London/Guayaquil – The National Institute for Cultural Heritage is offering visitors to Ecuador four different theme tours through the historic cemetery in Guayaquil. The cemetery, known as the Cemeterio General de Guayaquil, was founded in 1823 and is the final resting place of many important figures in Ecuador’s cultural, political, music and art scenes. During the tours, which bear distinguished names like “Memories – The Angel’s Flight” and “In the Shadow of the Last Verse,” visitors can experience the architecture of the sumptuous mausoleums that jut up among graves festooned with idols and row after row of burial niches.
The 15-hectare (37-acre) cemetery is home to more than 700,000 graves, including a mausoleum that dates back to 1856. Approximately five hectares (12.4 acres) of the plot were named an Ecuadorian cultural heritage site in 2003.
The “Under the Heavens of Memory” tour guides visitors through 18 different areas of the cemetery including the graves of author Enrique Gil Gilberto and Eloy Alfaro, two-time Ecuadorian president in the 19th and 20th centuries.
The tour “On the Trail of Eternity” highlights 12 spots in the cemetery. It tells the story of writer José Joaquín de Olmedo, who was born in Guayaquil and became leader of the declared Free Province of Guayaquil.
For more information on the tour times, routes and reservations, please visit: http://especiales.elcomercio.com/infografias/2011/07/cementerio/Index.html