Visit to St. Peter's Basilica at the Vatican: How to get there, prices and advice

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Joel Fulleda

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One of the emblems of not only Italian but world religiosity is undoubtedly the suggestive one St. Peter's Basilica at the Vatican, the largest of the four papal basilicas located in the capital, a preferred destination for believers or simple lovers of art and architecture.

There are numerous artists who worked on the realization of this Catholic masterpiece: from Twine a Raffaello, Via michelangelo and Gian Lorenzo Bernini.
Rightfully included in the list of largest buildings in the world, With its 23 thousand square meters, has a record capacity, internally, of 60 thousand people (or 20 thousand, according to conflicting sources).


  1. How to reach us
  2. Costs and timetables
  3. Visiting St. Peter's Basilica: Useful Tips
  4. Historical notes, curiosities and practical info: what to know about St. Peter's Basilica in brief
  5. User questions and comments

How to reach us

The Basilica of San Pietro al Vaticano is about 5 km from the center of Rome, a distance that can be covered by public transport in a period of time between 18 and 24 minutes approximately. On foot, the route takes significantly longer.

  • On foot: difficult, but not impossible, to reach the Basilica on foot. It takes about 45 minutes, moving northwest on Piazza della Repubblica, towards Via Vittorio Emanuele Orlando - Get directions
  • By bus: bus n ° 64 from the Repubblica stop (MA) allows you to reach the attraction in about 21 minutes
  • By metro: the orange metro line from the Repubblica station, with a stop in Ottaviano, allows you to reach the Basilica in about 18 minutes

Costs and timetables

St. Peter's Basilica is a real one mine of artistic works inside, among which we can mention the very famous Bernini's canopy Pietà by Michelangelo and the bronze statue of St. Peter. Access to the sacred place is free, while there is an entrance ticket to reach the very high dome, a real must for visitors to the Basilica.

  • 1 October to 31 March 07:00 - 18:30; from 1 April to 30 September 07:00 - 19:00. The dome is accessible from 1 October to 31 March 08:00 - 17:00; from 1st April to 30th September 08:00 - 18:00
  • Ticket for the Basilica: access to the Basilica is free
  • Ticket for the Dome: € 10,00 (including lift to the terrace level and continue on foot for 320 steps); € 8,00 (walking up the 551 steps leading to the dome); Reductions are available for schools upon presentation of proof at the cash desk (€ 5,00)

Tours, guided tours and tickets online

  • Skip-the-line entrance to the Basilica with audio guide: from € 20,00 per person, see the offer
  • Guided tour of the Vatican Museums, Sistine Chapel and St. Peter's: from € 50,00 per person, see the offer
  • Priority entrance to the Vatican Museums and the Sistine Chapel: from € 29,00 per person, see the offer

Visiting St. Peter's Basilica: Useful Tips

Entering the evocative St. Peter's Basilica in the Vatican could prove to be a sort of mission impossible. Don't worry, though: by following very simple tips it will be possible to access the attraction in a reasonable time and without particular hitches.

  1. Get up early: the queues at the entrance could be endless. Please arrive at least one hour before the Basilica opens
  2. Priority ticket: booking a visit to the Basilica in advance will allow you to avoid long lines and fully enjoy the beauty of the attraction, with some benefits included. An audio guide is also available
  3. Watch out for restrictions: inside the attraction it is strictly forbidden to enter with uncovered shoulders and legs: clothing appropriate to the sacredness of the place is required all year round, under penalty of impossibility to access the Basilica
  4. Minimum time: dedicate at least a couple of hours of your time to visit the Basilica and the dome
  5. Disabled access: access to the dome could be limiting for people with reduced mobility or with disabilities, due to the spiral shape and the steepness of the stairs, which are rather narrow

Historical notes, curiosities and practical info: what to know about St. Peter's Basilica in brief

It houses the remains of St. Peter, first Pontiff in Christian history, the homonymous Basilica that today the whole world knows and envies us located in the Vatican, built between 1506 and 1626, from the ashes of the most archaic version of the extraordinary religious building, dating back to around 320 and built for will of Constantine.
Numerous, as noted above, the artists who contributed to the construction of the imposing attraction. The elegant dome, which contributes to exponentially increase the height of the Basilica, was made by Michelangelo.

The exterior of the Basilica is characterized by the extraordinary colonnade consisting of 284 columns in Doric style and with 88 TiFlights travertine pillars, which welcome tourists, religious or otherwise, in an ideal, deep embrace. Inside the building you will be entranced by artistic works of the highest quality, such as the famous Michelangelo's Pietà. The interior of the structure is divided into four levels: the walkable floor of the building; the Vatican Grottoes, on the lower floor; the floor of the primitive Constantine basilica; the ancient countryside plan, also from the Constantine period.

With its 218 meters long and over 133 meters high (including the dome), the imposing St. Peter's Basilica is home to the main celebrations of a religious nature, such as Christmas or Easter, and the main events concerning the Holy See, such as the papal funeral or the proclamation of new Popes.

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