max6 copy 6
This tour is guaranteed at max 6 people per group
Prefer a Private experience? View the private option here

Best Sistine Chapel Early Morning Viewing | Wednesday Semi-Private Vatican Tour

Max 6 people
2 hrs 30 mins
Refundable booking

Enjoy an early Wednesday morning small group tour of the Vatican Museums with an expert guide. Admire the majestic work of Michelangelo in the Sistine Chapel and the magnificent Raphael Rooms without the usual crowds.

Fewer people visit the Vatican Museums and Sistine Chapel on Wednesday mornings because the Pope holds audience on Wednesdays. This means there there is no access to St Peter’s Basilica from the Sistine Chapel on Wednesday mornings. Consequently, fewer people visit the Vatican Museums at this time, allowing you a far more private and relaxed viewing experience of the Sistine Chapel, Raphael Rooms, and the world-famous treasure trove of art and antiquities housed inside the halls and galleries of the palatial Vatican Museums.


  • Enter the Vatican Museums in the early morning
  • View Michelangelo’s glorious frescoes in the Sistine Chapel in private
  • See the magnificent Raphael Rooms
  • Enjoy an expertly guided tour of the Museum highlights
  • See the Laocoon, Apollo Belvedere, and end at the Painting Gallery

Semi-Private tours and experiences are guaranteed six participants max.

Our prices always include tickets and reservations fees (no waiting in lines!)

Our tour guides and staff are selected experts and speak perfect English

Easy to book and prepay your tours with our secure payment system

Eco-sustainable tourism, designed to respect and support local culture, art and traditions

Enjoy a small group early morning tour of the Vatican Museums with an expert guide and be amongst the first to enjoy the Sistine Chapel and Raphael Rooms.

Explore the vast Vatican Palaces: once home to the Popes, now a museum housing some of the most precious antiquities in the world. Works include the Apollo Belvedere and the Laocoon which inspired Michelangelo. See Nero’s vast bathtub and statues of ancient emperors, empresses, gods, and heroes. 

Walk through the Gallery of Tapestries and the Gallery of Maps: stunning and incredibly detailed frescoed maps of Italy dating to the 17th century and edged with gold leaf.  

Visit the Raphael Rooms, the private apartments of the Warrior Pope Julius II. It was he who simultaneously commissioned Raphael to paint these rooms and Michelangelo to paint the Sistine Chapel. This created their famous rivalry and inspired the creation of some of the greatest art of all time. See the famous School of Athens and the Disputa and learn about the life of the popular Raphael. 

Finally, visit the Sistine Chapel. Be among the first visitors of the day to step inside one of the great wonders of the world and stand in awe and wonder beneath Michelangelo’s magnificent frescoes. 

Your guide will explain the stories on the Ceiling, painted by Michelangelo when he was just 33. Painting the ceiling was backbreaking work that took him four years. You’ll see for yourself the incredible painting of God creating Adam – truly breathtaking. Then, admire the Last Judgement, filled with literally hundreds of muscular figures – saints and sinners, with the mighty figure of Christ towering above all, completed by Michelangelo in his sixties. In all, he spent a decade of his life painting in the Sistine Chapel! 

After plenty of time to soak it all in, your guide will show you to the exquisite collection of paintings in the Pinacoteca: a collection that includes masterpieces by Leonardo, Raphael, and Caravaggio. 

A Wednesday morning is the best day to visit the Vatican Museums because the Pope holds his weekly Audience on Wednesdays. This means access to the Basilica from the Museums is usually blocked off on Wednesdays and so there are far fewer visitors to the Museums. 

For those who want to wait, you may wish to have lunch in the Vatican Museums restaurant after your guided tour and visit the Basilica in the afternoon once the Pope’s audience has concluded.


  • Early morning tour of the Vatican Museums
  • Semi-Private tour with an expert guide
  • See the beautiful Sistine Chapel & Raphael Rooms
  • Pinecone Courtyard & Octagonal Courtyard
  • Galleries of the Candelabra, Tapestries & Maps
  • Pinacoteca with Masterpieces

  • On Wednesday morning St. Peter’s Basilica is closed, which means less crowds, but also that you will not be able to access the Basilica until after the tour ends.
  • Places of worship have strict dress code requirements for entry. All participants are required to have shoulders and knees covered (no tank tops or short dresses) to enter.
  • Vatican management maintains the right to delay the opening of the Sistine Chapel for religious reasons, in this case the guide will modify the itinerary and extend your visit of the museums to ensure you make the most of your time before access to the Sistine Chapel is permitted.
  • There is no photography allowed in the Sistine chapel, and all other artwork can only be photographed without flash.
  • Please be aware that the Sistine Chapel is a Holy Place and talking during your visit inside is strictly forbidden, therefore your guide will give you an explanation of the Sistine Chapel beforehand during your tour, in order to give you a comprehensive explanation before entering the chapel.
  • Backpacks are not permitted in the Museum.
  •  Everyone in your group, regardless of age, needs a government issued ID to enter the Vatican Museums.

LivTours’ group size of max 6 participants is and always has been based on sustainable travel, and we are proud to be at the forefront of change and innovation in the industry.  LivTours is committed to providing travelers with truly sustainable tours with the lowest possible environmental impact, all while supporting the local industries and people of each unique destination. To learn more about how you can actively support sustainable tourism  and how LivTours is contributing, click here.


All LivTours Semi-Private Group Tours are limited to 6 guests per tour guide. Our commitment to maintaining our uniquely tiny group sizes can sometimes be a little tricky, mathematically speaking. For example, we want to ensure that traveling families and friends can tour together so on rare occasions we may add one or two guests in order to not split groups. On that same note, you may also find yourself on tour with less than six people! We thank you for your understanding and flexibility.




By selecting Choose Dates Later / Buy as Gift at booking, any tour can be purchased without fixed dates. This is the perfect option if you want to purchase your tour as a gift for a loved one, or if you are in the pre-planning phase of your vacation. After booking, you will receive a Travel Voucher Code and full instructions on how to schedule your tours when ready. Once your travel plans are confirmed, you can easily use the Travel Voucher Code on the LivTours website to formally schedule your tours. You can find out more here.