Bring enough food for the locals!!
If you have been to Italy then you have surely noticed the abundance of cats EVERYWHERE. Tivoli is no different and I snapped this little ditty of my allergy-prone boyfriend as he sat down and attempted to have something to eat at Villa d'Este. He was sneezing all afternoon!! I will never forget this scene and it had me giggling for the rest of the day...
So, moral of the story is I guess if you are not allergy prone, be nice to the locals and make sure to pack some milk!!
Villa d'Este was built in the 1550s for Cardinal Hippolyte d'Este.
The villa was a former Benedictine convent and the rooms were decorated and frescoed. But Villa d'Este is mainly known for its worldwide famous gardens. These gardens are enriched by many fountains, such as the 'Fountain of the Dragons' and 'the One Hundred Fountains', deep pools shaded by trees, and the 'Water Organ Fountain'.
A romantic setting
There were so many things to see and it was such a romantic setting. You could just imagine all of the royalty coming for parties and gatherings in amongst the fountains and gardens of this stately home. All of this was built without the modern tools we have today and rivers were diverted to make all of the fountains work with out the use of electric pumps. It truly is a wonder and a place of beauty.
Wonderful fossil-rich rock
If you visit the Villa d'Este (as you probably will) take a closer look at some of the stones used for bordering paths in the gardens (and in some walls too).
It's a type of limestone, but is fossil-rich. In fact, it seems to consist almost entirely of prehistoric corals, concreted together by the millennia. Tubes and bubbles and casts abound:entirely wondrous.
I saw it in Rome too, in what remains of the Palatine gardens of the Villa Farnese. I suspect it must have been a popular 'garden feature' in Renaissance times.
Well worth a closer look.
The Great Baths
This was the mens bath complex.
The Romans sure loved their baths - there are several bath complexes at Villa Adriana.
The great circular room probably housed the Turkish bath (sudatio) as no plumbing pipes are present.