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Sir Alma-Tadema:Flora,Spring in the gardens of Villa Borghese

Villa Borghese  (Via Veneto)


An enchanting oasis of lush vegetation that within its 6km circumference houses  museums, art galleries, foreign academies and schools of archaeology, a zoo, a riding school, an amphitheatre, an artificial lake, where you can rent rowing boats, an aviary and several summerhouses, fountains and statues.

The Borghese family owned the oldest part of the villa since 1580. In 1605 Cardinal Scipione Caffarelli Borghese began purchasing lands around to create a villa di delizie.

In 1905 the park became property of the state.

 The park is made up of Giardini Segreti(the Secret Gardens), the Giardino del Lago (the Garden of the Lake),one of the loveliest places in the park and a rare example of English garden in Rome, the Valle dei Platani (the Valley of the Plane trees) and the remains of the Leccetto (Holm-Oak Grove) in the Parco dei Daini(the park of the Deer).

It houses the wonderful Borghese Gallery that has one of the most beautiful collections of art in the world: included among the masterpieces is the statue of Paolina Borghese by Canova, Amor Sacra e Amor profane and Venere che benda Amore by Tiziano, the Deposizione by Raffaello, six works by Caravaggio, statues by Bernini, La caccia di Diana by Domenichino and other works by Pinturicchio,Perugino, Veronese and Rubens.

Within Villa Giulia, that was built for Pope Julius III as a country retreat, is the National Etruscan Museum, It includes masterpieces of ancient Etruria, such as the sarcophagus of the Cerveteri newlyweds and the statue of Apollo of Veio (VI century B.C.).

The National Gallery of Modern and Contemporary Art houses XIX and XX century art and sculptures, produced mainly by Italian artists. There is also work by other European artists including;Courbet, Van Gogh, Degas, Monet, Cesanne and Klimt.

Situated in the heart of Villa Borghese lie the Museo Zoologico that has a small redeveloped zoo, the Biopark. It is home to around 200 animal species. The emphasis is on conservation. There is also the Wildlife Rescue Centre of LIPU (Italian Society for the protection of Birds ) a little hospital where you can see different birds being patients.

Open 9:30-18:00



Villa Doria Pamphilj (Monteverde)


Romes largest public park . It was laid out by Prince Camillo Pamphilj, nephew of Pope Innocent X between 1644.52. It is one of the richest in terms of vegetation with large open spaces of grassland and strips of natural vegetation alternate with gardens and plantations. A wonderful place to come for picnics and games on a beautiful Rome day.



Villa Sciarra (Gianicolo, Monteverde)


Situated at the slopes of the Gianicolo, it is said to have been a nymphs sanctuary in Roman times. There are lots of cherry trees that bloom in the spring. The paths through the park are decorated with statues of mythological figures like Apollo and Daphne and fountains. It also houses a lovely childrens playground.



Gianicolo (Trastevere, Monteverde)


Situated at the top of the Janiculum, it offers the most spectacular view of Rome. In the middle of the square there is a equestrian  monument dedicated to G. Garibaldi. On the avenue  (Passegiata del Gianicolo, realized in 188587) there are numerous busts of the volunteers who took part in the defense of Rome.

Villa Lante, which is the home of the Finnish academy, is a beautiful example of a renaissance villa.

Gianicolo is a wonderful place to spend time with the kids as it has pony rides, bumper cars and an open air puppet theatre.



Botanical Gardens (Trastevere)


A beautiful place to wander around and admire one of Italys most important botanical  gardens and number of species- more than 7000.Hours during the winter: 9:30-17:30. Summer hours: 9:30-18:30. Closed Sundays ,Mondays and holidays and in August.



Pincio (Piazza del Popolo)


Designed by the architect Valadier that also designed Piazza del Popolo in the early 1900th century. It overlooks the Piazza and has stunning view that is popular with all romantics at sundown.



Villa Ada (Via Salaria)


The former residence and hunting estate of the royal family. There are nature pathways among oaks trees and grasslands.  It offers special routes for joggers and athletes. There is also plenty for young people to do with its roller-skating rink, bike paths, two playgrounds and ponds. There is open air concerts in the summer.



Villa Celimontana (S. Giovanni, Terme di Caracalla)


Situated on the Celio hill, this lovely villa was originally a vineyard owned by the Mattei family.

Visitors come to admire the ancient marbles and beautiful trees in its gardens. There is also an obelisk from the times of Ramses II. The last owner Baron Riccardo Hoffman built a small Neo-Gothic temple which is now the home of the Italian Geographic Society.

There is a lovely playground for the children too.

In the summer there is a famous open air Viall Celimontana jazz concerts which attract big international artists.



Villa Aldobrandi  (Via Nazionale)


The gardens of  this villa built in the 16th century  for the Dukes of Urbino and then acquired by Pope Aldobrandi, is open to the public every day.



Farnese Gardens  ( Palatine)


Cardinal Farnese bought the ruins of Emperor Tiberius palace in the 16th century and commissioned Vignola to design the gardens. One of the first botanical gardens in Europe it now has beautiful rose gardens.



 Villa Torlonia  (Nomentana)


Origianlly built by the early 19th century by the architect Valadier, it became the private residence of Mussolini from 1925-43. After WWII it was used by the Anglo-American command in Rome. There are now many exotic plants and large trees.



The Appia Antica Park


After the archeological park of Foro Romano, there is many examples of Romes legacy that dot the landscape on the ancient route of the regina viarum: The Domine Quo Vadis church, the Maxentius complex, the tomb of Cecilia Metella and the Villa dei Quintili.

On Sundays the Appia Antica is closed to traffic and its a wonderful way to walk down this ancient road.



The Nature Reserve of Monte Mario


150 hectares of wood with guided tours along the 8 km of the hill that overlooks Rome. The viewpoint is called the path of lovers and was also appreciated by Goethe. It has a unique environment in Rome.



The Roman Coastal State Nature Reserve


Mediterranean vegetation covers the sand dunes in this beautiful park.This natural environment preserves an exceptional historical and archeological heritage which ranges from the ruins of Ostia Antica and the remains of Via Severiana, from the gates of Claudius to the Villa of Pliny in the Park of Castelfusano.  A sort distance away you can bathe at Capocotta.

Parks in Rome - It. Link

Parks in Latium-Link