With family members in town a visit to Recoleta Cemetery was required, but I had numerous postings from there – a focused subject was required. Spiderwebs!
While Buenos Aires is home to the famed Recoleta Cemetery, it is by no means the only impressive cemetery in town.
We went on a tour of La Chacarita Cemetery with Pablo, an interesting person with a vast amount of knowledge of the history of the city.
While it has some similarities to Recoleta, it is much larger.
There are many massive tombs that were used for societies, as this one dedicated to, and for the use of people of the Spanish immigrants society.
Chacarita has more famous Argentinians than Recoleta, including Jorge Newberry. Jorge lead a very interesting, if short, life as an early aviator.
One of the two airports for Buenos Aires is named after Jorge. He died in an early attempt to fly over the Andes Mountains. The plaques on the wall are dedications to him from other groups.
While most of the crypts are well kept, some are in need of repair.
Carlos Gadel was a singer, songwriter and actor. It is said he gave Sinatra pointers on how to become a more polished performer.
People often leave lit cigarettes in his right hand for good luck.
More scenes of Chacarita…
But there is more to Chacarita than the large crypts, much much more. Built in the brutalist style there is a massive underground area.
It is an unreal sight with over 1/4 million people entombed below.
Beyond this area is an area dedicated to famous Argentina performers. These are not just statues, the performers are actually buried here.
Beyond that area is a massive ‘common grounds’
The crematorium is in the center of the cemetery. The place is so large taxi’s troll through looking for fares.
One urban legend says to never take a taxi in the cemetery – if you look in the mirror the driver will not have a reflection.
Additional monuments are scattered throughout.
Another stunning sight is the perimeter wall – it is lined with more crypts. In all there are well over a million people in the cemetery.
For the most part the cemetery is in nice shape, however there are portions that need some repair, as shown below.
We spent over 2 hours wandering about La Chacarita Cemetery. It was an amazing, and visually stunning experience.
When in Buenos Aires look up Pablo, under Walks with Pablo. He is an excellent guide.
Our Saturday continued with a tour of Greenlawn Cemetery. While nowhere close to as impressive as Recoleta Cemetery in Buenos Aires, or even Spring Grove Cemetery in Cincinnati, Greenlawn is the final resting place for numerous famous Ohioans including 5 governors, as well as a number of military sections for the various wars since the mid 1800s, among the 150,000+ people buried here.
Columbus’s favorite son – famed aviator and more – Eddie Rickenbacker.
Those who regularly follow this blog know that the website Roadside America is one of my favorite sources for the strange and unusual. A few years ago we visited most of the Roadside America attractions for Columbus and detailed them in this post
Today we finished off the last few, starting with a giant boot outside the LL Bean store.
A pet cemetery from the 1930s – 1960s – you can Googles it (I know really bad pun). Supposedly there are a few military dogs there, but it is large and we were unable to locate them.
A very colorful Buddhist temple in an otherwise nondescript housing neighborhood.
Large cowboy #1
And his twin just down the street – large cowboy #2.
And for the grand finale – the Gates of Hell – otherwise known as a large drainage pipe under High Street, complete with urban legends of hauntings.
While we haven’t seen all of America, we have now seen all of Columbus!
One of the cultures of Buenos Aires is one that celebrates in a grand way those who have died. The best example of this is the world renown Recoleta Cemetery.
If you search for ‘worlds most impressive cemeteries’ Recoleta Cemetery will always be included in any list. It is huge, historical, ornate, impressive and at times macabre. There are so many stunning scenes that it will be broken up into 3 postings, to keep the size reasonable.
Recoleta Cemetery – final resting place for the rich and famous of Argentina.
The tour continues, including a visit from (I think) a young actress doing a photo shoot!
Our visit to Recoleta Cemetery concludes, but not without a stop to pay our respects to Evita!
Why so many photos? With almost 4,700 ornate vaults, the photo ops were better than nearly anyplace I have ever been.
New Orleans is famous for their approach towards funerals and burials. Because of their location the city has always taken a unique approach towards cemeteries. Instead of burying people in the grown New Orleans has always gone vertical.
Because of the popularity, and vandalism, you must attend a tour to check out the cemetery. Our tour guide was fantastic – combining humor with knowledge.
The cemetery is the oldest in town, dating from the late 1700s.
There have been a number of construction approaches over the years for the vertical vaults. As a result there are tens of thousands of remains throughout the cemetery.
Most are owned by individual families. Many have small fences surrounding them to delineate their space.
Over the years some have been maintained more than others. The original brick ones have had their mortar dry up and fall out, with the fix being to cover them in stucco.
From certain angles they appear to be additional downtown buildings.
A few have tributes – not sure what an angel and a voodoo head symbolize.
The visuals throughout are stunning.
Some of the other tour participants fit the mood.
One of the interesting aspects is the ‘common’ space. If you don’t have a family crypt, or you have ‘lost your lease’, you are placed into the large community vault. There are literally thousands of remains there.
The history of New Orleans and cemeteries is a very interesting one. With the guide we had we learned much, and were able to experience the macabre beauty of the St Louis Cemetery #1.
The Qutb Shahi Tombs are located in Hyderabad, India, a city of 8 million people. The tombs were originally constructed during the Qutb Shai dynasty in the 14th and 15th century. They were initially restored in the 1800s, with some restoration continuing.
With one central tomb, there are numerous ones surrounding it. For those interested in more details I suggest using the wiki page as it describes each in detail
For those not interested in reading the photos give a good overview of them.
The Spring Grove Cemetery and Arboretum was designed in the 1840s by Adolph Strauch, a renown lanscape architect who’s view was to have a ‘garden cemetery’ made up of trees, lakes and shrubs.
It is the second largest (in area) cemetery in the United States, with over 700 acres, including 400 that are landscaped. As we toured in our car we passed trams leading tours, as well as numerous walkers. It clearly was different than most cemeteries with the spaciness and landscaping.