Rome Guides: Tiber Island
The island sitting in the middle of the Tiber is a very old feature of the Rome, as landmasses tend to be. Still, the Island is not as old as one might think — if the legends about it are to be believed. When Tarquinius' family was removed from the city, the stories allege that their fields were dumped into the Tiber and (over time) formed the island through sediment growth. Long associated with the healing god Asclepius, the Romans built a temple to the deity and his snake symbol can be found stamped into the side of one of the buildings. Though no longer a pagan shrine, Tiber Island still features a place of healing in its housing of the Fatebenefratelli Hospital — run by the Order of the Hospitallers. Aside from a hospital, the Island also contains an excellent gelato shop, a Church and a basilica, as well as a small Jewish Temple — something of an oddity for Rome. Should you look off the southern tip of the Island, you will see the remains of Ponte Rotto. A collapsed bridge, the structure is noteworthy as the oldest bridge in Rome. With the many crisscrossing bridges touching the Island, you will find that visiting Isola Tiebernia is not difficult if you ever want to travel between Trastevere and the other Roman districts.