Tombstone Tourism – Visiting Cemeteries While On Vacation

Random photo I shot in Elmwood Cemetery in Detroit. For those of you who are interested, Elmwood Cemetery offers tours.

Alright here’s something to ask your self? You go on a vacation, in the process of it all if you’re looking for something truly unique to do while on vacation with friends, or family. Here’s a suggestion, why not visit a local cemetery or two! For one thing visiting cemeteries while on vacation for the most part is inexpensive. Most cemeteries do not charge an admission fee, and if they do the fee is usually a small amount to pay.

For example to take advantage of the interpretative tour bus service at Arlington National Cemetery, across the river from Washington, DC. The prices you’d be paying include: Adults: $8.75, Children (Ages 3-11): $4.50, Senior Citizen (Individuals 65 years or older): $7.50, Groups (20 or more people) for public tour: $8.00 for adults and $4.00 for children. It’s unknown to me what the fee is to enter the cemetery. Unfortunately you’d also be paying for parking at the price of $1.75/hour for the first three hours, and $2.50/hour thereafter. –Arlington National Cemetery

Most of the historic cemeteries around the United States, and the world offer guided tours of the cemetery you’re visiting. If your going to be in Los Angeles and happen to find your way to the historic Hollywood Forever Cemetery. Ask about the tours being offered by the lovely Karie Bible. She’s the tour guide at Hollywood Forever, who’s seriously knowledgeable about the Hollywood movers and shakers buried within the tranquil confines of the cemetery. If you do find your self taking one of Karie’s tours. Please let her know “The Motor City Morbid One” sent you. She’s a friend of mine, and I highly recommend her tour. You can find more info about the tours Karie offers at the website she maintains for her tour.

While visiting cemeteries on vacation might not be your cup of tea. You definitely should give it a try. Cemeteries are a perfect match for history buffs, people into genealogy, or if you’d like to do something out of the typical norm while on vacation. Whether your into visiting the graves of famous or notable people, like me. Or your into visiting cemeteries for genealogical reasons. Not only that having a discussion with a friend, or relative about a cemetery you visited, not to mention who you found, make for intriguing conversations as well. I love to have discussions about the cemeteries/memorial parks I’ve visited. I can pretty much go on for hours about the famous, and notable graves I’ve found, and the unusual monuments, and mausoleums I photographed.

Here are some useful tidbits to keep in mind if you plan to take my advice and visit a local cemetery while you’re on vacation.

1. Be prepared to snap lots of photos at different angles/points of view.

2. Dress comfortably, and be prepared to do A LOT of walking.

3. Be respectful, don’t litter, or vandalize ANYTHING.

4. Stop in the cemetery office or gift shop. Inquire if they’ve got maps, books, or pamphlets for sale. These things will usually highlight the notable/famous personalities who call the sacred ground their forever home.

5. Look into tours being offered at the cemetery (Call ahead for that to be prepared).

6. Have fun, and I mean LOTS of fun.

7. Do research before your visit. Online resources such as Find A Grave.com  are a great place to start.

8. Drink water, to keep your self hydrated especially if its hot, and humid in the region.

Lastly, if you have any questions about visiting cemeteries while on vacation, or in general. Please don’t hesitate to email me and ask questions.

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s