"Tiffany is undoubtedly the best tour guide we have ever had (and we have been on a few tours). Her insights and knowledge about art, about Vatican history, about everything having to do with the Vatican Museums, the Sistine Chapel, and St. Peter's were simply brilliant. Our appreciation of the Vatican and its art was immeasurably improved by her perceptive insights. She has a fantastic, clear, delightful speaking voice." Waswo Columbus, Ohio
On this Vatican Tour, your Presto Guide will lead you through the maze of the Vatican City and look closely at the highlights of the Vatican Museums' marvelous art collection. We will also explore the Sistine Chapel and tour inside St. Peter's Basilica. The Catholic Church has been collecting some of the most treasured art for centuries. A visit to its museums will delight you with its beloved and sometimes surprising art. The Vatican Museums were founded 500 years ago with a discovery of a sculpture in a vineyard near Rome; within a week, the sculpture was the first art piece of what became the museums' 54 galleries.
At present, the Vatican City boasts a stellar roster of artwork. The core artistry we will visit on this Vatican Tour will be by Michelangelo, Raphael and Bernini. Along the way, brace yourselves for the stories which you will hear: the historic legends, myths, scandals, and secrets of the smallest country in the world, the Vatican City.
Inside the Vatican Museums, you'll be surrounded by both ancient masterpieces such as the Belvedere Apollo, a Roman second century copy from a Greek bronze original possibly by Leochares (330-320 B.C.), and Renaissance masterpieces such as the Mass of Bolsena by Raphael. Before silently revelling your senses inside the Sistine Chapel (there is no talking allowed inside this holy site), your Presto guide will recap the Biblical Story of Creation, the Downfall of Humanity, and the Story of Noah, which Michelangelo depicted in his world-renowned frescos. Whilst exploring the making of the Sistine Chapel, we will take a peek into the politics of the Vatican City's art commissions and get to know the artists' with the help of your guide's favorite anecodotes.
Finally we will visit St. Peter's Basilica, named after St. Peter, the first Pope and the modern day patron saint of Rome. Architect Donato Bramante designed the Basilica with a precise symbolism which according to Arnaldo Bruschi can be "schematised – in accord with an ancient, mostly Byzantine tradition – as a cube (the world) with four extending arms (the four parts of the world), and a dome above it (heaven)." Inside the Basilica we will find another of Michelangelo's masterpieces, his sculpture, the Pieta', and more.
As an officially recognized partner of the Vatican Museums, Presto Tours and our guests are privy to the Vatican Museums special VIP entrance and will skip the long lines. Best of all, with our small group size of 16 guests or less, Presto Tours ensures that your Vatican visit remains an intimate, memorable experience.