#lakes #bread #churches #folklore #honey
Taking pride in folklore and agriculture, Lithuania is not to be missed for its vibrant culture and heritage, namely religious art, wooden architecture, baroque and Jewish history.
Vilnius boasts the most wonderful architectural styles of Southern and Western Europe, Gothic and Renaissance, as well as the original “Lithuanian” Baroque, also called the last vivid flash of Baroque in Europe. During these periods, the dynamic silhouettes of the majority of very elegant churches and belfry towers emerged above the city panorama. The end of the 18th century enriched the capital with beautiful buildings in the Classicist style. The capital of Lithuania is the biggest northernmost and easternmost city of Europe with especially evident influence of Western cultures in its architectural harmony. In 1994 the Old Town of Vilnius was inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List.
Sometimes, even a whim can turn something into a symbol of the country standing for long centuries. Into the one which majesty and beauty impresses anyone who comes to this country. Trakai castle enveloped with legends, poems and lake waters, enchants with its extraordinary medieval history.
The lake town is the nickname of Trakai, the historical capital of Lithuania. It boasts not only the pride of the town but of the entire Lithuania – the only castle in Eastern Europe, built on the island.
he city boasts a compact, well-preserved and nurtured Old Town, which is a concentration of valuable cultural and architectural monuments including Kaunas Castle, Gothic Perkūnas House (The House of Thunder), Vytautas the Great and St. Gertrude Churches, Kaunas Town Hall, also called The White Swan, and a number of others. In addition, the city has interesting objects of engineering heritage, i.e. funiculars launched 70 years ago; one of these lifts people to the Aleksotas hill which, like the Insurrection Church, opens beautiful panoramas of Kaunas.
Klaipėda cherishes marine traditions–: it hosts the Sea Festival on the last weekend of July every year since 1934. This event includes a number of performances of artistic companies and craftsmen’s fairs. The festival attracts many participants and guests not only from Lithuania but also from abroad. The Kopgalis Fort complex, built in the 19th century, houses the Maritime Museum with an attractive exposition of marine nature and the history of navigation.
Probably the Europe’s largest rolling sand dunes, the Baltic Sea roaring on the west, the Curonian Lagoon welcoming the sun every morning, and other natural wonders in the Curonian Spit National Park are all very close to one another, making a remarkable and idyllic landscape amazing everyone who visits them.
The sand stripe of 98 kilometres, washed by the Baltic Sea on the west and the Curonian Lagoon waters from the east, is a wonderful joint working of nature and human efforts. The current landscape of the Curonian Spit was formed by residents struggling with the inexorable wind and attempting to tame the sand carried by it. Because of this unique union of man and nature in shaping the landscape, the Curonian Spit was declared a national park and was included in the UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Hill of Crosses
Nowhere else in the world you will find such a place – where so many crosses are brought by people on the hill, embraced by legends, and fables. The Hill of Crosses is a unique sacral place, amazing and the only one of its size and history in the world. This world well-known shrine is frequented by tourists. People of different nations and religions bring here crosses with their names, intentions, and pleadings for clemency.
Aukstaitija National Park
Aukštaitija National Park is famous for its extremely clean lakes, mounds, ethnographic villages, hilly terrain, abundance of forests and a harmony of nature. Climb the Ladakalnis hill in the park and enjoy the panorama with as many as six lakes and the breathtaking beauty of the surroundings. Once you come to Ladakalnis, you should visit the nearby Ginučiai water mill, with the preserved the authentic equipment: a water wheel, a bag lifting mechanism, a millstone and an edgestone. Also travelling in the Aukštaitija National Park visit the ancient beekeeping museum where you can see with your own eyes what bee hives were used in Lithuania in the sixteenth century, and taste some very fresh honey.
Zemaitija National Park
Zemaitija (Samogitia) National Park is a real discovery for those who are travelling to explore natural surroundings and original traditions of the region. Bicycle travellers, tourists, nature lovers, divers, water sports and tourism, fishing, bird-watching enthusiasts are all welcome.
Plateliai lake, large and dense forests, Žemaičių Kalvarija town architecture, products of skilful wood craftsmen, uproar of the traditional Mardi Gras celebration – these are just a few things that are worth a visit when you are in Samogitia National Park.
Kėdainiai is one of the oldest towns in Lithuania which has an impressive and historically unique place – Old town. The history of the town is counted from 1372, when Kėdainiai were first mentioned in Livonian Chronicle by Hermann Wartberge.
Nemunas is a Lithuanian ornament, the father of all rivers, from ancient times mentioned and described in the artworks of poets and writers, artists, and composers. It is not only because it is the largest river in Lithuania – tourists in particularly love the landscapes of Nemunas delta flocking with birds, and displaying miraculous sunsets.
Text courtesy of Lithuanian State Department of Tourism.