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Art and history courses through Rome’s veins like few other cities in the world. Nestled amidst the beautiful Villa Borghese Gardens is a museum home to centuries worth of treasured art -- the Borghese Gallery. Housed within a stunning 17th Century estate is a priceless collection of masterpieces by once-in-a-generation names like Bernini, Raphael, Titian, and Caravaggio. The artwork at the Borghese Gallery was once the sole collection of Cardinal Scipione Borghese, an avid art collector. Today, it is one of the most-visited attractions in Rome. Book Borghese Gallery tickets to be part of an eye-opening art experience.
The Borghese Gallery is quite a famous museum in Rome and always sees large crowds. To save time, book Borghese Gallery skip-the-line tickets. These allow you to bypass the long waiting lines and get priority access to the gallery. You can access all major parts of the museum, including the Villa Borghese Gardens, with these tickets.
The best way to learn about the history and artwork at the Borghese Gallery is by opting for guided tours. Your Borghese Gallery tour would include a small 15-member group and the services of a professional English-speaking local guide who will narrate interesting facts about the museum's history and all of its famed artwork. Your ticket also includes entry to the Villa Borghese Gardens.
EU citizens between the age of 18-25 get reduced pricing on their tickets on presentation of a valid government ID.
You can purchase an audio guide for €5 at the Borghese Gallery
What started out as the private collection of a prominent cardinal, the Borghese Gallery today is a beautiful public museum for art lovers. Soak in the blood, sweat and tears of some of the greatest artists to have ever lived, like Bernini, Caravaggio and Raphael. Here are some of the top highlights at Borghese Gallery.
Bernini’s Apollo and Daphne is arguably one of the most beautiful sculptures at the Borghese Gallery. It depicts the tragic tale of the God of Archery, Apollo, and the Nymph, Daphne. Hit by cupid’s arrow, Apollo falls in love and chases after Daphne, only to have her transform into a tree just before he catches her. Despite its stationary form, the sculpture marvelously captures movement and fluidity; once can notice Daphne’s gradual transformation from human to tree, where Bernini has left some parts of her as a woman, while others that seem to show the bark of a tree gradually wrapping itself around her.
It’s ironic that one of Bernini’s most celebrated works of art, depicts tragedy. At the age of 23, through dramatic fashion and marble, he portrayed the tragic abduction of Proserpina at the hands of the god, Pluto. This sculpture is about 7.5 feet in height and is made from a unique Carerra marble that seems to imbibe the appearance of softness. Influenced by classic Baroque style, Bernini’s sculpture depicts life-like motion of flesh. This can be clearly seen in the delicate details; whether it’s Pluto’s hands sinking into Proserpina’s soft flesh, the anguish on her face, or his tense muscles as he attempts to overpower her.
The first thing one notices about Raphael’s Young Woman with a Unicorn painting is the subject’s eyes: a piercing blue with a stoic expression. Art history experts have debated the young woman’s true identity over the centuries, with several theories propping up, but no clear answer. They have also drawn comparisons between this painting and Da Vinci’s Mona Lisa -- the former was painted just a short while after the Mona Lisa. Raphael’s work, drawing inspiration from Da Vinci, portrays the subject in a similar pose, with folded hands, a slight angle and a vivid background. Observe the unicorn, which was considered to be a symbol of women’s purity.
While the Borghese Gallery is home to a myriad of Caravaggio’s artwork, perhaps his most personal masterpiece deserves maximum attention. While on the run after being charged with murder, Caravaggio painted what experts have dubbed as a self-portrait. Goliath’s severed head is understood to be his own, with David being the executioner. This painting shows the maturity of Raphael as an artist; observe the dark, earthy background, as a bright contrast to the luminous figure of a youthful and determined David. The older, weaker Goliath portrays despair, with the marks of blood and lifeless eyes, seemingly conveying a damned Caravaggio.
In the heart of the city lie the ornamental Villa Borghese Gardens, amidst which the Borghese Gallery resides. Back during the 1600s, the Cardinal thought to convert his vineyards into sprawling gardens. These lush gardens were eventually remade to suit English tastes and then converted into a public space in 1903. The gardens themselves are located atop Pincian Hill, from where one can look over the bustling Piazza del Popolo. The extensive landscape of the Villa Borghese Gardens is home to a variety of species of flora and fauna. The Borghese Garden is one of the largest public parks in Rome, with more than 90 unique points of interest, including historic statues and monuments. There’s plenty to see here, like the Bioparco Di Roma Zoo, Villa Medici and the National Gallery of Modern and Contemporary Art.
Borghese Gallery hours are from 09:00 AM to 07:00 PM from Tuesday to Sunday with final admission at 05:00 PM. It is closed on Mondays.
It should take about two hours to cover most of the attractions at the Borghese Gallery.
You can visit the Borghese Gallery at any time. However, if you’re looking for smaller crowds, it’s best to visit early morning or late evening, and during the off-season in the year.
The Borghese Gallery is located at Piazzale Scipione Borghese, 5, 00197 Roma RM, Italy.
Google Map Directions.
Yes, you can take the bus to get to the Borghese Gallery. Get off at Pinciana/Museo Borghese stop. From here, the gallery is within a 5-minute walking distance.
Yes, you can take the train to get to the Borghese Gallery. Alight at either Piazza di Spagna or Barberini station. From here, the Borghese Gallery is at a 20-minute walking distance.
Yes. Photography is permitted; however, please do not use flash.
Yes. At the Borghese Gallery bookshop, you can get guidebooks in multiple languages, along with other literature like pamphlets, posters, souvenirs, art publications and more.
Yes. You can store large bags, baby strollers and umbrellas at the cloakroom. Guests are advised to carry small purses or backpacks.
Yes. Those with physical disabilities can comfortably visit the Borghese Gallery. Wheelchairs are also available on-site for rent.
The easiest way to get to the Borghese Gallery is by going through the Villa Borghese Gardens entrance. In total, the gallery has 9 different entrances: Via Raimondi (2 entrances), Via Pinciana (2 entrances), Piazzale Pablo Picasso (via di Valle Giulia), Piazzale Flaminio, Via Aldrovandi, Piazzale Cervantes, Piazzale San Paolo del Brasile. Get other great Borghese Gallery tips here.
Guests are advised to pre-book their tickets online in advance as only 80 visitors are allowed entry every two hours; otherwise, you run the risk of being turned away due to a lack of availability of free slots.
Yes, dining options are available in and around the museum. Inside, you can dine at the Vivi Bistrot, while within the gardens, you can eat at Pic Nic-That’s Amir cafe or Pizzeria San Marco.
Yes. You can book your Borghese Gallery tickets online now. They permit 80 visitors in 2-hour slots now, so make sure to pre-book your tickets online.
Yes. Borghese Gallery tickets include skip-the-line access, allowing you to bypass the long waiting lines.
It depends on the ticket you book; you would have to specifically book Borghese Gallery tickets that include guided tours. With these tickets, you’ll be accompanied by a professional English-speaking guide through your tour.
It depends on the Borghese Gallery ticket you choose to book. While some tickets offer a full refund on canceling within a stipulated time period, for others there may be no refund available on cancelation. Please check before you make your reservation.
Borghese Gallery hours are 09:00 AM to 07:00 PM from Tuesday to Sunday, with final entry at 05:00 PM. It is closed on the weekends.
There are five time slots available daily start from 9:00 AM. The 11:00 AM time slot is the most popular and the 3:00 PM and 5:00 PM slots witness the smallest crowds. We recommend booking your tickets a week in advance to ensure you get your desired time slot.
No, access to the Villa Borghese gardens is completely free of charge.
You can take the bus or the train to get to the Borghese Gallery. If you take the bus, alight at Pinciana/Museo Borghese stop and walk to the gallery; if you take the train, you can get off at either Barberini or Piazza di Spagna stations and walk to the gallery.