Exploring the Renaissance Beauty of Villa d’Este: a Guide to Tivoli’s Iconic Italian Villa

day trip from rome: Villa d'Este Tivoli

Villa d’Este is one of the most beautiful European gardens just 32km from Rome

Well, it’s not exactly Rome. But it’s close enough anyway and certainly worth a trip! For those looking to do a quick day trip from Rome, this is your place. Villa d’Este is a palace located in Tivoli, a town just outside of Rome with a perfect example of Renaissance architecture and resplendent gardens. The gardens at Villa d’Este are so breathtaking that shortly after its creation it became a model for future garden designs throughout Europe. The villa itself is filled with marvellous frescoes and an extravagant array of artwork fit for a king, or a cardinal in this case, as it was actually built by Cardinal Ippolito d’Este in 1550. If you thought the Trevi Fountain was romantic, wait till you get a load of this beauty. But perhaps the most beautiful part of this UNESCO World Heritage site is the exterior with a maze of lush gardens and some 500 fountains running all at once.

Why go on a day trip to Villa d’Este

Go on a day trip to Tivoli to admire a true example of 16th century Italian Renaissance architecture. Just 32km from Rome, Villa D’Este makes for the perfect getaway from Rome. Step inside the villa to immerse yourself in lush gardens with cascading waterfalls and over 500 fountains, famous worldwide. It’s impossible not to fall in love with this spectacle of nature and architecture coming together.

One of the most breathtaking areas of the Tivoli gardens is the famous Viale delle Cento Fontane–a long via that connects the Fontana dell’Ovato to the Fontana della Rometta. As the name recalls, Viale delle Cento Fontane is a viale made up of 100 fountains, developed on three different levels, formed by lilies, eagles and obelisks, symbolizing the Este family.

While Villa D’Este is mainly famous for its fountains and garden, inside the villa is remarkable, too. All the rooms are beautifully decorated with frescoes painted on the walls and ceilings. The entire villa was commissioned by Cardinal Ippolito II d’Este, son of Lucrezia Borgia. The complex is the work of the incessant work of the architect Pirro Ligorio who took 20 years to complete this impressive work.

Piazza Trento 5, Tivoli, Lazio, Italia


Piazza Trento, 5 – Tivoli

How to get there

Train to Tivoli (1 ¼ hrs)



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