One of the most well kept villas in Rome is on Colle del Celio. The entrance is from Piazza della Navicella. In 1553 the Mattei family bought the vineyards which covered the sides of the hill to build a villa. The garden is embellished by old marble, bas-reliefs, palms, exotics plants and even an obelisk. It became a stop for pilgrims who visited the seven Churches. A considerable number of the sculptures which embellished the villa were sold and formed the first collection batch of the Vatican Museums. The Municipality took over tghe ownership in the 19th century and opened it to the public in 1928.
Address: P.zza della Navicella