Vilnius, Lithuania

★★★★★

Visited: Summer 2017

Recommended Stay: 2-3 days

Trip Tips: Avoid Mondays as almost all museums are closed. The heart-wrenching Museum of Genocide is closed on Mondays and Tuesdays.

Though Tallin (Estonia) has consistently been lauded as the most gorgeous city in the Baltic States, I think Vilnius is either a close second or should share that same prestige in a two-way tie.  Since Vilnius does not nearly receive the identical amount of accolades from tourists as Tallinn, it sadly does not get the level of attention from other travelers it deserves, or worse, it can be bypassed altogether as it is the southernmost located capital in the Baltics. It also does not help that it is situated farther inland unjustly preventing it from being one of the required stops on the cruise ships plying the Baltic Sea.  However, those who persevere and put forth that extra effort to make a trip to Vilnius will rarely get disappointed.

Day 1

Morning – A free walking tour of the Ancient Old Town.

The free tours typically include a pit stop in the artist enclave of Uzupio.

Afternoon – A visit to Cathedral Square and a hike up to the top of the Gediminas Hill to visit the Fortress and Three Crosses and then going down the trail by the river.

Cathedral Square
Gediminas Hill and Fortress
Three Crosses

Day 2

Morning – A tour of the astonishing Vilnius University, the oldest university in the Baltic States, and its famed library.  You can also climb up St. John’s bell tower for expansive views of Vilnius.

After marveling at the sumptuous architecture of the Vilnius University, cross over to Literatu Street for a one of a kind take on street art. Works from various artists are mounted on the walls lining up this diminutive but atmospheric street.

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Art Work at Literatu Street

Afternoon – A visit to several churches in the Old Town and ending at the Museum of Genocide.

Day 3

A Day Trip to Trakai, an ancient Lithuanian town, which boasts a tranquil island setting surrounded by pristine lakes and a castle from the 15th century (mostly restored).

Accommodations:

POGO Hostel, Vilnius: a centrally located economical hostel smacked a few feet away from Cathedral Square.

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Have you been to Vilnius?


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