Canopus colonnade, with the Great Baths in the background, Hadrian’s villa (UNESCO World Heritage List, 1999), Tivoli, Lazio, Italy. Roman civilisation, 2nd century.
The 2nd-century Roman emperor Hadrian spent much of his 20-year reign traveling through his empire, absorbing architectural inspiration from Greece to Egypt. His vision for a luxury villa was realized in Tivoli, a Roman suburb, where he constructed a sprawling palatial complex decked out with the finest statuary of the age. Hadrian’s Villa is a UNESCO World Heritage site, and it contains the ruins of over 30 epic structures. Be sure to check out the Maritime Theater, which Italian authorities managed to partially restore.