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Tickets for Borghese Gallery Small-Group Guided Tour

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Overview

Highlights

  • It's hard to pick a favorite work of art here, but Bernini's David sculpture is remarkable. Unlike Michelangelo's stoic static David, Bernini's version is lithe, coiled, focused, in the thick of his battle with Goliath. Titian's painting Sacred and Profane Love is another winner
  • Entry is limited to two hours, so seeing it with a guide means you can make the most of your limited time with this collection of masterpieces by Bernini, Canova, Caravaggio and more
  • The whole Villa Borghese is actually an elegant city park, and your guide will lead you through the beautiful gardens, lawns, fountains, and monuments on the second half of the tour

Description

Built between 1609 and 1613, Galleria Borghese houses one of the world's best collections of art. That's not hyperbole: sculptures by Bernini, paintings, by Caravaggio and Raphael and Titian... the list goes on. There's no better way to appreciate it than with a guide, bringing the masterpieces – and the story of their collection – to life.

If gargantuan museums like the Vatican and Louvre give you museum fatigue, you'll love your experience at the Galleria Borghese. Visits here come in two-hour slots, and are limited to 360 people at a time. So it gets busy, but not sardine-full.

Some of the many highlights include Canova's saucy semi-nude sculpture of Paolina Borghese (sister of Napoleon) casually reclining on a couch. Bernini's David and Apollo and Daphne, showcase the artist's gift for capturing action in stone. There are also many paintings from Renaissance bad-boy Caravaggio, including his Saint Jerome Writing, in which the saint appears to be using a human skull as a paperweight.

Other highlight canvases include Raphael's Deposition and Titian's Sacred and Profane Love. Your allotted time is just two hours, and seeing the collection with a guide will help you make the most of this opportunity; you won't just see the work, you'll come to understand the artists' intentions, and how they came to be in this lavish home.

On the second half of the tour, your guide will lead you through the manicured lawns, fountains, lakes, and monuments of the magical Villa Borghese Gardens. The tour ends with a breathtaking view from the top of the Pincio Terrace.

Ticket

What's included

Skip-the-line entrance to the Borghese Gallery
Expert English-speaking guide
Small groups of 15 people or less
Audio headsets so that you can always hear the guide
Tour of the gardens

Amendment policy

  • Changes are not possible for this ticket

Instructions

  • Meet your guide right in front of the Borghese Gallery on Piazzale del Museo Borghese. The guide will have a sign with the 'City Wonders' company logo
  • Make sure to arrive 15 minutes before your booked timeslot

Venue

How to get there

Borghese Gallery
Piazzale Scipione Borghese, 5, 00197, Rome
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Ratings & reviews

4.9
based on 17 reviews
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15
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j
Nov 16, 2019
Excellent
Very enlightening experience. Our guide was great!
L
Nov 8, 2019
Excellent
This was a true highlight of my month in Italy. I am inexperienced in art, so I wanted some perspective to give me a better understanding of what makes certain works masterpieces. The guide,...
This was a true highlight of my month in Italy. I am inexperienced in art, so I wanted some perspective to give me a better understanding of what makes certain works masterpieces. The guide, Elizabeta, was outstanding: insightful, entertaining, interesting. Her account of the Brogese family explained the eclectic nature of the collection and the design of the palace rooms to accommodate it. Her analysis of the artistic techniques behind the masterpieces -- especially of the Bernini sculptures and the Caravaggio pictures -- allowed me to encounter the works more deeply and meaningfully. And her little funny asides -- like puffing dramatically after climbing the stairwell to the next floor or commenting drily on the bureaucracy of the gallery staff -- added to the fun.
The gallery itself is unique. A palace with decorated rooms holding a thematically unified collection of painting, sculptures or other objects, the Borgese allows only 300 people within a two-hour window. I can see why some guests criticise the time limit: certainly, the gallery goes overboard when it rushes people out ten minutes before the end of the session with loud, insistent, multi-lingual messages. But the system, overall, is a sensible one and does make for a more enjoyable viewing experience compared to, say, battling the crowds to see the Botticelli in the Uffizi.
I highly recommend the tour. And Elizabeta was a magnificent, intelligent, passionate, humorous and engaging guide.
M
Oct 31, 2019
Excellent
Frederica’s art and historical knowledge & perspectives made for a wonderfully informative experience! If only we had had more time to spend with her in seeing all of the museum. It’s a shame that...
Frederica’s art and historical knowledge & perspectives made for a wonderfully informative experience! If only we had had more time to spend with her in seeing all of the museum. It’s a shame that the Borghese severely limits the time of tours. Frederica was rushed to impart all she had before the appointed two hours were up. THANK YOU, Frederica!

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