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Borghese Gallery

  • Rome, Lazio, Italy

Last updated: 07 April, 2024

Galleria Borghese, in the lovely surroundings of the landscaped Villa Borghese gardens, houses the magnificent art collection of the extraordinarily wealthy, art-mad Borghese family – one of whom married Napoleon’s favourite sister, Paolina.

Described as the finest non-royal private art collection in the world, it houses treasures such as Antonella da Messina’s Portrait of a Man, Correggio’s Danae, Antonio Canova’s sculpture of Paolina Borghese, Bernini’s astonishingly depiction of flesh in The Rape of Proserpina, and Titian’s Sacred and Profane Love.

While you’re there

A theatrical masterpiece, the Spanish Steps were designed by Francesco de Sanctis in 1725 and paid for by the French. At the top is Villa Borghese; at the bottom lie the boat-shaped Fontana della Barcaccia (designed by Bernini’s dad).

Logistics

Price from: £11
Minimum age: 0
Age suitable: 18+
When: All year around

Getting there & doing it

The nearest metro is Piazza di Spagna; the route is signposted through the gardens. Admission is strictly limited to 360 people every two hours. It means you have to book ahead and don’t have endless time to ponder the masterpieces, but it reduces overcrowding (and queues) so you can enjoy the art without jostling for position.

The gallery offers guided tours in English on Saturday and Sunday (booking is required). Alternatively, a number of operators offer third-party tours. Audio guides are available in Italian, English, French, Spanish and German.

When to do it

The gallery is open all year round, Tuesday to Sunday. Closed Monday.

Who to go with: organised tours

11

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