A big green heart. This is how Villa Borghese - the most famous garden in Rome - looks like on a city map of Rome. Although just at the third place by extension after Villa Pamphili and Villa Ada, Villa Borghese is for sure the most loved and lively garden in Rome.
Construction on Villa Borghese began in 1610. Cardinal Scipione wanted to establish the Borghese family amongst noble Roman society and impress both his friends and rivals. Indeed Cardinal Scipione was well aware of the political value of prestigious private estates and therefore started collecting artworks and statues to glorify the social status of the Borghese family.
In 1903 the city of Rome obtained the Villa from the Boghese family and opened the park to the public.
Nowadays, Villa Borghese offers visitors both culture and fun and it's really appreciated by those who love outdoor walks and exercising in the open air, surrounded by nature. Every weekend the gardens of Villa Borghese are filled with families sitting on the grass around colorful picnic and art lovers, amazed by the incredible number of museums, fountains, artificial lakes and historical buildings located in the gardens.
The Galleria Borghese is home to four statue groups by Gianlorenzo Bernini and Caravaggio's paintings;
Villa Giulia hosts an impressive collection of the Etruscan art;
Galleria Nazionale d'Arte Moderna is a national gallery of modern and contemporary art;
Visit the gardens and their attractions riding a bike or a segway with your family and stop to eat something when you find the spot you like most. The park is quite big, so you will probably want to go around by renting a bike, to make sure you'll see it all.
Next to entrance at the southeast corner of the Pincio area and to the one located on Via dell Belle Arti - near the Modern Art Museum- it's possible to rent bikes, segways and rickshaws.
Villa Borghese offers activities and attractions that will perfectly suite your kids' desire of entertainment. Indeed, it's easy for kids to feel overwhelmed by many churches and museums and they might enjoy some time of fun visiting the biopark.
The Bioparco zoo, the zoological park of Rome, was turned into a biopark in 1998. Today the biopark maintains more than 200 different species and has become a teaching zoo, aiming at raising the awareness about the major threats the animals face in the wild.
The 19th-century Pincio Gardens rise above Piazza del Popolo. Make sure to save some of your time to stop there, so you won't miss one of the most unique panoramic view of the city.