Small Group Vatican Tour

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Sep 5th, 2017, 11:49 AM
  #1
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Join Date: Sep 2017
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Small Group Vatican Tour

I've looked at Viator and Carriani, the two Vatican partners (the third one, Trafalgar, only does multi day tours). We want to go in before the skip the line groups in a 12 person max tour specifically so I can see the Sistine Chapel in the quiet. When I look at reviews on Trip Advisor and Yelp, they are lukewarm at best. I eliminate reviews with only one or two prior reviews because I know there is now a whole industry built around paying people to write bogus 5 star reviews. After eliminating those, it's not pretty. Anyone have other suggestions? This is #1 on my bucket list so I really want to have the best possible experience. HELP!!
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Sep 5th, 2017, 12:06 PM
  #2
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
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I have not done this tour but my friends enjoyed their Context Tour of the Vatican. They are pricey but well respected.
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Sep 5th, 2017, 12:12 PM
  #3
 
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Visitor isn't a "partner" they're a reseller of the actual partners. I think my tour was with Roman guy or something like dark Rome. Pretty sure it was Roman guy. I bet Viator is selling those tours because the description is pretty much identical.

I would do context though. That would be only 6 people. In the intense crowds of the Vatican, 12 In a group was too large of a tour. And the context tour guides were a lot more professional than my Vatican tour guide. I think that lady was in the verge of burn out- can't blame her, can't imagine doing the Vatican tour every day.
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Sep 5th, 2017, 01:15 PM
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Join Date: Mar 2013
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We have used Vatican Tours & Beyond in the past and it worked out well for us.

https://www.vaticantoursinc.com/
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Sep 5th, 2017, 02:20 PM
  #5
 
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Context!!
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Sep 5th, 2017, 02:53 PM
  #6
 
Join Date: Nov 2014
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Not sure if this is what you are looking for but Walks of Italy has the Pristine Sistine Vatican tour. We did it 3 years ago. Was excellent and got in before everyone else.
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Sep 5th, 2017, 11:34 PM
  #7
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
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We did this with Italy With Us five years ago. We were there for 8am, had the glorious Map Room almost entirely to ourselves as we passed through and 20 minutes in the empty Sistine Chapel. There were only 7 in our group so we were upgraded from the two hour tour which I had booked, to the longer one which included touring St Peter's. It was so worth doing.
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Sep 6th, 2017, 02:15 AM
  #8
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Great responses! Keep 'em coming!
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Sep 6th, 2017, 04:48 AM
  #9
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
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I'll second the recommendation for Italy With Us, which I took a Vatican tour with this past March. It wasn't the private Sistine Chapel tour, but it was wonderful. Cesare was the tour guide, and he was fantastic. There were 8 of us in our group.
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Sep 6th, 2017, 01:55 PM
  #10
 
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This past May, I did Walks of Italy's "Pristine Sistine". I opted for this tour based on recommendations from friends and Rick Steves guide book. With this tour, I was able to view the Sistine Chapel in a relaxed and reflective way. After hearing from someone who did not use an early entry tour and was shoulder to shoulder in the chapel, I knew that it was money well spent. When taking the tour, I noticed there were several other companies doing "early entrance" tours so you should have no problem booking and early entrance guided tour.

https://www.walksofitaly.com/vatican...ne-chapel-tour
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Sep 7th, 2017, 12:33 PM
  #11
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Ended up with Walks of Italy. They now have a morning "Pristine Sistene" called "Official Vatican Tours VIP". Since this is SO important to me and we likely won't be back in Rome again, decided to splurge and spend the 350E for two of us. I'd never have found this without the help of those on the Forum! Others looked good but either didn't have a private tour or didn't go straight into the Sistine Chapel Thanks to you all, this will make a dream come true!
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Sep 8th, 2017, 12:14 PM
  #12
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
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I recommend the Roman Guy, if you do the "Priviledged entrance" tour, you are in before most of the other tours and they go direct to the Sistine Chapel. Last time, I did the tour, there was about 25 people in the Chapel with us. We had time to just sit and take it all in.

I did a evening tour with Walks of Italy and I much preferred The Roman Guy

https://theromanguy.com/tours/Rome/S...l-Vatican-Tour
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