The Vatican is one of the most well known and busiest museums in the world. It is open all year round except for a select number of days in the year. To best plan your trip, below you will find the Vatican hours, with opening and closing times, along with which days of the year the Vatican is closed to the public.
Vatican Museum Hours
The Vatican is open Monday to Saturday from 9 am to 6 pm with the last entrance at 4 pm. The Vatican is closed on Sundays, except for the last Sunday of the month when it is open for free between 9 am to 2 pm with the last entrance at 12 pm.
St. Peter’s Basilica Hours
St Peter’s Basilica is open from 7 am to 7 pm from April to September and from 7 am to 6 pm from October to March.
The Vatican is closed on Sundays (except the last Sunday of the month) as well as on some religious holidays. Here is an updated list of closures for 2019:
January 1st: The Vatican is closed on New Year’s Day. January 1st is also the Solemnity of Mary, Holy Mother of God which is a feast day for the mother of Jesus.
January 6th: This is a public holiday in the Vatican which celebrates the Adoration of the Magi where the three wise men come to visit Mary, the mother of God after giving birth to Jesus.
February 11th: This is a Vatican public holiday commemorating the Lateran Treaty which is the official day the Vatican became a separate country from Italy in 1929.
March 19th: This is St Joseph’s Day, celebrating St. Joseph who was the husband of the Virgin Mary and legal father to Jesus.
Easter Monday: The Vatican Museums close on Easter Monday celebrating the day after the resurrection of Christ. The Pope gives an Easter mass on St Peter’s Square. (Note: Easter changes calendar dates every year and it is best to check the exact day).
May 1st: This holiday is known as Primo Maggio in Italy. It recognizes workers and the Pope often addresses the public on this day.
June 29th: The Vatican is closed to celebrate the feast of St. Peter and St. Paul. St. Peter and St Paul were two apostles of Christ who were both martyred in Rome.
August 14th and 15th: The Vatican is closed to celebrate the Assumption of Mary. This is the day Catholics believe Mary ascended into heaven at the end of her earthly life.
November 1st: The Vatican is closed on this day to celebrate All Saints Day. This is to honor all souls who have died who were later made into Saints.
December 8th: The Vatican closes on this day to celebrate the Feast of the Immaculate Conception. This is the conception of Christ free from original sin. The Pope travels to the center of Rome for a special ceremony near the Spanish Steps.
December 25th and 26th: The Vatican is closed on Christmas Day, celebrating the birth of Christ. The Vatican is also closed the following day celebrating St. Stephen’s Day, who was said to be the first person to be martyred for being a Christian.