Villa Adriana - Hadrian's Villa - Tivoli, Lazio

Hadrian's Villa at Tivoli

Explore the Cities and Towns of Lazio


Villa Adriana,was built built by Roman Emperor Hadrian at the foot of the Tiburtine Hills between 118 and 138 AD.  Today it is an enormous archeological park which was a made a Unesco World Heritage Site in 1999.  

'Villa', literally translated from Italian to English, literally means 'park-land' and this area was in fact a large 'retreat' or park area that is located a few miles from the town center of what today is Tivoli.  It was created as a summer residence for Hadrian at the foot of the Tiburtine Hills with many natural thermal hot springs which allowed them to create natural hot-tubs and baths with many healing properties the Romans used and Italians continue to use to this day.  Not only this, being at a higher altitude than the lower lying city of Rome, this offered the royals a summer retreat center with much cooler temperatures during the summer months. It was the perfect escape for lavish Roman parties and holidays for the Emperor and and his enormous entourage. 

It is very important to keep in mind when visiting here the enormity of the site, since the residential complex extends over an area of about 120 hectares (about 300 acres).  This was a large Roman city during the summer months and so when visiting here do keep in mind that it take a few hours and those coming here should really consider that it is extremely spread out, even more so than Pompeii as there are many hills and valleys within the park as well as numerous sites to visit. 

For this reason,  in order to get the most out of your visit here, we do recommend you to employ an authorized guide, since the numerous sites include, but are not limited to: baths, temples, barracks, theaters, gardens, fountains and nymphaeums.

The actual house or 'villa' itself was designed on two levels: the upper floor, very simple, quiet and welcoming, was reserved for the official use of Hadrian and the royal family, while the lower floor was noisy and bustled with the work of slaves with the entire facility opening onto the enormous pool and lavish gardens at the center of the court. 

It is fascinating to come and visit this park, though we recommend the following:
  • Visiting with a guide who knows the lay of the land 
  • Booking tickets in advance to avoid closing times 
  • Making sure you have no less than 3 hours to spend here and ideally about 5 hours, since the grounds are enormous 
  • Walking shoes 
  • Water 
  • Snacks 
You will need to be able to easily walk at least 10 km in order to experience the grounds on this private excursion we offer here, so start training today for this is truly a destination in Italy that is filled with incredible insight and secrets of Roman history.

Recently the Villa Adriana, Hadrian's Villa was featured on the BBC's Monty Don's Gardens in Italy series.  Have a look below here;

We can take you into some of Italy's most incredible archeological sites and gardens with local expert guides who can bring the history of these places to life for you.  In addition, we often save you time, money and inconvenience while providing a more educational and enriching experience for travelers who love to learn!

For more information, get in touch with us by emailing us at: or calling to speak to an advisor who specializes in sites of interest on your bucket list in Italy! 






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