I’m not one for the standard city tour, preferring to wander the city with a handful of funky off-the-beaten spots and my iPhone as my map, but a visit to the Recoleta Cemetery is a must when in Buenos Aires. Located in the heart of the Recoleta neighborhood, the cemetery is 14 acres of 6400 above ground vaults. Its a peaceful place to escape the hustle and bustle, but still get a feel for this amazing city and country. The cemetery is a great place to spend a couple hours wandering the labyrinthine pathways checking out the unique architecture of each mausoleum, you might even meet a furry friend.
The land was one the orchard of the adjoining Basílica Nuestra Señora del Pilar, the glistening white church overlooking the Plaza Francia, it became the city’s first public cemetery in 1822. Many notable people, including Eva Peron and boxer Luis Firpo, are buried here. Bold crosses, cathedral-like domes and winged angels are the common decorations to these grand resting places. A feeling of wealth and power abounds; only the most influential Argentines earn themselves a ticket to the Recoleta Cemetery once they moved on to the afterlife. Their mausoleums varying in styles from Neo-Classical, Neo-Gothic, and Art Nouveau design. These well-maintained vaults are juxtaposed to the many that have fallen into disrepair giving them an eerie, forgotten feeling. Some corners of the cemetery feel like you are lost in time.