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Valsanzibio Gardens

The Barbarigo-Pizzoni Ardemani Garden in Valsanzibio
is one of the most important and refined Italian style Gardens



Amazing world of fountains, pools and landscape architecture welcome the visitors in the greenery of the Euganean Hills. The garden that exists today is the work of the Venetian Antonio Barbarigo who was inspired by his brother, the Cardinal Gregorio (a future Saint). In the middle of the 17th century he enlarged the pre-existing structure to create a monumental path leading from obscurity to light, from ignorance to revelation.


The itinerary starts with the pagan Diana’s Pavillion, in the past there was a water entrance via the Saint Eusebio fishing valley (the name ValSanZibio’s origin), of which at present time the only trace left is a water pond where the façade is reflected.
Entering through the solemn access gate, visitors walk thorough Diana’s Bath, the Rainbow Fountain, (showing a rainbow thorough four spurts of water) and the Wind Fish Pond.


The Pila Fountain takes the visitor to the Main Alley which, with plenty of statues, fountains and water jokes, leads to the Lonze stairs.
Visitors reach in this way the Villa square. Eight allegorical statues stand around the Ecstasy Fountain, the final destination of the symbolic itinerary.
The path is enriched by the famous Boxwood Maze, the Rabbit’s Island and the Statue of Time.

The Gardens
Tel. +39 049 9130042 - Cell 340 0825844


Open to visitors from 10 to 13 hrs and from 14 hrs to sunset, every day from March to November (Sunday and Holidays from 10 to sunset non-stop).


Normal: € 12,00 / Senior (over 65): € 10,00
Adults in group: € 10,00 (20+ persons)
Touring Club, Fai, Terme e Padova Card: € 10,00
Affiliated hotels guests: € 10,00
Boys aged 14 or under: € 6,50
Schools’ groups (mandatory reservation):
€ 6,50


Only escorted by a guide and by reservation 


The ticket allows you to visit the whole Garden, which includes the historical-symbolic area, the Botanic area, the Stables area, and the entrance to the oldest plant maze in the world up to the centre (central tower).
Those wishing to walk the labyrinth (approx. 1.5 km) require an extra ticket of € 4 (children up to 14 years old free of charge but accompanied). The labyrinth is open to visitors at all times with security staff on hand.


The Garden data

The Garden covers a surface of 150,000 square metres, geometrically shaped by 60,000 square metres of low grown boxwood. It is decorated by 70 statues in white marble, 4 fish ponds, and 16 fountains. The famous maze totals a path of one kilometre and a half with 10,000 square metres of boxwood. The garden boasts 800 plants in 76 different essences among which the Libocedro Decurrens and the Lebanon Cedar, and an unnumbered assortment of bushes, also in rare varieties.

What is a better way to illustrate the marvel
of this garden than with photos?
Valsanzibio Garden: Symbolism
The beauty of the Valsanzibio Gardens is not only in the fascinating water jokes, pools and statues which decorate a park rich in botanical species, but also in the complex symbolic path connecting all the garden’s elements.

Water Jokes

Once visitors are back to the Main Alley they reach the water jokes: inviting benches welcome the visitor with pert water spurts. Hidden in the fun of such games there is a very clear message: you cannot stop and rest after a long day when the goal is near: a last effort is necessary to arrive to your destination and to be awarded for the commitment shown along the way.

Starting from Diana’s Pavillion, dedicated to the Goddess of nature, wild animals, transformations and miracles, visitors will start a journey that takes them from a state of ignorance to a state of awareness.
After the fish pond called Diana’s Bath, the Rainbow Fountain and the Winds Fish Ponds, the visitors will reach the Pila Fountain, of hexagonal shape like the Baptism Fonts.
Next to it, the famous Boxwood Maze, the oldest and largest at present time, symbolizes the difficult way of human progress, filled with choices and sacrifices.
Thus visitors, after having walked the maze, and having found themselves, and after passing the Pagan time through a Baptism in the Pila Fountain, are ready to go thorough the Main Alley.


The Fountain of Ecstasy

After the Lonze Stairs, on which a sonnet is carved to explain the significance of the Garden, visitors reach the Villa’s Piazzale (square). Here, eight allegorical statues represent the Garden and his Lord’s prerogatives, and surround the Revelation Fountain which is the final destination of a path rich in charm, metaphors and mystery.


On the left of the Main Alley there is the Rabbit’s Island, which represents the condition of human life restricted by space and time limits.
The choice of rabbits, notoriously the most fertile rodents, signifies that the physical limits imposed by nature to human existence can be crossed thanks to the birth of offspring and, in this way, the continuation of life.
In front of the Rabbit’s Island there is the Statue of Time, a symbol of the transcendental condition of the human spirit which passes the usual time and space limits to reach perfection. Time is represented as an old man with his wings that have just closed or are ready to be unfolded, according to personal interpretation.


The labyrinth

The maze, or labyrinth, is an iconographic symbol rich in significance, which has accompanied the human beings since ancient times. Daedalus, Theseus, Ariadne and the Minotaur are the protagonists of the ancient Greek mythology, in which the maze is the planimetry of a building where it is difficult to find the entrance, the exit and consequentially, to orient yourself.

On a symbolic level, it is a spiritual journey towards the centre, towards the world within man, attained after a series of trials. This kind of interpretation, charged with mystical-Christian


values, survives during the Middle Ages: the maze represents the repentant’s spiritual journey towards eternal salvation.
Since the middle of the 16th century the maze has lost the spiritual significance to become a recreational cultural trend in the courts. During 17th and 18th centuries large mazes were built, and Valsanzibio is a good example of this. The maze, in that age, was a symbol of the awareness of a new and uncertain world within which man advanced in his path punctuated with choices, sacrifices and trials, to reach the understanding of himself, and his soul, with tools such as faith, intelligence and perspicacity.

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