Villa Farnese in Caprarola Duration: 2 h Share this tour on: The first settlement of Caprarola, approx. 50 km (35 miles) northwest of Rome, dates back to the XI Century, but the village reached the apex of its splendour when cardinal Alessandro Farnese, who was later to become pope Paul III, bought the area to build a fortress there. The pentagonal building, started in 1530 by Antonio Sangallo il Giovane, was accomplished by the pope’s nephew, cardinal Alessandro Juniore, who commissioned Jacopo Barozzi da Vignola with the final design of the palace. It is one of the most precious jewels of Renaissance architecture and one of the most famous monuments in the Tuscia both nationally and internationally speaking. The rooms inside are famed for their Mannierst frescoes by the brothers Taddeo and Federico Zuccari, Antonio Tempesta, Giacomo del Duca, Giovanni De Vecchi and other artists from the 16th Century. The beautiful garden, where you can find the Casino and the small habitable summerhouse, are as impressive as the building itself. All together, the architecture of the villa, that dominates the village of Viterbo, the frescoes and the garden give us a unique idea of the power of the Farnese Family who were one of the most important Italian dynasties.