Betsky in Borghese Park

There are two ways to get to the city center from where I reside in Rome. Either by taking the long street towards the Piazza del Poppolo (People’s Square) or by cutting through one of Rome’s most elegant and aristocratic gardens designed back in the early 17th century. The garden is so vast that it has multiple ways of entry. However, I prefer to begin my journey where a pride of bronze lions guard the way to the East entrance of the Villa Borghese. Before I know it, I am surrounded by tall stone pines, arches and obelisks that adorn the main pathway that cuts across the gardens which were once used privately by one of the most powerful and wealthy families in Italy – the Borgias.

After a 40 minute walk I find my way towards one of the most splendid views the park has to offer. Following the main pathway, I slowly begin to reach higher grounds and find myself on a top of the hill surrounded by stone busts of illustrious men. From Pythagoras to Leonardo Da Vinci, these familiar faces accompany me as I walk approach my objective, the grandiose view of Roma.

The panoramic view offers a fresh perspective of the city as the short buildings are tightly packed together and their brick rooftops emanate a bright orange hue which contrasts with the shimmering blue sky. The buildings have many layers that reflect the various historical periods that Rome underwent, making her the capital of antiquity and eternity. In awe I gazed at the distant churches and monuments built from marble that further cool down the city during a humid summer day, like today. In addition, the greenery across the entire city offers a home to various species of parrots that were recently released by the Pope himself. After standing there for a few minutes and absorbing the atmosphere, I take one last breath before I turn around and continue to explore the rest of the meditative gardens of a once thriving bourgeoisie.

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