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Highgate Cemetery – Our best Halloween in years!

UK

, 2019

What better way to celebrate Halloween than exploring a Victorian graveyard, learning some gruesome history and refreshing ourselves in a village pub or two?


Circle of Lebanon, West Cemetery

WHY HIGHGATE CEMETERY FOR HALLOWEEN?

Cemeteries have always been an interest of ours. Sound strange? Maybe we are! But for us they are serene, peaceful places that are rich in history and natural beauty. Within our first year of dating we explored several – including St Marys Church, Scarborough where Anne Brontë is buried.

It’s one of the Magnificent 7 – these splendid graveyards came about when the small churchyards in London were full. So a massive relocation process occurred in the middle of the 19th Century to these seven Gothic Revival wonders.

Highgate Cemetery is actually 2 distinct areas. Highgate East – £4 admission and you can wander around at your leisure, there are lots of famous graves and beautiful areas.

Highgate West is accessible only by guided tour. These tours are in groups and can be booked on the day or in advance. We booked in advanced to ensure a place on Halloween and it was £12 (but also included entrance to the East Cemetery).

THE SURPRISING FACTS

We won’t want to give away all the amazing stories we heard on the guided tour, these tours are constructed with a lot of love and hard work – everyone should go! But in short:

• Egyptian Avenue, the Circle of Lebanon and the Catacombs are the finest backdrop to a Halloween day out you’ll ever get!
• Karl Marx isn’t the only famous grave you’ll see, but George Eliot, Douglas Adams, Patrick Caulfield and lots more.
George Michael‘s grave is in West, but you won’t see it.
• Bram Stoker was inspired by Highgate Cemetery when writing Dracula
• In the 70’s lots of damage was done as the site fell into disrepair
Satanic night gatherings took place

After a sublime afternoon of walking amongst the graves and History of London, we walked the same steep hills into the Village of Highgate the Victorians would have. We were delighted by how the villagers really get into the Halloween spirit!

Highgate Village was incredible! Lots of lively pubs, most boasting hundreds of years of history, ghost stories and great food. We easily settled into a nice place as the darkness set in…

Highgate Vet was amongst the numerous businesses getting into the spooky spirit
Even the Dentist had a lively display!

We’d never seen so many children and adults dressed up trick or treating. Highgate had such a lovely community spirit, with lots of history and tradition. We recommend giving it a visit a Halloween, or any other time!