Go Back  Fodor's Travel Talk Forums > Destinations > Europe
Reload this Page >

New (?) tip on getting into Sistine Chapel sans reservations, same day

Notices

New (?) tip on getting into Sistine Chapel sans reservations, same day

Old Oct 18th, 2009, 11:40 PM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 29
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
New (?) tip on getting into Sistine Chapel sans reservations, same day

I went to St Peters without reservations, and like many others, I suspect, ended up in the Basilica line and the cupola line thinking it was a shortcut into the Vatican museums and the Sistine. It was the Basilica (great) and cupola line (great views), but not the museum shortcut. Leaving the Basilica, I went to the Information office next to the Post office in the square, just to ask how to get to the museums. She gave me directions, then asks " Would you like a reservation?" I said sure, what is the earliest? I can come back tomorrow morning... She says "How about today?" Really?! to get in and skip the line? "I have one in 20 minutes, then 2pm and 2:30.." Heck Yes! They charged 4 Euro extra, but it was well worth it! I got the reservation, stopped to get a bibite, and marched for 15 minutes by a long line of folks and walked right in. Separate security line, too. Saved me at least an hour, maybe two,.
Next time, I'll just go straight to the Sistine and the Vatican museums first, then the Basilica and Yes, it is really all they say it is. No photos though.
tommyp is offline  
Old Oct 18th, 2009, 11:59 PM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 12,188
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Excellent - thanks for posting this.
WillTravel is offline  
Old Oct 19th, 2009, 04:22 AM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 33,756
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
That's good to know about the info office.

It sounds like you weren't aware you could book tickets and tours online with the Vatican for the museums.
http://mv.vatican.va/3_EN/pages/MV_Home.html

The shortcut is only from the Sistine Chapel (in the museums) to St. Peter's. You can't do it in reverse since a ticket is required for museums entrance.
kybourbon is online now  
Old Oct 19th, 2009, 07:39 AM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Posts: 1,683
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
In my opinion, there is no need for a reservation for the Vatican Museum if you go after 12 PM.

Once you get into the museum and walk upstairs, the line is the same for a ticket.

It is the outside line on Via Vaticano that is the problem. The reservation line is always shorter, but after 12:00 PM the non-reservation line moves VERY guickly.

thin
Cries_Van_Notebook is offline  
Old Oct 19th, 2009, 08:03 AM
  #5  
 
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 4,074
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
During our last trip to ROme, a few weeks ago, I had made email reservations for the Vatican Museums, frankly I do not think I wish to come back ever. There were lines, waiting, the print out did not work properly for some reason which implied a delay, etc , ok I can handle all that, but the moment I reached the Sistine Chapel I felt I was part of a heard of cattle. The guards were
rude, shouting, and the place was packed. What is the point of being here>?....like this, this is how I felt. They were pushing people forward...to where? everything was packed.
A very unpleasant experience. Next time I shall go to Saint Peter, pray in there and then walk around and I am sure I shall not miss the SIstine Chapel.
Pity because I agree it is a phenomenal place, but NOT SO Crowded.
Graziella5b is offline  
Old Oct 19th, 2009, 08:39 AM
  #6  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 29
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Hi kybourbon - good tip for the online reservation and tour.. the tip is aimed at people (like me) who procrastinate and suddenly find themselves at St Peter's w/o a reservation, or too cheap to pay for a tour... like apparently hundreds of people do, judging from the line I walked past..
I've heard others say that it's shorter after noon - the day I went, was this saturday the 17th and the line was almost to the square at 1:30pm. YMMV.
tommyp is offline  
Old Oct 19th, 2009, 08:48 AM
  #7  
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 2,183
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Just before the last entry may work out, if you don't mind a short visit. Last June, I walked by the entrance around 3:30 and there was absolutely no line. I just walked in. Maybe a couple people ahead of me at the ticket booth. Most of the exhibits were close to empty and nothing was crowded. Even in the Sistine Chapel, there were only about 200 people.

The downside, of course, is that the museums close at 6. But I prefer spending no more than a few hours at a museum, I end up overwhelmed if I spend more time.
Shanti is offline  
Old Oct 19th, 2009, 09:13 AM
  #8  
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Posts: 1,683
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Another thing about the RESERVATION LINE:

Absolutely no one checked our reservation print-outs to get into this line. We didn't pull out our print-outs until we got to the ticket booth upstairs.

So, if the non-reservation line is very long, try getting in through the reservation line. I bet no one will even check you.

Thin
Cries_Van_Notebook is offline  
Old Oct 19th, 2009, 10:08 AM
  #9  
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 861
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
My husband and I accidentally got into the wrong line at the museum and did exactly what Cries_Van_Notebook is suggesting. My husband actually spotted the miles-long line, but I didn't, so I dragged him right up to the door and inside (apparently alongside a tour group).

One thing: I think it helped that I had no idea I was doing something wrong. If we'd looked around nervously or walked in without a purposeful look, I'm sure we would've been stopped. If you decide to try this, walk in with purpose.
slangevar is offline  
Old Oct 20th, 2009, 09:42 AM
  #10  
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Posts: 741
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I agree with Cries. The last time I visited the Vatican Museums it was around 1pm, and there was no line anywhere at all. This was in middle March though, so that may have been a factor.
Delaine is offline  
Old Oct 20th, 2009, 10:19 AM
  #11  
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 556
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I think it's pretty low to knowingly get in the reservation line without a reservation. Why would you "cut" other tourists who have paid their money and made their plans?
It's just rude behavior.
Lynnaustin is offline  
Old Oct 20th, 2009, 06:58 PM
  #12  
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Posts: 1,683
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I wallow in being rude and low.

Thin
Cries_Van_Notebook is offline  
Old Mar 1st, 2012, 02:43 PM
  #13  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 29
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
soo.. my tip would work if you're a procrastinator or just get inspired once there (like me) and would feel guilty walking past a (literally, on THAT day) an HOURS long line.
I tried booking online the day before, but the site would not allow it. YMMV!
tommyp is offline  
Related Topics
Thread
Original Poster
Forum
Replies
Last Post
jz166
Europe
12
Aug 23rd, 2014 03:29 AM
SpeedySinghs1
Europe
10
Feb 24th, 2012 06:25 PM
zizz
Europe
5
Aug 25th, 2010 09:16 AM
bowlsman
Europe
14
Jul 12th, 2010 06:24 AM
lifeofmytime
Europe
10
Aug 21st, 2008 12:40 PM

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Do Not Sell My Personal Information

FODOR'S VIDEO