This amazing architectural complex at Caserta includes the Royal Palace, its magnificent gardens, the San Leucio complex and the Aqueduct of Vantivelli. The huge palace is a UNESCO’s World Heritage Site.
The construction of the palace started in 1752 in the order of Charles VII of Bourbon, king of Naples. Works on the royal palace and its surroundings were completed in 1780, under the supervision of Vanvitelli’s son, who took over after his father’s death. After completion the palace boasted a total of 1200 rooms, a large royal theater and more than two dozen apartments. The theater had been designed to resemble the theater San Carlo of Naples, one of the most renowned opera houses in the world.
The Palace was built on a rectangular plan that measured 247 meters by 184. The four sides of the complex are connected by orthogonal arms forming four courtyards. Caserta Palace is often thought to be the only architectural complex than can compete, artistically and aesthetically, with Versailles. The two have similarities: both have pavilions opening on their facades and independent, fully functional aqueduct used as the source of all water.
Caserta Royal Palace reflected the Bourbon monarchy’s power. One of the most beautiful rooms in the palace is the Piano Reale, located above the King’s floor. Its grand architecture and its sublime decorations are noteworthy. Within the palace the government offices, a university and a library were built.
There are also the Palace gardens located in the complex completed in a Baroque style and stretched for 120 hectares. The gardens are widely agreed to be much more beautiful than that of Versailles. Starting from the back of the main building, the park stretches along an alley lined with cascading streams and amazing fountains.
More recently due to reputation of one of the most beautiful palaces in Europe, the Royal Palace of Caserta has been featured in various movies including Star Wars I and II and Mission Impossible III.
Location: Via Douhet, 22, 81100, Caserta, Campania
Nearby sights: Duomo di Casertavecchia, Casertavecchia, Belvedere di San Leucio
How to get there: Take train to Caserta
Nearby hotels: Hotel Europa Caserta, Hotel Regina Caserta, Bruman Hotel