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Caserta Palace Gardens


The Caserta Palace, in Italian Palazzo Reale di Caserta, is a palace and former Royal residence in Caserta, near Naples, once used by the Kings of Naples. It was the largest palace and probably the largest building erected in Europe in the 18th century. In 1996, the Palace of Caserta was listed among the World Heritage Sites on the ground that it was "the swan song of the spectacular art of the Baroque, from which it adopted all the features needed to create the illusions of multidirectional space".

The gardens, a typical example of geometrical Italian style, stretch for 120 ha, partly on a hilly terrain. It is inspired to the park of Versailles, but it is commonly regarded as superior in beauty. The park starts from the back facade of the palace, flanking a long alley with artificial fountains and cascades.

The fountains and cascades, each filling a vasca ("basin"), with architecture and hydraulics by Luigi Vanvitelli at intervals along a wide straight canal that runs to the horizon, rivalled those at Peterhof outside St. Petersburg.

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