The Catacombs of Paris (the “municipal Ossuary”) have been created at the end of the 18th century. The cemetery of Innocent had been used during nearly ten centuries and had become the origin of infection for all the inhabitants of the district.
From the first day of their creation, the Catacombs caused curiosity.
This is the official entrance to the 3,000km tunnel network that runs under much of the city of Paris. With public burial pits overflowing in the era of the Revolutionary Terror, the bones of six million people were transferred to the catacombes.
The bones of Marat, Robespierre and their cronies are packed in with wall upon wall of their fellow citizens. A damp, cramped tunnel takes you through a series of galleries before you reach the ossuary, the entrance to which is announced by a sign engraved in the stone: ‘Stop! This is the empire of death.’
The tour lasts approximately 45 minutes and the temperature in the tunnels is 14°C.
Catacombs of Paris
1, avenue of Colonel Henri Rol-Tanguy