Scotland

Explore The Necropolis (Glasgow’s Victorian Era Garden Cemetery)

Explore The Necropolis (Glasgow's VIctorian Era Garden Cemetery)

Sitting on a prominent hill in the heart of Glasgow is The Necropolis, a magnificent Victorian-era garden cemetery.

Modeled on Pere-Lachaise in Paris, it’s a feat of architectural brilliance that feels more like an outdoor museum than a burial ground.

It’s a treasure trove of history, sculpture, & architecture all in one open space.

The Glasgow Necropolis

Originally built in 1831, over 50,000 individuals are interred in this interdenominational cemetery.

The 37-acre plot is home to 3,500 tombs, most of which were constructed by the major architects and sculptors of the day. Including Glasgow’s darling Charles Renee Macintosh.

Monuments at Glasgow Necropolis

I happen to love visiting old cemeteries in Europe.

I’ve found historic gems in Eastern Europe in Krakow, Warsaw, and Vienna. Wandered my fair share in Italy, my home.

And I’m always on the lookout in England & Scotland, where old church cemeteries seem to be everywhere!

Brompton Cemetery in London captured my attention many years ago. And along with Greyfriars Kirk in Edinburgh, the Necropolis is on the top of my all-time favorites list.

Glasgow Necropolis

As the second-largest green space in central Glasgow, The Necropolis is an ideal place to stretch your legs and take in some fresh air.

As an advocate for wellness travel, I’m always seeking out walking opportunities. Because walking can be worked into any itinerary, it’s just about the simplest way to support well-being on the road.

It’s a convenient way to stay in shape and it’s a good starting point in planning tech-free vacations.

Opportunities like this highlight that wellness travel really is for everyone and that with a little bit of planning it’s easy to incorporate wellness elements into travel.

Men Walking In A Garden Cemetery

Here are just a few reasons the Necropolis is an appealing place for anyone’s bucket list.

The Friends of Glasgow Necropolis provides free group, private, & bespoke walking tours.

Follow the Women’s Heritage Walk for a unique historical perspective.

It’s an ideal place to enjoy a mindful photo walk.

Tuck the phone away & make it tech-free time.

With over 100 species of flowering plants and shrubs, butterflies & squirrels, it’s a mindful nature experience.

It’s one of the best photo locations in the city.

It affords sweeping views of Glasgow. Including the breathtaking view of the Medieval Glasgow Cathedral, the oldest in Scotland.

You’ll find peace & quiet.


Walking The Necropolis

The main entrance is approached by a gate and long bridge giving plenty of time and space to take in the grand scale of the cemetery.

The bridge famously became known as the “Bridge of Sighs” because it was part of the funeral procession route.

Glasgow Necropolis Bridge of Sighs

There are many stories here and each stone heads reveals a piece of the past.

Like most Victorian burial sites, the Necropolis is laid out like an informal park.

Paths meander throughout the gravestones, providing direction to amble or simply stop when curiosity strikes.

Glasgow Necropolis

There are also grassy spaces to roam on the top of the hill.

At times it feels more like a park than a graveyard. It’s peaceful.

Glasgow Necropolis

Even though it is a burial ground, the atmosphere maintains respect for those buried there. Leaving room for a mindful & contemplative experience.

The job of designing The Necropolis went to a landscape gardener rather than an architect, and it certainly shows. The layout encourages wandering from bottom to top.

These monuments were made to be looked at and appreciated, as many were tributes to the wealth of the Glasgow at the time.

Tombstone Glasgow Necropolis

The landscape harmonizes with the adjacent scenery, making it a visual treat to explore

It offers a new appreciation for the scale and craftsmanship of Glasgow Cathedral and Royal Infirmary.

It’s quite a view to stop and enjoy!

Glasgow Cathedral

Open daily from 7 – 4:30, don’t miss this great opportunity to combine history & architecture with some fresh air and quiet solitude. Your mind & body will thank you.

It’s truly a one of a kind experience!

What do you think, sound like it’s for you?

until the next time…
…live well – travel well – be well

More Scottish Inspiration…

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