10 reasons to visit Vilnius

Katedra, Gedimino prospektasVilnius is the capital city of Lithuania. The city is known as the culture capital of Europe in 2009. It is surely one of the most visited city in Lithuania and every year tourists from every nook and corner of the world travels in Vilnius for a memorable holiday.

So, there are tousands reasons to visit Vilnius and here are 10 of them:

1. Old Town – It is a city area which began to develop extensively since the Middle Ages and eventually has been surrounded by a defensive wall. The wall determined a firm area and its shape for a long period of time, this area now is called Old Town and has a separate status in Vilnius administrative division. While the urban structure, with thegedimino pilis2 exception of several areas significantly damaged during the WWII, reflects the earliest development from c. 14 century, the architecture of the buildings is mostly from Baroque and Classicism periods with some examples of Renaissance and Gothic, to a lesser extent. In 1994, the Old Town was added to the UNESCO World Heritage List.

2. Gediminas Castle – The red-brick tower is restored from the Higher Castle erected in the 13th–14th centuries by Dukes of Lithuania. The top of the towers offer the best view of Vilnius. Gediminas’ Tower is an important state and historic symbol of the city of Vilnius and of Lithuania itself. It is depicted on the national currency, the litas, and is mentioned in numerous Lithuanian patriotic poems and folk songs.

0a4d638674ba0a2ca67e7fbdb0e67cff3. Vilnius Cathedral, Cathedral Square – Vilnius Cathedral building is an oblong rectangular, symmetrical compositions of Gothic, Baroque style features. You can also take a tour through the catacombs under the cathedral. 57 m high belfry. Outside the Cathedral, in the square, look for a particular tile on which there is written a word “Stebuklas” (means “miracle” in Lithuanian). Stand on it, make a wish and turn around three times. Your wish should come true :) This tile also marks the end of the Vilnius-Tallinn human chain in the 1989 protest of the Soviet Union.

4. Uzupis District – A part of Old Town. A largely unrestored area primarily occupied by artists, dreamers, squatters, and drunks. In 1998, the residents unofficially declared the area to be an independent republic, with its own president, anthem, flag, and constitution. Great to visit on April Fools day, when mock border guards stamp passports and the entire area erupts into a party.

europos parkas25. European Park – The park exhibiting over 100 sculptures, which the authors – artists from 32 countries (not just Europe). Among them – leading contemporary artists Magdalena Abakanowicz, Sol LeWitt, Dennis Oppenheim. Europe park is near Vilnius in Joneikiškes village.

6. St. Ann’s Church – (Old Town near Užupis). One of the most beautiful churches in Vilnius and in Lithuania. Very small in size, but a very beautiful example of gothic architecture. There is a legend that when during his conquests Napoleon came to Vilnius and saw this church he said he would like to take it on his palm and bring to France.

orobalionai37. Hot air balloon flights – Hot air balloon flights normally take place early in the morning (1-2 hours after the sunrise), and in the evening, 1-2 hours prior to the sunset. Any large enough and protected from the wind area can serve as a launch field for a hot air balloon flight. A flight will cost 87-145 eur. Flight moment will experience an unforgettable impressions.

8. Beer – The most popular local beer is Švyturys, meaning lighthouse. Available in lots of different styles but “Ekstra” is probably the best. The other brands of beer include Kalnapilis, Tauras, and Utenos. All of them are variations on the theme of bog-standard euro-lager. If you’re a beer enthusiast forget Svyturys and other big brands – try Alaus namai (The House of Beer) and Bambalynė (see section Bars). There you will find many beer varieties.

9. Night clubs – At night clubs in Vilnius ladies get all wet and lathery, cheap offers on cocktails, deckchairs, large television screens and a predominantly young crowd are the things to expect inside this heaving Old Town favourite. Each night in Vilnius clubs promises a different theme, with music focusing on pop and old favourites.

10. Girls – Lithuanian girls are the most beautiful reasons to come to Vilnius, Lithuania. Night life people are very relaxed, always smiling, joking, are friendly and helpful.