Lychakivske Cemetery

Lychakivske Cemetery information

Lviv , Ukraine
vul Pekarska
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admission 15uah
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Don't even think of leaving town until you've seen this amazing cemetery only a short tram ride from the centre. This is the Père Lachaise of Eastern Europe, with the same sort of overgrown grounds and Gothic aura as the famous Parisian necropolis (but containing less-well-known people). Laid out in the late 18th century, when Austrian Emperor Josef II decreed that no more burials could take place in churchyards, it's still the place Lviv's great and good are laid to rest.

Eagle eyes can try to spot the graves of revered nationalist poet Ivan Franko, Soviet gymnastics legend Viktor Chukarin, early 20th-century opera star Solomiya Krushelnytska, and some 2000 Poles who died fighting Ukrainians and Bolsheviks from 1918 to 1920. There's also a memorial to the Ukrainian insurgent army (UPA), who fought for independence against both the Nazis and Soviets. But ultimately you needn't recognise a single soul to be moved by the mournful photos of loved ones, ornate tombstones and floral tributes.

A good strategy is to combine a trip to the cemetery and the Museum of Folk Architecture and Life. The cemetery is one stop past the stop for the open-air museum on tram 7.