"Are you guys crazy?! You shouldn't go to The Cementerio General del Sur, you will risk your safety." That's what everybody told us when we announced that we were going to a guided visit to one of the most dangerous places in Caracas... Well, it's quite beautiful too, in its own creepy way!
The Cementerio General del Sur is located at the south of Caracas, but due to its closeness with some pretty dangerous slums, it’s a place extremely dangerous and has been transformed into a limited-access site and feared by most of the population.
However, this place houses important, great and artistic monuments such as Mausoleum of President Joaquín Crespo and other beautiful tombs.
While you’re walking through the Necropolis, you can feel the pain of the mourners expressed through the sculptures, mausoleums and tombs — it can be a beautiful and grievous experience.
Also, you find the tombs of popular characters, like Victorio Ponce, Ismaelito (La Corte Malandra) and María Francia: their worshippers go to their tombs to pay promises fulfilled.
Unfortunately, you can see graves desecrated and the abandonment of many areas of the cemetery, as they are close to the proximity of one of the many dangerous slums of Caracas. But, we should note that a group of people are working for a secure access to the Cementerio General del Sur, to restore it the same way it was less than two decades ago.
There is a guided tour through the most important tombs. It is organized by the Alcaldía de Caracas, through the Heritage Route Program, it is conducted every Monday morning, accompanied by specialized guides and police.
It´s an unique opportunity to get to know this forbidden place and the story of a country through its pain.