visit/tour of Vatican

Mar 30th, 2006, 01:56 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 32
visit/tour of Vatican

Can you give me tips on the best way to see the Vatican on a trip to Rome, staying in the Pantheon area. What is the best day and best time of day? Do you recommend taking a tour? If so which one?

vumit is offline  
Mar 30th, 2006, 02:13 PM
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I had a very frustating visit to the Vatican last October. I wanted to get into the dome of St Peters and joined the fairly short line that had formed.However as I went around the next corner and the one after that I found in the end that it took one and a half hours to get to the elevator to get up near the top-but there was a substantial further climb to get to the dome.It was worth it though and I enjoyed a drink in the coffee shop which is on the roof of the basilica,at the back of the statues you can see from the square. Getting to the head of the line for the Vatican museum took three hours. It is a magnificent museum and I would like to go back but no way am I going to wait that long.Note that they do not accept credit cards and the coffee shop is not great.
Mar 30th, 2006, 02:46 PM
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 22,016
I took an inexpensive tour with EnjoyRome that allowed us to bypass the line that was long although it was January. The price of the tour was about 15E per person a few years ago and I think it is worth it to pay the price even if you ditch the tour guide after you enter. As it happens, we enjoyed the tour and we could have stayed on inside the museums after the conclusion of the tour if we had so desired.
ekscrunchy is offline  
Mar 30th, 2006, 07:34 PM
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 7,991
I booked a tour of the museum ahead of time and had an awful and confusing time before we figured out how to get to the front of the line with our reservations. The line was BLOCKS long. There weas still some "hurry up and wait" inside getting into the right places/ticket windows and small groups, but I couldn't imagine waiting in that line for hours.

However--it was an early a.m. tour; By the time we left the Vatican, there was NO line! So as I've also read in the Rick Steves materials, aim to go to these places late in the day after the day tour groups etc. have left.
annw is offline  
Mar 30th, 2006, 07:50 PM
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 581
we went last summer..we took scavi(8:30) and it ends in the crypt so then you can zip in the church easily...we just evesdropped on the tours and found that to be interesting..all differnt guides...that way we could go at our own pace I hate to be lead like cattle...then we went back to the hotel(you could eat lunch)and about 1:00 went to the museum line ..but in the morning it was all the way from the side of the basilica to the museum...what a waste of time that would have been...yes we saw evcerything except the depth in one day..
hypatia is offline  
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