Since mid-2023, visitors need time-slot reservations to enter the Pantheon in Rome — buy the cheapest tickets online or onsite (riskier at busy times).
The Pantheon, for centuries one of the top free sights to see in Rome, in mid-2023 started requiring visitors to buy time-slot reservation tickets to enter the interior and see the most influential dome ever constructed. As with so many other top sights in Rome, resellers snap up the best tickets for busy times to sell at higher prices or to add guided tours and audio guides. Tickets are also sold onsite but that is a risky option in busy periods, as the number of visitors allowed into the Pantheon on any given day is limited.
Buy Tickets and Tours for the Pantheon in Rome
The Pantheon, as a working church, was traditionally a top free sight to visit in Rome. Visitors had to queue up, sometimes for hours in the high season, to pass the slow-moving security checkpoint before entering an often overcrowded building. The move to time-slot reservation tickets in mid-2023 was a generally good time-saving idea but as with so many other popular tourist sights in Italy, the costs of securing a ticket instantly ballooned.
Currently, 1200 visitors are allowed per hour to enter the Pantheon on time-slot reservation tickets. The number includes all visitors, so individual travelers should buy tickets as long in advance as possible because many tickets will be bought by tour groups.
Resellers may also legally buy up tickets and resell them to the public. Services such as guided tours or audio guides (mostly a download to use on your own phone or mobile device) are commonly added. Very few sell admission-only tickets and these are often hardly cheaper than adding an audio guide. Be careful of advertised “from” prices — in some cases, the cheapest price is only available for one time-slot period if booked five months in advance!
Large European-based resellers including Get Your Guide and Tiqets tend to have easy booking and fair cancellation options, while many American travelers prefer Viator. Prices are mostly similar for similar tours.
Buy the Cheapest Pantheon Tickets Online
The cheapest tickets to visit the Pantheon are sold online directly from the museum’s website but as with other Italian national cultural institutions, the process is a bit of an ordeal. It is not surprising that many visitors use the resellers, which at least generally have better cancelation and refund policies in addition to being much easier to use.
The basic process is currently as follows (and hopefully will eventually be a bit more streamlined but similar venues such as the Last Supper have not changed laborious procedures in years):
- From Direzion Musei Statali della Citta di Roma’s website, find the English version if necessary, and click on reservations — or try going directly to the Musei Italiani.
- Now, even before receiving any information on the tickets, prices, and if any are available, it is necessary to register and open a (free) account — only a valid email address is needed.
- Register and wait for a confirmation e-mail — almost instantly but it may end up in the spam folder.
- Once logged in on your account at the Musei Italiani website, go to the Pantheon Basilica di Santa Maria ad Martyres page. Here, to buy the ticket, click on the otherwise unlabeled photo of the Pantheon dome (not on the Choose your visit, Vistors Information, Ticket, or Details link). Now it is possible to see if tickets are available for timeslots on a specific day — it is not possible to check more than a single day at a time.
- For an open timeslot, select the specific tickets. Most visitors require “Intero – Full Price” but it is also possible to reserve free or discounted tickets for those that qualify. Select the number of tickets, “Add” and “Go to cart” when ready to pay.
- A last check to confirm all the tickets and times are correct and then Finish and Pay”.
- Another chance to bail out, or “Confirm Buy Ticket”.
- If buying free tickets only, they will immediately appear here — skip to steps 11 and 12.
- Now everything changes again to Italian, but there should be an English option — change the IT to EN or a few other language options. Most foreign visitors will use “Login with your email”. Read the “Privacy Notices” or Continue.
- Select payments (credit card) and proceed with the normal online buying process and security checks used by your card issuer.
- Tickets will be available in the account immediately after payment is processed and tickets are also sent to the email address.
- Print the pdf or simply show the QR code on a phone on the day and time of the visit.
Opening Hours of the Pantheon in Rome
The Pantheon in Rome is open daily from 9:00 to 19:00 with final admission at 18:30. The onsite ticket office closes at 18:00 and no tickets are sold within an hour of a religious service commencing. Online ticket reservations are sensible even in the low season to ensure availability.
Although the time-slot reservation ticket system makes the preferred time of a visit less critical than previously, the first hour in the morning and late afternoon are likely to remain the best times to visit the Pantheon with the lowest number of visitors inside the church.
Times to avoid visiting the Pantheon is immediately before or after regular religious services when visiting times may be shortened and a backlog of visitors try to enter at the same time. Holy Mass is usually said on Saturday afternoons at 17:00 and Sunday mornings at 10:30.
Currently, 1,200 visitors are allowed into the Pantheon at any given hour timeslot. It is therefore not necessary to line up in advance before the stated hour — a few minutes late may even help the security queue of early arrivals to move on a bit. Once inside, visitors may stay until closing time.
More Sights near the Pantheon
What to do with all the time saved now that it is no longer necessary to queue an undeterminable time to enter the Pantheon? There are plenty of sights and attractions in the immediate vicinity.
In addition to endless restaurants, cafes, and gelaterias, there are many free churches nearby with fantastic art. Almost directly behind the Pantheon is the Santa Maria Sopra Minerva — the only Gothic church in Rome — with a Michelangelo (?) sculpture and outside in the piazza an elephant by Bernini carrying an obelisk.
Very close by are two churches filled with art including top paintings by Caravaggio: San Luigi dei Francesi (St Louis the French) has three on St Matthew while Sant’Agostino has his famous Madonna of Loretto (and a Isaiah fresco by Raphael).