Tiber Island

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The Tiber Island is a river island in the centre of Rome. The island has a length of about 300 meters and is about 60 meters wide. The Tiber Island divides the river Tiber into about 2 equally wide halves.

It is since the 1st century B.C. with 2 bridges, over each part of the Tiber a bridge. In former times it was a very important crossing over the Tiber, long time in the antiquity the only solid crossing over the river in Rome.

Important for travellers to Rome: We have only seen queues of hundreds of metres or several hours in Europe in Rome. This is especially true for St. Peter’s Basilica, the Colosseum and the Vatican Museum. Tickets without queuing (skip-the-line tickets) must be bought in advance on the internet and go past the queue!: This link offers such tickets

Today the bridge to the city centre is a pedestrian bridge, over the other one you can drive by car. Among others the bridge is used by ambulances to the hospital “Ospedale Fatebenefratelli” on the island.

The bridge from the city centre to the Tiber island is called “Pons Fabricius” and was opened in 62 BC. It has been preserved as a pedestrian walkway since antiquity (see picture below). The “Pons Cestius” to the district Trastevere was also built for the first time in the 1st century B.C., but later rebuilt and widened several times.

Today on the Tiber island (the island is also called Tiberina) are a well-known hospital, a church and a wide path around the island.

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In the beautiful old church “San Bartolomeo all’Isola” there is an interesting exhibition about some martyrs from the 20th century, which was opened almost 20 years ago by Pope John Paul II. These include, for example, a conscientious objector from Austria who was executed during the Nazi era or a bishop from El Salvador who was murdered in 1980

On a staircase next to the bridge to Trastevere you can go down to the river. On a wide footpath (see picture below) you can walk once around the whole Tiber island (about 800 meters). In summer, the island in the Tiber is also a meeting place for young people from all over the world.

Especially with children you should be careful. There is no fence or similar to the river. The Tiber is a dangerous river at this point with a steep gradient and strong current.

In Italian the Tiber Island is called “Isola Tiberina”, in English simply “Tiber Island”. The next underground station is Circus Maximus, about 800 meters away.

Nearby are the Capitoline Museums of Rome, the monument to Victor Emmanuel II and the ancient arena Circus Maximus. The Colosseum can also be reached on foot in 15 minutes from Tiber Island.

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More info Tiber Island

Tiber Island is a small but historic island in the heart of Rome. It lies in the Tiber River between the districts of Trastevere and Campo Marzio and is accessible via two bridges, one on each side. The island has a rich history spanning centuries, making it an important site for religious and medical purposes.

The island is best known as the site of the San Giovanni Calivita Hospital, which dates back to the 6th century. It is considered one of the oldest hospitals in the world and has been in continuous operation for over 1000 years. In the Middle Ages, the hospital served as a refuge for pilgrims to Rome and was known for its advanced medical care and equipment. In the 19th century, the hospital was modernised and expanded to become one of Italy’s leading medical facilities.

Today, the San Giovanni Caribita Hospital is a museum dedicated to the history of Roman medicine and medical science. Visitors can tour the historic buildings, view exhibits on the history of medicine and learn about the various treatments and procedures performed in the hospitals throughout their long history.The museum is open to the public and offers interesting insights into past medical practices. Next to the Tiber Hospital is the ancient church of San Bartolomeo Isola, built in the 10th century. This church was built on the site of a much older temple dedicated to the Greek god of medicine, Asclepius. The church has been renovated and restored several times over the centuries and is a fine example of medieval architecture. Visitors can tour the church and admire the ornate frescoes, sculptures and other works of art.

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Apart from its historical and cultural attractions, Tiber is also a popular destination for tourists because of its central location. The island is surrounded by some of Rome’s most famous neighbourhoods, steeped in history and culture, such as Trastevere, Campo Marzio and the Jewish Ghetto. Visitors can explore these neighbourhoods and enjoy the local restaurants, shopping and entertainment.

In summary, the Tiber Island is a must-see for any visitor to Rome. Its rich history and cultural significance combined with its central location and beautiful architecture make it a unique and fascinating destination. Anyone interested in the history of medicine and medieval architecture, or who simply wants to experience the heart of Rome, will leave an unforgettable impression on the Tiber Island.

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