You may not think of Rome as a green city. However, Rome is actually home to over 20 parks and gardens, from the Vatican Gardens to the Rome’s Orange Garden. Whether you’re looking for a place to enjoy a picnic under one of Rome’s famous “umbrella trees”, or you need a place to let the kids run free, you can find a number of peaceful parks in Rome to enjoy on your Roman holiday. In this post, we’ve narrowed it down to our favorites.
Hey, we sell tours too!
While the information offered here is free, we also sell tours at very reasonable prices. Are you headed to the Italy’s capital city? While you’re figuring our where to stay in Rome , don’t forget to put some thought into what you want to see and do. While you can do it alone, why? We offer several kinds of Rome tours that cover everything from the best local food in Trastevere to the Colosseum Underground.
Aqueduct Park Rome
The aqueduct park in Rome offers a vast space, full of history and scenic locations. Located a half an hour south-east of the Colosseum in Rome, on Rome’s ancient Appian way, the park occupies a whopping 240 ha of land. The “parco degli acquedotti” is named after the ancient Roman aqueducts that populate the space. While other parks in Rome have their own selling points, at the Aqueduct Park in Rome you can literally touch the structures that once carried water into ancient Rome (over 2,000 years ago!)
You might recognize the beautiful park from films like Fellini’s “La Dolce Vita”, or the more modern Oscar-winning film “La Grande Bellezza” (The Great Beauty). We recommend renting a bike and visiting the park for a picnic and to explore. Easily covered by bike, on warm days there are an abundance of places to find some shade under the towering aqueducts. If you’re taking public transport, hop on Bus 188 from the stop located behind the Colosseum (Celio Vibenna), heading in the direction Appia/Villa Dei Quintili. It takes 30 minutes – get off at Appia/Quarto Miglio. This is only a four minute walk from the Via Appia Nuova entrance.
Address: Parco degli Acquedotti
Villa Borghese Gardens
Chances are, you’ve heard about this park before. Accessible from just the top left side of the Spanish Steps, this is the most popular park for Rome’s visitors. If you’re traveling to Rome with kids, the Villa Borghese Gardens contain a number of museums and activities for the kids to enjoy.
Home to the Villa Borghese Gallery, find the incredible private collection from Cardinal Borghese’s family here. Within this museum, find works from sculpture Bernini and paintings from the mercurial painter Caravaggio. In addition, rowboats are available for rent in the Villa Borghese gardens.
Address: Villa Borghese
Villa Doria Pamphili
Out of all the parks in Rome, the Villa Doria Pamphili park takes the prize as the largest landscaped green space in the center of the city. Named after the infamous Doria Pamphili family, who once lived in the beautiful white mansion located inside this park, sits above Rome. Just a two minute walk from the Gianiculum hill viewpoint, where you can enjoy panoramic views of Rome’s stunning cityscape. While you enjoy the scenery, let the kids spot the tortoises that live in the lake. Or, you can sit down for an organic lunch at Vivi Bistrot, located at the south-western section of the park.
Address: Villa Doria Pamphili
Unlike the parks mentioned above, the Vatican Gardens are not a casual park for picnicking. Unlike Rome’s other parks, this magical area is only accessible from inside the Vatican State with a guide and tickets. Among the opulent fountains, immaculately-landscaped flower beds and sculptures, the Pope’s residence is one of the highlights that are found inside the garden and you’ll need a special guided visit in order to enter this luscious green space.
One way of visiting the exclusive gardens is by taking a day trip to visit the Pope’s Summer House in Castel Gandolfo. As part of this Vatican tour, you’ll visit the Sistine chapel early in the morning (before the crowds flood in). Plus, enjoy a guided tour of the Vatican Gardens. Then, climb aboard a train from the Vatican’s private train station and visit the Pope’s Summer Residence. Plus, Lunch is included! Find details here.
Address: Giardini Vaticani
Rome’s Orange Garden
Orange trees line the streets of Rome, but Rome’s Orange Garden has a lot more to offer than that. This picturesque little garden sits on top of the Aventine hill (where you’ll find some prime real estate), and was built on the site of an old castle. The terrace in the orange garden boats some impressive views along the Tiber River, making this a popular spot for wedding photographs. It’s not uncommon for people to visit one of the Basilicas on the hill and witness a wedding taking place.
A true romantic location and a popular stop on some of the Rome bike tours, this little gem is growing in popularity in recent years. You can find the Aventine Hill “Giardino degli Aranci” (Orange Garden), a short walk from Circus Maximus. Top Tip: Don’t pick and eat the oranges, they’re so bitter they could turn you off your lunch.
Address: Giardino degli Aranci
Rome Botanical Garden
Although Rome’s Botanical Garden incurs an entrance fee, it’s well-worth a visit. And so, if you’re planning on strolling around Rome’s favorite neighborhood Trastevere, you’re only a two minute walk from this botanical beauty. Located on the west side of the river, visiting Rome’s Botanical Garden is like entering a fairytale. And to top it off, the park is attached to the Palazzo Riario-Corsini. The former home of the colorful Christina Queen of Sweden and Napoleon, in the summer classical music performances are hosted here. Who could ask for more?
Address: Orto Botanico di Roma | Hours: 9a.m.-5:30p.m. (Nov-Feb), 9a.m.-6:30p.m. (Mar-Oct) | Cost: 8€ for adults
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