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St. Peter's Dome (Cupola di San Pietro)
St. Peter's Dome (Cupola di San Pietro)

St. Peter's Dome (Cupola di San Pietro)

Piazza San Pietro, Vatican City, Italy

The Basics

St. Peter’s Dome is one of the most popular sights in Rome, so booking a skip-the-line St. Peter’s Basilica (Basilica di San Pietro) tour is essential to avoid waiting in long lines, especially in the busy summer months. Tours of the dome and basilica are also included in most Vatican tours, which typically include access to the Vatican Museums, the Sistine Chapel, and the Vatican gardens. The entrance to the dome is at the portico of the basilica, and views are both internal over the basilica’s main altar and external over the city of Rome.

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Complete St Peters Basilica Tour with Dome Climb and Crypt
Likely to Sell OutLikely to Sell Out
Complete St Peters Basilica Tour with Dome Climb and Crypt
star-4.5
$40.29 per adult
Traveler Favorite
Don’t miss this tour!
Terrific, highly recommended! Ambra was amazing… exactly what you want in a guide: welcoming, funny, knowledgeable. She was a standout on our trip to Rome. Book this tour in the morning to avoid the rush of the crowds going to the dome. The stairs up can be a bit of a grind, so ensure you’re physically capable of about 500 steps at a slow-ish pace. It’s a little tight in places, too, but my wife and I (42 and 44) found it manageable. Don’t miss this tour! It was one of our favorites.
Nick_A, Aug 2022

Recent reviews from experiences in Rome

star-5
A visit to St Peter’s worth the view from the Dome
Julia_B, May 2022
Tour of St Peter's Basilica with Dome Climb and Grottoes in a Small Group
An excellent guide who kept us interested all throughout the wait to get in. We did not have long as visit was at 8.45 - well worth getting up early for. St Peter’s and the dome were fascinating but the grotto is not really interesting unless you enjoy seeing the very boring coffins of past popes. All very clean and not what you’d expect for a grotto. Otherwise a worthwhile visit.
star-5
Guide was excellent!...
Kerry_G, Aug 2022
Tour of St Peter's Basilica with Dome Climb and Grottoes in a Small Group
Guide was excellent! Don’t miss the Basilica, it is mind-blowing, and the climb is well worth it. We all agreed getting a guide is worth it.
star-5
The tour guide was...
Cindee_R, Aug 2022
St. Peter's Basilica with Vatican official guides
The tour guide was excellent. Very informative and beautiful place to visit; however to get in was not so good. We had prepaid tickets and had visited the vatican and we still had to wait in another line which took forever to find. Suggest a separate entrance for those of us have pre-paid
star-5
Highly Recommended!
Ene_H, Aug 2022
Tour of St Peter's Basilica with Dome Climb and Grottoes in a Small Group
We did this tour with our two fifteen year olds and we all thoroughly enjoyed it. The tour operator met us exactly at the assigned place at the appointed time. Guide Arturo was excellent and very knowledgeable - he really brought Rome and the Basilica to life. I would highly recommend this tour! PS the views of Rome from the dome are well worth the effort!
star-5
Last minute booking went smoothly
Stefanie_K, Aug 2022
Private Tour of St Peter's Basilica with Dome Climb and Grottoes
We booked this tour the night before because other plans had fallen out. I was so happy that everything went smoothly the next day. Our guide was so knowledgeable about the basilica and gave us a lot of history on the building and on the Catholic Church in Italy. We loved going down into the grottoes and then up into the dome. The views were spectacular from the top. It was a wonderful tour.
star-4
Beautiful view from the...
Carissa_L, Aug 2022
Early Morning St Peter’s Basilica Tour with Dome Climb
Beautiful view from the top. skip the line was a little deceiving as we still had to wait in the line but well worth it
star-5
Excellent
Mario_M, Aug 2022
St. Peter's Basilica with Vatican official guides
All was excellent, on time and the guide gave us a lot of info about the basilica that we did not know.
star-5
Better experience with a tour guide
Rosanne_R, Aug 2022
Tour of St Peter's Basilica with Dome Climb and Grottoes in a Small Group
This is my second time and I am very pleased to have a tour guide this time. Donna is very knowledgeable and answered all our questions. She’s patient and accommodating. My family enjoyed this tour very much.
star-5
The climb was amazing ....
Jessie_A, Aug 2022
Tour of St Peter's Basilica with Dome Climb and Grottoes in a Small Group
The climb was amazing . The view spectacular. So worth the effort , The entire Basilica visit was absolutely incredible.
star-5
St. Peter’s Basilica Tour
Margaret_M, Jul 2022
Private Tour of St Peter's Basilica with Dome Climb and Grottoes
Extraordinary guide, extraordinary experience! Views from the Dome were breathtaking!l The story” of the building of the Basilica were inspiring
star-5
Our guide was fantastic!...
Carol_O, Aug 2022
Tour of St Peter's Basilica with Dome Climb and Grottoes in a Small Group
Our guide was fantastic! So knowledgeable. the view from the top of the dome was amazing but not for the faint of heart.
star-5
Moving experience, great guide
Sylvia_K, Jul 2022
St. Peter's Basilica with Vatican official guides
It was very moving to be in this hallowed space. Our guide Eduardo was extremely knowledgeable and communicated the history and backstories of the architecture and artworks is a lively, engaging manner. Eduardo is one of the best guides I’ve ever had.
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Things to Know Before You Go

  • You must pass through a security check to access the dome—banned items include pocketknives, corkscrews, and umbrellas.

  • The dress code in the basilica and dome requires that shoulders and knees are covered.

  • The dome is partially accessible to wheelchair users. There is an elevator to the roof level (or you can climb the 320 steps), but only a spiral staircase provides access to the cupola at the highest point of the dome (another 200 steps).

  • Views are dizzying from the top of St. Peter’s Dome, so visiting the top is not recommended for anyone afraid of heights.

  • Kids especially enjoy the invigorating climb and views, so consider joining a small-group tour tailored to families if traveling with children.

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How to Get There

St. Peter’s Basilica is located on St. Peter’s Square (Piazza San Pietro) in Vatican City. The closest metro station is Ottaviano.

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Trip ideas


When to Get There

The dome is open to the public daily. Early morning is the best time to visit, both to beat the crowds and to catch the optimal light for photographing the view.

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St. Peter’s Dome History

Like Rome, St. Peter’s Dome wasn’t built in a day. Work began on the basilica in 1506, initially overseen by Roman architect Donato Bramante and later passed on to successors such as Raphael and Bernini. Yet it was Michelangelo who took on the task of completing the dome, proposing a design based on those of previous architects. After his death, his assistants continued the work and, in the end, it was Giacomo della Porta and Domenico Fontana, under the appointment of Pope Sixtus V, who saw the completion of the dome in 1590.

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Frequently Asked Questions
The answers provided below are based on answers previously given by the tour provider to customers’ questions.
Q:
What are the nearest attractions to St. Peter's Dome (Cupola di San Pietro)?
Q:
What else should I know about attractions in Rome?
A:
As well as visiting the St. Peter's Dome (Cupola di San Pietro), check out these trip ideas to make the most of your visit: