Tivoli – An Escape from Roma

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With ruins of Ancient Villas in the foreground and the view to Rome beyond, here is the playground of Emperors and cardinals at Tivoli

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Thirty Km North East of Rome, cool in summer while the city sizzles, situated at the falls of the Aniene river where it issues from the Sabine hills, is Tivoli. It is a half day excursion from Rome and absolutely worth the effort, especially with the assistance of a knowledgable local guide. Here is a gallery of photographs from the gardens.

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The gardens are part of Villa d’Este, commissioned by Cardinal Ippolio II d’Este son of Alsonso i d’Este  and Lucrezia Borgia and grandson of Pope Alexander VI. He had been appointed Governor of Tivoli by Pope Julius III, with the gift of the existing palace. From 1550 until his death in 1572, when the villa was nearing completion, Cardinal d’Este created a palatial setting surrounded by a spectacular terraced garden, which took advantage of the dramatic slope but required innovations in bringing a sufficient water supply, which was employed in cascades, water tanks, troughs and pools, water jets and fountains. This garden and their water features were imitated in the next two centuries from Portugal to Poland.

Drawing inspiration (and many statues and much of the marble used for construction) from the nearby Villa Adriana, the palatial retreat of Emperor Hadrian, and reviving Roman techniques to supply water to a sequence of fountains, the cardinal created this fantasy garden.

Of course the Gardens need people to appreciate them. First is a group shot of Group Barbara on out Trafalgar Italian Concerto Tour, then an excursion of nuns checking out the gardens built by a Prince of the Church 550 years ago, then a series of individuals enjoying these amazing surroundings.

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Lastly the view again back to Rome. If you get the chance to visit Italy, don’t miss out on a trip to Tivoli, beauty, peace, nature roman art – without the heat and crowds.

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6 thoughts on “Tivoli – An Escape from Roma

  1. Beautiful place, just love Italy. Wasn’t aware that a Pope could have children. Read up about this particular Pope and apparently they can, as have others. Interesting!

  2. This was definitely one of my favorite villas on the trip along with Castello Del Trebbio near Florence and Villa Rufolo in Ravello.. I’m wondering if you snapped a photo of the Tivoli Arch on the bus ride to Villa d’Este. This was another sculpture by Arnaldo Pomodoro, who did the bronze Sphere we saw at the Vatican, which you included in your May 18 post. If you’re not sure what I’m talking about see http://www.arnaldopomodoro.it/en/archivio/view-190 . Thanks for sharing the beautiful images of these wonderful memories.

  3. Thanks for the comment John – I checked your link and can remember the arch but took no photo – I hate photographing though windows of buses and trains. I do sometimes, but am always disappointed with the results.
    You will find a big change in the blog now I am home with my computer. It will become more of a tourist photo blog and less of a random journal.
    I am working on my post about the Vatican and St Peters at them moment. Keep up the comments please.

  4. Thank you for sharing that with us Gary, this beautiful place is magical. I have ticked it on my to visit list.

  5. Once again Gary love your photos & commentary on the gardens and the river system in Rome. My favourite would have to be of you & Julie infront of the fountains.
    Regards,
    Di

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