Villa Borghese Gardens

Rome, Italy

Villa Borghese is a landscape garden in the naturalistic English manner in Rome, containing a number of buildings, museums and attractions. The gardens were developed for the Villa Borghese Pinciana, built by the architect Flaminio Ponzio, developing sketches by Scipione Borghese, who used it as a party villa and to house his art collection. The gardens as they are now were remade in the early 19th century.

In 1605, Cardinal Scipione Borghese, nephew of Pope Paul V and patron of Bernini, began turning this former vineyard into the most extensive gardens built in Rome since Antiquity. The vineyard's site is identified with the gardens of Lucullus, the most famous in the late Roman republic. In the 19th century much of the garden's former formality was remade as a landscape garden in the English taste. The Villa Borghese gardens were long informally open, but were bought by the commune of Rome and given to the public in 1903. The large landscape park in the English taste contains several villas. The Spanish Steps lead up to this park, and there is another entrance at the Piazza del Popolo. The Pincio in the south part of the park, offers one of the greatest views over Rome.

A balustrade (dating from the early seventeenth century) from the gardens, was taken to England in the late 19th century, and installed in the grounds of Cliveden House, a mansion in Buckinghamshire, in 1896. The Piazza di Siena, located in the villa, hosted the equestrian dressage, individual jumping, and the jumping part of the eventing competition for the 1960 Summer Olympics.

Today the Galleria Borghese is housed in the Villa Borghese itself. It contains an art gallery of paintings for example by Titian, Raphael and Caravaggio. The Villa Giulia adjoining the Villa Borghese gardens was built in 1551 - 1555 as a summer residence for Pope Julius III; now it contains the Etruscan Museum.



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Founded: 1605

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User Reviews

Shrabin (17 months ago)
It is one the biggest park of Europe. It has area of about 2 km. The big palace like building is a large museum. There is a theater like building as well. Some statues of animals can be found there too. It is very crowded during noon.
田中景子 (17 months ago)
Lovely and beautiful park There are several places for travelers such as museums around this park, however, it's able to feel local Italian atmosphere in this park. You can see how Italian people take rest in this park, how Italian kids play in this park, and how Italian nature is in this park. If you have much time here, I highly recommend you to visit this park and touch atmosphere that not made for travelers.
Sonya Saturday (18 months ago)
What a beautiful place. I loved spending the day here. There were so many birds: seagulls, geese and parrots! A woman played Simon & Garfunkel songs on a harp. Couples took rowboats across the lake. It was so lovely!
Valeria Atamanova (19 months ago)
Such a great place to spend an entire day in! Just enjoying the beautiful nature, drinking wine, wondering around and just being happy. Probably the best option for a weekend when Rome is packed with people and it gets too loud, too crowded in the city center. Villa Borghese just brings you joy and happiness.
Catherine York (19 months ago)
Lovely park sadly crossed by some very busy roads so keep an eye on the kids if you're out rollerblading or cycling. However, there's plenty to do here as the park holds both an art gallery and a zoo as well as a temporary summer theatre that stages the works of Shakespeare (in Italian). Important sports events such as show-jumping and volleyball tournaments are also held here.
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