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Today we took the drive up to Tivoli, to see both the Villa D'Este and Hadrian's Villa (he of the wall).
Hadrian first and once again, an absolutely huge site with a great view of both the mountains and the plains, as well as some superb buildings - the Romans really did know how to pick their places.
Hadrian was the emperor in 117AD and the buildings took another 16 years to complete. He enjoyed the arts, culture and ...
... of the water and birds accompany you at every point on the walk. Because of rain runoff of water, it is very lush and quite damp in places. There are walks through the ruins, only the bottom part of the original villa is left. Paths lead up to the top of the main waterfall, others lower down and then going across to the other side and then down to the bottom to see the water plunging right down through the rocks making a thundering noise as ...
... our destination.
We planned to stay the whole day here since it covered 250 acres and we paid 16 euros to get in. Hadrian's Villa was a place full of drinking and constant good times. The villa now is just a bunch of ruins, some more preserved than others. It was not hard to imagine how grandiose the property had been.
We passed under the main wall and found ourselves next to a long pool with some turtles in it and rosemary around ...
... sight to visit. Tivoli is the home of Villa Adriana, or Hadrian's Villa (you know the chap, he who build a wall across the north of England). The villa is situated just a few kilometres from the town and at first as you enter you wonder where you are going. After paying 11€ entry fee, I was more than a little miffed. However, actually when you get inside you have to walk a little way through olive glades and avenues until you get to the complex itself, and it is ...
... http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sistine_C hapel) and the inside of St. Peter's Basilica. Both were beyond beautiful!!
We all decided that it was well worth the heat and the crowds to have had the experience! And that even though there were plenty of tourists in shorts (ugh!!!), it is always better to be safe then sorry.
We came back to the wonderfully air conditioned apartment ...