Rose Garden Rome

Rome’s Municipal Rose Garden (Roseto Comunale) is located on the Aventine Hill, in the Via di Valle Murcia and apart from (especially while the renowned competition is going on) being an interesting tourist attraction in its own right, it also offers a gorgeous view of a.o. the Palatine Hill and the Circus Maximus. It also hosts the Premio Roma, an extremely prestigious annual rose competition (see below for dates and hours in 2020).

Rose Garden Rome

Address, opening hours and admission

Address: Via di Valle Murcia – 00153 Rome (tel. +39 065746810). Metro: Circo Massimo. Bus: 81, 628 (stop: Circo Massimo-Roseto Comunale). Opening hours 2018: From October 11th till 25th from 08.30 till 18.00 the Rose Garden will be open for the autumn bloom. Admission: Free. Guided tours can be arranged by phone or e-mail: rosetoromacapitale@comune.roma.it. (Handicapped entrance: There is a special entrance at the Clivo dei Publicii, 3.)

History and description

Menorah Shaped Rose Garden
Menorah Shaped Rose Garden

Already in the 3rd century BC the area where the Roseto is located was a place where flowers were grown and through the years it stayed a site of vineyards and flower gardens.

In the year 1645 it became the Garden of the Jews (Orto degli Ebrei) and it remained that way until the year 1934, when the Jewish cemetery was moved to the Verano. For years nothing was done with the land until 1950, when it became the new seat of the rose garden.

The Roseto Comunale, then in the Colle Oppio park, had become Rome’s official Rose Garden in 1932, at the initiative of (Countess) Mary Gailey Senni, who was married to an Italian nobleman. The following year the Premio Roma was organized for the first time.

Roseto Comunale
Roseto Comunale in Rome

When the new Roseto was opened, an obelisk was placed at its entrance, commemorating its former use as a sacred Jewish site. Moreover, the alleys dividing the various sections of the gardens were organized in the shape of the Jewish menorah.

The Roseto has around 1.100 different species of roses on display. The higher, bigger part of the garden contains the permanent collection, while the lower part shows the roses that participated in the Premio Roma.

Via di Valle Murcia – Rome

Torre della Moletta Rome

The Torre della Moletta is a medieval tower on the south side of what is left of the Circus Maximus in Rome. The tower was one of the properties of the Frangipane family. Francis of Assisi is said to have stayed there one day. Since 2017 the tower can be visited together with the excavations of the Circus Maximus.

Torre della Moletta Rome

Address, opening hours and entrance fee

Address: Viale Aventino. The tower stands on the south side of the Circus Maximus behind the fence that protects the excavations. The visit is included in the tour of the excavated part of Circus Maximus. Opening hours: From 9 a.m. to 7.30 p.m. during summer time and from 9.30 a.m. to 4.30 p.m. during winter time. Saturday and Sunday from 9.30 am to 2 pm. Admission: 5 Euro (4 Euro with discount). Metro: Circo Massimo (line B). Bus: 75, 81, 118, 160, 673, N2, N10 (stop: Circo Massimo).

History Torre della Moletta Rome

Torre della Moletta Rome
Torre della Moletta

The Torre della Moletta stands rather desolate between the excavations of the Circus Maximus.

After the Circus Maximus fell into disrepair during the Middle Ages, the site was used for vineyards and vegetable gardens. At that time the district was in the hands of the Frangipane family who had large numbers of humble and dilapidated dwellings built there.

These houses were all demolished between 1932 and 1935. The only structure that remained standing was the tower at one end of the Circus Maximus, which was called Torris in Capite Circi, but usually simply called Torre della Moletta.

In 1223 Francis of Assisi is said to have stayed in the tower. He was a guest of the widow of Graziano Frangipane, with whom he maintained a close friendship.

The name della Moletta is due to the proximity of a water mill. It was set in motion by the Fosso di San Giovanni, a tributary of the Aniene. In 1122 Pope Callixtus II redirected it to the Porta Metronia, the gardens of San Sisto Vecchio, between the Celio and Aventine hills (where now the Via delle Terme di Caracalla runs) and finally to the Circus Maximus. At the Cloaca Maxima it flew into the Tiber.

The tower is square and is slightly wider at the top end. Beneath the broad part there are blind arches, while on the top there are battlements.

Now the tower stands alone, but in the Middle Ages it was part of the Frangipani‘s line of defence near the Palatine. There are no other traces of of this defensive line of towers left.

Excavations

During the excavations around the Torre della Moletta this tower was restored at the same time. A staircase inside the tower leads to the upper floor, where you can enjoy a magnificent view over the Circus Maximus.

Torre della Moletta, Circo Massimo, Rome

Circus Maximus Rome

It is a pity that it is not possible anymore to view Rome‘s Circus Maximus in all its splendor, since it is probably the biggest venue of all time with a width of 140 meters and a length of around 600 meters. The Circus Maximus is best known from the chariot races in the famous film “Ben Hur”. Continue reading “Circus Maximus Rome”

Orange Garden Rome

The Giardino degli Aranci (Orange Garden) is considered to be one of the most beautiful and romantic places in Rome. The official name of this gorgeous garden is Parco Savello, but Romans hardly ever call it by that name. Its biggest attraction, apart from the orange trees, is the magnificent view of the city it offers. Continue reading “Orange Garden Rome”

Santa Sabina all’Aventino Church Rome

The Santa Sabina all’Aventino Church in Rome was founded between 422 and 432 by a priest called Pietro di Illiria. It is considered to be the city‘s best examples of a 5th century Christian basilica. Continue reading “Santa Sabina all’Aventino Church Rome”

Santi Bonifacio and Alessio Church Rome

The Church of the Santi Bonifacio and Alessio is located near the more famous Church of Santa Sabina at the Aventine Hill in Rome. The basilica was probably built between the 3rd and 4th century, but was restored several times. The crypt underneath the church hosts the relics of Thomas Becket. Continue reading “Santi Bonifacio and Alessio Church Rome”

Saint Bartholomew on the Island Church Rome

The Church of Saint Bartholomew on the Island (San Bartolomeo all’Isola, in Italian), is, as the name indicates, located on the Island in the Tiber in the Ripa district of Rome. Continue reading “Saint Bartholomew on the Island Church Rome”

Forum Holitorium Rome

The Forum Olitorium (or Holitorium) was that part of ancient Rome where the vegetable market used to be held. The exact position was a small square between the Theater of Marcellus, the old harbour on the Tiber and the Capitol Hill. Nowadays the registry office of Rome has its seat there. Continue reading “Forum Holitorium Rome”

Ponte Fabricio Rome

The Ponte Fabricio connects the Via di Ponte Quattro Capi on the Isola Tiberina (rione Ripa) to the Lungotevere de’ Cenci in the rione Sant’Angelo and is the oldest Roman bridge still in existence.

Ponte Fabricio Rome

Ponte Fabricio
Ponte Fabricio

It was built in the year 62 BC by Lucius Fabricius, the “caretaker of roads”, as can be read on inscription in red letters on both sides of the bridge’s travertino marble arches. Fabricio’s bridge was made from blocks of tufa, a typical Roman kind of clay, and replaced the original wooden version that had existed since 192 BC.

The Ponte Fabricio has also been known as the Ponte dei Quattro Capi (because of the two marble pillars with the two-faced God Janus) or the Pons Judaeorum (from the time when the Jewish community in Rome was forced to move into what is now known as the Ghetto).

The Pons Fabricius is almost 60m long and almost 6m wide. It consists of two big arches. Two smaller arches close to each bank are now underground and cannot be seen anymore.

Ponte Fabricio – Rome

Ponte Palatino Rome

The Palatine Bridge, also known as the English Bridge (Ponte Inglese), is a bridge that connects the Lungotevere Aventino in the rione Ripa to the Lungotevere Ripa in the Trastevere district.

Ponte Palatino Rome

The decision to build the Ponte Palatino was taken when the so-called Ponte Rotto (“Broken Bridge”) started honoring its nickname a bit too much. It was constructed between the years 1886 and 1890 and is one of Rome’s longer bridges, albeit not one of the more picturesque ones.

On the Palatine side of the bridge, which is called English because its traffic is considered to be going “the wrong way” from a European point of view, the Forum Boarium and the still functioning Cloaca Maxima can be found.

The Ponte Palatino was designed by Angelo Vescovali. It has a length of 155.5 meters and is 18.4 meters wide.

Ponte Palatino – Rome