Guided tour

Rome: St. Peter’s Basilica, Dome Climb, and Underground Tour

Activity provider: City Wonders Ltd.

Rome: St. Peter’s Basilica, Dome Climb, and Underground Tour

Activity provider: City Wonders Ltd.
Likely to sell out

From US$ 35.59 per person

Likely to sell out

Discover St. Peter’s Basilica from a new perspective as you climb to the top of the dome. Then follow your guide to explore the stunning interior and the Vatican crypts.

About this activity

Free cancellation
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Duration 3 hours
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Live tour guide


  • Climb to the highest point in the Vatican City and enjoy spectacular views
  • Experience the famous splendor of the dome from the first level balcony
  • Enjoy fast access to the basilica when you descend and avoid the lines
  • Make the most of your visit with a guided tour of the basilica and vatican crypts
  • Learn about the Renaissance era from an expert English-speaking guide
Full description

Experience St. Peter's Basilica from the top of the dome and admire views of the Vatican and Rome. Follow your guide to see the dome's interior and the Vatican crypts.

Meet your guide in St. Peter’s Square, then head up to the first level of the dome to the viewing balcony. Admire the array of incredible mosaics depicting the saints, the magnificent Latin scripts which circle the dome, and the top of Bernini’s 3-story canopy below.

Listen to your guide share facts and stories about the history of the dome, and everything you need to know about the Dome’s artists and Renaissance splendor. From the first level, take the spiral staircase to the top of the dome and enjoy some free time to explore at your own pace. Then head above the double structure of the dome and pass by windows that give a tantalizing glimpse of the Vatican rooftops below.

After 320 steps find yourself on the viewing platform 448 feet above the basilica floor. From the highest point within the Vatican, admire breathtaking and panoramic views of the city, including the Vatican Gardens below.

Looking into the distance, you can also marvel at the monuments of ancient Rome, including the Colosseum and the Pantheon. The only point above you is the cross containing the timbers from the True Cross. When you leave the dome there is no need to line up again to get inside the basilica, the stairs bring you directly down to the basilica floor so you can avoid the long lines which you’ll have seen growing across St. Peter’s Square from the top.

With your guide, navigate through the basilica, admiring the array of statues, chapels, and pilgrim sites located here, before descending to the underground crypts. Here, you can see where hundreds of popes and members of royalty have been buried since the 11th century.

  • Guided tour
  • Entrance to St. Peter’s Dome, St. Peter’s Basilica, underground crypts and pope’s tombs
  • Headsets where appropriate, so you can always hear your guide
  • Tips (optional)
  • Hotel pickup and drop-off
Not suitable for
  • Wheelchair users

Select participants and date



Meeting point

Piazza della Città Leonina, near the arches, where the square meets via di Porta Angelica. Facing the arches, our meeting point is located at the corner of the square, on the left-hand side, next to the kiosk.

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Important information

What to bring

  • Comfortable shoes

Not allowed

  • Shorts
  • Weapons or sharp objects
  • Luggage or large bags
  • Short skirts
  • Sleeveless shirts
  • Unaccompanied minors

Know before you go

  • All visitors must pass through airport-style security, during high season the wait at security may be up to 30 minutes
  • The dome’s elevator takes you to the first terrace, to climb to the top of the dome you will have to use the stairs (320 steps)
  • Please allow yourself approximately 20 extra minutes if you wish to climb up to the dome
  • This tour is not suitable for those who suffer from claustrophobia and/or vertigo, heart or other serious medical conditions
  • Government-imposed COVID restrictions for entering countries and venues (e.g. booster shot, negative COVID test, vaccine certificate with a QR code…) may change with little notice. It is the responsibility of all visitors to ensure they check the official travel advice on the government websites and comply with each country’s requirements
  • City Wonders will not be held responsible for refused access to museums and tourist attractions and no refund will be due
Customer reviews

Overall rating

4.4 /5

based on 764 reviews

Review summary

  • Guide
  • Value for money
  • Service
  • Organization

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Star rating:

We selected the guide in English but it was very difficult to understand, she spoke all slurred and it was not possible to understand half of what she explained! I've had other guides in English who understood everything! But with this one it was pretty boring and hard to understand! We ended up staying with the group just to enjoy the whole place but we continued without the headphones for the explanation! We had access to the top of the basilica which was amazing! The entire Vatican was incredible and as we arrived at 8am, we were able to get in very quickly! When we left at 10am the queue to get in was kilometric! Even in January! So I recommend you buy the first ticket early to save your time and enjoy the Vatican a lot!

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January 28, 2023

Our tour guide Salvatore or Sal for short was amazing! Extremely knowledgeable and funny. Inside the basilica is beautiful and so worth it to get a tour to unleash all the secrets and beauty’s of the structure. Security check was a bit long because they had 3 lines open instead of 4 as per usual and Salvatore was so kind to extend our tour time, even though the wait time for security has nothing to do with the tour duration

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January 17, 2023

I booked through this site because it was no longer bookable through the Vatican's official site, but it's not worth the money. The only nice thing was the guide. Sabine is a very nice and sympathetic woman who explained everything in very good English. Furthermore, it is not worth it because you could buy your ticket for the Dome (10 euros) at the box office and despite the fact that we already had tickets (Sabine then) we had to spend more than an hour!!?? waiting in line. You only pay a lot for the guide because the basilica can be viewed for free. The site states that nicely indicated tickets for the Sistine Chapel and the dome, but the first is free and can be viewed without a queue, and for the second you pay 10 euros at the box office. In short, DON'T.

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January 4, 2023

Product ID: 278782