You Can See Michelangelo's Sistine Chapel Without Flying to Italy — Here's How

·2 min read

You don't have to fly all the way to Italy to catch a glimpse of the gorgeous Sistine Chapel this summer.

Full-sized replicas of the iconic Michelangelo piece are popping up in cities across the U.S., making it easier than ever to envelop yourself in the world-famous work of art without having to navigate crowded airports, flight cancellations, or ever-evolving COVID-19 restrictions.

Michelangelo's Sistine Chapel: The Exhibition, which is already open in Chicago, San Antonio, and Charlotte, North Carolina, is set to open in New York and San Francisco in September and in Los Angeles in late August. Other cities on the itinerary include Miami, Boston, Philadelphia, and Detroit.

The reproductions are made using licensed, high-definition photographs of the artist's 34 Sistine Chapel frescoes, a group that includes "The Creation of Adam" and "The Last Judgment." However, instead of being mounted on the ceiling — as several are at the Sistine Chapel in Vatican City — they'll be displayed at eye level to give visitors the chance to get up close and personal with every detail and brushstroke.

Michelangelo painted the famous Sistine Chapel ceiling between 1508 and 1512, returning to add "The Last Judgment," an iconic piece depicting God reaching his hand out to Adam, in 1535.

the Sistine Chapel
the Sistine Chapel

ANDREAS SOLARO/AFP via Getty

The works of art amount to more than 5,000 square feet of painted area, according to ​​"Michelangelo, Life, Letters, and Poetry" published by the Oxford University Press in 1999.

Exhibit organizers recommend allocating between 60 and 90 minutes to complete the experience.

Tickets for the New York exhibit are scheduled to go on sale on July 27. And if you don't see your city on the list, don't fret. Immersive art exhibits featuring work from painters such as Vincent van Gogh and Claude Monet also are making their way across the U.S.

Meena Thiruvengadam is a Travel + Leisure contributor who has visited 50 countries on six continents and 47 U.S. states. Find her on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.