Campania Trip: Reggia di Caserta (Garden)

As I was staying in Caserta (actually Marcianise, but that’s details) for about a week, it would be pretty dumb not to go see The Royal Palace of Caserta, since it was right there, and not too expensive to get in. In Italian it’s called Reggia and it is actually the largest royal residence in the world.

reggia di caserta
Inside of the Reggia.

Inside there are many cavernous halls, a lot of them empty, but I suppose that makes it easier to focus on architecture. Which definitely deserves the focus, I especially enjoyed the pinkish stone of the hall/staircase pictured above. Fabrizia and I also stumbled upon a strange alcove, which had metal bars over the opening and a little bench inside. We had no idea what was the purpose of that little room, so we asked a guide, and he explained it was an elevator! That was cool to discover, especially since it wasn’t immediately obvious what it was.

Inside the Reggia there was also a modern art exhibition, which I didn’t expect at all, so I was doubly excited to find it. They even had a few Keith Haring and Cy Twombly pieces, whose work I had never seen before in person. I am sure other notable artists were also featured, but I didn’t recognize any, since I am not exactly an art connoisseur.

path to reggia
View of Reggia in the distance.

I do have to say that other than the above mentioned, I wasn’t especially impressed with the interior, especially the lavishly furnished rooms that border on grotesque (I always appreciate the library/office though – it’s just what I am all about). When you see more of these kind of palaces, they kind of start repeating themselves (for example in France, Russia). This comes from an extremely privileged point of view, but I would be lying to deny it. If you enjoy the style of the era, I guess it’s probably more enjoyable, but it’s not really my cup of tea.

Anyway, the title also says “Garden”, so let’s move on to that part. On the back side of the Reggia, there is a long straight double path that gradually rises, and finally reaches an impressive fountain. The fountain includes small cascades, which look like a weird sculpture from a distance, if you don’t know what you are looking at. Since the path is pretty long to walk, and we wanted to see The English Garden, which is a botanical garden located at the end of the path, Fabrizia and I decided to “splurge” for the van, which took us to the top.

girl at reggia
Fabrizia in front of the fountain.
reggia fountain
Fountain at the other end of the path.

I wasn’t expecting anything in particular, but I have to tell you the garden was LOVELY. It was enormous – you can easily spend a few hours walking around. The weather was bordering on rain, so it wasn’t too hot, and it was very peaceful, since not many visitors make it up there. You can’t help but feel relaxed.

english garden caserta
Really big trees.
reggia pond
Small pond at the English Garden.

The garden is on a slope, with the gate at the top, so we decided to walk along the winding paths to the bottom and then up on the other side to the exit, to see as many different things as possible.

girl blows a flower
Playing with some plants.

On the way back however, we stumbled upon a greenhouse! Now, you might not be aware, but I fucking love greenhouses. Especially old, slightly decrepit and abandoned-looking ones, just like this one was. The doors were locked, but some of the windows were open, so we could peak inside.

red flower
Peak through the greenhouse window.
old greenhouse
Some greenery trying to free itself.

Unfortunately we had to go soon, since it was nearing closing time, but I would gladly spent the whole day there. So thanks to Fabrizia for showing me this place, I want to come back for sure.





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