Villa Jovis

Capri, Italy

Villa Jovis is a Roman palace on Capri, southern Italy, built by emperor Tiberius and completed in AD 27. Tiberius mainly ruled from there until his death in AD 37.

Villa Jovis is the largest of the twelve Tiberian villas on Capri mentioned by Tacitus. The entire complex, spanning several terraces and a difference in elevation of about 40 m, covers some 7,000 m² (1.7 acres). While the remaining eight levels of walls and staircases only hint at the grandeur the building must have had in its time, recent reconstructions have shown the villa to be a remarkable testament to 1st-century Roman architecture.

The north wing of the building contained the living quarters, while the south wing saw administrative use. The east wing was meant for receptions, whereas the west wing featured an open-walled hall (ambulatio) which offered a scenic view towards Anacapri.

As water was difficult to come by where the villa was built, Roman engineers constructed an intricate system for the collection of rainwater from the roofs and a large cistern that supplied the palace with fresh water.

South of the main building there are remains of a watch tower (specula) for the quick telegraphic exchange of messages with the mainland, e.g. by fire or smoke.

Access to the complex is only possible on foot, and involves an uphill walk of about two kilometres from Capri town.

References:

Comments

Your name



Address

Via Tiberio 79, Capri, Italy
See all sites in Capri

Details

Founded: 27 AD
Category: Prehistoric and archaeological sites in Italy

Rating

4.3/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Peter Hadfield (42 days ago)
We had a very interesting visit to Villa Jovis, it's well worth the effort. There is a long and often steep walk up to the villa, but you can have a break at Bar Jovis on the way. I suggest that you read about it before the visit as there is minimal information on site. There are tremendous views in all directions as it is on a high point of the island
Josephine Farriss (2 months ago)
So devastated Villa Jovis was closed for some reason, I think perhaps some renovations? But there was absolutely no signage anywhere closer to the bottom where the roads and signs were indicating. My parents had visited 30 years ago and have been talking about it all my life saying how incredible it was! Travelled all the way from Sydney, Australia to Capri to see this marvel and I know it’s obviously just bad timing… but was just so disappointed when we got there and it was closed off, honestly was so close to crying ? Had to tell lots of people on the way up it was closed, saw a few others arrive and they were frustrated there was no signage either (as it’s a bit of a walk) and a huge trek off the beaten track from Villa Lysis
Samantha Bonelli (2 months ago)
Great ruins and amazing hike up to them. Be sure to download an audio guide beforehand if you don’t speak Italian (Audio culture has a great one) and stop at the park next door while walking in. Bring lots of water! There is nothing up there to buy.
Clinton Probst (2 months ago)
The walk from the main piazza is long, taxing and mostly uphill. The views of the ocean (both sides) and private gardens along the way are worth the hike! The ruins and views are well worth the effort, especially for history buffs!
Gail Thomas (3 months ago)
A long uphill walk but if you're into Roman history, it's well worth it. The views en route are spectacular. This visit would be impossible for anyone with mobility difficulties.
Powered by Google

Featured Historic Landmarks, Sites & Buildings

Historic Site of the week

Kakesbeck Castle

Kakesbeck is one of the largest medieval fortifications in Münsterland and the oldest castle in Lüdinghausen. The imposingly grown complex originated in 1120 as a motte, a small hilltop tower castle. After numerous changes of ownership, the castle was extended onto two islands, but it was not until the 14th century that it underwent significant alterations and extensions under the von Oer family. The estate experienced its heyday in the middle of the 18th century, when it covered an area of almost one square kilometre and consisted of five further outer castles in addition to the core castle, which were secured by ramparts and moats.

The well-maintained condition of the castle today is thanks to the late Wilfried Grewing, the former lord of the castle. The foundation named after him has been particularly committed to preserving the property since 2020.