A beautiful space named for its plentiful citrus trees, with fantastic views and important Dominican history.
Adults: 4 Children: 0
Why not pack a picnic!
Oranges and monks
The Garden of Oranges, also known as the Parco Savello, is a luscious garden complex situated in the heart of ancient Rome on Aventine Hill. Its origins date from the early 12th century BC when, according to tradition, St. Dominic planted the first orange tree there which he had brought as sapling and nurtured all the way from Spain to Rome. There are now dozens of orange trees here in honour of the saint. According to another legend St. Catherine picked an orange from that very tree and made candy from it for Pope Urban VI.
Dominic had made the journey to Rome in order to get permission from the Pope to found his Order of Preachers, now called the Dominican Order, which was the first Christian order with an academic mission. Permission was granted and in 1216 the Order was given the ancient Basilica of Santa Sabina, located in front of the park and still visited by many tourists today. You can also see the monastery that the monks took over as their residence, which had previously been the Savelli Castle since the tenth century.
Besides Dominic, other notable saints have been residents of the monastery, including Thomas Aquinas and Pope Pius V. Today it is a peaceful and relaxing space for families or couples to go to sit and enjoy the views, the fragrant blossoms and the artistry in the layout and design of the garden, including an eye-catching fountain of the god Oceanus by Giacomo della Porta. It can be reached by heading south on the Via Santa Sabina near the Circo Massimo Metro stop. A very enjoyable way to spend an hour.