One of the many fascinating experiences resulting from Visiting St Helena is a trip to Long wood House, where Napoleon spent his last days when exiled to one of the world’s remotest island in the South Atlantic. The walk down, to what is the now-empty tomb, (His remains were later re interred in Paris) is fairly steep. In fact, the return journey is somewhat strenuous!
His Tomb is in a very tranquil setting. Most befitting after the turbulent life he had led!
Napoleon Bonaparte died in exile on St. Helena on 5th May 1821. In his will, Napoleon asked to be buried on the banks of the Seine, but the British Governor, Hudson Lowe, insisted he should be buried on St. Helena, in the Valley of the Willows (now Sane Valley). The Tomb is one of the 7 Wonders of Saint Helena
Lowe said the inscription should read “Napoleon Bonaparte”; Napoleon’s friends, Montholon and Bertrand, wanted the Imperial title “Napoleon” – by convention royalty were signed by their first names only. Unable to resolve the dispute the tomb was left nameless.
Napoleon’s body is no longer there – it was collected in 1840 by the Prince de Joinville, loaded onto the frigate Belle-Poule, which had been painted black for the occasion, taken back to France, and re-buried in L’Hotêl Les Invalides.
Like Longwood House, this is somewhere on St Helena which one has to visit. Napoleon’s erstwhile tomb, though itself simple, is in a picturesque setting. According to the sign on the padlocked gate at the top of the 750m grassy path leading down from the road to the site of the tomb, visits are only possible after prior registration with the island’s Tourist Information Office.
Don’t miss this extreme experience while visiting the Graveyards on safari to Saint Helena located south of the Atlantic Ocean.