Paris is life, culture, museums, historical sites and beautiful streets. It is everything we can expect from it and much more: romantic, funny and absorbing, in short, unforgettable. An obligatory tour that is out of the ordinary are the cemeteries of Paris. It is an experience that transmits a certain nostalgia, that has that special air that the city exudes.
At the beginning of the 19th century, the most important cemeteries of the city were built to replace the old cemeteries. Today, there are 14 necropolises that we can visit in Paris. We reveal the most beautiful and their main curiosities.
1. Père-Lachaise, the cemeteries of celebrities
The largest intramural cemetery in all of Paris is also one of the most recognized in the world. Parisians walk through it as if it were a park. Full of trees and green spaces, its many tombs are yet another witness to its rich cultural and architectural heritage.
If you are in the 20th Arrondissement, go to 16 Rue du Repos. With more than 70,000 graves, his work was carried out at the beginning of the 19th century by the neoclassical architect Alexandre Théodore Brongniart.
The name of Père-Lachaise is a tribute to the confessor of King Louis XIV. Entrance to the cemetery is freebut don’t forget to have a map handy with the different tombs you can see.
Among the famous characters who rest here, in the literary field, stand out Marcel Proust, Honoré de BalzacGertrude Stein and Oscar Wilde.
The tomb of Oscar Wilde is one of the most visited. It has a large winged sphinx and is protected by glass, since the custom was to kiss the tomb, leaving the mark of lipstick.
Great composers such as Bizet, Chopin or Rossini also rest eternally in this cemetery.. Or singers like Édith Piaf, María Callas or Jim Morrison, whose grave is one of the most famous in existence.
Other celebrities buried here are painters such as Delacroix, Modigliani together with his beloved Jeanne Hébuterne, Pissarro or Géricault. Do not forget to approach one of the most illustrious cemeteries that exist.
2. Passy, a necropolis near the Eiffel Tower
If you are walking through Trocadero, in the 16th Arrondissement, don’t hesitate to go through number 2 Rue du Commandante Schloesing. Passy Cemetery was opened in 1820 and was intended for the aristocracy. With wonderful views of the Eiffel Tower and the banks of the Seine, it is surrounded by chestnut trees.
Among the most recognized “guests” we find the composer Claude Debussy, painters such as Berthe Morisot or Édouard Manet and the famous fashion designer Hubert de Givenchy. One of the most visited tombs is that of the Russian artist Marie Bashkirtseffwhich recreates his study and is a national monument.
If you are walking through the Trocadero Gardens, do not miss the opportunity to enter one of the most popular Paris cemeteries in Paris for free.
3. Montparnasse, among the cemeteries of Paris with a bohemian air
Opened in 1824 and built on the land of three farms, it is located in the heart of the XIV Arrondissement, at number 3, Boulevard Edgar Quinet. After Père-Lachaise it is the largest cemetery in the city. Likewise, it rivals this in terms of the large number of reputed characters who rest here.
in the world of letters we can pay our respects to Julio Cortázar, Samuel Becket, Charles Baudelaire, Marguerite Duras, Guy de Maupassant or the founder of Dadaism, Tristan Tzara. The distinguished couple of philosophers formed by Jean-Paul Sartre and Simone de Beauvoir also rest in Montparnasse.
Your entry is also free.. Do not forget to go through one of the liveliest neighborhoods in the city and visit its necropolis.
4. Paris cemeteries: Montmartre, in the heart of the Impressionist neighborhood
Climbing up the hill of Montmartre in the 18th Arrondissement, standing in front of the Sacré Coeur, seeing the home of the great 19th century artists and looking at the painters on the Place du Tertre is like stepping back into another era. It is one of the most special and picturesque places in Pariswhich retains all its charm and authenticity.
Its cemetery maintains in the same way all that romantic air. Located near the Place de Clichy, at 20 Avenue Rachel, it is the last of the four great Paris necropolises to be inaugurated. Opened in 1825, it has more than 20,000 tombs.
Full of trees among which to walk and with free access, There are many artists and celebrities who rest in this cemetery: Edgar Degas, Gustave Moreau, Hector Berlioz, Alexandre Dumas son, Stendhal or François Truffaut. Émile Zola’s tomb is also here, although his ashes were transferred to the Pantheon in 1908, an honor in France.
Much visited is also the tomb of Dalidasinger and actress of French nationality born in Egypt, always full of flowers.