Since 1995, I’ve been fortunate to experience significant travel: first as green graduate student on my first (of many) trips to Chile; followed by the opportunity to live and work in 3 countries on 3 continents inside a span of 10 years. I didn’t give much thought about their relative importance at the time, but I’m lucky to have visited a number of UNESCO World Heritage Sites (WHS).
The Skogskyrkogården, or Woodland Cemetery, is located about 15 minutes by metro, south from central Stockholm in Sweden. For its unique design, aesthetic character, and expanse both vertically and horizontally, the forest cemetery was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1994.
I had read that Greta Garbo was buried here, and I wanted to find out for myself.
Born Greta Lovisa Gustafsson in Stockholm in 1905, Greta Garbo was discovered at the age of 17. She was honoured with four Academy Award nominations for her work which transitioned successfully from silent-films to “talkies” in what is now considered the “Golden Age” of filmmaking. Even now, she is considered one of the most beautiful women and one of the most important actresses ever to appear on the big screen. After only 27 films between 1924 and 1941, she retired to private life, away from celebrity spotlight. After her death in 1990 and subsequent legal issues, her cremated remains were buried in 1999 at Skogskyrkogården in the city where she was born.
In the 1955 biography “Garbo” by John Bainbridge, Garbo is quoted as saying:
I never said, ‘I want to be alone.’ I only said, ‘I want to be left alone.’ There is all the difference.
To reach the forest cemetery from Stockholm’s city centre, take the Tunnelbana green metro line 18 southbound in the direction “Farsta strand” to the stop called “Skogskyrkogården”. There is no charge or fee to enter Skogskyrkogården. Garbo’s grave is located south of the Skogskappellet (Woodland Chapel).
More from Stockholm
The publicity photo above of Greta Garbo is by Clarence Sinclair Bull for MGM in 1939 (Wiki). I made the remaining photos above on 25 June 2008. This post is published on Fotoeins Fotografie at fotoeins DOT com as http://wp.me/p1BIdT-vP.