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Spend One Day in Vatican City – 5 Things to See 2024

Vatican City is an independent city-state located in Rome, Italy. The Vatican is the capital of the catholic church and the Pope’s home. It’s also one of the things you should absolutely not miss out on if you’re traveling to Rome. That’s why we have put together a list of things you need to see if you plan on spending one day in Vatican City.

Here you’ll find everything that should be put on your list of Vatican attractions. In addition to that, we have gathered all the best ticket and tour options, so you don’t have to go through the tedious task of trying to find the best option available. Continue reading and plan your perfect day at the Vatican City.

How to Visit Vatican City in One Day?

Although there is a lot to see, the Vatican can definitely be visited in one day. You should, however, come prepared. We are here to help you create your perfect Vatican City itinerary!

Keep reading to find out the best way to visit the Papacy.

Tips for Visiting Vatican in One Day

Follow our tips to make the most out of your day spent in Vatican City!

Decide what you want to see.

It may seem like Vatican City is little and you don’t really have to plan what you’ll visit inside of it. But keep in mind that you’ll spend a few hours sightseeing in each location. So make sure to check beforehand what is there to see inside of the Vatican City and make sure you set aside enough time to truly enjoy seeing each attraction. You can have a look at our insightful guide with all the best tips for visiting Vatican City.

Set aside enough free time.

This tip is probably the most important one! Don’t forget to schedule enough free time between sightseeing so you can get a bit of rest and have some food. Although the Vatican is the world’s smallest country, there are plenty of things to see, and it will take the better portion of your day. As we’ve already mentioned above.

You’ll spend at least 3 hours only exploring the Vatican Museums, so make sure you have enough break in between visiting each Vatican attraction. That way you’ll avoid getting overwhelmed and you’ll be able to have a truly enjoyable time in the Vatican City.

visit vatican
collonade vatican

Make an itinerary

Even if you’re not much of a planner, set a loose itinerary for your day in Vatican City. Following our first two tips for visiting Vatican City in one day, come up with at least a loose itinerary for your visit. You don’t need to strictly adhere to it, but a schedule for the day will help you orient yourself around the Vatican.

Book tours and tickets in advance

After you’ve decided what you want to see in the Vatican it’s time to book your tickets or tours. We highly advise you to purchase your attraction tickets or a guided tour online. That way you can get great deals on skip-the-line tickets and avoid long lines at the entrance, so you won’t waste any time at the Vatican. 

One thing that we certainly advise you to do is – book a tour of the Vatican Museums! The galleries inside the museum are vast, and it can get a bit overwhelming if you are going on your own. And you could feel lost by not knowing what to look at. You can also tour the Vatican Museums on your own, but we recommend you purchase a ticket that includes an audio guide.

€ 52
€ 41,60
Exclusive access


Vatican Underground Scavi Tour


Explore the Vatican underground and descend beneath St Peter's Basilica. During the 1.5 - 2 hour exclusive underground tour, you will discover the tomb of St. Peter and other tombs and crypts where popes and royalty are buried.

€ 100
€ 85
Top pick

exclusive tour

Sistine Chapel Tour


Discover Michelangelo's famous paintings in the Sistine Chapel with a professional historian guide & learn about the techniques Michelangelo used to create his well-known frescoes," The Last Judgement" and "The Creation of Adam." Experience the Chapel's peaceful atmosphere and get an up-close view of its iconic Renaissance ceiling.

Make sure to dress appropriately.

Don’t forget to look up and follow the dress code for Vatican City and its attractions. All the planning can go to waste if you don’t follow a few simple rules for what is appropriate to wear inside the Vatican. 

Don’t wear revealing clothes, which means no shorts or dresses above the knee length. You also need to cover your shoulders also keep in mind that flip-flops are not appropriate footwear for Vatican City. You can, however, wear sandals, but we do recommend you wear some comfortable walking shoes.

5 Things to See in the Vatican City 2024

1. St Peter’s Basilica & Square

St Peter Square and the Basilica of St Peter are probably the most iconic sights to visit in Vatican City. These are unavoidable attractions that you must see. The good news is that you can enter the basilica for free if you’d like a quick peek inside.

2. Vatican Museums

The Vatican Museums contain some of the most incredible greek and roman art. Inside you can see the School of Athens fresco Raphael Sanzio, Emperor Hadrian’s bust, Gallery of Geographical Maps, Raphael’s Rooms, and much more.

beautiful vatican garden and dome

3. Sistine Chapel

The Sistine Chapel is located at the end of Vatican Museums, and a visit to the chapel is included in every Vatican Museum ticket or tour you purchase. Discover the iconic ceiling of the Sistine Chapel that Pope Julius II commissioned Michaelangelo to paint and marvel at the beautiful frescoes.

4. Vatican Gardens

The Gardens of Vatican City are located in the west of the Vatican’s territory and are made up of parks and urban gardens owned by the Pope. The Vatican Gardens cover more than half of the Vatican and are absolutely stunning.

5. Castel Sant’Angelo

Include a visit to the Castel Sant’Angelo on your Vatican in a one-day schedule. Visit the Castle weather on your way to the papacy, or make it the last stop of your little day trip to the Vatican.

Find the best tours of Vatican City and book them online right away!