7 must see parks in Rome

Published by: BouncePosted

Visitors, and even those native to Rome, marvel at the history of the city. From the Trevi Fountain to the incredible Colosseum, the sights in this ancient place keep one busy through exploration from one to the next.

When you get tired of the pale colors of Rome's ancient ruins, you can rest your eyes at any of the parks in the city, boasting colors and vast greenery. Though famous for its fascinating ancient architecture, the Eternal City is one of Europe's greenest cities, and there are parks at every corner.

Whether you're planning a picnic in the park, want to go hiking or cycling, or simply want to sit on a bench and observe the wildlife, the parks in Rome have you covered. And if you need a safe place to store your backpack, picnic basket or heavy shopping bags, bounce luggage storage in Rome has convenient locations all across town. Travel light to make the most of your time discovering Rome's best parks and green spaces.

Villa Doria Pamphilj Park

Perhaps you're looking for a park in the center of Rome where you can stretch your legs after long hours of sightseeing. Perhaps you want to take the family out for a picnic, learn about Rome's history, or simply want to reach your daily steps goal. Villa Doria Pamphili Park on Gianicolo Hill is just the place. The park within the ruins of Rome extends 454 acres, out of which only 232 acres are available to the public. With such a massive surface, the Villa Doria Pamphili Park is the largest landscaped park in Rome, known for its vast lawns, beautiful gardens, its fascinating baroque and neo-Gothic architecture, and iconic umbrella pines.

The expansive park once belonged to the Roman noble Pamphilj family and retains many of its original features, including the 17th-century architecture, the mazes, fountains, and sculptures, all representing elements of significant historical and artistic interest. The highlights of the park are the historic Villa Corsini, Doria Pamphilj Chapel, the Garden of the Theatre, and The Garden of Greenhouses, so make sure to check them all out. Apart from sightseeing and history lessons, people come to this park for various reasons, whether to hike, exercise, picnic, meditate or attend a concert. There is also a playground for the youngest and a natural lake, which is home to diverse flora and fauna, so you can also sit on a bench and observe the wildlife.

When hunger strikes, you can opt to dine at the Vivi Bistrot, the only restaurant within the Villa Doria Pamphilj, or you can walk down to the cafeterias and restaurants nearby.

If you wish to spend a day in nature and hide from the crowds of St. Peter's Basilica, head down to the Vatican Gardens in Vatican City, just a 30-minute ride from Di Trevi fountain and nine minutes from the Sistine Chapel. Dating back to medieval times, the Vatican Gardens are the oldest park in Rome, featuring sculptures, medieval fortifications, fountains, orchards, buildings, and gardens in three different styles that extend across 57 acres of land.

The key points of interest at the Vatican Gardens are the Grotta di Lourdes, the Giardino Quadrato, the Casio Pius IV, the Fontana dell'Aquilone, and the building of the Vatican Radio, among other historic sites. Vatican Museums are located at the edge of the gardens, making it convenient to explore them on the same day. The Vatican Gardens offer a guided tour which makes it easier to navigate the gardens and save time. Since that's the only way to see the Gardens of Vatican City, make sure to book your tickets in advance.

While there are no restaurants within the gardens, there are plenty near the Vatican Museums to the northern entrance of the park. As you plan your trip to the Vatican Gardens, keep in mind the opening hours.

Rose Garden

Rome's Rose Garden, or the Roseto Comunale, is one of the most beautiful parks in Rome, home to around 1,100 species of roses from all around the world. Apart from the hypnotizing scents and colors, the park's location on the slopes of the Aventine Hill, opposite the Palatine Hill, allows for panoramic views of Rome's bell tower of Santa Maria in Cosmedin, Monte Mario observatory, and the dome of the Synagogue and the Vittoriano.

Though small (just 2.4 acres of land), the gardens are a fun way to spend a day, especially if you love floral displays. This hidden gem in Rome is host to the prestigious 100-year-old event "Premio Roma" competition, which takes place on the third Saturday of the month of May. Those who don't want to miss the ruins of Rome would be happy to know that the gardens are located in the heart of what was once Ancient Rome. The gardens were also the site of a Jewish cemetery from 1645 to 1934, after which they were destroyed in the Second World War and rebuilt again in the 1950s.

There are a few restaurants nearby, but not within the park. The beautiful gardens are open daily during the May-June flowering season and for a short period of time in October for the second blooming of the botanic gardens.

Villa Borghese Gardens

Sitting atop Pincian Hill, just a stone's throw from the Spanish Steps and Piazza del Popolo, you'll find the perfect place to fill your lungs with fresh air. Villa Borghese Gardens extend across 197 acres and are the third-largest park in Rome, after Villa Doria Pamphili and Villa Ada. Dating back to 1606 as the property of Cardinal Scipione Borghese, the gardens didn't become a public park until 1903.

This beautiful park in the heart of Rome offers a lot to visitors. Featuring a lush landscape with ponds, trees and gardens, a water clock, iconic monuments like the Tempe of Aesculapius, and a replica of Shakespeare's Globe Theater, the Villa Borghese is everyone's favorite park. Apart from being a large park with lots of green areas, Villa Borghese Gardens is home to Galleria Borghese and a separate art gallery with an exquisite art collection of artists like Caravaggio, Rubens, Raphael, Titan, and more.

There are plenty of tours for the Villa Borghere Gardens, but you can explore the lovely park's grounds on your own too, rent a boat and paddle around the Garden of the Lake, or rent a bike or a cart. Keep in mind that to see more than one attraction at this expansive park, it'll take about 5 hours, so plan your time accordingly. There are many places within the gardens to grab a bite to eat or coffee, or you can bring your own lunch and have a picnic.

Open daily from dawn till dusk, the Villa Borghese is free to the public year-round. The Galleria Borghese, on the other hand, has different hours and requires reservations and tickets.

The Rome Botanical Garden

Rome's Botanical Garden covers an area of 30 acres and half an acre of greenhouses, and it's the perfect relaxation spot in the heart of Rome, between Gianicolo Hill and Villa Farnesina. Walking through the Botanical Garden of Rome, you'll notice a diverse natural landscape filled with palm trees, sequoias, tropical plants, roses, ferns, and bamboo. In fact, the Botanical Garden is home to thousands of species, including nearly 400 specimens of trees and secular plants. Highlights of the lovely garden are the Japanese Garden with Japanese cherry trees, its fascinating pond, the Triton Fountain, and the Fountain of the 11 Spouts.

The park is also dotted with many sculptures and busts dating back to the Roman era. While in the area, you can visit the Butterfly House and the Corsini Palace, both adjacent to the park. There is a bar within the park and plenty of eateries nearby. You can visit the gardens every day year round, filling an afternoon or even a full day with spectacular sights.

Villa Ada Savoia

Stretching around 450 acres, the Villa Ada is one of the largest and most popular parks in Rome, worth visiting any time of the year. Located in the northeastern part of Rome, near the Catacombs of Priscilla and Mausoleo di Santa Costanza, the park offers the perfect escape from the crowded tourist attractions of Rome. There's a lot to do and see in the park, including an artificial lake, a network of paths for hikers and joggers, lawns, woods, and a public swimming pool. The park also features several monuments, an anti-aircraft circular bunker, neoclassical buildings, such as the Swiss Chalet and the Gothic Tower, and many more. At the park, you can rent canoes, bikes, or horses or have a picnic in a shaded area.

Apart from the green spaces and eclectic buildings, Villa Ada is the perfect concert venue, host of the annual World Music Festival Roma Incontra il Mondo and many other concerts during summer. Though it's further away from the city center, there are cafes and restaurants within a short walking distance of the park, but there's also a coffee house at the Casino Pallavicini. Open from dawn till dusk, the Villa Ada Park is free to the public every day of the year.

Giardino degli Aranci

Located on top of the Aventine Hill, in Piazza Pietro D'Illiria, Giardino deli Aranci or the Orange Trees Garden, is one of the best parks in Rome, boasting pretty orange trees and excellent views of the city. Today's urban gardens date back to the 1930s, but in the 12th century, the land belonged to Dominican Friars who planted the first bitter orange tree, which, according to legend, is still preserved in the medieval Church of Santa Sabina, adjacent to the Orange Garden.

With a surface of nearly 2 acres, the Orange Garden is part of the smaller parks of Rome, worth taking a trip to. There's a viewing terrace boasting fascinating 180 degrees views of Rome's skyline, and it's known to be the best sunset spot in Rome. As one of the most romantic parks in Rome, you can bring your date here, pop the big question, or just relax on a sunny day away from the city noise.

Apart from breathtaking scenery, the park features a few historical points of interest, such as a peculiar 16th-century fountain at the entrance. You won't find a lot to do here, as there are no cafes or playgrounds, which means the gardens are the perfect setting for yoga, meditation, or relaxing with a book.

As mentioned above, there are not many cafes and restaurants nearby, but you can find plenty within a few minutes' ride. You can visit the park any day of the year, free of charge.

The best parks in Rome for art, history and nature lovers

Among the ancient ruins of Rome, its fountains and churches, you'll find an abundance of public parks and gardens for a quiet retreat from the city noise. Parks in Rome boast lush landscapes, a network of trails, floral displays, historical monuments, sculptures, and art galleries, so whatever your interest is, you're sure to find it here.

To make the most out of your stay in Rome, make sure to check out our guides on the best hikes in Rome and beaches near Rome. You'll be surprised by the things you can add to your itinerary.

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