Langemark Cemetery
Langemark Cemetery
4.5
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german WW1 cemetery
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4.5
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E17_KJ
London, UK1,270 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2020 • Solo
I’ve visited many Commonwealth military cemeteries, but never before one maintained by the German government. It was just as peaceful and sombre, and well maintained. I was interested to see it was also the final resting place of several British soldiers.
Written 19 July 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

StoneFeather_H
Eupen, Liege, Belgium30 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Nov 2014 • Couples
Reading some of the other reviews of the Langemark Friedhof, it is clear that many visitors have rather missed the point. Under the terms of the Versailles Treaty, the Germans were forbidden from honouring their war dead in the conventional manner (upright headstones with crosses, etc.). This is the reason for the dour and sombre atmosphere of this place, with its row on row of flat, granite plaques, each one covering a common grave for four, twenty, a hundred or even more dead young men. Personally, I found great peace here among the dripping trees of November, meditating on these ruthlessly exploited youngsters and their arrogant, foolish commanders. Do not look for glory here, do not look for honour. Even the squat teutonic crosses that are the cemetery's sole "ornament" are harsh reminders of the kind of "gods" to whom these lambs were sacrificed: industry and the horrific progress of man's inhumanity to man. At least the soldiers of the Commonwealth, France and Belgium had some inkling of what they were fighting for. Even though they sang: "We're 'ere because we're 'ere because we're 'ere because we're 'ere", at least they knew that without them, the values-based culture we think of as European civilisation would likely vanish. German soldiers had no such moral support, no such justification. They could only wonder: "What the **** am I doing, dying in this god-forsaken ditch?" The essence of 1914-18 comes together in this place, of all places. What a deeply, deeply sad and utterly futile occupation is war.
Written 24 November 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

eloorg
Hampshire, UK525 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2020
In Langemark cemetery, around 42,000 Germans are buried from World War One. The headstones bear the names of those dead, and often unknown soldier. When visiting, I noted the difference between how the allies and the Germans buried their dead.

At Langemark cemetery, there were instances of 16 bodies buried in one grave and sometimes 14 too. It is saddenning to see so many headstones bering the names of so many young men.

When visiting the ground was damp, so walking shoes are advsied.
Written 20 February 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

JeffandLin
Sheffield, UK78 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2016 • Couples
Although not well known here in the UK, Langemark is known as Germany’s Verdun. Thousands and thousands of German soldiers lost their lives here, and after such a catastrophic loss of life Langemark took on the same status for Germany as the Somme does for us.
This place means so much to the German people that tons of soil from the Langemark area were incorporated into the floor of the LangemarckHalle, the huge entrance hall to the 1936 Olympics, and the first place that Hitler chose to visit outside Germany at the outset of WW2 was this cemetery.
Unlike Commonwealth War Graves, German soldiers were mostly buried in mass graves, and the poignant new entrance tunnel to the site is meant to symbolise that. There are no rows of crosses like that of say, Tyne Cot, but every German soldier buried or lost in the salient has his name inscribed on the large metal obelisks that surround the centre of the cemetery.
A statue group of helmetless German soldiers stands, heads bowed watching over the burial ground, with a smattering of stone German Crosses (iron crosses) placed out among the trees.
Once, as a young soldier in Germany, I stopped in a forest clearing and found a German war memorial, and an old man sat on a bench nearby. As I was in uniform, I saluted the memorial and walked away.
As I did so, the gentleman stood up, took off his cap and said “Sie danken Ihnen junger mann. Wir sind alle Mutter Sohne. Nur die Mutter der Welt jemals Krieg stopped wieder gescheit stoppen"…..
'They thank you young man. We are all mothers sons, and only the mothers of the world will ever stop war happening again.’
Just as at Tyne Cot, Birr Cross Roads, Wieltje Farm and other War Cemeteries across the Salient, many mothers sons lie here.
Langemarck is an intensely moving place to visit.
Please try and find the time.
Written 23 March 2016
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BigMickey1
Derbyshire24 contributions
1.0 of 5 bubbles
Sept 2015 • Friends
(September 2015) Only open to look at some pictures, as it is being refurbished. A 3 foot wall surrounds the actual cemetery. I was able to scale this and look at some of the graves. Most of them say "20 Unbekannte Deutsche Soldaten" (20 unknown German soldiers), showing that most of the 10,000 buried there lie unmarked. Very sad to think that they are unrecognised, even though they were our mortal enemies.
At the moment the road to Langemark is also being rebuilt, making access difficult. I believe this will be sorted by next year.
Written 22 September 2015
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snailkite
Northern Virginia, VA671 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Sept 2014 • Couples
Once in Langemark Village, follow the small black and white signs leading to "Soldatenfriedhof." The parking lot may be crowded because of the many tour buses now that we are at the centennial of the Great War. The Treaty of Versailles forbade Germany from using white markers for their military cemeteries, and the black stones in Langemark add pathos to this somber and tragic symbol of the war. Stone markers memorialize the mass graves. Some graves hold as few as six men; others hold thousands. Black basalt crosses, in sets of three, lend more horror to the cemetery than a sense of spirituality. Statues of soldiers mourning their fallen comrades stand watch over the visitors. The entryway recognizes the "student soldiers," a term often used by the public to recognize the young men who left university during the heady days of the beginning of WWI and joined the military. Their names are carved into stained wood which lines the walls. German bunkers also are on site. We visited during a somewhat warmer day and the smell of decay remains. Our visit to Ypres would not have been complete without this site.
We highly recommend following Chris Baker's "Ypres highlights in a day" at 1914-1918.net/guideypres1day.html. His easy directions, maps, and descriptions of the sites allows the tourist to visit the main sites in one day of driving.
Written 25 October 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

LordHafod
Swansea, UK769 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2014 • Friends
There are a few errors in previous posts, so I would like to put forward my views. The cemetery is not maintained by the Commonwealth War Graves Commision (CWGC) but the German War Graves association, known by it's abbreviated title the VDK. At the end of WW1, there were an estimated 210,000 German War Dead in Flanders, with 120,00 buried and 83,000 missing. As a defeated nation in economic ruins and the Treaty of Versailles articles on cemeteries enforced, the Germans did not have the means to bury their dead in the same way the Allies did, who founded the Imperial War Grave Commision during the war. It wasn't until Dr Siegfried Emmo Eulen established the VDK, a non political, privately funded organisation to look after German military graves abroad. Compared to the CWGC approach, of English Walled Gardens, with flowers, shrubs and trees, the German is that of the 'Heroes Woods' concept. The national tree of Germany the Oak, dominates the cemetery and the branches/ foliage ensures the cemetery is always in the shade. This gives a sombre , darker feel than the CWGC cemeteries but reflects the German view. In the 1950's when it was decided to close 120 German burial grounds, Langemark was one of 3 Collection cemeteries chosen, but the only one with sufficient room to accomodate the remains of 24,000 German dead to be buried in a mass grave ( Kameradgrab) 150 square metres, just after the entrance. The Bronze Wreath on the comrades grave translated says; ' I have called your name, you are mine' and below it, ' In this cemetery lie 44,061 German Soldiers of the 1914-1918 War.' The VDK, have subsequently identified 16,940 of the 24,000 remains. Amongst them are 2 British soldiers, Pte. Carlill and Lockley, commemorated on end left hand panels. The names of those identified in the mass grave are recorded on 68 bronze panels on stone blocks. The panels are in surname alphabetical order, with inner row no's 1 -34 clockwise and outer rows 35-68 anti clockwise. Recorded on panel 63 is Lt Werner Voss a German Air Ace, holder of the Pour Le Merite ( Blue Max) medal. Also buried in the mass grave is another Blue Max holder, Lt Erwin Boehme, whose name is missing off the panels. The entrance to the cemetery is Red Weser sandstone, resembling a bunker with the entrance porch'Totenburgen' or 'Fortress of the Dead' following Germanic tradition. The porch has 2 rooms, one with wooden panels inscribed with the names of those buried and the other a map of current and former cemeteries.The statue at the rear designed by Emil Krieger, was inspired by a newspaper photo showing a burial of a soldier from the 238 Reserve Infantry Regiment. The 3 Bunkers in the North end of the cemetery have been restored and linked by a line of Granite blocks with the names of Regiments that either fought in the area or supported the maintenance of the cemetery. The Grave markers , contain a number of burials and consist of flat stones. The basalt stone crosses , are symbolic and are derived from the VDK logo, which incorporates 5 intertwined crosses. A cemetery that definitely leaves an impression, especially if you visit Tyne Cot, nearby at Paschendaele ,the largest CWGC in the world . Reflect that Langemark has approximately 4 times the burials that Tyne Cot has. This is an overview, happy to answer queries.
Written 9 June 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Richard R
Prudhoe, UK593 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Sept 2019 • Solo
This is a German cemetery that also has two British soldiers. There is a mass grave of 25000+ and the two British soldiers in quite an austere cemetery. Make sure to listen to the recording of a German soldier talking about his part in a gas attack. The recording in on the right as you enter the cemetery from the car park... Blood chilling
Written 22 September 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Derek H
Freckleton, UK690 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2015 • Friends
Final resting place for more than 44,000 Germans of which 25,000 are interred in a mass grave and includes 3,000 student volunteers. Good parking and well set out.
Written 2 November 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

number1leadman
Lincoln, UK391 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2015 • Couples
A trip the battle fields would not be complete without take a trip to see the mass graves of the German soldiers. We had spent most of the day seeing the graves of the allied forces but now we were at the site of a mass burial at Langemark. As you enter through the arch you will pass two rooms either side of the entrance. One chamber bears the names of missing soldiers on oak panels; the other has a map carved on a wall showing of all the original German cemeteries in Belgium. There are over 44,000 soldiers buried in this cemetery. Over 7,000 of them are still unidentified. Unlike the gravestones of the allied soldiers the Germans are buried in numbers with their names engraved on a stone which is laid flat. There is a mass burial chamber under the square as you walk in, called the Kameradengrab. All those who were identified have their names engraved on the bronze plaques that stand upright around the outside edge of the square. The guide told us the reason why the Germans are mass buried was because both the Belgium and the French were reluctant to let the Germans have any land in which they could bury their dead. Unlike the allies both governments gave plots of land to the CWGC to honour those fallen in war. Langemark is a sombre place to visit and unlike the sight of white headstones all stood upright like they are ready to march out the Germans are laid flat like they are resting. The cemetery is not completely full of Germans there are a couple of English also in there and there resting place is marked by a small gold plaque. At the far end are a set of four bronze sculptures of mourning soldiers by Emil Krieger dating from 1956 and moved to their final position in 1984. A very sombre visit but one that feels is a must on a battlefield tour as you can see that death on a vast scale happened on both sides and not just one.
Written 27 March 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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Langemark Cemetery

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