Like every year the good season brings the opportunity to appreciate the beauty of gardens and natural landscapes. One of the most amazing places where to do so in Italy is, without any doubt the Garden of Ninfa, in Cisterna di Latina, just south of Rome, which this year will be open to the public from March 31st to November 4.

The Garden of Ninfa owes its beauty to the botanical and historical richness that it preserves. Within its eight hectares of land, there are the Ninfa river and several irrigation streams that help quench the thirst of about 1,300 species of plants from different parts of the world. Moreover, the Norma cliff protects the territory from the north winds and creates a favorable micro-climate that allows the growth of exotic plants. Next to the typical Mediterranean flora and magnificent rose gardens, it is possible to admire hickories, Japanese maples, and yuccas. However, such a varied and delicate environment requires great attention and care; for this reason, the garden is open to the public during specific dates and times and it is only accessible by guided tour. Its origins date back to Roman times, when a small temple was built and dedicated to the Naiad nymphs, deities of spring waters, to which it owes the origin of its name; and today it is still possible to walk the path that winds alongside the ruins of the ancient town of Ninfa, which, in the 1800s, was defined as the Pompeii of the Middle Ages.

In 2000, the Garden of Ninfa was declared ‘natural monument’ of the Italian Republic and it is a WWF affiliated oasis. Appreciation of its beauty is so far-reaching that it has previously been the recipient of the title of ‘most beautiful garden in the world’ by the New York Times.

Ilona Catani Scarlett

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