Royal Palace of Caserta

A royal palace with no equal, the largest in the world. Built and lived in by the Bourbons, this splendid residence and its Italian-style gardens, along with the San Leucio mill complex, are a UNESCO Heritage site. The Royal Palace of Caserta was a filming location for two episodes of Star Wars and for the film Angels and Demons, based on the book by Dan Brown. The spectacular park features superb fountains such as the Margherita Fountain and two gardens, one in Italian style and one English, connected by an avenue.

The palace was built by Luigi Vanvitelli and commissioned by Charles III of Spain. It was meant to vie with the most famous palace of the period, Versailles, to ordain the greatness of the Kingdom of Naples in Europe. Military exercises were carried out in the large park. These exercises used the Castelluccia, a veritable fortress with watercourses and drawbridges for simulating land battles and the Peschiera Vecchia for naval battles. The Peschiera basin was also where the fish served in the palace were raised.

ArchitectureArtUnesco Heritage

INTERESTING FACTS

  • The Royal Palace of Caserta is connected with the history of the bidet, a typically Italian bathroom fixture. It was the Queen of Naples, Maria Carolina of Austria who desired a bidet in her personal bathroom at the royal palace, despite the fact that, in France, these items had gradually been relegated to rooms in brothels only. The officials of the Kingdom of Italy who were called on to furnish the royal palace described it as “an object of unknown use in the shape of a guitar”.

Tips

  • You can tour the park by carriage or rent bicycles on site.
  • The palace and the park are open every day except Tuesdays.
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