Is Vilnius value visiting? Heck Sure! There are a variety of issues to do in Vilnius for all guests and it’s undoubtedly a spotlight of any journey to the Baltics. The town is probably the most populist is the capital of Lithuania. It’s a quaint city with a small inhabitants of half one million and terribly welcoming. It’s the right place to get misplaced for a couple of days and a well-liked cease on the Baltic tour route.
Streets are cobblestoned and the town middle is the most important preserved instance of baroque structure in Europe. It’s affected by Catholic and Orthodox church buildings and regardless of the place you’re within the metropolis you’ll be able to see the ever-present Gediminas’ Tower.
The most important metropolis in Lithuania and is filled with small cafes, charming outlets, eating places, artwork, and historical past. We had a unbelievable time exploring and may’t wait to return someday. It’s filled with fascinating actions and sights. We advocate you comply with our footsteps and some these nice issues to do in Vilnius.
- 1 Discover the Previous City
- 2 Gate of Daybreak
- 3 Head into Uzupis
- 4 Wander round Bernardine Cemetary
- 5 KGB Museum // Museum of Occupations and Freedom Fights
- 6 Eat at Snekutis
- 7 Hike as much as Gediminas’ Tower
- 8 Three Crosses Hill
- 9 Take a day journey to Trakai Fort
- 10 Catch a Play!
- 11 Sts. Peter and Paul Church
- 12 Church of St Johns
- 13 Church of St Theresa
- 14 Stebuklas, the “Miracle Tile”
- 15 Vilnius Cathedral
- 16 Nationwide Museum of Lithuania
- 17 The Artillery Bastion
- 18 St Casimir’s Church
- 19 Uptown Bazaar
- 20 Benefit from the Road Artwork
- 21 St Anne’s Church
- 22 Christopher Summer time Music Pageant
- 23 Vilnil Museum of Illusions
- 24 Plan Your Journey to Vilnius
- 25 Have you ever been to Lithuania? What issues did you do in Vilnius?
Discover the Previous City
A European metropolis with an previous city is nothing new, however they’re virtually all the time nicely value exploring. In the event you solely have someday in Vilnius I might extremely advocate staying at a lodge within the precise previous city and wander round day and night time from there. Vilnius’s previous city is sort of giant, however straightforward to navigate. The baroque structure is plentiful and there are many cafes to dip into and luxuriate in a espresso earlier than shifting on t.
The streets are bustling in any respect hours, and there’s a cafe each 10 steps. The cobbled streets are extraordinarily clear, and boast numerous touristy websites like St. Anne’s Church and the Presidential Palace. This was ones of our favourite issues to do in Vilnius and any city in Europe for that matter.
Gate of Daybreak
One other great point to do in Vilnius, Lithuania is go to the Gate of Daybreak. Also called the Sharp Gate, the Gate of Daybreak is a staple sight for those who go to the nation’s capital. It’s notably notable as it’s the final remaining gate of 5, from the wall that when surrounded the town limits. Because of the gate’s age (development on the wall started in 1503), in addition to the famed portray of the Blessed Virgin Mary within the close by gate chapel, the location attracts pilgrims and vacationers from everywhere in the world. These days, it’s one thing of a shrine. Because the Virgin Mary is usually related to dawn, the gate turned regionally often known as the Gate of Daybreak.
Head into Uzupis
With out even realizing it, we had crossed the bridge over the Vilnia River and have been within the Republic of Uzupis. A self-governing “free city,” just like that of Freetown Christiania. Uzupis has its personal president, foreign money, and structure and could be very charming to stroll round in. There’s a bohemian and inventive really feel to the small space, and yow will discover your self exploring the artwork installations whereas lazing concerning the Vilnia River.
Wander round Bernardine Cemetary
I’ve by no means been a cemetery expeditionist, however this specific Lithuanian cemetery is a beautiful place to go to in Vilnius. Simply to the east of the Uzupis district, you’ll discover the peaceable graveyard overlooking the town. Enterprise in and pay your respects, you gained’t remorse it. It is likely one of the many free issues to do in Vilnius as properly.
KGB Museum // Museum of Occupations and Freedom Fights
For those who’re up for it, the Museum of Occupations and Freedom Fights (also referred to as the Genocide Museum) is certainly value a go to to pay respects and homage to a darkish interval within the nation’s historical past. The constructing’s historical past is one in every of invasion and bloodshed; it first served because the Gestapo headquarters through the Nazi occupation in 1941. When the Soviets re-took the nation in 1944, the constructing was utilized by the KGB to detain, imprison, torture, and execute all those that resisted Soviet rule.
The constructing is now a museum, the place guests can tour three flooring; the highest two define the daily life within the nation and Lithuanian resistance towards the Soviet Union, whereas the basement homes the jail the place torture and execution would happen. This museum is a chilling reminder of occupation and energy, and the results of preventing again.
Eat at Snekutis
There are three places across the metropolis to attempt low cost native Lithuanian meals. They’ve many draft beer choices starting from €1.30-€three. Come hungry and depart 10 lbs heavier from the hearty meat and potato pancakes. Now can be a great time to stroll round previous city. Keep in mind that it’s widespread to tip 10% on meals payments in lots of elements of Europe, learn extra about tipping in Europe.
Hike as much as Gediminas’ Tower
For one of the best views of all of Vilnius it’s greatest to go as much as Gediminas’ Tower, the remnants of the higher citadel. There’s additionally a museum inside for €2.
Three Crosses Hill
As soon as completed with the tower stroll down and head over to the steps main as much as The Three Crosses. On the prime, you can find superb 360 views of Vilnius. The monument is a dedication to Lithuania’s darkish previous with the Soviet Union. For my part this is among the biggest issues to see in Vilnius.
Take a day journey to Trakai Fort
We advocate Trakai Fort as one of many prime issues to do in Vilnius regardless that it’s not within the metropolis. It makes for an ideal day journey and solely takes a 30-minute bus journey to get to Trakai.
The preferred factor to do in Trakai is go to Trakai Citadel, a 14th-century fort surrounded by Lake Galve. It’s really beautiful to see, and I might extremely advocate paying the €6 to go inside (€three for college kids). A minimum of a half day is really helpful for this present day journey, buses depart frequently and are €1.77 a method.
Catch a Play!
The Lithuanian Opera and Ballet Theatre has quite a few performances each week. Tickets are extremely reasonably priced beginning at simply €three a bit. Catching a present is ideal for couples particularly on the lookout for a romantic night time out in Vilnius.
Sts. Peter and Paul Church
A number of publications have regularly referred to the Church of Sts. Peter and Paul as one of the crucial lovely in Europe, alongside church buildings in cities resembling Venice, Madrid, and Krakow. When you arrive, it’s not arduous to see why. The inside is a vibrant show of baroque structure, and over 2000 stucco figures beautify the within of the church corridor. Although the church was initially a easy picket construction, it was destroyed throughout a time of warfare with Russia. Its reconstruction resulted within the constructing that stands right now, a wealthy and visually astounding tapestry of types.
The within has a major nave, but in addition aspect altars and a number of other chapels. Although its inside is an interesting mix of types and decor, there are not any surviving data to elucidate who might have designed the beautiful interiors.
Church of St Johns
In the event you’re passing via the Previous City of the town, then likelihood is you gained’t be very distant from the Church of St Johns. Annexed as a part of the Vilnius College, the inside of the church is Gothic, per its unique development, whereas its exterior now displays the late Baroque type after it was redesigned. It has all the time been (and continues to be) a website for main group occasions within the metropolis, from protests and performances to royal welcomes.
Should you’re trying to take your go to to the subsequent degree (pardon the pun), then remember to go to the campanile of the church. At solely €2,50, it’s the very best level within the metropolis, which means that the views you’ll get from the highest just about can’t be matched by some other construction on the town.
Church of St Theresa
Constructed by an Italian architect within the Baroque type, it’s no marvel that the Church of St Theresa turned out to be such a visually engaging construction. Its exterior is intricate (principally sandstone and granite), however not notably embellished; the true jaw-dropping magnificence was saved for the inside. Its altar is likely one of the highest and most lovely within the nation. The excessive vaulted ceilings, vibrant frescoes, and extremely detailed carvings and sculptures make the within of the church really a marvel to see.
It’s extraordinarily near the Gates of Daybreak, so bundling the 2 may help you handle your time to benefit from your day.
Stebuklas, the “Miracle Tile”
It’s not fairly a wishing properly, however in accordance with legend, this magical tile tucked away in Cathedral Sq. has the power to grant needs and make your goals come true. Whether or not or not that’s true is up for debate, however the stone has a a lot richer historical past than merely granting needs: it was as soon as a strong show of quiet protest in the course of the dying days of the nation as a republic underneath Soviet Rule.
Round two million individuals banded collectively to make a human chain by holding palms all the best way from Estonia, by way of Latvia, and eventually ending on the tile in Vilnius—a strong assertion towards the rule of the united states and highlighting the power of human spirit and togetherness. It’s supposedly handiest as a fortunate appeal in the event you occur to come across the tile with out looking for it out, however you’ll by no means know till you attempt!
For those who’re in search of an inventory of staple issues to do in Vilnius, you possibly can’t miss the Cathedral and its basilica. Its exterior is austere however inviting – a grandiose show of vibrant white façade and enormous stone pillars. There are a number of statuettes of evangelists and saints adorning the outside, and within the sq. simply outdoors stands the freestanding bell tower, which exhibits the place the river initially flowed via the town.
Whereas the naked and undecorated insides of the cathedral bear witness to the repercussions of Soviet rule, guests can nonetheless recognize the dimensions of the inside corridor and even take a guided journey right down to the cathedral catacombs, the place many dukes and kings are buried.
Nationwide Museum of Lithuania
Nonetheless questioning what to do in Vilnius? Many individuals don’t consider Lithuania as a premier vacation vacation spot, so likelihood is for those who’re right here, you’ve acquired some curiosity in tradition and historical past. If that’s the case, there’s no higher strategy to immerse your self in its wealthy historical past than to go to the Nationwide Museum. The shows showcase the historical past of Lithuania all the best way as much as trendy occasions. There’s a monument close by devoted to the nation’s final king. A funicular close by will take you up Gediminas Hill.
The museum’s reveals are particular and detailed, with shows starting from numismatics (historic cash) to archeology and iconography. It’s closed on public holidays, however at solely three euros, it makes for an amazing, cheap daytime exercise, the place what you’ll see far outweighs the admission charge.
The Artillery Bastion
We’re fairly into previous issues however will give bonus factors if they’re previous partitions. To see historic buildings like this – notably historic defensive buildings – holds a degree of fascination typically not current in your typical church or museum. The Artillery Bastion was first constructed within the 17th century and have become broken throughout wars with Moscow.
As we speak, a lot of the bastion stays; the tower, underground gun ports, and tunneling are nonetheless principally intact. There’s a connecting museum showcasing some extra military-specific historical past of the town because it pertains to the wall. After you’ve taken your fill, step onto the Bastion Terrace for some significantly spectacular views of the town.
St Casimir’s Church
Should you handed a pink-ish church and questioned what it was, it’s St Casimir’s Church. Constructed by Jesuits to honor St Casimir in 1604, the unique construction was burnt down a number of occasions over the course of some many years. Fortunately, it was lastly restored to the façade that stands at the moment—therefore why its decor is a patchwork of Baroque, Renaissance, and Gothic. Its fascinating exterior is only a preview of the element contained inside; wealthy and complex baroque altars adorn the inside corridor.
In the course of the Second World Conflict, the museum was closed, mimicking the destiny of many church buildings within the nation. It turned a museum of atheism till 1988 when it was re-consecrated and reincarnated as a Catholic church as soon as once more.
You possibly can name this a meals courtroom should you actually needed to, however you wouldn’t be doing it justice. The Uptown Bazaar is a vibrant and wealthy mixture of scents and sights, with a near-endless array of eating choices – from worldwide delicacies like ramen, tapas, or Thai, to nationwide dishes and even burger joints and taco stands. Deliver your urge for food; you undoubtedly gained’t depart right here hungry because it’s probably the greatest locations to eat in Vilnius. This spot is for every little thing – from an off-the-cuff brunch or an enormous banquet to laidback drinks at nightfall.
Boasting a complete of 27 eating places and bars, there’s even a recent grocer the place you should purchase produce and different items—simply in case you’re extra of a DIY type of individual.
Benefit from the Road Artwork
Not your typical factor to do in a European metropolis, however a road artwork tour continues to be fairly cool and an exquisite approach to forged new mild on historic environment. Vilnius, like many different cities everywhere in the world, has its justifiable share of road and graffiti artwork. Taking a bit tour of the notable factors round city could be a good way to see the town whereas additionally getting somewhat train and venturing off the crushed vacationer path.
Arguably the best-known piece is the wall that includes Trump and Putin – the latter having cigarette smoke being blown into his mouth (the unique wall featured a passionate kiss, however after some controversy, the mural was adjusted). The wide selection of inventive types, colours, mediums, and mural sizes point out that there’s some critical expertise rampant in Vilnius, so despite the fact that this can be a extra time-consuming outing, it’s completely value it to see the artwork.
St Anne’s Church
This specific church is a bit more ornate than many others within the metropolis. It’s usually seen as a Gothic masterpiece that has retained all of its unique glory and grandeur, having fortuitously come to no hurt or destruction in her 500 years of standing. That stated, its unique construction was a picket church constructed for Anna, the Grand Duchess of Lithuania.
An exquisite bell tower – additionally constructed within the Gothic type – stands close by. Not surprisingly, Napoleon himself fell in love with it—a lot so, in reality, that he needed to take it again to Paris within the palm of his hand. Sadly, this was not potential, so he might have wanted to return again for a go to or two. The church is a simple stroll from the close by cathedral, so this may be tacked on to your cathedral go to.
Christopher Summer time Music Pageant
That is restricted to these touring to Vilnius in the summertime months, however its standing as a cultural metropolis icon earns it a point out on this record. One of many nation’s longest operating music festivals, it takes place over a interval of two months, with numerous musical acts throughout dozens of venues all through the town. The overall theme behind the pageant is variety; this comes throughout within the musical acts, the artists of which journey from everywhere in the world to carry out.
Every little thing from sacred choir music and clean jazz to a gaggle recognized solely because the Loopy Saxophones play for this pageant. It’s somewhat quirky and undoubtedly on the experimental aspect of artistic, however properly value taking in a present or two in case you’re in Vilnius over the summer time!
Vilnil Museum of Illusions
Most museums are typically historic, and whereas Vilnius does have its justifiable share of museums depicting the town and nation’s wealthy historical past, this specific museum is a bit more on the enjoyable aspect of issues. It’s pretty new—solely open since 2016—and options over 70 reveals that includes mind-bending optical illusions, digital actuality, and installations designed to have you ever questioning your eyes!
There are additionally dance performances, most of that are mixed with an LED mild present for one thing really visually spectacular. Whereas this isn’t going to complement your view of Lithuania or enable you to perceive its historical past, it’s a great way to unwind after a day of exploring church buildings and human historical past museums.
Plan Your Journey to Vilnius
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Have you ever been to Lithuania? What issues did you do in Vilnius?