Forest Lawn: Eden on Earth - Atlas Obscura

Glendale, California

Forest Lawn: Eden on Earth

Spend an afternoon in eternity.

Nearly one hundred years ago, Dr. Hubert Eaton set out to reimagine the cemetery.

Instead of an “unsightly, depressing stoneyard,” Eaton (or “The Builder” as he came to be known) envisioned Forest Lawn as a soothing and optimistic place, more in line with his personal religious beliefs. The result was a dreamlike maze of fine art, Christianity, and patriotism.

This April, join Adam Papagan and Atlas Obscura as we explore Dr. Eaton’s surreal take on the afterlife. Forest Lawn is bursting with epic paintings, renaissance masterpieces, and replicas of famous churches from across Europe, set against a beautiful Glendale hillside. Forest Lawn Memorial Park presents the ideal place to spend a day—or an eternity.

Adam Papagan is an artist, comedian, and talk show host from Los Angeles, California. His past projects include immersive video installations and collaborations with outsider musician David Liebe Hart. Adam is a professional tour guide and creator of The O.J. Tour and The RHOBH Tour. He is also host of The ASMR Talk Show.



  • Meet at the Hall of The Crucifixion/Resurrection: 34.128154, -118.245545
  • Rain or shine. Our tour includes some easy, flat walking outside between buildings, so wear a hat and comfortable shoes.
  • Plenty of free parking available onsite.
  • Photography is NOT allowed inside any of the buildings.
  • Please be respectful of the dead, their family members, and other mourners.
  • You must adhere to the Forest Lawn Visitors' Guide: no smoking, no picnicking, no pets, and no loitering. Please do not disturb wildlife (that means no feeding the birds).



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