Saturday, September 19, 2009

Necro- tourism in San Salvador

San Salvador has a new campaign to promote a famous cemetery as a tourism site. The cemetery "Los Ilustres" is the burial place of many prominent historical and cultural figures from El Salvador's past. The cemetery is filled with ornate and often grandiose tombs of famous Salvadorans and is located in the historic center of San Salvador. A recent press release from the Tourism Ministry described the promotion of the cemetery including nighttime tours of the tombs in a form of "necro-tourism."

You can do your own tour of the cemetery online. There is a multimedia presentation from EL Faro is here. Photographer Rene Aquiluz has a collection of photos from the cemetery here. Another photo gallery can be found at this link. You can also take a guided tour at the online forum Skyscraper City here.


El-Visitador said...

One has to be pretty out of one's mind to be visiting the downtown cemetery at night.

It is very dangerous to visit by day. I strongly recommend people stay away.

Salvi_Alchemist said...

Not quite as historical like a St. Louis Cemetery in New Orleans, but I can see this sort of thing appealing to some people. And I wouldnt know about the safety concerns in that area.

Mike said...

The cemetery is perfectly fine to visit during the day, certainly more so than many isolated rural cemeteries or other parts of el centro - like most everywhere else there are armed guards posted at all the entrances, and a number of groundskeepers (as well as other cemetery-goers) seem to make frequent rounds.

I don't know about parking, though.

Ethan S. James said...

Los Ilustres is not "perfectly fine" to be visiting during the day or any other time. I have photographed and witnessed murders on every single corner from Mercado 10 to three blocks past Los Illustres in EVERY DIRECTION. Gunshots to the head. 13 shots to the body. Murdered children. The whole nine yards.
Until El Salvador solves its murder problem, no part of El Centro will be safe. The area around Los Ilustres is one of the worst.

Mauricio said...

As we all know we do have some gang issues in El Salvador, but most of them are killings between the same gang members, Myself I had gone over 5 times to "los ilustres" cementery and let me tell u all, its one of me most peaceful and quiet places in downtown San Salvador, sure there are issues to work around the cementery, however you have to remember that violence can be seen on a daily basis on every country in the world, we just happen to have a "stigma" in our society that makes outsiders think that El Salvador is one of the most violent countries when in reality, Guatemala and Honduras among other Latin american countries have an even bigger issue with delinquency arm robbery and killings, I really dont agree with "El Visitador" and I actually encourage him to come here and take a look at our new tourism project "pueblos vivos", where we actually do nighttime tourism to nearby small towns and even downtown parks and churches... I guess the only thing that I can say is "if you haven´t been here lately, then think twice before leaving a post"