Along what is known as the Terraglio Road, connecting Mestre and Treviso, the villas and their estates follow a modern-day version of an ancient road system, one that was originally a shepherds’ trail linking the lagoon and upper Adriatic with high-mountain pasture.

Before Venice expanded onto the mainland, the first villas were actually erected not along the Terraglio Road but were set back in the countryside, facing south, as we may see from their original facades, which generally faced one of the many rivers that flow diagonally through the farmland before reaching the lagoon; their waters were used to power mills, follies, and farming.

The close-packed view we see today along the Terraglio Road, consisting of a succession of villas and parks, their tree-lined avenues vanishing into the countryside, is the result of a process consolidated over the centuries, rendering this tree-lined road compact – perhaps even unique – on the way in to the extraordinary old town of Treviso, which grew up around the springs along the Sile River.

Discover itinerary's gardens