Romantic Rome and the sunset over the Eternal City from the suggestive Terrace of the Gianicolo: a show for lovers
On the Roman stage, not only imposing archaeological structures that reveal all the charm and splendour of the Eternal City are protagonists, but also the geological structure and in particular the hills, which allow the vision of spectacular panoramas and sunsets of the city.
La Terrazza del Gianicolo: aperitifs with a breathtaking view, jazz and disco
Romantic Rome is a unique spectacle for lovers, seeing the breathtaking sunset that surrounds the Eternal City from the suggestive Gianicolo Terrace, is like admiring a work of art, a painting painted by God in person. La Terrazza del Gianicolo is a trendy place with modern design furniture, where you can have fun and spend a pleasant romantic evening, enjoying an aperitif and admiring Rome at your feet. If you want to surprise your partner and lead them under the stars in the sky of the Italian capital for a magic evening, accompanied by the sound of music, cocktails and great food, this is the right place. Every day a different event is planned: jazz, vintage and contemporary disco music, dinners with succulent dishes of excellent quality and an enchanting panorama of the wonders of the ancient city below you and the infinity of the stars above you.
Gianicolo: the second highest hill in Rome
The Gianicolo is the second highest hill in Rome, second only to Monte Mario, it is situated west of the Tiber and although it does not figure among the seven Roman hills because it isn't within the boundaries of the ancient part of the city; it offers an incredible panoramic show, where you can also admire the river meandering through the walls of the Eternal City. From this position, the panoramic view of the centre of Rome is full of archaeological sites, churches, basilicas with their domes and bell towers. Other attractions on the Gianicolo include San Pietro in Montorio, one of the most important churches in the Trastevere district, once thought to be the site of the crucifixion of St. Peter; the place where the saint is presumed to be dead is a small sanctuary known as the Tempietto, designed by Donato Bramante.
But the Gianicolo hill is not only panoramas, it actually is an important historical-archaeological settlement and you can also admire the Baroque fountain built by Pope Paul V at the end of the seventeenth century, known as the Fontana dell'Acqua Paola. There are also various foreign research institutes, including the American Academy and the Spanish Academy. This is also the place of the Pontifical Urban University and of the Pontifical North American College. If you want to spend some time immersed in greenery, the Sapienza University Botanical Garden is the ideal meadow for a romantic picnic. Finally, you can pay a visit to the Villa Lante at the Gianicolo of Giulio Romano, an ancient building of the sixteenth century, built by the Mannerist master, which includes a magnificent view from which to admire the infinite of the Capital, among romantic dreams of eternal joy.
Romanticism, ancient history and mythology of the Gianicolo
The Gianicolo was a centre for the worship of the god Janus: its position overlooking the city made it a good place to observe the stars. In Roman mythology, Gianicolo was the name of an ancient city founded by the god Janus (the two-faced god). In book VIII of Virgil's Aeneid (Publius Vergilius Maro), King Evander showed Enea (the Trojan hero of this epic poem) the ruins of Saturnia and Gianicolo on the Capitoline Hill near the Arcadian city of Pallanteum (the future site of Rome). Virgil used these ruins to emphasize the symbolism of the Capitol as the religious centre of Rome.
According to Livy, the Gianicolo was incorporated into ancient Rome at the time of King Anco Marzio to prevent an enemy from occupying it. It was fortified by a wall and a bridge over the Tiber was built to join it to the rest of the city. During the war between Rome and Clusium in 508 BC, it is said the forces of Lars Porsena occupied the Gianicolo and besieged Rome. From there, you can also admire the mills. The Aurelian Walls were extended up the hill by the emperor Aurelian (he reigned in the period of 270-275 AD) to include the water mills used to grind the grain in order to provide flour for bread to the city. The mills were fed by an aqueduct, where the water fell down a steep hill, were used above all in 537 AD, when the Goths who besieged the city interrupted the water supply. They were later restored and probably remained in operation at least until the time of Pope Gregory IV (827-844).
The monuments dedicated to Garibaldi and the cannon shot
The Gianicolo is the site where a battle took place in 1849, fought by Garibaldi's forces and numerous monuments dedicated to those who died in the wars of Italian independence are on the Gianicolo. Every day at noon, a cannon shoots once from the Gianicolo towards the Tiber as a time signal. This tradition dates back to December 1847, when the cannon of Castel Sant'Angelo gave the signal to the surrounding bell towers at noon. In 1904, the ritual was transferred to the Gianicolo and continued until 1939. On April 21st, 1959, the popular appeal convinced the Municipality of Rome to resume the tradition after a twenty-year interruption.
Panoramas and monuments of the Gianicolo
The top of the Gianicolo is dominated by the equestrian monument dedicated to Garibaldi in 1895, designed by the Italian sculptor Emilio Gallori. This site was chosen for its proximity to Villa Doria Pamphili, where Garibaldi set a military defense of the short Roman Republic at the end of April 1849. The hill also features a series of statues and monuments of eminent Italian historical figures. A 2011 guide published by the local Amilcare Cipriani Association group, after a long restoration of these monuments, lists a total of 84 busts on the hill.
Spending a romantic day on the Gianicolo hill is a unique experience to seal your love between history, archaeology, architecture and the overall view of ancient Rome that is intertwined with the modern one: after all, if you write the name of the city at otherwise, the word Amor comes up.