Pere Lachaise Cemetery

12:28:00 PM Unknown 0 Comments

I believe my fascination with cemeteries began with my mother who took us to a Civil War Cemetery when I was a child.  Since then, whenever I am in a place to visit an historic burial ground, I go.  Maybe it's the moss covered stone, perhaps it's the tilted grave marker weathered by time or the sweet sentiments that immortalize a soul.  

Grave yards are treasure troves of information, not only are birth and death dates recorded, but if someone was notable, heroic or successful at his occupation it will be mentioned on the stone.  Often husbands and wives are laid side by side, sometimes entire families are buried together.  One thing is constant though, when a loved one dies, he/she is sorely missed.  It is not uncommon to read things like, "till we meet again," or "beloved son/daughter/mother/father."  I am especially touched when I see little children buried far to early and think of the mother who tearfully laid her child to rest. 

The Details
Directions: Metro line 3 to Gambetta--sortie#3, turn left and follow signs
We followed the Rick Steves guide through the cemetery and his walk works best if you get off at Gambetta.
Cost: free
Hours: Mon-Sat 8am-6pm, Sun 9am-6pm.
Time: We wandered for about two hours
Lunch: Obododo--Cafe on the corner to your left as you exit cemetery at Porte Principale 
             28 Blvd Menilmontant 75020 Paris
             40e for the 4 of us, nothing special, but we enjoyed our meal.
There is a row of graves dedicated to World War 2 heros and holocaust victims.

Pere Lachaise Cemetery is a fantastic grave yard with around 70,000 burials.  Graves are laid out every which way, it's actually pretty surprising you can find anyone in particular. I loved the architecture of the graves--is that the right term?  The older ones tend to be bigger and more ornate, they are quite beautiful.

Some of the more notable people buried here are Jim Morrison, Oscar Wilde, and Chopin.