The Janiculum is the second tallest of the hills in Rome. Being slightly outside the ancient city boundaries and in the west of the Tiber, the Janiculum hill is not among the seven proverbial hills of the city of Rome. The ancient hill was said to be the center for the god Janus cult which was where the name of the hill came from. The location of the hill and the overwhelming views it offers made the people believe that the priests of the cult used to stand on top of the hill to look for auspices.
The top of the Janiculum hill offers a panoramic view of the beautiful city of Rome. The views are great and jaw dropping. The hilltop is a very exciting place that is peaceful and relaxing. The astonishing views of the city from the top of the Janiculum gives tourists a comprehensive view of how the city is structured within its mountainous landscape. The instant view encompasses the Pantheon in the front, the Castel Sant’Angelo on the left side, and the Trastevere in the right side. The gleaming white Monument of Vittorio Emmanuele is very eye catching from the distance. The monument apparently dwarfs its surrounding structures. You might want to test your sighting skills by trying to locate the Colosseum, the Senate house in the Roman Forum and some other iconic buildings of the city.
There are a lot of benches on the top of the Janiculum, where visitors can sit all day long and admire the astonishing vista. You can experience the firing of the cannon at noon on the Janiculum. The tradition of firing the cannon dates back to the mid-nineteenth century with the purpose of making the churches in Rome reset their time correctly. The hill can be accessed from the Vatican, through a series of steps around the Tiber. The steps are however not continuous to the top of the hill. Walking up the hill is a better idea; you will walk up in stages and each level offers a unique view of the city from different perspectives.
Apart from the popular stunning views atop the Janiculum hill, the hill offers some great patriotic monuments and interesting sights which include the lovely Garibaldi Monument, Independence War Memorial, Manfredi Lighthouse, Fontana dell’Acqua Paola, and the Orto Botanico.
You can exit the Janiculum hill into the Orto Botanico, which is just down the hill slopes. The Botanico is a tranquil oasis that is filled with solitary duck with orange feet, elegant shrubberies and Japanese-style water features.