This post was originally written for my old travel blog Dream Explore Wander on 15 October 2014.
While in Lisbon, taking the legendary tram 28 is every first time visitor’s dream. My plan for the day was to enjoy the vintage tram. I allowed myself to immerse in the gentle wind created while the tram moved, often it moved in a roller coaster style, making me jump a little. The tram tackled aisles that I wouldn’t think a tram would fit, but it did. Oh the excitement of tram 28!
I didn’t really know what I was going to see at the end of the line. When I reached the end of the route, I was a little confused in what I should do next. I wanted to take the same tram again going back, the ride left me a little hyper and excited. But just as I was about to board once more, in front of the simple tram station was a cemetery. And what does a cemetery lover does when they see a gorgeous looking cemetery? They go inside and explore.
The name of the cemetery is Cemetério dos Prazeres. The word “prazeres” means “pleasures” but let’s not get into any weird ideas. It was simply named after the name of the neighbourhood.
As I entered, I looked at the map and realised the many poets, singers and other famous Portuguese artists highlighted. Though I am not familiar with most of them, I was still intrigued.
A certain calmness took over me as I walked further inside. As if the loud, bustling, metropolitan feel of Lisbon faded, and I was left with tranquility.
I realised the cemetery was spacious and had large pavements, allowing visitors to walk easily.
In 1833, Lisbon was hit with a bad case of cholera, and a large cemetery was needed to bury the victims. Therefore Cemetério dos Prazeres was created, a cemetery for all, the rich and the poor.
At the front I could see more elaborate tombs, huge ones with “houses” or mausoleums. Some had amazing carved tombs and statues. This was signs of tombs for the rich. I could see some tombs had fresh flowers in bright red and yellow, adding colours to its faded tombstones.
The cemetery is well-preserved, clean and there was not one bit of that eerie element while I was there – just a simply stunning cemetery in the middle of cosmopolitan Lisbon.
If you are a cemetery lover like I am, this place is worth the visit. Sometimes you don’t have to travel far to getaway from a busy city, a tranquil cemetery like Cemetério dos Prazeres is often enough.
How I travelled there
Take tram 28 until the end of the line, cross the street and voilá, Cemetério dos Prazeres is right there!
Would you visit this place?