Tivoli is definitely one of the most interesting sightseeing near Rome.
The ancient town of Tivoli, whose original Latin name was Tibur, is probably older than Rome.
The first settlements were built on the left bank of the river Aniene , because the convenient location on the ford allowed the sheep transhumance between the river Tiber and the Abruzzo region, along the Roman way “Via Valeria”.
The first construction to be built in this area was the Acropolis with other ancient buildings.
Tivoli with all its territory has always enjoyed an excellent climate and the abundance of water allowed , in different periods of history , the erection of large architectural structures.
Ancient Tibur has always been a meeting point for the Sabines and Latins who met to trade.
When Tivoli became a Roman municipality in the first century BC, numerous villas were built for the wealthy Romans.
The most famous Roman villas are: Hadrian's Villa, the sixteenth-century Villa d'Este and Villa Gregoriana.
Until the early Middle Ages, the city preserved its political autonomy; around the year 1200 Tivoli was divided into four districts : Castrovetere , St. Paul, Holy Cross and Trevio.
In 1461 the Rocca Pia was built by Pope Pius II to consolidate the power of the church: the building is a square fortress with four towers on the corners.
In the Baroque period (1635-40) the two largest churches in the town of Tivoli were built: the Cathedral of San Lorenzo and the Church of Jesus, has now disappeared because of aerial bombing in May 1944.
In 1826, the flood of the river Aniene destroyed most of the town of Tivoli. It was on this occasion that it was decided to built majestic spectacular river diversion works .
They built two tunnels under Mount Catillo that formed the large waterfall with a drop of 100 meters that ended in the abyss of Villa Gregoriana. During this period the square called Piazza Rivarola was arranged and the Gregorian Bridge was built, names after the Pope who ordered the river works.