Renaissance Idol: Raphael's Art and Life in Rome

3h English, Spanish, Italian

When Raphael died in April, 1520 at the age of only 37, the news sent shockwaves through Rome’s art world. The handsome painter from Urbino had long been regarded as a master of elegance, serenity and classical poise - a mortal seemingly touched by the divine. We explore his Roman work outside the Vatican and the great museums: his beautiful frescoes in two splendid churches and his sensual mythological decorations in the opulent Villa Farnesina. This is the Raphael that truly belongs to Rome. Join us on a journey that leads from one masterpiece to another in this, his 500th anniversary year.

What you'll discover

  • Celebrate Raphael's life and art during the 500th anniversary year of his death
  • Discover his great Roman works outside the Vatican collection and the major museums
  • Meet Raphael’s patrons and artistic rivals from High Renaissance Rome
  • See his glorious frescoes in their original settings
  • Explore several beautiful churches and relax in the elegant Villa Farnesina

Raphael always seemed just too good to be true. A young artist who quickly outshone his own artist-father, followed by his early master, Perugino, who then dazzlingly assimilated the lessons of his older contemporaries, Leonardo and Michelangelo, and displayed a winning grace that scarcely any rival could touch. His tragic death in 1520 seemed to mark the end of an era - a period we call the High Renaissance. We begin our journey at Raphael’s tomb in the Pantheon - an honour unheard of for any artist at that time - and take in some of the greatest works from his Roman career. In the church of Sant’Agostino, we’ll encounter his fresco of the Prophet Isaiah, which emulates Michelangelo’s heroic manner in the Sistine Chapel. Michelangelo did not take kindly to Raphael’s hommage and regarded the younger artist’s meteoric rise with jealous paranoia. We then enter the exquisite church of Santa Maria della Pace, close to the Piazza Navona, where Raphael’s consummate harmonies are on full display in his frescoed sybils for the powerful Chigi family. Nearby, we’ll stop in front of Sant’Eligio degli Orefici, one of Raphael’s few extant architectural projects, and later extensively altered from his designs. We’ll conclude our adventure by entering the sumptuous Villa Farnesina. Here Raphael painted his festive mythological frescoes Amore and Psyche, and The Triumph of Galatea in a once open loggia. This walk is an opportunity to appreciate the creations of one of the world’s most renowned artists in their original settings. Uncover the life and art of Raphael with an expert guide in the city that made him immortal. NOTES Non-inclusive ticket prices to the Villa Farnesina: Standard tickets (18-65 years old): 15 Euro. Reduced tickets (65+ years old): 12 Euro. Free ticket: Children under 10 accompanied by parents / Disabled persons.

Meet here

The meeting point is in front of the Pantheon, your guide will be there waiting for you next to the fountain in the middle of Piazza della Rotonda square.

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Handpicked city experts for memorable adventures.

Meet your Stroller


My name is Zenda and I’m an enthusiastic and experienced guide working in Rome. I grew up here and have always loved this city. In fact, I studied archaeology at the Università degli Studi di Roma, ‘La Sapienza’, and took part in site excavations as part of my training. I’ll bring you back to the ancient city of the Emperors, and to the Medieval era when its streets were thronged with pilgrims, and to the Renaissance and Baroque eras, when artists from Raphael to Caravaggio endowed its palaces and churches with outstanding masterpieces. Do you feel excited? Great! Let’s discover the secrets of the Eternal City together.

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€43 per person (6 people)