Vatican Museums and Piazzas of Rome

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  • Full day shore excursion with private guide and private driver.
  • Visit Spanish Steps and Trevi Fountain
  • Tour the Pantheon
  • Visit Piazza Navona with lunch at Campo dei Fiori
  • Visit the Vatican Museums St. Peter’s Basilica and The Sistene Chapel with guide and skip-the-line tickets

From Civitavecchia, you will travel by luxury minibus, with an English speaking driver to meet your guide at the Piazza di Spagna and begin your tour at the base of the Spanish Steps, the grand staircase leading up to the 16th century church, Trenita dei Monte. Built in the 18th century, this is one of the most popular meeting places in Rome.  On the way to the Pantheon, you will stop at the Trevi Fountain, the largest and most famous Baroque fountain in Rome which, as the terminus of the Aqua Virgo (one of the original aqueducts of ancient Rome) provided water to its citizens for over 400 years.

Next, you will take a tour of the Pantheon, truly one of the most impressive architectural marvels of Rome.  The dome remains the largest unenforced cement dome ever built and your guide will share with you the mystery of its design and its significance in architectural history.  Just a few blocks away you will come to Piazza Navona, home to Bernini’s Fontana dei Quattro Fiumi, as well as Fontana del Moro and the Fountain of Neptune, both begun by Giacomo della Porta. The piazza resides on the site of the Stadium of Domitian (86AD), Rome’s first permanent venue for competitive athletics (usually footraces).  Another short walk brings you to Campo di Fiori where you may choose to have fresh oven pizza or focaccia at the local bakery, take a seat at one of the restaurants located around the piazzas or you can pick up some fresh produce from the market’s vendors.

After lunch, you are off to the Vatican Museums to skip the line with your guide for a 2:00 pm entrance where  you will explore the most impressive collections of art and treasures in the world, spanning from Etruscan, Roman and Egyptian antiquity through contemporary times, here you will find works by history’s greatest artists.  The Stanze di Raffaello (Raphael’s Rooms), Michelangelo’s masterpiece The Sistine Chapel and the Pieta as well as Bernini’s Papal canopy in St. Peter’s Basilica all represent the finest of the Renaissance in Rome. At 5:30 pm you will return to the dock in Civitavecchia.

SUNDAY

Since the Vatican is closed on Sunday, you will meet your guide at the Pantheon to begin with a tour inside before walking to the Piazza Navona and driving to the Piazza di Spagna for lunch (the markets at Campo de Fiori are also closed on Sun.).  After lunch, you will visit the Trevi Fountain and drive to the Borghese Gallery for a 2:00 pm entrance. This remarkable collection, begun by Cardinal Scipione Borghese, includes works by Bernini, Caravaggio, Titian, Raphael, Peter Paul Rubens and many more.  This is one of the most popular art museums in Rome.  Your final stop will be St. Peter’s Square and a visit (if possible*) inside St. Peter’s Basilica, where you will see the works of the Italian masters, Michelangelo’s Pieta and Dome, Bernini’s Baldacchino, and the Transfiguration by Raphael, along with many others.   At 5:30 pm you will return to the dock in Civitavecchia.

*The reality is that a visit inside can be unpredictable due to size of the crowd on any given Sunday.  When the Vatican is closed there is increased pressure on St. Peter’s, (which does not have no-stand-in-line ticketing) we feel you should know that there is a chance that entry is not possible.

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