Visiting Rome? Planning on experiencing the Vatican? We have good news! The general public including tourists will be able to access the Pontifical Villas of Castel Gandolfo (considered the “second Vatican” ) in order to visit the Barberini Gardens. Castel Gandolfo is a town located 15 miles (24 kilometres) southeast of Rome in the Lazio region of Italy situated on the Alban Hills overlooking Lake Albano. This is considered the second Vatican because it is also the summer and vacation residence of the Pope. What makes the gardens of Castel Gandolfo so special is that they are the private gardens of the pope that span 30 hectares, which means 300,000 square meters! The Vatican Gardens have been a place of quiet and meditation for the popes for centuries. The gardens at Castel Gandolfo even host agricultural activity with orchards, farms, flowers, animal stables and more. Over the past millennium, the Catholic church and its Popes have been amassing amazing works of art within the gardens. In fact, the pontifical gardens contain endless structures of incredible importance. A visit to the pontifical gardens is an experience not to be missed for those interested in visiting Rome and are looking to experience the Vatican history and sites. If you are interested in visiting the Papal garden grounds, guided tours will be available and general entrance will be permitted to visitors to explore the botanical and architectural wonders of the pontifical residence, known by now as the “second Vatican.”
Interested in learning all about Rome? The best way to experience Rome is with a private guided tour with a local expert. Check out our website or contact us for private tours of Rome and the surrounding areas such as the castles, villas, ancient ruins beyond just the Colosseum and more.