Tour of Tivoli’s Villa d’Este – The gardens of Cardinal Ippolito d’Este
Escape from the city to the beautiful gardens of Villa d’Este near Rome.
After an unsuccessful run to the papal throne Cardinal Ippolito II d’Este was appointed as the governor of Tivoli, Ippolito invested all his great wealth into the gardens and built this huge and marvelous Villa on the hillside on a terrain he confiscated from the Franciscan monastery nearby. Ippolito tried many times to be elected pope but was disappointed each time and with his frustration the gardens became bigger and bigger, finally completing the gardens after 20 years of investing in them. Ippolito died a year after the completion of the gardens, afterwards the gardens were left to his family and transferred hands many times and were eventually annexed to the church only to be neglected for 200 years. The gardens were left ruined up until the turn of the 20th century when they were restored again by the Italian State and have returned to their former glory.
The gardens were designed by Pirro Ligorio, and are an artistic and natural marvel built on different levels covering an area of about 4.5 hectares(11.5 acres): among trees, statues, green and 500 fountains! From each terrace you can enjoy the beautiful view of the surrounding landscape.
The Villa is about one hour drive from the center of Rome.