One of the leading figures of Italian Renaissance, Raffaello, came from a hillside village called Urbino, in the Marche region. Son of the painter Giovanni Santi, Raphael began running his father's workshop after he became orphan at 11 and then made his apprenticeship with Pietro Perugino in Umbria. Once in Florence, he took his rightful place in the Holy Trinity of high Renaissance masters along with Leonardo and Michelangelo. Then, he moved to Rome, where he worked at the decoration of Pope Julius II's private apartments.
Start this off-the-beaten-path tour in a hidden church not far from the famous Piazza Navona. You'll admire a fresco by Raffaello, that will allow you to compare his figures with those of Prophets and Sibyls depicted by Michelangelo in the Sistine Chapel.
Continue through the charming streets of Via dei Coronari and Via Giulia, home to the painter while he was working at a chapel within the small church of Sant’Eligio degli Orefici. Head to the Tiber river and cross Ponte Sisto, a bridge built in dedication of Pope Sixtus IV and offering a fantastic view over St. Peter's Dome. You'll enter Trastevere, a quaint and characteristic district of Rome. This was one of Raphael's favourite areas as Margherita Luti used to live here; the artist fell deeply in love with this "fornarina" (literally baker's daughter) and used her as a model for female representations in many of his artworks.
The final stop of the walking tour is Villa Farensina, one of the clearest examples of Renaissance art and architecture in Rome. The mansion was the private residence of the richest man in Rome at the time. The interior walls are decorated by priceless Raffaello frescoes, including The Triumph of Galatea and the Loggia of Amore and Psiche, inspired by Ancient Roman myths.