Tivoli is one of the oldest settlements in Italy. Since the Imperial times the Romans loved it for its mild clime, the thermal waters and the rich vegetation, and last but not least the short distance from Rome.
Hadrian’s Villa is the most famous of many rich patrician residences, it’s a place where the Emperor tried to relax from the confusion of the Capital and to realize his revolutionary ideas of architecture.
We will be happy to show you baths and pools, the Imperial quarters, the libraries, the guesthouse (decorated with wonderful mosaic floors) and the barracks, all framed by wild bushes, olive and pine trees.
Tivoli gardens belong to another time, some centuries later in fact, when another powerful man, Cardinal Hippolito D’Este (son of Lucrezia Borgia) established his residence in Tivoli where the Pope assigned him as governor. The Cardinal had great ideas about himself and he was sure to be elected Pope sooner or later. The convent where he was assigned was not meeting his need of showing the power and wealth of the Este family, so he called the best architects, painters and engineers to modify a simple building on the slope of a hill into the most luxurious villa of his time. The Villa d’Este gardens and fountains are the result of all that work. Villa d’Este Palace, is decorated with beautiful frescoes showing landscapes and mythological scenes. We will visit the palace and then walk among hundreds of fountains, waterfalls, grottoes, pools and Italian style gardens with some centuries old trees.