- Via Case Nuove, 2, 03043 Caira FR, Italy
Located close to Cassino in the village of Caira, the German war cemetery occupies an entire hill, hosting more than 20,000 soldiers who died in Southern Italy, excluding Sicily.
The German war cemetery of Cassino is situated 3 kilometers north of Cassino in the village of Caira. It covers an entire hill and it holds the rests of 20,027 German soldiers who died in the South of Italy, excluding Sicily. Many died in the Battle of Salerno, following the Allied landings there, as well as on the Adriatic side of the Apennines, in the Battle of Ortona and in the ones for Cassino.
The works for the building of the German War cemetery started in 1959, after the bodies of soldiers had been buried in various cemeteries, and completed in 1964.
A statue of a male and female figure at the entrance of the cemetery symbolises mourning, ideally of the families of the young dead ones. Seven elliptical terraces compose the cemetery and are connected by two main paths, while a bronze cross elevates on the top of the hill. Behind it are other burials, including the unknown soldiers. A lamp, donated by Pope Paul VI, stands on a pedestal. From the top of the hill, a panoramic view of the then battlefields can be enjoyed.
The region of Lazio in central Italy was the scene of heavy fighting during WWII: here the battles of Monte Cassino and Anzio were fought before the Allies could capture the capital of Rome. Recall the landings of Anzio and
Recall the course of the Italian Campaign of WWII while exploring a country immensely rich in culture and history. Start your journey in Sicily, where the first Allied landings occurred in July 1943. Then walk through war cemeteries in Catania
The Allied campaign of Monte Cassino was fought in four phases between January and May 1944. The town of Cassino was a key stronghold on the Gustav Line, the German defence line in Central Italy designed to prevent Allied advance towards Rome. The Allies suffered about 55,000 casualties, the Germans 20,000.
The Polish Military Field of Honour at Monte Cassino holds the graves of 1,052 soldiers of the 2nd Polish Army Corps who died in the Battle of Monte Cassino, fought from 17 January until 18 May 1944. The cemetery also holds the grave of the Polish commander General Anders who died in London in 1970.
The abbey of Monte Cassino was founded in the 6th century by St. Benedict. During the Second World War it formed a key part of the German Gustav Line. On 15 February 1944 the abbey was bombed by the Allies who wrongly believed that it was being used as a German observation post.
The War Cemetery in Cassino lies 139 km south-east of Rome. It contains the graves of 4,271 Commonwealth servicemen of the Second World War. The Cassino Memorial stands within the cemetery and commemorates over 4,000 Commonwealth servicemen who took part