Famous Graves and Cemeteries
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50 Famous Gravesites and Cemeteries Around the World

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Famous Graves and Cemeteries
Andrea Izzotti/shutterstock

Haunts of the Rich and Famous

Most people don't have the chance to meet their heroes while they're still alive, but almost anyone can pay them tribute after they've passed with a visit to their final resting places. Although there are graveyards in every state and thousands of distinguished gravesites and cemeteries worth seeing around the world, here are a few of the most famous ones to cross off your bucket list.

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Major General George Armstrong Custer Grave
Major General George Armstrong Custer Grave by Greg Peterson (CC BY)

Gen. George Custer

West Point, New York
The Civil War general most famous for his "last stand" at the Battle of Little Big Horn can be found in the West Point Cemetery alongside many other distinguished military men and women from throughout U.S. history. His grave is marked by a Washington Monument-esque pillar with intricate engravings at its base.

Related: 15 Awe-Inspiring Memorials and Other Places Honoring Our Vets

Charles Lindbergh's Grave, Hana, Hawaii
Steve Heap/shutterstock

Charles Lindbergh

Hana, Hawaii 
The first man to fly solo across the Atlantic, Charles Lindbergh rests for eternity on the island of Maui atop a bluff overlooking the Pacific. His scenic gravesite bears the inscription "If I take the wings of the morning, and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea …" and sits behind the Palapala Ho'omau Church, the first place on the island to see the sunrise each morning.

Johnny Cash and June Carter-Cash's Grave, Hendersonville, Tennessee
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Johnny Cash and June Carter-Cash

Hendersonville, Tennessee 
The former first couple of country music are still together in death, with matching gravestones at Hendersonville Memorial Gardens, not far from the lakefront property where they lived for more than three decades. A bench behind the flat headstones features one of Cash's most moving quotes, "Happiness is being at peace; being with loved ones; being comfortable ... But most all, it's having those loved ones."

Related: Bucket-List Destinations for Music Lovers

Oscar Wilde's Grave, Paris, France
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Oscar Wilde

It took 10 months to build Oscar Wilde's tomb, a sphinx-like sculpture by Jacob Epstein that stands out even in the distinguished setting of the Père Lachaise Cemetery. Thousands visit the monument each year to pay their respects, leave flowers, light candles, and even leave lipstick kiss marks, though a glass barrier was erected to make the tomb "kiss-proof" in 2011.

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Jim Morrison's Grave, Paris, France
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Jim Morrison

Another popular permanent resident of Père Lachaise is Doors frontman Jim Morrison, whose grave has an unfortunate history of defacement, having formerly featured a bust that was vandalized repeatedly and then stolen in 1988. His flat headstone is now cordoned off, but fans still find unique ways to pay tribute by pressing gum onto a nearby tree or leaving stickers on the metal barriers.

Frederic Chopin's Grave, Paris, France

Frederic Chopin

Polish romantic composer Frederic Chopin's grave is watched over by a weeping, moss-covered stone sculpture of Euterpe, the muse of music, holding a broken instrument. It's yet another example of the gorgeous grave architecture, honoring names both well-known and unknown, that makes Père Lachaise one of Paris' most popular sites.

Even amidst fierce flames the golden lotus can be planted
Even amidst fierce flames the golden lotus can be planted by Tim Green (CC BY)

Sylvia Plath

Heptonstall, England
Though fans have always left flowers and writing utensils as tributes, poet and author Sylvia Plath's simple grave in the St.Thomas' Churchyard was long the subject of controversy for the inclusion of the surname "Hughes" by her husband and fellow poet, Ted Hughes, whom some blamed for her death. The word was repeatedly chiseled off before being cast in bronze to stop the vandalism.

Bette Davis grave
Bette Davis grave by Alan Light (CC BY)

Bette Davis

Glendale, California 
Bette Davis, actress and star of such Hollywood classics as "All About Eve," matched the acerbic wit she displayed onscreen with her choice of epitaph, "She did it the hard way," engraved on her elegant family tomb in Forest Lawn Memorial Park near the Hollywood Hills, sometimes called the "cemetery of the stars."

Elizabeth Taylor's Grave, Glendale, California
Elizabeth Taylor's Grave, Glendale, California by Taph Madison (CC BY-SA)

Elizabeth Taylor

Glendale, California 
Another celebrated actress of Hollywood's Golden Age, Elizabeth Taylor is buried beneath an open-armed angel in a corridor near Forest Lawn's Memorial Terrace. The famously opulent cemetery is home to many more noteworthy graves belonging to Walt Disney, Michael Jackson, and Nat King Cole. Don't expect help in finding them onsite, however.

Eva Perón's Grave, Buenos Aires, Argentina
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Eva Perón

Buenos Aires, Argentina
At La Recoleta Cemetery, guests can pay tribute at the beautifully Baroque gravesites of actors, writers, chemists, and 18 Argentine presidents, but most international visitors come for the simpler bronze-plaque tomb of Eva Perón, the actress and wife of President Juan Perón who inspired the celebrated musical "Evita."

Bruce Lee's Grave, Seattle, Washington

Bruce Lee

Kung fu master and martial arts film star Bruce Lee lies beneath a tree and beside his son in Seattle's Lakeview Cemetery, where visitors from around the world come to place flowers and pay their respects. His red headstone mentions only one accomplishment: "Founder of Jeet Kune Do."

Jimi Hendrix's Grave, Renton, Washington

Jimi Hendrix

Renton, Washington 
South of his hometown of Seattle, legendary rock guitarist and singer Jimi Hendrix's grave is marked by a marble dome in Greenwood Memorial Park, where he rests alongside his father and stepmother. The dome's pillars feature engraved portraits of Hendrix and quotes from his songs, beneath which fans place candles, flowers, and guitar picks. 

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Ernest Hemingway's Grave
Ernest Hemingway's Grave by Greg Harness (CC BY-NC-SA)

Ernest Hemingway

Ketchum, Idaho 
Ernest Hemingway was almost as famous for his outdoorsmanship as for his sparse prose style, so it's fitting that the author is buried in Idaho's Rocky Mountains alongside his wife, son, and granddaughter. His grave in the Ketchum Cemetery is humbling and appropriately modest, just a flat slab of stone often covered by fallen brush and sometimes bottles of alcohol left as memorials.

Booth family plot: John Wilkes Booth is buried here
Booth family plot: John Wilkes Booth is buried here by William Johns (CC BY)

John Wilkes Booth

The 19th century stage actor John Wilkes Booth is notorious still today for assassinating Abraham Lincoln shortly after the close of the Civil War. His body rests in the family plot in Baltimore's Greenmount Cemetery, where visitors will often leave pennies bearing Lincoln's profile atop his headstone as a small form of tribute for the late president and retribution for his murderer.

Isaac Newton
Wikimedia Commons

Isaac Newton

Scientist, astronomer, and originator of both the laws of motion and the theory of gravity, Isaac Newton is buried in Westminster Abbey in the chapel of his alma mater Trinity College. An ornate memorial sculpture features a reclining Newton and a relief with boys playing with a telescope and other scientific instruments. 

Charles Darwin's Grave in London, England
Charles Darwin's Grave in London, England by Hcallas (CC BY)

Charles Darwin

Nearby Sir Newton in Westminster Abbey is a simple stone commemorating the life of English naturalist, scientist, and philosopher Charles Darwin, best known for his book "On the Origin of Species," which transformed scientific thinking in the latter half of the 19th century.

2010-11-19 Pan02266 Grave of Mary Kelly in St Patrick's RC Cemetery, Leytonstone.
2010-11-19 Pan02266 Grave of Mary Kelly in St Patrick's RC Cemetery, Leytonstone. by Kath (CC BY)

Mary Jane Kelly

The final of five confirmed victims of Jack the Ripper, Mary Kelly was a prostitute living in poverty when she was slain by the infamous, unidentified murderer in 1888. Though no family members could be found to attend her funeral, she's honored today with scores of flowers at the Leytonstone Roman Catholic Cemetery.

Winston Churchill's Grave, Oxfordshire, England
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Winston Churchill

Winston Churchill, the historical icon and two-time prime minister best known for leading Britain through World War II, was honored with an enormous state funeral attended by representatives from 112 nations upon his death in 1965. Today, he's honored at Westminster Abbey but rests at the family plot in the St. Martin Churchyard.

Karl Marx's Grave, London, England

Karl Marx

Regardless of how one feels about the ideas of Karl Marx, his gravesite is an impressive monument befitting the German philosopher's enormous impact on modern history. He died stateless but was laid to rest in England's East Highgate cemetery, marked with a large stone obelisk topped by a bust of his stern countenance.

William Shakespeare's Grave, Stratford-upon-Avon, England

William Shakespeare

Stratford-upon-Avon, England
William Shakespeare remains the most celebrated and likely the most influential playwright in history. Thousands of visitors flock to the Holy Trinity Church each year to see a garish sculpture of the author overlooking his unadorned grave, featuring an inscription meant to deter grave robbers: "Bleste be the man that spares thes stones, And curst be he who moves my bones."

Emily Dickinson's Grave - Amherst
Emily Dickinson's Grave - Amherst by mayaisaleo (CC BY)

Emily Dickinson

Amherst, Massachusetts 
Emily Dickinson's minimalist headstone in Amherst West Cemetery has no quote from the poet's oft-spiritual work, just an inscription noting she was "Called Back," followed by her date of death. Her family plot is delineated by a black iron fence where fans leave flowers in memoriam.

Doña Amelia Goyri de la Hoz's Grave, Havana, Cuba

Doña Amelia Goyri de la Hoz

Havana, Cuba
The gravesite of this 24-year-old woman who died with her infant son during childbirth has become one of the most revered sites in Havana's Cementerio de Cristóbal Colón for the story behind it. The legend goes that she was buried with the baby at her feet; then years later, her grieving husband had the tomb opened to discover the baby was now in her arms, as depicted in the statue atop the grave.

Florence Bernadine Rees's Grave, Richmond, Virginia

Florence Bernadine Rees

Richmond, Virginia 
In a cemetery also featuring the resting places of U.S. Presidents James Monroe and John Tyler as well as numerous Confederate leaders, a cast-iron statue of a Newfoundland dog draws a large amount of attention to the grave of Florence Bernadine Rees — a 2-year-old who died of scarlet fever during the Civil War.

Mark Twain's Grave, Elmira, New York
Jun Zhang/istockphoto

Mark Twain

Elmira, New York
"The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn" author Mark Twain was laid to rest alongside U.S. veterans and congressmen in Woodlawn Cemetery, a national historic landmark with its own history as a Confederate prison camp. Still, many visitors come first and foremost to see the headstone and adjacent monument honoring one of America's most respected and enduring authors and humorists.

Frank Sinatra Grave

Frank Sinatra

Cathedral City, California 
"The Best Is Yet to Come," declares the headstone of legendary New Jersey-born jazz singer Frank Sinatra, who suffered a heart attack in 1998 and was buried in Desert Memorial Park near Palm Springs. He remains a big draw in a cemetery of many distinguished deceased, although his inscription mentions only two accomplishments: "Beloved Husband and Father."

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LGBT Veterans Memorial, Cathedral City - Kodachrome - 2001 (1)
LGBT Veterans Memorial, Cathedral City - Kodachrome - 2001 (1) by Ron Gilbert (CC BY-ND)

LGBT Veterans Memorial

Cathedral City, California 
After visiting with Ol' Blue Eyes or Sonny Bono, see the nation's first memorial specifically honoring LGBT veterans. Opened on Memorial Day 2001, the obelisk commemorates the contributions of the gay and transgender Americans who served the military with a plaque featuring an engraving of a bald eagle. 

Related: 30 Vintage Photos of Patriotic Places Across America

Princess Diana grave
Princess Diana grave by Ruta Stankeviciene (CC BY)

Princess Diana

Althorp, England
Princess Diana was mourned by the world upon her tragic death in 1997, and buried on an island in a lake called The Oval within the Spencer family estate. The public is only allowed to visit the island once a year during the summer, where they can view her grave and walk along a path lined with 36 birch trees, which symbolize the years of her short life.

Jamaica 2009
Jamaica 2009 by cribogs (CC BY)

Bob Marley

Nine Mile, Jamaica
Reggae innovator and cultural icon Bob Marley also died at 36, and was buried in his native Jamaica, where his birthday was declared a national holiday following his death from cancer. For four days around Feb. 6, thousands of fans from Jamaica and abroad gather at the Bob Marley Mausoleum for a music festival at the site of both the singer's birthplace and final resting place.

Elvis Presley's Grave, Memphis, Tennessee

Elvis Presley

Memphis, Tennessee 
Long-known as "the King of Rock and Roll," Elvis Presley and his mother, Gladys, were moved from their original graves in Forest Hills Cemetery due to persistent grave-tampering, so today they find their final resting place at Graceland, the singer's opulent former home and present-day tourist attraction.

Marilyn Monroe's Grave, Los Angeles, California

Marilyn Monroe

Los Angeles
A silver-screen sex symbol turned into a tragic figure by her death at the age of 36, Marilyn Monroe occupies Crypt 24 of Westwood Memorial Park. The site bears only her name and years of life, but fans pay tribute by leaving flowers and lipstick smears. Now, visitors to Monroe's grave will get to see two celebrity burial sites at once. Playboy founder Hugh Hefner, who died in 2017, was buried in the crypt next to Monroe's. Monroe was the centerfold in the first issue of the magazine that launched a worldwide media empire.

James Joyce's grave
James Joyce's grave by Madolan Greene (CC BY-NC-SA)

James Joyce

Zurich, Switzerland
Though he may be the most prominent author in all of Irish literature, James Joyce went into self-exile from his politically embattled homeland in 1902 and died without returning in 1941. He was buried in a plot at the Fluntern Cemetery beside his wife and child, all watched over by a small statue of the celebrated writer.

john belushi's grave
john belushi's grave by Jeana Costa (CC BY)

John Belushi

Chilmark, Massachusetts 
Fitting the comedian and "Saturday Night Live" star's boisterous reputation in life, John Belushi's headstone looks a little like a Halloween decoration, and bears the proud inscription: "I may be gone, but Rock and Roll lives on." A more humble stone bearing only the family name lies nearby in the Chilmark Cemetery on Martha's Vineyard.

President John F. Kennedy's Grave, Arlington, Virginia

President John F. Kennedy

Arlington, Virginia 
An eternal flame memorial marks the grave of President John F. Kennedy, whose assassination during his first term in 1963 became one of the most transformative tragedies in the latter-half of the 20th century. Kennedy's remains rest near those of his wife, Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, and his brothers Robert and Ted Kennedy.

Jean-Michel Basquiat's grave
Jean-Michel Basquiat's grave by Matt Kane (CC BY)

Jean-Michel Basquiat

Brooklyn, New York
Green-Wood Cemetery is the final resting place of distinguished figures such as composer Leonard Bernstein and politician Boss Tweed, but most visitors come to pay homage to homegrown street artist Jean-Michel Basquiat, who died of a heroin dose in 1988 at 27 years old. His headstone is frequently decorated with flowers, arts supplies and cigarette lighters left by grieving fans.

Alexander Hamilton's Grave, New York, New York

Alexander Hamilton

New York 
After dying in a duel with then-Vice President Aaron Burr, America's first treasury secretary Alexander Hamilton was buried in the Trinity Churchyard of Lower Manhattan. Though it remains the only active cemetery in Manhattan, the cemetery is also the final resting place of many other American statesmen and veterans, dating back to the church's founding in 1697.

Johnny Ramone
Johnny Ramone by Yvette (CC BY-NC-ND)

Johnny Ramone

Los Angeles 
A statue of the pioneering punk guitarist jams atop Johnny Ramone's permanent resting place in Hollywood Forever Cemetery, which holds an annual memorial tribute to benefit a cancer research. While there, visitors can also pay their respect to well-known showbiz figures like Anton Yelchin, Mickey Rooney, or Mel Blanc, the "Looney Tunes" voice-actor whose tombstone reads simply, "That's All Folks."

Robert Frost's Grave, Bennington, Vermont
Robert Frost's Grave, Bennington, Vermont by Nheyob (CC BY)

Robert Frost

Bennington, Vermont 
Poet Robert Frost is buried with his family in the verdant setting of the Old Bennington Cemetery. The influential writer's name sits at the top of the Frost family headstone, along with a brief quote from one of his works, "I had a lover's quarrel with the world."

John Lennon's Grave, New York, New York

John Lennon

New York 
Easily one of the most important songwriter and rock musicians of all-time thanks in large part to his membership in The Beatles, John Lennon was murdered in Manhattan, and his ashes scattered in an area of Central Park now known as Strawberry Fields. Buskers play Beatles songs, and fans leave flowers on an "Imagine" memorial in the park and on the steps of his former home, the Dakota apartments.

Freddie Mercury's Memorial, Montreux, Switzerland

Freddie Mercury

Montreux, Switzerland
No one knows where Freddie Mercury's ashes are buried, except his former partner Mary Austin, who buried them. Everyone else can pay their respects to the singer and Queen frontman at his impressive memorial statue overlooking Lake Geneva in Montreux, where Mercury spent many of his final days. Fans also turned the outside walls of his Garden Lodge mansion in London to a public shrine with graffiti messages dedicated to the deceased.

James Dean's Grave, Fairmount, Indiana
Katherine Welles/shutterstock

James Dean

Fairmount, Indiana 
James Dean was already an influential actor and icon of teenage disillusionment by the time of his death in a car accident in 1955, at the age of 24. He's buried beneath a simple headstone often covered with admirers' kiss-marks in the Park Cemetery near his Indiana hometown, where an annual festival is held in his honor every September.

Sacagawea's Grave
Sacagawea's Grave by Katharine Jaruzelski (CC BY)


Fort Washakie, Wyoming 
It's uncertain whether Sacagawea, the Shoshone woman who served as a guide for the Lewis and Clark expedition, died in 1812 or 1884, and it's just as uncertain if it's really her buried beneath the grave-marker bearing her name in the Sacajawea Cemetery in Wyoming's Wind River reservation. Either way, the site is worth a stop to see her headstone alongside those of her family.

Granary Burying Ground, Boston, Massachusetts
Marcio Jose Bastos Silva/shutterstock

Granary Burying Ground

Dating to 1660 but still only Boston's third-oldest cemetery, the Granary Burying Ground in the heart of this historically significant city holds the graves of enduring American Revolution heroes and Declaration of Independence signers like Paul Revere, Samuel Adams, John Hancock, Crispus Attucks, and Robert Paine. Also look for a granite obelisk made from the same quarry as the Bunker Hill Monument, dedicated to the relatives of Benjamin Franklin.

Hope Cemetery, Barre, Vermont
Hope Cemetery, Barre, Vermont by btvbill (CC BY)

Hope Cemetery

Barre, Vermont 
As well as being the resting place of more than 10,000 souls, this 65-acre cemetery in the city that bills itself the "Granite Capital of the World" is also a sculpture gallery of original, personalized works by the stonecutters of Barre. Stone depictions of a racecar, a biplane flying near Cloud 9, and a motorcycle approaching the pearly gates are just a few of the whimsical tributes to those passed.

Fort Rosecrans Cemetery, San Diego, California
Stefano Panzeri/shutterstock

Fort Rosecrans Cemetery

San Diego 
Shaded with native Torrey pines and surrounded by waters of the Pacific and San Diego Bay, Fort Rosecrans Cemetery features only neat rows of white marble headstones bearing the names of more than 113,000 veterans and their dependents. The national cemetery and California historical landmark is a humbling 77-acre site open to visitors from sunrise to sunset.

Bonaventure Cemetery, Savannah, Georgia
Nick Fox/shutterstock

Bonaventure Cemetery

Savannah, Georgia 
This beautiful cemetery became world famous thanks to its role in John Berendt's bestselling true-crime novel "Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil." Though the Bird Girl statue featured on the book's cover was removed due to vandalism, visitors can explore the verdant grounds to see other ornate mausoleums and angel sculptures.

Merry Cemetery, Săpânţa, Romania

Merry Cemetery

Săpânţa, Romania
This Romanian town has been finding colorful ways to pay tribute to its dead since 1935, when artist Stan Ioan Pătraş began the tradition of making bright-colored crosses as headstones, each with poetry and images telling of the deceased's life and accomplishments. The opulent headstones are beautiful, and the inscriptions are often hilarious, revealing dirty secrets and odd foibles the deceased had in life.

Okunoin, Wakayama Prefecture, Japan
Iris van den Broek/shutterstock


Wakayama Prefecture, Japan
More than 100 temples make up Japan's largest cemetery, a sacred forested site where Buddhists frequently make pilgrimages. In addition to monuments honoring the souls of termites and puffer fish used for culinary purposes, there's the mausoleum of Kōbō-Daishi, founder of Shingon Buddhism, illuminated by an awe-inspiring 10,000 lanterns.

Old Jewish Cemetery, Prague, Czech Republic

Old Jewish Cemetery

Prague, Czech Republic
There are at least 12,000 headstones and 100,000 bodies buried in this overcrowded Jewish cemetery in Prague, where the soil beneath the overlapping graves contains up to 12 layers of bodies. The cemetery dates back to the 15th century.

Xoxocotlan Cemetery in Daytime (1)
Xoxocotlan Cemetery in Daytime (1) by maskirovka77 (CC BY)

Xoxocotlán Cemetery

Oaxaca, Mexico
This southern Mexico cemetery comes alive every year for the annual Day of the Dead celebrations, when Oaxacans gather to drink mescal and decorate the graves with marigolds, candles, and food to welcome the spirits of lost loved ones. But even outside of the post-Halloween vigils, the historic graveyard is a humbling and beautiful burial place.

South Park Street Cemetery, Kolkata, India
Matyas Rehak/shutterstock

South Park Street Cemetery

Kolkata, India
Founded in 1767, this cemetery of overgrown tropical vegetation contains the final resting places of the British raj, the former colonial rulers who were honored in death with Gothic-style monuments. Look for the tomb of Major-General Charles Stuart, one of the few British rulers to embrace Hindu culture. His burial place is built to resemble a Hindu temple surrounded by stone deity sculptures.

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