Monday, February 5, 2007

The Villa Borghese

The Villa Borghese

Umbrella Pines on the villa grounds

A monument to Mussolini

The Villa Borghese will probably not be on the organized tour, but it is definetly worth the side trip. I will warn you that getting there is not so easy from the Met.Ro station. There is a parking area and mall of the same name there and signs will direct you there instead of the park (by the way 'parcheggio' means parking garage and NOT park). Whatever you do, do not enter an area that does not look like a17th century Italian villa. Once you do arrive in the park, the grounds are quite impressive. There are formal and informal garden areas and many interesting sculptures. While the grounds are impressive, the reason for visiting is definetly the sculptures inside the museum. Their collection of Bernini sculptures is worth any amount of time you devote to it. There are also collections of sculptures from the Egyptian era up to the 19th century. The sheer number of paintings will overwhelm you, but the ceiling frescoes are by far the most breathtaking. They do not allow any bags or cameras inside, so bring a sketchbook. The villa is definetly worth the trip if you have the time. I would recommend setting aside about 2 hours for the whole visit, more if you want to spend a little more time in the gardens.

Elizabeth Conte

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