It was the first day in my Budapest adventure, when the sun came out and I felt spring. The clouds were intense and the crows were thick, yet the Kerepesi cemetery was empty. It was the last stop on my "creepy and weird" bucket list (our hostel host called it this) before we left Europe. Kerepesi, the oldest cemetery in Budapest, is known for its huge ass statues and landscape.
It is also rumored to be one of the most haunted cemeteries in the world.
The history of Budapest is a sad one, which is paralleled by the cemetery's footprint. Kerepesi was closed in 1952 due to damage from WWII while the communists also interjected up some heavy propaganda. In 1953, some of the cemetery was sold to a rubber factory.
There was a special area supposedly for those who committed suicide or were executed.
Also a HUGE factor to remember was that the communist party ruled Hungary until 1989. This is sad because there is obvious evidence of two terror regimes coming through.
A massive cartoon-like Communist statue cast shadows over rose gardens, while an older gentleman with a baby sat on a beach and cried, looking up at the horrific symbol.
Extremely emotional sculptures saturate the cemetery.
I also saw some older articles online that claimed this cemetery was a holding ground for corpses and dying civilians during the war. I searched around and found old images of bodies stacked along the stone hallways, circled by faceless statues of men. I could not determine if the images were authentic.
This mausoleum was eroding from the war, today it is falling over and caving in. Warning tape surrounds the perimeter.
The cemetery is also known for its massive arcades (this is where the corpses were supposedly stored) which emulate the style of Italian cemeteries.
The tomb is located on the inside of this massive monument. The József Tihamér Antall monument was the burial of the first Hungarian Prime Minister, elected democratically after the fall of the Communist party. He died in 1993.
As a summary of this trip to Kerepesi Cemetery, allow for a half day, I also recommend renting a bike in Budapest to get around. People bike all along the water and in the cemetery. Please be respectful, this cemetery is still recovering from the two terror regimes: Communists, Jews and Christians etc. are all intertwined.
Beautiful eerie erosion..
Metro: Line 2 Nagyvárad tér
Moss creeps around the wings of William Wetmore's Angel of Grief.
Lonely and overgrown iron and stone
Behind here are the train tracks and local homes
Random buckets lay around the base of monuments in an attempt to clean them
You can walk up these massive steps and view the cemetery.
Just a sample of the amazing heights some of these monuments reach
I am in love with the random pathways. I have also noticed that Europe has a lot these "balls" of green in the trees. I saw this in Paris, Innsbruk and now here.
Cemetery floral shop