SURROUNDINGS

Discover the city

In the heart of the historic centre, in the Regola district, between Trastevere, Campo di Fiori, Piazza Navona and just a few steps and you will immediately have something remarkable to admire. Leaving home, you can choose to go in any direction, no matter which one. Whichever way you go, you will be on a journey full of wonders and exciting things to see and discover.

The area around the flat is rich in testimonies and monuments, both civil and religious. You can start with a visit to Palazzo Spada, a walk along Via Giulia, the fascinating Piazza Navona, Campo di Fiori, the Pantheon, Palazzo Farnese, the Spada Chapel in the Church of San Girolamo alla Carità one of the most sensational marble chapels in Rome. And then to discover all the treasures of Rome, all within easy reach with a short walk.

 

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PALAZZO SPADA

BORROMINI’S PERSPECTIVE

Already from the flat’s windows, it is possible to admire the splendid façade of Palazzo Spada. The magnificent building, which takes its name from the Spada family, was built during the 16th century by Cardinal Girolamo Capodiferro, who had entrusted the project to the architect Bartolomeo Baronino.
The rich façade has a series of niches with statues representing the illustrious men of ancient Rome, including Trajan, Pompey, Fabius Maximus, Romulus, Numa Pompilius, Marcus Claudius Marcellus, Julius Caesar and Augustus, with the Spada coat of arms in the centre. At the same time, at the top level, tables depict Roman heroes’ deeds in Latin. The rich stucco decorations of the Palazzo Spada make it one of Rome’s most significant symbols of Renaissance architecture. Don’t miss the Secret Garden, with Borromini’s Prospective, created by the artist in 1653. A sequence of columns of decreasing height and a rising floor create the optical illusion of a 37-metre-long gallery (when it is 8 metres long) with a sculpture at the end that looks life-size when in fact it is only 60 centimetres high.

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In the courtyard are Hercules, Mars, Venus, Juno, Jupiter, Proserpine, Minerva, Mercury, Amphitrite, Neptune and Pluto. The palace also houses a colossal sculpture of Pompey the Great, believed to be the one at whose feet Julius Caesar fell. Inside, the 16th-century Palazzo Capodiferro the Spada Gallery with works by Guercino, Baciccia, Orazio Gentileschi, Artemisia Gentileschi, Guido Reni, Tiziano and Brueghel, the Elder, and has a significant collection of Baroque paintings, antique sculptures, furnishings and period furniture, which give this place a unique charm.

Spada Gallery
Piazza Capodiferro 13 00186 Rome

Opening hours
Monday/Sunday 8.30 a.m. – 7.30 p.m.
Closed on Tuesdays.
The ticket office always closes at 7 p.m.
For groups of less than 10 Reservation is not required

Included in Romepass circuit
Distance 2 minutes

FARNESE PALACE

THE NUT

Palazzo Farnese dominates the famous Piazza Farnese, embellished with twin fountains by Girolamo Rainaldi. (Piazza Farnese should be an oasis of peace, as it is a pedestrian zone, but unfortunately, the rules are not respected and every day it is invaded by all kinds of vehicles).
Work on Palazzo Farnese’s construction began in 1517 with Cardinal Alessandro Farnese (later to become Paul III in 1534). Antonio da Sangallo, the Younger carried out by followed by Michelangelo and Vignola and completed by Giacomo Della Porta.


 

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The rear elevation is Della Porta and Vignola’s work, while the facades on the side streets and the square are Sangallo the Younger’s work. On the other hand, Michelangelo completed the cornice. Palazzo Farnese has been renamed ‘The Nut’ because of its shape.
The Atrium
Consists of a wide central nave and two narrower side aisles divided by ancient granite columns from the Baths of Caracalla’s excavations.         

The Staircase.
This Staircase leads to the upper floor, the noble one. It is a grand staircase formed by majestic ramps that allow a magnificent ascent.
The Red Salon.
At the time called the “philosophers’ salon”, this room housed until 1787 the ancient busts of Greek philosophers and poets. This collection is now in the Archaeological Museum of Naples.
The Salone Bianco is known as the ‘Chamber of Queen Christina’ who stayed here between 1655 and 1656. The coffered ceiling bears the arms of Cardinal Odoardo Farnese.          
The Yellow Salon and the Signature Salon.

The coat of arms of Cardinal Alessandro’s and four symbols referring to the Farnese family: Pegasus, a ship, Farnese lilies and a shield are depicted on the coffered ceiling.  In the Hall of Signatures, there are frescoes that Domenichino painted in 1603 depicting Apollo and Hyacinth’s myths and Adonis and Narcissus’s death, which were later transformed into flowers: the hyacinth, narcissus and anemone. This motif represents the Farnese family.
The Camerino Farnese.
Carracci’s first work in Rome, commissioned by Odoardo Farnese, was the Cardinal’s Cabinet, also known as the Camerino Farnese. The vaulted ceiling decorated with frescoes between 1595 and 1597 depicts the cardinal virtues shown as a philosopher prince. This work is now in the Gallery of the Capodimonte Museum in Naples.

The Farnese Gallery.
The Gallery is the most famous room in Palazzo Farnese. Annibale Carracci, Agostino Carracci and Domenichino frescoed it between 1597 and 1604. The Gallery is narrow (about six metres) and just over twenty metres long. The vault’s decorations have their theme the gods’ loves and are taken almost exclusively from Ovid’s Metamorphoses. The central part depicts the wedding procession with the Triumph of Bacchus and Ariadne on two chariots pulled by tigers and accompanied by dancing figures.
The Hall of Hercules. This room takes its name from Hercules’ statue that was present here for centuries before being brought to the Archeological Museum of Naples and the entire Farnese collection.

Palazzo Farnese has been the headquarters of the French Embassy since 1871.

Opening Hours

It is possible to visit Palazzo Farnese by booking on the website: www.inventerrome.com/index.php/it/visitare-palazzo-farnese.
Visits are offered in French, Italian or English.

Reservation is compulsory

Address: Piazza Farnese 00186 Rome
Opening hours:
Wednesday and Friday afternoon. A professional guide conducts visits.

You can visit the Sangallo atrium, the courtyard, the garden, the Salone d’Ercole and the Carracci gallery.

The cost of the visit is €11 per person.

Distance 2 minutes

CAMPO di FIORI

Campo de’ Fiori is one of Rome’s most famous squares

The current market of Campo de’ Fiori already existed in the 15th century and was the site of inns for pilgrims and merchants and the home of courtesans.
Campo de’ Fiori
has a double life, depending on the moment.

From the first hours of the day until 2 p.m. it is a popular market,  where Romans’ voices selling fruit and vegetables resound.   
In the evening it is a lively square, especially for young people, attracted by the many bars and restaurants surrounding the square.         

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A bit of history

Popular tradition has it that this square’s name refers to Flora, a woman much loved by Pompey, the great Roman general. In reality, after being abandoned towards the end of the 14th century, it became a meadow full of flowers.
The construction took place around 1456 after Pope Callistus III had the whole area paved. Thus, Campo dè Fiori became the site of a flourishing horse market and the centre of numerous commercial activities.  After the redevelopment of the 16th century, the Piazza, almost as it is today, was a place of taverns, every building in the Piazza and the adjacent streets included one, together with trade and craft activities. The roads that converged on the square became symbols of commercial activities that still today bear the toponymy of the court: Via dei Baullari, which grouped with the shops of trunk and suitcase manufacturers, Via dei Giubbonari, jacket manufacturers, and so for all the other streets Via degli Straderari, dei Cappellari, dei Giubbonari, dei Chiodaroli, dei Cartari, Dei Pettinari, dei Chiavari etc.

 The square was also the site of executions, Giordano Bruno was burned here in 1600 on heresy charges. The statue the centre of the square reminds us of his story.

Campo di Fiori at Sunset As the sun goes down, Campo de’ Fiori turns into a favourite spot for dinner or simply an aperitif. (A suggestion: choose your restaurant carefully, there are many good ones but many to avoid).

Curiosity: One of the personalities linked to the history of Campo de’ Fiori was Giovanna de Candia dei Cattanei, nicknamed Vannozza, the famous lover of Alexander VI Borgia. Vannozza gave the Pontiff three children, all of them sadly famous: Cesare Borgia, who inspired Macchiavelli’s “Prince”, Lucrezia, accused of bloody intrigues, and the third Giovanni, who died in mysterious circumstances, including the probable fact that it was her brother who killed him. Vannozza was the owner of one of the most famous inns in Campo de’ Fiori, the “Taverna della Vacca”.  Famous also because it is said to have been frequented by prostitutes. The tavern no longer exists, but at the end of Vicolo del Gallo, you can see Vannozza’s coat of arms on the wall in a building from the Middle Ages.

Distance 2 minutes

 

NAVONA SQUARE

ROMAN BAROQUE MASTERPIECE

Piazza Navona is one of Rome’s most beautiful squares, and I confess my favourite, especially at night.

Piazza Navona is a busy square. And at any time of day, there are people there. That is why I recommend you come here at night or early in the morning if you want to enjoy its beauty to the full. But even at sunset, Piazza Navona is one of the most beautiful places to be.

 

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The square is bordered by the buildings that stood on the remains of the ancient Stadium of Domitian, whose shape and size the square retains. This ancient structure’s remains are located 5-6 metres below today’s street level and can still be seen and visited.  In the Stadium that Domitian had built in 86 A.D., were held athletic competitions and horse races. And over the centuries Piazza Navona has been the scene of popular festivals, races and jousts.  The modern name of the square derives from the word Agones, which means ‘games’ in Latin.

The current appearance of Piazza Navona was established in the 17th century when the noble Pamphili family, who lived in the area, commissioned the most influential architects of the time to monumentalise the site to make it a unique spaces in the city.

Dominating the square is the Church of Sant’Agnese in Agone, begun by Carlo and Girolamo Rainaldi and completed by Borromini, who made it one of the most magnificent Baroque architectures in Rome. Next to the Church is Palazzo Pamphilj. Opposite the palace stands the Church of Our Lady of the Sacred Heart, formerly known as San Giacomo degli Spagnoli, built for the Jubilee of 1450.

Three fountains enrich the square: the Fountain of the Moor, so-called because of the statue of the Ethiopian wrestling with a dolphin, the Fountain of the Calderari, also known as the Fountain of Neptune, both works by Giacomo della Porta and, in the centre, the imposing Fountain of the Four Rivers, by Gian Lorenzo Bernini. The Fountain represents as a large travertine cliff, on the corners of the ridge are placed the monumental marble statues of the four rivers representing the then known continents: the Danube for Europe, the Ganges for Asia; the Nile for Africa, with its veiled head (an allusion to the unknown sources); the Rio de la Plata for America.

The Domitian Stadium Archaeological Area is open to the public
Friday to Monday 10:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.
Saturday until 20:
Purchasing the ticket directly from the site
www.stadiodomiziano.com

TICKETS :
Full price € 8,50: 18 – 64 years old (audio guide included)*.
Reduced € 6,50: 12 – 17 years old / over 65 years old (audio guide included)*.
Junior € 4,50: 8 – 11 years old (audio guide included)*.
Duration of the visit with audio guide 40 minutes.

Distance 4 minutes

 

PANTHEON

ONE OF THE BEST -PRESERVED HISTORICAL MONUMENTS

The name comes from the Greek words pan (all) and theon (divine), and initially, the Pantheon was a small temple dedicated to all the Roman Gods. Emperor Hadrian built it between 118 and 125 AD to replace an earlier temple built between 27 and 25 B.C. by Marcus Agrippa and consecrated to Mars and Venus. The facade still bears the inscription, ‘M. Agrippa L. F. Cos. Tertium fecit” or “Marcus Agrippa Luci Filius consul tertium fecit” “Marcus Agrippa, son of Lucius, consul for the third time, built it”.        

In 609, the Roman temple became a Christian basilica with the name Santa Maria ad Martyres

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Inside are the tombs of Vittorio Emanuele II, Umberto I, Margherita di Savoia, and those of Raffaello Sanzio and Annibale Caracci.
 The temple consists of a circular hall surmounted by a hemispherical dome, preceded by 16 Corinthian columns supporting the tympanum. The ceiling of the pronaos was of bronze, but Pope Urban VIII had it removed in 1632 to make another great work inside St Peter’s Basilica, namely the altar canopy by Bernini. Hence the saying: “What the Barbarians did not do, the Barberini did”.

Discovering the Pantheon
On passing the huge columns and the gigantic bronze doorway, you will find yourself inside an enormous space that will leave you breathless, characterised by the impressive hemispherical dome with a diameter of 43.3m. An architectural miracle that makes the Pantheon a perfect sphere since its height is equal to its diameter: 43m and 44cm by 43m and 44cm. Balance and stability are the principles that the ancient architects adhered to an entirely synthesised in the Pantheon.

The Oculus at the top of the dome is the large and unique 9-metre opening called the Oculus, from which light and heat arrive. From the Oculus, a sunbeam penetrates inside and rotates according to the time of day. On the summer solstice, the sunbeam projects a luminous disc, 9 metres in diameter, onto the floor, just like the Oculus. If you have the opportunity, enter the temple at noon, when the sun’s rays from the Oculus become extraordinarily intense and create a unique effect.

The Oculus and Rain
 Light comes from this hole, but water also falls when it rains, but this drains away quickly trough to the central and lateral holes in the floor, which prevent puddles from forming.

The Pantheon Building technique is a mixing concrete with lighter and lighter materials, ranging from travertine to pumice stone, as one approached the top. All this has allowed the Pantheon’s dome to endure almost two thousand years and remain perfectly intact to this day.

OPENING HOURS

 Monday to Saturday: 9:00 – 19:30 Sunday : 9:00 – 18:00;

 Holidays: 9:00 – 13:00 Closed: 25 December, 1 January and 1 May

The Pantheon is freely accessible, and for the moment, there is no entrance fee. 

 Keep in mind that the Pantheon is a Basilica and that religious services take place inside.

Address:  Piazza Della Rotonda

 Distance:   400 m, 5 minutes.

 www.pantheonroma.com
Distance 5 minutes

 

VIA GIULIA

ONE KILOMETRE OF HISTORY AND ART

The most beautiful street in Rome is in Rione Regola, our neighbourhood. It is about 1 km long and runs parallel to the Tiber from Ponte Sisto to the Church of San Giovanni Dei Fiorentini. Thanks to the elegance of its façades, fountains and characteristic views, the street is considered the most beautiful in Rome and has an incredible heritage of art and culture housed in the buildings that line it.

Each palace or Church is a fine example of architecture along its route, and each one contains numerous and immeasurable works of art.


 

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The History   

Commissioned by Pope Julius II, from whom it takes its name and built by Bramante in the early 16th century, Via Giulia is the first and longest straight road, born to connect all papal institutions government. The Sacchetti, the Ricci and the Chigi,  ant all the most important families of the time, built their houses along Via Giulia. The area became populated with gardens and palaces.  Via Giulia also became the residence of many artists who set up their workshops in the street; Raphael, Cellini and Borromini lived there. In contrast to the rich palaces in the area near Ponte Sisto, there were also prostitutes’ houses, hospices for pilgrims or the poor, charitable institutions for orphans and single mothers. Via Delle Zoccolette is famous because it owes its name to the young girls who found shelter in one of the street’s institutions.

Over the centuries,  new palaces, churches and fountains will continually enrich the exclusive street. Until the second half of the nineteenth century, with the construction of the Tiber walls, the houses along the river disappeared. Many palaces were downsized or even eliminated, and the gardens surrounding them.

Despite these upheavals, Via Giulia still retains all its aristocratic charm.

Along Via Giulia        

Just before reaching Ponte Sisto, on our right, the sumptuous Via Giulia begins and immediately introduces us to its wonders, introducing us to the Fontana del Mascherone, built at the behest of the Farnese family around 1626. The Fountain consists of a rectangular basin and a Mascherone of Roman age. A few metres further on, behind the gate at number 186, we can see Palazzo Farnese’s rear facade, built in the second half of the 16th century by Vignola.

The Arch of the Farnese Palace above Via Giulia  According to Michelangelo’s project was supposed to connect Palazzo Farnese and its gardens to Villa Farnesina, the other side of the Tiber.

After the arch is the Church of S. Maria dell’Orazione e Morte, built around 1538 to bury the “poor dead”, without identity found in the countryside or drowned in the Tiber

The façade is full of columns and pillars; the doors and windows are decorated with winged skulls, and a plaque recalls “Hodie mihi, cras tibi”, that is “Today to me, tomorrow to you”. The interior decorations show continuous “macabre” references that always refer to life after death.

 CHURCHES and NOBLE PALACES

Adjacent to the Church of S. Maria dell’Orazione e Morte is Palazzo Falconieri, which first belonged to the Ceci family and then, through various passages, to the Falconieri who entrusted its restoration to Francesco Borromini. The Church of Santa Maria Degli Orefici, designed by Raphael and built by Baldassarre Peruzzi. Next are a series of small palaces, including Palazzo Baldoca-Muccioli at number 167 and Palazzo Cisterna at number 163. Immediately after, there is the Church of St Catherine of Siena, built-in 1526 to a design by Baldassarre Peruzzi. On the opposite side, at number 4, palazzo Lecca de Guevara. At n°16 is palazzo Varese, designed by Carlo Maderno. At number 38, we find the portal of palazzo Ghisleri. At number 65 there is the Church of Spirito Santo dei Napoletani, by Domenico Fontana.

At Vicolo Della Moretta, there is the Church dedicated to S. Filippo Neri, also called S. Filippino, because of its small size.

The next part of Via Giulia, after Vicolo delle Prigioni, is dominated by the massive building of the Carceri Nuove. Furthermore, immediately after the Juvenile Prison wanted by Pope Leo XII, designed by Valadier, immediately after the Criminal Museum, a curious and exciting museum dedicated to the most heinous crimes and criminals. At number 59 is the Church of S. Maria del Suffragio, designed by Rainaldi. At the corner of Via dei Bresciani and Vicolo del Cefalo is an extravagant building, with large stones and seats facing the street and known in Rome as “I sofà di via Giulia”: these are the remains of the unfinished Palazzo dei Tribunali della Curia, designed by Bramante.

Do not miss a visit to the Confalone auditorium in the street of the same name and the Spada Chapel in Via di Monserrato, 54-58.

Returning to Via Giulia, at number 64 is the Church of S. Biagio degli Armeni.   At No. 66 is Palazzo Sacchetti, perhaps the most valuable palace on Via Giulia, built by Antonio da Sangallo the Younger, who lived there until the year of his death in 1546. On the opposite side, the seventeenth-century palazzo Ricci Donarelli, and at number 85 is what tradition considers Raphael’s house, “but this is only a legend”. At number 79, the 16th-century Palazzo Medici Clarelli, also designed by Antonio da Sangallo the Younger.

At the confluence of Via Giulia and Piazza dell’ Oro stands the Church of S. Giovanni dei Fiorentini.  Jacopo Sansovino designed the Church, which began construction in the early 1500s. The Church took a century to complete and was continued, in fact, by Antonio da Sangallo the Younger, Giacomo Della Porta and Carlo Maderno, to whom we owe the characteristic elongated dome (1614), for which the Romans christened it ‘the sucked confetto’.

There are no pavements on Via Giulia, but the street is paved with cobblestones, which adds to its charm and period character. The only drawback is that when it rains, the street becomes a puddle.

Continuing along Via Giulia, you can reach St Peter’s Basilica, which was the project’s initial purpose, and Castel Sant’Angelo.

Distance 1′ 

CASTEL SANT’ANGELO

THE MAUSOLEUM OF ADRIAN

Castel Sant’Angelo is another symbol of Rome. Built by Emperor Hadrian in the 2nd century A.D. as a mausoleum for himself and his family, the Castle retained this original role until 403 AD.  Caracalla, in 217 AD, was the last emperor to be buried there. Over the centuries, the Castle has undergone an endless series of transformations that have taken it from being a tomb to being a fortress, a place of imprisonment, a court, a Renaissance residence and, today, a museum. Transformations that have allowed it to arrive intact until today. Around 1300, Papa Niccolò III (an Orsini) had the Passetto di Borgo built, a secret elevated passageway linking the Castle with the Vatican, through the Borgo. This 800 metres long fortified corridor allowed the Church’s head to take refuge inside the Castle when and if necessary.

 

Starting in 1400, Castel Sant’Angelo began to be embellished.

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We found a succession of courtyards, bastions, terraces, inner rooms, loggias, and prisons on seven different levels. These include the Saviour’s courtyard, the courtyard of the firing squad, the courtyard of the Angel, the Halls of Clement VIII, the courtyard of Alexander VI, the small courtyard of Leo X, and the private flats of Clement VII. The Sala Paolina with frescoes by Perin del Vaga and other rooms such as the Sala di Amore e Psiche, del Perseo, dei Festoni, del Tesoro, delle Colonne and della Rotonda. Hadrian’s mausoleum is located 3 metres below ground level, with the Urn Room at its centre. Inside the “dungeons of the Castle” are the parlour and the narrow cells where prisoners were held.

 One of these has been that one of Benvenuto Cellini.

The Sala della Giustizia (Hall of Justice), where death sentences were passed, is fascinating. Here, Clement VIII decided on the death penalty for Beatrice Cenci and the torture of Giordano Bruno.

Visiting the Castle, you can walk along the mighty ramparts overlooking the river and admire the beautiful view.

The  Angel terrace is so-called because a colossal statue of the Archangel Michael is there: ” The deck, on which stands the figure of the Angel with the bell next to it, whose funereal chimes announced the death sentences, is the place where the suicide of Tosca, a character in Puccini’s opera of the same name, is set, who threw herself from here after killing Cavaradossi.

 The National Museum of Castel Sant’Angelo is open.

Monday to Sunday from 9.00 a.m. to 7.30 p.m.

Tickets: € 15.00 full price; € 2.00 concessionary

Reservations: We recommend booking and purchasing tickets online 

www.gebart.it/musei/museo-nazionale-di-castel-santangelo

 Romepass circuit
Distance 14′

 

BASILICA OF SAINT PETER

THE LARGEST CHURCH IN THE WORLD, HEART OF CHRISTIANITY

 

According to tradition, St Peter’s Basilica in the Vatican stands on the site buried the Apostle Peter.

Emperor Constantine had the primitive St. Peter’s Basilica built here around 320.

In 1505  Julius II decided to rebuild the temple completely, entrusting the work to Bramante, who was succeeded by Raphael, Baldassarre Peruzzi, Antonio da San Gallo, Michelangelo, Giacomo della Porta and Carlo Maderno. In 1629 Gian Lorenzo Bernini took over the building site’s management and carried out most of the decorations. Between 1656 and 1665, he finally arranged the square in front of the Basilica, erecting the famous colonnade.

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THE DOME    

The dome was designed by Michelangelo, who had been working on the construction of the Basilica since 1547. At the end of his long life (he died at the age of 89 in 1564), the building’s direction passed to his pupil Giacomo Della Porta, who raised the vault of the dome by about 7 metres and completed the work. The dome has an internal diameter of 42.56 metres and a height at the top of the cross of 136.57 metres; the lantern is 17 metres high.

Reaching the top of St. Peter’s Dome offers incomparable emotions and suggestions impossible to describe. There is no more exciting place than this. From the dome, you have a unique view of the city. But be careful, the climb is not only imposing and allows you to admire the dome, Michelangelo’s drawings and some beautiful mosaics, but it is also quite difficult.

The first part steps are quite comfortable, towards the end with the shrinking of the environment become increasingly narrow and a bit’ high and need breath, but above all, you should not have claustrophobia.

 THE SQUARE

Gian Lorenzo Bernini completed the square in 1667.

 The colonnade of St. Peter’s Square has an elliptical shape  to signify  as

 Bernini himself said: since St. Peter’s Church is almost the matrix of all the others, it had to have a portico that would show that it was receiving Catholics with open arms to confirm them in their belief, Heretics to unite them in the Church and Infidels to enlighten them in the true faith”.

The colonnade is composed of 284 columns of Doric order and surmounted by 140 statues of saints over three metres high and six large coats of Alexander VII Chigi’s arms.   Standing on the porphyry disks in the square, you can see all the columns lined up entirely one behind the other as if by magic they had moved.

With the opening of Via Della Conciliazione, a new, wide access road to the Vatican Basilica was built, enhancing the majestic view of St. Peter’s dome, but profoundly altering Bernini’s original and evocative design.

The square dimensions are extraordinary: it is 320 metres deep with a central diameter of 240 metres.  On either side of the Obelisk, placed in the centre of the square by Domenico Fontana, are two large fountains by Bernini and Maderno.

The Obelisk that stands in the centre was brought to Rome from Alexandria by Caligula. The Vatican obelisk is the only Obelisk in Rome that has never fallen. Pope Sixtus V wanted it in the centre of the square to give it greater visibility. On the base of the Obelisk can be read: Christus vincit, Christus regnat, Christus imperat, Christus ab omni malo plebem suam defendant (Christ victorious, Christ King, Christ Emperor, may Christ defend his people from all evil). It is an exorcistic and propitiatory formula used in the Middle Ages to ward off illness.

The Obelisk is 25 metres high. At the top of the Obelisk, Julius Caesar‘s ashes in a bronze globe rolled in gold. The large sphere was removed in 1585 and is now on display in the Capitoline Museums.  Of the 13 ancient obelisks in Rome, it is the second largest after the Lateran, and the only one without symbols.

On the pavement of St Peter’s Square is inlaid a sundial. The shadow cast by the Obelisk marks the movements of the sun. At noon on the zodiac signs and the two discs at either end, you can see the two solstices, summer and winter.

 THE FACADE

Carlo Maderno designed the entrance and façade who completed them in 1614. The façade is 114.69 metres wide and 48 metres high and surmounted by thirteen statues (almost 6 metres high) with the Blessing Redeemer statue in the centre. The façade has five entrances leading to the interior of the Basilica.  Of the five doors, the middle one is remarkable, with 15th-century doors by Filarete.  The Holy Door, whose opening officially starts the Holy Year, is the last one on the right.

The atrium created between 1608 and 1612.is considered one of Carlo Maderno’s most valuable works. At the back, in the left vestibule, is the equestrian monument of Charlemagne, while in the right vestibule is the statue of Emperor Constantine on horseback, made by Bernini in 1670.

 THE INTERIOR

The Church is 187 metres long, 58 metres wide at the aisles’ level and 140 metres wide at the level of the transept; the maximum height of the vault in the nave is 46 metres (like a 15-storey building!). It has a central nave and two smaller side aisles. On the nave floor, a few metres from the entrance are the Rota Porphyretica, a porphyry disc on which Charlemagne knelt to receive the imperial crown from Leo III on Christmas Eve 800.

Proceeding towards the altar, you can see, marked on the floor, the bronze letters with which the lengths of the largest churches in the world. On the last pillar to the right, a famous bronze statue of St Peter seated and blessing – introduces the dome, whose luminous interior was decorated with mosaics by Cavalier d’Arpino in 1605

In the inner faces of the pillars are carved the niches that hold four colossal statues: St Longinus, the soldier who opened Jesus’ side with a lance and later converted to Christianity, a work by Bernini in 1638; St Helen, mother of Emperor Constantine, who brought the cross and nails of martyrdom to Rome; St Veronica, who is said to have wiped Christ’s face with a cloth on the road to Calvary, and finally St Andrew, brother of Peter, crucified in Greece.
At the centre of the Church,  the famous bronze Baldachin 29 metres high, an early work by Bernini, executed between 1624 and 1632.  The Baldachin surmounts the papal altar consists of four colossal twisted columns decorated with spiral grooves, olive and laurel branches, and angular statues of extraordinary elegance, culminating in a gilded bronze sphere. Note the bees (the heraldic emblem of the Barberini family, indicating their perseverance). Inside is a golden dove, the symbol of the Holy Spirit. On the marble bases supporting the columns, a woman’s face is depicted seven times, from conception to a child’s birth, represented in the last frieze. It is a work by the young Borromini to magnify the Mater Ecclesia, Mother Church of all other churches. To make the Baldacchino was used, the bronze that covered the dome of the Pantheon.

The dome rises majestically above the canopy. The Latin inscription at the base of the dome reads: “You are Peter, and on this rock, I will build my Church, and to you, I will give the keys to the kingdom of heaven”.

Inside the Basilica there are numerous works of great artistic and religious value. On the way back to the entrance, in the first Chapel of the right aisle, you can admire the most famous of the masterpieces inside St. Peter’s, Michelangelo’s Pietà, a marble work created by the artist when he was only 23 years old. In succession is the Chapel of the Blessed Sacrament, executed by Bernini in 1674; the funeral monument to Gregory XIII (1572-1585); the monument to Clement XIII by Canova. The Altar of the Chair, another masterpiece by Bernini. The bronze Chair of Peter. The funerary monuments to Paul III by Guglielmo della Porta (left), and that to Urban VIII by Bernini. Another sculpture of great artistic importance is the one dedicated to Alexander VII, Bernini’s last work, created when the artist was eighty years old. The skeleton, which appears below the red drape, and the hourglass symbolise the passing of time and death’s inevitability.

VATICAN CAVES and S.T. PETER’S TREASURE
An integral part of the Basilica is in the Vatican Grottoes, located between the floor of the Constantinian Basilica and the present one: here are the tombs of many Pontiffs Pius XII, Paul VI, John Paul I and John Paul II. From the caves, where chapels, statues, monuments and tombs follow one another, you can access the Pre-Constantine Necropolis.  In this place, together with mausoleums from the 2nd-4th centuries, there is a modest monument, but the foundation of the Church of Rome: the tomb of Peter, in which, according to tradition, the remains of the Apostle are preserved. Recent archaeological investigations seem to confirm this.

Visit
Entrance to St. Peter’s Basilica is free of charge, and you can book a guided tour. Just a few steps from St Peter’s Basilica are the Vatican Museums with thousands of works of art collected over more than five centuries.

Access to the Dome
Elevator 
up to the terrace level and continue on foot (320 steps) Ticket 10€

 Foot up  551 steps Ticket 8 €.

Distance 1,5 km 16′

 

PONTE SISTO

BETWEEN TWO BANKS 

 

Ponte Sisto was built on the ruins of an ancient Roman bridge, dating back to 215 AD, at the time of the emperor of Caracalla, who wanted to unite the Tiber’s left bank Trastevere.

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Between 366 and 367, Emperor Valentinian had a triumphal arch decorated with bronze statues erected for the first major restoration, now in the Museo Nazionale Romano. In 792 the bridge collapsed after a river flood and was consequently abandoned, so it took the name “Ruptus”, “Tremulus” or “Fractus” (broken). It was not until the Jubilee of 1475 that Sixtus IV commissioned Baccio Pontelli to rebuild the old bridge, which took Sixtus Bridge’s name after the pontiff. Before its construction, a boat connected the two banks Arenula on the left, and Renella on the opposite bank. In 1599 it was restored by Clement VIII, who had the paving and parapets renewed in travertine. In 1880, after the barriers’ construction, cast-iron parapets were placed, which significantly changed its appearance. The bridge, which is 108 metres long and 11 metres wide, consists of four arches with a large circular “occhialone” on the central pier, which functions as a detection and warning point in case of flooding the Tiber. The bridge was restored for the Jubilee of 2000 and has regained its fifteenth-century image. Ponte Sisto is only walkable, always crowded with people coming and going from Trastevere or stopping to enjoy the magnificent sunset light while looking towards the Tiber Island.

Distance 2′

 

TRASTEVERE

TRASTEVERE ON THE OTHER SIDE OF THE TIBER

For many, Trastevere is the most beautiful district in Rome, without a doubt, the most characteristic.

As soon as you leave home, cross Ponte Sisto, and you will find yourself on the other side of the Tiber in the heart of the district.
Whatever time you choose to cross the Tiber. We are sure you will be satisfied.

Without a doubt, the alleys of Trastevere are among the most characteristic of all Rome. From Piazza Trilussa to Santa Maria in Trastevere, passing through Vicolo del Cinque, Via della Scala, Vicolo del Moro or Vicolo del Bologna, you have the feeling of living in another time.


 

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Trastevere is beautiful to discover by day and experience by night. Trastevere is beautiful to discover by day and experience by night. Here, if you know how to choose, you can spend beautiful evenings having fun and enjoying good food. However, there are not many good trattorias and even fewer excellent restaurants. But I think I can suggest some useful addresses. Trastevere is a district with a long history, dating back as far as Etruscan times, but until Augustus, this area remained outside the city proper; it was only at the end of the Republican era that Trastevere began to be an inhabited area. In the imperial age, it became a vast district inhabited by workers and artisans and ordinary people.  The district has preserved its original characteristics for centuries, showing every evidence of its appearance and the unmistakable sign of poverty and precariousness distinguished from the rest of the city. A disorderly cluster of houses and hovels distributed in a tangle of narrow streets and dark alleys around primitive churches.
These streets retained their principal character even in later centuries. No cardinals or high-ranking people ever lived here. Apart from a few rare exceptions, the district was never involved in the construction of sumptuous churches, nor were aristocratic palaces built here; at most, modest people lived here.  In recent decades, Trastevere has become a prestigious and much sought-after area while retaining its popular character. Trastevere has remained unchanged over the centuries until the opening at the beginning of the last century of the ‘Viale del Re’, then ‘Viale del Lavoro’, now Viale Trastevere, which distorted its soul, dividing Trastevere into two parts. The neighbourhood is vast, and the things to see are potentially endless. Alleys, Churches, Sights
Trastevere is a place to be experienced on foot. The best thing to do is walk around, look around and explore the district without a particular destination. In Trastevere Everywhere you go, you will find suggestive places! Like the Church of San Cosimato, and its almost secret but charming cloister. The Basilica of Santa Maria in Trastevere, and its mosaics, Sant’Agata in Trastevere. And then towards via della Lungara in a less frequented part of Trastevere you can visit the Botanical Garden, Villa Farnesina, the Palazzo and Galleria Corsini and the Church of Ss. Rufina and Seconda of the 12th century, San Giacomo alla Lungara or Settignano, Santa Maria della Luce IV century.
Towards the Janiculum
San Pietro in Montorio and the small temple by Bramante.South beyond Viale Trastevere The Basilica of Santa Cecilia, 11th century San Benedetto in Piscinula, 5th century San Crisogono, 11th century San Francesco d’Assisi a Ripa Grande, San Giovanni Battista dei Genovesi, and these are just some of the infinite treasures of Trastevere.
Distance 5′

GIANICOLO

THE MOST ROMANTIC VIEW

Above Trastevere, we find the Gianicolo, undoubtedly one of the must-see places to enjoy a magnificent view of the city. Above Trastevere, we find the Gianicolo, undoubtedly one of the must-see places to enjoy a magnificent view of the city. The terrace of the Janiculum offers a breathtaking view of ancient Rome. Your gaze will wander from the rooftops to the ancient ruins, monuments, domes and as far as the horizon.

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You can reach the Janiculum with a beautiful walk through the greenery and the walkways that intersect Via Garibaldi.
The Janiculum was the stage for the fighting for the Roman Republic in 1849.
Eighty-four busts of the heroes of those battles are along the green avenues.
There is also a cannonball on the side of San Pietro’s n Montorio church in memory.
An equestrian statue of Giuseppe Garibaldi, the hero of two worlds, dominates the square.
As well as offering a fantastic view over Rome and being a charming area for walking, and a favourite destination for couples looking for romantic spots, the Janiculum has much more to show.
Fontana dell’Acqua Paola, or Il Fontanone, a monumental marble fountain, created in the 17th century to celebrate the ancient Roman aqueduct’s reopening. And it is where the opening scene of ‘La Grande Bellezza’, the 2014 Oscar-winning film, was shot.
The Manfredi Lighthouse: The beautiful lighthouse built-in 1911 as a gift from the Italians who emigrated to Argentina.
Not to be missed is the Church of San Pietro in Montorio wherein its courtyard is the Tempietto del Bramante, a small temple erected on the site where St Peter’s martyrdom crucified upside down, took place.
Don’t miss Villa Doria Pamphilj, Rome’s largest public park with the splendid Casino del Respiro, located in the park’s centre, surrounded by a citrus grove and well-tended Italian gardens.

Also, the Museum of the Roman Republic and Garibaldi’s Memory at Porta San Pancrazio.

Curiosities

When you are at home or on the terrace, on time at noon, you will hear a slight roar; a cannon shot from the top of the Janiculum. This tradition dates back to Pius IX who, to avoid time confusion, instituted this service in 1846.
Distance: 1.6 km 18 min.

GHETTO

AN ENCHANTED CORNER, A PIECE OF CITY EXPOSES YOU TO THE CHARM OF ALLEYWAYS AN MEMORY.

The Sant’Angelo district at the Capitol’s foot is the smallest of the Roman districts its area is bounded by Largo Arenula, via delle Botteghe Oscure, via dell’Aracoeli, via del Teatro di Marcello Lungotevere de’ Cenci. The site is still primarily known and referred to as the Jewish Ghetto of Rome. The district is one of the most fascinating, famous for its history and its restaurants. People come here to enjoy the delicious dishes of traditional Judaic-Roman cuisine.


 

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The real creator of the Ghetto was Paul IV Carafa, who on 14 July 1555, with the bull “Cum nimis absurdum”, wanted to separate the houses of the Jews from those of the Christians, enclosing the area with a wall and three gates, on Piazza Giudia near S.Angelo in Pescheria and near S. Gregorio de Quattro Campora.
In 1586 pope Sixtus V enlarged the Ghetto towards the Tiber. The real creator of the Ghetto was Paul IV Carafa, who on 14 July 1555, with the bull “Cum nimis absurdum”, wanted to separate the houses of the Jews from those of the Christians, enclosing the area with a wall and three gates, on Piazza Giudia near S.Angelo in Pescheria and near S. Gregorio de Quattro Campora. In 1586 pope Sixtus V enlarged the Ghetto towards the Tiber.
The entrances were closed from dusk to dawn; The gates opened only for those who had a special permit or those who had to exercise the only two trades allowed: street sale of rags and loans to usury.
For more than three centuries, the Roman Ghetto was an urban unicum, overcrowded, degraded, bringing disease and death. Social differences were inevitable: wealthy families lived in houses far from the river, while the poorest lived there. Here the dark, sunless dwellings were frequently submerged by the waters, in a perpetual state of mud and damp.  In 1848 Pius IX erased the shame of the “Ghetto” by ordering the walls and gates to be knocked down.
The Ghetto was finally abolished only after 1870. Most of the old streets, alleys and buildings were demolished by 1888. Historically, the area of the district encompasses the site where the great Circus Flaminius once stood.
Even today, it is possible to see many Roman times’ testimonials on the older buildings’ walls. Among the Roman remains in this district are the remains of the Portico d’Ottavia, built in the 2nd century B.C. and modified a hundred years later by Emperor Octavian Augustus, who dedicated it to his sister Octavia, and Transformed, in the Middle Ages, into a fish market. An inscription in Latin is still visible today: ‘the heads of the fish longer than this marble plaque must be given to the Conservators up to and including the first fins’. ‘The Conservators were the civic administrators’.
Parts of the original paving can still be seen at the portico’s foot, showing that the former ground level was much lower than it is today. Behind the elaborate stand, three tall columns were belonging to the temple of Apollo Sosianus, dating from around 430 BC. Next to the temple is a two-storey theatre, built at the end of the 1st century B.C. and dedicated to Marcellus, nephew of Octavian Augustus. The theatre initially had three levels, but what is striking about these impressive ruins is that an entire palace is on top of them. The theatre mutated into a fortress in the 12th century, and by the 14th century, it became the property of the powerful Savelli family.
At the very end of the district, next to the theatre is the Church of San Nicola in Carcere. The Church founded in the early Middle Ages; its left side preserves some columns of a small pre-existing temple. Today, many columns, capitals and cornices found in the excavations lie in the area between the theatre and the temples.
Situated at the northern end of the small district, Torre Margana, one of Rome’s surviving medieval family towers, dominates the winding alleyways network below, which give this part of Sant’Angelo an appearance still very close to the original.
Within the walls of the Ghetto, thousands of Jews were forced to live in old, tiny houses, but just outside its gates, wealthy families lived in sumptuous palaces. One of them is Palazzo Costaguti, whose main entrance originally opened onto Via della Reginella. But since after the establishment of the Ghetto this alley led to the infamous enclosure, the owners bricked up the door and opened another one just around the corner, in the small Piazza Mattei where the famous Fountain of the Turtles stands, as well as Palazzo Mattei, consisting of five separate palaces, built between the late 15th and early 17th centuries.
Although most of the alleys that were once part of the Ghetto have disappeared, the plan of the innermost part of the district is still reasonably faithful to the original. Many houses dating from the late 1400s to the mid-1500s along the northern side of Via Portico d’Ottavia maintain their original appearance.

Continuing out of the Rione, you can reach the Fori Imperiali and the Colosseum in a few minutes if you go left, the Bocca della Verità and the Circo Massimo if you go right.

Distance 5′ minutes – 400 m

Where to eat in the Ghetto
In the Ghetto, of course, the main attraction is the Judaic-Roman cuisine with its traditional recipes, where the symbol is the artichoke.
Discover our suggestions Discover the best restaurants

FORI IMPERIALI

FORUM of CAESAR- FORUM of AUGUSTUS – FORUM of PEACE – FORUM of NERVA – FORUM of TRAJAN

The Fori Imperiali area is undoubtedly one of the most famous and at the same time, most fascinating archaeological and historic sites in the world. It is located in Rome’s heart, along the same name street, between Piazza Venezia and the Colosseum. The Fori Imperiali area is undoubtedly one of the most famous and at the same time, most fascinating archaeological and historic sites in the world. It is located in Rome’s heart, along the same name street, between Piazza Venezia and the Colosseum. Until the twentieth century Via dei Fori Imperiali did not yet exist. Between 1924 and 1932 the demolition of all the buildings in the area began and Via dei Fori Imperiali was built, bringing to light many archaeological finds and erasing centuries of history and evidence.

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HISTORY

The Forum of Caesar
Looking towards the Colosseum on the right we find the first of the Imperial Forums. It is the Forum of Caesar. Started in 54 B.C., immediately after Gaul’s conquest, and completed in 46, it was an enlargement of the Roman Forum. It stretched between the Roman Forum, the Quirinal Hill and the Capitoline Hill. Caesar expropriated at a high price the private houses that stood in the area and bought all the land necessary for his project’s realisation to realise the project. The Forum looked like a long and narrow square surrounded by colonnades with two naves. Inside the Forum there are still the remains of the Temple of Venus Genetrix, the Tabernae, the Basilica Argentaria, and a semicircular latrine considered the largest in the ancient world.

The Peace Forum
The Temple of Peace, called the Forum of Peace only from the late imperial era, was built by Emperor Vespasian between 71 and 75 A.D. to commemorate the Jewish victory of 70 A.D. It is a large rectangular square with a temple on the backside, dedicated to peace. On either side of the temple were four large halls, two on each side;  during the 6th century A.D.,  one of these rooms was transformed into the Church of Saints Cosmas and Damian. In the adjoining hall, the Forma Urbis, the great map of Rome made at Septimius Severus’s time and engraved on marble slabs. The Forum’s central area was a garden, with flowerbeds and fountains for water games. The Forum of Peace also contained many works of art, including the seven-armed candelabrum transported from Jerusalem and several statues, which had previously decorated Nero’s, Domus Aurea.

The Forum of Augustus

The Forum of Augustus is In front of Caesar’s Forum.  It is the second in order of time and inaugurated in 2 B.C. The Forum of Augustus was limited on the backside by a grandiose wall of 33 metres high made of peperino blocks and stone, which isolated it from the district of Suburra at that time a slum. It was built at the behest of Octavian Augustus, together with the temple of Mars Ultor a magnificent building in white Carrara marble with eight columns on the front and seven on the long sides; three are still visible.  Large porticoes and two semicircular exedras surrounded the forum square with niches. Inside the slots were statues of triumphant members of the Giulia family. At the end of the portico on the left, a large square hall, whose back wall contained a colossal statue, probably the Colossus of Augustus. On the north side of the Forum is the House of the Knights of Rhodes, with its magnificent loggia.

The Forum of Nerva
Domitian (81-96 A.D.) built The Forum but inaugurated only after his death by his successor Nerva in 97 A.D. The name Transitory derives from the fact that it was in the long and narrow space between the Forum of Peace, Caesar’s Forum, and Augustus’s Forum. On the short side towards the Suburra, a temple to Minerva, protector of Domitian. All the colonnade remains are two columns called “le colonnacce” and a section of the back wall on the side towards what is now Via Cavour. On the attic, a bas-relief of Minerva, while on the frieze there are scenes of women’s work. Behind the temple of Minerva, there is a sizeable horseshoe-shaped exedra. In 1606 the temple of Minerva, until then well preserved, was destroyed by pope Paul V to build the Acqua Paola fountain on the Janiculum with its recovered materials.

The Forum of Trajan
The works started by Domitian were partly continued by Trajan, who gave his name to the fourth Forum.  The last and largest of Rome’s forums, the complex includes the splendid Trajan’s Column, a funerary monument to the emperor. The shaft is 30 metres high with a magnificent spiral bas-relief depicting more than two thousand five hundred figures narrating Trajan’s two battles against the Dacians. Inside the column, there is a spiral staircase leading from the base where Trajan was buried, now replaced by St Peter’s statue. And the Basilica Ulpia, the largest of the Roman period, built to the design of Apollodorus of Damascus between 106 and 113 AD, of which part of the splendid coloured marble floor remains. Behind Trajan’s Column and the Basilica Ulpia, the Syrian architect Apollodorus also built the Trajan’s Markets for the retail trade.

Trajan’s Markets
An imposing complex, begun in 107 but completed under Hadrian, it was considered by the ancients to be the eighth wonder of the world.  The architectural and statuary remains are the first nucleus of the Imperial Forum Museum.

The Imperial Forum Museum
The Imperial Forum Museum is the first museum of ancient architecture housed in Trajan’s Markets. In Rome, the Imperial Forum Museum is both an archaeological museum and an excellent Roman historical site open to the public. It fully represents the concept that artefacts should be kept in their original context, which becomes a “place-museum” like this one. Topographically and conceptually linked to the grandiose urban system of the Imperial Forums: with the Forum of Caesar (46 B.C.), the Forum of Augustus (2 B.C.), the Forum of the Temple of Peace (75 A.D.), the Forum of Nerva (97 A.D.) and the Forum of Trajan (112 and 113 AD).
Distance: 1.6 km 18 min.
Visit
It is possible to visit all the Forums with a single ticket.
The Trajan’s Markets and the Museum of the Imperial Forums not are included.
Online booking is mandatory.
IMPERIAL FORUMS
Opening hours: Daily 9.30-19.30Ticket prices:
Full € 11.50. Reduced € 9,50
COLOSSEUM PARK  Colosseum, Roman Forum, Palatine – Types of tickets-  dinary Ticket – full price € 16,00 Valid 24h – with Romapass € 7,50

Mercati di Traiano – Museum of the Imperial Forums
Via IV Novembre 94 – 00187 Rome
www.mercatiditraiano.it
Online shopping:
museiincomuneroma.vivaticket.it
Full price € 11,50 Reduced price € 9,50

Romepass circuit

Distance 1 km  10′

COLOSSEO

THE SYMBOL OF ROME

The Colosseum originally called the Flavian Amphitheatre.  It owes its current name to a colossal bronze statue depicting Nero that, in the 2nd century A.D., stood a few metres from it next to the Domus Aurea.

The construction of the Colosseum started in 72 B.C. with Vespasian and ended in 80 with Titus. With its 188 metres long, the Colosseum, 156 metres wide and 57 metres high, became the largest Roman amphitheatre. The Colosseum allowed more than 50,000 people to attend their favourite shows. Exhibitions of exotic animals, executions of prisoners, reproductions of battle scenes, and gladiator fights were for years the Romans’ entertainment spectacles.


 

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The Colosseum made of white travertine rose on four floors. In the first three, there were columns and niches, in each of which there was a statue. On the last level, where there were only windows, masonry and wooden supports support a huge tarpaulin (velarium), which served to protect the spectators from the sun and the rain.
The arena, 76m x 46m, was made of wood and covered with sand. There was a dense series of tunnels. In the basement were kept the beasts and stored the stage equipment. If you want you can go down into the belly of the monument, and visit these rooms that still preserve the state they were in at the end of the 5th century A.D. During the Roman Empire and under the motto “Panem et circenses” the Colosseum was in operation for more than 500 years, and its last shows happened in the 6th century.
Starting from the V century, with the abolition of the gladiatorial games by Valentinian III, the Colosseum underwent a slow and progressive decline. It became a shelter for animals, a place for handicraft workshops and houses. For centuries the Colosseum has been plundered and used as a quarry for materials. To construct St Peter’s Basilica and civil buildings such as Palazzo Barberini, the marble of the facade and some internal parts of the Colosseum have been used.

In our time only one-third of the original construction remained.

Until the end of ancient times, Colosseum hosted shows of great popular appeal, today it is itself a spectacle and a symbol of human ingenuity that has survived anything and everything.
In addition to being a World Heritage Site, in July 2007 it was included among the New Seven Wonders of the World, along with the Great Wall of China, the ancient Jordanian city of Petra, the Statue of Christ the Redeemer in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, the Inca Ruins of Machu Picchu, Peru, the Mayan Pyramid of Chichen Itza, Mexico, and the Taj Mahal, India.

VISITING THE COLOSSEUM

The Colosseum is open to the public every day, except 25 December and 1 January, from 8:30 in the morning to afternoon-evening (5:00 p.m. in winter, 7:30 p.m. in summer).

Ticket – full price € 16,00 + € 2,00 booking fee

The ticket is valid for 24 hours and also allows entry to the Roman Forum and Palatine Hill. (Colosseum Archaeological Park)

All the Archaeological Park areas of the Colosseum (Colosseum, Roman Forum and Palatine Imperial Forums) are accessible with a single ticket.
The visit is possible only and exclusively with compulsory online reservation.

www.parcocolosseo.it

Tickets On-Line
https://parcocolosseo.it/en/visit/opening-times-and-tickets

Romepass circuit

The Colosseum is part of the Roma Pass museum circuit and benefits from all the Card advantages.

Distance: 2.5Km –  25min.

 

CIRCO MASSIMO

THE LARGEST SPECTACLE BUILDING OF ANTIQUITY 

Leaving the Rione Sant’Angelo and the Ghetto,  you will surely not be able to resist the temptation to visit the Basilica of Santa Maria in Cosmedin, with the famous Mouth of Truth, as well as the Temple of Hercules and the Temple of Virile Fortune, dating back to the 2nd century B.C.

Immediately afterwards the area of the Circus Maximus will appear in front of your eyes.

The Circus Maximus was the largest spectacle building of antiquity and one of the largest (600 m long by 140 m wide).
Intended for chariot races, it was a majestic monument capable of accommodating hundreds of thousands of spectators. The first arrangement of the valley as a place for chariot races dates back to the Tarquini kings’ time, but it was not until Julius Caesar built a real brick  Circus.  The races that took place in the Circus were the most popular competitive activities among the Romans, in addition to the gladiatorial games: the people idolised the drivers of the chariots

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Repeatedly by fire, the Circus Maximus was almost wholly rebuilt under Trajan, to whose period most of the currently visible structures belong. The Circus remained until the first decades of the 6th century.

The Circus was demolished,  plundered and used as farmland, until the beginning of the 20th century, when it became an archaeological promenade.

Today it is possible to visit the galleries that once led to the steps of the cavea (the senators on the ground floor and the plebs on the upper floor). You can walk along the external paved road found during the excavations, where there is a sizeable basin-drinking trough made of travertine slabs and visit some rooms used as shops (tabernae). You can see the Arch of Titus’s bases in the central area of the arena, one of Rome’s largest triumphal arches. And the medieval 12th-century Torre della Moletta.

According to one of the legends leading to Rome’s origins, it is here that the Rape of the Sabine Women took place. When Rome was founded, the legend says Romulus wanted to make alliances with neighbouring peoples and try to obtain women to procreate with to populate the new city. However, the neighbouring peoples refused to grant this favour to the new king of Rome. Romulus then decided to deceive them by organising a fabulous spectacle in their favour to lure them in and then kidnap their women during the event. A war ensues, which is interrupted only thanks to the pleas of the women who have suffered the affront.

 The men listened to their pleas, stopped fighting and entered a period of peace.

PALATINE

At 40 metres above the Roman Forum, the Palatine is the most central of the seven hills and the oldest part of Rome’s city. The hill was the site of essential city cults, including that of the Magna Mater. Between the 2nd and 1st centuries B.C., it became the residential quarter of the Roman aristocracy, with elegant residences characterised by exceptional pictorial and floor decorations, such as those preserved in the House of the Griffins. Augustus symbolically chose the hill as his residence site, which consisted of several buildings, including the House of Livia. Later the hill became the imperial palaces’ site: the Domus Tiberiana, the Domus Transitoria, and finally the Domus Flavia.  During the Renaissance, the Palatine became the property of aristocratic families who planted villas, vineyards, and gardens: part of the charming Horti Farnesiani, on the upper part of the hill Loggia Stati-Mattei still preserved today.

Mythology tells us that the cave where Luperca, the she-wolf who suckled Romulus and Remus, lived was on Mount Palatine.

Palatine Hill is a very picturesque place where you can find the most extraordinary corners of Ancient Rome and where you have the Roman Forum’s best views.

Palatine Museum: This small museum display finds from excavations in the Palatine area. It contains sculptures, frescoes, mosaics and other objects from the hill’s heyday.

Visiting the Palatine Hill      

Access to the Palatine is only possible by booking online.

The Palatine is part of the Colosseum Archaeological Park and can be visited with a single ticket. (Forum – Colosseum – Palatine).

Opening hours:
09.30 – 18.30 from 1 January to 24 October.
09.30 – 16.30 from 25 October to 31 January.

Distance 1.5 km 15 min. Bus 628 – 160

Romepass circuit

TREVI’S FOUNTAIN

THE BEST KNOWN OF THE ROMAN FOUNTAINS

The Trevi Fountain is the largest and most spectacular of Rome’s fountains and one of its undisputed symbols. It takes its name Trevi about the ‘Trivio’ (i.e. the crossroads of three streets) which corresponded to the current Piazza dei Crociferi.

The origin of the Fountain dates back to 19 B.C., when it was the end of the aqueduct, the Aqua Virgo (Virgin Aqueduct), the only one of the ancient aqueducts still in use today, which Marcus Vipsanius Agrippa brought to Rome to supply his baths.

 


 

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The Trevi Fountain was built by Pope Clement XII in 1732, based on architect Nicola Salvi’s design. The Fountain, entirely leaning against Palazzo Poli’s back, is 20 metres wide and 26 metres high and rises over the large basin like a broad cliff. The central part develops like a triumphal arch, with a large niche and Corinthian columns at the sides. The top centre is an inscription ‘CLEMENS XII PONT MAX’, reminding us that Clement XII commissioned the construction. The centre is the statue of Ocean driving a shell-shaped chariot, pulled by two winged sea horses, one angry and the other peaceful, guided by two tritons, one young and the other adult, to highlight the different characteristics of the age of man and nature.

There are also two reliefs alluding to the legend of the spring and the history of the aqueduct and four statues that, in order: looking from the left, symbolise the Abundance of Fruit, the Fertility of the Fields, the Gifts of Autumn and the Amenity of the Meadows. In the side niches Salubrity and Abundance statues. Two allegorical figures are extolling the beneficial effects of water:  On the right, the Virgin points out the spring to the Roman soldiers. On the other side, Agrippa ordering the start of construction work on the aqueduct. The statues of Salubrity and Abundance, placed in the side niches, complete the decorations.

According to tradition, the tourist who throws a coin into the Fountain will surely return to Rome.

When to visit the Trevi Fountain

Whichever way you look at it, the Trevi Fountain will magically appear before your eyes, filling them with wonder. The Fountain is always beautiful, even during the busiest hours of the day, but superb at night. It is only a 12-minute walk from home, so you choose the time of day that suits you best.

 

Distance: 1.5 km 15 min Bus 62

SPANISH STEPS

THE CITY DRAWING ROOM

Piazza di Spagna, one of the most beautiful and famous squares in Rome owes its name to the Spanish Embassy located nearby.

The Staircase, built at the behest of Pope Benedict XIII between 1723-25, was inaugurated during the pontificate of Pope Innocent XIII. It was designed by Francesco de Santis who created what was later described as the most famous ‘architectural spectacle’ in the world. It consists of 12 ramps and 135 travertine steps, the Staircase also includes several resting areas.

De Santis’ intention was to create a staircase that would be a meeting place for all citizens. In fact, even today, the stairway is a meeting place, so much so that it is called the ‘drawing room of Rome’. Even though it has been forbidden to stand on its steps for some time.

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At the foot of the steps is the famous Fountain known as the ‘Barcaccia’. It was built in the Baroque style by Pietro Bernini (father of Gian Lorenzo) in 1627 for Pope Urban VIII. Pietro Bernini exploited the depiction of a boat in apparent danger of sinking to eliminate the problem of low water pressure feeding the Fountain. The bees and suns decorating the Fountain are symbols of Urban VIII’s family, the Barberini.
The Twin Palaces
At the beginning of the Staircase on both sides are the twin palaces. The one on the right side is called the Casina Rossa.

The Casina Rossa belonged to a lady called Anna Angeletti, who rented out rooms to tourists visiting Rome.  It was here that the poet Keats, who had rented a room on the second floor with his friend, the painter Joseph Severn, spent the last days of his life. He died there on 23 February 1821 at the age of 26.
The Casina Rossa is now a charming little museum dedicated to the poet and the other English Romantic poets Shelley and Lord Byron. On the other side of the Staircase, stands the twin palace. On the ground floor is Babington’s tea room, founded in 1893 by two enterprising English ladies, the place still exists today and if you feel like treating yourself to a little luxury it is a recommended place despite the prices.

If you love art and have some time on your hands, you could also visit the Giorgio De Chirico House Museum in the 17th-century Palazzetto del Borgognoni at number 31 Piazza di Spagna.

At the top of the steps from which you can admire one of the most beautiful views of Rome is the 1495 Trinità dei Monti Church. Inside there are two works by Daniele da Volterra, the same artist called by Pope Pius IV to cover the nudity of the Last Judgement in the Sistine Chapel and since then nicknamed “braghettone”.

The interior of the Convent of Trinità dei Monti has preserved for centuries some wonders such as the cloister, two anamorphosis frescoes on the corridors of the cloister, a sundial (the so-called astrolabe), the refectory painted by the Jesuit Andrea Pozzo, and the Chapel of Mater Admirabilis.

From Trinità dei Monti along the Pincio promenade you can reach Piazza del Popolo or Villa Borghese.

Piazza di Spagna is an unmissable point of departure or arrival for lovers of shopping all ‘around are concentrated all the streets that host the windows of the major designers in the world.
And Via Margutta, the street where Vacanze Romane was set, is just a few metres away. Walking along Via Margutta or Via del Babuino you arrive at Piazza del Popolo.

Keats – Shelley House
Monday – Saturday 10am-1pm / 2pm-6pmClosed
Sunday,
Full price ticket: € 6,00
Website: www.keats-shelley-house.org Email: info@ksh.roma.it

Giorgio De Chirico House Museum
Mondays, Thursdays, Fridays, Saturdays and the last Sunday of the month from
3 p.m. to 7 p.m.
Ticket: € 7,00
Visits by appointment only, booking required
Website: www.fondazionedechirico.org/casa-museo/
Online booking: www.fondazionedechiricoprenotazioni.org/prenota.asp

College of Trinità dei Monti-Anamorfosi
on the second and fourth Wednesday of the month at 5 p.m.
Saturdays at 9.30 a.m. and 11 a.m.
Ticket: 12 € Children under 12 free.

Reservation is compulsory.
The request must be made exclusively by email,
by Monday for Wednesday – and by Thursday for Saturday.

secretariat.tdm@emmanuelco.org

Babington’s Tea Room

Open every day from 10:00 to 21:30

Distance 1,9 km 20′ minutes  Bus 62 or bus 628 

 

 

PIAZZA del POPOLO

IMMENSE AND SCENIC

Not far from the Spanish Steps since the Empire’s times was Rome’s entrance for those coming from the north.
It was Designed by Valadier has a helicoidal shape and is characterised by several fountains, the four in the centre are the base of an Egyptian obelisk of 24 metres. Piazza del Popolo’s obelisk is the first one transported to Rome at Augustus era and initially placed in the Circus Maximus.  Then there are the other fountains, the two shell-shaped ones with groups of sculptures on top, symbolising the god Neptune with tritons and the goddess Rome with the personifications of the Tiber and the Aniene on either side of the square. There are also two fountains made from ancient sarcophagi on the side of the Church of Santa Maria del Popolo and the symmetrically opposed building.  The obelisk backgrounds are Carlo Fontana’s twin churches Santa Maria di Montesanto (1662-1679) and Santa Maria dei Miracoli (1675-1681).

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SANTA MARIA DEL POPOLO

Santa Maria del Popolo is one of the most significant buildings of the Roman Renaissance, not only for its architectural features but also for the paintings and sculptures it houses. The Church arose from a small chapel built at the behest of Pope Paschal II. Rebuilt in the 15th century at the time of Pope Sixtus IV, it was modified in the 17th century and is associated with Bramante, Sansovino, Pinturicchio, Mino Da Fiesole, Raphael, Bernini and Caravaggio. Caravaggio’s works include The Conversion of St. Paul and The Crucifixion of St. Peter, which together with Annibale Carracci’s Assumption, adorn the Cerasi chapel to the left of the high altar.

The Church

Inside there are numerous tomb slabs on the floor, dating from the Middle Ages and the Renaissance. The chapels abound in funerary monuments and works of art. The most important of these is the Chigi Chapel, designed by Raphael for the banker Agostino Chigi from 1513 and completed in 1656 by Gian Lorenzo Bernini. Raphael made the cartoons for the dome’s mosaics and the design for the pyramid tombs of Agostino Chigi. The statue of Jonah was made by Lorenzetto to a design by Raphael, while Habakkuk and the Angel and Daniel in the lion’s den are the work of Bernini. The altarpiece is by Sebastiano del Piombo and Salviati.

Cerasi Chapel: Caravaggio 

The Chapel, near the altar, houses two masterpieces by Caravaggio: the Crucifixion of St Peter, painted around 1601, and the Conversion of St Paul, from the same period. The two canvases, painted in oils, were commissioned from Caravaggio in September 1600 by Tiberio Cerasi. To Annibale, Carracci was commissioned to paint the altarpiece depicting the Assumption of the Virgin.

Free admission
Workdays and Saturdays 8.30 – 12.00 / 16.00 – 18.00

Distance 2 km bus 628

THE TREASURES of ROME

Rome has an impressive number of places to visit that a year would not be enough to see. Places of Worship, Small Churches, Memorable Monuments, Small Treasures and Jewels set in every corner. Testimonies of Immortal Artists, Popes, Emperors, Historical figures great and small who have left their mark with their artworks or deeds. So, if you have time or your stay allows it, do not miss a walk on the Appia Antica and the Park of the Aqueducts, discover the Catacombs, the Baths of Caracalla, the Domus Aurea, Hadrian’s Villa in Tivoli or the archaeological excavations of Ostia Antica, or the Ara Pacis.  Visit the Church of the SS Quattro, the Church of San Pietro in Vincoli with the Tomb of Julius II sculpted by Michelangelo, Sant’Andrea al Quirinale, Sant’Andrea della Valle, Sant’Ignazio, the Scala Santa, the Chapel of the Monte di Pietà. The Mitrei, La Casina delle Civette, Piazza Mincio.          
Discover the masterpieces of Michelangelo, Tiepolo, Raphael, Bernini, Borromini, the palaces, the small and large museums, the private collections, the fountains, the villas and parks. Underground Rome, the many curiosities. Many of these places are within easy reach. Others are very close. Don’t miss a visit to Palazzo Doria Pamphili, Palazzo Colonna, Villa Farnesina and many, many other things.

ARCHAEOLOGICAL TREASURES

    

CARACALLA BATHS
APPIA ANTICA ARCHAEOLOGICAL PARK
AQUEDUCTS PARK
MAUSELO of CECILIA METELLA
CASTRUM CAETANI
VILLA  of MAXENTIUS and MAUSELIUS of ROMOLUS
VILLA OF THE QUINTILES
ANCIENT OSTIA
VILLA OF ADRIAN in Tivoli

 

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TERME di CARACALLA
Viale Terme di Caracalla, 52

Among the most imposing and fascinating complexes of ancient Rome, Terme of Caracalla are still impressive today owing to their extensive walls whose ruins are often considerably high.
Mandatory reservation.

Distance 3,5 Km   Bus 628 from Piazza Venezia

 Roma Pass

 PARCO ARCHEOLOGICO DELL’APPIA ANTICA

Entrances: Via Appia Antica, 161, Via Appia Nuova, 1092, Via Appia Antica, 153

Via Appia Antica seduces with its picturesque views and enchanting atmosphere, the Appia Antica Way with its outstanding monuments is the faithful witness to the ages.

Mausoleo di Cecilia Metella is the most impressive funeral monument built along the Appia Antica’s third mile. It has become symbolic and erected on a hill to commemorate the Roman noblewoman. She was daughter and wife of the two of the most distinguished Roman families of the late Republican age.

 Villa dei Quintili is the largest villa of Roman suburbs overlooked the countryside with its cryptoporticus, lavatories, and small terraced baths, thereby creating a spectacular scenery that has been partly brought to light today.

Villa di Massenzio and Mausoleo di Romolo: the archaeological complex, which extends between the second and third mile the Appian Way, consists of three principal constructions: the Palace, the Roman Circus and the Dynastic Mausoleum. All were designed as an interlinked architectural unit to celebrate Emperor Maxentius.

CUMULATIVE TICKET: Mausoleo di Cecilia Metella e Castrum Caetani + Villa dei Quintili.

www. romapass.vivaticket.it.

 Distance 7,5 Km          Bus 118 from Piazza Venezia

PARCO ARCHEOLOGICO di OSTIA ANTICA
Viale dei Romagnoli, 717 (Ostia Antica)

The wide area of the excavations overlooks the “Tiber River Gate”, connecting Rome to the sea. The ancient city testifies to the imposing Roman buildings and reaffirm the commercial and economic importance of the ancient capital of the world.

ROMA PASS

 

Distance: 25 Km   Bus 30 To Piramide + Train Roma Lido (To Ostia Antica)

 

VILLA ADRIANA  TIVOLI      
Emperor Hadrian built this country villa for himself and his court, and it bears unique testimony to the grandeur and architectural and decorative characteristics of the period. Today it exists as an immense park, extending over 80 hectares and dotted with several Roman ruins and spas and houses from the 1700s and all set in an environment charged with ancient fascination.

The grounds also contain the “Teatro Marittimo”, an artificial island that was a private residence of the Emperor and other exciting locations such as “Canopo”, a huge rectangular pool encircled by sculptures recall the Serapeo. Excavations, still in course, have brought to light an intricate system of roads which lead to the imperial residence.

Full € 10,00 Free Under 18 years old
Ticket on line www.coopculture.it/ticket.

Distance 40 km Bus 64 to Termini, +Metro B to Ponte Mammolo, + Bus Cotral Roma Tivoli via Prenestina to Villa Adriana.

 

 

 

CATACOMBS

Catacombs

The catacombs can be a memorable visit.

There are more than sixty catacombs in Rome. It is currently only possible to visit a few of them.

The most interesting are:
The Catacombs of San Sebastiano, the Catacombs of San Callisto, and Priscilla.

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Catacombs of San Sebastiano 12 km long they take their name from St Sebastian, a soldier who became a martyr for converting to Christianity while you’re there pay a visit to the Church and enjoy Bernini’s latest work Salvatore Mundi.

Via Appia Antica, 136. Open Monday to Saturday: 9 am to 12 pm and 2 pm to 5 pm. € 8,00

Catacombs of St. Callistus With a network of tunnels more than 20 kilometres long, the tombs of St. Callistus were the burial place of 16 pontiffs and dozens of Christian martyrs. It is the best known and probably the most visited catacomb.

Via Appia Antica, 126. Open from Thursday to Tuesday, 9:00 to 12:00 and 14:00 to 17:00. € 8,00

The Catacombs of Priscilla are in  Via Salaria, a little way from the centre. They are quite impressive. They contain some frescoes dating back more than 1800 years with the first depictions of the Virgin Mary.

Via Salaria, 430. Open from Tuesday to Sunday: 9:00 to 12:00 and 14:00 to 17:00. € 8,00

Catacombs of Domitilla Discovered in 1593, these 15+ kilometre catacombs dues the name at Vespasian’s granddaughter.
Via Delle Sette Chiese, 280. Open from Wednesday to Monday, 9 am to 12 pm and 14:00 to 17:00.

Catacombs of St. Agnes St. Agnes, a Christian martyr, was buried in these catacombs, which later took her name.
Via Nomentana, 349: Open 9 am to 12 pm and  4 pm to 6 pm; closed on Sunday mornings and Monday afternoons.

To the Catacombs of San Calisto and San Sebastiano Distance 4 km Bus 118

Catacombs of Domitilla Bus 716

Catacombs of Priscilla: Distance 8.5 km Bus 63

CARAVAGGIO

CARAVAGGIO in ROME

Rome is home to some of Caravaggio’s most important works.

Some of them are already on your doorstep between the Pantheon and Piazza Navona, where in the San Luigi dei Francesi Church. At the end of the left aisle, in the Contarelli Chapel, you can admire the “Vocation of St. Matthew”, the “Martyrdom of St. Matthew“, and “St. Matthew and the Angel”, which Caravaggio painted when he was only 20 years old.
Not far away is the Basilica di Sant’Agostino in Campo Marzio, which in the first chapel on the left, next to the entrance, houses the “Madonna dei Pellegrini”, painted between 1604 and 1606, with Mary’s face “borrowed” from Lena Antognetti, a famous courtesan of the time.

Continuing your walk in less than 15 minutes, you arrive at Piazza del Popolo inside the Basilica of Santa Maria del Popolo. In the Cerasi Chapel, Caravaggio has two great works, “Conversion of St Paul” and “Crucifixion of St Peter“, made between 1600 and 1601.

It is possible to discover other works by Caravaggio at the Doria Pamphilj Gallery, which houses three works by the master: the “Penitent Magdalene” dated around 1595, the “Rest during the Flight into Egypt” also dated around 1595, and one of the two versions of “Saint John the Baptist” dated 1602. The Doria Pamphilj Gallery is located in via del Corso 305 not far from piazza Venezia.

At the Vatican Museums:
You can find the “Deposition of Christ” made between 1602 and 1604.
At Palazzo Barberini in Via delle Quattro Fontane, “Judith and Holofernes” of 1599. And the “Narcissus”, one of Caravaggio’s most impressive works.
At the Capitoline Museums in the hall of the Pinacoteca, there are two works: the “Buona Ventura” painted between 1593 and 1594 and the “San Giovanni Battista” of 1602.

The National Gallery of Ancient Art in Palazzo Corsini houses the second version of ‘St. John the Baptist’.

And at the Galleria Borghese, the place with the largest number of Caravaggio’s works in Rome. The Boy with a Basket of Fruit”‘ and the ‘Sick Bacchus’  two works from Caravaggio’s youth and the ‘Madonna of the Palafrenieri’ and ‘David with the Head of Goliath‘  works of more mature Caravaggio

 


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Trastevere è bella da scoprire di giorno e viverla la notte.

Qui se saprete scegliere, potrete trascorrere  delle magnifiche serate all’insegna del divertimento e della buona cucina. Anche se le buone  trattorie non sono tante ed ancora più raro qualche ottimo ristorante. Ma penso di essere in grado di suggerirvi qualche buon indirizzo.

Trastevere è un quartiere dalla lunga storia, che parte addirittura dal tempo degli Etruschi, ma fino ai tempi di Augusto questa zona è rimasta al di fuori della città vera e propria; e soltanto alla fine dell’età repubblicana Trastevere cominciò ad essere un’area abitata. Diventando in età imperiale un immenso quartiere abitato da operai ed artigiani e gente del popolo.  Il rione ha conservato per  secoli le caratteristiche originali, mostrando con ogni evidenza  il suo  aspetto ed il segno inequivocabile di povertà e di precarietà che lo distinguevano dal resto della città. Un ammasso disordinato di case e casupole distribuite in un groviglio di strette vie e vicoli bui intorno a primitive chiese.
Queste vie hanno mantenuto  in loro carattere fortemente  popolare anche nei secoli successivi. Qui non  risiedettero mai cardinali, o persone di alto rango, il  rione a parte qualche rara eccezione  non fu mai interessato dalla costruzione di chiese sontuose né tantomeno vi furono creati palazzi aristocratici, al massimo ci andarono a vivere figure  di modesto livello.  Solo negli ultimi decenni Trastevere è diventata una zona prestigiosa ed anche molto ambita pur conservando il suo carattere popolare. Trastevere è rimasta immutata nei secoli fino all’ apertura all’inizio dello scorso secolo del “viale del Re”, poi “viale del Lavoro” oggi  viale Trastevere, che ne ha stravolto l’anima  dividendo Trastevere in  due parti mai più rinsaldate.

Il quartiere è molto grande e le cose da vedere sono potenzialmente infinite.

Vicoli, Chiese, Angoli Suggestivi
Trastevere è un luogo che va vissuto a piedi. La cosa più bella da fare è passeggiare, guardarsi attorno ed esplorare il rione senza una meta precisa. Ovunque andrete a Trastevere troverete luoghi suggestivi!.
Come la Chiesa di San Cosimato, ed il suo Chiostro quasi segreto ma incredibilmente bello. La Basilica di Santa Maria in Trastevere, e i suoi mosaici, Sant’Agata in Trastevere.
E poi Verso via della Lungara in una parte di Trastevere meno frequentata potrete visitare l’Orto Botanico,  Villa Farnesina,  il Palazzo e Galleria Corsini e la chiesa di Ss. Rufina e Seconda  del XII secolo, San Giacomo alla Lungara o in Settignano, Santa Maria della Luce IV secolo.
Verso il Gianicolo
San Pietro in Montorio ed il tempietto del Bramante.

A Sud oltre Viale trastevere
La Basilica di Santa Cecilia, San Benedetto in Piscinula XI secolo, San Crisogono V secolo, San Francesco d’Assisi a Ripa Grande XI secolo, San Giovanni Battista dei Genovesi, e questi sono solo alcuni degliinfiniti tesori di Trastevere.

SECRET ROME

The least known Rome

 

Rome is an immense treasure of beautiful places to visit. Many monuments and sites that everyone knows. But there are many other equally beautiful and curious places that if you have time left or your stay is longer than the canonical three days or if this is not the first time you visit the city we invite you to get to know some other interesting places.

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ACETARY ARCH
The small courtyard of Arco degli Acetari is where time seems to have stopped in the Middle Ages. Not far from Campo de’ Fiori, in Via del Pellegrino, at number 19, you will find an entrance that leads you into a small courtyard whose architecture, colours, plants, and ancient atmosphere will surely amaze you.

The Church of St Ignatius Loyola

The Church of Sant’Ignazio Loyola is located between the Pantheon and Piazza Venezia. It overlooks Piazza di Sant’Ignazio the Rococo Baroque square designed by the architect Filippo Raguzzini around 1728 evokes a real theatre scene, with three symmetrical buildings with concave shapes. They represent the superimposition of three ellipses.  Inside the church in the 17th century, Andrea Pozzo created some perspective visions of rare beauty.

THE FAKE DOME
It is one of Andrea Pozzo‘s most famous works and is best known for its effect of awe and wonder.
With a play on perspective, the artist creates a false architecture through which Pozzo’s painting shifts the vanishing point of perspective towards the nave’s vault. The effect captures the visitor advancing through the church. It looks like a dome, but a closer look reveals that the ceiling is flat!

THE VAULT
The large fresco in the vault is the centrepiece of the church’s decoration. Pozzo creates a play of perspective that gives the sensation of infinite space.

THE PRESBYTERY
The perspective effect is terrific: the apse wall looks polygonal when it is actually concave.

 SCIARRA GALLERY
A few steps away from the Trevi Fountain, you can’t miss the wonderful Sciarra Gallery. To find it, you have to walk along Via Minghetti, and at n° 10, after crossing the entrance, you will be inside the wonderful Sciarra Gallery with its grand liberty style. Access is free, but it is only open during daylight hours and rarely on Sundays.

The anamorphosis of the Convent of Trinità dei Monti

At the top of the Spanish Steps is the Church of Trinità dei Monti with its Convent. The convent of Trinità dei Monti The latter is a treasure chest containing several masterpieces unknown to most people that really deserve to be discovered. Among them is the anamorphic painting of St Francis of Paola: if observed from a transverse view, the saint appears under the branches of an olive tree, but if you look at it from a frontal perspective, the saint disappears, and a coastal landscape appears.

Anamorphism is an optical effect whereby the subject of a painting only appears to the viewer when seen from a certain point.
There is also a spectacular view of the city from the church towers.

When to visit: second and fourth Wednesday of the month at 9 am, and Saturdays at 9 am, and 11 am with a guided tour. Reservation is compulsory on the Convent’s website.

 ZUCCARI Palace
Climb to the top of the Spanish Steps and turn right onto Via Gregoriana, where you will find Palazzo Zuccari. Also known as the House of Monsters, it is undoubtedly a curious as well as exciting stop. It was built at the end of the 1500s with rather bizarre architecture, which arouses a lot of amazement. The entrance to the palace was designed by its creator, Federico Zuccari, to inspire fear and astound guests once they crossed the threshold with the beauty of the garden (which no longer exists) behind the door.

When to visit: The palace is now home to the Hertziana Library and can be visited by appointment.

 

COPPEDE’ DISTRICT

Away from the centre, I invite you to discover the Coppedè district.

The Coppedè district, which is not really a district but only a tiny area within the Trieste district, can be reached by tram 19 or bus 60. It is a district that few people know about, unique in its kind, where the buildings’ architectural style and uniqueness (the Palazzo del Ragno, the Palazzi degli Ambasciatori and the Villini delle Fate) that rise around the Fountain of Frogs will surely leave you fascinated.

THE HOUSE OF OWLS
In the Trieste district, not far from the Coppedè district, inside Villa Torlonia is the Casina delle Civette, a mountain hut transformed into an Art Nouveau residence at the behest of Alessandro Torlonia. The name comes from the stained glass windows on the ground floor. The Casina delle Civette is part of the network of municipal museums in Rome. It can be visited from Tuesday to Sunday together with the 19th century Casino Nobile, home to the Museum of the Villa and the collection of works of the Roman School, the Casino dei Principi, home to exhibitions and the Archives of the Roman School, and the Mussolini Bunker.

  

TRASTEVERE
Trastevere is not only restaurants and folklore

In Piazza San Cosimato, even if it is not easy to find, there is the Cloister of San Cosimato, even if it is not so easy to find. You get there through a doorway that overlooks the square on the side opposite the market. Then, cross a small garden that leads to the two enchanting cloisters. Access is free. The first cloister dates back to 1260, the second to 1400. The Cloisters are of the Regina Margherita Hospital, but access is accessible to anyone wishing to visit them.

The Ancient Pharmacy of Santa Maria della Scala

The Antica Farmacia di Trastevere is the oldest pharmacy in Rome and was established in 1600. Initially, it was part of the monastery next door and was for internal use. Then, it was opened to the public and became the most famous apothecary’s shop in Rome, where prominent personalities such as princes, popes and doctors were supplied, so much so that it became known as the ‘pharmacy of the popes’.
Today, it still retains the original furnishings, ampoules and machinery used to create ointments and pills. However, when you cross the pharmacy threshold, you will step back in time because everything here has stopped in 1700.  The Ancient Pharmacy of Santa Maria della Scala remained in operation until 1954.

On request, it can be visited by writing an email to this address anticafarmaciadellascala@gmail.com and asking when visits are scheduled. There are usually 2 or 3 per week at various times. The visit lasts about 40 minutes and costs €5.

THE BOTANICAL GARDEN

In Trastevere, there is a beautiful botanical garden where you can visit the cactus greenhouses, walk through the Mediterranean forest, admire hundreds of different roses, walk through the Japanese garden and even enter a butterfly greenhouse.

The best time to visit the Botanical Garden is in spring, especially between the end of March and April, when the cherry trees bloom.

 

The Botanical Garden is open every day until 18.30

 

 THE CAPUCHIN CRYPT

The Capuchin Crypt was decorated with the bones of 4000 Capuchin friars collected over some 300 years from the Cemetery of the Capuchin Order. The idea may seem macabre, but it is actually a way of exorcising death and emphasising the importance of the soul over the body.
It is on Via Veneto in the Church of Santa Maria Immacolata

Access to the crypt is by purchasing a ticket for €8, which is open every day. In addition, it is possible to combine the visit with a concert of Gregorian chants inside the church with a special ticket.

THE MUNICIPAL ROSE GARDEN

On the Aventine Hill, between April and July, the municipal rose garden displays more than 1100 varieties of roses from all over the world – an unmissable spectacle of nature. In the 3rd century B.C., a temple to the goddess Flora stood here and was celebrated in April. Covered with vegetable gardens and vineyards until the end of the 16th century, in 1645, it became the Jewish garden with a small community cemetery attached. When it became the site of the new municipal rose garden. In gratitude to the Jewish community, which had made it possible to recreate the rose garden in a sacred place, a stele was placed at the entrance to the garden in memory of its previous use. The paths dividing the flowerbeds in the collection area took the form of the menorah, the seven-branched candelabrum, the symbol of Judaism.

On Rome’s birthday, 21 April, the Rose Garden opens every year and remains open during the summer. It also opens for 2 weeks in October for the autumn flowering.

NON-CATHOLIC CEMETERY

Close the Pyramid of Caius Cestius, a small cemetery called the Non-Catholic Cemetery or the English Cemetery.
Its history begins in the early 1700s. At that time, ecclesiastical regulations prohibited the burial of non-Catholics in churches or consecrated lands. Therefore Protestants, as well as people of other faiths, did not have a proper burial place. It was not until around 1716 that land was granted for the burial of English Protestants in exile. From then on, the area between the pyramid and the Aurelian Wall became a cemetery for non-Catholics. Among others buried in the Cemetery are the Swedish sculptor Hendrik Christian Andersen, Antonio Gramsci, one of Goethe’s sons, John Keats, Richard Wyatt, and the English actress Belinda Lee.

Today the Cemetery can be visited every day from 9 am to 5 pm and on Sundays from 9 am to 1 pm.

Nasons

The nasoni, or cast-iron fountains that continuously spout drinking water, are one of the symbols of Rome. But among all the nasoni in Rome, there are about 2000. Some are more unusual and have become very rare: they are those with three spouts. There are only three left and they are located in Via della Cordonata, Via di San Teodoro and Piazza della Rotonda.

THE FOUNTAIN OF BOOKS (and other local fountains)

The Fountain of Books is located in Via degli Staderari, a stone’s throw from Piazza Navona. This street was the ancient seat of the Sapienza University, and the fountain is a tribute to culture. In the centre is a deer, as it was the historical symbol of the Rione Sant’Eustachio.

This fountain is part of a project of the municipality of Rome, which in the 1920s entrusted the architect Pietro Lombardi with the creation of several fountains representing the districts of Rome. So if you walk around Rome you can find the Fontana delle Anfore, the Fontana delle Palle di Cannone, the Fontana delle Tiare, the Fontana della Pigna, the Fontana delle Botte and the Fontana dei Monti.

The Church of Sant’Ivo alla Sapienza

Already the courtyard of the Church of Sant’Ivo alla Sapienza is worth a visit, but if you are lucky enough to find the church open usually but not always on Sundays, don’t miss the chance.

The Janiculum Lighthouse

You might be a little surprised during a walk on the Janiculum when you come across a lighthouse. Obviously, it is not a lighthouse that guides sailors, but a monument built in 1911 and donated to the city of Rome by the Italians of Argentina.

 

 Rome’s round churches

There are hundreds of churches in Rome, but only a few are round. This particular conformation of the buildings gives the places of worship a very striking appearance.

Apart from the famous Pantheon, there are two other churches in Rome with a circular plan. The Basilica di Santo Stefano Rotondo al Celio, one of Rome’s oldest Christian places of worship, was built in the 5th century. You can admire the 34 martyrology frescoes and a 7th century Byzantine mosaic in the chapel on the interior walls. And the Mausoleum of St Constance is imposing and surprising. Its architecture is characterised by two circular spaces and the columns supporting the structure that create a particular play of light and shadow.

THE MOST BEAUTIFUL CHURCHES IN ROME

Churches are not only the symbol of Christianity but also preserve masterpieces of immense beauty.
There are more than 900 churches in Rome, , including Medieval, Renaissance, Baroque and Gothic ones, and they must be included in our itinerary.
In addition to the churches you will undoubtedly visit, such as St. Peter’s and the Pantheon (yes, the Pantheon is a church), I think these are the most beautiful and exciting for their artistic heritage that they preserve but also for what they represent.

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HISTORICAL CENTRE
BASILICA OF SANTA MARIA DEL POPOLO
Piazza del Popolo 12 www.santamariadelpopolo.com
CHURCH OF SANT’AGOSTINO
Piazza di S. Agostino www.agostiniani.it/comunita-agostiniane-provincia/basilica-s-agostino-roma/
CHURCH OF SANTA MARIA SOPRA MINERVA
Piazza della Minerva 42 www.santamariasopraminerva.it
BASILICA SANT’ANDREA DELLA VALLE
Corso Vittorio Emmanuele II.  www.santandrea.teatinos.org
CHURCH OF SANT’IVO ALLA SAPIENZA
Corso Rinascimento 40 www.sivosapienza.eu
CHURCH OF SAN LUIGI DEI FRANCESI
Piazza di S. Luigi de’ Francesi www.eglisesfrancaisesarome.it
CHURCH OF SANT’AGNESE IN AGONE
Piazza Navona www.santagneseinagone.org/
SAN GIROLAMO della CARITA
Via di Monserrato, 54-84, www.chiesasangirolamo.org/
SANTA MARIA DELLA PACE
Arco della Pace 5 (Piazza Navona) www.chiostrodelbramante.it/
SANTA MARIA IN ARACOELI
Scala dell’Arce Capitolina, 12 (Campidoglio) www.sanmarcoevangelista.it/
CHURCH OF SAINT IGNATIUS OF LOYOLA
Piazza Sant’Ignazio www.santignazio.gesuiti.it/
COLOSSEUM
BASILICA OF SAN GIOVANNI IN LATERANO
Piazza di S. Giovanni in Laterano, 4, www.vatican.va/sangiovanni/basilica
BASILICA OF SANTA CROCE IN GERUSALEMME
Piazza di S. Croce in Gerusalemme www.santacroce.it
BASILICA OF SANTA MARIA MAGGIORE
P.za di Santa Maria Maggiore www.vatican.va/various/basiliche/sm_maggiore/it
BASILICA OF SANTA PRASSEDE
Via di Santa Prassede 9 www.santaprassede.wordpress.com/
SAN PIETRO IN VINCOLI
Piazza di San Pietro in Vincoli, 4/a, www.lateranensi.org/sanpietroinvincoli/
BASILICA OF SAN CLEMENTE
Via Labicana, 95, www.basilicasanclemente.com
SANTI QUATTRO CORONATI
Via dei SS. Quattro, 20, www.monacheagostinianesantiquattrocoronati.it/
SANTO STEFANO ROTONDO
Via Santo Stefano Rotondo, 7 www.cgu.it/it/santo-stefano-rotondo/
SANTI GIOVANNI E PAOLO
Piazza Dei SS. Giovanni e Paolo, www.basilicassgiovanniepaolo.it
ROMAN FORUM
BASILICA OF SAINTS COSMA AND DAMIANO
Via dei Fori Imperiali 1 www.cosmadamiano.com
BASILICA OF SAINT FRANCESCA ROMANA
Piazza di Santa Francesca Romana, 4, (Roman Forum)
APPIA ANTICA – CARACALLA – AVENTINE
BASILICA OF SAINT SEBASTIAN OUTSIDE THE WALLS
Via Appia Antica, 136 www.sansebastianofuorilemura.org
SAINT NEREUS AND ACHILLEUS
Viale delle Terme di Caracalla, 28 www.nereoachilleo.it
SAINT SABINA
Piazza Pietro D’Illiria, 1 https://www.turismoroma.it/basilica-di-santa-sabina-allaventino
SANTA PRISCA
Via di Santa Prisca, 11 www.santaprisca.it
BASILICA OF SAN BONIFACIO AND SANT’ALESSIO
P.za di Sant’Alessio, 23, www.santalessiocrs.it
BASILICA OF SANTA MARIA IN COSMEDIN
Piazza della Bocca della Verità, 18, www.cosmedin.org
TRASTEVERE
BASILICA OF SANTA MARIA IN TRASTEVERE
Piazza Santa Maria in Trastevere www.santamariaintrastevere.it
CHURCH OF SAN BENEDETTO IN PISCINULA
Piazza in Piscinula, 40, www.sanbenedettoinpiscinula.it/
BASILICA OF SANTA CECILIA IN TRASTEVERE
Piazza di Santa Cecilia 22 www.benedettinesantacecilia.it/htm/Basilica.html
SAN PIETRO IN MONTORIO
Piazza di S. Pietro in Montorio, 2 www.sanpietroinmontorio.it
TERMINI/QUIRINAL
BASILICA OF SANTA MARIA DEGLI ANGELI E DEI MARTIRI
Piazza della Repubblica www.santamariadegliangeliroma
CHURCH OF SAN CARLO ALLE QUATTRO FONTANE
Via del Quirinale 23 www.turismoroma.it /church-of-san-carlo-alle-quattro-fontane
CHURCH OF SANT’ANDREA AL QUIRINALE
Via del Quirinale, 30, www.santandrea.gesuiti.it
SAN BERNARDO ALLE TERME
Piazza di S. Bernardo, 105,
CHURCH OF SANTA MARIA DELLA VITTORIA
Via Venti Settembre, 17 www.turismoroma.it/chiesa-di-santa-maria-della-vittoria
CHURCH OF SAN VITALE
Via Nazionale, 194/B www.santivitale.com
OTHER AREAS
BASILICA OF SAN PAOLO FUORI LE MURA
Piazzale San Paolo, 1 www.basilicasanpaolo.org
BASILICA OF SAN LORENZO FUORI LE MURA
Piazzale del Verano, 3, www.basilicadisanlorenzo.com

THE MOST BEAUTIFUL
CHURCHES HISTORICAL CENTRE details

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CHURCH OF SANT’AGNESE IN AGONE
According to tradition, the Church of Sant’Agnese in Agone was built on the site where, according to tradition, St Agnese was exposed naked to the pillory and had her hair miraculously loosened. The present construction was started by Girolamo and Carlo Rainaldi in 1652 and completed by Borromini (1653-1657), who significantly modified it. He designed the façade and dome, while Antonio del Grande and Giovanni Maria Baratta built the twin bell towers. The interior is remarkable for the splendour of the gold and marble, the mosaic floors and the splendid medieval frescoes. In the underground of the Church are the ruins of Domitian’s Circus,
CHIESA DI SANT’AGNESE IN AGONE
Piazza Navona  www.santagneseinagone.org/
CHURCH OF SANT’AGOSTINO
Its construction in Renaissance style began in 1296 at the behest of Boniface VIII and was not completed until 1420. Its current appearance results from a reconstruction in 1479-1483 by Jacopo di Pietrasanta and Sebastiano Fiorentino. It houses the “Madonna dei Pellegrini” by Caravaggio. And the ‘Madonna del Parto’ by Jacopo Sansovino (1521). The third pillar on the left of the nave is decorated with a fresco by Raphael depicting the ‘Prophet Isaiah’ (1512). On the high altar, built-in 1627 to a design by Bernini, is the ‘Virgin and Child’ from the Church of St Sophia in Constantinople. Particularly noteworthy is the altarpiece “Saint Augustine, John the Evangelist and Jerome” by Guercino (1591-1666). St Monica is buried in the Church, in the chapel dedicated to her.
CHIESA DI SANT’AGOSTINO
Piazza di S. Agostino
www.agostiniani.it/comunita-agostiniane-provincia/basilica-s-agostino-roma/
CHURCH OF SANT’ANDREA DELLA VALLE
The great Church of Sant’Andrea della Valle was begun in 1591 to a design by Gian Francesco Grimaldi and Giacomo della Porta; it was taken over by Carlo Maderno in 1608, who also designed the beautiful dome, resplendent with gold and frescoes, which give it a great appearance. The great dome is inferior in width and height only to that of St. Peter’s.  The large dome is inferior in size and height only to St. Peter’s. Don’t miss the remarkable series of frescoes by Domenichino.
Puccini set the beginning of Tosca there.
BASILICA SANT’ANDREA DELLA VALLE
Corso Vittorio Emmanuele II
www.santandrea.teatinos.org/
SANTA MARIA IN ARACOELI
It is undoubtedly one of Rome’s most beautiful and evocative churches. This is because the Church stands on the highest peak of Capitoline Hill and has its main entrance at the top of an imposing flight of 124 steps!  (but there is also a more accessible entrance from Piazza del Campidoglio).
There is a beautiful panorama of Rome from the top with Sant’Andrea della Valle and St Peter’s domes.
Erected on the ruins of the Temple of Juno Moneta in the 6th century. Its name originates from a legend according to which a sibyl predicted to Augustus the coming of the son of God, saying “Haec est ara Filii Dei”: hence the name Ara Coeli. The marble staircase was built in the 13th century, according to legend, as thanks for the end of the plague.
SANTA MARIA IN ARACOELI
Scala dell’Arce Capitolina, 12  (Campidoglio)
www.sanmarcoevangelista.it/
SAN GIROLAMO
Walk past Piazza Farnese into Via di Monserrato. The Church of San Girolamo della Carità was built, according to tradition, on the site of the house where the Saint lived in 382. In the 16th century, it was handed over to a charitable congregation and was linked to the memory of St. Philip Neri. The interior has a Latin cross plan, with only one central nave and a rich wooden coffered ceiling; not to be missed is the magnificent Spada chapel designed by Borromini, resplendent with polychrome marble. Near the high altar is the “Communion of St Jerome” by Carlo Rainaldi.
Ps “the attribution to Borromini, made for centuries by art historians, is to be excluded”.

SAN GIROLAMO della CARITA’
Via di Monserrato, 54-84,
www.chiesasangirolamo.org/

CHURCH OF ST IGNATIUS OF LOYOLA
The Church of St Ignatius of Loyola was built according to plans by Carlo Maderno.
The polychromy of the marble, the stucco work, the pictorial decoration, and the altars’ richness give it a luxurious appearance.
But most of all, the vault depicting the Glory of St Ignatius, a work by Andrea Pozzo and one of the most beautiful masterpieces of its time, is awe-inspiring. A play on perspective makes it seem as if the roof of the Church never ends.
Stand in the middle of the Church and walk down the nave; you can discover how the fresco transforms under your eyes. Simply thrilling
. And also, by Andrea Pozzo, the Church’s Fake Dome, like the vault, gives the illusion of seeing a dome that does not actually exist. Andrea Pozzo himself is the fake dome where the artist created the faux architecture with the perspective effect. Unfortunately, the original painting, completed in 1685, was destroyed by fire; in 1823, it was faithfully reproduced by Francesco Manno based on drawings and studies left by Pozzo. Also interested are the Monument to Pope Gregory XV, and the gigantic Statue of St Ignatius, by Camillo Rusconi of 1728, in the compartment to the left of the apse.
CHIESA DI SANT’IGNAZIO DI LOYOLA
Piazza Sant’Ignazio www.santignazio.gesuiti.it/
CHURCH OF SANT’IVO ALLA SAPIENZA
The church of Sant’Ivo alla Sapienza was built by Borromini from 1642 to 1660. It is located in Corso Rinascimento, a few steps from Piazza Navona, in the beautiful courtyard of the Palazzo della Sapienza.  The Church is decidedly surprising both on the outside for the originality of the dome that rises up towards the sky in a spiral movement, and inside a continuous play of full and empty spaces, large and small, the upward trend of light colours and ornaments that anticipate the Rococo style. Don’t miss the magnificent painting by Pietro da Cortona, depicting “Sant’Ivo”.
CHIESA DI SANT’IVO ALLA SAPIENZA
Corso Rinascimento 40 www.sivosapienza.eu
CHURCH OF SAN LUIGI DEI FRANCESI
It has been the national Church of the French in Rome since 1589. On the façade are Charlemagne, St Joan of Valois and St Clotide. In the Contarelli chapel, there are paintings by Caravaggio. The French National Church, founded by Cardinal Giulio dei Medici (later Clement VII) in 1518, and completed in 1589 by Giacomo della Porta and Domenico Fontana, is famous for the three paintings by Caravaggio dedicated to St Matthew and for the frescoes by Domenichino. The vast late Renaissance façade, probably attributed to Giacomo della Porta, is divided by pilasters into five bays, with three portals and two niches with statues by Lestache (1758). The interior has three naves with five chapels on each side and a rich central choir decorated with marble; the style of the entire Church is unquestionably Baroque.
CHIESA DI SAN LUIGI DEI FRANCESI
Piazza di S. Luigi de’ Francesi
www.eglisesfrancaisesarome.it
SANTA MARIA DELLA PACE
Just behind Piazza Navona, amidst tables, restaurants, and various people, you will find Santa Maria della Pace, an absolute must-see after visiting an exhibition in the adjacent rooms or after a pleasant break at the bar on the first floor under the arches of the cloister.
Santa Maria della Pace was founded on the site of the medieval chapel of Sant’Andrea de Acquaricariis. It was rebuilt in its present form by Pietro da Cortona, whose semicircular façade is his architectural masterpiece and one of the most outstanding achievements of Roman Baroque architecture.
Inside are masterpieces by Raphael, Maderno and Bramante’s Cloister, the artist’s first work executed in Rome.
SANTA MARIA DELLA PACE
Arco della Pace 5 (Piazza Navona)
www.chiostrodelbramante.it/
BASILICA OF SANTA MARIA DEL POPOLO
Santa Maria del Popolo is one of the most significant buildings of the Roman Renaissance, not only for its architectural style but also for the paintings and sculptures it houses. The church contains works by Bramante, Sansovino, Pinturicchio, Mino Da Fiesole, Raphael, Bernini and Caravaggio. Caravaggio’s works include The Conversion of St. Paul and The Conversion of St. Paul, made around 1601, which together with Annibale Carracci’s Assumption adorn the Cerasi Chapel. There are numerous tomb slabs on the floor, dating back to the Middle Ages and the Renaissance. The chapels abound in funerary monuments, including the Chigi Chapel, begun on a design by Raphael from 1513 and only finished between 1652 and 1656 with the intervention of Gianlorenzo Bernini. Designed by Raphael is the statue of Jonah emerging from the whale, while Habakkuk and the angel and Daniel in the lions’ den are the work of Bernini. The altarpiece is by Sebastiano del Piombo and Salviati. While the altarpiece depicting the Assumption of the Virgin is by Annibale Carracci.
BASILICA di SANTA MARIA DEL POPOLO
Piazza del Popolo 12 www.santamariadelpopolo.com
CHURCH OF SANTA MARIA SOPRA MINERVA
Founded in the 7th century over a temple dedicated to Minerva Chalcidice, it was rebuilt in Gothic style in the 12th century. On the square in front of the Church is an Egyptian obelisk, supported by an elephant by Bernini. The ancient obelisk was found in the Monastery of Santa Maria Sopra Minerva garden, and the monks wanted it erected in their square. Admire the facade of the Church, stunning in its simplicity. The interior is the only example of a Gothic architectural complex in Rome. Inside the Church is the Funeral Monument of Sister Maria Raggi, Bernini: Saint Catherine of Siena and the great Dominican painter Beato Angelico are buried in the Church.
CHIESA DI SANTA MARIA SOPRA MINERVA
Piazza della Minerva 42
  www.santamariasopraminerva.it

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COLOSSEUM AREA

BASILICA OF SANTA MARIA MAGGIORE
The Basilica of Santa Maria Maggiore is the most important Roman Church dedicated to the Virgin Mary, located on the Esquiline Hill not far from the Colosseum The Church was founded between 432 and 440 Sixtus III. However, legend has it that the Church was based by Pope Liberius on a miraculous snowfall that occurred on 5 August 356. The Basilica retained its Medieval appearance for a long time, but from the 16th century onwards, numerous interventions were carried out to give it its current appearance.
The architects involved in the various renovations were Carlo Rainaldi, Ferdinando Fuga, Beccafumi and Antonio Bazzi, Sodoma. In the Basilica you can admire works attributed to Cavallini, Cimabue or the young Giotto, Flaminio Ponzio, Passignano, Piero della Francesca, Domenico Fontana, Arnolfo di Cambio, the Cavalier d’Arpino and Guido Reni. 
Several members of the Borghese family are buried in the basement of the Cappella Paolina, including Napoleon’s sister Paolina Bonaparte. Gian Lorenzo Bernini is also buried in the Basilica.
The scenic Sforza Chapel, built by Tiberio Calcagni and Giacomo della Porta between 1564 and 1573 to a design by Michelangelo, is remarkable.
On the walls of the nave, above the entablature, are mosaic panels dating back to the 5th century.
BASILICA DI SANTA MARIA MAGGIORE
 P.za di Santa Maria Maggiore
www.vatican.va/various/basiliche/sm_maggiore/it

SANTA PRASSEDE
Not far from S. Maria Maggiore is Santa Prassede, built-in 822.  No imposing façade, just an insignificant side door. And inside beautiful mosaics. Splendid frescoes on the walls with “Stories of the Passion”, and figures of “Apostles” and an impressive Cosmatesque floor with a central disc of black stone covering a well, where, according to legend, St. Praxedes collected the remains and blood of the martyrs. And hidden behind the nave is the glittering chapel of St Zeno. The chapel of San Zeno is the most important Byzantine monument in Rome.
Basilica Santa Pudenziana al Viminale
It is one of the oldest churches in Rome, built on Senator Pudente, whose guest St Peter is said to have been, and where later (in the 2nd century), a bathhouse was built. Transformed into a basilica between the end of the 4th century and the 5th  was dedicated to Santa Pudenziana (probably sister of Santa Prassede). The Basilica has been restored several times, restorations that have altered its primitive character.
BASILICA DI SANTA PRASSEDE
Via di Santa Prassede 9/Via Urbana 160
www.santaprassede.wordpress.com/
 SAN PIETRO IN VINCOLI
The Basilica of San Pietro in Vincoli is located on the Colle Oppio next to the Colosseum.
It was built to house St Peter’s chains: according to legend, Pope Leo I brought them together to compare them, and the chains joined together inseparably. According to tradition, the two chains (bonds) St Peter was bound are still kept under the altar. The vaulted nave features a large fresco by Giovanni Battista Parodi. To the left of the entrance is the tomb of Antonio and Piero del Pollaiolo, with busts depicting the two Florentine artists surmounted by one of their frescoes. But most of all because it houses Michelangelo’s famous Moses. The statue was sculpted in 1513 to adorn the funeral monument of Julius II. The work, first abandoned, was finished after his death. The figure of the prophet, with the Tablets of the Law, is majestic.  The veins and muscles stand out as if the whole statue were throbbing under the impulse of wrath; the face expresses solemnity and fury.
SAN PIETRO IN VINCOLI
Piazza di San Pietro in Vincoli, 4/a,
www.lateranensi.org/sanpietroinvincoli/
FOUR CROWNED SAINTS
Initially built in the 4th century, the Church owes its name to the tradition of the martyrdom of four Roman soldiers who refused to worship the God Aesculapius and five sculptors from Pannonia. For this reason, the Church is the object of particular devotion among stonemasons and marble workers.
The buildings as a whole still retain the austere character they had in the Middle Ages, looking more like a small fortress, and you have to cross a few courtyards to reach it, but when you get to the cloister, here is the first gem, a true oasis of peace.  The 13th-century cloister is probably the most impressive that the marble workers ever left in Rome, and then beyond the courtyard is the Oratory of San Silvestro, with splendid 13th-century frescoes. To gain access to the Oratory and the Cloister, you have to make a symbolic donation to the cloistered nuns who look after this magnificent place.
SANTI QUATTRO CORONATI
Via dei SS. Quattro, 20,
www.monacheagostinianesantiquattrocoronati.it/
SANTO STEFANO ROTONDO
Santo Stefano Rotondo is one of the oldest circular churches in Italy, built in the 5th century. Don’t miss the interior of the small Church, which is absolutely unusual and perfect in its symmetry of concentric circles, with an evocative light filtering through the windows, bringing life to every detail. Then there are the frescoes by Pomarancio, Tempesta and others, impressive for depicting the atrocities inflicted on the Christian martyrs. One of the chapels contains a 7th-century Byzantine mosaic depicting two martyrs who were buried in the Church. Leaving the Church, you can relax at Villa Cellimoontana or continue your walk to the Baths of Caracalla.
SANTO STEFANO ROTONDO
Via Santo Stefano Rotondo, 7 www.cgu.it/it/santo-stefano-rotondo/
BASILICA OF SAN CLEMENTE
The Basilica of San Clemente is one of the oldest basilicas in Rome, built before 385 and dedicated to St Clement, the third pope after St Peter. It consists of two overlapping churches, built on top of Roman buildings from the Republican era and on the remains of a temple of the God Mithras. The interior of the Basilica still retains the typical appearance of an ancient Roman basilica and preserves a critical testimony. This is the fresco of the ‘Legend of Sisinno’, dated between 1084 and 1100, which narrates a miracle of St Clement.
The fresco depicts a scene in which three servants, harangued by their master, the patrician Sisinno. He wants to punish Clement for converting his wife Theodora to Christianity and dragging Clement into chains. In reality, the three, struck by momentary blindness, do not realise they are only carrying a heavy stone column while Clement is free.
The inlaid polychrome marble floor is an excellent example of the Cosmatesque style.
BASILICA SI SAN CLEMENTE
Via Labicana, 95, www.basilicasanclemente.com

SAINTS JOHN AND PAUL
The Basilica of Saints John and Paul owes its name to two Roman officers who were victims of the persecution of Emperor Julian the Apostate who, according to a legend, had them buried in their own house.  It is to the top of the Caelian Hill, overlooking an irregular square, made suggestive by historical testimonies, Rebuilt from the foundations in the 12th century with a high bell tower among the most beautiful in the city. The beautiful coffered ceiling was created in the 16th century, while a large fresco by Pomarancio can be admired in the centre of the apse. About halfway down the nave, a plaque commemorates the place where the saints were martyred. Via del Clivo di Scauro, which runs alongside the Basilica, gives access to the so-called Roman houses of the Caelian, at least five buildings dating from the first to the fourth century, which constitute one of the best-preserved residential complexes of the Roman era.
SANTI GIOVANNI E PAOLO
Piazza Dei SS. Giovanni e Paolo,
www.basilicassgiovanniepaolo.it

 

THE MOST BEAUTIFUL
CHURCHES APPIA ANTICA-CARACALLA-AVENTINO details

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APPIA ANTICA
BASILICA OF ST SEBASTIAN OUTSIDE THE WALLS
Near the Catacombs of St Sebastian, on the site where, according to tradition, the bodies of the apostle’s Peter and Paul were temporarily kept in times of persecution, stands the Basilica of St Sebastian. Thus, we are at the beginning of the Appia Antica. The Basilica dates back to the 4th century, although it was destroyed by the Saracens and then rebuilt. Its current appearance dates from the 17th century. From this place, mentioned in ancient sources as ad catacumbas (perhaps because of the presence of depressions or pits, kymbas in Greek), the term ‘catacomb’ would also derive by extension. In fact, the Basilica is still the centre of the largest and best-known area of early Christian cemeteries in Rome. The Church has a nave with rich decorations and a floor utterly paved with tombs, and the wooden ceiling by Vasanzio.  In the Chapel of the Relics (1625) are preserved the footprints believed to be of Christ’s feet at the moment of the “Domine quo vadis?”, one of the arrows that struck St. Sebastian and the column of the latter’s martyrdom. Gian Lorenzo Bernini’s last masterpiece is also kept here. The famous Salvator Mundi (Bust of the Saviour).
BASILICA DI SAN SEBASTIANO FUORI LE MURA
Via Appia Antica, 136
www.sansebastianofuorilemura.org

 

CARACALLA  
SAINTS NEREUS AND ACHILLEUS
Memories of this ancient church date back to 337. It was already known as “Titulus Fasciolae” (due to the legend that the Apostle Peter, escaping from the Mamertine Prison, dropped the bandage that bound the wound on his foot caused by the chains) Almost entirely rebuilt in the 15th century, it was restored and decorated with splendid frescoes by Cardinal Baronio in 1597. In front of the modest façade, a Roman granite column with a beautiful capital decorated with lion heads surmounted by a cross. Inside On the walls are frescoes by Pomarancio depicting ‘Stories of Martyrs’, of stark realism.
SAN NEREO E ACHILLEO
Viale delle Terme di Caracalla, 28 
www.nereoachilleo.it
AVENTINO
SAINT SABINA
Located on the Aventine Hill, adjacent to the Orange Garden, The Church of St Sabina is one of the oldest churches in Rome and the world. It was built in the 5th century on the tomb of St Sabina. It is one of the best-preserved early Christian churches in the world. To enter the interior of the Church, one has to cross the portico and reach the atrium; from there, it is possible to admire, through a peephole, the famous orange tree of San Domenico, the first one, according to tradition, brought to Rome in 1216 directly from Portugal by the Saint himself. Tradition has it that this one miraculously grew on the old one.
The interior of the Basilica is vast, solemn and luminous.  The style is Romanesque, and a particular value is a wooden door at the end of the nave. The nave houses, near the apse, the ‘Schola Cantorum, i.e. the enclosure created in the core to accommodate the choristers during religious services. From the Orange Garden, you can enjoy a splendid panoramic view of Rome.
SANTA SABINA
Piazza Pietro D’Illiria, 1
https://www.turismoroma.it/it/luoghi/basilica-di-santa-sabina-allaventino
SANTA PRISCA
This Church dedicated to St Prisca (martyred under Emperor Claudius) was built in the 4th or 5th century. Its present appearance is that of the restoration of 1660. On the apse of the Church are angels holding medallions and the high altarpiece. On the right is the baptismal font where, according to tradition, St Peter baptised St Prisca. There are also the remains of a 1st-century Roman house, probably the home of Aquila and Priscilla, the Saint’s parents, and a 2nd century Mithraeum. The crypt of the Church (9th – 10th century) houses the relics of St Prisca.
SANTA PRISCA
Via di Santa Prisca, 11 www.santaprisca.it
SAINT ALEXIS
The Church, built before the 10th century, preserves all the transformations made in its history by restorations, architectural works and enlargements, represented by the different styles that make it up. It has a beautiful Romanesque bell tower, a medieval porch, and a 16th-century cloister. According to legend, St. Alexis drank after returning from Syria after a 17-year flight to avoid marriage and not being recognised by his relatives relegated him to a basement. The wooden staircase under which St. Alexis is said to have lived can be seen against the inner façade in a large glass case. When he died, tradition records that all the bells in Rome rang in unison on their own.
BASILICA DI SAN BONIFACIO E SANT’ALESSIO
P.za di Sant’Alessio, 23, www.santalessiocrs.it
 BASILICA OF SANTA MARIA IN COSMEDIN     
The portico of the Basilica of Santa Maria in Cosmedin is the place where the Bocca della Verità (Mouth of Truth) is located, an almost obligatory destination for those who come to Rome and want to test their sincerity. Founded in the 7th century. The Church was intended in the 8th century for Byzantine monks. Because of its decorations, the building also took the name ‘Cosmedin’, which means ornament in Greek. The interior of the Church shows some striking 8th and 11th-century decorative elements, such as the women’s gallery and the ‘Schola Cantorum’. At the same time, the seven-storey bell tower, one of the most beautiful in the city in Romanesque style, is visible from the outside.
BASILICA DI SANTA MARIA IN COSMEDIN 
Piazza della Bocca della Verità, 18,
www.cosmedin.org

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TRASTEVERE
BASILICA OF SANTA MARIA IN TRASTEVERE
The Basilica was probably the first official place of Christian worship in Rome. According to legend, it was built by Pope Calixtus I in the 3rd century and finished by St Julius.  Decorations were later carried out, but the Church was not substantially altered.
Many parts of the church date back to the 12th century; the mosaics are essential, especially those on the façades and in the apse, created by Pietro Cavallini and depicting the “Life of the Virgin”.  The rich ceiling was designed by Domenichino (1617), and the beautiful painting of the Assumption is his.
BASILICA DI SANTA MARIA IN TRASTEVERE
Piazza Santa Maria in Trastevere
www.santamariaintrastevere.it
CHURCH OF SAN BENEDETTO IN PISCINULA
The Church of San Benedetto in Piscinula was probably the place where St Benedict stayed. The Church dates back to the 11th century. In the small atrium, there is a fresco of ‘San Benedetto’ dating back to the 13th century; passing through the Cosmatesque door, one comes to a small square enclosure (called the ‘cella di San Benedetto’), with four ancient columns at the corners, which support the vault. The interior consists of three small naves with four ancient columns on each side. Behind the high altar are 14th-century panels.
CHIESA DI SAN BENEDETTO IN PISCINULA
Piazza in Piscinula,
40, www.sanbenedettoinpiscinula.it/
 
BASILICA OF SANTA CECILIA IN TRASTEVERE
St Cecilia, the patron saint of music, was martyred here in 230 AD. The Church was founded before the 5th century on the site of a Roman house, probably that of Valerian, St Cecilia’s husband, and was rebuilt on the commission of Pope Paschal I. In the 12th century, a portico and bell tower were added. It was continuously restored from the 16th century until the 19th. The 18th-century façade is by Fuga, and the portico still has the ancient pink granite and African marble columns. Inside the adjacent convent, Pietro Cavallini’s 13th-century fresco “The Last Judgement” is not missed.
BASILICA DI SANTA CECILIA IN TRASTEVERE
Piazza di Santa Cecilia 22
www.benedettinesantacecilia.it/htm/Basilica.html
GIANICOLO
SAN PIETRO IN MONTORIO
The Church is located in one of the most beautiful places in the capital. On the slopes of one of its hills, the Janiculum, there is an awe-inspiring view of historic Rome. San Pietro in Montorio in itself is a unique historical, artistic and architectural monument. Its foundation in the Middle Ages is due to the traditional memory of the Crucifixion of the Apostle Peter right on the spot where Bramante’s Tempietto was built. This work crowns the entire complex, which today preserves all its charm and makes the ceremonies full of participation in a high cultural and spiritual environment. The interior of the Church has a single nave and a series of side chapels adorned by the skill of renowned artists such as Vasari and Bernini. The evocative Church of San Pietro in Montorio, so-called from “Mons Aureus”, is located in one of the most beautiful places in the capital, on the slopes of the Janiculum Hill, from where there is a magnificent view of historic Rome.
It was erected before the 9th century on the site where St Peter was traditionally believed to have been crucified. The elegant and straightforward Renaissance façade is traditionally attributed to Meo del Caprina but is considered by authoritative critics of the Bregno school. The interior of the Church has a single nave and a series of side chapels adorned by the skill of artists such as Vasari and Bernini. In the first chapel on the right is the ‘Flagellation’ by Sebastiano del Piombo in 1518 to a design by Michelangelo. In the courtyard is Bramante’s famous Tempietto, with a circular plan and sixteen Doric granite columns.
SAN PIETRO IN MONTORIO
Piazza di S. Pietro in Montorio, 2
www.sanpietroinmontorio.it

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TERMINI /QUIRINAL AREA
BASILICA OF ST MARY OF THE ANGELS AND MARTYRS
Santa Maria degli Angeli e dei Martiri is located in Piazza della Repubblica. The building is a 1562 adaptation of the frigidarium of the Baths of Diocletian by Michelangelo Buonarroti. Its original appearance was later changed by Luigi Vanvitelli in the 17th century.
The architectural complex is singularly impressive.
The unadorned façade is formed by the exedra of one of the rooms of the Baths.  The most famous work is Domenichino’s ‘Martyrdom of St Sebastian’. Michelangelo’s original design can be seen in the sacristy.  On the floor of the Church is a giant sundial, used for hundreds of years to determine the date of Easter as accurately as possible by observing the motions of the Sun and Moon.
BASILICA DI SANTA MARIA DEGLI ANGELI E DEI MARTIRI
Piazza della Repubblica
 www.santamariadegliangeliroma
CHURCH OF SAN CARLO ALLE QUATTRO FONTANE
The Church of San Carlo alle Quattro Fontane, nicknamed ‘San Carlino’ because of its small size, is one of Francesco Borromini’s most original works. It is ingeniously constructed with the exact dimensions as one of the pillars of St Peter’s dome. The Church is his last creation, left unfinished after his death in 1667. Already impressive from the outside with its curvilinear shape, you will be amazed by its interior and elliptical dome decorated with hexagons, octagons and crosses.

CHIESA DI SAN CARLO ALLE QUATTRO FONTANE
Via del Quirinale 23 www.turismoroma.it /chiesa-di-san-carlo-alle-quattro-fontane

CHURCH OF SANT’ANDREA AL QUIRINALE
The Church of Sant’ Andrea al Quirinale was built in the second half of the 17th century at the behest of Pope Alexander VII to a design by Gian Lorenzo Bernini and had a façade similar to the colonnade of St. Peter’s. It is a jewel of architectural, decorative and pictorial harmony. The decoration of the dome is by Antonio Raggi, the lacunar part by Pietro Sassi and the gilding by Vincenzo Corallo.
CHIESA DI SANT’ANDREA AL QUIRINALE
Via del Quirinale, 30, www.santandrea.gesuiti.it
SAINT BERNARD AT THE BATHS
Formerly one of the four circular towers that stood on either side of the remains of the Baths of Diocletian. In 1598, Countess Caterina Nobili Sforza had the idea of turning it into a church. The cylindrical Church has an octagonal coffered dome that receives light from a large central circular hole like a miniature Pantheon.
SAN BERNARDO ALLE TERME
 Piazza di S. Bernardo, 105,

CHURCH OF SANTA MARIA DELLA VITTORIA
You know it for the Ecstasy of Saint Theresa, and it is certainly included in your itinerary.
The first complete restoration of the Cornaro Chapel has just been completed, bringing it back to its original splendour, revealing many hidden details and introducing us to the technique of the great Baroque master Gianlorenzo Bernini.
While you’re in the area, pay a visit to the Church of Santa Susanna, Maderno’s masterpiece, the curious San Bernardino alle Terme and, of course, the Fountain of Moses.
The Church was built by Carlo Maderno for Cardinal Scipione Borghese between 1608 and 1620 and owed its new name to a small image of the Madonna found in the rubbish of Pilsen Castle. The harmonious façade, almost a repetition of Maderno’s Church of Santa Susanna, is by Gian Battista Sorìa.

CHIESA DI SANTA MARIA DELLA VITTORIA
Via Venti Settembre, 17 www.turismoroma.it/chiesa-di-santa-maria-della-vittoria

CHURCH OF SAN VITALE
The Church of San Vitale is located on Via Nazionale, below street level. It has practically retained its original 4th-century appearance as the city changed its appearance around it. Its five-arched portico with columns is original from the 5th century.
The interior, originally consisting of three naves, was reduced to one during restoration in 1475. The vast walls were frescoed in the 16th century by Cavalier d’Arpino, Andrea Pozzo and Gaspare Poussin.
CHIESA DI SAN VITALE
Via Nazionale, 194/B www.santivitale.com

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OTHER AREAS

BASILICA OF ST JOHN LATERAN
It is ‘the Cathedral of Rome’ and the oldest in all of Rome. In fact, it is called the ‘mother of all churches’ and is officially the most important Church in the Catholic world. Most of the popes were crowned here. It was founded by Emperor Constantine in the 4th century and modified by Francesco Borromini in the following centuries, who gave it a more baroque appearance. The present Church is based mainly on the plan of the original Basilica. However, the Basilica has been continuously enriched over the centuries. The mosaic in the apse is by Jacopo Torriti (1289-1291), and Boniface VIII built the Loggia delle Benedizioni (Loggia of Blessings) for the Jubilee of 1300.  Martin V had the interior frescoed by Gentile da Fabriano and Pisanello (1431-1432). Because of the Jubilee of 1650, Innocent X Pamphili entrusted Francesco Borromini with the reconstruction of the interior, of which he wanted to preserve the overall five-nave layout and the prosperous 16th-century coffered ceiling. Between 1732 and 1735, under the pontificate of Clement XII Corsini, the current façade was built to a design by Alessandro Galilei. In addition to the splendid 17th century layout designed by Borromini, the interior features works by Alessandro Algardi, Simone Ghini, Cavalier d’Arpino, Cesare Nebbia, Orazio Gentileschi and Giovanni Baglione.

BASILICA DI SAN GIOVANNI IN LATERANO
Piazza di S. Giovanni in Laterano, 4,
 www.vatican.va/sangiovanni/basilica
BASILICA OF THE HOLY CROSS IN JERUSALEM
The Basilica, also known as the Eleniana or Sessoriana, stands on the area previously occupied by the Sessorium, a residential complex owned by the emperor. The palace would later become the residence of Helena, Constantine’s mother. Constantine had the Basilica built around the middle of the 4th century to house the relics of the Holy Cross, brought to Rome by Helena after a trip to Palestine.
The original Basilica was later renovated and enlarged. The artists who contributed to this work included Melozzo da Forlì and Antoniazzo Romano. A staircase to the right of the ciborium leads down to the Chapel of St. Helena, where the vault contains a magnificent mosaic, a remake of an original dating back to the time of Valentinian III. You can enter the Chapel of Relics (1930) from the presbytery, where fragments of the Holy Cross and other relics are kept. The remarkable Sessorian Library Hall in the adjoining monastery with a vault frescoed by Giovanni Paolo Pannini (1724-1727).
The iron and glass door of the kitchen garden of Santa Croce in Gerusalemme, by Jannis Kounellis, was inaugurated on 28 November 2007. Unfortunately, therefore, the kitchen garden cannot be visited.
BASILICA DI SANTA CROCE IN GERUSALEMME
Piazza di S. Croce in Gerusalemme  www.santacroce.it
BASILICA OF ST PAUL OUTSIDE THE WALLS
Second in size only to St. Peter’s, it houses the relics of the Saint.
The Basilica was founded in the 4th century and remained practically intact until the fire of 1823, which caused its complete destruction. The current appearance is due to the architects Pasquale Belli and Giuseppe Valadier and reflects the dimensions and plan of the ancient Basilica. The cloisters contain numerous architectural fragments from the ancient
BASILICA DI SAN PAOLO FUORI LE MURA
Piazzale San Paolo, 1  www.basilicasanpaolo.org
BASILICA OF SAN LORENZO OUTSIDE THE WALLS
The Basilica of St Lorenzo Outside the Walls is the fusion of two separate churches, one of the 6th century and the other of the 13th century, around the tomb of Lorenzo. The Church also houses the relics of St Stephen and has been one of the most revered in Rome since time immemorial. The three-nave interior shows the uneven appearance of the Church, with the two basilicas adjacent but not perfectly aligned. The twenty-two columns dividing the naves, different in size and marble, may have come from the basilica maior Floor. Ambos and Easter candelabra are Cosmatesque. The ciborium is the centre of the Cosmatesque floor, the oldest work signed by Roman marble workers (1148).
BASILICA DI SAN LORENZO FUORI LE MURA
Piazzale del Verano, 3,
www.basilicadisanlorenzo.com

HISTORICAL PALACES

Many of the city’s historical palaces are institutional seats or seats of important museums such as Palazzo Barberini, Palazzo Corsini, Palazzo Altemps, Palazzo Massimo alle Terme, Palazzo Venezia, seats of important Embassies, Associations or Academies. But many of them are still private property and belong to their families of origin. Some of these palaces can be visited on certain days and at certain times. Certainly, the most important Palace is the Quirinale Palace, not only because it is the Residence of the Republic, but also and above all for all its charm and splendour.
Museum buildings or those hosting exhibitions are ordinarily open to the public.
Others can only be visited on special occasions or for special events.

 

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Palazzo Altemps: Piazza di Sant’Apollinare, 46  (Piazza Navona)
Palazzo Massimo Alle Terme Largo di Villa Peretti, 2 (Termini Station)
Palazzo Braschi Larco San Pantaleo 10 (Piazza Navona)
Palazzo Chigi Piazza Colonna 370
Palazzo Madama  Piazza Madama  (Corso Rinascimento)
Palazzo Montecitorio Piazza di Monte Citorio
Palazzo Barberini Via delle Quattro Fontane, 13
Palazzo Corsini Via della Lungara 10
Palazzo Venezia Piazza di S. Marco, 49 /Via del Plebiscito (Piazza Venezia)
Palazzo Senatorio Piazza del Campidoglio
Palazzo di Giustizia Piazza Cavour
Palazzo della Civiltà Italiana Quadrato della Concordia, 3, (EUR)
Galleria Borghese Piazzale Scipione Borghese, 5,  (Villa Borghese)
Palazzo Giustiniani Via della Dogana Vecchia, 29 (Pantheon)
Palazzo Poli Piazza di Trevi,  (Fontana di Tevi)
Palazzo della Consulta Piazza del Quirinale 41
Palazzo Koch Via Nazionale 91 (Banca d’Italia)
Palazzo dei Conservatori Piazza del Campidoglio, 4, 
Palazzo Caffarelli Piazzale Caffarelli 4 (Campidoglio Musei Capitolini)
Palazzo Barberini in Via dei Giubbonari
Palazzo delle Esposizioni Via Nazionale 194
Palazzo Santacroce Aldobrandini o del Monte di Pietà Piazza del Monte di Pietà
Palazzo Borromeo Viale delle Belle Arti 2
Palazzo Patrizi Clementi Via Cavalletti, 2
Palazzo Besso Largo di Torre Argentina, 11,
Palazzo Spada Piazza Capo di Ferro 13
Palazzo Cipolla Via del Corso, 320,
Palazzo Ruspoli Via della Fontanella di Borghese, 56
Palazzo Brancaccio Viale del Monte Oppio, 7
Palazzo Merulana Via Merulana, 121

QUIRINAL PALACE

the seat of the Presidency of the Republic

 

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The Quirinale Palace is located on top of the Quirinale Hill, the highest of the seven hills. The Palace has been the seat of the Presidency of the Republic since 1946. Before, it has been first the summer residence of the popes and then the residence of the kings of Italy. With a surface area of 110,500 square metres, it is the sixth-largest Palace globally, 20 times larger than the White House. Designed by Domenico Fontana, Carlo Maderno and Gian Lorenzo Bernini, it has many masterpieces from every eraThe gardens, which extend for about 4 hectares, are extraordinary.
On the Piazza del Quirinale, which is also overlooked by the Palazzo della Consulta, built-in 1732 by Ferdinando Fuga, and the Scuderie del Quirinale, now a venue for unmissable exhibitions, are the colossal statues of the Dioscuri, Castor and Pollux from the Temple of Serapis built by Caracalla in 217 AD.

Visits are organised for a maximum of 10 people, with access every thirty minutes. Tickets are nominative and subject to a date and time. If you are late for your visit, you will no longer be able to enter the Palace. The date and time of the visit cannot be changed, and the ticket is non-refundable.
Visits must be booked at least 5 days in advance.

https://palazzo.quirinale.it/visitapalazzo/prenota.html
Online Booking   
https://visite.quirinale.it/QTicket/#/VQUI/it
Call centre, tel. 06 39.96.75.57 
Monday to Sunday from 10:00 am to 3:00 pm.      

COLONNA
Palace

DORIA-PAMPHILI
Palace

 

PATRIZI MONTORO
Palace

 

 

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Colonna Palace

This majestic historical residence, just a few steps from Piazza Venezia, belongs to The Colonna family, who have lived here for more than eight centuries. The Palace is a magnificent and extraordinary juxtaposition of architectural styles, each representing its historical period. It is the result of more than 500 years of work that began in the 14th century. Initially, Palazzo Colonna was a real fortress. Oddone Colonna, who became Pope in 1417 under the name of Martin V, made it the Papal Seat. During the 1600s, the Palace was entirely transformed by the most famous architects and artists, such as Gian Lorenzo Bernini, Antonio del Grande, Carlo Fontana and Paolo Schor. From an austere fortress, it became a splendid baroque palace with the extraordinary Galleria Colonna and the prestigious flats, among which the one of Princess Isabelle still stands out. The Galleria Colonna, more than 70 metres long, is a real gem and houses priceless art collections, including masterpieces by Pinturicchio, Cosmè Tura, Carracci, Guido Reni, Tintoretto, Salvator Rosa, Bronzino, Guercino, Veronese and Vanvitelli. From the Gallery, you can admire the beautiful private garden of the Palace, which stands on the ruins of the Temple of Serapis.
A visit is highly
recommendedVisit timetableEvery
Saturday of the year from 9.15am to 1.15pm
Or by prior arrangement.
ADDRESS  Piazza dei Santi Apostoli, 53-66/ Via della Pilotta, 17

CONTACTS 
info@galleriacolonna.it  www.galleriacolonna.it  06 6784350

Doria Pamphilj Palace

The Doria Pamphilj palace in Via del Corso is one of the few in Rome still the home of its first owners. As a result, the Doria Pamphilj Gallery contains an extraordinary wealth of furniture and works of art. The Palace was bought in 1601 by Cardinal Pietro Aldobrandini, nephew of Clement VIII, and further enlarged. Finally, in 1647 Olimpia Aldobrandini brought it as a dowry to Camillo Pamphilj, nephew of Innocent X, to whom we owe the establishment of the splendid Gallery. Their paintings are still arranged according to the layout designed in the late 18th century. The side on Via del Corso, a masterpiece by Valvassori, is one of Rome’s most innovative and original architectures of the early eighteenth century. The portal gives access to the beautiful quadrangular courtyard. Inside the Doria Pamphilj Gallery, you can admire, among many other masterpieces, works by Velàzquez, Caravaggio and Bernini.

ADDRESS  Via del Corso, 305

TIMETABLE
The Gallery is open daily from 10 am to 7 pm (the last entrance at 5.30 pm).
On Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays, opening hours are extended until 8 pm (last entry at 6.30 pm).
Closed on: third Wednesday of the month, 1 January, Easter and 25 December.

Admission€ 14.00

Palazzo Patrizi Montoro

The Palazzo Patrizi Montoro with the Pinacoteca del Tesoriere, one of Rome’s most beautiful historical residences, is one of the very few private patrician residences open to the public. It is located opposite the Church of San Luigi del Francesi. Inside the Pinacoteca del Tesoriere, you can admire over 800 works of Italian art, frescoes and statues dating back to the 3rd century B.C.
The private rooms extend over 900 square metres. Palazzo Patrizi Montoro is one of the very few Roman palaces that also has a consecrated chapel.

ADDRESS  Piazza di San Luigi de’ Francesi, 37

TIMETABLE  Private property.
Visits by appointment only: https://www.palazzopatrizi.it/aperture-straordinarie/

CONTACTS
Website: www.palazzopatrizi.it

 Telephone:  06 6869737

Borghese Palace

Pamphilj Palace

Palazzo Mattei

Palazzo Massimo alle Colonne

Rospigliosi Pallavicini Palace

Bonaparte Palace

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BORGHESE PALACE
Its solemnity and grandiose proportions make it one of the most magnificent palaces in the city. Due to its particular architectural form, it is also called the Cembalo. It was begun in 1560 to a design by Vignola and completed by Flaminio Ponzio and Carlo Maderno in 1614. There is a portico with two rows of columns in the large courtyard and the extraordinary “Bath of Venus” at the back, a charming nymphaeum with statues, creepers, and fountains. For a long time, the ground floor housed the collection of paintings that were transferred to the Villa Borghese in 1891.
 ADDRESS  Largo della Fontanella di Borghese, 22
 
PAMPHILIJ PALACE
Palazzo Pamphilj, Commissioned by Giovanni Battista Pamphilj (Pope Innocent X), was built according to a design by Girolamo Rinaldi, uniting in a single building several properties overlooking Via di Pasquino and Piazza Navona. In the 18th century, the Pamphilj family became the Doria Pamphilj family, and after various transformations, in 1920, the Palace passed to the Brazilian State, which made it its Embassy.
The grandiose palace has rooms frescoed by great 17th century artists such as Pietro da Cortona, Agostino Tassi, Giacinto Brandi and others. The Salone Palestrina is magnificent, as is the Gallery designed by Borromini and decorated by Pietro da Cortona with scenes from the life of Aeneas.
Address Piazza Navona, 14
Timetable
Free guided tours at 3.30 pm on Tuesdays in Italian and on Thursdays in Portuguese
Reservation
required on the website:
http://roma.itamaraty.gov.br/it/prenotazione_visita_guidata.xml
Email: cultural.roma@itamaraty.gov.br Telephone: 06 683981

 

 MATTEI PALACE
Palazzo Mattei, in Via Michelangelo Caetani, was designed between 1598 and 1617 by Carlo Maderno. The building of three floors and two courtyards is a true marvel.
The walls are fully covered with ancient fragments, epigraphs, sarcophagi, inscriptions and all framed with stuccoes that, together with the statues and marbles that represent the true wealth and beauty of the Palace.
On the top floor of the Palace is the studiolo where Giacomo Leopardi resided during his stay in Rome.
Address  Via Michelangelo Caetani, 32
 
PALAZZO MASSIMO alle COLONNE
The Palace stands on Corso Vittorio Emanuele II, just a few metres from the flat. It is the masterpiece of the architect Baldassarre Peruzzi, who built it on the 15th-century houses of the Massimo family, destroyed in the sack of Rome in 1527. The convex façade of the building recalls the shape of the cavea of Domitian’s Odeon. The portico composed of six columns paired in the centre creates a great light and shade and is decorated in the coffered ceiling with refined stucco work. The portico gives access to the various courtyards of the Palace and the exquisite interiors, enriched by splendid frescoes, classical statues, fine furniture and tapestries. On the second floor is the chapel where St. Philip Neri performed a miracle on 16 March 1583, bringing Fabrizio Massimo’s son Paolo back to life. The day of the miracle is the only one on which the building remains open to the public.
 Address Corso Vittorio Emanuele II, 141
Timetable
Closed to the public; open only on 16 March, from 7am to 1pm when the first courtyard and the chapel of San Filippo Neri can be seen. 
Rospigliosi Pallavicini Palace and Gallery
Built-in 1605 for Cardinal Scipione Borghese on the ruins of the ancient Baths of Constantine, it was designed by Flaminio Ponzio and embellished by Giovanni Vasanzio. The Palace was belonged to many families the Altemps, Bentivoglio, Lante, Cardinal Mazzarino, Mancini until to the Rospigliosi Pallavicini.
Rospigliosi Pallavicini enlarged it and enriched it with remarkable pictorial decorations, including those by Orazio Gentileschi, Paolo Brill and Antonio Tempesti, who frescoed the “Triumph of Love and Fame”.
The Palace houses the Pallavicini Gallery with works by Botticelli, Caravaggio and Titian, among others.
Inside the garden is the famous Casino dell’Aurora with a ceiling fresco by Guido Reni.
Address  Via 24 Maggio, 43
Timetable

Visit with a special authorisation by the Pallavicini administration.
Contacts06 47848064 – 06 4682297 / 376
 
BONAPARTE PALACE
The sumptuous Palace was designed between 1657 and 1677 by the architect Giovanni Antonio De Rossi for the Marquises d’Aste. The building was sold in 1818 for 27,000 gold piastres to Maria Letizia Ramolino Bonaparte, known as “Madame Mère”, as she was the mother of the famous Napoleon. From then on, the Palace, where the noblewoman spent the last years of her life, took its name, becoming Palazzo Bonaparte. The elegant atrium leads to the marvellous piano nobile, where you are greeted by a plaster reproduction of Mars the Peacemaker by Antonio Canova, and a series of rooms and halls richly decorated with eighteenth-century stuccoes and frescoes. The
Palazzo is also distinguished by its characteristic little green balcony – from where Letizia Bonaparte observed the comings and goings of the carriages in the streets below.
Today, it belongs to the Generali Group and is a space dedicated to art and culture.
Address Piazza Venezia, 5
Website:http://palazzobonaparte.it/index.html

THE BUILGINGS
OF
VIA GIULIA

 

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Sacchetti Palace

This is the most imposing Palace in Via Giulia, designed and built by Antonio da Sangallo the Younger (1483-1546), whose residence it was, as indicated by the inscription next to the balcony ‘Domus Antonii Sangalli Architecti – MDXLIII’. On Sangallo’s death the palace was sold to the Ricci di Montepulciano, who had it restored and enlarged by Nanni di Baccio Bigio. In 1648 it was sold to Marquis Sacchetti.

From the courtyard, the staircase leads to the upper flats, including the Salone dei Mappamondi with two large antique maps (terrestrial and celestial) from the end of the 17th century, the work of the cosmographer Vincenzo Coronelli.

The Audience Hall is painted the Stories of David by Francesco Salviati from 1553-1554 and in the Gallery the Holy Family and Adam and Eve by Pietro da Cortona.

The small Italian garden with hedges, fountain, statues, benches and the beautiful nymphaeum is remarkable.

ADDRESS Via Giulia, 66 TEL: +39 06 68308950

Palazzo Sacchetti is currently being auctioned by Sotheby’s

 

Falconieri Palace

The Palace was built in 1576 by the Odescalchi family and bought in 1606 by Mario Farnese.  In 1638 it was sold to the Falconieri, a rich and influential Florentine family. Between 1646 and 1649, Borromini, commissioned by Orazio Falconieri, enlarged the Palace by altering the façade and inserting two Baroque herms with falcon heads and busts representing the symbol of the Falconieri family and the beauty of Falconieri women. Purchased by the Hungarian Vilmos Frankoi, founder of the Historical-Geographical Institute, it was handed over to the Hungarian government in 1927 and has been home to the Hungarian Academy since 1928.

ADDRESS  Via Giulia, 1

TIMETABLE

For visits, consult the official website of the Hungarian Academy.

Email:  mission.rma@mfa.gov.hu 

Website: https://culture.hu/it/roma Telephone: 06 68896700

Ricci Palace

Built at the beginning of the 16th century for the noble Calcagni family, it was passed to the Del Bene family. We owe the painted facade on the side of Piazza Ricci, executed by Polidoro da Caravaggio. After having had several owners, it was purchased in 1577 by Cardinal Giulio Ricci. Below the windows on the first floor is a frieze with figures of prisoners, trophies and historical scenes dedicated to the greatness of ancient Rome. In the courtyard, there are some ancient fragments and a fountain. Monsignor Della Casa lived in the Palace around 1555 and wrote his famous ‘Galateo’ here.
One façade on Via Giulia and the other on Piazza Ricci is the only example of a curved façade in Rome.

ADDRESS  Via Giulia, 146 Piazza De’ Ricci

Medici Clarelli Palace

The Palace was built by Antonio da Sangallo the Younger (1483-1546) and his collaborator Dosio around 1535 as his private residence. On Sangallo’s death the building was sold to the Florentine Migliore Cresci. A richly painted decoration covered the entire façade. The only remaining evidence of the glorification of the Medici family is the inscription dedicated to Cosimo I, Duke of Florence, above the main door.

ADDRESS  Via Giulia, 79

TIMETABLE  Mon-Fri 9am-6pm Closed Saturday and Sunday

THE PALACES
BETWEEN
CAMPO DI FIORI
AND
SAN PIETRO

 

 

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PALAZZO GALLO Of ROCCAGIOVINE

On the opposite side of Palazzo Farnese, an elegant building that further enriches the square, is Palazzo del Gallo di Roccagiovine. Begun by Baldassarre Peruzzi in 1520 was completed in 1720 by the architect Alessandro Specchi, who designed the magnificent staircase. The double-flight staircase, supported by columns and pillars, winds up three floors, breaking with the previous rules, which tended to place the grand staircase inside the Palace, not in full view. Specchi, on the other hand, makes it an aesthetic function with the precise scenographic intention of contrasting it with the façade of Palazzo Farnese, a contrast between the lightness and the mass of the two different constructions placed opposite each other.
Piazza Farnese

CANCELLERIA Palace

Situated between Campo de’ Fiori and Corso Vittorio Emanuele II, the imposing Palazzo della Cancelleria was built at the behest of Raffaele Riario, who turned it into an elegant Renaissance residence.  The building was constructed with travertine from several Roman buildings, including the nearby Theatre of Pompey. The balcony on the façade is the work of Andrea Bregno, while the large doorway is the work of Domenico Fontana, and the elegant courtyard is attributed to Bramante. On the main floor of the Palace, there are halls, salons and sumptuously decorated rooms, such as the great Sala Regia, the Salone d’Onore, frescoed by Giorgio Vasari, known as the Salone dei Cento Giorni because it was completed in just 100 days. The Cardinal’s Apartment, which houses the Chapel of the Pallium, is embellished with stuccoes and paintings by Francesco Salviati. The Study Hall has a vault frescoed by Perin del Vaga. In the basement of the Palace is the Roman tomb of Consul Aulius Hirtius. Unfortunately, the tomb is completely submerged in the water of a pond formed by the obstruction of the Euripus.

 ADDRESS Piazza della Cancelleria, 1

TIMETABLE
The Palace is private, the property of the Holy See. Therefore, the Palace can only be visited when there are no events taking place.

CONTACTS: economato@apsa.va (booking a visit)

 Telephone: 06 69887566

 

Philippine Palace (Philippine Convent and Oratory)

The Palazzo dei Filippini complex consists of the Convent and the Oratory, and occupies a vast block between Piazza della Chiesa Nuova, Via dei Filippini, Piazza dell’Orologio, Via del Governo Vecchio and Via della Chiesa Nuova. The project was designed by Borromini. The Oratory is one of the masterpieces of Baroque art. The façade, made entirely of brick, is inspired by the human body with open arms to embrace the faithful.  The interior of the Oratory, now Borromini Hall, is punctuated by pillars with Ionic capitals.  On the upper floor of the complex is the magnificent Vallicelliana Library. In the adjacent Church of Santa Maria in Vallicella, known as the Chiesa Nuova, there is a work by Pieter Paul Rubens, the only one by the artist in Rome, “Madonna con Gesù Bambino e due Angeli” also known as Madonna della Vallicella.

ADDRESS Piazza della Chiesa Nuova, 18

Visit the Borromini Hall:
Visits by appointment only
CONTACTS: b-vall.didattica@beniculturali.it –

b-vall.servizi@beniculturali.it

Indicating the preferred days of the visit, usually in the morning.

The church can be visited freely

Orsini Taverna Palace

The Palace consists of a group of buildings occupying an artificial hillock. The mighty Roman Orsini family settled there in 1328, giving the hillock its name Mons Ursinorum. (today ‘Monte Giordano’).

The ‘mountain’ is also mentioned by Dante in Canto XVIII of the Inferno. From a fortress bristling with towers, the building soon became a complex of noble buildings divided among the various branches of the Orsini family. In 1549 the Palace was inhabited by Cardinal Ippolito d’Este, who used it as a place for social and cultural meetings, hosting Torquato Tasso and many other illustrious personalities who frequented and lived there including Empress Eugenia, wife of Napoleon III. The last change of ownership took place at the end of the 19th century in favour of the Counts Taverna of Milan, who are still the owners today.

From the sizeable vaulted entrance, you can see the central courtyard of the Palace with its beautiful fountain by Antonio Casoni. In addition to the five main units, a massive 19th-century tower in medieval style stands out.

ADDRESS Via di Monte Giordano, 36

 

Gaddi Palace

In 1528, the Florentine banker Luigi Taddeo Gaddi bought a modest house in Via del Banco di Santo Spirito from the Strozzi family, on the site of which he immediately built the family palace, using the work of Sansovino. Michelangelo certainly lived in the Palace for some years. The Palace retains its original 16th-century form, with the entrance surmounted by a majestic balcony.

ADDRESS Via del Banco di Santo Spirito, 42

 

Commendatore’s Palace

The building was erected between 1566 and 1572, designed by architect Giovanni Lippi, known as Nanni di Baccio Bigio. Inside there is an elegant arcaded courtyard, with a 17th-century fountain and a curious six-hour clock, whose dial has a single hand in the shape of a lizard and is framed by a snake biting its tail, a symbol of eternity. There is an extraordinarily elegant loggia on the main floor and the magnificent Salone del Commendatore, decorated with superb frescoes illustrating the history of the foundation of the ancient Ospedale Santo Spirito. The Palace houses the Museo Storico dell’Arte Sanitaria, together with the old Spezieria, where medicinal herbs were processed – of which ancient jars and mortars are still preserved.

ADDRESS Borgo Santo Spirito, 3

TIMETABLE
Only the courtyard can be visited. And the museum

Palace of  PENITENZIERI
(Palazzo della Rovere)

Also known as Palazzo della Rovere, it was built between 1480 and 1490 by Cardinal Domenico della Rovere. It is the Florentine architect Baccio Pontelli’s work who used Palazzo Venezia as a model. Inside there is a spacious courtyard surrounded by pillars. The halls of the main floor are decorated with precious frescoes by Pinturicchio. The Palace is now the seat of the Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulchre of Jerusalem.

ADDRESS Via della Conciliazione, 33

Visits, only for groups of at least 20 people from
Monday to Friday from 2.30 pm to 5 pm to be
booked on 06 69892930
Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulchre of Jerusalem

Single ticket: 5.00

Cesi-Armellini Palace

Just a few steps from St Peter’s Basilica and overlooking Via della Conciliazione, the Palace was built in the early 16th century on the site of the house of the Roman philosopher Seneca on the ancient Via Cornelia. In 1527, the Palace was invaded and sacked by the Landsknechts. It is said that the Landsknechts took advantage of a window left open in the Palace to enter and devastate Rome. In 1565  the Palace was bought by Angelo and Pier Donato Cesi, who, with the help of Martino Longhi, the Elder, transformed it into a sumptuous Renaissance residence. 

From the cloister-like inner courtyard, which still retains traces of the ancient paving of Via Cornelia, you can access the main floor and the Gallery, and the charming Library, with a magnificent 16th-century, painted wooden ceiling and richly frescoed walls. Among the jewels of the Palace is the terrace with one of the most beautiful views of St. Peter’s Basilica and the city.

ADDRESS Via della Conciliazione, 51

CONTACTS:info@fondazionesofia.org

 http://fondazionesofia.org/casa-madre

 Telephone: 06 68629202

and more
Palazzo Valentini
Palazzo Canova
Palazzo Propaganda Fide
Palazzo Carpegna
Palazzo Zuccari…

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VALENTINI Palace

The Palace, built-in 1583-1585 by Cardinal Bonelli, to a design by Domenico Paganelli on the site of the Trajan Forum.  It is currently the headquarters of the Metropolitan City of Rome.
In the early eighteenth century, the Palace was rented out to Marquis Francesco Maria Ruspoli. For many years, he turned it into one of the most splendid theatres and hosted musicians such as G.F. Haendel, Alessandro Scarlatti and Arcangelo Corelli.

In 1827 the building was bought by the banker Vincenzo Valentini. The Palace’s extensive artistic heritage includes Ugo Attardi’s statue of Ulysses, paintings and antiquities that belonged to the banker Valentini, and more recent works, such as the statues of Aeneas and Anchises and Europa by Sandro Chia.  But Palazzo Valentini has other essential and surprising wonders: the Domus Romane. Unexpectedly unearthed in 2005 during excavation works.
The tremendous
archaeological site consisting of two patrician residences dating back to the 4th century A.D., equipped with a private bathing area, and belonging to influential families of the time
. A fascinating underground journey through the Rome of the imperial age, a true nerve centre of the cultural and political life of the city.

 Address: Forum Trajan, 85

Timetable
Friday from 2 pm to 8 pm. Last admission 7 pm.
Saturday and Sunday from 10am to 4pm. Last admission 3 pm.

Reservation is required within the day before the visit. Roma Pass
Telephone purchase: 06 87165343

www.palazzovalentini.it/domus-romane/

Palazzo Valentini Via IV NOVEMBRE 119a

 

Cenci Palace

The Palace belonged to the family of Beatrice Cenci. Beatrice was accused, together with her brothers and stepmother, of witchcraft and the murder of their father. Condemned to death, she was beheaded at Ponte Sant’Angelo in 1599. A medieval arch connects the Palace to the Palazzetto Cenci designed by Martino Longhi, the Elder.

ADDRESS

Monte de’ Cenci, 17-20-21

The building is closed to the public and can only be seen from the outside.

 

ZUCCARI Palace

Located between Via Sistina and Via Gregoriana, Palazzo Zuccari reflects its creator’s talent and creative flair, the painter Federico Zuccari. They designed it as his home and studio in the last decade of the 16th century on the remains of the ancient gardens of Lucullus. In 1702 it was rented out to the Queen of Poland, Maria Casimira, who modified the main façade, commissioning the architect Filippo Juvarra to build a six-column portico in Rococo style. The Palace became a cultural centre and continued to be a home for artists for a long time: Winckelmann, Jacques-Louis David and Sir Joshua Reynolds lived there. Finally, in 1904, Henriette Hertz purchased Palazzo Zuccari, to whom we owe the extremely rich Hertziana Library, one of the world’s leading centres for the study of Italian art.
Address: Via Gregoriana, 30

Timetable
Monday to Friday from 9.30 to 13.00 and from 14.00 to 20.00

info@biblhertz.it

 www.biblhertz.it/it/home/

 Telephone: 0039 06 69993201

 

CANOVA Palace

In 1779 the sculptor Antonio Canova moved to Rome where he bought this small Palace near Piazza del Popolo to make his studio. It was an actual old-fashioned workshop, where Canova worked together with numerous collaborators. The simple building is decorated with numerous fragments of statues, sculptures, architraves and other archaeological finds also housed inside. Canova sculpted some of his most famous works in this studio; Amore e Psiche, Le Tre Grazie, Paolina Borghese, and the Maddalena Penitente received great enthusiasm Paris Salon in 1808.

The building is currently owned by the Vitale-Giuliani families and houses the Canova Tadolini Museum – and a pleasant cafeteria.

Address Via delle Colonnette, 26

Palace of the Congregation of Propaganda Fide

The core of the building dates back to 1586, and since 1633 it has been the seat of the Jesuit Congregation ‘De Propaganda Fide’. Between 1642 and 1644, Bernini designed the façade of the building facing the square. While the façade on Via di Propaganda, a masterpiece of Baroque architecture, is the work of Borromini, as is the Oratory of the Three Kings inside the building.

Address Via di Propaganda, 1

Timetable
Entrance temporarily closed for urgent restoration work

Website:

www.museopropagandafide.va

Florence Palace

Built for Jacopo Cardelli in 1516-30, it became the property of the Medici family of Florence in 1561 (hence the name.
Palazzo Firenze has some rooms decorated by Prospero Fontana between 1553 and 1555. Of particular note are the frescoes in the Loggia on the ground floor, traditionally known as the Primaticcio.
The Camerino dei Continenti on the ground floor takes its name from the central panel depicting three of the four parts of the world.  Today, magnificent carved ceilings in the Loggia on the piano nobile are called the Sala del Granduca. Jacopo Zucchi decorated the ceilings of the Sala delle Stagioni and the Sala degli Elementi.

Address Piazza di Firenze, 27

Timetable
Guided tours, with compulsory reservation, on Wednesdays from 11 am to 1 pm. Please contact
The Dante Alighieri Society.
Telephone: 06 6873694 – 06 6873695

Website: https://ladante.it/

 

CARPEGNA Palace

Built for the Vaini family of Imola in the early seventeenth century and then passed to the Carpegna family, the building owes its fame to the intervention of Francesco Borromini. He transformed the original building into the present one between 1643 and 1650. Unfortunately, Borromini’s work remains the portico on the ground floor and the helicoidal ramp connecting the first and second floors.

The palace is now the seat of the Accademia di San Luca,

Address
Piazza dell’Accademia di San Luca, 77

PHONE: +39 06 6798850 | 06 6798848

OPENING TIMES: Mon – Sat 10 a.m. – 7 p.m.

VISIT DURATION: about 1 hour

VILLA FARNESINA
CASINO dell’AURORA
VILLA dei QUINTILI
VILLA MEDICI
VILLA PONIATOWSKY
CASINO BONCOMPAGNI
VILLA ALBANI
VILLA LANTE

 

 

continua

VILLA FARNESINA

In the heart of Trastevere, Villa della Farnesina at the Lungara is one of the noblest and most magnificent examples of the Italian Renaissance. It was built as the residence of the wealthy Sienese banker Agostino Chigi, designed by Baldassarre Peruzzi, between 1505 and 1520. The residence was richly decorated by the greatest artists of the time, Sebastiano del Piombo, Sodoma and Raphael Sanzio. They created the Loggia of Cupid and Psyche and the fresco of the nymph Galatea.  The Villa was bought by Cardinal Alessandro Farnese the Younger, hence the name Farnesina, to distinguish it from Palazzo Farnese on the other side of the river; according to a project by Michelangelo, a bridge across the Tiber was to link the two Farnese properties. In 1927, Villa Farnesina was purchased by the Italian State as the seat of the Accademia d’Italia. Since 1944, it has been the representative seat of the Accademia Nazionale dei Lincei,

 Address: Via della Lungara, 230

Timetable
o
pen daily from Monday to Sunday 10-19h (last entry at 17h)
Closed on Tuesday

www.booking-villafarnesina.it/it/booking-1

 www.villafarnesina.it

Casino dell’Aurora Pallavicini in Palazzo Pallavicini-Rospigliosi

Built on the imposing ruins of the Baths of Constantine and today hidden by a large wall running along Via XXIV Maggio, Palazzo Pallavicini Rospigliosi was begun in 1613 to a design by Flaminio Ponzo at the behest of Cardinal Scipione Borghese. The vast complex was dotted with small casinos, one of which is the famous Casino dell’Aurora. Designed by the Flemish artist Jan van Santen, the Casino is a jewel of Roman Baroque: it is accessed via a beautiful double ramp, the so-called ‘Scala della Pastorella’. The façade is decorated with magnificent bas-reliefs from Roman sarcophagi dating between the 2nd and 3rd centuries A.D. the famous fresco of the Aurora by Guido Reni, painted on the vault, gave name and fame at the Casino. Scipione Borghese sold the estate to the Altemps family. In 1708 it was bought by the Pallavicini-Rospigliosi family, to whom it still belongs.

Address: Via 24 Maggio, 43

 aurorapallavicini@hpallavicini.it

 www.casinoaurorapallavicini.it

VILLA dei QUINTILI

The Villa dei Quintili, part of the Parco Archeologico dell’Appia Antica, is the largest residential complex in the suburbs of Rome.  The Villa certainly belonged to the brothers Sextus Quintilius Condianus and Sextus Quintilius Valerius Maximus, members of a senatorial family and consuls in 151 AD, who were killed by Emperor Commodus in 182-183 AD for plotting against him, so the residence was confiscated and became imperial property. Since then, Commodus himself and other emperors after him lived in the Villa.
The Greek writer Olympiodorus the Younger wrote that ‘the villa contained everything an average city could have, including a hippodrome, forums, fountains and baths’. The surviving structures have five different nuclei, extending along a large esplanade. A large nymphaeum, a hippodrome garden, a stadium, a residential area and two thermal baths. The remains and testimonies that can still be admired are impressive.

Address: Via Appia Nuova, 1092

Timetable
Open Monday 1 and Tuesday 2 November from 9 am to 4.30 pm (last admission 4 pm)
Closed Wednesday 3 November.

Tuesday to Sunday from 9.00 am to 6.30 pm in summer until 4.30 pm Autumn and winter closed
Monday

Villa Medici – Academy of France

Situated on the Pincio, not far from Trinità dei Monti, it dates back to the middle of the 16th century. It was designed by the architect Giovanni Lippi, known as Nanni di Baccio Bigio. In 1576, the splendid Villa was purchased by Cardinal Ferdinando de Medici to house his collection of works of art. Since the beginning of the 19th century, it has been home to the Academy of France.
The sober style of the outer façade is in stark contrast to the luxury of the inner façade, which opens with a charming loggia onto the magnificent gardens. The large rectangular garden is divided into sixteen square flowerbeds and retains much of its 16th-century appearance. The interior houses valuable works of art, precious furniture, tapestries, art and design objects, musical instruments, drawings, prints, sculptures, and a rich collection of casts and paintings, including portraits of 460 scholars from 1798 to 1936. The Villa houses Rome’s largest decorative arts libraries, and high-level cultural events are frequently organised.

Address:Viale della Trinità dei Monti, 1

Timetable
Monday to Sunday from 11.00 to 19.00 Closed on Tuesdays

Online purchase:

https://villamedici.vivaticket.it/

www.villamedici.it

Villa Poniatowski

Located in the Flaminio district, the Villa, formerly known as Villa Cesi, was considered by the famous traveller Michel de Montaigne as one of the most beautiful in the city by the end of the 16th century. The building takes its name from Prince Stanislaus Poniatowski, nephew of the last king of Poland. After buying it from Marquis Sinibaldi in 1781, he commissioned Giuseppe Valadier to carry out the restoration work. As a result, the Villa was embellished with basins and fountains. At the same time, the vast Italian garden, formed by terraced terraces, was adorned with antique sculptures and closed at the top by the ‘Loggia delle Delizie’. The exquisitely decorated interiors are noteworthy: the Sala dell’Ercole Farnese on the ground floor, the Sala Indiana – with 19th-century frescoes on exotic themes, and the Sala Egizia or Sala delle Colonne Doriche on the piano nobile – with Neoclassical frescoes of Egyptian landscapes and an arcade in perspective.

Acquired by the Italian State in 1988, Villa Poniatowski is now one of the two sites of the National Etruscan Museum of Villa Giulia.

Address: Via di Villa Giulia, 34

Timetable
1 April to 31 October Fridays and Saturdays 15 – 18 (last admission 17.15)
1 November to 31 March Friday – Saturday 10 am – 1 pm (last admission 12.15 pm)

Telephone booking required 06
3219698

Casino Boncompagni Ludovisi (dell’Aurora Ludovisi)

Widely praised for its beauty by Goethe, Stendhal, Gogol and D’Annunzio, the Villa Ludovisi with its enchanting gardens stood on the ancient Horti Sallustiani and occupied an area of over 30 hectares, from the Porta Salaria to the Porta Pinciana, right up to the edge of the Capuchin Convent.  Destroyed in the name of building speculation at the end of the nineteenth century, the Villa was parcelled out to make way for an upper-middle-class district, the present-day Ludovisi district: only the Casino, known as the Aurora, the present residence of the Princes of Piombino, remained intact.

Dating back to the 16th century, the Casino is an elegant two-storey building with a penthouse and belvedere tower. One of its most important works is the famous tempera fresco by Guercino depicting Aurora, which gives its name to the room that houses it and to the Casino itself. The architectural fresco decorations were instead carried out by Agostino Tassi. The frescoes on the walls of the Sala del Camino are also by Guercino.

A small room on the main floor has an oil painting on the vault attributed to Caravaggio, the only fresco in the world attributable to the artist.
Today the Casino dell’Aurora is for sale.

Address: Via Lombardia, 46

CONTACTS

Amministrazione Boncompagni Ludovisi
Email tatiana@principedipiombino.com

Telephone: 06 483942 (Mon, Wed, Fri 9-13)

Villa Albani-Torlonia

Owned by the Torlonia family since 1867, the Villa was built in the mid-18th century for Cardinal Alessandro Albani to house the prestigious collection of antiquities curated by Winckelmann. The Villa testifies to one of the highest expressions of the particular antiquarian taste that emerged in the mid-eighteenth century, in the transition between Rococo and Neoclassicism, when Rome had become a privileged destination of the Grand Tour.

In 1761, in the hall of the Casino, the neoclassical painter Anton Raphael Mengs painted the Parnassus fresco, perhaps the most important pictorial manifesto of the nascent neoclassical style. In the next room, known as the Antinous Room, is the famous relief of Antinous, from Villa Adriana. The Art Gallery houses works by Niccolò da Foligno, Perugino, Gherardo delle Notti, van Dyck, Tintoretto, Ribera, Guercino, Giulio Romano, Borgognone, Luca

Address: Via Salaria, 92

 Visit
It is possible to visit Villa Albani Torlonia, sending a request to:

(www.fondazionetorlonia.org/moduli/Fondazione-Torlonia-modulo-di-richiesta-visita-Villa-Albani-Torlonia.pdf) specifying the language spoken and send it by email or fax, and attach a copy of an identity document.

The Torlonia Foundation, following acceptance of the request, will propose the first available date.

The two-hour visits are free of charge and organised in groups of a maximum of 15 or 20 people accompanied by a guide and include Villa Albani Torlonia, the Italian garden and the Kaffeehaus with its newly restored sculpture collection. 

 info@fondazionetorlonia.org

 www.fondazionetorlonia.org

Villa Lante on the Janiculum

The construction, which took place between 1518 and 1525, was commissioned by an official of Tuscan origin, Baldassarre Turini. In 1551 the property passed into the hands of the Lante family, from whom it took its name, which it still retains today despite numerous ownership changes.
Overlooking Rome, Villa Lante al Gianicolo, together with Villa Madama, is one of the best-preserved 16th-century Roman villas and a precious testimony to the work of Raphael’s school. The architecture is attributed to Giulio Romano, Raphael’s favourite pupil, who was assisted in the decorations by Giovanni da Udine, Polidoro da Caravaggio, Vincenzo Tamagni and Maturino’s perfect fusion of architecture, painting and sculpture.
The building, built on the remains of an earlier Roman villa, has a beautiful Renaissance façade, a splendid loggia, with fine stucco work attributed to Giovanni da Udine, opening onto the city skyline. The vestibule is decorated with a Triumph of Rome by Valentin de Boulogne and, above the doors, high reliefs by Antonio Canova.
The State of Finland purchased it in 1950, and since then, it has belonged to its Embassy to the Holy See and the Institutum Romanum FinlandieThe Villa can be visited by appointment, and the institute also organises conferences, seminars and concerts for Roman and international audiences.

Address: Passeggiata del Gianicolo, 10

Timetable
Monday to Friday 9am-12pm
Closed on
Saturday and Sunday
Booking required at mal info@irfrome.org

www.irfrome.org

 

 

VILLA ADRIANA
and
VILLA d’ESTE
Tivoli

 

continua

Hadrian’s Villa in Tivoli

Address Villa Adriana
Largo Marguerite Yourcenar – Tivoli

Due to its size and exceptional State of preservation, the Villa is undoubtedly the most famous of the villas located on the outskirts of Rome. Its structures also constitute one of the most important and admirable examples of Roman architecture. The Villa was started by Emperor Hadrian probably in 126 AD, after his return from his trip to the eastern provinces. Hadrian reproduced in his Villa the places and buildings that had most impressed him. The Lyceum, the Academy and the Pecile in Athens, the Canopus, a canal on the Nile delta, and the valley of Tempe in Thessaly. As a memory of this trip. On Hadrian’s death, the Villa passed to his successors, who restored and embellished it. Unfortunately, it was devastated during the barbarian invasions and used in the Middle Ages as a quarry for building materials by the inhabitants of Tivoli. From the Renaissance onwards, many famous artists came to study the ruins of the Villa.
A reconstructive model of the Villa can be found at the beginning of the route. Inside the Villa, you can start your visit from the Pecile, a vast portico with a garden and a pool in the centre, then the Sala dei Filosofi, a large room with niches, followed by the Villa dell’ Isola or Maritime Theatre. Finally, to the south of the Maritime Theatre, there is a thermal building called Eliocamino, consisting of a few rooms with cold and lukewarm water pools and a large circular room occupied by a pool, with heating systems.
On the east side of the Pecile are a nymphaeum and a series of buildings, including a banquet hall. Further on are the two thermal complexes of the Small and Large Baths, where all the facilities that made up the Roman baths are still well preserved, with the gymnasium, changing rooms, and hot and cold water pools. After this set of buildings, we come to the so-called Canopus, inspired by the Egyptian city of the same name near Alexandria. In the centre is a basin surrounded by columns, and at the back is the semicircular Serapeum, decorated with Egyptian sculptures and statues of Antinous. Turning back, one passes by the Praetorium and then the Barracks of the Vigils and the Imperial Palace complex, where there are four groups of buildings: the Golden Square, the Doric Atrium, the Palace Peristyle and the Library Courtyard. You can climb up to the Pavilion and the Tempe Terrace from the courtyard, overlooking the valley below. From here, through a small wood, you can reach the Casino Fede, built-in 1700, and finally, the small theatre used for private performances for the emperor, and still used today for concerts and theatre and opera performances.

Timetable
Open every day

from 8.30 am to 6.30 pm from 4 to 30 October
The Museums are from 10 am to 6 pm.

from 8.30 am to 5 pm from 31 October 2021 to 27 February
The Museums are from 10 am to 4 pm.

from 8.30 am to 6.30 pm from 28 February to 26 March
The ticket office closes one and a half hours early

Email: villa.adriana@coopculture.it

 Website: www.levillae.com

 Online tickets:

www.coopculture.it/it/poi/villa-adriana/

Villa d’Este

Built at the behest of Cardinal Ippolito d’Este, son of Lucrezia Borgia, the Villa is an outstanding example of Renaissance architecture, built on two floors, with rooms frescoed by the best Mannerist painters.

The garden project of Pirro Ligorio is characterised by a Triumph of monumental fountains (two of them by Bernini). Thanks to the innovative engineering, the Villa was connected to an underground water source that fed the fountains without mechanical devices but only gravity and the ground slope. As a result, it is a masterpiece of art and nature,  with unique water features.

Following the avenues bordered by the box hedges, you will find the Bicchierone, the Ovato Fountain and the Dragon Fountain, the Hundred Fountains and the spectacular Organ Fountain, which will enchant you with renaissance melodies.

Info: +39 0774332920 – www.villadestetivoli.info

 

 

 

 

THE GREAT
PARKS

continua

Villa BORGHESE

The Villa Borghese Park occupies a vast area in the heart of the city. The Villa is full of centuries-old trees, ponds, Italian gardens and lawns and contains numerous buildings, fountains, sculptures, and Baroque, Neoclassical and Renaissance monuments. The construction of the Villa was entrusted by Cardinal Scipione Borghese, nephew of Pope Paul V, to Flaminio Ponzo and his pupil Giovanni Vasanzio. They were succeeded in 1621 by Girolamo Rainaldi. The gardens were designed by Domenico Savino da Montepulciano. The work commissioned by Scipione Borghese lasted from 1608 until 1633, the year of the Cardinal’s death. At the beginning of the 20th century, the Italian State bought the Villa and turned it into a public park.

Inside Villa Borghese is also  the Garden of the Lake, the Secret Gardens (Giardino dell’Uccelliera, Giardino Vecchio, Giardino della Meridiana and Giardino della Coltivazione), Piazza di Siena, the Casino Borghese where the Borghese Gallery is located, the Fortezzuola, today the Canonina Museum, the Etruscan Museum of Via Giulia and the National Gallery of Moder and Contemporary art and the Deer Park.

Villa DORIA-PAMPHILIJ

The country residence of the Pamphilj family became a sumptuous aristocratic residence under Innocent X in 1546. It was enlarged in 1856 by Prince Andrea V Doria Pamphilj with the purchase of Villa Corsini. In 1957, first the Italian State and then the Municipality of Rome between 1965 and 1971 made it possible to open this immense Park. As a result, numerous parts of the Villa still preserve conspicuous evidence of Roman and medieval times: such as the Trajan-Paul aqueduct, which serves as a boundary along the Via Aurelia Antica, numerous Roman funerary structures in various sectors of the Park, while the Casale di Giovio preserves parts of the imperial age and an early medieval architrave.

The splendid Casino del Bel Respiro, or (Palazzo Algardi) with its gardens full of fountains, some of the greatest artists worked, such as Alessandro Algardi and Giovan Francesco Grimaldi, Gian Lorenzo Bernini. The Villa, which extends for hundreds of hectares, with lots of greenery, is accessed through the monumental Arch of the Four Winds on Via di San Pancrazio.
Address: Via di San Pancrazio

Villa ADA SAVOIA

Larger than Villa Borghese and inferior in size only to the Appia Antica Regional Park and Villa Doria Pamphilj, it is a magnificent example of a landscaped garden adorned with numerous neoclassical and eclectic buildings. These include the remains of Antemnae, one of the oldest cities in Lazio.

Villa Ada Savoia is mainly linked to the House of Savoy, which owned it from 1872 to 1878 and 1904 to 1946.

In 1878, on the death of Vittorio Emanuele, the Villa was sold to Count Giuseppe Tellfner, who named the property after his wife, Ada. From 1878 to 1901, the Villa remained the property of the Count. Vittorio Emanuele III bought back Villa Ada in 1904 and gave it to his wife, Queen Elena. Thus, the area towards Monte Antenne took the name ‘Bosco Regina Elena’. Even in an urban centre, in Villa Ada, you feel being in a plank of wood surrounded by centuries-old pine, holm-oak, laurel and chestnut woods, populated by squirrels, hedgehogs and wild rabbits. Villa Ada Savoia is an ideal place to spend a relaxing day.

Address: Via Salaria, 265

Timetable
always open from 7 am to sunset

BOTANICAL GARDEN

Between Via della Lungara and the Janiculum Hill, there is a magical place in the Park of Villa Corsini (once the residence of Christina of Sweden). The Botanical Garden is one of the largest in Italy,  here on an area of 12 hectares, the naturalistic varieties from all over the world are cultivated. The main collections include giant old trees such as oriental plane trees, cork oaks, Turkey oaks, downy oaks, Himalayan cedars and more than 300 centuries-old specimens of more than 130 species. The bamboo collection is one of the richest in Europe, the Mediterranean forest, consisting mainly of oaks, the group of gymnosperms such as sequoias, conifers, pines, firs, larches, cedars of Lebanon, cypresses and junipers. Then there are the greenhouses. The orchid greenhouse, with around 400 species. The succulent greenhouse. The Tropical Greenhouse. The Aroma Garden, the Mediterranean Garden and the Japanese Garden (in spring, in April, don’t miss the Hanami, the awesome cherry blossom). The pond, a stream and some pools for aquatic plants. A splendid rose garden with around 60 species. A collection of Palms, with rare specimens.
BOTANICAL GARDENS
Largo Cristina di Svezia, 23 A
OPEN 9.00-18.30 every day, including Sundays and public holidays
Daylight saving time 9.00 18.30
Standard
time
9.00 17.30

 

Appia Antica Regional Park

Parco Regionale dell’Appia Antica is a unique place where naturalistic aspects and important archaeological monuments merge in perfect harmony,

The Parco dell’Appia Antica covers an area of approximately 3,500 hectares and includes the Via Appia Antica
The most important and famous road of ancient Rome, the valley of the Caffarella, the archaeological area of the Via Latina and the Parco degli Acquedotti.

The first section of the Park begins at the Aurelian Walls at the Appia Antica near Porta San Sebastiano. As far as the Belvedere of Cecilia Metella, between the high walls of the great aristocratic estates of the post-Renaissance period are some of the most essential Christian catacombs, including those of St. Callistus and St. Sebastian. Between the Circus of Maxentius, the Mausoleum of Cecilia Metella and the ring road, significant archaeological remains are mainly represented by the monumental tombs located along the route. In addition to the imposing complex of the Villa dei Quintili.
After the Raccordo Anulare, the landscape opens out onto the large estates of the Agro Romano as far as the Castelli Romani.
Another striking aspect of the landscape of the Parco dell’Appia Antica is the Parco degli Acquedotti (Aqueduct Park).
T
he area between the Via Appia Nuova and the Via Tuscolana, characterised by the large surviving arches of the aqueducts that brought water to Rome from the nearby hills, admirable engineering works of the ancient Romans.

The Via Appia Antica is closed to traffic on public holidays and is the ideal place for walking or cycling to discover an immense natural and historical-artistic heritage that is truly unique in the world.

Address: Via Appia Antica, 42

Timetable:
The Park’s offices are open at various times: see information points in the “Find out more” section.

Email:

info@parcoappiaantica.it

 puntoappia@parcoappiaantica.it

 Website:

www.parcoappiaantica.it

  

Villa Celimontana

 Villa Celimontana, one of Rome’s best-loved villas, stands on the Caelian Hill and has its main entrance in Piazza della Navicella, adjacent to the church of Santa Maria in Domnica. The Villa covers a site dating back to the Flavian and Trajan era, of which parts of the walls are still visible; in this area, there was the castra of the V cohort of the Vigiles and excavations at the end of the 19th century brought to light the remains of the BasilicaHilariana. Ciriaco Mattei purchased in the mid-16th century the area of the Villa, occupied in the Middle Ages by vegetable gardens and vineyards, and transformed it into a park full of gardens adorned with ancient sculptures fountains and bitter orange trees, and the Egyptian obelisk of Ramses II.
With time, the Villa’s ancient collections of antiquities were lost or dispersed. The Park was renovated at the end of the 19th century when it took the form of an English garden.

A quiet area is now an ideal place for outdoor breakfasts and walks, as well as a summer setting for concerts and shows.

 Address: Via della Navicella, 12

Reopened from 27 May 2021
from 1 May to 31 October from 7 am to 6 pm from

1 November to 30 April from 7 am to 5 pm.

 

Villa TORLONIA

Initially owned by the Pamphilj family, Villa Torlonia was purchased in 1760 by the Colonna family. At the end of the eighteenth century, it was sold to the banker Giovanni Torlonia, who commissioned Giuseppe Valadier to transform the rural property into a sumptuous residence with the construction of the Casino Nobile the Casino dei Principi and the Scuderie.

In 1832, the heir Alessandro Torlonia continued the embellishment work, with the construction of other buildings, such as the Temple of Saturn, the mock ruins in neo-classical style, a Tribune with fountain, an Amphitheatre, the characteristic Café-House, the Theatre and the Orangery, unusual buildings such as the Swiss Hut, the Greenhouse, the Tower, the Moorish Grotto, the Tournament Grounds and adorning it with paths, small lakes, exotic plants and two Obelisks in pink granite. Finally, Giovanni, another Torlonia heir, built the Medieval Villa, the Red Villa, the Watchman’s Villa, and transformed the Swiss Hut into the eclectic Casina delle Civette (House of the Owls).

During Fascism, the Villa became Mussolini‘s residence.

Since 1978, Villa Torlonia has been a public park with three museums

the Museum of the Casina delle Civette, the Museum of the Casino Nobile, the Casino dei Principi, and the Technotown toy library.
Villa TorloniaVia
Nomentana 70 Bus 60

Villa Aldobrandini

Near the Quirinale, the Villa looks like a hanging garden, enclosed by walls. Coming from Via Nazionale vii, one enters through a steep flight of steps that climbs among ancient ruins dating from the end of the first century. The present size of the Villa is what remains of it after the opening of Via Nazionale, which significantly reduced its area.

In the 1500s, the Villa included a building, a secret garden and a park that extended as far as Cardinal Scipione Borghese’s Palace (later Palazzo Pallavicini Rospigliosi). The restoration and embellishment of the Villa were entrusted to the architect Carlo Lambardi, who enlarged the entrance door and built a loggia over it.

In 1600, Clement Vitelli sold the Villa to Pope Clement VIII. Giacomo Della Porta, the new owner’s trusted architect, provided the Palace with staircases, loggias, and a continuous façade overlooking the garden. The garden was enriched with tall trees, some of which still exist. The avenues were furnished with statues, vases, cippus, seats, some fountains and a fishpond. While the upper floors of the Palace housed a vibrant collection of works of art, the Villa was later inherited by the Pamphilj and Borghese families, who moved a large part of the Aldobrandini collection to the galleries of their palaces.

Today only the garden is open to the public.

Address: Via Mazzarino, 11

Timetable

the garden is open from dawn to dusk. It can be visited freely.
The three pavilions in the three corners of the Park CANNOT be visited.

The patronal building, accessed from Via Panisperna, cannot be visited.

OSTIA ANTICA

Ostia Antica Archaeological Park

Castle of Julius II

The Village of Ostia Antica

 

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You cannot miss to visit the Parco Archeologico di Ostia Antica, one of the largest archeological sites of ancient Rome. The colony was founded between the end of the fifth century and the beginning of the fourth century BC as a ‘castrum’, a rectangular fortified citadel. Initially, it served as a naval base under the control of a Roman quaestor and then, from the second century, because of its increasing importance for trade and for the food supply of Rome, it began to expand.  

Under the Emperor Augustus and his successors, the city was provided with a theatre, a first forum and an aqueduct, but it was the construction of the port of Claudius, and especially that of the port of Trajan, which further increased its importance as an administrative center for trade. After the middle of the third century, the city began to decline as a result of its gradual moving away from the coast and the silting up of the river, that was no longer navigable.

Entering in the area  from the ancient door you will find yourself immersed in an atmosphere of past times.

 www.ostiaantica.beniculturali.it

Tickets

www.coopculture.it/it/poi/parco-archeologico-di-ostia-antica/

 

WHERE TO ENJOY
THE BEST VIEWS
OF ROME

 

 

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JANICULUM (Trastevere Area)

PINCIO HILL (Piazza del Popolo Area)

ORANGE GARDEN (Aventino Hill)

TRINITA’ dei MONTI (Spanish Steps)

VITTORIANO (Piazza Venezia)

CAMPIDOGLIO

PALATINE

CASTEL SANT’ANGELO

DOME OF ST PETER’S