The Sistine Chapel is one of the most recognized spots in Rome. Chapel’s ceilings are covered by Michelangelo’s mesmerizing frescos.  The celestial paintings create an unworldly experience in the Vatican church.

The church is mostly packed with sightseers who seem lost in the details of mural painting.  Although, overcrowding is irritating yet this Church has calmed our souls every time. Let us discuss some of the best tips to explore the Sistine Chapel.

Take note of the expenses

You do not have to incur an exclusive fee to visit the church after paying for the Museums. Beware of frauds who try to sell tickets for an entree into the church.  The ticket to museums is 17 Euros but you will have to wait for at least 3 hours in a queue. It’s better to book tickets online which comes with an extra fee of 4 Euros. You can also walk straight into the chapel but it would be an insult to the beautiful museums.

However, the website for booking tickets is terrible. Usually, travelers are not able to book tickets in the first try. We advise you to visit the Chapel on Friday nights in summers to avoid crowds. You can also buy passes for guided tours for fewer than 100 Euros.  Not only will you skip the lines but you will also get to know more about the history of this place.

How to reach the Chapel

You will have to visit the Vatican museums to enter into the chapel. It’s located inside the Apostolic Palace which can only be accessed via the Museums.  You can also take a self-guided tour as there are plenty of boards and signs throughout the Vatican City. However, the route to the Chapel is not so easy and you may feel a bit exhausted.  Also, you will not be allowed to exit from the same door you entered into the church.  We advise you to start your journey from the museums as you won’t be able to visit the chapel after entering St. Peter’s.

Dress appropriately

The chapel is a holy and historical place and the management does not entertain excessive skin show.  You are bound to fully cover your knees and shoulders.  There are lots of vendors who sell scarves to ignorant tourists.  You are not allowed to click pictures or carry a camera inside the church. The guards have been known to yell at people who try to behave otherwise.

Know the timings

The Sistine Chapel closes 30 minutes before the Vatican Museums.  You can enter the museums from Monday to Saturday from 9 am to 6 pm. Guards will not allow any entrance after 4 pm.  On special Friday nights, you can remain in the chapel till 10:30 pm. There is a special tour to the church from 7 am before the museums are opened for the public.  Also, you cannot attend mass at the church unless you are connected to the Vatican.

You can book online tickets on the Visit Vatican Info website.