Trastevere, Rome

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  • Trastevere
    by RoscoeGregg
  • The view from Ponte Geribaldi
    The view from Ponte Geribaldi
    by RoscoeGregg
  • Piazza Belli in Trastevere
    Piazza Belli in Trastevere
    by Paisleypaul
  • Maurizioago's Profile Photo

    Santa Maria in Trastevere.

    by Maurizioago Updated Apr 14, 2015

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    It is said it was Saint Callistus who founded a church where this church is located; in 22 A. D.

    The church was rebuilt in the IV century. It was enlarged in the IX century. Then it was rebuilt in the XII century and modified between 1550 and1700.

    Inside you can see various beautiful mosaics. The ones on the apse were made in the XII century. Below them are mosaics scenes depicting the life of the Virgin. These date back to 1291.

    The facade of the church is decorated with 12th - 13th century mosaics.

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    Villa Sciarra, another wonderful park in Rome

    by Jefie Updated Jan 10, 2015

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    Villa Sciarra is located within the Janiculm Walls built by Pope Urban VIII in 1643 around the Janiculum hill to protect the area west of the river. Shortly after the walls were completed, the pope's nephew, Cardinal Antonio Barberini, acquired most of the land located within to build a summer family estate that would be mainly used as a farm, The powerful Colonna di Sciarra family bought the estate in 1811, hence the name given to the villa, but when the family went bankrupt in the 1880s, parts of the estate had to be sold and became a residential area (and a lovely one at that!). George and Henrietta Wurts, an American couple, bought the section of land on which stood the villa itself and spent the next few years turning its gardens into a beautiful park, adding several fountains and nice winding food paths. The couple bequeathed the property to the Italian government (which, at the time, was ruled by Benito Mussolini) under the strict condition that it should become a public park and, luckily, their wishes were respected.

    Villa Sciarra is one of the attractions I had put down as optional when planning my trip to Rome. I figured we'd go time permitting, and I'm sure glad it did because I very much enjoyed walking around this lovely park, which was believed to be a nymph's sanctuary in Ancient Roman times. I take it the nymphs are all gone, but the park they left behind - with a little help from the Wurts - is simply beautiful! I especially enjoyed how it was designed so that each path led to a delightful, secluded corner adorned with some kind of special feature (a fountain, an aviary, a gazebo...). I also enjoyed how we were able to walk along the ramparts and how some sections of the park offered some surprisingly fantastic views of Rome!

    Villa Sciarra is open daily from 9:00 am to sunset and admission is free.

    Fountain of Diane and Endymion at Villa Sciarra Fountain of the Sphinxes at the Villa Sciarra View of the city from the park at Villa Sciarra Baroque wall fountain at Villa Sciarra Hidden building on the grounds of the park
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    Two remarkable churches in Trastevere

    by Jefie Updated Jan 8, 2015

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    I wasn't expecting to find two of Rome's most interesting churches in the Trastevere area, but both Santa Maria in Trastevere and Santa Cecilia in Trastevere are fascinating in their own way. Santa Maria in Trastevere is one of the oldest churches in the city. Built in the 4th century on the site of a former "illegal" Christian house of worship, research indicates that the very first official Christian mass was probably celebrated within its walls. The basilica was almost entirely rebuilt in the 12th century, using columns salvaged from the ruins of the Baths of Caracalla. The beautiful golden mosaics on the facade and on the ceiling of the apse were also added at that time. It's worth dropping a few coins (0.50 Euros, if I remember correctly) to see it all lit up - or, depending on how much time you have to spare, wait until someone else does it!

    The other church that stood out for me, Santa Cecilia in Trastevere, was built on the site where St. Cecilia is believed to have been martyred. After a first failed attempt at scalding her to death, her tormentors tried beheading her by striking her with a sword. She miraculously survived the attack, but died 3 days later. Following her dying wish, a church was built on the site of her house in the 5th century. In 1599, this church was entirely rebuilt and the remarkably well-preserved body of St. Cecilia was exhumed on this occasion so that Stefano Maderno could take a look at it before sculpting his masterpiece "The Martyrdom of Saint Cecilia". The beautiful naturalistic marble statue of the saint's corpse can be found below the main altar, while the body of the saint was buried in the church's crypt. After waiting several minutes for the nun in charge of the crypt to finish her phone call (!), we finally dropped the small access fee on her desk and made our way down below the church, After walking through some ruins (possibly those of the saint's house, although there was very little information available and parts of the site were off limit), we finally reached the beautiful crypt, only to find out we had to look at it through a gate. St. Cecilia is also known as the patroness of musicians, and perhaps for this reason we were treated to a beautiful organ concert before we left the church.

    Stefano Maderno's Mosaics on the ceiling of Santa Maria in Trastever Chruch of Santa Cecilia in Trastevere Piazza in front of Santa Maria in Trastevere Crypt in which the body of St. Cecilia is buried
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    Basilica of Santa Maria in Trastevere

    by von.otter Updated Jan 6, 2015

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    The Basilica of Santa Maria in Trastevere was the first church dedicated to the Blessed Mother, dating from the late third or early the fourth century. One of the first communities of Christians in Rome met here and celebrated mass. Pope Innocent II (1138 –1148) had the church rebuilt in the 12th century.

    Above the church’s portico are three arched windows, and above them is a 12th-century mosaic of the Virgin Mary holding the Christ Child; ten lamp-bearing female attendants are on either side of them.

    This church’s wonderfully simple, simply statuesque Romanesque bell tower, like others throughout the city, is a delight.

    Throughout the church’s interior are some late 13th-century mosaics by Pietro Cavallini recounting scenes from the life of the Blessed Virgin. The best known of these, “The Coronation of the Virgin,” is in the apse. The nave’s 22 granite columns, topped by Ionic capitals, are ancient Roman ruins.

    The basilica is located in the Piazza Santa Maria in Trastevere, the heart of working-class Trastevere.

    This church is very beautiful. When there last, New Year’s Day 2001, the church was ablaze with candlelight. There were a number of people seated quietly in the pews, praying, meditating. The atmosphere was peaceful and harmonious. It’s one of the most vivid memories of this trip to the Eternal City.

    Santa Maria in Trastevere, 1.January.2001 Santa Maria in Trastevere, 1.January.2001 Main Altar, Santa Maria in Trastevere, May 2007 Altar Mosaic, Santa Maria in Trastevere, May, 2007 Altar Mosaic, Santa Maria in Trastevere, May, 2007
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  • Maurizioago's Profile Photo

    Get lost in Trastevere.

    by Maurizioago Updated Jan 1, 2015

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    Trastevere is a district in Rome on the west bank of the Tiber. Its name derives from the Latin word "trans Tiberim" that means beyond the Tiber.

    In Trastevere there are lots of restaurants and cafes; several churches and various shops.

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    Garibaldi Statue

    by brendareed Written Jun 3, 2014

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    At the summit of Janiculum Hill is a wide flat piazza with an imposing equestrian statue of Giuseppe Garibaldi looking towards Vatican City. He is dressed in his unique gaucho style clothing and sits upon his horse. The statue rests on the site where Garibaldi, a well traveled national hero during the reunification, supported the Republic and defended Rome against the French, defeating the outnumbered French army before the siege of Rome and the ultimate truce.

    The statue is 7 meters (23 feet) tall and is surrounded at the base by four bronze sculpture groups based on Garibaldi’s travels and battles: the Charge of Manara’s Bersaglieri (1849 in Rome), the Battle of Calatafimi (1860 in Sicily), Europe, and America. Underneath the sculpture groups is a relief of various clothing and weapons. The piazza is situated above the fortifications of Urban VIII where a canon is brought out daily and a blank fired at noon by a small group of soldiers.

    Garibaldi led a rich and colorful life, traveling to many countries, including the Americas. He was offered a commission in the US Army during the American Civil War, but turned it down. His wife, Anita, was a skilled horsewoman who died during the 1849 retreat from Rome. An equestrian statue of Anita Garibaldi is just down the road from her husband’s memorial on Janiculum Hill.

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    Janiculum Hill

    by brendareed Written Jun 3, 2014

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    On our final morning in Rome, we checked out of our hotel and had a couple hours to spare. Not wanting to waste these precious last moments in this wonderful city, we stored the luggage at the hotel and headed off for a bit more exploration before departing. This morning, we opted to head to the Trastevere side of town, visiting Santa Maria in Trastevere church and walking along the Tiber.

    On our way back to the hotel, we decided to walk through a park that we noticed on our map. The map didn’t show that we would have to walk UP the hill before getting to the park, but once we were there, it was well worth it for the beauty and the views of Rome.

    At the time we had no idea what this place was called. I now know the hill is called Janiculum, named after Janus who founded a city and has a temple in the Forum. Janiculum is not one of the seven hills Rome was built on – odd since it is a pretty good sized hill and in Rome! Nevertheless, it dates back to the Etruscan period and was part of the Aurelian Walls.

    We walked up the pathways from the Trastevere area and proceeded along the road Via Garibaldi passing a convent and some other buildings. Eventually we came to a large flat area that was busy with traffic going around an equestrian statue of Garibaldi. There were many people sitting along the low wall which overlooked Rome. Children were playing on the large piazza – it was a Saturday morning and it seemed to me that these were not tourists but rather the locals enjoying the morning outdoors. Looking below the wall, I saw the canon from which a small group of soldiers fires a blank shot at noon each day.

    We continued our walk from this summit area downwards towards Vatican City, passing another equestrian statue – this one of Garibaldi’s wife Anita. One final look at the wonderful view and I snapped the last of my Rome photos before deciding it was time to head back to the hotel if we wanted to get to the airport in time for our flight. On our way down the steep streets we passed a local hospital before coming back into the more heavily tourist area at St. Peter’s Square.

    The Janiculum Hill was not on our original plan for our holiday in Rome, but I’m glad we found it. It seemed to be a bit of an oasis that was less crowded and more peaceful than other parts of the city. Visit Googlemaps for the exact location of Janiculum Hill.

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    Over The River

    by RoscoeGregg Written Apr 4, 2011

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    I recommend taking an afternoon and evening to cross the Tiber and wander the Tastavere. It is a wonderful area of Rome. ( some do not consider it to be part of Rome)

    There are romantic streets and piazzas. The restaurants are warm, creative and inviting.Here you will find the very best gelato in all of Rome maybe the world at the Fiore Di Luna.

    I highly recommend this area.

    Santa Maria The view from Ponte Geribaldi A Very old Church The Gelato Master takes a break
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    Ponte Rotto

    by mindcrime Written Mar 21, 2011

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    Ponte Rotto is the bridge that connects Trastevere and Forum Boarium on river Tiber. It’s an arch bridge made of stone at 142 BC and had originally 7 spans although in our days you can only see the only one that had left (pics 1-2) and that’s why it’s called ponte rotto (broken bridge in Italian).

    It’s the oldest roman stone bridge of the city (the ancient Pons Aemilius) replacing a wooden one on the same spot. Of course, we couldn’t really spend much time on this site, we couldn’t even walk over this bridge so we just took a picture of our shadows on the bridge (pic 3) :)

    Ponte Rotto Ponte Rotto shadows on Ponte Rotto
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    Basilica di San Grisogono

    by mindcrime Written Mar 21, 2011

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    On our way out of Trastevere we passed from the church San Grisogono(pic 1). It has a nice bell tower that dates back from 12th century although under the church was an older one (probably from 8th century). Pietro Cavalini decorated the interior but what was impressive were the columns (probably from ancient temples) and the mosaic at the floor.

    We crossed the street and we saw Torre degli Anguilara(pic 2), an old tower from medieval era, the only one that can be seen today among the numerous towers that were built. It was part of a house-fortress that belonged to a prominent family of 14th century. The building was bought by the City of Rome in 1887 and it housed a workshop for painted glasses and later turned into hall for lectures on works of Dante Alighieri.

    church San Grisogono Torre degli Anguilara
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    Trastevere

    by mindcrime Written Mar 21, 2011

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    We spend a day in Trastevere, a picturesque old district of Rome at the other side of Tiber with a maze of alleys full of old churches, small stores and a lot of restaurants.

    We crossed ponte Sisto, an old bridge(pic 1) that was built in 1474 by Sisto IV to connect Trastevere with Rome. At piazza Trilusa we got lost in the small alleys but we saw many interesting buildings.

    First we saw (at 23 via Santa Dorothea) the Romanesque church Santa Dorothea(pic 2) that was rebuilt in the 18th century and has a nice baroque facade, and it is dedicated to the virgin martyr St Dorothy(4th century).

    A few steps away is located Santa Maria della Scala (pic 3)that was at the end of 16th century and although boring outside it houses some nice paintings like the Beheading of St John(by G.VHonthorst) and Death of the Virgin(by C.Saraceni). In 19th century the church was used as a hospital for Garibalid’s soldiers that got wounded from the fights against the French.

    Unfortunately, most of the churches in Trastevere were closed, the same happened with Sant’Egidio church(pic 4). It was built in 1632 and it is dedicated to St.Giles, a hermit who died in 720. It’s also dedicated to Our Lady of Carmel and that’s why given to the Discalced Carmelites that had an adjacent convent for the poor. Now, it is a small museum of folk art but it was closed during our visit too :(

    Of course, the most famous church in Trastevere is Santa Maria in Trastevere (pic 5) located at a big square where many young people gather during the evening (they usually sit around the fountain in the middle of the square). The church is open daily 7.30-20.00 and has some beautiful mosaic from 12th century. That was probably the date that the church was built although it was this spot where probably the first Christian masses took place in Rome as the church was founded by Kalistos I during the 3rd century. We couldn’t take pictures of the interior because a mass was in progress but we really loved the atmosphere inside.

    ponte Sisto church Santa Dorothea Santa Maria della Scala Sant���Egidio church Santa Maria in Trastevere
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  • Paisleypaul's Profile Photo

    This statue marks the start of Trastevere.....

    by Paisleypaul Updated Mar 19, 2011

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    Giuseppe Francesco Antonio Maria Gioachino Raimondo Belli (1791 – 1863) was a poet who wrote in the Romanesco dialect. mainly sonnets, of which he produced well over 2000! As a result of using the Roman dialetto, it can be argued that his work is not as accessible as it would otherwise be. Some of the humourous sonnets were translated into English by none other than Anthony Burgess.

    The statue dates from 1913 so will have a centenary soon (at time of writing) viz 2013.
    I always associate it with marking arrival back in Trastevere

    Statue of Giuseppe Belli in Trastevere Statue of Giuseppe Belli from Viale di Trastevere Piazza Belli in Trastevere
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    Trastevere

    by Malecka Updated Feb 3, 2011

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    Tras-tevere, or at the other side of Tevere (Tiberius river), has become a popular spot for a lively night-life. On a warm weekend night the place is absolutely PACKED. Full of bars, cafés, little restaurants, interesting architecture, small houses and some narrow streets... It can be a thrilling experience.

    There are also some amazing shops (two stand out, the all leather bags one, you won't miss it, and the crazy shoes one, you definitely won't miss it, where the shoes made are more pieces of avant-garde art than ... feet-protection.

    You could visit Trastevere during the day, but... I think that late afternoon walk that would turn into a dinner and/or drinks in some of the establishments there is a much better experience.

    If you're visiting the sights around Piazza Bocca della Verita, then Trastevere is really close (ok, close is a relative term, obviously, but it is within walking distance) since you can simply cross Ponte Palatino and you reach one part of Trastevere.

    drinks in trastevere
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    Janiculum (Gianicolo)

    by alza Written Sep 8, 2010

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    This is a hill in Rome which is reached from Trastevere. Panoramic view of Rome and outlying areas from the top, at Piazzale Garibaldi for one.

    From the heart of Trastevere (say, near Ponte Sisto), find via Garibaldi and start climbing along this winding road. The road soon takes the name Passeggiata del Gianicolo (Janiculum Promenade.)
    This is a nice way to spend a Sunday afternoon away from traffic, there are interesting monuments along the way and activities for families at the top (manège, pony rides, puppet theater.)

    The battle for the Roman Republic was fought on the Gianicolo, opposing Garibaldi and his patriots to French forces fighting for the Pope. Monuments to the fallen line the passeggiata. A cannon fires from the Gianicolo at noon every day -- I'm missed it unfortunately since I was reading poems at Dar Poeta at the time.

    The Gianicolo is featured in Respighi's Pines of Rome (mentioned in another tip.)

    The most striking monument I saw there was the Acqua Paola, a huge baroque fountain at the beginning of the promenade. Pope Paul V (a Borghese) restored the ancient Roman Aqueduct "Aqua Traiana" and it's been called "Paola" in his memory ever since.
    This beautiful white fountain was fed by sources of Lake Sabatinus, now known as Lake Bracciano, and that last name is inscribed in the monument.

    Another nice view along the way is beside the The Institutum Romanum Finlandiae (Finnish Institute in Rome.) The building is impressive both for its architecture and its great location.
    NOTE: also excellent panorama from the terrace of the Manfredi Lighthouse, above the church called Chiesa Nuova or Sta Maria in Vallicella. The lighthouse was a gift of Italians from Argentina in 1911.

    The road slowly winds its way down to Lungotevere in Sassia near the Vatican.

    Aqua Paola Monument to Garibaldi View to Colli Albani from Finnish Institute

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    Trastevere 2

    by alza Updated Sep 8, 2010

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    From Bibli, I walked to a small square where I spent some time people watching, taking a few pics, etc. Cafés, gelateria, and a nice church at the heart of it. Families and friends were meeting, everyone in a good "domenica" mood.

    I was at the square by Santa Maria della Scala. The inside of that church is known for its rich baroque design but I wanted to stay outside in the sun so I focussed on the façade as seen from the Gelateria across the square. (Excellent gelato!) (I must admit I was looking for Sta Maria in Trastevere and mistook the Scala place for it awhile...)

    From there to nearby Dar Poeta for a fantastic pizza and some fun reading of poems in Romanesco. The poems are framed on the walls and give the place a real feeling of Rome around 1900 (or so.) Dar Poeta is in a minuscule place along an alley and looked so quiet at first that I wondered if they were open. There were a couple of tables with people obviously regulars, and just the right rhythm of comings and goings. I'll put details under Restaurants. Just mentioning it here as part of that day's itinerary.

    I walked from there to the Janiculum Hill and then for hours, taking my time.

    Arriving Piazza Sta Maria della Scala across from the church My ggranma was a bbeautiful rragazza!

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