On Saturday 26th and Sunday 27th September the Galleria Borghese is taking part in the European Heritage Days, the most widely celebrated participatory cultural event in Europe, with a broad program of initiatives connected with the theme chosen this year by the Council of Europe: Heritage and Education – Learning for Life.
On Saturday 26th September the museum will open for two special evening visits at the symbolic price of 1 euro. The visits last 90 minutes, from 7 to 8:30 p.m. and from 8:30 to 10 p.m.
On Sunday 27th September the Secret Gardens (Giardini Segreti) will reopen to the public. Led by volunteers of the FAI, the Italian Heritage Trust, guided tours will take place every 15 minutes, from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Booking – at https://faiprenotazioni.fondoambiente.it/ – is mandatory, provides for a contribution to the FAI, and will be on a first-come-first-served basis. Side entrance to the Gardens on Viale dei Daini – Villa Borghese.
The Aviary Garden (Giardino dell’Uccelliera) and the Sundial Garden (Giardino della Meridiana) were created by Cardinal Scipione Borghese in the early 17th century to endow his noble suburban house – the present Galleria Borghese – with fenced gardens for growing and exhibiting particular varieties of flowers. In effect, the space inside these gardens was divided into sections marked off by small fences in an ornamental geometric design to proudly display – in accordance with a fashion very widespread at the time – rare, precious, and exotic flowers, especially bulbaceous ones and ancient cultivars from the selections of 17th-century florists. In spite of the numerous rearrangements undergone over the years, the Gardens have preserved their original structure. The main showcase for the display of flowers was the Aviary Garden. It takes its name from the monumental birdcages, which are decorated inside with ornithologically themed paintings, stuccowork, and heraldic embellishments of the powerful Borghese dynasty.
On Saturday and Sunday, during the 11-a.m. and 3-p.m. visits, the Galleria Borghese is offering, at no extra charge, Vieni, ti racconto il museo… (Come, I’ll tell you about the museum…), guided tours and itineraries for children and youngsters accompanied by their families, conducted by the museum’s personnel, to discover some of the most representative figures of the Galleria and the fantastic animals that inhabit it. The initiative can accommodate only a limited number of people, on a first-come-first-served basis. Phone 06.32810 to book.
In addition, during the two days the museum is making available, free of charge, for its younger visitors the Little Handbook – downloadable here in Italian and English – in which ten masterpieces are presented with essential content conceived for the family visits.