Built between 1609 and 1613, this opulent structure - fountains, gardens, pink marble walls, frescoed ceilings - seems ideally suited to house one of the world's best collections of art. And that was exactly what it was built for. Architect Flaminio Ponzio designed it for the cardinal and art collector Scipione Borghese, who wanted a party villa on the edge of town where he could house his enormous collection of priceless art. In 1901, the collection (and the gallery, and the park that surrounds it) was acquired by the Italian government, and opened to the public.
As a museum, Galleria Borghese punches well above its weight with an impressive hit rate of masterpieces. Sculptures by Bernini and Canova, paintings, by Caravaggio, Raphael and Titian... the list goes on.
Check ticket availability
Visits are limited to 2 hours and you need to reserve tickets well in advance (several days). Make sure you get there at least 30 minutes before your slot to wait in line to redeem the web ticket and check in all you handbags/backpacks.
Tiqets site was only place that had tickets available for the day we wanted and the price was reasonable (3 Euros above the museum price). Printed out the tickets sent via email and had no problems getting them redeemed at the ticket counter.
Absolutely the best collection I've seen of Bernini sculptures
If you're in Rome I definitely recommend seeing this collection