Key Master's Tour: Open The Sistine Chapel

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Full details

For the first time ever, the Vatican Museums are allowing guests to travel with the Key Master as they perform their daily ritual - opening up the extensive network of galleries including the Sistine Chapel. Join us for two exclusive hours inside the world's most revered museum.

Our guide to Key Master's Tour: Open The Sistine Chapel

Just before the sun rises over Rome, a small group gathers for a truly once-in-a-lifetime experience. Soon they will greet the Vatican Museum's Key Master - the individual responsible for opening the seemingly endless web of galleries filled with some of the world's most pristine works of art - including the Sistine Chapel.

Entering with a group of 20 (or less), our new VIP Key Master's Tour: Open The Sistine Chapel is the only tour of its kind. As you pass through the Pope's palace, lights flicker on and illuminate works by Raphael, Michelangelo, and other Master artists. An official Vatican guide joins as well, adding color and character to these hallowed halls. Along the way, they will introduce you to famed frescos, marble sculptures, and artifacts of grandiose proportions. Void of the daily crowds, you will appreciate the time and space given in one of the world's most revered spaces.

A highlight, for sure, is the small wooden doors leading into the Sistine Chapel. It is here the Key Master graciously allows our guests a chance to turn the key and pry open the old doors, just as cardinals and popes have done for centuries. Beyond the doors the celestial figures of Michelangelo, Botticelli, and Perugino await your arrival.


Please meet your guide at Vatican Museums Entrance, Rome, 00120, IT


2 hours

Terms and conditions

Terms and conditions for Key Master's Tour: Open The Sistine Chapel

  • You will receive a voucher for this experience. Please read it thoroughly.
  • Itinerary subject to change without notice.
  • Gratuities to guides are appreciated but never obligatory. 
  • This is a walking tour. Guests should be able to walk at a moderate pace without difficulty.
  • Comfortable walking shoes are recommended.
  • Please note that the tour meeting time is 15 minutes prior to the start time. No refunds or re-bookings can be provided for late arrivals or no shows after tour commencement or departure.
  • Hotel pick-up/drop-off is NOT included. 
  • Only small backpacks and handbags are allowed inside the Vatican Museums. Storage for small items is available.
  • Due to the religious nature of the Vatican, all individuals regardless of gender must cover their shoulders and knees. We cannot be held responsible for those denied entry.
  • While the Vatican Museums are equipped with elevators for wheelchair and stroller access, they are not conveniently located on the group tour route and only give access to specific sections of the Museums. Please contact us to make further arrangements.
  • Please ensure that all members of your party have a valid ID on them on the day of the visit. This is particularly important for guests who have qualified for child reduction.
  • Cancellation policy: Cancellations received greater than 72 hours prior to tour commencement are fully refundable. Cancellations received within 72 hours of tour commencement are non-refundable. Amendment requests are subject to availability and price changes.


Frequently Asked Questions for Key Master's Tour: Open The Sistine Chapel

Can I bring a bag into the Vatican Museums?

Yes, as long as it's within a certain size. You cannot bring any bag, backpack suitcase or container larger that 40cm x 35cm x 15cm into the Vatican Museums. In fact, size limits apply to all items; because of the sheer number of people that visit the Museums, space is at a premium. You can not enter with medium to large umbrellas, any umbrellas with spiked tips, camera tripods, signage (apart from signs used by certified guides) or walking sticks – except those required by disabled visitors. All of these items can be left in the cloakroom, which is located at the entrance to the Museums.

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