The Mysterious Cats of the Montmartre Cemetery

Did you know there are about 50 friendly stray cats living in the Montmartre Cemetery?

They seem to love it there. They sun themselves atop the gravestones, wander among the the tombs, and do their best to hide from passing people.

But as this very cemetery is open for this second Paris lockdown, and as it’s within my 1km radius for exercise… I’ve been visiting it a lot.

The cemetery itself is fantastic, 10 hectares of fascinating gravestones and beautiful autumnal trees… but it’s the cats that intrigue me.

How did they get there? Who’s feeding them? How many are there?

All these questions and more are answered in today’s podcast episode. It features my exploration of this cemetery and even an interview with one of the cat ladies who keep this feline population in control.

There’s also music by some of the stars buried at the cemetery, and an eerie soundtrack from the ever-watching crows. I’m sure you’ll like this episode – listen below.

If it’s just pictures of cats you’re after then you’re in luck too. Further down is a gallery of cat pics, all taken on a walk this weekend, all snapped by Montmartre photographer Ben Simpson.

If you’re looking for much, much more info on the cemetery, its graves, and even the cats – in fact everything mentioned in the episode and more – then sign up to become a Patreon member and unlock all the extras.

Click the images below for a closer look.

And lastly, here’s the episode again below. Don’t forget to subscribe to the podcast for more like this every week. And keep a close eye on social media channels for more from this cemetery this week (especially Instagram and Facebook).

11 thoughts on “The Mysterious Cats of the Montmartre Cemetery

  1. Such a fun episode! Cats and more Cats! We have been to St Vincent Cemetery (a difficult search) and now have to add Montmartre Cemetery to our next visit. I really enjoy the music interludes between vignettes and the delightful interview at the end 🙂

  2. This is wonderful — I was transported to Montmartre Cemetery. This story also reminds me so much of the beautiful novel “Fresh Water for Flowers” by Valerie Perrin. Thank you

  3. I really enjoyed the podcast and love the photos. You can tell they are well taken care of just by the texture of their fur. And I must say they even come across as being Parisian LOL. Cats have major attitude but they just seem to have a little extra sass.

    I’m glad you were about to interview one of the caregivers so all of us have more insight about the history behind these beautiful animals.

    Oh did you ever find the slugs?

  4. I love this
    What an înteresting subject
    I adore these beautiful chats xx I would love to donate if you can send details. I am in the Landes area

    1. As I said in the pod, their donations page is pre-historic, but explore it by searching ecole du chats online 🙂 Good luck!

  5. Thanks for taking me along on your autumn walk this morning while I walked in my local California park. Have you seen the documentary “Kedi” about the cats of Istanbul? It’s a delight! I highly recommend it! Thanks for keeping me entertained and distracted from the worries of every day life. Beautiful photos!

  6. Thanks for this great idea as a confinement activity! The cemetery is within my 1km radius too 🙂 will definitely check it out this weekend. Great shots of the cats by the way!

  7. You need to do a calendar or postcards of the beautiful cats Oliver. Perhaps a new book written by you and Lina! Great photos!

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