Wednesday, May 19, 2010

The Secret Garden

One of the many special things about this particular study abroad program is that we got to see and do things the "average" tourist doesn't get to do - whether they don't have time, don't that the connections, or simply don't know about it. I am pretty sure we did many things that would even make Rick Steves jealous...

One of those things was going to the Ninfa Gardens. Ninfa was an important town going back to the times of the Romans. But, during the Middle Ages the town was taken over by malaria and it was abandoned. In the twentieth century, a member of the aristocratic Caetani family who once owned a Ninfa estate, came back and transformed the town's ruins into a botanical garden. The last owner, Lelia Caetani, left the garden to a foundation who now run the site in conjunction with the WWF. The New York Times defined the gardens as the "most beautiful in the world." Let's see if you agree...

"Kiss of the sun for pardon. Song of the birds for mirth. You're closer to God's heart in a garden than any place else on earth." -Dorothy Frances Gurney

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