Sistine Chapel Rules You Must Know To Have A Nice And Respectful Visit!

The Sistine Chapel in Vatican City is not just a tourist attraction but a sacred site with deep religious importance. 

Visitors are expected to follow specific guidelines to maintain the chapel’s sanctity and respect others. 

These rules ensure a respectful visit, allowing everyone to appreciate its spiritual significance. 

Read further and discover details on all important Sistine Chapel rules that help visitors give reverence to this holy spot. 

Photography is Prohibited inside the Sistine Chapel.

Photography is Prohibited inside the Sistine Chapel.
Image: DanFLCreativo

Photography and video recording are not allowed in the Sistine Chapel.

All artworks on the Sistine Chapel ceiling and walls are protected by copyright laws.

You will get into trouble if you share any pictures of the Sistine Chapel from the inside on social media. 

Do not take out your mobiles, cameras, tripod stands, or drones inside the Sistine Chapel, as they will be confiscated. 

You can take photos without flash in the other parts of the Vatican Museum. 

Visitors must dress modestly and respectfully to enter Sistine Chapel.

The Sistine Chapel is a holy space, and you are expected to wear modest clothing when visiting.

Sleeveless or off-shoulder clothes are not allowed in the Sistine Chapel.

You will also not be allowed inside the Chapel if your knees are exposed; hence, avoid short pants, skirts, and dresses. 

Visitors cannot wear head coverings, like hats and caps, in the Chapel.

To know more about dressing guidelines, check out our Sistine Chapel clothing rules article, which will also let you know what to do if you are wearing revealing clothes and are already on the way to the Vatican Museums. 

Avoid large bags, food, sharp objects, large umbrellas, and firearms when visiting the Sistine Chapel.

Not to bring
Image: Pantheon – Rome, Italy, 2022 Stock photos by Vecteezy

Avoid carrying luggage that is larger than 40 x 35 x 15cm on a Sistine Chapel visit.

Do not bring along any packages or rucksacks either. 

Visitors should not carry any sharp objects like knives, metal tools, or scissors into the Sistine Chapel. 

Eating food or snack items is not allowed inside the Chapel and other exhibition rooms. 

You can have a snack from vending machines or a whole meal from the Vatican Museum Restaurants.

Small folding umbrellas are allowed in the Sistine Chapel; you cannot take the hockey stick-shaped or large umbrellas inside. 

You can leave food items, bags, scissors, etc, in the Vatican Museum cloakroom. 

Visitors cannot leave their wallets, mobile phones, cameras, jackets, or coats in the cloakroom. 

The Sistine Chapel will not allow visitors with guns or any other firearm weapons to enter the space. 

The use of laser pointers is not allowed in the Sistine Chapel either.

Maintain Silence inside Sistine Chapel.

Maintain Silence inside Sistine Chapel.
Image: Sculpture and art in the Vatican Museum, Vatican City, Rome, Italy Stock photos by Vecteezy

Do not make loud noises inside the Sistine Chapel to respect its sanctity.. 

You might have to leave if you’re too loud because it’s a special, holy place. 

It’s important to be quiet so everyone can enjoy and think about the beautiful art and the quiet, special feeling of being there. 

This way, everyone gets to see and feel the beauty of the chapel without noise getting in the way.

Alcoholic Beverages and smoking are strictly prohibited inside Sistine Chapel.

Alcoholic beverages are prohibited in the Sistine Chapel, and you can leave them in the Vatican Museum cloakroom. 

Smoking is also not allowed inside the Chapel. 

Do not carry cigarettes or electronic cigarettes on your visit to the Chapel. 

Wheelchair accessibility for disabled people. 

Wheelchairs are allowed in the Sistine Chapel. 

There is a ramp in the middle of the Sistine Chapel, with smooth flooring, making it perfect for wheelchairs. 

You can ask the staff to help you find the ramps and pathways reserved only for wheelchair users in other parts of the Vatican Museums.

Guide dogs, guiding partially blind or blind visitors, are allowed inside the Sistine Chapel. 

The dog must be on a leash and wear a muzzle at all times in the Chapel. 

You must inform the Vatican Museum staff that you will bring a guide dog a day in advance. 

The Sistine Chapel is usually crowded, and you might not have enough space from the wheelchair to check out all the artwork on the walls.

Check out our Top 10 Things to See in the Sistine Chapel article so you can enjoy seeing the best frescos and have an excellent time despite the crowd! 

Rules for Visitors Traveling with Kids

Parents traveling with small children are allowed to get their strollers inside the Sistine Chapel. 

You can also ask the museum guide staff to direct you to diaper-changing areas and nursing rooms in the Vatican Museum.

Where can I find seating space around the Sistine Chapel?

You can find seating space in one of the Vatican Museum Courtyards.

The Vatican Museum Courtyards are

  • The Pinecone Courtyard
  • Courtyard of the Pinacoteca
  • Courtyard of the Cuirasses
  • And the Square Garden. 

What should I do if I lose my belongings in the Sistine Chapel? 

You can inform any of the closest security personnel that you have misplaced an object in the Sistine Chapel.

They will help you find your object before you leave the Museum.

If you forget to collect the item before you leave the Vatican Museum, you can collect it the next day from the Vatican Gendarmerie Corps.

If you realize you have forgotten your belongings after reaching home, you can write an email to accoglienza.musei@scv.va, and the staff will try to help you locate your item.

If you want more information to ease your Sistine Chapel visit, check out our 15 Tips for Visiting the Sistine Chapel article! 

FAQs on Sistine Chapel Rules 

Is there any dress code for the Sistine Chapel?

Visitors wearing clothes that reveal their shoulders, knees, and stomach are not allowed in the Sistine Chapel. 

Can a woman wear pants to the Vatican?

Yes, women can wear pants that go below the knee in the Sistine Chapel and Vatican Museum. 

What is not allowed in the Sistine Chapel?

Items that are not allowed in the Sistine Chapel are

  • Sharp objects like knives and scissors.
  • Backpacks bigger than 40 x 35 x 15 cm. 
  • Weapons
  • Laser pointers

Can I bring a backpack to the Sistine Chapel?

You can bring a backpack that is smaller than 40 x 35 x 15cm. If you are carrying a larger backpack, you can leave it behind in the cloakroom. 

Can I bring a water bottle inside the Sistine Chapel?

Yes, you can carry a plastic water bottle inside the Sistine Chapel. 

Do these rules mentioned in the article apply to the Vatican Museum?  

Most of these rules also apply to the Vatican Museum. We recommend checking the Vatican Museum website for more information about Vatican Museums rules. 

Are wheelchairs and Baby strollers allowed in the Sistine Chapel?

Yes, wheelchairs and strollers are allowed in the Sistine Chapel.

Featured Image: Ielivideo from Getty Images

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