Piazza Mattei, 00186 Roma RM, Italy
|⏰ Opening Hours
8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
|💸 Entrance Fee
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What is Fontana delle Tartarughe?
The Fontana delle Tartarughe, or the Turtle Fountain, is a charming and elegant piece of Renaissance art located in the bustling heart of Rome, in the Piazza Mattei. It's a small but exquisite fountain, known for its intricate sculptures of four youths and four turtles, all masterfully executed to create a harmonious blend of natural form and artistic imagination. Designed by the architect Giacomo della Porta and sculpted by Taddeo Landini, the fountain stands as a representative work of its era and continues to draw admiration from visitors and locals alike.
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History of Fontana delle Tartarughe
The history of the Fontana delle Tartarughe is steeped in the rich tapestry of Roman architecture and culture. Commissioned by the Mattei family, a prominent Roman clan, it was completed in the late 16th century and has undergone various restorations to preserve its beauty through the centuries. Interestingly, the turtles we see now were not part of the original design; they were added later by the esteemed sculptor Gian Lorenzo Bernini during a restoration in the 17th century. This addition further enhanced the fountain's allure and solidified its status as a cherished Roman monument.
Why is Fontana delle Tartarughe Important?
Fontana delle Tartarughe isn't just a fountain; it's a testament to the grandeur of the Renaissance period and the enduring legacy of Roman artistic prowess. It symbolizes the union of functionality and aesthetic appeal—providing fresh water to the citizens of Rome while simultaneously offering a visual treat. The fountain also portrays the cultural significance of the Mattei family and their impact on Rome's urban development. Its continued importance is marked by the way it seamlessly integrates into the social and historical fabric of the city, becoming an indelible part of Rome's identity.
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Things to Do & See at Fontana delle Tartarughe
Visiting the Fontana delle Tartarughe, you'll find it's not just a quick stop; it's an experience that invites contemplation. Take a closer look at the playful expressions of the youths and the smooth texture of the turtles—symbolic nuances that are easily missed at first glance. Embrace the ambiance of Piazza Mattei, often filled with the lively chatter of locals. For a deeper appreciation, visit in the evening when the lighting adds a whole new dimension to the fountain's elegance. And don't forget to indulge in the surrounding trattorias and gelaterias for an authentic Roman treat!
As you can tell, the Fontana delle Tartarughe offers more than meets the eye. If you're intrigued, why not go on a guided tour to unravel more stories and hidden details? After all, there's always something new to discover in Rome, especially when you have a keen eye and a curious mind ready to delve into its countless historical layers.