the Galleria, which are all fairly close, and then bused to the Last Supper location at the end. But please keep checking for more replies as there are probably more opinions you want to see. Many people don't like to have to buy a package tour like this, and opt for working hard to get individual tickets just for Last Supper. It seems like these third-party tour operators buy up most of the tickets for the LS as soon as they are available, making it difficult but not impossible, for you to get them yourself.

Not saying Viator is not a good option, just that they don't actually run the tour, so its hard to compare when you don't know which company is actually taking you there. If their package sounds good and cost is reasonable, I would go ahead with it.

Posted by
1116 posts

We walked into a tour office directly across from the Duomo plaza and booked a tour for the Last Supper for the following morning.

Look up Trip Advisor Last Supper Tours and see their rankings. You can contact each tour directly and have it planned before you go .

Posted by
36 posts

Carla,
It sounds like you were lucky. I have been perusing TripAdvisor and the internet and a lot of people say that the tour companies buy up the 8 Euro tickets as soon as they are available and it's impossible to just pick up a ticket. So glad it worked out well for you.

I think I have decided that I will be seeing The Last Supper, La Scala and the Duomo. I just have to find the right tour for them or do some studying and buying individual tickets.

Posted by
2258 posts

Lori, I went on the Dark Rome walking tour of Milano just about 2 years ago. It was fine, but not really special compared to other tours I have taken. We started with both the exterior and interior of the Duomo, but not the roof. We stepped into the Galleria, then walked through a variety of streets, past La Scala Opera House, briefly through the exterior of the castle but not actually inside, and ended up at the church which houses The Last Supper. There you spend 15 minutes in a waiting (de-moisturizing?) room, then 15 minutes in the large room with the very large painting. Certainly time and space to appreciate the painting. When we exited, that was the end of the tour, and the guide took time to help tour members figure out how to get to wherever they were headed next.

Posted by
1068 posts

I was able to get my own tickets per RS instructions so did not take the tour. However, the experience itself is (as stated above) very controlled. They also provide an informative narrative (free I think) via a headset so I am not sure what a tour would add. For me, a "collector" of DaVinci works, it was fantastic. However, you and I are different as I enjoyed the Mona Lisa and was amused by the crowds. So just because I was thrilled by the Last Supper obviously doesn't mean you would like it and it would be a "must see" for you. I certainly would not describe my viewing of the Last Supper as relaxing and there is a barrier in front of it (a low railing if memory serves.) So if a crowd (albeit smaller than Paris) and barrier inhibits your enjoyment........

Posted by
35 posts

Lori -
It sounds like you have already decided to see The Last Supper. Great decision! I am not a religious person, in fact, I do not much care for religious art at all. However, that being said, The Last Supper was one of the most moving art pieces I have ever seen! And the viewing restrictions made it an even better experience. You are able to get within inches of the fresco and there are no crowds. Enjoy!

Posted by
13 posts

We went with Viator. It was fine but you only get 15 minutes in a small group as will be the same for all of the tours. The Viator adds on a walking tour which is really one art museum and a walk to the last Supper. Having a tour guide was definitely value added. I think that there are other frescoes in Italy that are in much better condition and more artistic but I suppose that The Last Supper is in the must see category.