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If 2014 marked the start of free visits to Italian landmarks on the first Sunday of the month, for the city of Rome it meant that 8 city-run museums are now permanently free.
Every day of the year – except when they’re closed of course, i.e. on Mondays – for everyone, with no distinction of age or passport.
As mentioned in the headline they host prehistoric relics, archaeology items, sculptures, memorabilia and contemporary artworks.
Four of them are in the city center: the Giovanni Barracco Museum and the Napoleonic Museum are near Navona square, whereas the Carlo Bilotti Center and the house museum Pietro Canonica are in the middle of Villa Borghese, the largest downtown park.
The Archaeology sites are in the southern part of the city, the prehistory one is in the Nort-east of Rome. The Roman Republic and Garibaldi museum is on the very top of the Janiculum Hill.
The Napoleonic Museum and the Carlo Bilotti center often host exhibitions that have a separate but very reasonable fee: 1,50€.
The city of Rome decided to abolish the entrance ticket to these small-to-medium sized museums so that more people can visit them.
Not far from the Aniene, Rome’s second river, in its north-easter quarter, the brand new museum of Casal De’ Pazzi has got something that no other institution can display in Rome. It is a real prehistory trove with a middle-pleistocenic (200,000 years ago) sediment containing human and animal relics, processed stones and plants for a total of 4,000 items.
Let’s start from the very south of Rome, the Appian way. Maxentius Villa, one of the most evocative archaeological areas in the Roman countryside, encompasses three main buildings – the palace, the circus and the dynastic mausoleum – that celebrate Maxentius, The Roman Emperor who was defeated by Constantine the Great in the Battle of Ponte Milvio in 312 AD.
The Wall Museum is situated inside the S. Sebastiano Gate of the Aurelian Walls and offers visitors an educational tour about ancient Rome’s architecture and military history.
Located in a nice medieval building between Campo de’ Fiori and Navona square the Museo di Scultura Antica Giovanni Barracco offers a crash course of comparative antique sculpture from the Mediterranean Sea and the Middle East. The museum is named after the southern Italian aristocrat who created the collection.
This castle-shaped house museum hosts the workshop and the sculptures of Pietro Canonica, an early 20th century artist who worked in many European courts. On display marbles, bronzes and original models, as well as a large number of sketches, studies and replicas which provide a complete journey through the evolution of this artist’s career.
Created for the 150th anniversary’s of the Italian unification, the museum of the Roman Republic and Garibaldi, is hosted in the S. Pancrazio Gate, on the Janiculum. It tells the story of a revolution that in 1849 got rid of the Papacy but was crushed by French troops and pays homage to our national hero Giuseppe Garibaldi who helped create an unprecedented corner of freedom and democracy in the mid-19th century.
The Napoleonic Museum is much more than a history site. Nested between the Tiber and Navona square, it also features clothes, furniture, maps and other ordinary life objects from the 19th century that belonged to Napoleon and his family.
Named after the Roman collector Carlo Bilotti, this Museum features artwoks by Warhol, de Chirico, Rivers, Severini and Manzù. It is a small venue hosting interesting contemporary art exhibitions. Nice bookshop.
In order to view this article offline and get travel directions to the museums mentioned above you need to download the GPSmyCity Rome Maps and Walks app from the App Store or Google Play. All our posts turned into self-guided walking tours can be found here.