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Alizava Vilnius Europe: A Travel Guide to the Heart of Lithuania Exploring Vilnius: The Historic Capital of Lithuania So you've decided to visit the historic capital of Lithuania.
Excellent choice.
Vilnius is a gem waiting to be discovered, filled with stunning Baroque architecture, a vibrant cafe culture, and a long, complex history.
As you wander the cobblestone streets of the charming Old Town, you'll feel like you've stepped back in time.
But don't be fooled, this is also a modern city with a buzzing nightlife, food scene, and art community.
Over the next few days, you'll uncover Vilnius's many layers.
From the medieval castles perched on the banks of the Neris River, to the bohemian Užupis district, to a poignant glimpse into the city's Jewish past, there's no shortage of fascinating sights.
And when you need a break, cozy up in one of the homey cafes or restaurants and sample classic Lithuanian fare like cepelinai dumplings or šaltibarščiai cold beetroot soup.
By the end of your trip, you'll understand why Vilnius deserves a spot on your must-visit list.
This beguiling place will capture your imagination and your heart.
Journey to the center of the Baltics and experience the soul of Lithuania in its magical capital.
The adventures await! Top Attractions and Things to Do in Vilnius Exploring Vilnius: The Historic Capital of Lithuania Old Town The historic heart of Vilnius, a UNESCO World Heritage site, is a labyrinth of cobblestone streets, charming cafés, and architectural eye candy.
Over 70% of the buildings here date back centuries, so you'll feel transported in time as you wander past Gothic, Renaissance, Baroque and Neoclassical landmarks like Vilnius Cathedral and Gediminas Tower.
For panoramic views of red-roofed Old Town, head to the top of Gediminas Castle.
The remains of this 14th-century fortress sit on a hill overlooking the Neris River.
While there, check out the Upper Castle with exhibits on the history of Vilnius.
Museums and Galleries Vilnius has a thriving arts and cultural scene.
The National Museum showcases art, history, and natural history exhibits in a grand Neoclassical building.
The Vilnius Picture Gallery houses European paintings from the 16th to 19th centuries, including works by Rubens, Goya and Monet.
Contemporary art spaces include the Contemporary Art Centre and the Jonas Mekas Visual Arts Center, dedicated to experimental film.
For a dose of Soviet-era history, visit the Museum of Occupations and Freedom Fights or the KGB Museum.
Parks and Churches When you need a break from the cobblestones, Vilnius' parks offer leafy respite.
Bernardinai Garden, once part of a Bernardine monastery, is a popular spot for picnics and sunbathing.
Three Crosses, a striking concrete art installation, crowns Kalnai Park.
With over 40 churches, Vilnius has been called the "City of Churches".
St.
Anne's Church, with its Gothic facade, and the Baroque St.
Peter and St.
Paul's Church are two of the most striking.
Vilnius Cathedral, a national historic landmark, houses the remains of St.
Casimir.
Experiencing the Vibrant Arts and Culture Scene Vilnius has no shortage of attractions to keep you exploring for days.
Here are some of the highlights you won't want to miss: Gediminas Castle Tower Climb the tower of Vilnius’ iconic Gediminas Castle, which dates back to the 13th century.
At the top, you’ll be rewarded with panoramic views of the city.
The castle grounds also host outdoor concerts, festivals and events, especially in the summer.
Cathedral Square This historic square in the heart of the Old Town is surrounded by architectural marvels like the Vilnius Cathedral, Gediminas Tower and the Royal Palace of Lithuania.
Grab a coffee or beer at one of the many cafes lining the square, pull up a bench and soak in the atmosphere.
Užupis District This quirky neighborhood, once a separate town, declared itself an independent republic in 1997.
Explore the cobblestone streets, lined with art galleries, studios, and cafes.
Don’t miss the Užupis Angel, a statue that symbolizes the free spirit of the district.
St.
Anne's Church One of the finest examples of Gothic architecture in the Baltics.
The all-brick church was built in the early 16th century, and is especially stunning when lit up at night.
Museum of Illusions If you’re traveling with kids, they’ll love this museum full of optical illusions, holograms and mind-bending exhibits.
It’s a fun, interactive experience for both children and adults.
Vilnius has charm, culture, history and natural beauty in spades.
No matter your interests, you’ll find plenty to spark your curiosity in Lithuania’s capital city.
Where to Stay: Best Hotels and Accommodations in Vilnius Experiencing the Vibrant Arts and Culture Scene Vilnius is a hub of arts and culture, with a scene as eclectic and vibrant as the city itself.
You’ll find world-class museums, historic churches, independent art galleries, ballet and opera houses, as well as underground clubs featuring electronic music.
There’s something for culture vultures of all kinds in Lithuania’s capital.
Museums Some of the top museums in Vilnius include the National Museum of Lithuania, showcasing the history, culture and art of Lithuania.
The Vilnius Cathedral Museum holds many priceless religious artifacts within the Vilnius Cathedral.
The Palace of the Grand Dukes of Lithuania is a must-see, housing art, artifacts and history of the Grand Duchy era.
For contemporary art, head to the Contemporary Art Centre and the National Gallery of Art.
Performing Arts Catch a show at the Lithuanian National Opera and Ballet Theatre, located in a historic building in the Old Town.
They feature classic operas, ballets and concerts.
The Lithuanian National Drama Theatre and Keistuolių Teatras (Theatre of Fools) offer dramatic performances, with some shows available in English.
For live music, check out clubs like Opium Club, for electronic dance music, or Tamsta which features local indie rock bands.
Churches Vilnius is known for its many architecturally stunning churches.
Some of the most impressive are Vilnius Cathedral, St.
Anne's Church, and the Church of St.
Peter and St.
Paul.
They showcase a mix of architectural styles from Gothic to Baroque.
These historic churches hold regular services but are also open to visitors outside of service times.
Independent Galleries Explore the city’s independent art scene at contemporary galleries like Akademija, The Rooster Gallery, and Gallery AV17.
They feature experimental works by up and coming Lithuanian artists in photography, sculpture, video, street art and more.
Most galleries are open daily and admission is free.
Check their websites or social media for current exhibition details.
You could spend weeks immersed in Vilnius’ creative culture and still only scratch the surface.
From world-class institutions to underground clubs, a vibrant arts scene beats at the heart of this city.
Day Trips and Excursions From Vilnius Vilnius, the capital of Lithuania, is a charming city with a variety of accommodation options to suit any budget.
Here are some of the best places to stay during your visit to Vilnius.
Radisson Blu Royal Astorija Hotel This luxurious 5-star hotel is set within an elegant 19th-century building in the heart of Vilnius’ Old Town.
It offers spacious, air-conditioned rooms with marble bathrooms, and an indoor pool and spa.
The on-site Astorija Restaurant serves Lithuanian and international cuisine in an upscale setting.
While pricey, the unbeatable location and amenities make it worth the splurge.
Stikliai Hotel This 4-star boutique hotel is also located in a historic building in Old Town, within walking distance of major attractions.
Rooms feature stylish décor with modern amenities like rainfall showers, espresso machines and free Wi-Fi.
There is a chic on-site restaurant and bar, as well as a fitness center and sauna.
It’s an excellent mid-range option with a central spot.
Grata Hotel For budget travelers, the 3-star Grata Hotel is a solid choice.
It’s situated about a 15 minute walk from Old Town in the Žirmūnai district.
Rooms are simple but comfortable, with flat-screen TVs, air conditioning and private bathrooms.
There is free Wi-Fi throughout the hotel, and free parking is available.
While not in the city center, the Grata is very affordable, with rates often under $50 USD per night.
Vilnius has accommodation to match any style and budget.
From luxurious 5-star hotels set in historic buildings to affordable 3-star properties a bit further out, you'll find the perfect place to call home during your Lithuanian getaway.

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