If you ever find yourself in Rome for more than 4-5 days or you belong to the lucky ones who have visited Rome more than once, you have to schedule a day- trip up to Tivoli. It’s almost certain that you have already visited most of the sights (no matter how many times you’ll come you won’t manage to see everything) and you’d like to see something new, something interesting.
HOW YOU’LL GET TO TIVOLI
If you don’t own a car, you’d better get there by train. We followed the proverb “Asking you can go everywhere” so we took a bus from Termini which got us to the train station Tiburtina where we took the train. If you prefer the express one which doesn’t have stops, in about 35 minutes you’ll be in Tivoli. By using the car or the bus you’ll need the same time except if you find traffic so it will take longer.
We used the regular train that stops in several stations and in an hour we were in Tivoli.
From the train station to the city is about 15 minutes on foot. The biggest part of the route is beside the river Aniene and is very pleasant. Nevertheless, don’t forget to have a hat and comfortable shoes.
Tivoli is 30 km away from Rome and is built on a hill next to the waterfalls of the river Aniene. If you find yourself up there, you’ll admire a unique view of the Italian countryside. The rich Romans used to build their cottages in Tivoli.
Olive trees, vineyards and a lot of green lush cover the slopes of the surrounding hills.
WHAT TO SEE IN TIVOLI
If you finally go to Tivoli by train and you’ll walk from the train station to the city you’ll meet on your right side Villa D’Este. It’s a masterpiece of the Italian Renaissance. The Villa was built in the 16th century and is in the catalogue of the UNESCO monuments of Cultural Heritage.
The Pope Julius the III wanted to thank the Cardinal Hyppolitus B’ D’Este, the son of Alfonso and Lucretia Borgia because he helped him to take the throne in 1550. So he appointed him governor of Tivoli. When the Cardinal arrived to Tivoli, he discovered that he was obliged to stay in an old and uncomfortable monastery that was partially repaired and it had been turned into the governor’s residence. But Hyppolitus as a son of a wealthy family of that era was differently grown up. So he decided to turn the monastery into a wealthy villa that was identical to the one that it was building at the same time in Rome.
Walk around the lush green landscape of the gardens with the incredible fountains and the halls with the amazing frescoes. The entrance fee costs 8 Euro.
The emperor’s Hadrian Villa is part of the world cultural heritage of UNESCO too and is the archaeological symbol of Tivoli.
Villa Gregoriana is a lush green park with waterfalls, caves and an incredible view. Walking in the canyon is getting difficult at some parts; nevertheless there are several benches where you can rest for a while.
The Rocca Pia is an imposing castle which is located in the city center, just a few meters from the Piazza Garibaldi. It was built in 1461 by Pope Pius II in order to control the town from the top and to avoid the mass uprisings.
THE CATHEDRAL OF SAN LORENZO
The cathedral was built in baroque style by the order of the Cardinal Giulio Roma who was the bishop of Tivoli from 1634 to 1652.
FOOD IN TIVOLI
Around Piazza Garibaldi you can find restaurants, pizzerias, and small café where you can take a rest, to eat or to enjoy an espresso.
Of course the place is purely touristic, but you’ll definitely find very remarkable restaurants for food or just a drink.
A WALK TO TIVOLI
For the end I propose a walk through the narrow alleys of the old city. The stone imposed houses, the wooden doors, the balconies and galleries will impress you. Do walk in the narrow routes, travel back in time…and allow Tivoli to enchant you!