Vatican Necropolis Info & Hours
|Credits: image By digitalisiert von Mogadir – Pietro Zander; Fabbrica di San Pietro (Hrsg.): The Necropolis under St. Peter’s Basilica in the Vatican.2010, ISBN 978-88-7369-081-8., CC BY 3.0, Link|
The Vatican Necropolis stands nearly 32 feet below St. Peter’s Basilica, under the Vatican Grottoes, and must not be confused with the Necropolis of Via Triumphalis an underground cemetery of members of the poorer classes, located between the Vatican City and Castel Sant’Angelo.
The Vatican Necropolis under St. Peter’s is also known in Italian as the “Scavi” of St. Peter’s, because of the excavations sponsored by the Vatican that occurred between 1939 and 1949 under Pius XII.
This necropolis is especially known for being the early burial place of St. Peter the Apostle and for housing what are believed to be his remains. The Highlight of the visit are the (alleged) remains of St. Peter Apostle.
Visit to the Vatican Necropolis under the St Peter’s Basilica (or Tour of the Scavi) must be arranged directly with the Excavations Office.
Early reservation is highly recommended due to the limited number of people admitted at a time. Groups size vary from 10 to 15 people. The tour lasts 1,5 hours and is accessible only by people older than 15 years old.
Keep reading the “How to visit” section for info, price, and reservation!
Visit St. Peter’s Basilica after the Scavi Tour skipping the line
At the end of Scavi Tour the guide will allow you to pass straight into the Popes’ Tombs Area (Vatican Grottoes). From there you can walk by the entrance to St. Peter’s Basilica. You will see the steps of the Basilica on your left as you walk toward the exit. Make a left turn up the steps and enter the Basilica. This way you will bypass all the people waiting in line to see the church.
|Opening Hours: From Monday to Friday 9.00 am - 6.00 pm / Saturday 9.00 am - 5.00 pm|
|Best Time To Visit: depends on availabilities|
|Accessibility: Not Accessible|
|Restrictions for kids: they must be older than 15|
How to Visit
1PLAN YOUR VISIT IN ADVANCE
– Early reservation is highly recommended due to the limited number of people admitted at a time. Groups size vary from 10 to 15 people. The tour lasts 1,5 hours.
Reservations must be made in writing only by fax or email firstname.lastname@example.org. The request must contain compulsorily the following information:
1. Exact number of participants;
2. Names of participants;
3. Language requested;
4. Possible dates *when the Excavations Office can assign your visit (the time will be determined by the Office). *please always write in full the name of the month (e.g.: from 01 January 2013 to 08 January 2013)
5. E-mail address, or fax number, or a complete postal address
3DRESS CODE AND INFO BEFORE VISITING
The day of your visit you should arrive at the Excavations Office at least 10 minutes before the scheduled time. The Excavations Office is located on the Via Paolo VI (outside of the Colonnade, just to the south [left], near the entrance to the General Audience Hall.) Upon arrival, present the Swiss Guards with your letter of confirmation received from the Office which indicates the scheduled time of your visit.
Clothing should be appropriate for a sacred place: long trousers/slacks/jeans for men; dresses that reach below the knees or long trousers/slacks/jeans for women; shoulders must be covered for all.
Luggage, large bags, backpacks and cameras are not allowed inside. There’s a deposit available and is free of charge.
On Sunday and Vatican Holidays (1st and 6 January / December: 8; from 24 to 27; 31st / February 11 / March 13 and 19 / 17 to 23 April / May 1st and 29 / June 19 and 29 / from 14 to 16 August / 1 and 2 November /
Monday-Friday 9:00 am – 6:00 pm
Saturday: 9:00 am – 5:00 pm
NOTE: Normally, the last visit start at 15:30 (16:15 April to September)
The cost of the individual ticket, including the contribution for the Guide, is 13€ (approximately $ 16.50 USD)*
No reductions in price will be given for any reason.
Requests may be submitted in written form by fax +39 06 69873017, or by visiting the Excavations Office in person (using the south [left] entrance, just outside of the Colonnade).
Wheelchair Accessibility Service:
The site is not accessible.
How to Reach
1CLOSEST BUS STOPS TO ST. PETER’S SCAVI
Bus Lines (Stop “Cavalleggeri/San Pietro”):
Take the “Red Metro Line” or “A Line” and stop at “Cipro” or “Ottaviano”.
00120 Città del Vaticano, Rome, Italy
Get directions from Google Maps
Meeting point for the Scavi Tour:
The day of your visit you should arrive at the Excavations Office at least 10 minutes before the scheduled time. The Excavations Office is located on the Via Paolo VI (outside of the Colonnade, just to the south [left], near the entrance to the General Audience Hall.) Upon arrival, present the Swiss Guards with your letter of confirmation received from the Office which indicates the scheduled time of your visit..
St. Peter’s Scavi: Unveiling the Necropolis under the Basilica
It all started when Pope Pius XI asked to be buried as close as possible to the Tomb of St. Peter Apostle under St. Peter’s Basilica.
Works to enlarge the burial chamber of the Pope brought to life an entire necropolis. When the archaeologists started digging they discovered a double line of burial buildings, laying on one slope of the Vatican Hill. You must think about this necropolis as an open-air cemetery, hence very different from the catacombs. Read More…
Scavi of St. Peter FAQ
Are you wondering something about this landmark in Rome? Go to our Q&A section and post your question. It will be answered by an official Rome tour guide!