Kultur- und Themenführungen - Wien Fremdenführer - Wien

Cultural walking tours - Vienna

Guided tours - Vienna



  The Central Cemetery




Since the end of the 18th century more and more of the historical cemeteries within the town walls had to be closed for hygienic reasons; therefore the city council decided to create a new burial place for all citizens and all religions in the peripheral suburb of Simmering. After long political debates the Central Cemetery was finally inaugurated in 1874. With more than 2 million graves it belongs to the largest graveyards in the world.

The numerous tombs of honour dignify the place and bear witness to the great cultural significance of the cemetery. Particularly charming is the musicians’ corner with the memorial tombs of Mozart, Schubert, Beethoven and Johann Strauss. Also worth seeing is the ancient Jewish section near gate number 1; falling into ruin today it still proves the great days of Vienna’s Jewish life and culture during the last decades of the Austro-Hungarian Monarchy. In the middle of the cemetery can be found a masterpiece of art nouveau: the Church of Saint Charles Borromeo, built in 1908-10 by Max Hegele. The Central Cemetery is also a unique natural park offering refuge to a great variety of animals and different species of plants.




 The tour starts in Simmeringer-Hauptstrasse at gate number 1, the entrance to the Ancient Jewish section of the cemetery. Walking through romantic avenues past lavishly flower studded graves we get to the elegant Arcades where the wealthy barons and bankers of the period of the Ringstrasse are buried. A few minutes later we will come to the Tombs of Honour (“Ehrengräber”) of the immortal Austrian musicians. A great highlight is also Hegele’s Karl Borromeo Church (“Karl-Borromäus-Kirche” or: “Karl-Lueger-Kirche”) which contains remarkable works of art nouveau handicraft. Leaving the church we will visit important Memorials telling us about the crucial events of recent Austrian history: the monument to the victims of the civil riots in 1927 and 1934 as well as the memorials recalling the victims of Fascism, Nazism and the two World Wars. Passing the Babies’ Cemetery and the Anatomic Section dedicated to those who gave their body for medical research we will visit the grave of the most important Austrian rock star: Hans Hölzel called Falco. The tour ends at the main entrance (Tor number 2) whose Monumental Gate was also built by Max Hegele.



Practical information


MEETING POINT: gate number 1 Simmeringer-Hauptstrasse 234. To get there take the tram number 71 from the opera and get off at “Zentralfriedhof 1. Tor”. You can also use the underground U3 from “Stephansplatz” till the last station “Simmering” and then the tram 71 or 6 to “Zentralfriedhof 1. Tor”. Calculate about 30 minutes from the town centre!

DURATION: 2 hours.

END OF THE TOUR: “Zentralfriedhof 2. Tor” (main entrance). In case of bad weather an umbrella or raincoat is useful.