Vilnius Journals

Vilnius' Turbulent Past and Bright Future

Best of IgoUgo

A June 2007 trip to Vilnius by Koentje3000

Vilnius panorama Photo, Vilnius, Lithuania More Photos
Quote: Not yet spoilt by mass tourism, Vilnius' small but beautiful old town was shaped by several passers-by, who all left their landmarks in the city.

Vilnius' Turbulent Past and Bright Future

Best Of IgoUgo

Overview

Vilnius panorama Photo, Vilnius, Lithuania
Quote:
Vilnius is the capital of Lithuania and the country's largest with around half a million inhabitants. It is located on the Neris river, in the far east of the country only 60km from the Belarusian border. Due to this rather remote location the town has up till now been largely overlooked by the party-going European crowd in their quest for cheap alcohol or loose morals, a thing that's plaguing these two other Baltic capitals of Riga and Tallinn. People who do visit the town will be amazed by its beautiful UNESCO-listed old town, its fri...Read More

Vilnius Cathedral

Best Of IgoUgo

Attraction

Vilnius Cathedral Photo, Vilnius, Lithuania
Quote:
The Roman Catholic Cathedral of Vilnius is a landmark of the city and definitely one of its greatest sights. It is located in possibly the oldest parts of town, namely within the limits of the Vilnius Castle complex, right on the pedestrian Cathedral Square. The first church on this location was probably built around 1250AD on the remains of a pagan temple by Mindaugas, the first Grand Duke of Lithuania, after his conversion to Christianity. However, after his death the succeeding dukes were not really interested in the new faith and the church was left to pagan believers again. In the neighbouring areas German and Russian crusaders did...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on February 11, 2008

Vilnius Cathedral
Katedros 1
Vilnius, Lithuania

Gate of Dawn

Best Of IgoUgo

Attraction

Gate of Dawn Photo, Vilnius, Lithuania
Quote:
The Gate of Dawn (Ausros Vartai) in Lithuanian is an important place of pilgrimage for both Catholic and Orthodox people of Lithuania, Poland and Belarus. During the construction of the gate in the beginning of the 16th century these 3 countries after all belonged to one superpower state, namely the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, a dominating force in Eastern Europe until the 18th century rise of Austria and Prussia. The gate was originally part of a defence wall encircling the entire old town of Vilnius, of which little remains. Originally the gate was known as "Sharp Gate" (Ostra Brama in Polish), possibly named after the old Vilnius quarter Ostry Koniec (Sharp End). The Polish...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on February 14, 2008

Gate of Dawn
Vilnius
Vilnius

Church of the Holy Spirit

Best Of IgoUgo

Attraction

Church dome Photo, Vilnius, Lithuania
Quote:
One of the most remarkable churches in Vilnius is the Orthodox Church of the Holy Spirit (Lithuanian: Sventosios Dvasios Baznycia, Russian: Cerkov Svjatogo Duxa), located in Ausros Vartu Street near the Gate of Dawn. It should not be confused with the Catholic Church of the Holy Spirit, located in Dominikonu Street near Vilnius University and catering to the Catholic Polish community of Vilnius. The first church on this location, at the edge of the Old Town, was a Gothic construction built by the Orthodox Brotherhood of the Holy Trinity during the 16th century. Although the majority of V...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on February 20, 2008

Trakai

Best Of IgoUgo

Attraction

Trakai Island Castle Photo, Vilnius, Lithuania
Quote:
The small town of Trakai, about 30km west of the Lithuanian capital Vilnius, is the capital of Trakai district, but with its 6000 inhabitants only the second city in the district after Lentvaris, a moderately interesting transportation hub on the road to Vilnius. Trakai's location alone, on a peninsula jutting into lake Galve and in the neighbourhood of several other lakes of the Trakai National Park, would justify the steady stream of tourists coming to the town, but additionally the town contains a few great buildings as a testimony of its long history.Little is known about the prehistory of the area, but it is certain that around 500AD the area was ...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on February 29, 2008