The Paris Catacombs (Catacombes de Paris) is an underground ossuary, a maze of tunnels and crypts underneath the city of Paris, where Parisians had been burying the dead for almost 30 years. The catacombs are located near the Place Denfert-Rochereau, which was the former city gate. They hold the skeletons of roughly 6 million people.
Before the construction of the underground cemetery in the mid-18th century, the residents of Paris buried the dead on the outskirts of the city and, later, around the churches, in parish cemeteries within city limits. Soon however, with the rapid growth of the city's population, the cemeteries ran out of space. Moreover, the ground water near the cemeteries often washed over the graves and contaminated spread disease to the residents living nearby. Thus, between 1786 and 1788, the bones from the Paris cemetries were moved to the underground quarries. The bones of Parisians were stored in the catacombs until 1814. During World War II, the Paris Catacombs were used by the members of the French resistance as a hiding place from the Germans and parts of their tunnels were also used during that time by the German soldiers as a bunker.
The Paris Catacombs became a tourist attraction already in the early 19th century, but had not been opened to the general public until 1867. Today, they are one of the city's most popular attractions.
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|Neighbourhood||Petit-Montrouge (14th Arrondissement - l'Observatoire)|
|Price||normal : 7.00 child : 0.00 (age <7) youth : 3.50 (age 7-14) retired : 5.50 (age 60<)|
|Geographical coordinates||48.8341906, 2.3324436|
|Address||75014 Paris, Place Denfert-Rochereau|
|Construction dates||1810 -|
|More information||official website|