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The Sistine Chapel in Vatican City is home to some of the world’s most famous frescoes painted by Michelangelo and other famous artists.

Michelangelo’s paintings cover both the ceiling and the western wall of the chapel. The paintings “The Creation of Adam” and “The Last Judgment” are two of the most famous artworks and are admired by around 5 million visitors each year.

The Sistine Chapel may not look so impressive on the outside, but on the inside are some of the world’s most impressive paintings. This is an attraction you do not want to miss during your stay in Rome. Down below you can read more about the chapel and useful information before you visit.


Tickets to the Sistine Chapel

It costs 16 euros for adults and 8 euros for students and children between 6-18 years to visit the Sistine Chapel. It’s free to enter for children under 6 years old.

The last Sunday of the month is free admission to the chapel. Note that this is a time many people choose to visit, so expect long queues and lots of people.

To avoid standing in long queues, make sure to book your tickets in advance. You can book your ticket via the link below which also includes skip-the-line tickets to the Vatican Museums and St. Peter’s Church.

Book skip-the-line tickets here

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Photo: ira_kalina / Shutterstock.com

Inside the Sistine Chapel

The interior of the Sistine Chapel is absolutely beautiful. Both the ceiling and the walls are covered with beautiful frescoes, which are painted by Michelangelo, Botticelli, Perugino, and Luca, among others.

It was Michelangelo who painted the ceiling of the chapel. He created all these paintings over four years, between 1508 and 1512. Two of the most famous artworks are “The Creation of Adam” and “The Last Judgment”, both painted by Michelangelo.

art inside the Sistine Chapel

Photo: S-F / Shutterstock.com

michelangelo art

Photo: Creative Lab / Shutterstock.com

the Sistine Chapel art

Photo: JurateBuiviene / Shutterstock.com

More about the Sistine Chapel

The Sistine Chapel was built between 1473-1481 and was opened in 1483. It was the Pope Sixtus IV who built the chapel with help from the architect Giovanni dei Dolci.

The chapel is rectangular in shape with brick walls and 6 beautiful arched windows on each side. The outside of the chapel is quite dull in appearance, so it’s hard to believe that such beautiful paintings are hiding on the inside.

The paintings on the walls inside the chapel were painted between 1481 and 1483 by Perugino, Pinturicchio, Sandro Botticelli, Domenico Ghirlandaio and Cosimo Rosselli, among others.

The famous ceiling was painted by Michelangelo between 1508 and 1512, and the painting the Last Judgment on the western wall was painted by Michelangelo between 1534 and 1541.

In 1989, the 10-year restoration of the paintings on the ceiling was completed. They removed hundred years of dirt from the paintings, and thanks to that, today we can see the original beauty.

Facts about the Sistine Chapel

  • Height: 20.7 m
  • Area: 13.4 m
  • Opened: 15th of August, 1483
  • Location: Vatican City
  • Visitors: Around 5 million visitors each year

Intressant facts

  • Around 5 million people visit the chapel each year
  • The Sistine Chapel is best known for Michelangelo’s frescoes
  • It took 4 years for Michelangelo to complete the paintings on the ceiling
  • The paintings in the chapel cover an area of 464 square meters
  • The chapel is 500 years old and is still used for its original purpose
  • You can see Michelangelo’s picture of God in 6 of the paintings inside the chapel
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View from St. Peter’s Church / Photo: Shutterstock

Good to know before visiting

Before you visit, there are some things that are good to know. There is, among other things, a dress code in the Vatican City that you should follow, otherwise there’s a chance that the guards can deny you to visit.

You should cover your shoulders and knees, and not wear deep v sweaters or caps/hats.

Inside the Sistine Chapel, you’re not allowed to take any photos. If a guard sees you taking a photo of the paintings they will ask you to remove the photos and can also ask you to leave.

It’s also important to show respect inside the chapel. It’s a sacred place and therefore it’s important to talk quietly.

Opening hours

  • Monday-Saturday: 09.00-18.00 (ticket office closes at 16.00)
  • Sunday: Closed, except for the last Sunday every month (09.00-14.00)

Hotels nearby the Sistine Chapel

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Hotel Raphaël-Relais & Châteaux with a view of Vatican City


Do you have more questions about the Sistine Chapel? Leave a comment below!