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The Beauty of TIVOLI: HADRIAN’S Villa & Villa D’ESTE
Enjoy the two of the most splendid sites outside of Rome: the ancient Villa of the Emperor Hadrian, where he used to escape to find a relaxing, private and exotic refuge out of Rome, and Villa d’Este, a Renaissance jewel built by a cardinal in the 1500 and decorated with hundreds of unique fountains and breathtaking panoramic views.
During the past 2000 years, the wealthy families of Rome have always tried to escape from the noise, crowds, heat and the dangerous conspiracies of Rome. They found a wonderful haven in the Roman countryside, with forests, vineyards, waterfalls and natural SPA water-springs. Here, out of view from the prying eyes of the capital city and away from the strict and severe rules of Roman traditions, they enjoyed a much more pleasant life.
Over the centuries Tivoli has been one of their favorite “secret escapes”, due to the beauty of the landscape, the fresh air and healthy conditions of the area and, last but not least, because of its proximity to Rome.
Nineteen centuries ago the great Emperor Hadrian built one of the most magnificent villas of the ancient world in Tivoli. About 300 acres of imposing, original, elegant and still today very well preserved buildings, surrounded by monumental fountains of many shapes and dimensions, and trees and plants meant to re-create a perfectly artificial, natural landscape.
The ruins still tell the intriguing stories of an emperor who was a forward-looking political leader, a military genius, an original, creative architect, a curious traveler, a writer, an intellectual and -most of all- a dreamer.
This tour includes quite a lot of walking, but it is an unbelievable opportunity for you to fall in love with the ancient world: follow Hadrian out of Rome and into his night parties in the Canopus, his political meetings in the Golden Square, his moments of relaxation in the silence of Thermal Baths, his meditations in the Maritime Theater, his performances in the Greek Theater. All of this surrounded by this beautiful, natural environment.
Your guide, together with the driver will take you up to the hill of Tivoli, surrounded by its Medieval Walls. Here you will find one of the most famous Renaissance villas in Europe: built by Cardinal Ippolito d’Este in the mid-XVI century.
Ippolito’s mother was for sure a V.I.P.: the beautiful and ever-debated Lucrezia Borgia. As a cardinal, Ippolito lost his race to the Papacy and then moved to Tivoli, where he built his amazing residence.
Follow him during his parties in the noble apartments, descend hundreds of steps and be overwhelmed by the waterspouts of the Fountain of the Dragons, the enormous size of the Oval Fountain, and the shocking water-games of the Fountain of Neptune. Walk beside the “One Hundred Fountains” to reach the splendid (and polemic!) Rometta Fountain. And finally hear the music coming from the water-machinery behind the Fountain of the Organ and the Fountain of the Owl.
The breathtaking panoramic view of the valley will be a perfect conclusion to this unforgettable experience.
*If you have a party of 9 or more please contact us to arrange your private tour.
PRICES: tour guide fees must be considered as a total, not per person.
What a wonderful experience led by our tour guide, Marta! Our children ages 7 and 5 really absorbed the stories and enjoyed their scavenger huntlooking for specific objects. ... read more
This was our third tour with Joy of Rome and second with Francesca. She has a gift for bringing the stories behind the artworks to life and sharing her enthusiasm.... read more
Our guide Francesca was fantastic! As an art historian and curator of street art, she really made the subject com alive. I strongly recommend this activity for anyone interested in... read more
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