The Park of Monsters – Il Parco dei Mostri di Bomarzo, Viterbo, Italy

(Last Updated On: April 15, 2019)

The Park of Monsters, or The Sacro Bosco, is the oddest park that we’ve ever ventured into. But with a name like the Park of Monsters, you’d expect nothing less.

Sea Monster Sculpture in Bamarzo Italy's Sacro Bosco
Sea Monster Sculpture in Bamarzo Italy’s Sacro Bosco

The Park of Monsters is a dark, forested and moss covered expanse of land. The stroll inside is actually quiet and serene, until you happen upon one of the 24 enormous stone statues. They are designed to have a provocative and shocking effect on the viewer, and many of them deliver. Imagine meandering down a stone staircase in the woods, turning the corner, and finding these guys.

Giant statue at The Monster Park on Bomarzo, Italy
Not a fun day at the park for this guy
Park of Monsters - Viterbo Italy
Park of Monsters – Viterbo Italy
Giants fighting - statue in Monster's Park, Viterbo Italy
The look on his face says it all – don’t you think?

The Sacro Bosco was commissioned by Price Pier Francesco who was distraught following the death of his wife. His anguish is clearly present in the park, even after all this time.

Statue in Bomarzo Park in Central Italy
Woman’s head sits atop an animals body at the Park of Monsters entrance
Il Parco dei Mostri di Bomarzo
Provocative image of one of Hanibal’s elephants on the attack

The Park of Monsters was completed in 1552. It is the work of architect Pirro Ligorio, best known for completing St. Peter’s Cathedral following the death of Michelangelo.

One of the Best things to do in Viterbo, Italy. Bomarzo Monster Park
A mocking look from a statue gazing up from the path
Monster Park, Bomarzo, Italy
Demon head watches from its perch

The Sacro Bosco was, for along time, abandoned and forgotten. The overgrown area was rediscovered in 1954 and restored. The years of neglect have left their scars on the gigantic statues, which only adds to their gruesome character.

Neptune - a nautical monster in Viterbo's Gardens
Neptune – looking angry and powerful on his stony thrown
Monster Park - Bomarzo Italy
Violent images dominate the calm and serene park setting. A little chilling….

Is it just me, or does this one remind you a little of the Starbucks symbol? I always thought it was a little creepy. The siren is actually mythological beautiful and dangerous mermaid, who would lure sailors to a watery grave after following her sweet song into the rocks. Coffee anyone?

Mermaid form in the Monster Garden in Viterbo, Italy
Siren in an odd pose lingers in the garden

After seeing images of the park on line, we were compelled to visit. Wandering through the park took about 2 hours. Photos don’t really help describe the massive statues that sometimes seem to appear out of nowhere.The visual impact is striking. But one of the most impressive things in the park, is the sound that comes out of this ogre when you growl inside its mouth. You know will!

Monster Park in Bomarzo, Italy
Ogre invites you to sit on the raised slab inside – and scream.

If you find yourself equally compelled to visit the park, it’s actually an easy day trip from Rome. The park sits about nine miles from the city of Viterbo, which is also worth touring around during your visit. Bomarzo itself is also a small picturesque hill top town that is fun to explore.

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Park of Monsters Viterbo Italy

 

To find Bomarzo from Rome – get directions by car, bus or train by searching Road2Rio

Park of Monsters is at Localití  Giardino at Bomarzo – Viterbo – Italy
It lies at 42° 29′ 22″ north latitude and 12° 14′ 53″ east longitude by our smartphone.
Instead for Google Maps it lies at 42° 48′ 95″ north latitude and 12° 24′ 82″ east longitude
The address by Google Maps:
01020 Bomarzo (Viterbo)
Via Madonna della Valle n°101

You can find other articles about things to do in Italy here. And if you are planning a trip, visit our Resources section for money saving tips and our best recommendations that we’ve compiled after 2 years of full-time travel.

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13 thoughts on “The Park of Monsters – Il Parco dei Mostri di Bomarzo, Viterbo, Italy”

  1. Okay, this is pretty interesting! I’ve never heard of the place before despite having been to Italy 3 times before – although admittedly 3 visits are not enough to cover Italy. Anyways, this is one of the oddest parks I’ve read about. Something I imagine one could find maybe in Japan but not in Italy, haha! Something to check out, definitely!

  2. Love your photos and how you took a series of the two guys at the beginning! Great effect. I was thinking how time and what it has done to the statues has added to the visual impact and then you confirmed it! Rome is such a fantastic city, but it’s always nice to have a good day-trip option.

  3. I think I would have liked this guy and his sense of humor! You are right, what a strange park, but I think it would be fun to see all those weird statues…I mean, you don’t see many like that elsewhere, that’s for sure!

  4. I love adventurer and scary places. These images are not scary and I do not know why this place has been named “Monster Park”. But I want to go there. They seem interesting, and I want to see them.

  5. My family and I tried to enter the park many years ago, but we ran away as we learned the ticket fee: it was something like 18 Euros each, definitely not worth of.

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