2. Green-Wood Cemetery, Brooklyn, Kings County: 560,000 Interments

Within the 478 acres of land that make up Green-Wood Cemetery, more than 560,000 permanently inhabit the grounds, including notable people, such as composer Leonard Bernstein, Boss Tweed, Charles Ebbets and fine-artist Jean-Michel Basquiat, among others. These stars — along with the cemetery’s gorgeous landscape that made it the second most visited tourist attraction in the United States in the 1860’s (next only to Niagara falls) — has earned Green-Wood the reputation of being one of the most prestigious places to be buried.

Established in 1838, Green-Wood is also one of the first rural cemeteries in America. Along with this early foundation comes a rich history: so beautiful were the grounds of the cemetery that they actually inspired the founding of Prospect Park, and sparked the competition that resulted in the creation of Central Park by Frederick Law Olmsted.

Today, there are still many reasons to visit Green-Wood with a special highlight being a once-a-year tour of the accidental catacombs below the cemetery. Other permanent attractions include the above-ground architecture such as the wide array of mausoleums, as well as a statue of the Goddess Athena entitled Altar to Liberty. The statue, which sits at the highest point in the cemetery (Battle Hill), was commissioned to commemorate the Revolutionary War battle, The Battle of Brooklyn, that took place on Green-Wood’s grounds.

However, perhaps the most spectacular architectural site is Green-Wood Chapel. The chapel, done in the style of the Gothic Revival from 1912, was designed by the famous architectural firm Warren and Wetmore, which was also responsible for Grand Central Terminal and Chelsea Piers.