Hotel Eden Roma_Ponte Sant'Angelo_Shutterstock_Blue Planet Studio HEADER
Art and culture

Rome’s most beautiful bridges

September 10, 2021

The Tiber winds and twists from its source in the Appenines right through Rome’s historic centre. The river plays a pivotal role in city life and is traversed by magnificent bridges, which act as a mirror to the city’s history.
Ponte Fabricio with trees and bridge in Rome

Ponte Fabricio

Ponte Fabricio dates back to 62 BC and connects the diminutive Tiber Island to the left bank of the Tiber. It’s extremely well preserved and the oldest bridge still in use. Four inscriptions on its arches recall its builder Lucius Fabricius. A smaller inscription refers to Marcus Lollius, who ordered restorations in the first century BC following two great floods. The bridge has been touched up numerous times since; in 1447 Pope Eugene IV had it paved with travertine slabs, and in 1679 Innocent XI consolidated its structure and rebuilt the parapets. Decorated with a pair of four-headed marble herms, which were taken from the nearby Church of St. Gregory in the 14th century, it is popularly known as the Bridge of the Four Heads.

Ponte Sant’Angelo

Built by Emperor Aelius Hadrian in 136 AD to connect the city with the entrance to his mausoleum, Ponte Sant’Angelo used to be known as the Aelian Bridge and is today the best spot for enjoying a view of Castel Sant’Angelo. At the end of the bridge lie two impressive statues of Saints Peter and Paul, placed there by Pope Clement VII in the 16th century. The bridge is faced with beautiful travertine marble and decorated with ten statues of angels, which tell the story of Christ’s suffering. These were designed by Gian Lorenzo Bernini and mounted in 1688.

Hotel Eden Rome near Ponte Sant Angelo
View of Milvio bridge in Rome

Ponte Milvio

Ponte Milvio offers striking views of the Olympic stadium in one direction and of the Ponte Flaminio in the other, and links the neighbourhood of Ponte Milvio to Flaminio — home to some of the city’s most iconic sites, including the MAXXI museum. Built by Gaius Claudius Nero, a Roman consul, in the second century BC, Ponte Milvio was incredibly important both economically and strategically. Censor Marcus Aemilius Scaurus built a new stone bridge in the same location in 109 BC and demolished the old one. Beloved by the Romans who call it ‘Lover’s Bridge’, it was also the setting for Emperor Constantine’s dramatic conversion to Christianity, which changed the course of the western world. It has undergone many repairs throughout history, having been severely damaged in 1850 by Giuseppe Garibaldi’s army and  was later repaired by Pope Pius IX, being revered by Catholics, in 1850.

Ponte della Musica

The impressive Ponte della Musica links the Della Vittoria and Flaminio districts and was inaugurated in May 2012. This elegant 200m/656ft steel and concrete bridge, designed as an open public space and used for festivals, exhibitions and fairs. Designed by British engineering firm Buro Happold, it is the first large-scale public footbridge to cross the Tiber since Roman times. Staircases lead down to the lower riverbanks, with the surrounding areas on both sides serving as a public area.

Hotel Eden Roma_Ponte della Musica © Shutterstock_ ste77
Hotel Eden Roma_Ponte Vittorio Emanuele II © Shutterstock_ vlahuta

Ponte Vittorio Emanuele II

Designed by architect Ennio De Rossi in 1886, Ponte Vittorio Emanuele II was inaugurated in 1911 and connects the historic centre of Rome with the rione Borgo and the Vatican City. Tall plinths with huge bronze-winged Victories hover at either end of the bridge. One of them holds a bouquet of flowers in one hand and a broken chain in the other, as a symbolic tribute to King Victor Emmanuel II, who unified Italy in 1859.

Rome’s beautiful bridges are within striking distance of Hotel Eden, the perfect base to explore the Eternal City’s celebrated sights and ancient landmarks.

Back to Dorchester Collection Moments
Art and culture
More like this
Collect issue 28

Collect Magazine

View the latest issue of Collect, our bi-annual magazine featuring a curated mix of culture, art and lifestyle, together with the latest news from Dorchester Collection hotels.