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Maps Events Restaurants Cafés Nightlife Sightseeing Shopping Hotels

Vilnius
Summer 2018

What to Eat
Reviews, from big
burgers to fine dining
Where to Drink
Fun-loving nightlife,
from bars to hookahs

inyourpocket.com
N°125 - €4.99
Contents
Jewish Vilnius 66

Trakai 69
Lithuania’s former capital uncovered

Shopping 72
Foreword 4
Leisure 80
Vilnius in 48 Hours 5
Health & Useful Addresses 84
Arriving & Getting Around 6 From doctors and dentists to foreign embassies
Vilnius Basics 11 Hotels 88
History 14 List of small features
What’s On 16 Parking in Vilnius 9
Art, events and the rest Learn Lithuanian! 13
Tips for tipping 38
Liepāja, Latvia 24 Lithuania’s coffee revolution 43
The name game 52
Restaurants 26
Statues that speak 62
The capital’s kitchens in all their glory
What to buy in Vilnius 76
Cafés 40 Explore Lithuania 81

Nightlife 44 Maps & Index


Where to party in Vilnius City centre map 92 - 93
City map 94 - 95
Sightseeing 54 Street register / Index of venues 96 - 97
A comprehensive guide Lithuania map 98

View from inside the Presidential Palace garden

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Foreword
Every summer, Vilnius surges back to life after the long Baltic
winter. The climate can almost reach Mediterranean heights,
which perfectly suits the Old Town’s stunning Baroque and
Renaissance style buildings. Sitting at one of the countless ta-
bles outside a restaurant, bar or café with a view of an evoca- Publisher
tive lane or courtyard is one of the city’s great pleasures, feel- Vilnius In Your Pocket
ing the infectious atmosphere of being part of a small crowd Bernardinų 9 - 4, Vilnius, Lithuania
tel. (+370) 52 12 29 76
of friendly locals and visitors eating and drinking outside, voic- vilnius@inyourpocket.com, www.inyourpocket.com
es echoing and glasses clinking among the romantically illu- ISSN 1392-0057
minated buildings. It can feel like the best place in the world. ©UAB “VIYP”
If you’re on your own, take this city guide with you for Printed by UAB “Lietuvos ryto” spaustuvė three times per year
company. We’ll tell you a bit about where to go and Editorial
Editor Howard Jarvis
what to see, eat and experience during your time in the Researcher Donatas Tumanas
Lithuanian capital. We also have a list of what’s on. If Layout Mārtiņš Zaprauskis
you’re here for a few days, consider a trip to Trakai  with Cover photo © Domantas Kancleris
its fairytale Island Castle surrounded on all sides by pic- Sales & Circulation
turesque lakes. There’s a short overview in this guide. General Manager Milda Povilaitienė
Online we have infinitely more content, with feature articles Sales Manager Inga Balčiūnaitė
on culture, customs, history, sports, where to travel to in Accounting VšĮ “ACORDO”
Lithuania, plus some pointers on local food. The print guide Sales information tel. (+370) 61 04 68 64
Distribution tel. (+370) 61 85 56 00
is published four times a year, available at selected hotels,
bookshops and kiosks. Don’t forget to download our free In This guidebook and all of our other Lithuanian guides are available
Your Pocket travel app for IOS and Android. for sale from kiosks, tourist information centres, the Vilnius In Your
Pocket office and other outlets throughout Vilnius and Lithuania as
well as online at www.inyourpocket.com. Complimentary copies of
Vilnius In Your Pocket are also available in many hotels.
COVER STORY Copyright notice
Maps are the property of UAB IYP. Text and photos copyright UAB
Vilnius’ verdant riverside VIYP 1992-2017; some photos, LATGA-A; maps, cartographer. All
alongside Upės Street is an rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced in
increasingly popular hangout any form, except brief extracts for the purpose of review, without
written permission from the publisher and copyright owner. The
during the summer months for brand name In Your Pocket is used under license from UAB In Your
picnics with families and friends, Pocket (Bernardinų 9-4, Vilnius, Lithuania tel. (+370) 52 12 29 76).
sports, festivals, concerts and
Social Media
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In Your Pocket guide to Vilnius in Lithuania. ONLINE
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4 Vilnius In Your Pocket vilnius.inyourpocket.com


Vilnius in 48 Hours
With so much to see and do, there’s no reason to squeeze a entrances (Universiteto or Šv Jono streets; it’s closed on
stay in the Lithuanian capital to just two days. But if you’re Sundays). This grand old dame is almost 440 years old
time-challenged, here’s how to get the most out of it. and despite periods of closure and repression it’s pro-
fessors and students have persisted with their studies
DAY 1 - OLD TOWN for centuries. In the upper courtyard, take a snap of the
With our Vilnius Centre map as a guide, start your stroll in gorgeous façade of the Church of Sts John and take a
front of the gleaming façade of the Cathedral, with a peek look inside, before whizzing up the separate Belltower
inside at the Baroque St Casimir’s Chapel on the right at in the lift for marvellous Old Town views. In the lower
the back. Walk across the square to meet Grand Duke Ge- courtyard, buy a tome in the beautifully adorned Lit-
diminas searching for his horse, then into the park to find tera bookshop and, nearby, take pictures of the amaz-
the path that winds around Gediminas Hill (if it’s open; due ing murals found in an entrance to the left of the shop.
to subsidence the hill may be closed). Snap a few photos on
the viewing platform at the top of the castle before retrac- Next wander lanes like Gaono, Žydų and Stiklių
ing your steps down to the park. Feeling active enough to with their tiny shops and cafés for a sense of the once
climb to another viewpoint? Find the footbridge over the huge Jewish community tragically annihilated dur-
Vilnia and climb the sandy steps to the Three Crosses. Ei- ing the war. There used to be so many prayer houses,
ther way, green and serene Bernadine Park leads around synagogues and workshops where trades like glass-
the back of picture-perfect Gothic red-brick St Anne’s and blowing were practiced. Nearby, Vokiečių Street is
Bernadine churches. Over the road, the Amber Museum loaded with cafés and restaurants for every budget.
is a brilliant introduction to the mysterious ancient sap.
After you’ve eaten, pass Baroque St Catherine’s to find two
Pilies Street is great for shopping, or for lunch or a snack museums presenting grim but essential insights into Lithu-
if you’re feeling peckish. Etno Dvaras makes an entertain- ania’s recent past. The Holocaust Museum, set inside a
ing stop for local cuisine. In a courtyard further up the hill green wooden house up a tiny lane from Pamėnkalnio, is as
is Balta Balta, selling handcrafted products by local art- much about the once thriving Jewish communities as the
ists with ecological materials and natural dyes. Latako calamitous way they were lost. A little further on, the Gen-
will then take you down to the self-proclaimed artists’ ocide Museum, set within the former cells of the much-
republic of Užupis, its angel statue, witty nailed-to-the- feared KGB building, reveals in chilling detail the brutal way
wall constitution and countless galleries, cafés and quirky the Soviets treated political prisoners until well into the late
details. Don’t be afraid to peer into people’s courtyards. 1980s. In the square opposite stood a gigantic Lenin until it
Back on Didžioji Street, either via steps from the occa- was removed by crane to cheering crowds in 1991. But now
sionally busy Tymo Market to the Bastion or crossing you’re free – to wander up and down central Gedimino
Bokšto, head south to go Baroque hopping between Prospect at will. Westwards will take you past restaurants
churches while getting diverted to shops selling linen, and upmarket clothes stores to the angular Parliament
amber, glass, clay and other souvenirs. See the Basi- building and over the River Neris to Žvėrynas, whose
lian Gate with its all-seeing eye, the three mummified grid of leafy streets and occasional tumbledown wooden
saints inside the Orthodox Church of the Holy Spirit, houses are fun to explore. To eat here, try Panama, or walk
St Theresa’s glorious interior if it’s open, and then rever- back down Gedimino for tasty grub at Zoe’s or big burgers
ently climb steps through a streetside door, on the left at Boom Burgers, then beers at Alaus Biblioteka (Beer
towards the top of Aušros Vartų Street, to come face- Library) and cocktails in Paparazzi.
to-face with the miraculous image of the Virgin Mary
and her many silver hearts inside the Gates of Dawn.

After all this sightseeing it’s time for dinner, wine and lo-
cal beer. The Old Town has dozens of stylish upmarket
restaurants in the vicinity like the fish-centric Žuvinė
at the back of the Town Hall, but if you’re looking for
something more affordable try the German food and
drink at Bunte Gans on Aušros Vartų Street. Cosy bars
line the way too, like Dirty Duck, or the wine bar No-
tre Vie. Hipstery alternative bars lie close to the Gates
of Dawn too, like Bukowski, Kablys and Peronas.

DAY 2 - OLD TOWN AND BEYOND


Now it’s time to look at Vilnius in a bit more depth, with
glances at its enlightened past and also at more troubled
times. Vilnius University is fascinating with its maze of
courtyards and corridors, which you’re free to explore
though you may be charged a small fee at either of its Vilnius at sunset

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Arriving & Getting Around

The top of the Baroque spire of the Church of Sts. John

VILNIUS AIRPORT ARRIVING IN VILNIUS


The three main points of arrival in Vilnius offer very different
VILNIUS INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT experiences indeed, making your first few minutes in the
(TARPTAUTINIS VILNIAUS ORO UOSTAS) city anything from a pleasure to a pain. Improvements are
Vilnius International Airport, situated approximately taking place all the time. Print copies of Vilnius In Your
5km south of the city centre, is small and relatively Pocket can be bought from kiosks inside the airport, bus
easy to use. A restaurant and bar can be found above and train stations for just €1.
the main entrance for fond farewells and devilishly
expensive cognac. A limited hotchpotch of Duty BY BUS
Free shops and cafés are located the other side of Vilnius’ bus station (autobusų stotis) is located less than
customs control. Free wireless internet is available 1km south of Old Town in a less than salubrious, albeit
throughout the airport. To get there by bus (see Public perfectly safe area. Most facilities are located inside one
transport for information on tickets), take Nº3G from large grey building and include kiosks and shops for
Lukiškių Aikštė (Juozo Tumo-Vaižganto stop), Nº88 or snacks, maps, cigarettes and prepaid mobile phone cards,
nightbus Nº88N (Arkikatedra stop), or Nº1 from the downstairs toilets (€0.40) and ATMs. For 24-hour currency
train station. You can also use the shuttle train service exchange, use the Medicinos bank across the street and
that departs from the train station every 30 minutes just to the right of the train station. A bagažinė for left
between around 06:00 and 21:30. Buy a ticket on luggage is located outside at the far end of the platforms.
board the train for just €0.72. A taxi from Old Town Getting to town Get to Old Town in a few minutes by
currently costs around €15, but by calling the right turning left on exiting the station and walking down the hill
company in advance (try tel. (+370) 52 66 66 66) a (Sodų). Countless buses, minibuses and trolleybuses can
recent visitor to the city managed to make the trip for be found in the immediate area, all going off in different
just €5. QRodūnios Kelias 2, tel. (+370) 61 24 44 42, directions around the city and none of them offering a lot
www.vno.lt. Open 24hrs. of help for people who don’t speak Lithuanian. Among the
useful services going through the city centre are trolleybus
Nº2 and bus Nº1G. Buy a ticket from the driver for €1, punch
Get the In Your Pocket it in the ticket puncher, and off you go. Taxis are parked
here and there. Be sure to negotiate a fare before you leave.
City Essentials App Expect to pay €6 or even more for a short trip to Old Town.
Calling one in advance is the best option.
6 Vilnius In Your Pocket vilnius.inyourpocket.com
Arriving & Getting Around
BY PLANE
Vilnius International Airport (Tarptautinis Vilniaus Oro
Uostas) is just 5km south of the city centre. Even if you’re
landing from a non-Schengen country, arrival formalities
are quick and relatively straightforward. After collecting
your luggage enter through the electric sliding doors into
the Arrivals Hall, an experience which is not unlike stepping
into the ticket hall of 19th-century provincial train station.
There you’ll find a kiosk for snacks, maps, cigarettes and
prepaid mobile phone cards, ATMs, currency exchange
offices and a small tourist information kiosk. Toilets are to
the left, and car rental companies to the right. Getting to
town A taxi to Old Town using one of the vehicles parked
outside the arrivals terminal will cost about €15 or possibly
considerably more depending on the cheek of the driver.
Calling one in advance will cost a lot less. If you don’t
know how to do it yourself ask the people in the tourist For business
or leisure,
information kiosk to order one for you. Bus Nº88 goes to the
Old Town (also at nights), Nº1 goes to the train station and

rent your car


rapid bus Nº3G to Lukiškių Aikštė (Juozo Tumo-Vaižganto
stop) and north over the river past the Radisson Blu Hotel
Lietuva. The bus stop is to the left of the taxi stand, and
timetables are posted at the stop. Buy a ticket from the
driver for €1, punch it in the ticket puncher, and off you go.
with Sixt.
Alternatively, hop on a train and in less than 10 minutes be (Sixt has it all.
at the train station in the centre of the city. Buy a ticket on Check sixt.lt for your best deal)
board for just €0.72. The airport train station can be found
along the road outside the main exit and on the left. Trains For reservations: www.sixt.lt or call +37 05239 5636
leave every hour or so from around 06:00 until 21:30, with a
journey time of just seven minutes.
BY TRAIN
The train station (geležinkelio stotis) is fairly large by
AIRPORT TRAIN SCHEDULE local standards. Find kiosks and shops for snacks, maps,
cigarettes and prepaid mobile phone cards scattered in and
From Vilnius To Vilnius
around the building, toilets, ATMs and a 24-hour Medicinos
Dep. Arr. Destination Dep. Arr. bank outside to the left for changing money. Getting to
05:45 05:52 AIRPORT 05:57 06:05 town Get to Old Town in a few minutes by going straight
08:00 08:07 AIRPORT 08:12 08:20 ahead on exiting the station and walking down the hill
08:45 08:52 AIRPORT 08:57 09:05 (Sodų). The train station is just across the street from the
09:35 09:42 AIRPORT 09:47 09:55 bus station. See By bus for more information.
11:00 11:07 AIRPORT 11:12 11:20
AIRPORT
11:45 11:52
12:48 12:55 AIRPORT
11:57 12:05
13:00 13:08
CAR RENTAL
13:30 13:37 AIRPORT 13:42 13:50 Offices representing all of the major international car
rental companies can be found in Vilnius alongside a few
14:06 14:13 AIRPORT 14:18 14:26
local businesses of varying standards. Most major driving
14:50 14:57 AIRPORT 15:05 15:13 international licences are accepted.
16:05 16:12 AIRPORT 16:17 16:25
16:57 17:04 AIRPORT 17:12 17:20 SIXT RENT A CAR (AIRPORT)
17:45 17:52 AIRPORT 17:57 18:05 Rent a Sixt car at Vilnius airport or city office (next to bus
19:20 19:27 AIRPORT 19:32 19:40 station) and you’ll have the freedom to travel to the city and
20:25 20:32 AIRPORT 20:37 20:45 enjoy touring the surrounding area too. Sixt has a wide choice
22:00 22:07 AIRPORT 22:16 22:24 of vehicles, from cheaper options to luxury ranges, all of which
are reliable with great service.QRodūnios Kelias 2 (Airport),
Correct at the time of going to press and subject tel. (+370) 52 39 56 36, www.sixt.lt. Open 24hrs. A
to change during the lifetime of this guide. More
information at www.litrail.lt SIXT RENT A CAR (DOWNTOWN)
Valid until September 8, 2018. QSodų 14, tel. (+370) 52 46 13 84, www.sixt.lt. Open
08:00 - 17:00. Closed Sat, Sun.
facebook.com/VilniusInYourPocket Summer 2018 7
Arriving & Getting Around
ECOLINES
LOCAL BUS SCHEDULE The Lithuanian outfit of the large European network
provides all the usual transport services including cheap
ANYKŠČIAI bus journeys in the region and further afield. Other things
08:05, 09:35, 14:00, 15:30, 16:50, 18:40 include insurance, visas, tourism services and bus rental.
QI‑12, Geležinkelio 15, tel. (+370) 52 13 33 00, www.
BIRŠTONAS ecolines.net. Open 08:30 - 21:00, Also at Vytauto 27,
05:55, 07:25, 08:20, 09:30, 10:40, 12:35, 13:25, 14:40, Kaunas, tel. (+370) 37 20 20 22. A
16:10, 18:10
LUX EXPRESS
DRUSKININKAI QI‑12, Sodų 22, tel. (+370) 52 33 66 66, www.
07:20, 08:40 , 09:35, 10:00, 12:10, 13:05, 14:20, 15:40, luxexpress.eu/en. Open 06:30 - 21:30, Also at Saltoniškių
16:15, 17:10, 18:20, 18:40, 20:30 9 (Panorama). J­A
KAUNAS
05:45, 06:20, 06:40, 07:00, 07:45, 07:55, 08:10, 08:30,
08:45, 09:00, 09:30, 09:45, 10:15, 10:30, 10:40, 10:45, PUBLIC TRANSPORT
11:30, 12:00, 12:20, 12:35, 13:05, 13:20, 13:45, 14:00, Served by a chugging and buzzing network of hard-
14:45, 15:10, 15:25, 15:50, 16:05, 16:25, 16:35, 17:00, working buses and trolleybuses, the capital’s public
17:15, 17:25, 17:30, 17:45, 18:20, 18:40, 19:20, 19:45, transport services wake up at around 5am and continue
20:15, 21:10, 23:00 through the day before stopping not much later than
KLAIPĖDA 11pm. A nightbus service now operates on Friday and
06:00, 06:40, 07:00, 07:50, 08:50, 10:35, 11:00, 11:35, Saturday nights up until around 3am, as well as on New
12:00, 12:40, 13:20, 14:50, 16:00, 16:45, 17:30, 18:30, Year’s Eve and one or two other special occasions. Getting
23:00 about is cheap, and relatively easy once you get the hang of
the basics. If you haven’t bought a ticket from a kiosk, buy
PALANGA one directly from the driver, then validate it by punching
06:00, 07:50, 08:50, 10:35, 11:00, 12:40, 13:20, 14:50, it in the punching machine. Public transport can be very
16:45, 18:30, 23:00 crowded during peak hours, allowing you to rub up close
TRAKAI against the locals. Watch your pockets.
05:55, 06:25, 06:40, 07:10, 07:25, 07:50, 08:20, 08:30,
08:55, 09:00, 09:15, 09:30, 09:45, 10:00, 10:30, 10:40, BUSES & TROLLEYBUSES
10:55, 11:25, 11:30, 11:45, 11:55, 12:35, 12:50, 13:10, All buses and trolleybuses in Vilnius are owned and
13:25, 13:45, 14:00, 14:40, 15:00, 15:30, 15:40, 16:10, operated by the Municipality. Paper tickets for single
16:35, 16:40, 16:50, 17:00, 17:30, 17:45, 18:10, 18:45, journeys are no longer available from kiosks and can
19:10, 19:50, 20:00, 20:55, 22:15 only be bought from the driver, with the fare currently
priced at €1 for a single journey on one vehicle. Unless
Valid until September 8, 2018. you plan on spending a lot of time using public
Not all services listed. Schedule subject to change. For transport whilst in Vilnius, this relatively simple system
more information visit www.autobusubilietai.lt. should be more than adequate although it’s worth
mentioning the alternative, namely the Vilniečio Kortelė,
an electronic ticket available for €1.50 from kiosks
LONG-DISTANCE BUSES around town. Technically a brilliant idea, the Vilniečio
All long-distance national and international buses leave Kortelė is a bit confusing in reality due to the variety
from Vilnius’ main bus station (autobusų stotis). Although of credits it’s possible to add to it. The two most useful
tickets for many journeys can be bought directly from the top-up options, available at kiosks around the city, are to
driver it’s worth getting one in advance at no extra cost. top up with either journeys lasting for up to 30 minutes
The ticket office for national bus services is located inside at €0.65 a trip or up to 60 minutes for €0.90. These can
the waiting room. International tickets can be bought then be used easily by holding the card against the
from several different outlets found scattered around the yellow machine on all buses and trolleybuses which
building as well as from a number of travel agencies in automatically take the fare off the card.
the city. You might be surprised to learn that bus travel in Alternatively, put any amount you choose on the
Lithuania is more expensive than using the train. card and select which length journey you want when
using the machine on board the vehicle. Other options
BUS STATION (AUTOBUSŲ STOTIS) are available for tickets valid from one to 270 days,
The city’s bus station is very central, just to the south of although we recommend you get a local to help you if
the Old Town. It’s not the prettiest building in Vilnius but choosing one of these. You can find out all you need to
it’s always efficient.QI‑12, Sodų 22, tel. 1661, www.toks. know about schedules online at www.vilniustransport.
lt. Open 07:00 - 19:00, Ticket office open 06:00 - 19:00. lt and more about the Vilniečio Kortelė at www.
J­A vilniusticket.lt.
8 Vilnius In Your Pocket vilnius.inyourpocket.com
Arriving & Getting Around
TAXIS PARKING IN VILNIUS
Despite creeping taxi (taksi) prices, travelling by taxi in
Vilnius remains relatively cheap, especially if you order Street parking in central
one in advance by phone or via an app. Taxis in Lithuania Vilnius is divided into
are recognisable by their compulsory yellow number colour-coded zones –
plates. Make sure the meter’s running and set to the blue, red, yellow and
correct tariff before setting off. Rates are usually higher green. Colour-coded
in the early hours of the morning. Some drivers may parking metres will eat
deliberately set it to a higher rate if they think they’re your coins and spit out
transporting hapless tourists, for example from the a little printed ticket.
airport, but in most cases the era of fleecing passengers Signs showing circles
is over. Prices listed below are for standard daytime with numbers inside
journeys within the city limits. them, meaning coins,
and parking metres are
EKIPAŽAS sometimes cunningly
€0.58/km.Qtel. 1446, www.ekipazastaksi.lt. €0.58/km. concealed or placed miles from the parking zone in
JAZZEXPRESS question, so be careful. (And keep any valuables, even
Qtel. 1428, www.en.jazzexpress.lt/. €0.72/km. just plastic bags, hidden in the boot while you’re away
SMART TAXI from the car.)
Call or use the website or app (where you can also pre- Occasionally there are street signs next to small
book cars) and you can track your vehicle as it arrives.Qtel. parking areas that have an image of a car on a verge
1820/(+370) 52 00 08 20, www.smarttaxi.lt. €0.69/km. with no colours attached and no numbered coins,
STANDART TAXI meaning you can park there free of charge. But they’re
Qtel. (+370) 52 40 00 04/1422, www.standart-taksi.lt/ few and far between.
about-standart-taxi.html. €0.67/km. In paid parking spots, it’s actually far easier to pay
via the m.Parking app. Download it for Android or iOS,
enter your car registration number, choose the colour-
coded zone and click to start using by sliding up the
INTERNATIONAL BUS image of a virtual gearstick. Slide it back down again
SCHEDULE when you’re back in the car to stop it charging you.
This works only through the internet provided by your
From Vilnius To Vilnius mobile operator.
Dep. Arr. Destination Dep. Arr. And a pay-by-SMS system is in operation too, but to
14:30 06:40 BERLIN 20:30 14:25 use that you have to have a local SIM card. Send an SMS
to the number 1332 with magic words ‘Start X AAA000’,
14:30 16:45 COLOGNE 10:15 14:25
but substituting X with the code for your colour-coded
14:30 02:15 POZNAŃ 00:30 14:25 zone: M – blue, R – red, G – yellow, Z – green, and
02:30 07:05 RIGA 02:10 06:10 AAA000 for your car registration number. To halt the
06:00 10:30 RIGA 11:45 16:00 payment, send another message to 1322 with the word
07:00 11:25 RIGA 16:20 20:30 ‘Stop’. Photo courtesy of www.vilnius-tourism.lt

10:00 14:45 RIGA 18:00 22:15


21:30 01:40 RIGA 22:00 02:20
TRAINS
Vilnius’ main train station (geležinkelio stotis) handles
14:30 18:30 STUTTGART 08:00 14:25 services to a number of destinations within Lithuania as
07:00 16:15 TALLINN 11:30 21:30 well as international trains. Most tickets can be bought from
21:30 06:35 TALLINN 21:30 06:10 a row of kiosks to the right of the main entrance. Tickets
for international trains can also be purchased from a small
07:00 16:05 WARSAW 07:00 15:35
office inside. With the exception of some international
14:30 22:30 WARSAW 21:00 05:20 services, tickets can be bought on board trains from the
21:00 06:00 WARSAW 20:50 06:20 conductor for which a €1.45 commission is charged.
21:00 18:05 VIENNA 23:20 21:00
TRAIN STATION (GELEŽINKELIO STOTIS)
Buses are usually quicker, more flexible and more
Schedule valid until September 8, 2018 and subject to popular than trains in Lithuania, but rail services to some
change during the lifetime of this guide. Not all services places, such as Kaunas, are generally excellent.QI‑12,
listed. More information at www.eurolines.lt Geležinkelio 16, tel. (+370) 70 05 51 11, www.litrail.lt.
Ticket office open 24hrs. J
facebook.com/VilniusInYourPocket Summer 2018 9
Arriving & Getting Around
TRAIN SCHEDULE
Dep. Arr. Destination Dep. Arr.
04:40 ¹ 05:50 KAUNAS 05:00 ³ 06:25
04:45 06:21 KAUNAS 05:30 07:04
06:21 07:37 KAUNAS 06:20 ¹ 07:38
07:30 08:49 KAUNAS 07:08 08:37
08:43 10:16 KAUNAS 08:32 09:30
10:08 11:41 KAUNAS 09:14 10:51
11:40 13:13 KAUNAS 11:05 12:41
13:45 15:18 KAUNAS 13:46 15:20
14:40 16:15 KAUNAS 15:55 17:32
16:50 18:23 KAUNAS 16:51 17:57
The train to Klaipėda Howard Jarvis
17:50 18:57 KAUNAS 17:31 19:08
17:58 ² 19:31 KAUNAS 19:11 ¹ 20:48 APPS TO RIDE
18:50 20:26 KAUNAS 19:59 21:30
19:41 21:16 KAUNAS 20:27 21:48 TRAFI, FOR PUBLIC TRANSPORT
20:37 ¹ 22:10 KAUNAS 21:34 23:02
06:50 11:02 KLAIPĖDA 06:40 10:55 Vilnius’ bus and trolleybus network
is incredibly easy to use, as long as
16:45 20:32 KLAIPĖDA 16:05 20:19
you buy a ticket from a kiosk or the
17:45 21:55 KLAIPĖDA 17:55 21:55 driver, then punch it in the puncher
07:15 09:45 MINSK 10:35 13:35 to validate it. To plan your route on
16:05 19:00 MINSK 19:30 22:00 public transport, an app for your
20:10 09:10 MOSCOW 17:20 06:23 smartphone makes things even
04:50 05:23 TRAKAI 06:22 07:00 easier. A great tool for advance
planning, the app, which is also in
07:49 08:24 TRAKAI 09:20 09:57
English, figures out how to get from
12:32 13:05 TRAKAI 13:15 13:53 A to B. Just type in your starting
18:24 18:59 TRAKAI 19:21 19:59 point (ordinary letters also count for tricky Lithuanian
20:30 21:05 TRAKAI 21:40 22:18 letters) and destination or pin the locations on a map,
and it will immediately give you a choice of times for
¹ Mon, Tue, Wed, Thu, Fri, Sun. ² Sat, Sun. transport plus any manageable short distances you can
³ Mon, Tue, Wed, Thu, Fri, Sat. ⁴ Mon ⁵ Sun (+1 hour). do on foot. Often your ticket can be used on a second
Not all services listed. Schedule valid until September bus or trolleybus if the validator prints the date and
8, 2018 and subject to change. More information at time, and the app will tell you if this is possible. The app
www.litrail.lt. is free, works brilliantly and also does the job in Kaunas,
Klaipėda, Šiauliai and Panevėžys.

TAXIFY AND ETAKSI


If you don’t have the patience for
public transport and need to travel
quickly, there are a couple of nifty
apps for ordering taxis. Taxify
allows you to compare rates, arrival
times, even car models, letting you
send for the cab of your choice to
your location without you having
to chat to anyone on the phone.
Drivers have to register to create a
profile, so there should be no funny business. Similarly,
eTaksi allows you to quickly tap in where you are,
where you want to get to and how many people are
going, then shows you where your taxi is, even as it’s
arriving. Ooh, the wonders of technology.
Vilnius Railway Station Lila Jarvis

10 Vilnius In Your Pocket vilnius.inyourpocket.com


Vilnius Basics
ALCOHOL BASIC DATA
Lithuanian beer (alus) is among the best in the world.
Without doubt. Test as many as you can before settling on POPULATION
a regular brand! The big names are Švyturys from Klaipėda, Lithuania 2,821,674 Vilnius 635,377
Utenos from Utena and Kalnapilis from Panevėžys, but there ETHNIC COMPOSITION (Lithuania)
are loads of smaller varieties to try. Visit a microbrewery Lithuanians 86.9% Poles 5.6% Russians 4.6%
(see Nightlife) or go for a selection from your nearest menu. Belarusians 1.2% Ukrainians 0.6% Others 1.1%
Lithuanian beers tend to be stronger than their Western
counterparts, making the forming of the simplest words TERRITORY
(such as alus) a challenge after just a couple. But the variety 65,303 square kilometres Roughly twice the size of
is as eclectic as anywhere else. In the Old Town expect to Belgium, and the largest of the three Baltic nations.
pay about €3 for half a litre. Lithuanian vodka (degtinė) Fertile lowland, peppered with many lakes. North to
is quality too, though in bars it defers to beer in terms of south, the greatest distance is 276km, east to west is
popularity. Among local spirits, look out for starka, a 15th- 373km
century concoction of syrupy rye vodka fortified with apple
leaves and lime blossom, and the local semi-illicit firewater BORDERS
samagonas. Imported alcohol isn’t cheap, so buy the local Baltic Sea 99km Belarus 502km Latvia 453km Poland
stuff. Lithuania is currently tightening its booze laws, so 91km Russia (Kaliningrad) 227km
that from the start of 2018 youngsters under 20 will not be LONGEST RIVER
able to buy booze. Alcohol shopping sales times will also Nemunas 937km (475km in Lithuania)
change, to Mon-Sat 10:00-20:00, Sun 10:00-15:00.
LARGEST LAKE
Drūkščiai 4,479ha
BORDERS
EU membership and Schengen agreements have as good HIGHEST POINT
as removed all border formalities with Latvia and Poland, Aukštasis 293.8m
although getting in and out of Belarus and Kaliningrad
remains a process wrapped up in red tape for holders of most
passports. Visas for both can be obtained from the Belarusian DISABLED TRAVELLERS
and Russian embassies in Vilnius, as well as from a few travel While things have greatly improved for the disabled in
agencies. For more information visit www.pasienis.lt. recent few years, Lithuania is still a tough place to get
around on anything other than two well functioning legs.
Even places that claim to be wheelchair friendly can be
CRIME & SAFETY flanked by deep kerbs or stairs, or are located on cobbled
It is not an exaggeration to say that Lithuania is one of the streets. Wheelchair accessibility for public buildings outside
safest countries to visit in Europe. While petty crime, mainly the capital is improving slowly. Some newer trolleybuses
in the form of pickpocketing, is as much of a problem here and buses in Vilnius have low entry platforms, spaces for
as anywhere else in the world, unprovoked violent crime is wheelchairs and hearing loops.
almost unheard of. Even late at night you will not usually be
presented with any potential threats while walking around
city centres, and this goes for single women as much as for LOCAL TIME
large groups of lads. Lithuania is in the Eastern European Time (EET) zone at
GMT+2hrs. When it’s 12:00 in Vilnius it’s 05:00 in New
York, 10:00 in London, 11:00 in Warsaw, 13:00 in Moscow
TOURIST INFORMATION and 19:00 in Tokyo. Eastern European Summer Time (EEST,
GMT+3hrs) falls between the last Sundays of March and
VILNIUS TOURIST INFORMATION CENTRE October respectively.
Tour bookings for individuals and groups, maps, audio
guides, Vilnius City Card, tourist-related leaflets and
books, info on cultural events (www.vilnius-events. MONEY & COSTS
lt), taxis, accommodation booking, etc. There’s also Almost all places in Vilnius accept major credit cards
a smaller information centre in the old Town Hall on including MasterCard and Visa and ATMs are ubiquitous
Didžioji Street.QH‑9, Didžioji g. 31, tel. (+370) 52 62 in urban areas, though if you’re planning a trip to the
96 60, fax (+370) 52 62 81 69, www.vilnius-tourism. countryside make sure you take plenty of cash along,
lt. Open 09:00 - 18:00. Also at Also at Pilies 2, just in case. Lithuania is no longer the cheap country for
Rodūnios Kelias 2-1 (Vilnius International Airport). foreigners it used to be, but it still offers great value to
J­A­W most visitors coming from western Europe and North
America.
facebook.com/VilniusInYourPocket Summer 2018 11
Vilnius Basics
PLASTIC & GLASS EXCHANGE RATES
Lithuania imposes a super-efficient eco-system for your
empty plastic and glass bottles and beer cans. Most 1£=€1.13, 1US$=€0.85 (June 13, 2018)

supermarkets have a supirkimas, either inside or nearby


outside – a couple of machines where you can load each
one at a time and hear them being scrunched into nothing.
Make sure they’re completely empty. At the end, press the SMOKING
screen and it’ll print a ticket. Take it to the counter inside The locals by and large like a cigarette (and compared to
the supermarket and they’ll give you some cash. Simple! places like the UK and the Nordics, cigarettes are cheap),
but that has not stopped Lithuania adopting some tough
anti-smoking legislation. Smoking is banned in almost all
RELIGION indoor spaces, including cafes, bars, pubs and clubs, except
This is a predominantly Catholic country with around 77 in carefully separated smoking rooms: look for the smoking
per cent of the Lithuanian population pledging allegiance symbol in our listings. Having a puff is now also banned in
to the Pope. Pagan Lithuanians avoided Christianity until several outdoor spaces in Vilnius, such as Kudirka Square
relatively late in European history, finally converting for and Bernardinų Sodas, as well as at bus stops, and smoking
political reasons in 1387 in the eastern half of the country there can leave you open to a fine.
and in 1413 in the west. But the country’s pagan heritage
can still be seen in many aspects of life including the days of
the week (literally First Day, Second Day, etc.), the continued SPORTS
naming of its female population after flowers and plants and Lithuanians go nuts about basketball. It’s often even
the countless festivals throughout the year that remain very referred to as Lithuania’s second religion. Whenever there’s
much as they were before the coming of Christianity. The area an important game on, the nation shuts down to huddle
that makes up contemporary Lithuania has historically been round the nearest TV screen. To watch players in action or
the proud home of countless religions over the centuries, just practising, visit Siemens Arena.
among them Russian Orthodox, Protestantism, Islam and of
course Judaism. The first of these makes up about 5 per cent
of the population. It’s considered polite for men to remove STREET SMARTS
their hats and for women to cover their shoulders when Below is a list of Lithuanian street and place names. We
visiting a Catholic or Orthodox church. shorten some of these as is standard practice using just the
main name. For example, Gedimino Prospektas is simply
referred to as Gedimino.
SERVICE
There are exceptions (and we take pride in exposing such Aikštė Square
places in our many online listings), but as a rule private- Alėja Avenue
sector service in Lithuania (particularly in Vilnius and Gatvė Street
Kaunas) has improved beyond description over the 25-odd Kelias Road, way
years we’ve been publishing Vilnius In Your Pocket. Plentas Highway
Prospektas Avenue
MARKET VALUES Tiltas Bridge

Prices in Lithuania vary but can seem quite high


compared to neighbouring countries like Poland. Here
are some typical everyday products and prices.

McDonald's Big Mac € 2.70


Snickers € 0.50
0.5ltr vodka (shop) € 7.00
0.5ltr beer (shop) € 1.10
Loaf of white bread € 0.60
20 Marlboros € 3.50
1 ltr of unleaded petrol (95) € 1.20
Local transport ticket (1 journey) €1
Cinema ticket €6
Street-smart street art Howard Jarvis

12 Vilnius In Your Pocket vilnius.inyourpocket.com


Vilnius Basics
NATIONAL HOLIDAYS LEARN LITHUANIAN!
January 1 New Year’s Day & National Flag Day Attempting discourse in Lithuanian may seem terrifying, but
February 16 Independence Day fortunately for you a vast number of locals, especially in the
March 11 Restoration of Independence Day restaurants, bars, clubs and cafés in the city centre, have a
April 19 (2019) Good Friday (Catholic) healthy command of the English language. Not only that, they
April 21 (2019) Easter Sunday (Catholic) often want to practice their already brilliant English on you.
April 22 (2019) Easter Monday (Catholic) Though you can probably get by without it, learning a few key
May 1 Labour Day Lithuanian phrases will charm the Lithuanians you’re trying to
speak to and may even win you friends and admirers.
May 13 (2019) Mother’s Day
And, unlike English, words in Lithuanian actually tend to be
June 24 Joninės (Midsummer) pronounced the way they are spelled. Once you know how
July 6 Crowning of King Mindaugas to pronounce each letter or letter combination, that’s a great
August 15 Žolinė (Assumption) help. Many of the letters sound the same as they do in English,
November 1 All Saints’ Day and those that don’t we list here, together with some basic
December 25, 26 Christmas (Catholic) words and phrases. Go on, have a go! Sėkmės! (Good luck!)
Basic Pronunciation
TOILETS ‘a’ sounds like ‘u’ in umbrella
‘c’ sounds like ‘ts’ in what’s
‘ą’ sounds like ‘a’ in arm
‘č’ sounds like ‘ch’ in cherry
Just utter the two magic words kur tualetas? (where’s the ‘e’ and ‘ę’ sound like ‘a’ in apple
toilet?) and away you go. Bars and hotels tend to let you ‘ė’ sounds a bit like a short ‘yeah’ ‘g’ sounds like ‘g’ in glue
‘i’ sounds like ‘i’ in igloo
use their facilities, but some enforce a small charge for ‘į’ and ‘y’ sound like ‘ee’ in cheese ‘j’ sounds like ‘y’ in yes
non-patrons. With the exception of a few non-touristy bars, ‘š’ sounds like ‘sh’ as in sheet
toilets are usually clean and stocked with plenty of paper ‘r’ is always rolled (if you can manage it)
and soap. One relic from days gone by that refuses to go ‘u’ sounds like ‘oo’ in book
away, even in many of the swankiest establishments, is the ‘ų’ and ‘ū’ sound like ‘oo’ in spoon
provision of a bucket kept next to the toilet, used for the ‘ž’ sounds like the ‘s’ in treasure ‘o’ sounds like the ‘a’ in call
‘ch’ sounds like ‘h’ at the back of the throat
collection of spent paper. ‘dž’ sounds like “J” in John
Lithuanian Words & Phrases
VISAS English Lithuanian Pronunciation
Lithuania is a member of both the European Union and the Yes Taip (as in ‘tape’)
No Ne (ne!)
Schengen border-free travel area. Visitors from the EU can Hi/Bye (informal) Labas/Atia (LAbas!/AT-ya!)
stay here as long as they like, while visitors from 30 or so Hello Laba diena (laba DYEN-a)
other countries (including Australia, Canada, Japan, New Good morning Labas rytas (labas REE-tas)
Zealand, Singapore, South Korea and the United States) Good evening Labas vakaras (labas VA-ka-ras)
Good-bye Viso gero (VEE-so garo)
don’t require a visa to stay for up to 90 days within a six Good night Labanakt (la-BA-nakt)
month period. A visa issued by or for any Schengen country Please Prašau (pru-show)
is valid in Lithuania. For more information, including the Thank you Ačiū (A-choo)
full-list of visa-free countries, take a look at www.urm.lt. Excuse me/Sorry Atsiprašau (AT-si-pru-show)
My name is… Mano vardas yra… (MA-no VAR-das ee-ra…)
I’m from England. Aš esu iš Anglijos. (ush e-soo ish AN-glee-yos)
Do you speak English? Ar kalbate angliškai? (ur kul-BA-ta UN-glish-kay?)
I don’t speak Lithuanian. Aš nekalbu lietuviškai. (ush ne-KUL-bu lie-TU-vish-kay)
I don’t understand. Aš nesuprantu. (ush ne-su-PRAN-tu)
Two beers, please. Du alaus, prašau. (doo a-LAUS, pru-show)
Cheers! Į sveikatą! (ee svay-KAA-ta!)
Where are the toilets? Kur tualetai? (koor tooa-LIET-ay?)
You are beautiful. Formal: Jūs esate graži (to a (yoos es-a-te gra-ZHI)
woman)/gražus (to a man). (yoos es-a-te gra-ZHOOS)
Informal: Tu esi graži (to a (too es-i gra-ZHI)
woman)/gražus (to a man). (too es-i gra-ZHOOS)
I love you. Aš tave myliu. (ush ta-ve MEE-lioo)
Please take me home. Formal: Prašau parveškite (pru-show par-VESH-ki-ta mu-ne
mane namo na-mo)
Informal: Parvešk mane (pru-show par-VESHK mu-ne
namo na-mo)
Call me! Formal: Paskambinkite man (pa-SKUM-bink-eeta mun)
Informal: Paskambink man (pa_SKUM-bink mun)
Airport Oro uostas (oro u-WOS-tas)
Train station Geležinkelio stotis (ge-le-ZHIN-kel-yo sto-tiss)
Bus station Autobusų stotis (ow-to-BOO-soo sto-tis)
One ticket to… Vieną bilietą į… (Vienna BEE-le-ta ee…)

facebook.com/VilniusInYourPocket Summer 2018 13


History
The Lithuanian state arose and strengthened to counter the 19th century Vilnius University acts as a hotbed of dissent
religious fervour of crusading German knights. Lithuania was against the tsarist government, culminating in the1831
the last European country to convert to Christianity, and has November Uprising, which leads to the closing of the in-
seen countless invasions and occupations over the centuries. stitution. Russification ensues with non-Orthodox churches
forcibly closed, the Lithuanian language banned in 1864
7th-2nd centuries BC The first Baltic tribes establish and the country named the Northwest Region. The ban
themselves on what’s now known as Lithuanian territory. on the Latin script forces the smuggling in of books from
neighbouring East Prussia. Another uprising takes place in
11th century The word Lithuania is first used in written 1863 and General Muravyov (The Hangman) is sent from
texts in AD1009. At the same time, a wooden castle is built Moscow to restore order, resulting in deaths by hanging for
on Vilnius’ Gediminas Hill (Gedimino Kalnas), leading to the most of the leading activists. The repression is countered
construction of a diminutive settlement beneath it. and defied by a revival of Lithuanian culture and tradition.
In 1883 Jonas Basanavičius (1851-1927) publishes the first
13th century Žemaitians defeat the Livonian Knights at Lithuanian-language newspaper, Auszra (Aušra, or Dawn).
the Battle of Saulė in 1236, establishing the settlement of
Šiauliai. After uniting local chieftains, on July 6, 1253 Min- 20th century During the WWI German occupation of
daugas (circa 1203-1263) is crowned Lithuania’s one and 1915-1918 the Lithuanian Council proclaims independ-
only king. During his reign as the first Christian sovereign of ence on February 16, 1918. As the Germans retreat, the
the state, Vilnius Cathedral is built. However, the majority of Lithuanian state comes under attack by the Polish General
the population remains pagan. Józef Piłsudski (1867-1935) who seizes control of Vilnius
and areas south of it from1920-1939. Poland maintains
14th century In 1323 Grand Duke Gediminas (circa 1275- control of these areas by claiming they were a portion of
1341) sends letters to various Germanic-speaking towns, the pre-war Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth. Kaunas
inviting their craftsmen and merchants to settle in Vilnius becomes the interim capital of Lithuania until1940. During
with the promise of religious freedom. Trying to ensure the inter-war period independent Lithuania prospers un-
peace, in 1325 he forms a union with Poland by marrying der the 14-year dictatorship (1926-1940) of the nationalist
his daughter Aldona to the Polish king’s son. The Polish- president Antanas Smetona (1874-1944). Lithuanian inde-
Lithuanian Commonwealth comes into being with the pendence ends with the clandestine signing on August 23,
1387 Krėva Union, whereby Gediminas’ grandson Jogaila 1939 of the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact between Hitler and
(circa 1348-1434) becomes a Polish king by marrying the Stalin, who carve up Europe into portions to be controlled
Polish Princess Jadwiga (circa 1373-1399). Even with the by Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union. Lithuania is sub-
increased security, the Teutonic Knights still manage to ject to both Soviet and Nazi occupation. Between 1941-
invade, resulting in the 1390 burning of the wood-con- 1944the Nazis and their Lithuanian henchmen organise
structed Vilnius. the mass murder of over 200,000 Jews, 94% of the entire
Litvak population. The return of the Red Army and the re-
15th century The Teutonic Knights are eventually defeated incorporation of Lithuania into the USSR on July 7, 1944
onJuly 15, 1410 by joint Polish-Lithuanian armies led by Jo- results in the deportation of some 250,000 Lithuanians to
gaila and Grand Duke Vytautas (1350-1430) at the Battle of Siberia, a task they’d already begun in1940 before the Nazis
Grunwald (Lithuanian, Žalgiris. German, Tannenberg), one arrived. Lithuanian partisans, dubbed the Forest Brothers
of the greatest battles in medieval Europe. The country (Miško Broliai), wage guerrilla warfare until 1953. In an act
flourishes and by 1430 the borders extend from the Baltic of protest against the Soviet occupation, onMay 14, 1972
to the Black Sea. 19-year-old student Romas Kalanta sets fire to himself in
public in Kaunas, dying from his wounds.
16th century The Renaissance sees marked cultural ad-
vances, notably the printing of the first Lithuanian book
in1547, and the founding of Vilnius University in1579. The INDEPENDENCE & BEYOND
end of the Jogaila dynasty in 1572results in the political and 1988
cultural marginalisation of Lithuania. Polish becomes the June 3 The Lithuanian reform movement Sąjūdis is founded
state language. The Livonian Wars (1558-1582) with Russia by some 500 representatives of the intelligentsia, advocat-
and Sweden drain the Commonwealth’s resources. ing openness, democracy and sovereignty. August 23
Some 250,000 people gather in Vilnius to mark the 49th
18th century At the start of the 18th century both Swed- anniversary of the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact.October 7 The
ish and Russian forces try to seize control of Vilnius. In1795 Lithuanian flag is raised on Gediminas Castle.
Lithuania is incorporated into tsarist Russia. The 120-year
Russian occupation is only interrupted by a short libera- 1989
tion by Napoleon’s army in 1812 on his failed campaign August 23 An estimated 2,000,000 Lithuanians, Latvians
to Moscow. During the Napoleonic army’s return through and Estonians join hands in a human chain stretching the
Vilnius nearly 40,000 of his soldiers die due to starvation 650km between Vilnius and Tallinn to protest the 50th an-
and extreme cold. niversary of the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact.
14 Vilnius In Your Pocket vilnius.inyourpocket.com
History

The Battle of Grunwald (1875-1878) by Jan Matejko

1990 1998
January 11-13 Mikhail Gorbachev’s visit to Vilnius is far January 4 Valdas Adamkus is elected president. Adamkus,
from pleasant as 300,000 pro-independence demonstra- who fled Lithuania in 1944, was a senior official at the US
tors turn out to ‘welcome’ him. March 4 Pro-independence Environmental Protection Agency before returning to Lith-
Sąjūdis candidates win a majority in the first free elections in uania to run for president. December 21 Seimas abolishes
Lithuania since 1940. March 11 The Supreme Council (later the death penalty in response to international pressure
Parliament, or Seimas) declares the restoration of Lithuanian from the EU.
independence and demands the withdrawal of Soviet forc-
es. Vytautas Landsbergis is elected parliamentary chairman. 1999
April 17 Moscow imposes an economic blockade. December 13 Accession talks begin between Lithuania
and the EU with a projected date of 2004. A major stum-
1991 bling block is the decommissioning of the Ignalina Nuclear
January 13 Soviet forces try unsuccessfully to storm the Power Plant.
parliamentary building in Vilnius. A large crowd ensures the
delegates are safe inside. However, in a violent bid to reclaim
the media by storming the Television Tower, 14 people are 21ST CENTURY
killed. February 12 Iceland becomes the first country to 2004 January-April Impeachment hearings take place as
recognise an independent Lithuania. July 31 Seven border the new right-wing president Rolandas Paksas is found
guards and policemen are killed at the Medininkai border guilty of violating the constitution in his alleged dealings
checkpoint by Soviet special forces. August 21 The Moscow with unsavoury Russian business partners. April 2 Lithu-
putsch collapses. Soviet troops leave the buildings they’ve ania becomes a fully-fledged member of Nato, and then of
occupied since January. Lenin’s statue is removed from Vil- the EU on May 1. December 31 The Ignalina Nuclear Power
nius’ Lukiškių Square. A photograph of the event appears on Plant says farewell to the first of its two Chernobyl-style
the cover of Issue N°1 of Vilnius In Your Pocket, published on RBMK reactors. It finally closes at the end of 2009.
May 1, 1992. August 29 Sweden becomes the first Western
country to open an embassy in Vilnius.September 2 The USA 2009 Lithuania celebrates 1,000 years since its name
recognises Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia. September 17 All was first mentioned in written texts. Dalia Grybauskaitė
three Baltic countries are re-admitted into the UN. is inaugurated as the country’s first female president on
July 12.
1992
February 8 Lithuanians participate under their own flag at 2013 Lithuania takes over the Presidency of the Council
the Winter Olympics for the first time since 1928. of the European Union for a six month period from July 1.

1993 2014 May Dalia Grybauskaitė is re-elected president of


June 25 Lithuania’s pre-war currency the litas is re-intro- Lithuania.
duced. August 31 The last Russian soldier leaves Lithuania.
September 4-8 Pope John Paul II visits. 2015 January 1 Lithuania adopts the euro.

1994 2018 February 16 Lithuania stages huge celebrations to


December Vilnius’ Old Town joins the list of Unesco World mark 100 years since the restoration of its independence
Heritage sites. in 1918.
facebook.com/VilniusInYourPocket Summer 2018 15
What’s On

Street performer in the Old Town| Žydrūnė Ulinskaitė

Not surprisingly for a capital city there’s a lot of culture to MENO NIŠA
be had in Vilnius including some cracking classical music, Art to hang on your body as opposed to your wall, this
a bit of worthy contemporary art and the occasional combined gallery and workshop presents some of the best
faded Western rock star. Going to concerts and festivals in examples of the work of Lithuanian goldsmiths.QH‑10,
and around the city is a relatively inexpensive affair, with J. Basanavičiaus 1/13, tel. (+370) 52 31 38 11, www.
concert tickets often costing less than €15. Standards tend menonisa.lt/en/. Open 12:00 - 18:00, Sat 12:00 - 16:00.
to be high and the variety of events taking place is getting Closed Mon, Sun. J
bigger every year. For information on purchasing tickets,
ask your hotel reception or speak to the nice people at OLD CRAFTS WORKSHOP OF THE FINE CRAFTS
Vilnius Tourist Information. Read about more events and ASSOCIATION OF VILNIUS (VILNIAUS DAILIŲJŲ
buy tickets online at www.bilietai.lt or www.tiketa.lt. AMATŲ ASOCIACIJOS SENŲJŲ AMATŲ
DIRBTUVĖS)
An extraordinary organisation dedicated to both
ARTS & CRAFTS preserving and promoting a wide range of traditional
AMATŲ GILDIJA fine crafts including practictioners such as jewellers,
The ceramics artist Mindaugas Rutkauskas is almost ceramicists, book-binders and leather workers.
completely blind yet manages to produce wonderful work Operating out of studios and workshops spread
from classic earthenware crockery to complete ceramic around the city centre, the nice people who run the
stoves. He shares this workshop with several other artists. organisation arrange a fascinating array of things for
Feel free to have a poke around. Most of the stuff on display visitors to see and do including lectures, tours, hands-on
is for sale.QI‑10, Pranciškonų 6, tel. (+370) 64 53 80 44/ workshops and even a few events for children. Visiting
(+370) 52 12 05 20, www.amatugildija.lt. Open 11:00 - is a good opportunity to buy some unique and special
19:00. Closed Mon, Sun, Also at S. Skapo 3 - 34. J gifts and souvenirs. Their website has good information
in English.QJ‑10, Savičiaus 10, tel. (+370) 52 12 51
JONAS BUGAILIŠKIS ART STUDIO 69, www.seniejiamatai.lt. Open 11:00 - 19:00. Closed
A local mini-celebrity knocking out all manner of fabulous Mon. A­J
wooden eccentricities based on a combination of traditional
Lithuanian folk art and the contents of a very unique mind.
The studio is now also home to Bugailiškis’ daughter, the Get the In Your Pocket
painter Aistė Bugailiškytė-Kapočienė.QJ‑11, Aušros Vartų
17-10, tel. (+370) 65 23 66 13/+37052617666, www. City Essentials app
bugailiskis.com. By appointment only. J
16 Vilnius In Your Pocket vilnius.inyourpocket.com
What’s On
ST. CATHERINE’S CHURCH (ŠV. KOTRYNOS
CINEMAS BAŽNYČIA)
Films are usually shown in their original language with Originally belonging to a Benedictine convent when
Lithuanian subtitles. Animated films are usually dubbed. founded in 1618, after several fires St Catherine’s was rebuilt
in the 1740s by famed architect Jan Krzyzstof Glaubitz. The
FORUM CINEMAS VINGIS new design daringly created a nave that was as high as it
Mostly popular Hollywood films inside a dedicated was long, with a Baroque exterior that is elaborate on all
multiplex close to the city centre. There’s also a small new sides, not only in its twin-towered façade. There’s a rich
hall screening arthouse and foreign-language films.QE‑10, interior too, with excellent acoustics, making it a fabulous
Savanorių 7, tel. 1567, www.forumcinemas.lt. Box office venue for regular music concerts. The square behind the
open 10:30 - 22:00. Also at Ozo 25 (Akropolis). A­J church contains a bust of Stanisław Moniuszko, a 19th-
century Polish composer who lived in Vilnius and whose
MULTIKINO operas and songs are filled with fond references to the lost
Hollywood blockbusters inside a large shopping centre. Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth.QI‑9, Vilniaus 30, tel.
QH‑1, Ozo 18 (Ozas), tel. (+370) 62 05 15 58/(+370) (+370) 52 62 04 21, www.kultura.lt. J
52 19 53 76, www.multikino.lt. Box office open 10:00
- 22:00. A VAIDILOS KLASIKA
Vaidilos Klasika is an innovative musical programme
SKALVIJA spanning the entire concert season and aimed at the
The best place in the city for arthouse and underground highest artistic standards, bringing together leading
cinema, and meeting people who like it in the attached café- classical performers and young talent from Lithuania and
bar. It has been going for aeons and is well known among beyond. Top-class classical music performances take place
film lovers for its distinctive repertoire. Zooming in on non- inside the Vaidilos Theatre, a 19th-century neo-Gothic
commercial European and world cinema, it’s also a venue building that hosted its first play in Lithuanian in 1905.
for festivals, retrospectives and special screenings. One of its Badly damaged in World War II and rebuilt afterwards, the
many events is the Vilnius Documentary Film Festival at the venue began a new life in 2016, offering exclusive acoustics
end of September, the main documentary film platform in the ideal for solo and chamber performances in a classy,
Baltics that always screens rich and captivating films.QH‑7, A. chandeliered environment. Together with modern stage
Goštauto 2, tel. (+370) 52 61 05 05, www.skalvija.lt. Box equipment, it also boasts a Yamaha S6, a hand-crafted
office open an hour before the event. J­W premium-class grand piano.QA. Jakšto 9, tel. (+370) 67
25 50 95, www.vaidilosklasika.lt/.
CONCERT HALLS VILNIUS CONGRESS HALL (VILNIAUS KONGRESŲ
COMPENSA RŪMAI)
Located on a small street some way north of the city Home to the Lithuanian State Symphony Orchestra,
centre, this new concert hall hosts music concerts, theatre, this city-centre venue features some fine acoustics and
cultural events, conferences, parties and buffet receptions. organises everything from serious classical concerts to
QKernavės 84, tel. (8-618) 85180/1588, www. shows for children.QI‑7, Vilniaus 6-1, tel. (+370) 52 61 88
compensakoncertusale.lt. A 28, www.lvso.lt. Box office open 11:00 - 15:00, 15:45 -
19:00, Sat 11:00 - 14:45. Closed Sun. A­J
LITHUANIAN NATIONAL PHILHARMONIC
CONCERT HALL (LIETUVOS NACIONALINĖ VILNIUS UNIVERSITY BOTANICAL GARDEN
FILHARMONIJA) A gorgeous variety of plants, trees and flowers some
Featuring a concert hall and a smaller chamber hall, the way north of the city centre. In summer, a series of truly
Lithuanian National Symphony Orchestra was established memorable evening pop concerts takes place here.
in 1940. Concerts are performed by a range of ensembles QKairėnų 43, tel. (+370) 52 19 31 33, www.botanikos-
including the aforementioned orchestra as well as the sodas.vu.lt/en. Open 09:00 - 17:00, Fri 09:00 - 16:00, Sat,
Čiurlionis String Quartet and the chamber ensemble Sun 12:00 - 16:00.
Musica Humana to name but a few.QJ‑10, Aušros Vartų
5, tel. (+370) 52 66 52 33/(+370) 52 66 52 16, www.
nationalphilharmonic.eu. Box office open 10:00 - 13:30,
14:00 - 19:00, Sun 10:00 - 12:00. Closed Mon. A­J

SIEMENS ARENA
The quintessential all-purpose arena staging everything
from international basketball matches to big name rock
concerts.QH‑1, Ozo 14, tel. (+370) 52 47 75 76, www.
siemensarena.lt. Box office open 10:00 - 18:00. Fri, Sat,
Sun open two hours before the event. A Three Muses sculpture outside the National Drama Theatre

facebook.com/VilniusInYourPocket Summer 2018 17


What’s On
VARTAI
GALLERIES Arguably the best and most influential contemporary
CONTEMPORARY ART CENTRE (ŠIUOLAIKINIO gallery in the country. Find works in all media by the top
MENO CENTRAS) Lithuanian artists working in their fields. Vartai also organises
Vilnius’ very own monstrous carbuncle on the face of an exhibitions by artists from abroad. Recommended.QI‑9,
old friend, this 1968 concrete masterpiece conceals one Vilniaus 39 (Vilniaus Mokytojų Namai), tel. (+370) 52 12
of the country’s leading galleries for both Lithuanian and 29 49/(+370) 65 78 24 09, www.galerijavartai.lt. Open
international contemporary art. Surplus to the 2,400 square 12:00 - 18:00, Closed Mon, Sun. J
metres of exhibition space, the Contemporary Art Centre
also organises conferences and lectures, features a superb VILNIUS PICTURE GALLERY (VILNIAUS
reading room and hosts a rather good bar.QI‑10, Vokiečių PAVEIKSLŲ GALERIJA)
2, tel. (+370) 52 12 19 45, www.cac.lt/en. Open 12:00 - Housed inside the charming 17th-century Chodkevičiai
20:00. Closed Mon. Admission: €3/1.50. U­J (Chodkiewicz) family palace, this splendid little museum
is of the type in which a menagerie of middle-aged ladies
NATIONAL ART GALLERY (NACIONALINĖ DAILĖS shuttle you around from room to room like a pinball.
GALERIJA) Ignore them if you can, and enjoy a great collection of local
Found inside a renovated and enlarged structure that once painting, drawing and sculpture plus a couple of rooms
gloriously housed the Museum of the Revolution of the stuffed full of exemplary furniture, all of it representing the
Lithuanian Soviet Socialist Republic, this bold endeavour last several hundred years of achievement. They also put on
now showcases the works of a multitude of artists of temporary exhibitions here, of which some are well worth
Lithuanian origin from the 20th and 21st centuries. It’s checking out.QJ‑9, Didžioji 4, tel. (+370) 52 12 42 58,
organised to highlight particular styles, eras and political www.ldm.lt/en/. Open 11:00 - 18:00, Sun 12:00 - 17:00.
attitudes to art in Lithuania under the various regimes of Closed Mon. Admission €1.80/0.90. J
the past hundred years and also stages temporary shows
that are well worth visiting.QG‑5, Konstitucijos 22, tel.
(+370) 52 12 29 97, www.ndg.lt. Open 11:00 - 19:00, Thu INDEPENDENT CULTURAL
12:00 - 20:00, Sun 11:00 - 17:00. Closed Mon. Admission CENTRES
€1.80/0.90. A­J­W HOUSE OF PUGLU
Leftfield theatrical performances for adults and
RUPERT fantabulous plays with puppets for kids, almost everything
A contemporary art gallery set beautifully amid the pines in Lithuanian of course.QVilniaus g. 16, tel. (8-693)
in a bend in the river, a little way north of the city centre, 98586, www.houseofpuglu.com.
features regular exhibitions of international artists as well
as talks, performances and screenings; see Rupert’s website LOFTAS
for details. QVaidilutės 79, tel. (+370) 68 25 49 30, www. Loftas (Loft) is an independent, non-profit cultural centre
rupert.lt/en/. Open 09:00 - 17:00, Closed Sat, Sun. based inside a fabulous old factory providing events and
creative opportunities for the community including parties,
THE ROOM: ART BOOKS WINE fashion shows, seminars, film screenings and more. It’s at
Here’s yet another Vilnius novelty for you – a gallery its best, however, as a live venue for touring techno fiends
combining art, books and Portuguese wines. Found and indie hipsters, both local and international. Details
towards the further end of Užupis, the glaringly lit cuboid about all events, including those held on the summer
space run by a philologist couple conceals the pricey ports terrace, see the funky website, which is also in English.
and wines on shelves at the back, behind rotating displays QG‑12, Švitrigailos 29, tel. (+370) 65 67 46 77, www.
of brushwork by whatever local artist has taken the couple’s menufabrikas.lt. Working hours depend on repertoire.
fancy. Some of the wines have the year they were bottled T­B­E­J­6­W­K
stamped boldly on the front, making them potential
birthday gifts, the earliest going back to the 1930s. The
tomes, meanwhile, are mostly newly published cultural
and art books.QPolocko 17, tel. (8-685) 57197. Open
11:00 - 19:00, Sat 11:00 - 15:00, Closed Sun. A­J

TITANIKAS
A series of exhibition halls owned and curated by the
neighbouring Vilnius Art Academy, exhibitions run the
gamut from student shows to serious work from home
and abroad in just about every conceivable medium.
QJ‑8, Maironio 3, tel. (+370) 52 10 01 36, www.vda.lt/
titanikas. Open 12:00 - 18:00, Sun 12:00 - 16:00. Closed
Mon, Tue. J Concert at Loftas

18 Vilnius In Your Pocket vilnius.inyourpocket.com


What’s On
Get the In Your Pocket
City Essentials app

OPERA & BALLET


LITHUANIAN NATIONAL OPERA & BALLET
THEATRE (LIETUVOS NACIONALINIS OPEROS IR
BALETO TEATRAS)
A stunning construction opened in 1974 and offering
the whole range of works. Worth a look inside even if you
Jose Gonzalez is playing at the Galapagai festival
don’t plan on attending anything.QH‑7, A. Vienuolio 1, Photo Jose Gonzalez/Facebook
tel. (+370) 52 62 07 27, www.opera.lt. Box office open
10:00 - 19:00, Sat 10:00 - 18:30, Sun 10:00 - 15:00. A­J LIVE MUSIC
15.07 18:00 » 10 FACES OF THE TRUMPET
Latin American rhythms with Venezuelan trumpeter
PHOTOGRAPHY Francisco Pacho Flores.QI‑9, St. Catherine’s Church,
PROSPEKTO GALLERY (PROSPEKTO GALERIJA) Vilniaus 30, tel. (+370) 52 62 04 21, from €9.20.
Owned and run by the Lithuanian Photographers’ Union,
Prospekto Galerija is a hit and miss affair but really worth 19.07 20:00 » TOVE LO
the effort just in case. Exhibitions range from the sublime to This Swedish singer-songwriter has been called “Sweden’s
the awful, often let down partially by the artists themselves darkest pop export” by Rolling Stone, known for her
who submit badly presented work that’s often lit with no raw, grunge-influenced take on pop music.QVilnius
thought to the work. There’s also a small shop where you University Botanical Garden, Kairėnų 43, tel. (+370) 52
can buy books and postcards featuring the work of many 19 31 33. €31.
famous and obscure Lithuanian art, news and documentary
photographers past and present.QG‑7, Gedimino 43, tel. 23.07 20:00 » JESSIE WARE
(+370) 52 61 83 38, www.photography.lt. Open 12:00 - An English singer-songwriter whose debut studio album
18:00, Sat 12:00 - 16:00. Closed Mon, Sun. J Devotion (2012) peaked at number five on the UK Albums
Chart, Jessie does pop, R&B and soul.QVilnius University
Botanical Garden, Kairėnų 43, tel. (+370) 52 19 31 33.
THEATRES €40 - 60.
Almost all performances are in Lithuanian or Russian. Some
theatres provide occasional simultaneous translation. 24.07 19:00 » CHRIS RUEBENS: MUY BIEN,
Check to make sure before booking tickets. ADIOS!
The versatile Belgian-Lithuanian acoustic guitarist and
LĖLĖ PUPPET THEATRE (VILNIAUS TEATRAS composer Chris Ruebens.QI‑9, St. Catherine’s Church,
LĖLĖ) Vilniaus 30, tel. (+370) 52 62 04 21, from €16.20.
This inspired puppet theatre for children of all ages has
been charming audiences in Vilnius since the company 25.07 19:00 » JAËL
was founded way back in 1958.QI‑10, Arklių 5, tel. (+370) A sweet-voiced Swiss vocalist, who from 1993 to 2013 was
52 62 86 78, www.teatraslele.lt. Box office open 10:00 - the lead singer of the band Lunik and has worked with
16:00. Closed Mon, Sun. J Delerium, now makes her very own dream pop.QI‑9, St.
Catherine’s Church, Vilniaus 30, tel. (+370) 52 62 04 21,
from €14.20, www.kristupofestivalis.lt/en/jael-queen-
of-hearts/.

31.07 19:00 » ESKA & BYRON WALLEN


British-Zimbabwean vocalist Eska sings soul and folk with
her expert backing band.QI‑9, St. Catherine’s Church,
Vilniaus 30, tel. (+370) 52 62 04 21. €23.20 - 49.80.

01.08 19:00 » OKATA


Combining Lithuanian folk songs with electronic music and
beatbox rhythms, this local band is fun to watch.QVilnius
University Botanical Garden, Kairėnų 43, tel. (+370) 52
Tove Lo Photo courtesy of 8 Days a Week on Facebook 19 31 33. €14.20 - 21.20.
20 Vilnius In Your Pocket vilnius.inyourpocket.com
What’s On
21.08 19:00 » BAROCK!
From Baroque to rock, taking in flamenco, jazz, Balkan folk,
plus many other genres and styles along the way. The Baltic
Guitar Quartet, together with double bassist Vytis Nivinskas
and multi-instrumentalist Saulius Petreikis, are inviting you
onto one such intriguing journey.QI‑9, St. Catherine’s
Church, Vilniaus 30, tel. (+370) 52 62 04 21, €21.20 -
31.20, www.kristupofestivalis.lt/en/barock/.
Enthusiastic festival-goers at Galapagai © Arnas Mažylis
21.08 20:00 » RHYE
An R&B project from Canadian singer Mike Milosh, Rhye 04.07 - 03.08 » RUPERT: SUMMER GROUP
play alternative R&B, downtempo, soul and sophisti-pop. EXHIBITION
QVilnius University Botanical Garden, Kairėnų 43, tel. A contemporary art gallery set amid the pines in a bend
(+370) 52 19 31 33, €33.00. in the river, just north of the city centre, is featuring a
fascinating summer exhibition of international artists
28.08 19:00 » BASI: DIFFERENTLY working with materials such as ash and salt as well as oil
Crazy about rock’n’roll, and fans of the Lithuanian language, paints. There’s also a programme of talks, performances
they like to dream, encourage others to think, and appeal and screenings; see Rupert’s website for details. QRupert,
for their rebellious souls and stage charisma – they are Vaidilutės 79, tel. (+370) 68 25 49 30. Free.
Basi (lit. Barefoot).QVilnius University Botanical Garden,
Kairėnų 43, tel. (+370) 52 19 31 33, €13.20 - 20.20, www.
kristupofestivalis.lt/en/basi-differently/. FESTIVALS
07.07 - 08.07 » BLIUZO NAKTYS
A long-running lakeside blues and jazz festival that’s raucous
EXHIBITIONS fun for everyone.Q www.bliuzonaktys.lt/en/. €30 - 35.
01.12 - 19.08 » UNDER ITALIAN SKIES:
LITHUANIAN ARTISTS’ WORKS FROM THE 12.07 - 28.08 » CHRISTOPHER SUMMER
18TH TO THE FIRST HALF OF THE 20TH FESTIVAL
CENTURIES Various styles of music including classical, jazz, singing
Lithuanian and Polish artists used to journey south, poetry and pop are performed during one of the city’s best-
especially to Italy, to paint the landscapes there. This shows loved festivals. Find out more at www.kristupofestivaliai.
the fruits of their labour.QJ‑9, Vilnius Picture Gallery, lt.QI‑9, St. Catherine’s Church, Vilniaus 30, tel. (+370) 52
Didžioji 4, tel. (+370) 52 12 42 58, €1,80, www.ldm.lt/ 62 04 21, www.kristupofestivalis.lt/en/. €10 - 37.50
paroda-po-italijos-saule-xviii-a-xx-a-i-puses-lietuvos-
dailininku-kuryba/?lang=en. Open 11:00 - 18:00, Sun 26.07 - 29.07 » SŪPYNĖS FESTIVAL 2018
12:00 - 17:00. Closed Mon. DJ Stingray, the Empire Line, Silent Servant and Lake
People are among the acts playing at this indie-artsy
01.02 - 30.09 » FREEDOM IS MORE PRECIOUS lakeside setting deep in the forests south of Utena.Qwww.
THAN ALL THE GOLD IN THE WORLD supynesfestival.lt/. €35 - 55.
Vilnius University Library presents an exhibition dedicated
to Lithuania’s centenary, showing books and documents 27.07 - 29.07 » GALAPAGAI
related to the history of LithuaniaQJ‑9; I‑9, Vilnius Dozens of international and Lithuanian performances by
University, Universiteto 7, tel. (+370) 52 19 30 29, Free impressive electronic, rave, rap and other acts take place
admission. 09:00 Closed Sat, Sun. on five stages in this lively festival in the countryside. This
year, the main guest is English dance and soul sensation JP
Cooper, but there’s tons more going on besides him. The
fest has sports competitions too, plus a few ‘extreme’ shows.
Qwww.galapagai.lt. €32 - 40.

CLASSICAL CONCERTS
17.07 20:30 » MARI SAMUELSEN AND NIKO
The exceptional young Norwegian violinist Mari Samuelsen
and the New Ideas Chamber Orchestra (NIKO) take on
pieces by composers such as Philip Glass, Arvo Pärt, Peteris
Vasks and Peter Gregson.QJ‑8, Palace of the Grand Dukes
of Lithuania, Katedros 4, tel. (+370) 52 62 00 07, www.
midsummervilnius.com/en/speaker/mari-samuelsen-ir-
The main stage at Galapagai © Arnas Mažylis niko/. €20 - 40.
22 Vilnius In Your Pocket vilnius.inyourpocket.com
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Liepāja, Latvia
Straddling a narrow strip of land between the sea and a
lake Latvia’s third largest city began as a humble fishing SIGHTSEEING
village, eventually becoming a major trading port under KAROSTA PRISON (KAROSTAS CIETUMS)
the leadership of Jacob (or James) Kettler (1610 - 1681). The Built in 1900, it was used as a military prison by a long
burgeoning city suffered heavily during the Great Northern succession of regimes including the Soviets and Nazis who
War when the population was decimated by an outbreak executed ‘criminals’ outside in the yard. Guides are happy
of the plague in 1710. It only regained its importance as to tell you how a ghost haunts the prison and how doors
a port in the 19th century as a part of the Russian empire. often swing open by themselves. The hauntings were even
Today, Liepāja is known as a progressive city with beautiful investigated in an episode of Ghost Hunters International.
architecture, a beautiful beach and excellent nightlife. Visitors can take a simple tour with a guide or audio guide,
participate in a reality show (in English or German), spend
the night in a cell or do the ultimate and become a prisoner
GETTING THERE & ARRIVING for the night (see website for details). For participatory
Liepāja is located on Latvia’s Baltic Sea coast roughly 100km events you must call ahead and reserve a time.QInvalīdu
north of Klaipėda and nearly 400km northwest of Vilnius. If 4, tel. (+371) 26 36 94 70, www.karostascietums.lv. Open
you’re travelling by car from Vilnius take the A1 all the way 10:00 - 18:00. Admission: €3 - 4.50.
to Klaipėda and then head north along the coast on the
A13 until you cross the border when the road turns into NORTHERN FORTS (ZIEMEĻU FORTI)
the A11, which leads directly to Liepāja. You can also take A long system of concrete fortifications was once part of the
a bus to Klaipėda or Palanga and then switch buses to get Naval Port’s defences, but was intentionally destroyed after
to Liepāja. Although the city is easily walkable, you can a friendship and cooperation agreement was signed with
explore outlying areas by tram. Buy a €0.80 ticket from the Germany in 1908. It’s not known if the tsar later pondered
driver or at newsstands for €0.70 (time stamp the ticket). the irony of blowing up such massive defences on the eve
of WWI, but of course it’s always easy to make jokes with
hindsight. Today, you can cautiously walk through the ruins
ACCOMMODATION and watch buildings, pillboxes and concrete staircases
PROMENADE HOTEL slowly recede into the sea, but beware as a large section
This converted 19th-century warehouse on the harbour collapsed in a landslide in January of 2018.QNorth of the
canal is without a doubt one of the city’s best hotels. All rooms breakwater, west of Atmodas bulvāris.
include cable TV, internet access, phone, private bathrooms,
unique designer interior decoration and some also offer PETER’S MARKET (PĒTERTIRGUS)
spacious balconies with fantastic views of the Liepāja marina Since the second half of the 17th century Kuršu laukums
below. Conference facilities, a restaurant, an art gallery and served as the city’s main market, but in 1910 the Pētertirgus
even yacht berths are also available.QVecā Ostmala 40, tel. pavilion was built next door and has remained Liepāja’s
(+371) 63 48 82 88, www.promenadehotel.lv. 50 rooms. central trading venue to this day. Inside you’ll find stunning
P­H­A­6­U­F­L­K­D­X­W architecture and a hygienic market that has lost some of its
character due to the pressures of the modern era. Outside
you’ll find vegetable stalls as well as vendors selling local
RESTAURANTS crafts and souvenirs.QKuršu 5/7/9, tel. (+371) 63 42 35 17,
PASTNIEKA MĀJA www.petertirgus.lv. Open 08:00 - 18:00, Sun 08:00 - 14:00.
The Postman’s House is located in an ancient renovated
building in the centre of the city. Unfortunately, the interior
is actually quite modern but we’ll forgive them because the ACTIVITIES & LEISURE
courtyard is so charming. Dine on excellent international GANDRS
fair on the ground floor, upstairs or on the extensive This chain of sports shops also rents a wide selection of
summer terrace. Try the traditional Liepājas menciņi bicycles.QBāriņu 14, tel. (+371) 28 00 33 64, www.gandrs.
(smoked cod fish stew).QFr. Brīvzemnieka 53, tel. (+371) lv. Open 10:00 - 20:00, Sat, Sun 10:00 - 18:00. A
29 11 31 86, www.pastniekamaja.lv. Open 11:00 - 23:00. LIEPĀJA OLYMPIC CENTRE POOL & SPA
(€5 - 10). T­A­B­W This incredible spa and pool complex includes a number
of attractions including a large and small swimming pool,
hot tubs, Turkish steam room, aromatic sauna, salt sauna,
ice water pool, children’s playground and massage pools as
well as a refreshment bar.QBrīvības 39, tel. (+371) 63 48
38 88, www.loc.lv. Open 12:00 - 22:00, Sat 10:00 - 22:00,
Sun 10:00 - 21:00. Admission: €12.50/adult. A
TARZĀNS PARK
Climb between trees, rappel from platforms and burn some
adrenalin on a zip line over the lake.QLībiešu 8, tel. (+371)
Beach life in Liepāja Mārtiņš Zaprauskis 27 08 89 33, www.tarzans.lv/liepaja. Open 10:00 - 20:00.
24 Vilnius In Your Pocket vilnius.inyourpocket.com
Restaurants

Enjoy excellent Asian cuisine at Blue Lotus

The spectrum of dining choices continues to improve in LOCAL


Vilnius and there really are some top-class restaurants Experience the best of Lithuanian cuisine at Etno Dvaras
around now, a few of them offering a ridiculously good in the Old Town or, in summer, in the quaint garden at
price-quality ratio, particularly if you’re visiting from Senoji Trobelė. For a more upmarket take on centuries-
Western Europe or North America. The figures in brackets at old local recipes, head to Ertlio Namas. The choppy Baltic
the end of each of our reviews denote the checked price of Sea is not that far away and both Šturmų Švyturys and
an average main course on the menu. The opening hours Žuvinė do a reliably wonderful job bringing fish to Vilnius,
we list tend to be flexible in that these are the times the freshly caught, and preparing it in all kinds of amazing ways.
venue has told us you can expect the chef to be working. For locally sourced ingredients chopped and prepared for
Occasionally the chef departs an hour or so before closing international dishes, try Panama or Bistro 18.
time, leaving the glass-clinking, late-evening atmosphere
to continue, and in these cases we highlight it in the review. CHEAP
If business is slow, restaurants may shut early. There are countless cheap and cosy cafés in Vilnius, and
those grouped at the far end of Trakų Street are as good as
Service varies a great deal, to jarring effect now and then, any. Or head to the Halės indoor farmers’ market and its
so be sure to reward polite, pleasant and efficient service cafés at the southern end of Pylimo for a dose of fresh local
to encourage others – and cut back on the tip if it’s not food. Supermarkets large and small also sell fairly tasty,
deserved. Beware of saying ‘Thank you’ and nodding fairly fresh eats of all kinds.
when paying the bill, as this can be taken to mean ‘Keep
the change’. Keep in mind also that our list of restaurants SPLURGE
and cafés is, due to space restraints, not exhaustive. We list Prices are still competitive compared to, say, Scandinavia,
places that in our opinion deserve our recommendation so nowhere will have you rapidly assuming damage control
or, in rare cases, our recommendation to stay away from. when you get your bill. For a special occasion, visit the
Many more of our objective reviews can be found online at reliable fine-dining establishments of five-star hotels, such
Vilnius.inyourpocket.com. as Telegrafas at the Kempinski by Cathedral Square, or
Stikliai at the Hotel Stikliai. For excellent steaks and high-
In the meantime, here are some tips depending on what end grills, you should definitely consider heading to The
you may be looking for. Town or long-time favourite Steakhouse Hazienda.
26 Vilnius In Your Pocket vilnius.inyourpocket.com
Restaurants
LITHUANIAN SYMBOL KEY
There are essentially two types of Lithuanian restaurant
in Lithuania. The first variety features pigtailed waitresses P Air conditioning A Credit cards accepted
in national dress serving plates of potatoes and beetroot T Child-friendly U Facilities for the disabled
soup in an atmosphere reminiscent of an old barn. The G Non-smoking 6 Pet-friendly
second is less easy to pin down, and is perhaps best
described as a restaurant or café serving predominantly X Smoking place J Old town location
but not exclusively Lithuanian favourites in an atmosphere E Live music S Take away
you won’t find anywhere other than in Lithuania. A much I Fireplace W Wi-Fi
bigger list appears on our website at inyourpocket.com.
B Outside seating V Home delivery
DRAUGAI
There’s definitely a sense of nostalgia at “Friends”, with
its older clientele, often celebrating a special occasion in ETNO DVARAS
groups, and its stunning interior of timber beams, painted One of the better options for traditional Lithuanian dishes
ceiling panels and wooden columns. Choose from two in the Old Town, this is a jolly, warm-hearted, meat-and-
menus. One does Lithuanian dishes like cepelinai, vedarai potatoes place with cosy cavernous rooms downstairs and
(stuffed intestines) and the once-inescapable chicken window-side tables on the ground floor. Feast and drink
Kiev. The other boasts Caucasian goodies like shashlik among antiquated folk utensils and cartoonish wall paintings
meat skewers that have been marinated by the portly and be served by smiling young locals in old-fashioned
Armenian seen grilling them on the open fire. From the costumes. The potato pancakes with bacon and mushroom
rich kharcho soup to the nut paste-filled aubergine rolls, sauce are outstanding and there are vegetarian options too.
it’s all authentic and delicious. Then try a taster-set of local QJ‑9, Pilies 16, tel. (+370) 65 61 36 88, www.fortodvaras.
spirits as you watch a weekend crooner singing Sinatra, lt. Open 11:00 - 24:00. €6. A­T­B­S­J­W
Louis Armstrong and other old favourites in six different
languages.QVilniaus g. 4, tel. (+370) 69 44 41 55, www.
draugai.rest. Open 11:00-23:00, Fri, Sat 11:00-24:00, Sun instagram.com/inyourpocket
11:00-22:00. €€. A­E­J­K

facebook.com/VilniusInYourPocket Summer 2018 27


Restaurants
SENOJI TROBELĖ
youtube.com/inyourpocket A cottage with a sheltered leafy garden, this wonderful
restaurant about 10 minutes’ walk from the Old Town
serves some of the finest traditional Lithuanian food in
MYKOLO 4 the country. Recently extended, there are now additional
On a quiet side-street off bustling Pilies, this exceptional sumptuously designed rooms with ceilings decorated
bistro showcases Lithuanian cuisine with seasonal with coats of arms and paintings, suitable for groups, as
ingredients and a menu inspired by bourgeois 19th- well as the better-known and charmingly cluttered rustic
century recipes. If you’re lucky you’ll catch the chef with interior.  Cepelinai are always delicious here, but more
a special offer, such as braised duck in a chocolate-wine elegant dishes are on offer too, like wine-braised venison
sauce or guinea fowl fillet with strawberries. If not, the stew with lingonberry sauce. Generous boards of cured
aubergine stuffed with curd cheese or the venison will meats and cheeses adorned with local leaves, sprouting
do just fine.QJ‑9, Šv. Mykolo 4, tel. (+370) 68 82 22 10, seeds and honey are tastily authentic. Wash it all down with
www.mykolo4.lt. Open 12:00 - 23:30, Sun 12:00 - 22:00. beer from small breweries or local bitter brandy served in
€11 €€. A­P­T­B­S­J­W cups made of ice.QG‑11, Naugarduko 36, tel. (+370) 60
99 90 02, www.senojitrobele.lt. Open 11:00 - 23:00, Sat,
PILIES KATPĖDĖLĖ Sun 12:00 - 23:00. €11. A­T­U­B­S­L­W
Now on Pilies Street, this popular chain serves classic
Lithuanian dishes in a folksy setting as well as more
international food and that old favourite, the lunchtime AMERICAN
special offer. An excellent value introduction to the UNCLE SAM’S
wonders of local heart-blocking nosh, Pilies Katpėdėlė We had an outstanding burger with chunky cuts of steak
rustles up salads with thick sauces, pancakes, pizzas, snacks in the bun, caramelised onions and pickles on a board with
from herring to potato wedges, creamy soups, mains that the most irresistibly crunchy onion rings ever at this Old
include tasty sausages and fried salmon and some truly Town hotspot. Finally, Vilnius has a genuine American bar to
yummy desserts. Wash it all down with a beer or three. knock the others out of the ballpark, with enough nachos,
QK‑2, Pilies 8, tel. (+370) 61 12 05 76, www.katpedele. shakes, neon signs, zany seats and old hits playing to keep
lt/lt/restoranas/35-pilies-katpedele. Open 10:00 - 24:00, an entire baseball stadium happy. Well, almost.QIslandijos
Thu, Fri, Sat 10.00-01.00, Sun 10:00 - 23:00, Also at 1, tel. (+370) 61 49 99 44. Open 16:00 - 02:00, Fri 16:00 -
Lukšio 34, Viršuliškių 40 (MADA). €7. A­P­T­B­E­S 04:00, Sat 12:00 - 04:00, Sun 12:00 - 02:00. A­J

28 Vilnius In Your Pocket vilnius.inyourpocket.com


Restaurants
ASIAN BIG FAT BURGERS
BLUE LOTUS DRAMA BURGER
Enjoy authentic, top-quality Indian and Thai cuisine in You know what? The name alone was reason enough to
the Old Town. In a subtly exotic interior of bright ochre come. Anyhoo, this is gourmet burger done properly,
colours and eastern music, the heady aromas and tastes with cuts of meat (not just beef ), fine fries, great bread,
of the dishes include lime leaves, lemongrass, galangal superb dressings and imaginative side dishes. There’s
and other herbs and spices selected in Asia. Tender duck fresh lemonade too. The venue is industrial chic and has
breast comes in a rich tamarind sauce and the tom kha become massively popular, particularly with families, but
soup carries a luscious tumble of flavours. Indian dishes the staff seem able to cope. More than recommended.
like butter chicken and lamb rogan josh are special too, as QH‑8, Gedimino 31, tel. (+370) 61 84 22 88. Open
are the vegetarian and vegan options. Choose your desired 11:00 - 22:00, Wed, Thu 11:00 - 23:00, Fri 11:00 - 24:00,
level of spiciness. Even drop in for a late breakfast.QI‑8, Sat 10:00 - 24:00, Sun 10:00 - 22:00, Also at Saltoniškių
Totorių 16, tel. (+370) 62 62 71 96, www.bluelotus.lt. 9 (Panorama), Verkių 29 (Ogmios miestas, Šeimos aikštė
Open 11:30 - 23:00, Fri 11:30 - 00:00, Sat 12:00 - 00:00, 10). €9. A­P­T­B­S­J­6­W
Sun 12:00 - 22:00. €8 €€. A­P­T­S­J­W
KEULĖ RŪKĖ
LEAYE Journeying to this ultra-casual burger joint at the far
Finally Asian, specifically Chinese, cuisine is taken up a few end of the dark side of town can seem like something
notches, away from the starch and dough-covered fast out of The Hobbit. But this little abode, in the shadow
food and into the more youthful province of hipdom. It’s of shunting diesel trains, is the only freshly painted
still fast, but the noodles, spices and sauces are authentic, (black) house in the area, and the non-attitude youths
shipped in regularly so that the fabulous celery stir-fry with enjoying the amazing pimped-up juicy burgers are totally
cashews, the spicy Sichuan beef and the flavoursome pho- absorbed by the food. Make your customised order to
like Crossing the Bridge noodle soup all taste like nothing the right, budge up some space on a bench, and munch.
else in Vilnius. Ease down with matcha green-tea ice Then journey back to civilisation safely.QJ‑12, Pylimo 66,
cream.QDominikonų 16, tel. (+370) 68 85 50 25. Open tel. (+370) 62 32 98 39, www.keuleruke.lt. Open 11:30
11:00 - 22:00, Fri 11:00 - 23:00, Sat 12:00 - 23:00, Sun - 20:00, Sat, Sun 12:00 - 20:00, Also at Titano 78, Verkių
12:00 - 22:00. €5. A­P­S­W 29. A­T­B­S­6­W

30 Vilnius In Your Pocket vilnius.inyourpocket.com


Restaurants

DUBLIS
CHINESE Dining as experience. Opt for the ‘restaurant’ and you’ll
Vilnius offers a superb range of Chinese options, from low get a set menu of five imaginative courses, little surprises
budget canteen affairs to the full-blown posh experience. between courses and carefully matched wines that will
keep you enraptured for three hours or so. Pricey by local
ZHANGAS standards, with the wine typically costing more than the
Inexpensive, delicious and much loved by local office food, it’s still great value for the quality ingredients and
workers and residents, Zhangas has quietly and steadily artistic combinations. Choose the ‘brasserie’ and you’ll get
assumed a reputation as one of the best Chinese eateries more of a choice, for lunch, dinner or for coffee and cake.
in the city. Found a few paces north of the Green Bridge, Service is top notch, the ambiance non-elitist. Though
it’s not classy dining by any stretch of the imagination, but similar competitors have sprung up to keep it on its toes,
it’s homely, unceremonious and Chinese-owned and run, Dublis is still one of the best.QTrakų 14, tel. (+370) 67 44
making it reasonably authentic.QKalvarijų 7, tel. (+370) 19 22, www.dublis.eu/. Open 07:30 - 23:00, Sat 12:00 -
52 75 60 97. Open 11:00 - 22:00, Sat, Sun 12:00 - 22:00. €. 23:00, Closed Sun. €19. A­P­T­U­B­E­J­6­W

DŽIAUGSMAS
FAST FOOD It could be that the minimalist décor at this pricey, tricky-
MEATBALLS to-find hideaway (via a shady doorway a few steps down
Celebrating the humble meatball, with horror-movie Liejyklos) is kept so deliberately dark that the colours
mincers on display on the walls, this highly casual eatery in the gastronomic experiences when they arrive
is testament to the eternal popularity of Eastern European take your breath away. In any case, ecological, mostly
countryside cooking. The meatballs are essentially identical, local ingredients are conjured in the kitchen into vivid
mostly with beef and with tomato sauce and mash or colours, though in some cases the dishes are as minimal
ciabatta, but on Thursdays curious meatball experiments as the furnishings. There isn’t a great deal to look at
take place with herbs and spices added.QEtmonų 3, tel. besides the experimental jars of chamomile vinegar and
(+370) 60 26 21 78. Open 17:00 - 23:00, Fri, Sat 17:00 - blackcurrant leaves, so bring chatty company. Reserve
03:00, Closed Mon, Sun. €2-5. A­J­W ahead, or sit on a stool by the window and wait for a
table.QVilniaus 28, tel. (+370) 63 11 11 53, www.
dziaugsmas.com. Open 17:00 - 23:00, Closed Sun.
FINE DINING A­P­J­W­K
AMANDUS
Amandus is the new hidden jewel of the Vilnius dining ERTLIO NAMAS
scene, but not for long. Young, talented chef Deivydas Raising the bar once again for the city’s dining scene,
Praspaliauskas earned a well-deserved reputation at Dublis, culinary-wise this elegant little space is a step back in
but this is his first solo venture and the food is fabulous. time as dishes are based on Lithuanian recipes from
His kitchen is his laboratory. Lingonberries are buried under centuries past. But we’re not talking pancakes here. We
ibérico cheek with a rich sauce and caramelised onions, mean crawfish soup, breast of goose, lamb loin and quince
duck breast comes with a pear and pepper sauce, parsnips cooked in honey, each noting the century the recipe is
with beetroot and goat cheese, fried pumpkin with apples, taken from, while the exceedingly helpful staff recommend
courgette with salty Pecorino cheese, etc. And the desserts a suitable wine. As much fun for small groups as it is for
are just indescribable. Found next to the Artagonist Hotel couples, Ertlio is a Vilnius highlight. Reserve ahead.QJ‑9,
on Pilies, there’s seating at street level but also a whole Šv. Jono 7, tel. (+370) 63 73 33 00, www.ertlionamas.lt.
cavernous world downstairs for events and banquets. Open 17:00 - 22:00, Fri 17:00 - 23:00, Sat 13:00 - 23:00,
QPilies 34, tel. (8-675) 41191, www.amandus.lt. Open Sun 13:00 - 22:00, Bar Open 12:00 - 22:00, Fri, Sat 12:00 -
12:00 - 23:00. €€€. A­J­W­K­i 23:00. €9. A­T­W
facebook.com/VilniusInYourPocket Summer 2018 31
Restaurants
RENAISSANCE
Those who can afford the regularly changing degustation FISH
menus or an à la carte selection that ranges from tartare ŽUVINĖ (THE FISH RESTAURANT)
of scallops to umami oysters to the delightful cod in There are not enough fish restaurants in the Baltics, but
morel mushroom sauce, over to the venison, steak and Vilnius is blessed because it boasts the best. With an
chargrilled octopus, will be rewarded with superb food. unbeatable location inside the Old Town’s historic Town
Match it with a glass of crisp Chablis. A quiet location Hall, a classy, sophisticated ambiance makes Žuvinė perfect
means this elegant restaurant is rarely crowded, so the for a romantic date. But it’s not pretentious in any way, with
Tuscan chef will be able to put all his effort into your attentive and knowledgeable staff, and is great for small
unforgettable meal.QSubačiaus 3, tel. (+370) 61 88 15 groups of fish-fervent friends and family. Besides the tasty
13. Open 16:00 - 22:00, Sat 12:00 - 22:00, Closed Mon, seafood, a raw-fish bar and a fabulously rich Bouillabaisse,
Sun. A­P­6­W­Y there’s often also beef tartare and pepper-brandy steak for
those who just can’t let go of the meat, plus an excellent
ŠVENTARAGIO SODAS wine list.QI‑10, Didžioji 31, tel. (+370) 68 21 91 72, www.
With a sweeping view of the cathedral, Cathedral Square zuvine.lt. Open 11:00 - 00:00, Sun 11:00 - 22:00, Open
and bell tower through huge windows on two sides of this 10:00 - 24:00. From October 1 Open 11:00 - 24:00, Sun
sophisticated restaurant, and a luscious vertical garden on 11:00 - 22:00. €18. A­P­T­B­S­J­W
another, there’s visual background aplenty for a romantic
dinner or business lunch in one of the city’s prime
locations. In summer especially, on the tables outside, FRENCH
there are few places better to sit than this. Šventaragis is LE BONJOUR
a Lithuanian mythological leader akin to England’s King Feast on delicious French onion soup, steak, camembert
Arthur, and here at his sodas (garden) the petite selection with penny bun mushrooms and – the pièce de résistance
of classic dishes is excellent, though you may have to wait – the crème brûlée. Prices are incredibly low for the quality,
a bit for them to arrive, and the superior snacks and salads while the Provençal décor is elegant but not over-the-top.
are fab with a round of delicious duck-fat new potatoes. Another nice touch is that the menu titles remain stubbornly
QL. Stuokos-Gucevičiaus g. 1, tel. (+370) 52 08 08 05. in French.QGedimino 46, tel. (+370) 68 8014 83, www.
Open 08:00 - 11:00, Thu, Fri, Sat 08:00 - 12:00. €€€. lebonjour.lt. Open 11:00 - 22:00, Thu, Fri 11:00 - 24:00, Sat
A­T­B­J­K­i 12:00 - 24:00, Sun 00:00 - 20:00. A­P­U­J­W­K

32 Vilnius In Your Pocket vilnius.inyourpocket.com


Restaurants
FUN
RENÉ
The bowler hats are a sign that this restaurant-with-a-twist
is inspired by Belgian surrealist artist Magritte. Amiable
waitresses pour strong Belgian beer, like Kwak in its genuine
glass and stand, or Halve Maan’s excellent brews, in a fun and
arty interior with plentiful nonsense touches to the décor
and summertime seating on the narrow lane outside. The
food is fab, from the rump steak to the rabbit stew to the
bouillabaisse, but it’s the mussels shipped in twice a week
that are Rene’s speciality, with a choice of 13 sauces to
magically honour the house number.QI‑10, M. Antokolskio
13, tel. (+370) 52 12 68 58, www.restoranasrene.lt. Open
11:00 - 23:00, Fri 11:00 - 24:00, Sat 12:00 - 24:00, Sun 12:00
- 21:00. €12. A­P­T­U­B­S­6

GASTROBARS
B15
The waitress told us that B15 is aiming for French
atmosphere, design and food. Maybe it’s a work in progress
but with pizza, fish and chips and organic Sicilian sauvignon
among the highlights, it feels no more French than the
Russian Drama Theatre next door. It was a sunny day so
we sat out front and shared a caper-spotted tomato pizza
and a bottle of red, and pretty soon it was the buzz of this
Vilnius street corner that helped to make the experience
memorable.QBasanavičiaus 15, tel. (+370) 61 62 11 15,
www.b15.lt/. Open 11:00 - 22:00, Fri, Sat 11:00 - 00:00,
Sun 11:00 - 20:00. €€€. A­T­B­S

GERMAN
BUNTE GANS
Bunte Gans churns out excellent German cuisine and
other dishes in this Old Town favourite. The imaginative,
great-value food on offer includes schnitzels, bratwurst,
bangers and mash, lamb, boar, beef steaks, fresh fish and
the house special dish of goose with fried potatoes and a
host of vegetables. There’s live music at weekends and an
extensive range of drinks straight from Germany’s many
states and regions.QJ‑11, Aušros Vartų 11, tel. (+370)
52 12 83 12, www.buntegans.lt. Open 11:00 - 23:00, Fri
11:00 - 02:00, Sat 12:00 - 24:00, Sun 12:00 - 20:00. €15.
A­T­B­E­S­J­W

GRILL
HAZIENDA STEAKHOUSE
Enter the secluded courtyard of the Mabre Residence hotel
and turn sharp left to find this gem of a restaurant, ideal
as a centrally located hideaway for a secret date or for a
sheltered business meeting. Practically all of the grills are
seductive, from the prime Argentine steak and the venison
tenderloin to the bass and the bream. The knowledgeable
staff will be able to tell you about the origins of all of the
raw materials. QJ‑9, Maironio 13, tel. (+370) 52 12 13 89,
www.mabre.lt. Open 11:30 - 23:00. A­P­T­E­J­W
facebook.com/VilniusInYourPocket Summer 2018 33
Restaurants
PANAMA FOOD GARDEN
Take a step away from the bustle of the Old Town and head INTERNATIONAL
across the river to this excellent restaurant set inside an old BISTRO 18
wooden house in the leafy residential district of Žvėrynas. The A combined restaurant and wine shop, Bistro 18
pedigree of the owners is good having already created the specialises primarily in dishes from the world of
popular Meat Lovers Pub, but in contrast this is a little more European seasonal cuisine including French onion soup,
upmarket with a smart but relaxed atmosphere. There are two risotto, pasta and scores of meat-heavy dishes such as
main reasons to jump in a taxi and pop over here, the food beef and rabbit. There are tasty desserts too and the
and the garden. You’ll find the changing menu chalked up aforementioned wine shop is well-stocked. If you’re into
on a board from which we chose duck in onion gravy and a classy dining on one of old Vilnius’ most scenic lanes this
beautifully prepared tuna, both of which were delicious. The might just be the place for you. Note that the kitchen
place to enjoy it is in the peaceful garden, one of the loveliest closes two hours before the restaurant does.QI‑9,
dining spaces in the city. Note that the kitchen closes an hour Stiklių 18, tel. (+370) 67 77 20 91, www.bistro18.lt.
earlier than the restaurant, except on Mon, Tue, Wed when it Open 11:30 - 22:00, Fri 11:30 - 23:00, Sat 13:00 - 23:00,
closes two hours earlier.QE‑7, Vykinto 17a, tel. (+370) 65 08 Sun 13:00 - 21:00. €8-16. A­P­T­B­S­J­6
28 29. Open 11:30 - 22:00, Sun 11:30 - 21:00, Kitchen Open
11:30 - 22:00, Sun 11:30 - 21:00. Bar Open 11:30 - 24:00, Sun BIZARRE
11:30 - 22:00. €15. A­T­E­S­J­6­W In an extraordinarily, darkly, almost industrially intricate
interior with odd East Asian touches, housed even more
PERI PERI weirdly in a former hospital in the old Jewish quarter,
If you like chicken, look no further. Because that’s the only faultlessly presented Asian, Peruvian and Mediterranean
thing on the menu at this fast-food style eatery tucked dishes and creamy desserts are served. Sharply dressed
down an Old Town side street. Devour your poultry fried locals enjoy late-evening weekend parties on the second
or grilled, with a choice of glaze and homemade sauce floor with live music and fine wine. Sumptuous if pricey
– try the maple-bacon glaze and the peri-chilli sauce weekend brunches and weekday menus keep the Vilnius
with a side of chorizo black beans. And start with the elite rolling in at all hours.QPylimo 38, tel. (+370) 61 26
flavour-packed chicken stock. Free range and healthy it’s 44 44, www.bizarre.lt/. Open 12:00 - 00:00, Fri 12:00 -
not. Tasty it most certainly is.QEtmonų 2, tel. (+370) 61 02:00, Sat 11:00 - 02:00, Sun 11:00 - 16:00; lunch Mon
01 33 57. Open 11:00 - 22:00, Mon 11:00 - 20:00, Fri - Fri 12:00 - 16:00; brunch Sat 11:00 - 17:00, Sun 11:00
11:00 - 00:00, Sat 12:00 - 00:00, Sun 12:00 - 20:00. €€. - 16:00. €22. A­P­T­U­B­W
T­B­S­V
CARRÉ
THE TOWN CONTEMPORARY GRILL & BAR It may not be inspired by John le Carré, but its interior
One of the best options for meaty dining in Vilnius, The is as dark and twisting as a spy thriller. Yet the menu of
Town exudes a New York ambiance in its chunkily modern this elegant ‘bar & lounge’ inside the flashy city-centre
décor, city-light colours, comfy seating, congenial service GO9 shopping mall is no mystery. The chicken Caesar
and upbeat jazzy notes from the speakers. It’s a welcoming salad is popular, but we recommend the steak, tuna
spot at all times, from its sumptuous breakfast to late-night and mussels. Flustered at busy weekday lunchtimes, by
drinks. Try the generous slab of beef tartare, the excellent evening it’s a more inviting cocktail-driven prospect,
gourmet burger or any of the succulent steaks; UDSA- especially if the outdoor terrace is open. But the service
grade rib eye and entrecote may be on the board. Choose continues to be touch-and-go.QI‑8, Gedimino 9, tel.
from optional sides and sauces.QH‑8, Gedimino 26, tel. (+370) 68 79 01 59, www.carre.lt. Open 10:00 - 22:00,
(+370) 52 03 12 28, www.town.lt. Open 08:00 - 10:30, Fri 10:00 - 01:00, Sat 11:00 - 01:00, Sun 11:00 - 21:00.
11:30 - 22:00, Fri open 08:00 - 10:30, 11:30 - 23:00, Sat €10. A­P­T­U­B­S­J­W
open 09:30 - 13:30, 14:00 - 23:00, Sun open 09:30 -
13:30, 14:00 - 18:00. €16. A­P­T­S­J­W PAUPIO12
This is the smartest Paupio Street has ever been. For
ZOE’S BAR & GRILL centuries, the fag end of Užupis was a lair for the washed-
The great thing about Zoe’s, besides its location by the up dregs of society but today we have chic hangouts
cathedral, its fun atmosphere with outdoor seating in like Paupio12. An old house stripped to the rafters and
summer, its classic yet eclectic menu from snacks to a reworked with faultless contemporary design, it’s almost
la carte (we especially love the grills and burgers) and overly self-conscious. Our tattooed uniformed waitress
its Nordic reliability, is the fact that it opens early for brought flourless homemade bread and herby oil while we
breakfast at 8am and keeps making the dishes in its waited, quite a while, for super-creamy cauliflower soup
open kitchen all the way round the clock until 3am when and pizza. Which is all we could afford. Other dishes need
it rustles up night snacks. It also has an aquarium with add-on side dishes, and with wine too the bill can be a
lobster, allowing you to select your victim.QOdminų 3, small fortune.QPaupio 12, tel. (+370) 67 60 99 12. Open
tel. (+370) 52 12 33 31, www.zoesbargrill.com. Open 11:30 - 22:00, Fri, Sat 11:30 - 23:00, Sun 11:30 - 21:00,
08:00 - 03:00. A­P­J­W­K Closed Mon. €16. A­P­T­U­B­6­W
34 Vilnius In Your Pocket vilnius.inyourpocket.com
Restaurants
KOSHER
The best Vilnius BEIGELIŲ KRAUTUVĖLĖ
An array of authentic and tasty Jewish and Israeli food is
served in a building that’s also the headquarters of the
has to offer Lithuanian Jewish community. Fresh, heavy bagels are
filled with creamy stuffing like egg salad, hummus, cream

in one great app cheese and salmon, but you might also find poached-egg
shakshouka, latkes potato pancakes, chatzilim aubergine
salad – and so much more you’ll want to keep coming back.
Shuts early on Fridays, closed for Sabbath on Saturdays.
QPylimo g. 4, www.lzb.lt/en/. Open 09:00 - 18:00, Fri
09:00 - 14:00, Sun 09:00 - 17:00. Closed Sat. A

LEBANESE
LEYLA
A tiny slice of the Middle East can be found in the Old Town,
at the friendly box-shaped restaurant Leyla. When we heard
about its meze plate we wanted to experience it, but when
we dropped in they’d run out of some key ingredients. They
immediately offered to replace them with multiple types
of spring rolls and even reduced the price, and it turned
out to be a delicious lunch, more than enough for two,
the highlights being the first-rate hummus and falafel. A
colourful interior of Lebanese carpets and patterns was let
down a bit by the decidedly non-Lebanese music, but we’ll
be back.QLiejyklos gatvė 1, tel. (8-620) 99901, www.
www.leyla.lt. Open 12:00 - 22:00, Thu 12:00 - 23:00, Fri,
Sat 12:00 - 07:00, Sun 12:00 - 21:00. €€€. A­T­S­V

LOCAL SEASONAL FOOD


D’ECO
This exceptional restaurant is run by a family from New York
with local connections who endeavour to use only ecological
ingredients in a compact but painstakingly created menu of
dishes. The farm-to-table ethic means personal contact with

City Essentials farmers for local organic produce, plus eco supplies from
abroad when out of season. That ramps up the price quite a
bit, but the beef consommé, filet mignon and slow-cooked
duck are all truly fabulous.QDominikonų g.15, tel. (8-650)
54458, www.restoranasvilniuje.lt. Open 12:00 - 24:00.
Only our favourite places A­T­S­J­K
Works offline, incl. maps
Free download MEXICAN
SOFA DE PANCHO
Incl. dozens of other cities Sofa de Pancho may not have any Mexicans working in
the open kitchen but those who do are enthusiastic and
rather talented. One of the best things about the place is
www.iyp.me/app that everything’s been thrown together in a jumble-sale
fashion that adds a touch of exuberance to a city with too
many sterile restaurants. Try the breakfast tortillas if you’re
feeling brave, and don’t do what we did and turn up on
a Tuesday evening assuming there’d be a table. Closed in
E S S E N TI A L
C I TY G U I D E S summer.QI‑11, Visų Šventųjų 5, tel. (+370) 67 38 90 02.
Open 16:00 - 22:00, Sat 13:00 - 22:00. Closed Mon, Sun.
€15. A­P­T­S­J­6
36 Vilnius In Your Pocket vilnius.inyourpocket.com
Restaurants

MOROCCAN GATVĖS KEPĖJAI


MAGHRIB It’s the simple things in life, generously presented, that
An oasis of Saharan exoticism can be found a few steps gives this place its buzz. Done up like an Italian kitchen,
up the hill from the Angel of Užupis. Images of Morocco Gatvės Kepėjai (‘street bakers’) is a delicatessen-café
are everywhere, even in the newspaper clippings on the that does super antipasti such as spreads of salami and
ceilings, and Berber chants drift from the speakers like a prosciutto or duck liver pate, as well as cheesy pizzas and
desert breeze as the waiter pours mint tea into your glass. parmesan-rich pastas. The baked goods are perfect, as even
About half the menu is vegetarian. Begin with Moroccan the flour comes from Italy. Ideal for chatting with a loved
crisp spinach-and-goat-cheese briwat pastries and move one in an easy atmosphere.QI‑9, Savičiaus 6, tel. (+370)
on to crusty ribs, lamb or fish tajine or stuffed eggplant. 62 35 62 37. Open 11:00 - 22:00, Sat 12:00 - 22:00, Sun
Fabulous.QK‑9, Užupio 22, tel. (+370) 61 49 82 83. Open 12:00 - 20:00. Closed Mon. A­P­S­J­6­W
16:30 - 22:00, Sat 12:00 - 23:00, Sun 12:00 - 21:00. Closed
Mon, Fri. €13. A­P­T­S­J­6­W
INDIAN
PIZZA! SUE’S INDIAN RAJA
CASA LA FAMILIA One of the best restaurants in the Baltics, Sue’s constantly
This is the first pizzeria in Lithuania offering gourmet impresses with a fabulous range of dishes made with
vegetarian pizzas with incredible flavours and nothing hand-picked and hand-mixed spices by a team of top
but the finest ingredients. Located in the Old Town, it Indian chefs overseen by the uniquely charming Wing
offers the best possible choice of vegetarian and vegan Commander Rajinder Chaudhary. We drop in on a regular
pizzas, fresh juice cocktails and homemade desserts, basis, most recently indulging in a rich tilapia tikka,
not to mention a cosy environment. The pizzas at Casa some powerful chicken jalfrezi and a creamy vegetable
La Familia are made from top-quality flour, homemade makhani straight from the Punjab. The location by the
sheep’s and goats’ cheese, pine nuts, roasted beetroot, cathedral is unbeatable and the experience magical.
truffles and, the main ingredient, lots of love.QRūdninkų QI‑8, Odminių 3, tel. (+370) 52 66 18 88/(+370) 52 66
18, tel. (+370) 67 59 59 39, www.casalafamilia.lt. Open 18 87, www.suesindianraja.lt. Open 12:00 - 23:00. €12
12:00 - 22:00, Mon, Sun 12:00 - 21:00, Fri, Sat 12:00 - €€€. A­P­T­B­S­V­J­W
23:00. €6.5. A­T­J­W
facebook.com/VilniusInYourPocket Summer 2018 37
Restaurants
UŽUPIO PICERIJA
instagram.com/inyourpocket In the boho but slowly gentrifying district of Užupis, a
few steps from both the angel statue and the nailed-
to-the-wall constitution, this popular pizzeria is warm
JURGIS IR DRAKONAS and welcoming with big windows of the gently peeling
Jurgis is the local name for George, and the dragon is the surrounding buildings. Chefs busy themselves by the oven
shapely pizza oven. A popular spot, like its previous out- in a tiny open kitchen. Tables outside in warmer weather
of-town incarnation, expect it to be busy at any time of have an extra buzz. The pizzas are certainly decent enough
day, and as they don’t take reservations you may need to and the lasagne, chicken penne and other crowd-pleasers
wait. We say the wait is worth it as just about everything, will do just fine. Service is generally fast and with a smile if
including the flour, is brought from Italy and the pizzas not a wink.QK‑9, Paupio 3, tel. (+370) 52 15 36 66. Open
are thin and crisp right from the dragon’s mouth. Quite 08:00 - 24:00, Mon 10:00 - 24:00, Sat, Sun 09:00 - 24:00.
possibly, they’re the finest pizzas in town.QH‑9, Pylimo €8. A­P­B­S­J­W
22d, tel. (+370) 60 07 79 77, www.jurgisirdrakonas.lt.
Open 11:00 - 22:00, Fri 11:00 - 23:00, Sat 12:00 - 23:00,
Sun 12:00 - 22:00, Also at Verkių 29 (Ogmios miestas), RUSSIAN
Ozo 25 (Akropolis). €6. A­P­T­S­J­W ČAGINO
Named after the 19th-century architect of this building and
MAURIZIO’S the ones across the street, this hit-and-miss Russian affair,
Another month, another new pizza place. You roll the depending on the quantity of vodka  you’ve drunk, offers
dough, they’ll splash the cash. And being on high-rent such classics as chicken with smoked plums and blini in
Didžioji Street, it’s going to be a lot of cash. Fortunately, a splendid cellar. Though it may not be the best Russian
the Portobello with gorgonzola and mushrooms and restaurant in the world, it’s practically the only one to
the ‘Nduja with spicy sausage are among the standouts speak of in Vilnius these days, and weekend evenings can
here, on a lovely thin and crispy base. But the cheese-less be exceptionally good fun with live ‘romance’ music, lots
Pugliese with a few salty anchovies and capers is a bit of shots and large groups of middle-aged diners getting
sparse. They tend to come with pizza cutters – so mind beautifully sloshed.QH‑9, J. Basanavičiaus 11, tel. (+370)
your fingers.QDidzioji g. 19 A, tel. (8-5) 232 4237. Open 52 61 55 55, www.cagin.lt. Open 12:00 - 22:00, Sat, Sun
12:00 - 22:00, Closed Mon. €. A­T­B­S­V­J­K 12:00 - 24:00. €9. A­P­E­S­J

TIPS FOR TIPPING SANDWICHES


SLUOKSNIAI
Lithuanian tipping etiquette can seem a bit confusing. Although the tomatoey egg shakshouka is tasty at this
While in other countries it’s perfectly normal and even eatery concealed behind a popular café up a side street
courteous to say ‘thanks’ (or the Lithuanian ačiū) and off Pylimo, it’s the sandwiches, cookies and cakes that
give a friendly nod when the waitstaff come to collect distinguish Sluoksniai (Layers). Choose your baguette or
the bill, you may be startled to learn that in these parts bread made in-house and pick from the counter of goodies
it’s an indication that you don’t want any change back. to fill it. Follow with vanilla or chocolate éclair, pistaccio
This cultural slip-up can get a bit embarrassing if you’re ice cream or a slice of the extraordinary vegan orange
later forced to track down your server and ask for your and chocolate cake. To drink, opt for coffee, birch juice or
change. This practice is slowly changing in Vilnius, but champagne-fuelled mimosa cocktails.QPylimo 19, tel.
to avoid these situations we suggest that you only say (+370) 65 32 11 80. Open 09:00 - 20:00, Sat 10:00 - 20:00,
‘thank you’ when the service of your waiter/waitress is Sun 10:00 - 17:00. €€. A­T­J­i
no longer needed, when you’re getting up to leave, or if
you are happy for them to keep all of the change. When
that’s not the case, try to avoid eye contact when they’re
SPANISH & TAPAS
taking the payment. The word you need learn is prašau EL MERCADO
(pronounced pra-show), meaning ‘please’ or ‘here you are’. Several kinds of tapas start to roll out of the kitchen at 6pm.
The average waiter or waitress in Lithuania still makes We had one of each together with refills of the house red
a paltry hourly sum, and a customary tip is up to 10% of and soon we were bouncing to the bossa nova dancing
the meal’s total. So we strongly encourage you to reward out of the speakers. Modestly sized but rich in varied tastes,
good service, when you feel it’s deserved. Finally, it’s the tapas aren’t cheap, but fill up with one of the delicious
not common practice to add the tip to your credit card paellas-for-two or Josper-fired chargrilled octopus. The
payment, in part because the company is highly unlikely area at the top of the tile-decorated stairs is over-lit but
to pass the tip on to the waitstaff. For that reason, try to suitable for families, with a kids’ room at the back, popular
have some change handy so you can still leave a cash tip, during El Mercado’s weekend brunches.QDidžioji 3, tel.
or ask your server for change if you need to. (+370) 64 95 55 22. Open 11:00 - 23:00, Fri, Sat 11:00 -
01:00. A­P­T­J­W­K
38 Vilnius In Your Pocket vilnius.inyourpocket.com
Restaurants
All the latest news OUT OF TOWN
facebook.com/VilniusInYourPocket PUŠYNĖLIS
Every year, as soon as it’s warm enough to sit outside,
we head to this countryside inn. Sweeping views
STEAK above the endless canopy of trees of the River Neris
MEAT LOVERS PUB Regional Park are the reason why. On warmer days, kids
You’ll be lucky to find a table at this popular, cosy love running about the rickety adventure playground
rendezvous for passionate carnivores. The meat dishes with its swings and hideouts, while adults sit at bulky
are cooked to perfection and our T-bone steak was one wooden tables and admire the view, local beer in hand.
of the finest we’ve ever eaten. The ribs are finger-licking, The food is generally slap-up tasty, ranging from fried
the soups and snacks satisfying, the burgers and grilled garlic bread to kebabs to beef topped with pineapple
sausages among the best in town. Take away your order if and cheese. Take the road west towards Kernavė, turn
there’s no spare table. In keeping with the theme, fish and left towards Vievis and it’s a kilometre or so up on the
veggie options are next to non-existent.QI‑9, Šv. Ignoto left.QVerkšionių kaimas, Dūkštų sen., tel. (+370) 69
14, tel. (+370) 65 25 12 33, www.meatloverspub.lt. Open 91 41 03.
11:30 - 00:00, Sat 12:00 - 00:00, Sun 12:00 - 20:00. €8.
A­P­T­S­J­6­W
ROSEHIP VEGAN BISTRO
An easy-going, rose-tinged chillout zone opposite Kalnų
SUSHI Park, for wanderers of all backgrounds and persuasions,
SUSHI STOP RoseHip serves up delicious vegan and superfood fare
The best and most centrally located sushi bar in Vilnius can matching the contrasting tastes of tempeh and  tofu,
be found a few steps from the cathedral. Fresh scallops, quinoa and kale. The pulled jackfruit burger with cashew-
salmon and tuna marinated in a secret recipe make the garlic sauce is exquisite, while the segmented array of soft
sashimi the real standout here, but the shitake, chicken sweet potato, courgette, kale, almond pesto and hummus
or vegetable spring rolls and the hot, melt-in-the-mouth turned pink with beetroot juice is Buddha in a bowl.QB.
panko sushi are also delectable.QGedimino 2a, tel. Radvilaitės 7, tel. (+370) 69 48 81 63. Open 11:30 - 22:00,
(+370) 68 62 99 77, www.sushistop.lt/. Open 11:00 - Fri 11:00 - 23:00, Sat 10:00 - 23:00, Sun 10:00 - 22:00. €€.
22:00, Thu 11:00 - 22:30, Fri, Sat 11:00 - 23.00, Also at A­S­J­i
Kęstučio 24a. A­J
VEGAFE
One of Vilnius’ emerging range of vegetarian
THAI restaurants, and one of the best. Cosy and simple yet
VATHAITAU stylish, it has an impressive menu of dishes made from
This tiny Thai eatery in a leafy courtyard in the Naujamiestis fresh ingredients, nodding in the general direction of
district does extraordinary things with simple ingredients Asia. The freshly squeezed fruit juices are especially
and doesn’t charge an arm and a leg for it. Besides aromatic refreshing and the food comes in all shapes and sizes
curries and spicy woks, there are spring rolls simply with from modest snacks to full-blown meals.QI‑8, Totorių
carrots, nuts, beansprouts and cabbage yet are super- 3, tel. (+370) 65 97 74 11, www.jogosmityba.lt.
crispy and taste fab with the dip. The squid rings are soft, Open 11:00 - 22:00, Sat, Sun 12:00 - 22:00. Also at
tender and gently spicy – not like you’d find in a pub. It Savičiaus 13/2. €5.5. A­P­T­S­J­6­W
has a casual, hipster vibe and is highly recommended for a
cheap, quick bite.QJ. Basanavičiaus 37, tel. (+370) 67 76
13 83. Open 12:00 - 22:00. A­J

VEGAN/VEGETARIAN
GYVAS BARAS
Many of the dishes at this informal eatery are vegan, with
daily specials chalked up according to whatever’s in season.
You might find tofu burgers, veggie tacos, oven-roasted
aubergines, pumpkin soup, carrot pancakes and other
delights. The interior may be lacking in character, but the
staff are warm and helpful.QI‑10, Trakų 11/2, tel. (+370)
65 69 29 39, www.gyvasbaras.lt. Open 11:30 - 22:00, Thu
11:30 - 23:00, Fri 11:30 - 23:45, Sat 12:00 - 23:45, Sun
13:00 - 20:00. €5.5. A­P­S­V­J­6­W Local snacks at Senoji Trobelė

facebook.com/VilniusInYourPocket Summer 2018 39


Cafés

Coffee and sweets at Crustum

Vilnius adores coffee, which might explain why everyone is


rushing about so madly every morning. At the best of the CAFÉS
city’s cafés, girls and boys at the bar can advise on the finest CAFFEINE ROASTERS
available beans and grind them up fresh, while at the very The slightly more upscale ‘boutique’ version of the
least you’ll get a caffeine boost and a sweet cake, which is popular local Caffeine chain of cafes highlights one
something the locals excel at. particular country’s bean for its espressos and other
coffees, and if you don’t like that there’s a blend –
which for us tasted much the same as the sharply
BAKERIES acidic Costa Rican beans that were on offer when
CRUSTUM we last called in anyway. Choose your space from a
Among the tasty snacks at this popular chain of cafés are tasteful exposed brick cavern or a brighter, naturally
croissants, wraps, different kinds of freshly baked bread, tiny lit street-side room. Snacks include filled focaccia,
crunchy cheese balls, Italian-style grissini breadsticks... and quiche, cookies and cakes. Find it tucked down a side-
then there’s the delish sweet stuff, too plentiful to name. street.QPylimo st.19, tel. (8-655) 77761, www.shop.
Take a seat with some fresh coffee, or get it packaged to caffeine.lt. Open 07:00 - 22:00, Sat 08:00 - 22:00, Sun
munch somewhere else.QVokiečių 18a, tel. (+370) 64 13 09:00 - 22:00. A­V­W­i
99 22, www.crustum.lt/. Open 07:30 - 22:00, Sat 08:00 -
22:00, Sun 09:00 - 21:00, Also at Vilniaus g. 12 , Pilies g. HURACÁN COFFEE
4. A­P­G­J­W­i One of the country’s top coffee-house chains,
Huracán  knows how to create excellence in a coffee
THIERRY KEPYKLA cup, tapping into an ever-growing passion for the stuff
Currently making waves as the best place in town for and different ways to brew, especially among younger
croissants and coffee for breakfast and now boasting a lot Lithuanians. Amazing fruit juices include raspberry
more space with a grand total of nine tables, any half-way made with vacuum evaporation technology and there
decent addition to the generally grim selection of bakeries are plentiful sweet and savoury snacks too. One of the
in Vilnius is more than welcome. A bit out of the way at the best Huracán branches is at Vokiečių 15, which plays vinyl
top of a steep Užupis hill, by all accounts the walk is worth records in a pleasantly darkened interior, but if you see
the effort.QK‑9, Užupio 13, tel. (+370) 67 90 90 81, www. the name anywhere pop in for a cup.QI‑10, Vokiečių 15,
thierrykepykla.lt. Open 07:00 - 19:00, Sun 09:00 - 18:00, tel. (+370) 52 50 60 92, www.huracan.lt. Open 07:00 -
Also at Vilniaus 45, Švitrigailos 29, Jasinskio 16a, Verkių 22:00, Also at Gedimino 9, Gedimino 35, Saltoniškių 9
29 (Ogmios miestas). A­P­T­S­J­6­W (Panorama), Upės 9, Savanorių 22. A­P­U­S­J­W
40 Vilnius In Your Pocket vilnius.inyourpocket.com
Cafés

ITALALA CAFFÈ SŪRIO DŽIUGAS NAMAI


In Italy, nobody walks around with a plastic takeaway cup; Lithuania’s most famous cheese, hard and not dissimilar to
they go to a real café for their caffeine fix, with real cups. parmesan, is the focus at this café where you can also buy
And here in Vilnius, you won’t find a finer Flat White this attractively packaged baskets and gift-boxes of Džiugas
side of the Baltic Sea than at the new Italala Caffè at the matured to 12, 18 or 36 months. Almost everything is
top of Vokiečių. Crispy cannoli filled with creamy ricotta, made using the cheese, including savoury pastries with
raspberry cake where you inject the jam into it yourself, spinach or chicken and almonds, heated in a microwave.
‘whoopie’ cream sandwiches, pots of jam you can choose The sweet selection is the real draw, such as soft little melt-
for your croissant. Even swings by the windows with a in-the-mouth balls with biscuit or nuts and creamy slices
wide-angle view of the whole street. QVokiečių g.1, tel. of cake. Service can vary, from friendly mature ladies to
(8-610) 34408. Open 07:00 - 20:00, Sat 08:00 - 21:00, Sun scowling youngsters.QI‑8, Jogailos 4, tel. (+370) 52 40
08:00 - 20:00. €. A­G­T­J­W 78 78, www.dziugashouse.lt. Open 08:00 - 22:00, Sat,
Sun 10:00 - 22:00, Also at Aušros vartų 3, Konstitucijos
SUGAMOUR 16 (VCUP).
Perhaps the city’s most elaborate sweet bites yet can be
found in a brightly illuminated display right in front of the UOGIENĖ
door of this gleaming and immaculate Parisian café in Wafer-thin Uogienė (Jam) is jam-packed with goodies,
the Old Town. Faultlessly presented, it’s almost a shame filled to the rafters with homemade butter cakes and
to break them apart, but each has hidden elements you cookies – and grandma’s jams. And this is one creative
can’t see from the outside. We recently treated ourselves Lithuanian grandma; sample the cherry and banana jam,
to a superlative lemon meringue tart (our favourite), an for instance, or kiwi, orange and apricot, or raspberry
evocative raspberry and almond tart and a creamy caramel and pineapple. But she’s up against some tough foreign
cube coated with caramel chocolate. These fancy delights competition, as there’s a fine selection of Portuguese
are not cheap but many a sweet-toothed patron will argue jams on display too. Besides all the sweet stuff, the café
they’re worth every euro. Multi-coloured macaroons are serves Italian-style sandwiches, mulled wine, cider –
lined up too, while drinks include Cortado espresso and and a shot of local cherry liqueur to go with your sea
Kusmi teas.QI‑10, Vokiečių 11, tel. (+370) 68 61 99 95. buckthorn tea.QAušros Vartų 11, tel. (+370) 67 34
Open 08:00 - 22:00, Mon 08:00 - 21:00, Fri, Sat 08:00 - 98 95. Open 08:00 - 20:00, Sat, Sun 10:00 - 20:00. €.
23:00, Sun 09:00 - 21:00. A­P­T­B­6­W T­B­J­i
42 Vilnius In Your Pocket vilnius.inyourpocket.com
Cafés
CATS
CAT CAFE (KAČIŲ KAVINĖ)
Cats never tire of attention, and here there’s no end of it.
Pouncing on a growing trend, Cat Café is popular with couples,
families (but no kids aged under six) and cat lovers of every
stripe, so you may have to wait for a table. The moggies are a
bit retiring, most of them kipping on comfy perches atop claw-
friendly climbing frames. But some will come to you once you
have food on the table. The two waitresses are busier than
the cats, ferrying dishes from the hatch – potato pancakes,
spaghetti, burgers, sandwiches, waffles, milkshakes in mini
milk bottles and coffee with a cute cinnamon paw print on
top. Booze is served too, if you fancy an early start to a night on
the tiles. Minimum order per person is €5.QG‑8, Jasinskio 1,
tel. (+370) 67 13 43 43, www.catcafe.lt. Open 12:00 - 22:00,
Sun 12:00 - 19:00. A­P­S­J­W

TEA
LITTLE MAVIS CAFE
The last place you’d expect to stumble upon two English
gentlemen running a proper tearoom is next to the Gates
of Dawn, yet there it is. The only café in town that has
genuine English scones, not to mention your choice of
seven blends of Fortnum & Mason leaf tea, they can also
rustle you up breakfast any hour of the day.QAušros Vartų
19. Open 09:00 - 18:00. A­P­J­W

LITHUANIA’S COFFEE REVOLUTION


What exactly is it that lies behind Lithuania’s passion for The most responsible café owners personally visit
coffee? Increasing numbers of locals here expect – and cafés small-scale farms in the best regions of Central and South
provide – sensory experiences in their humble cup, together America to take part in direct trade, bidding for lots that
with ultra-knowledgeable service, a cosy atmosphere and a avoid the all-powerful distributors. Through experience
wide choice of beans freshly roasted nearby. they know that quality varies in different regions every
It may go back to the 1980s, when Vilnius earned a year – Nicaragua being excellent in 2017, for instance, as
reputation in Moscow and St Petersburg for having cafés it wasn’t in 2014. Bolivian coffee is highly sought after but
that served the finest cups of coffee this side of Berlin. mired in corruption, yet Huracán managed to get there
Visitors would ‘go west’ to Lithuania just to enjoy the best recently. Now coffee drinkers can expect these prized
coffee they could possibly find in those restrictive times. beans to be available at the chain’s five coffee shops and
Whatever the reasons were that lay behind such claims, espresso bars in Vilnius this spring.
several years ago the passion took off again – this time Taking Huracán as an example among Vilnius’ many
mainly among younger people, who began to care about great cafés, it roasts its beans at a facility in Nemenčinė,
the traceability of the beans they were drinking from. 25 kilometres from Vilnius, using technology that roasts
Were the coffee beans engineered and distributed by beans equally on the inside as well as the outside,
large-scale corporations, they asked, or were they grown resulting in a lighter, brighter roast. More and more cafés
with care on family-owned farms in regions with the now have the option of different brewing tools you can
ideal soil, rainfall, shade level and altitude, deploying the choose for your coffee, but a couple of cafés also have
right pickers, processing equipment and drying method? the rare new Alpha Dominche Steampunk craft brewing
Go to neighbouring Warsaw, Tallinn or Riga and you’ll tech whose precise app-based control guarantees the
be hard pressed to find spots that demonstrate the same perfect brew.
passion and precision as those in Vilnius like, for example, Coffee has come a long way since visitors and locals
Huracán, Caffeine Roasters, next-door Brew (Kavos alike had no other choice but to endure a hissing old
virėjai) and other places where you take a sip, indulge in machine spitting out stuff from the same beans as
the aroma and feel that exquisite, awakening tingling all yesterday. Vilnius is once again the go-to city in the
over your body. region for stunning cups of java.

facebook.com/VilniusInYourPocket Summer 2018 43


Nightlife

It’s cocktail hour at Trinity Bar, Vilniaus Street 30

Now that the city’s wine-drinking crowd have their own LOCAL BREWS
places to imbibe, the city’s nightlife entrepreneurs are Go for any beers that are from boutique breweries
turning their attention to the subject of beer, namely the around the country, at casual bars like Alaus Biblioteka,
regular openings of new places selling brown frothy drinks Bukowski Baras and Trinity. For a taste of something
made in small microbreweries around the country. The very local and a bit odd, squeeze into Šnekutis, which
best are listed here. Some clubs, but not all, apply a cover alternates its beers so regularly it sticks handwritten notes
charge. For the less rowdy, there are plenty of cosier bars on the taps. The craft beer trend continues to evolve, but
worth seeking out. The clubs remain almost exclusively we can’t say the names of our favourites, as Lithuania’s
mainstream, whilst the city’s gay and lesbian scene is new alcohol law prohibits publications from doing so. All
almost as far underground as a Soviet nuclear test site. Note we can humbly suggest to you is that you ask the nice
that face control is currently on the rise in Vilnius; if yours person behind the bar for advice on the finest brews.
doesn’t fit, forget it. Wearing a decent pair of shoes usually Some establishments are thoughtfully starting to open
helps. Leave your trainers at home and have fun! almost all night, like Endless Bar.

NIGHT SHIFTS CLUB ACTION


The times when Vilnius’ nightlife seemed a bit naff have gone. For all-night (almost) dancefloor action, several venues
Completely. But the illuminated streets are definitely at their provide memorable combinations of excellent sound and
liveliest late on Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights, usually light systems, great drinks and friendly strangers. Vilnius
after 22:00. The city’s night scene is constantly changing, has a little something for everyone in this regard. For a
with lots of the action now taking place on certain streets touch of the exotic and fabulous cocktails go to Mojo
in the Old Town such as Vilniaus, Islandijos, Labdarių, Totorių, Lounge, for a raucous, gorgeous crowd try Pantera, and
Stiklių, Vokiečių, Didžioji and Aušros Vartų. Don’t forget to for Latino beats and a slightly more mature throng go for
take in Paparazzi, masters of the mixed drink. Pabo Latino.
The gradual process of gentrification taking place
throughout Lithuania unfortunately means that once-
legendary watering holes like the raucous Writers’ Union
Bar, which is now a rather more acceptable cocktail bar (at Get the In Your Pocket
Sirvydo 6), are disappearing from the city centre. Try edgier
bars near Halės Market and around the southern end of City Essentials App
Pylimo Street.
44 Vilnius In Your Pocket vilnius.inyourpocket.com
Nightlife
BIX
BARS This maze-like interior over several floors is the oldest rock
ALAUS BIBLIOTEKA bar in Lithuania and still boasts a unique charm. It has
Up the stairs at the Beer Library, the main topic of single-handedly raised an entire generation of locals over
conversation is exactly that – beer. The vast display of some 25 years of operation who love the music, the relaxed
bottled pilsners, bitters, stouts, lagers, Franco-Belgian, atmosphere and, of course, the bar’s crucial drink – beer,
German, Celtic, American and other brews covering two the selection of which is satisfyingly extensive.QI‑10,
walls plus around 15 lined up on tap provide the visual Etmonų 6, tel. (+370) 52 62 77 91, www.bix.lt. Open
prompts, and the barmen never tire of making personal 12:00 - 24:00, Wed, Thu 12:00 - 02:00, Fri 12:00 - 05:00,
recommendations. Of the Lithuanian beers try the strong, Sat 12:00 - 04:00. A­B­E­S­J­6­W
sweet and aromatic Gubernija Doppelbock. Busy as
soon as evening begins, the tables and stools are quickly BUKOWSKI
occupied. If you’re hungry, tasty pizza can be brought up The hip and the trendy have turned shabby into shabby
from below.QH‑10, Trakų 4, tel. (+370) 52 12 68 74. chic at a bar named after the unrepentant hard-drinking,
Open 17:00 - 24:00, Sat 15:00 - 24:00. Closed Mon, Sun. womanising American poet. He would certainly have
A­P­B­J­6­W approved of the local craft beers, especially the lovely
draught Dundulis brews, and an expanded choice of booze
ARTISTAI lines the wall behind the bar. Opulent hot dogs are grilled
The strongest side of this live music bar is its huge courtyard and served in trays – with refried beans, macaroni cheddar
in spring and summer with an impressive terrace and the and, best of all, caramelised onions.QI‑11, Visų Šventųjų
chance to see performances by talented and upcoming 7, tel. (+370) 64 05 88 55. Open 17:00 - 02:00, Fri, Sat
local artists, who climb up onstage straight from the 17:00 - 04:00, Sun 17:00 - 00:00. A­E­J­W
street (or neighbouring table). Though some shows can
be more funny than impressive, the regulars say that it’s DĖVĖTI
only here you can witness performances by truly gifted Within the space of a few years, this lively bar has become
youngsters. The menu is as diverse and unpretentious as one of the characteristic symbols of the revitalisation of the
the performances – tasty pizzas, baguettes, pasta, etc. – area surrounding the city’s bus and rail stations. Now it’s
and there’s oceans of super-popular Lithuanian beer. After a place for get-togethers for casually dressed youngsters,
the third glass you may want to climb on stage yourself, local intellectuals and people who love hearty talks over
but before doing that make sure you have something to pints of beer. Exuding life and spirit, its bar is crowned with
show.QJ‑10, Šv. Kazimiero 3, tel. (+370) 52 12 12 68, 14 beer taps – from lager to porter, from wheat to rye and
www.artistai.lt. Open 11:00 - 02:00, Mon 11:00 - 24:00, exclusive varieties of local ale.QI‑11, Sodų 3, tel. (+370)
Fri 11:00 - 04:00, Sat 12:00 - 04:00, Sun 12:00 - 24:00. 52 50 27 64/(+370) 67 76 17 68. Open 15:00 - 01:00.
A­B­E­S­J­6­W A­B­E­J­W

BARAS ŠUO DIRTY DUCK


“Dog Bar” isn’t for dogs, though they’re welcome too, but for Amid a dark, brick-wood-and-leather interior on the second
male anthropoid strays drifting around the further reaches floor of an Old Town entertainment venue, international
of Gedimino. It’s no bigger than a dark cardboard box, plays beers are poured, cocktails expertly mixed – we love the
rock and metal, and is decorated with beer crates, guitars refreshing berry-flavoured house drink – and countless
and dog pictures. The grey-bearded biker barman took pity whiskies deliberated over. Chat to locals to the sound of
on us and introduced us to various craft beers by Dundulis dated hits, or order slap-up dishes like burgers or pork ribs
like the excellent Gutstoutas stout. Spicy olives were on with apple sauce. Plus there are views from the Duck over
offer too. A fellow customer in denim, unsteady on his feet, the Town Hall, often romantically lit in the evening.QJ‑10,
extolled the virtues of non-alcoholic beer, and other crazy Didžioji 28, tel. (+370) 52 31 26 41, www.dirtyduck.eu.
things happened which we can’t remember.QGedimino Open 11:00 - 03:00, Fri, Sat 11:00 - 06:00. A­P­S­J­W
pr. 39/ Ankštoji g. 1, tel. (+370) 67 61 27 08. Open 17:00
- 22:00, Fri, Sat 17:00 - 24:00. Closed Sun.

BARDAKAS
The name of this often insanely busy bar means ‘messy
place’ and it can get so crowded on weekend nights the
guy at the door has to turn people away. If you come early
enough to secure table seating, you’re lucky. Everyone else
has to rub limbs while they dance or edge their way past
the DJ to the bar, to order cocktails with fruit syrup and chilli
peppers, or G&Ts with popcorn. Get plates of generously
topped nachos too, for everyone!QVilniaus 22, tel. (+370)
63 33 06 99. Open 17:00 - 01:00, Fri, Sat 17:00 - 04:00. Lively nightlife at Carré (see restaurants)

facebook.com/VilniusInYourPocket Summer 2018 45


Nightlife
ENDLESS BAR HOOTERS
With bizarre opening hours that typically start at weekends Hooters is slang for breasts. If you don’t know the brand
at 3am, we’ve never been awake or motivated or focused from its 160+ restaurants around the world, the serving
enough at that hour to take a look. But we’ve been told that girls have to wear a ‘uniform’ with low-cut top and orange
this neon spotlit basement bar inspired by the wild era of hot pants and interact with and entertain the customers.
prohibtion shakes great cocktails, pours well-chosen beers But we could see the girls are skilled in reading each set
and has been known to stay open until well after normal of clients, not feeling pressured to be overbearing for
people are having breakfast.QTrakų 2, tel. (8-672) 58591. everyone. The menu’s much the same as any other Hooters
Open Fri 03:00 - 09:00, Sat, Sun 03:00 - 10:00. Closed – wings and beer, burgers and grills, buffalo shrimps, curly
Mon, Tue, Wed, Thu. €. A­J­W fries, sauces from the US, and five kinds of Margarita. If you
can accept the concept, it’s bright, lively and frequented
ETMONŲ ŠPUNKA also by women, even families.QVilniaus 16, tel. (8-624)
An alehouse pouring unfussy, affordable pub beer in a 74229, www.hooters.lt. Open 11:00 - 23:00, Fri, Sat 11:00
lovely, sloppy, sticky environment in the Old Town, this - 02:00.
bar is packed in the evenings with people who crave
atmosphere over pretension. The building used to be an JUODA RAUDONA
experimental medical facility. Sadly, one day soon, it will A sophisticated bar and grill and translating as Black Red,
be turned into a nice, tidy hotel. Until then, take advantage though the red is more of an orange in places, weekdays
of Dundulis’ seasonal, medieval-style gruit ales, made with provide the opportunity to drink fancy cocktails and eat
heather in November or wormwood in spring. Ask the reasonably priced meals in a comfy environment, while
barman for advice.QEtmonų 3, tel. (8-685) 11856, www. spying on passers-by from the huge windows. Late-
spunka.lt. Open 17:00 - 01:00, Fri, Sat 17:00 - 03:00. night weekend sessions bring with them tough face
control, mainstream DJs and, should your face (or rather
your clothes) fit, the occasional dancer to add a little
CHAMPAGNE spice to your evening.QH‑8, A. Vienuolio 4, tel. (+370)
68 45 89 78, www.juodaraudona.lt. Open 11:00 -
ÉPERNAY 23:00, Fri 11:00 - 08:00, Sat 18:00 - 06:00. Closed Sun.
This exclusive cellar bar has repositioned itself right in A­P­B­S­J­W
the middle of the jazzier end of town, and it especially
livens up on Thursdays when boxes of fresh oysters KING & MOUSE
arrive. Slurp them down along with cool champagne, The owners of this spot, on what could be the Old
classy cocktails, or just beer, alongside the city’s Town’s tiniest lane, run an intriguing venue for anyone
moneyed elite.QVilniaus 27, tel. (+370) 63 33 32 85. who just can’t get enough whisky. Featuring more than
Open 17:00 - 24:00. Closed Mon, Sun. B­J­W 300 brands, classes and blends from around the world
as well as other drinks and decent food, everything is
SELFISH BISTRO located within two bar spaces and a shop. Surplus to the
It took a while for Selfish to find its audience, but now usual improvised drinking sessions is a range of tasting
this oyster and champagne bar has really taken off. A events and panderings to the connoisseur.QH‑10,
location on one of the Old Town’s most action-packed Trakų 2, tel. (+370) 65 77 31 21. Open 17:00 - 01:00,
streets by night helps, and it’s hard to find a seat in Thu 17:00 - 02:00, Fri, Sat 17:00 - 04:00. Closed Mon,
evenings late in the week when the accordion plays Sun. A­B­J­W
to the sound of slurping.QVilniaus 29, tel. (+370) 65
61 13 30. Open Tue, Wed 17:00 - 23:00, Thu 17:00 - MARSAS
00:00, Fri 17:00 - 02:00, Sat 14:00 - 02:00, Sun 14:00 Mars does what it does really well, from its deliciously
- 23:00. Closed Mon. A­P­J­6­W different breakfasts and brunches to its scrumptious bar
food – buffalo wings, fat burgers, fish and chips. But first
THE BUBBLES. CHAMPAGNERIA and foremost this is a friendly, non-attitude bar in the
New to Vilnius but a simple concept, this is an evening Old Town that has all the essentials – filter coffee, craft
bar dedicated to champagnes, sparkling wines and beer, major brews on tap, and a healthy obsession with
prosecco, at least 30 of each, and on the board a small David Lynch.QTrakų 15, tel. (+370) 52 69 57 12. Open
selection available on that day by the glass. Bubble 16:00 - 02:00, Wed 16:00 - 03:00, Thu 16:00 - 04:00,
freaks can spend quality time with a bottle in an ice Fri 16:00 - 05:00, Sat 12:00 - 05:00, Sun 12:00 - 02:00.
bucket between them. The interior is 50 shades of A­P­J­W
black, but it’s friendly, elegant and spotless, the cool
dark emphasising the views of the street and the park
and the sparkles in your glass.QH‑9, Vilniaus 35, tel. Get the In Your Pocket
(+370) 64 77 25 57. Open 17:00 - 02:00, Thu, Fri, Sat
17:00 - 04:00, Sun 17:00 - 01:00. A­J­W City Essentials App

46 Vilnius In Your Pocket vilnius.inyourpocket.com


Nightlife
PERONAS
Perhaps the city’s most daring hipster-style bar of them all,
Peronas (‘platform’) takes up a capacious space right by the
railway tracks beside the train station. Pleasantly dimly lit, it
supplies a steady stream of Moscow mules, dirty martinis
and Czech and local beers to thirsty, shambolic crowds that
grow in number on weekend nights when DJs and live
bands come to play. We especially enjoyed a recent rowdy
series of Balkan and klezmer nights.QGeležinkelio 6, tel.
(+370) 61 67 47 54. Open 17:00 - 04:00, Mon, Sun 17:00 -
01:00, Tue, Wed 17:00 - 02:00. A­B­J­W

ROCK RIVER CLUB


Slurp beer and headbang, or at least stomp your feet, to a
diet of classic and heavy rock played at enormous volume
in a cavernous space with a door at the side of the riverside
shopping centre VCUP. Icons from Jimi to Lemmy greet
you from beyond the grave as you descend the stairs, and
inside, amiable staff ferry around tankards of fine beer from
smaller Lithuanian breweries as well as chicken wings and
mini-burgers. Regular live music veers from blues to rock
to punk.QUpės 9, tel. (+370) 62 07 22 55. Open 17:00
- 00:00, Thu, Fri, Sat 17:00 - 03:00, Sun 17:00 - 23:00,
Closed Mon. €. A­P­X­E­J­W

SELFIECIDE BAR
Get your low-key kicks, your jungle and drum n bass, at
this underground (literally) bar just off Gedimino. Order
a David Lynch cocktail and crunchy chicken pieces while
your eardrums absorb the drones of the Rasta DJ. Order
a burger and you get a shot of chilled Jägermeister on COCAINN
the house, or so they told us; we weren’t hungry. We just Occupying three rooms catering to different tastes, there are
slurped a Newcastle Brown, nodding as the dub washed crowded bars with fiery barmen shows, a lounge for cocktails
over us.QVilniaus 12, tel. (+370) 61 51 40 67. Open and beers, a ‘quiet’ room where guests can eat from a menu
19:00 - 06:00, Mon, Tue, Sun 19:00 - 02:00, Wed 19:00 of gourmet dishes and, of course, a good old-fashioned
- 07:00. night club with dancing girls dressed as nurses among
other things. There’s also a spot for smoking cigars. Party
ŽVĖRYNO SMUKLĖ until the morning with a full house of revellers. The perfect
The bend-in-the-river residential district of Žvėrynas is introduction to Eastern European nightlife.QI‑8, Gedimino
always a pleasure to explore, with its criss-cross lanes and 2a, tel. (+370) 60 04 78 62. Open 22:00 - 06:00, Tue 22:00 -
eclectic mix of wooden houses, art deco cubes, modern 04:00, Wed 22:00 - 05:00. Closed Mon, Sun. A­P­J­W
mansions and riverside views. Close to the onion-domed
Orthodox church is this old-fashioned delight of a bar- MOJO LOUNGE VILNIUS
restaurant. Its inexpensive potato pancakes are the best A gorgeous place, decked out in style without ever going
in town, perfect with a beer, and the interior is utterly over-the-top, with a powerful sound system, sumptuous
informal, like all good taverns, while the streetside benches lighting and sexy patrons. Mojo Lounge hosts loads of
are popular in summer.QVytauto 37, tel. (+370) 61 13 74 regular parties, wild nights and live events and attracts a
99, www.zverynosmukle.lt/en/about-us. Open 10:30 - varied, affluent crowd. It’s the kind of club where you don’t
23:30, Sat, Sun 12:00 - 23:00. €. A­J have to worry about feeling too old, or too young. Top
music, and the service is good too (it doesn’t take all night
to get a drink). A winner!QI‑10, Vokiečių 2, tel. (+370)
CLUBS 65 76 65 00, www.mojolounge.lt. Open 23:00 - 05:00.
As any serious clubber already knows, nights change with Closed Mon, Tue, Wed, Thu, Sun. Entrance free or from
alarming regularity, good promoters come and go and €3 €€. A­P­X­E­J
expected crowds fail to turn up. The good news about
clubbing in Vilnius is that entrance prices are relatively
low and the city is remarkably small. If you do happen to Where’s the party?
stumble on a non-event, relocating to another club is both facebook.com/VilniusInYourPocket
quick and affordable.
facebook.com/VilniusInYourPocket Summer 2018 47
Nightlife
Read more reviews online: COCKTAILS
vilnius.inyourpocket.com ALCHEMIKAS
It’s about time a cocktail bar came along that was more
OPIUM about the art of cocktails than the pretence of the
Located above the Asian restaurant Briusly (yes, Bruce cocktail bar sensation. Specialising in both classic and
Lee), Opium is run by international DJs who’ve created a modern mixed drinks, it’s worth paying them a visit just
Berlin superclub in miniature. It’s a bit cramped and starkly to have a peep at the extraordinary interior, and if you
minimal, but the Funktion One sound-system is the best do choose to stick around, expect to be bankrupt by
in the city and it’s worth a look even if you don’t recognise the end of the evening thanks to the addictive allure of
any names on the lineup. Intelligent face control ensures the magnificent mixology. Note that this is one of the
drunks, idiots and folks who buy their clothes at markets smallest bars in Vilnius, so serious cocktail lovers should
remain outside.QH‑9, Islandijos 4, tel. (+370) 69 14 12 come on Wednesday or Thursday, as Friday can be very
05, www.opiumclub.lt/. Open 23:00 - 06:00. Closed Mon, full. Recommended.QH‑9, Islandijos 1, tel. (+370) 62
Tue, Wed, Thu, Sun. €€. A­X­E­J­W 02 54 00. Open 18:00 - 02:00, Fri, Sat 18:00 - 03:00.
A­B­J
PABO LATINO
With three halls and two bars of sheer class, Pabo Latino BJØRN
pumps out music that’s either live or courtesy of some We started (when it was empty) and ended (when it was
excellent DJs, while its massive cocktail menu is full full) our Friday night at Bjørn recently, a spot that has
of refreshing delights. The club of choice for 20- and replaced an earlier incarnation called Berlin. Expertly
30-something professionals, it keeps a tough-but-fair mixed (but not cheap) signature cocktails, a darkly
door policy so that what you get inside is a well-behaved sparkling interior, a beautiful crowd of locals and a
bunch of smart, good-looking people out for a fun evening groovy DJ. This corner of the Old Town, on Islandijos and
in pleasant and sometimes wild surroundings. On some Vilniaus, is still the must-experience late-night hotspot
nights there are lessons on how to dance Latino-style, in Vilnius. Berlin is dead, long live Bjørn!QIslandijos 1,
but late on weekend nights the music is as electro as it tel. (+370) 60 96 16 16. Open Wed 18:00 - 01:00, Thu
is Latino.QH‑10, Trakų 3, tel. (+370) 52 62 10 45, www. 18:00 - 03:00, Fri, Sat 18:00 - 04:00. Closed Mon, Tue,
pabolatino.lt. Open Thu 21:00 - 03:00, Fri, Sat 21:00 - Sun. A­B­J
05:00. Closed Mon, Tue, Wed, Sun. Admission free or €5
- 10 €€. A­P­X­B­E­J DISTILERIJA
We enjoyed watching our Smoked Manhattan cocktail
PANTERA get made at this jazzy joint in the Old Town populated
Enjoy cool cocktails and hot clubbing at this thumpingly mostly by young professionals. The restless yet steady-
popular venue on the edge of the Old Town, where the handed, denim-attired barman blowtorched a piece
crowd who make past the hardworking face control are of wood and placed the glass upside-down on the
young, fashionable and supremely attractive, while the blackened splinters, then filled it with rye whisky,
place itself is much the same. It looks fabulous, packed vermouth and angostura bitters. Sit at the bar and you
with comfy black leather sofas ripe for chilling on with feel dwarfed by the sheer number of bottles, mostly
your expertly made drink. Watching the bar staff in action whiskies, but there are many draught and bottled beers
is a night out in itself and the waitresses are as gorgeous too including English bitter, Witte Parel and the strong
as the clientele. You’ll love it the moment you walk in. local Bocmano ūsai IPA. The food highlights are beer-
QVilniaus 33, tel. (+370) 62 63 73 43. Fri, Sat 23:00 - battered fish and chips, lamb sausages and sticky pork
05:00. A­P­X­W ribs, all excellent.QVilniaus 28, tel. (+370) 64 53 12 06.
Open 11:00 - 02:00, Fri 11:00 - 05:00, Sat 12:00 - 05:00,
Sun 12:00 - 02:00. A­P­J­W

LOVE BAR
We love Love Bar! Look for the pink heart above stairs
leading into a basement and discover the coolest,
friendliest cocktail bar in the city, a neon-lit cavern by the
market. Try every one of the clever but unpretentious drinks
and snacks on the menu, from the citrusy honeyed vodka to
the elderflower concoctions to the smoky-aubergine baba
ganoush to the brandy-infused chicken liver pâté. Open
to everyone, regardless of orientation, you’re guaranteed
a warm welcome.QPylimo 59, tel. (+370) 64 39 94 17.
Open 18:00 - 00:00, Fri, Sat 18:00 - 02:00. Closed Mon,
Good friends and brews at Šnekutis Tue, Sun. €€. A­J­W
48 Vilnius In Your Pocket vilnius.inyourpocket.com
Nightlife

NOMADS COCKTAIL BAR PATAJA


We dropped into this chic lounge on our last cocktail crawl Pricey cocktails for pretty people and a DJ spinning funky
through the Old Town and were not disappointed with the R’n’B  tunes is the regular thang on weekend nights at this
deep, refreshing tastes of the cucumber gimlet spiked with open-until-very-late Old Town haunt. There’s often live music
pricey gin and green chartreuse. Open to any thirsty passing too, usually with young-but-old-school crooners. A cool terrace
wanderer, Nomads is a seasonal cocktail bar that changes is open whatever the weather, extending  the proceedings,
its menu of six painstakingly concocted mixes every few which tend to get fairly lively in the early hours.QLiejyklos 3,
weeks. Or you can describe the drink of your dreams and tel. (+370) 65 75 00 57, www.pataja.lt. Open Fri, Sat 21:00 -
they’ll make it for you. It’s classy but has no dress code, 05:00. Closed Mon, Tue, Wed, Thu, Sun. A­B­J
and usually no reservations are required. QDidžioji 5, tel.
(+370) 67 60 89 11, www.nomads-cocktail-bar.business. SANATORIJA
site. Wed 17:00 - 02:00, Thu 17:00 - 03:00, Fri, Sat 17:00 - The twist in your cocktail at this popular Old Town spot
04:00. Closed Mon, Tue, Sun. A­J is that it’s playfully based on sanatorium treatments, the
menu singing the praises of an underground gin spring
PAPARAZZI and promoting the healing properties of a relaxing gin
This super-social nighttime mainstay mixes always massage. It’s a fantastic bar with lots of dark, candlelit space
reliable cocktails in a fun atmosphere and the girls and and shapely chandeliers, the smart, polite staff experts in
boys sipping Cuba libres and multiple versions of mojito gin cocktails of every description. We loved the dense,
are crowded on stools and huddled around a rectangular intense ‘clover club’ with egg white, raspberries, lemon juice
bar, their faces bathed in a warm red glow. Monochrome and a spicy aftertaste. Ideal for small groups, a romantic
blow-ups of stars of the silver screen watch as friends and date, even your mother for a G&T.QVilniaus 22, tel. (+370)
strangers buy each other drinks and others shift together 63 33 63 93. Open 18:00 - 01:00, Thu 18:00 - 02:00, Fri,
on the dance floor beside the DJ. Hosting popular quiz Sat 18:00 - 04:00. A­P­E­J­W
nights on weekdays, Paparazzi is at its best on teeming
weekends from midnight until 03:00, which is when we
often drop by for an electric-blue adios mother f*cker Get the In Your Pocket
kick.QI‑8, Totorių 1, tel. (+370) 52 12 01 35, www.
paparazzi.lt. Open 19:00 - 03:00, Fri, Sat 19:00 - 06:00. City Essentials App
A­P­J­W
facebook.com/VilniusInYourPocket Summer 2018 49
Nightlife
MICROBREWERIES
ALINĖ LEIČIAI
The next logical step in the evolution of the specialist
Lithuanian beer bar, Leičiai also doubles as a restaurant
serving classic traditional local food. As well as a space
for drinking the range of superb Lithuanian beers on
offer from small microbreweries around the country,
this pleasant watering hole also features two dining
halls, one with an open kitchen and a small beer
garden out the back.QI‑10, Stiklių 4, tel. (+370) 52
60 90 87. Open 11:00 - 24:00. A­P­B­S­J­6­W
Busy night on Pilies in Old Town © www.vilnius-tourism.lt
BŪSI TREČIAS
Meaning something along the lines of You’ll be the third, VARIOKAS STEAMPUNK BAR
which in this part of the world spells bad luck, Būsi Trečias Making the 19th century fashionable again, that era of
functions as one of the capital’s only microbreweries as dangerous inventions, bizarre experiments, odd discoveries
well as a better than average place to dine on gut-busting and weird creatures, this ‘steampunk’ bar is a fabulous
local dishes. Downstairs is a genuinely good bar, whilst brick cellar designed with industrial cogs and brass pipes,
the large upper level has the feel of a demented German a few steps from Gedimino Avenue. The mad lab tests
beer hall complete with sozzled groups of locals singing extend to the cocktails, including a lesser-known electric
patriotic songs and falling off the wooden benches. blue version of Long Island iced tea and Old Vic, with gin,
QTotorių 18, tel. (+370) 61 81 12 66, www.busitrecias. champagne and balsamic vinegar. Our ‘blood and sand’
lt. Open 11:00 - 23:00, Thu 11:00 - 24:00, Fri, Sat 11:00 - was deliciously, darkly potent. The music could be a touch
02:00, Sun 11:00 - 23:00. A­P­B­J­W more adventurous, but in Vilnius that would run the risk of
scaring off the fun-loving crowds, who book tables ahead
CRAFT & DRAFT for the weekend DJs.QA. Jakšto 9, tel. (+370) 68 35 15
Brewing six beers on the premises, including an 61, www.variokas.lt/. Open 17:00 - 01:00, Fri, Sat 17:00
excellent honey beer and an IPA, this relaxed cellar - 04:00. A­P
microbrewery has a friendly aura and bouncy jazzy
music, its seating memorably in sight of the cathedral
in summer. Try the pork ribs or halloumi burger if you CRAFT BEER
can, or go for one of 80 whiskies from Sweden, India BROMAS
or Taiwan to chase the beer down.QGedimino 5, tel. Discover some truly memorable craft beers and a range
(+370) 60 57 75 55, www.craft-draft.business.site. of very special meats, from matured deer loin to dried
Open 16:00 - 01:00, Thu, Fri 16:00 - 03:00, Sat 12:00 - beef to elk and other beasts. Even get a chunk of flesh to
03:00, Sun 14:00 - 23:00. A­P­B­J­W take away. Sometimes the young folks here make salmon
soup or venison stew, which perfectly suit the brews
ŠNEKUTIS poured by the friendly bartenders. It’s small, so be ready
Not a microbrewery as such, Šnekutis sneaks into to eat and drink standing up. But that meat is really worth
this section on account of hoarding traditional, it.QSavičiaus 11-26, tel. (+370) 67 71 60 37. Open
microbrewery-brewed beers from all corners of the 17:00 - 24:00. B­J
country. Some of this is live, meaning it only lasts a
few days, not unlike the hangover that goes with the
superb 12 per cent Stačias from Panevėžys. A couple of
large ones of these and you might find yourself rolling
down the mysterious staircase by the toilet. Should this
happen, don’t be surprised to find yourself fished out by
the barman, a personable gentleman with a theatrical
moustache. Highly recommended, and extremely
popular, meaning it’s not uncommon to find yourself
sharing a bench with a strange Lithuanian man eating
unidentified animal parts from a bowl. Rare for Lithuania,
Šnekutis doesn’t have table service. Order at the bar.
QI‑11, Šv. Mikalojaus 15, tel. (+370) 65 69 94 59,
www.jususnekutis.lt/en/333-2/. Open 11:00 - 23:00.
Also at Polocko 7a, Šv. Stepono 8. A­P­S­J
Cocktails at Paparazzi So many beers, so little time

50 Vilnius In Your Pocket vilnius.inyourpocket.com


Nightlife
Get the In Your Pocket
City Essentials App

NISHA CRAFT CAPITAL


Featuring small and unusual breweries from around the
world, dimly lit Nisha is a treasure trove of craft beers that
novices and enthusiasts alike will be amazed by. More
than 20 draught beers alternate regularly and are scruffily
chalked up on the board, while about 100 more are in
bottles. For us, a glass of Viciously Viscous barley wine
warmed the cockles on a chilly evening. There’s no kitchen,
but plates of cheeses or game meat give you something to
chew on.QL. Stuokos - Gucevičiaus 9, tel. (+370) 61 13
00 30. Open 15:00 - 23:00, Mon 16:00 - 22:00, Sat 14:00 -
23:00, Sun 15:00 - 22:00.

PROHIBICIJA
A tiny space stacked out with craft beers mainly from
Denmark, like the bitter blonde Campale or the peaty, smoky
Polish-style Grätze, and a hundred others, Prohibition also
sells the finest limited-edition Lithuanian craft beers by
Sakiškių near Vilnius and Kaunas’ Genys. Gluten-free beers
are available too. If space is tight, carry your choice to a table
in one of the neighbouring bars.QArklių 6, tel. (+370) 68
78 62 74, www.prohibicija.lt. Open 17:00 - 24:00, Fri, Sat
17:00 - 02:00, Closed Mon, Sun. A­B­J

HOOKAHS
CAIT BLU
Cait Blue tries to be all things to all people but ends
up falling between the barstools. Everything here is a
contradiction, and maybe that’s the point. In the morning,
pull in for an English breakfast, though not quite a full one,
with a Greek-style iced espresso poured into a cocktail
glass. For lunch, wash down your juicy Jackie Boy pulled
pork burger with a rose gin and tonic cocktail created by
the brash, bearded barman. Try to eat while slouched in the
low, custom-made armchairs. By evening, do what really
suits this laidback bar, and smoke a hookah.QBokšto 1,
tel. (+370) 52 10 42 26. Open 09:00 - 21:00. A­B

Tony Soprano is a regular at Peronas

facebook.com/VilniusInYourPocket Summer 2018 51


Nightlife
THE NAME GAME LGBT
Attitudes towards minority groups in Lithuania are slowly
You’re not another one of those people who needs a changing for the better, with a handful of brave individuals
helping hand chatting up girls in Lithuania’s bars and spearheading campaigns for equal rights armed with
clubs, are you? First, check you’re not annoying them. both courage and a firm understanding of Lithuanian
Then the best way to check if a local woman is married law. One such person is the gay Lithuanian film director
is to ask simply what their name is. Their full name. Romas Zabarauskas, who in 2012 along with a number
The giveaway is that female surnames change of local LGBT activists launched a campaign encouraging
after marriage, to not only adopting the husband’s but restaurants and bars in Vilnius to display an LGBT Friendly
also taking the suffix ‘ienė’. So if your interlocutor says sticker on their doors.
her surname is Petrauskienė, for example, then she’s
married, to a man named Petrauskas. If she tells you her SOHO
name is Kazlauskienė, she’s tied the knot with a chap At the only venue in Vilnius for the LGBT community, one
called Kazlauskas. But if it ends in ‘aitė’, ‘ytė’ or ‘utė’, for space is for drinking and chatting, another for dance-
instance Jonaitytė, Povilaitė or Butkutė, then she’s as orientated activities, both then subdivided further and
good as young, free and single. Though muddying the decorated in a somewhat eclectic yet rather fetching
water slightly is the fact that many divorced women style. If you want to grab someone’s attention beyond
choose to keep their married names. the twinkling of an eye, send a text message for it to be
Some brave Lithuanian feminists have attacked the displayed on a large screen. Tends to be closed in summer.
fact that men do not have to change their names at all QG‑10, Švitrigailos 7, tel. (+370) 69 93 95 67, www.
throughout their lives. So ladies hunting for a faithful sohoclub.lt. Open 22:00 - 07:00. Closed Mon, Tue, Wed,
mate never know when they meet a man if he’s married Thu, Sun. Entrance fee - €5. A­P­W
or not and just have to take their word for it.
Mirroring the growing trend of double-barrelled
surnames in other countries, a few married couples LIVE EVENTS
are opting for the wife to keep both her maiden name JAZZ CELLAR 11
and the husband’s name with a dash connecting them, Vilnius’ longstanding love affair with jazz lives on in this
while as usual the husband keeps his own name. But pulsating cellar bar close to the Gates of Dawn. Operating
given the sheer length of your average Lithuanian outside the summer season, mostly at weekends, the warm
name, this can result in absurdly (yet absolutely atmosphere raises the temperature on even the chilliest of
uniquely) stretch-limo full names and a real mouthful. nights.QAušros vartų 11, tel. (+370) 68 41 13 82, www.
Margarita Ciplinskaitė-Obolevičius, say. vilniusjazzclub.lt. Open 20:00 - 24:00. Closed Mon, Tue,
There are around 50,000 surnames in Lithuania, Sun. A­P­E­J
a nation of some 3 million souls. Surnames’ origins
are varied, as Juozas Kudirka writes in his book ‘The KABLYS
Lithuanians’. Some come from ancestors’ nicknames, On intense Friday nights fuelled by tequila-flavoured
such as Baltakis (white-eyed), Didgalvis (big-headed) Desperados lager or local craft beers like Laužo liepsna (Fire
or Kuprys (hunchback) while others originate from Flame) and Pievų rūko (Meadow Fog), wild locals and hostel
the names of trades as they do in other languages, like guests throw themselves around to drum’n’bass. Minimal
Dailidė (carpenter), Kubilius (cooper), Puodžius (potter) Mondays, meanwhile, are reserved for calming ambient
or Račius (wheelwright), or from local place names. recovery. Video installations add an extra dimension to the
Locals love to ‘Lithuanianise’ foreigners’ names. If sound entertainment. Gazpacho, seafood pasta and paella
someone tries writing down your name, the chances are hashed together at these and other times.QKauno 5,
are you won’t recognise yourself. If your name happens tel. (+370) 66 52 14 16, www.mankablys.lt. Open 23:00
to be John Smith, in Lithuania you will become known - 06:00, Mon 21:00 - 02:00, Thu 22:00 - 02:00. Closed Tue,
as Jonas (pronounced ‘Yonas’) Smitas. Philip Jones will Wed, Sun. A­B­W
become Filipas Džounsas. Daniel Craig turns into Danielis
Kreigas, or perhaps Džeimsas Bondas, or maybe even TAMSTA
‘dabel-ou-sevenas’. As you may have noticed, many male A brave attempt by the people who run the excellent music
names end in ‘as’. So if you’re a bloke and you’re met with shop downstairs to bring live bands of many persuasions
a furrowed brow when saying your name, simply try to a half-starved audience. Music ranges from jazz to art-
adding ‘as’ (but not ‘ass’) on the end. rock to old fashioned rock and roll, there’s a long bar to
Female names are much easier to convert and have keep everyone fed and watered, and once a month it hosts
few discernible differences from their western versions. an Open Mic Day where outsiders can improvise along
Emily turns into Emilija, Gabrielle becomes Gabrielė, with other like-minded wannabe musicians.QJ‑11, A.
Camille transforms into Kamilė. In this way at least, life Strazdelio 1, tel. (+370) 52 12 44 98, www.tamstaclub.
can be so much easier if you’re a girl. lt. Open 19:00 - 24:00, Fri, Sat 19:00 - 02:00. Closed Mon,
Tue, Sun. A­P­E­J­W
52 Vilnius In Your Pocket vilnius.inyourpocket.com
Nightlife
WINE STRIP CLUBS
NOTRE VIE
The oldest wine bar in Vilnius runs only selected boutique KALIGULA
and awarded wines, which are exclusively displayed in After a hard day building bridges, killing people on
this cosy bar – meaning you won’t find anything you’d a whim and trying to get your horse ordained as a
normally find down the supermarket.QI‑9, Stiklių 10, tel. priest, swish into this little nook for some upper-class
(+370) 61 42 45 21/(+370) 65 68 70 99. Open 12:00 - depravity. Small, simple and stylish.QI‑10, Pylimo 38,
03:00. A­P­B­E­S­J­6­W tel. (+370) 52 63 63 24, www.kaligulaclub.lt. Open
21:00 - 06:00. Entrance €30. A­P­J
PANE E VINO
A tiny space in the artful district of Užupis has become a cosy, OLDTOWN CLUB
candlelit, rustic Tuscan living room where you can enjoy an Expect a thumping, throbbing experience on and
Italian sandwich filled with authentic meats and cheeses. around the plump sofas of this red-lit club at an Old
Add to that the best lasagne in Vilnius and some incredible Town address. There’s more theatre to these shows,
wines and you have a truly magical little place.QUžupio 13, which tend to attract a bigger crowd than similar
tel. (+370) 67 00 12 70. Open 12:00 - 22:00, Fri, Sat 12:00 - venues around the city.QI‑10, Rūdninkų 14, tel. (8-5)
23:00, Sun 12:00 - 21:00. €. A­P­J­6­W 212 1349/+370 699 78811, www.oldtown.lt. Open
20:00 - 06:00, Closed Sun. Entrance €20. A­P­J
SOMM
Rather than worry about pairing wine with your food, why V’LOUNGE GENTLEMAN’S CLUB
not choose the plonk first and match your food with that? On any night of the week, this atmospherically lit
Taking its name from the humble sommelier, several of vaulted brick basement club provides a memorable
whom have selected over 350 wines – the biggest range in experience. With a glass of delectable whiskey in hand
Lithuania, apparently – Somm is a tapas-style bar where we and either a cigar or shisha pipe, sit back and enjoy the
partook of Irish beef tartare aged for 48 days with a couple exotic show. No need to use a taxi to get there, as it’s a
of intense glasses of Austrian wine with a surprise finish. few short steps from the cathedral.QGedimino 2, tel.
QPylimo 21, tel. (+370) 68 46 46 22, www.somm.lt. Open (+370) 67 79 82 97. Open 21:00 - 07:00.
15:00 - 24:00. Closed Sun.

facebook.com/VilniusInYourPocket Summer 2018 53


Sightseeing

Castle Hill | Žydrūnė Ulinskaitė

The Lithuanian capital’s first period of growth took place GEDIMINAS CASTLE & MUSEUM (GEDIMINO
immediately south of today’s Cathedral Square, eventually PILIS IR MUZIEJUS)
becoming the toothsome jumble of Baroque, Gothic, Dating from the 13th century, the castle was rebuilt by
Neoclassical and Renaissance architecture now known as Grand Duke Vytautas after a major fire in 1419. By the
Old Town. Although most people flock to the city to visit this early 1600s it was being used as a prison for disobedient
undeniable gem, there are plenty of other things to see when members of the ruling classes, but during the chaotic 1655-
in town, from the very Lithuanian eccentricities encountered 61 Russian occupation the towers and defensive walls were
over the imaginary border in the self-styled Republic of almost completely destroyed, with partial restoration
Užupis to the few remaining relics of a once thriving Jewish work beginning as late as 1930, by the then-occupying
community to the occasional Soviet-era masterpiece. Poles. Inside the tower itself find models of the structure
as it appeared in the 14th and 18th centuries plus other
bits and pieces on the building’s history and knights in
ESSENTIAL VILNIUS dented armour. The views from the hill and from the top of
GATES OF DAWN (AUŠROS VARTAI) the castle are the ideal start to a tour of the city. The walk
Completed in 1522, the Gates of Dawn is the only up is a bit of a struggle for many, but there are benches
remaining gate from the city’s original defensive walls. As thoughtfully provided along the way.QJ‑8, Castle Hill, tel.
was common at the time, an image of the Virgin Mary was (+370) 52 61 74 53, www.lnm.lt/en/gediminas-castle-
placed above all gates to protect the city, and the story of tower/. Open 10:00 - 21:00. €5/2. J
the Gates of Dawn starts from this simple historic fact. The
current image, known as The Blessed Virgin Mary Mother
of Mercy, was painted on eight pieces of oak in around
1630 by an unknown artist, was embellished with gold
and silver about 40 years after that, was housed inside
a purpose-built chapel above the gate in 1706 and is
believed to have magical healing powers. Interestingly, the
site is revered by both the Catholic and Orthodox faiths
and is such an important part of the city’s cultural heritage
that it remained open throughout the Soviet occupation.
The chapel is open to the public and is accessed via a
small door on the left as you’re walking up the hill.QJ‑11,
Aušros Vartų 14, tel. (+370) 52 12 35 13. Open 06:00 -
19:00, Mass 09:00 (Lithuanian), 10:00 (Polish), Sun 09:30
(Lithuanian). J Gates of Dawn Lila Jarvis

54 Vilnius In Your Pocket vilnius.inyourpocket.com


Sightseeing
VILNIUS CATHEDRAL & THE GRAND DUKES’ PALACE
CATHEDRAL-BASILICA OF ST. STANISLAUS & PALACE OF THE GRAND DUKES OF LITHUANIA
ST. LADISLAUS (VILNIAUS ŠV. STANISLOVO IR (LIETUVOS DIDŽIOSIOS KUNIGAIKŠTYSTĖS
ŠV. VLADISLOVO ARKIKATEDRA BAZILIKA) VALDOVŲ RŪMAI)
The most important Catholic building in Lithuania, The Palace of the Grand Dukes of Lithuania is at the
Vilnius Cathedral as it’s more commonly known was first centre of the historical and cultural heritage of the
built in 1251 by newly converted Grand Duke Mindaugas early Lithuanian state, the Grand Duchy of Lithuania
on the site of a pagan temple. Returned to pagan use (13th-18th c.), and its rulers. The original Palace
after Mindaugas’ death in 1263, it was given back to was brought to the ground 200 years ago, but its
the Catholic Church on the country’s official conversion reconstruction became one of the most important
to Christianity in 1387. The building that now stands in accents of Lithuania’s Millennium Programme in 2009.
its place has little to do with the original structure. The The reconstructed palace is a symbol of Lithuania’s
current building dates to around 1419, with countless longstanding statehood, reflecting the twists and turns
modifications and additions made after that. The Neo- of the state’s and the nation’s destiny in history, as well
Classical form is largely down to Lithuania’s first true as its European ties.
architect, Laurynas Stuoka Gucevičius (Pol. Wawrzyniec Visitors will discover the most important historical facts
Gucewicz, 1753-98). The rather plain nave betrays eleven about Lithuania and how common rulers reigning in
chapels, among them the must-see High Baroque Lithuania, Poland, Sweden and other countries resided
Chapel of St. Casimir (1458-84), named after Lithuania’s here and received envoys from Turkey, Persia, Spain,
patron saint. Built in 1636 to house his remains, the Italy and many European countries. The expositions
chapel is one of the country’s national treasures. On the present the surviving authentic ruins and unique
roof of the cathedral, the three statues of Sts. Stanislaus, archaeological finds as well as rich Gothic, Renaissance
Helena and Casimir are 1997 copies of the 18th-century and Baroque art collections, which reflect the artistic
originals which were destroyed by the Soviets. Spending connections between the dukes and Europe’s most
several years as a car repair workshop, the cathedral powerful dynasties and Lithuanian cultural heritage in
was returned to the Catholic Church in 1988 and re- the European context. For guided tours (€22) contact
consecrated in 1989. The 57-metre free-standing bell- ekskursijos@valdovurumai.lt.
tower, now a popular meeting place, was originally part QJ‑8, Katedros 4, tel. (+370) 52 62 00 07, www.
of one of the gates in the city’s defensive wall and has valdovurumai.lt/en. Open 10:00 - 18:00, Thu 10:00 -
been added to several times over the centuries.QJ‑8, 20:00, Sun 10:00 - 16:00. Closed Mon, September 1
Katedros 1, tel. (+370) 52 61 11 27, www.katedra.lt. - November 30 open 10:00 - 18:00, Thu 10:00 - 20:00,
Open 07:30 - 19:00, Mass 08:00, 17:30, 18:30, Sun 08:00, Sun 10:00 - 16:00. Closed Mon. Admission €3/1.50.
09:00, 10:00, 11:15, 12:30, 17:30, 18:30 (Latin). J A­T­J

© Vytautas Abramauskas

facebook.com/VilniusInYourPocket Summer 2018 55


Sightseeing
STS. PETER & PAULS’ CHURCH (ŠV. APAŠTALŲ
PETRO IR POVILO BAŽNYČIA)
Believed to have been built on the site of a site of worship
to Milda, the pagan goddess of love, this breathtaking
late Baroque masterpiece was commissioned to celebrate
victory over the Russians in 1668 by Michael Casimir Pac,
the Grand Hetman of the Lithuanian armies, who never
lived to see its completion. Financed by two of Pac’s
cousins and completed under several master craftsmen
including the Polish Jan Zaor and Italian Gianbattista
Frediani, the rather plain façade betrays an interior by
Giovanni Pietro Perti and Giovanni Maria Galli that’s quite
simply out of this world. Containing over 2,000 astonishing
stucco mouldings representing miscellaneous religious
and mythological scenes, of equal magnificence are the
20th-century altar containing a wooden figure of Christ,
Looking up at St Anne’s Žydrūnė Ulinskaitė
Antakalnio Jėzus (Jesus of Antakalnis) which features real
GENOCIDE VICTIMS’ MUSEUM (GENOCIDO human hair brought from Rome in 1700 and the Latvian
AUKŲ MUZIEJUS) chandelier made of brass and glass beads and dating from
The sign outside reads that between 1940 and 1991 1905.QL‑6, Antakalnio 1, tel. (+370) 52 34 02 29, www.
this building housed the representative institutions of petropovilobaznycia.lt/lt_LT/. Open 06:30 - 18:45, Mass
the NKVD and KGB, and, accordingly, the exhibits inside 07:00, 08:30, 17:00 (Polish), 18:00. Sun 07:30, 08:30
relate almost exclusively to the period of oppression and (Polish), 10:00, 11:30, 13:00 (Polish), 18:00.
the so-called genocide of the Lithuanian people by the
Communist regime. This is understandably a must-see VILNIUS UNIVERSITY (VILNIAUS
part of any trip to Vilnius for people wishing to understand UNIVERSITETAS)
this often bleak and violent period in the country’s Established in 1579 and one of the oldest universities in
history. Controversy aside, as a testament to the suffering Eastern Europe, the splendid ensemble that makes up Vilnius
endured by the ethnic Lithuanians, especially under the University’s main campus buildings embraces just about
lunacy of Stalin, the place is essential for any visitor to every major architectural style of the last 400 years. Originally
Vilnius.QG‑8, Aukų 2a, tel. (+370) 52 49 62 64/(+370) 52 belonging to the Catholic Church, the university became a
49 81 56, www.genocid.lt/muziejus. Open 10:00 - 18:00, secular seat of learning in 1773 and has remained so ever
Sun 10:00 - 17:00. Closed Mon, Tue. Admission €4/1. J since. Closed for much of the 19th and the first 18 years of
the 20th century, famous students who studied here include
ST. ANNE’S CHURCH (ŠV. ONOS BAŽNYČIA) the Polish Romantic poets Adam Mickiewicz and Juliusz
Unquestionably one of the city’s most famous landmarks, Słowacki, Lithuanian writer and historian Simonas Daukantas
and quite rightly so, St. Anne’s has a history that starts with and Lithuanian-born Nobel-winning author Czesław Miłosz.
the alleged construction in the 14th century of a wooden As well as housing the oldest library in the country, VU is also
house of worship on this spot in honour of Ona, wife of famed for its lovely courtyards, of which there are either 12
Vytautas the Great. The first historical records of a church or 13 depending on your definition of a courtyard. A map
here date from 1394, but the current Gothic masterpiece can be found at Universiteto 7 explaining where everything
is believed to have been built between 1495 and 1500 to is. QJ/I‑9, Universiteto 7, tel. (+370) 52 19 30 29,
a design by the Bohemian architect Benedikt Rejt (1453- www.muziejus.vu.lt. Open 09:00 - 18:00. Closed Sun.
1534), who is most famous for designing parts of Prague Admission €1.50/0.50. J
Castle. Unlike other historical churches in Vilnius, St.
Anne’s has managed to escape the ravages of time almost
unscathed and is arguably the least changed of them
all. Composed of 33 different styles of brick assembled
into a delicate and intricate whole, the effect is simply
quite stunning. It’s been said the façade incorporates the
Pillars of Gediminas, one of the country’s earliest symbols,
although this is hardly clear from looking at it. The interior
is refreshingly free of ostentation. The separate bell tower
has nothing to do with the original design, being built only
in 1873. Visiting in 1812, Napoleon famously noted that he
wanted to take the building back to Paris on the palm of his
hand.QJ‑9, Maironio 8, www.onosbaznycia.lt. Open 16:30
- 18:30, Sat 11:30 - 18:30, Sun 08:00 - 17:00, Closed Mon,
Mass Tue, Wed, Thu, Fri, Sat 17:30. Sun 09:00, 11:00. J Šv. Kazimiero Street in the Old Town Howard Jarvis

56 Vilnius In Your Pocket vilnius.inyourpocket.com


Sightseeing
CHURCHES
BERNARDINE CHURCH & MONASTERY
(BERNARDINŲ BAŽNYČIA IR VIENUOLYNAS)
Once forming part of the city’s original defensive walls
and constructed on the site of an earlier wooden church
dating from the middle of the 15th century at the behest
of an order of Bernadine monks, the current vast Gothic
church with Baroque and Renaissance additions dates
from the early part of the 16th century onwards. As the old
photographs on display show, the church interior was truly
breathtaking before the Soviet authorities took control of
the building, handing it over to the Vilnius Art Institute who
among other things allegedly incorporated parts of the
interior into the works of art the academy was producing.
Returned to the monks soon after independence, a
mammoth restoration project continues to this day. Current
highlights include 14 magnificent rococo altars and the
oldest known crucifix in the country, dating from the 15th
century. The neighbouring monastery is the oldest part
of the ensemble. Once famed for its extensive library and
independent-minded monks, the monastery was closed
soon after the failed Uprising of 1863 and turned into a
barracks for tsarist troops before falling into the hands of
the city’s Art Academy at the end of WWI. The building now
houses the Vilnius Art Academy.QJ‑9, Maironio 10, tel.
(+370) 61 60 11 59, www.parapija.bernardinai.lt. Open
Mon, Tue 07:30 - 18:00, Wed, Thu, Fri 07:30 - 19:00, Sat
08:30 - 19:00, Sun 08:30 - 18:00, Mon - Fri 07:30, Wed,
Thu, Fri 18:00, Sat 09:00, 18:00, Sun 09:00 (Mass in EVANGELICAL LUTHERAN CHURCH
English), 10:30, 13:00, 17:00. J (EVANGELIKŲ LIUTERONŲ BAŽNYČIA)
Built in 1555, two years after the first German-speaking
CHURCH OF THE HOLY CROSS (ŠV. KRYŽIAUS Lutheran community is said to have arrived in Vilnius, the
BAŽNYČIA) crowning glory of this small gothic and baroque church
On the other side of the Presidential Palace from the is the gorgeous rococo altar, dating from 1741, the work
university, this charming little church’s history dates of Johann Christoph Glaubitz (Jonas Kristupas Glaubicas,
back to 1543 and the building of a chapel on the site to c.1700-67), a Lithuanian of German extraction and the
commemorate the martyrdom of a group of 14th-century city’s foremost architect at the time. Serving as a workshop
Franciscan friars. Slowly added to over the centuries, and a basketball court in the Soviet Union, it was returned
including the attached Bonifratri Monastery, it is now to its congregation in 1991 and has since become the
more-or-less late Baroque in appearance with a few rococo predominant house of worship for the capital’s multi-
flourishes and is the only church in Vilnius converted from denomination, English-speaking Christians. In addition
an ordinary house rather than being purpose-built. The to the weekly English-language worship at 09:30 every
interior is worth having a peep at if the doors aren’t bolted, Sunday, the International Church of Vilnius runs midweek
the most outstanding feature being the painting Holy Bible studies, courses to explore the Christian faith and
Virgin Mother of Snow on the high altar, an image of which various social events.QI‑10, Vokiečių 20, tel. (+370)
appears on a fresco above the entrance. The small square in 52 12 21 25, www.velb.lt/en/. Service Tue, Thu 08:00,
which the church is located also features a stylised, Soviet- Wed 18:00, Fri 17:00, Sun 09:30 (English, Ecumenical
era bust of Laurynas Stuoka-Gucevičius (1753-1798), Protestant), 11:00 (Lithuanian). J
Lithuania’s first serious architect who was responsible for
the contemporary look of the cathedral, the town hall and FRANCISCAN CHURCH (PRANCIŠKONŲ BAŽNYČIA)
other buildings in the city.QI‑9, S. Daukanto 1, tel. (+370) The Franciscan Church, or the Church of the Assumption
67 24 66 48. J of the Blessed Virgin Mary and Franciscan Abbey in Vilnius
to give it its full title, dates from the middle of the 14th
century. Currently a beguiling building site of crumbling
Get the In Your Pocket Gothic and Baroque magnificence, work continues both
inside and out to restore it to its original beauty. QI‑10,
City Essentials App Trakų g. 9 / Pranciškonų g. 1, tel. (+370) 52 61 42 42,
www.pranciskonai.lt. J
facebook.com/VilniusInYourPocket Summer 2018 57
Sightseeing
HOLY TRINITY CHURCH & BASILIAN GATE (ŠV.
TREJYBĖS CERKVĖ IR BAZILIJONŲ VARTAI) Stay up-to-date
Consisting of a church, monastery, belfry and beautiful
rococo gate, with the exception of the latter much of it in a
facebook.com/VilniusInYourPocket
state of hideous disrepair, the Holy Trinity Church originally
dates from 1514 and features elements of Gothic, Baroque ST. CASIMIR’S CHURCH (ŠV. KAZIMIERO
and Neo-Byzantine architecture. Built at the behest of the BAŽNYČIA)
Belarusian national hero Konstantin Ivanovich Ostrozhsky St. Casimir’s in many ways represents a microcosm of
(Konstantinas Ostrogiškis, ca. 1460-1530), the church, Lithuania itself. Founded by the Jesuits and dedicated to
which was extensively altered after a serious fire in the Lithuania’s patron saint Prince Casimir Jagiellon (1458-
middle of the 18th century, belongs to the Uniates or 1484), construction on the mighty building began in
Eastern Catholic Church, a peculiar faith which fuses 1604 and was completed in 1635. Burnt to the ground
together many Orthodox beliefs whilst recognising the just 20 years later when the Russians invaded in 1655,
Pope as God’s representative on Earth. The church is a conflagration visited twice again within the next century
complete mess inside, almost completely empty with the in 1709 and 1749 before the architect, mathematician and
exception of some wonderful, barely visible frescos both astronomer Tomas Žebrauskas (Pol. Thomas Zubrówka,
inside and out. There’s also a small chapel on the right as 1714-1758) restored it to more or less the form it’s seen
you enter. Renovation work is slow. The elaborate, 17.9m in today. Over the centuries the church fell into the hands
gate was built in 1761 to a design by Johann Christoph of the Augustinians, Napoleon’s Grande Armée, the
Glaubitz (Jonas Kristupas Glaubicas, ca. 1700-1767).QJ‑11, Russian Orthodox Church (who significantly altered its
Aušros Vartų 7b, tel. (+370) 52 12 25 78. J appearance), the Lutherans (who used it as the garrison
church for the occupying German Army during WWI)
ORTHODOX CHURCH OF THE APPARITION OF and others, including the Soviets who turned the whole
THE HOLY MOTHER OF GOD (DIEVO MOTINOS place into a museum of atheism no less. Returned to the
IKONOS „ŽENKLAS IŠ DANGAUS“ CERKVĖ) Catholic Church in 1988, the building was consecrated
Built in 1903 and topped with several beautiful Neo- in 1991 and has since undergone a massive renovation
Byzantine cupolas, this is one of the best-loved Russian project, restoring its predominantly Baroque style with
Orthodox churches in Vilnius. Among the numerous icons Gothic and Renaissance touches. Of particular interest
hanging inside are potted plants that make the place feel inside are three late Baroque altars and a recently
alive. Next to the icons are prayers for each saint, but as discovered 17th-century crypt containing dark bas-reliefs
everything in the church is written in Old Slavonic you’ll featuring miscellaneous religious motifs.QJ‑10, Didžioji
need a translator to work them out. The church was fully 34, tel. (+370) 52 12 17 15, www.kazimiero.lt/. Open
restored, inside and out, in 2009.QE‑7, Vytauto 21, tel. 16:30 - 18:30, Sun 08:00 - 14:30, Mass 17:30, Sun 09:00
(+370) 52 75 13 75. Open 09:00 - 16:30. (Russian), 10:30, 12:00. J

The view north from near the Bastion Lila Jarvis

58 Vilnius In Your Pocket vilnius.inyourpocket.com


Sightseeing
ST. NICHOLAS’ CHURCH (ŠV. MIKALOJAUS
BAŽNYČIA)
Pre-dating the country’s conversion to Christianity by
some seven decades, Vilnius’ oldest surviving church
was built in 1320 by German merchant immigrants.
Mentioned for the first time in 1387, the impressive,
classic red brick Gothic exterior remains pretty much as
it looked the day it was finished with the interior having
received numerous changes and additions over the
centuries. During the disputed annexation of the Vilnius
region during the two World Wars, this was the only
church in the city open to the city’s small Lithuanian-
speaking Catholic community.QI‑10, Šv. Mikalojaus
Basilian Gate on Aušros Vartų Street Howard Jarvis
4, tel. (+370) 52 62 30 69, www.mikalojus.lt. Open
13:00 - 18:30, Sun 07:30 - 15:00. Mass 08:00, 18:00,
Sat 09:00, Sun 08:00, 10:00, 14:00. J MONUMENTS
FRANK ZAPPA
STS. JOHNS’ CHURCH (ŠV. JONŲ BAŽNYČIA) Freak out! Deceased rock and roll pervert, part-time classical
Built at the same time as Lithuania’s conversion to composer, father of Moon Unit and all round creative
Christianity in 1387, with numerous alterations through genius Frank Vincent Zappa (1940-93) has had his head
the centuries, this fascinating church with a beautiful immortalised in brass and stuck on a steel pole in a lacklustre
Baroque facade is dedicated to two Johns, the Baptist courtyard just west of the Old Town. Commissioned by a
and the Apostle. It was given to the Jesuits in 1571 by student and created by sculptor Konstantinas Bogdanas
Zygmunt II August (Žygimantas Augustas) but on the (1926-2011), who once churned out Lenins and other
dissolution of the Jesuit Order in 1773, it was handed comrades for the bureaucrats in Moscow, the bust is the
over to the adjoining university. The building now first monument to the man to be erected anywhere in the
contains elements of different architectural styles and world. As Zappa once said, “Without deviation, progress is
boasts an extraordinary and predominantly Gothic impossible.” If you’re wondering what the link is between
interior whose crowning glory is its organ, parts of Vilnius and Frank Zappa, don’t. There isn’t one.QH‑9, K.
which came from Polotsk (Belarus) in 1831. The organ Kalinausko 1. J
is the biggest in country and got a complete overhaul
in stages between 1974 and 2000, so now regular MINDAUGAS
classical concerts can be blasted out on it. The church Taking pride of place outside the National Museum since
is part of the Vilnius University complex and can’t be July 6, 2003, the 750th anniversary of the crowning of
visited separately; you’ll need a ticket from the university the country’s one and only king in 1253, Mindaugas (Pol.
itself. Don’t forget to jump in the lift in the freestanding Mendog, 1200-1263), who’s generally considered to be the
belltower, close to the church entrance, for astounding founder of the Lithuanian state, was a bit of a character to
views over the Old Town.QJ‑9, Šv. Jono 12, tel. (+370) say the least. Clumsy in his personal affairs and switching
52 12 17 15. Open 10:00 - 17:00. Mass Tue, Wed, Thu from paganism to Catholicism and back to paganism to
18:00, Sun 11:00, 13:00. J suit his needs, Mindaugas was eventually assassinated by
his nephew and served as little more than a footnote in
ST. THERESA’S CHURCH (ŠV. TERESĖS BAŽNYČIA) Lithuanian history until he was resurrected by the national
Probably Vilnius’ best surviving example of Early revival movement of the late 19th century. R. Midvikis’
Baroque religious architecture, work on the first granite likeness of the man sees him sitting on his sostas
incarnation of St. Theresa’s was completed in around (throne), from which the Lithuanian language gets its word
1650. Built at the behest and expense of the then for capital, sostinė, literally ‘the place where the throne is’.
Deputy Chancellor Steponas Pacas (Pol. Stefan Pac), QJ‑8, Arsenalo 1. J
the straightforward idea behind its construction was
to create the most beautiful church in the city, a UŽUPIS ANGEL
fact that can clearly be seen by its elaborate façade, The tall pillar in the heart of Vilnius’ breakaway republic
predominantly the work of the Swiss-born Constantino Užupis (where every dog has the right to be a dog) gave
Tencalla (1610-1647) who also worked on St. George’s birth to a long-awaited angel on April 1, 2002, the official
Chapel inside the city’s Cathedral. The spectacular and independence day of the wacky district. After a long and
predominantly rococo interior, much of it added in the sometimes tedious unveiling ceremony the covers were
middle of the 18th century, is a riot of golds and pinks. finally lifted, and in a burst of billowing balloons the
QJ‑11, Aušros Vartų 14, tel. (+370) 52 12 35 13. surprisingly beautiful figure of an angel was revealed,
Open 10.00 - 19.00 , Sun 07:00 - 19:00. Mass 17:00, playing a trumpet and generally being rather awesome.
18:00. Sun 09:00 (Polish), 11:00, 13:00 (Polish), 17:00 The work of local sculptor R. Vilčiauskas, find it at the
(Polish), 18:00. J junction of Užupio and Malūnų.QK‑9, Užupio. J
facebook.com/VilniusInYourPocket Summer 2018 59
Sightseeing
BASTION OF THE VILNIUS DEFENSIVE WALL
MUSEUMS (VILNIAUS GYNYBINĖS SIENOS BASTĖJOS
ADOMAS MICKEVIČIUS MUSEUM EKSPOZICIJA)
The great Romantic poet Adam Mickiewicz wrote his Recently patched up and polished, perhaps a little too
masterpiece Pan Tadeusz with its opening lines, “Oh tastefully, the Bastion is one of the last surviving parts
Lithuania, my country, thou art like good health; I never of the city’s old defences against the Russians and the
knew till now how precious, till I lost thee”. Both Poland Swedes, dating back to the early 16th century. A museum
and Lithuania claim him as their national poet. A student now sits inside the thick, dank walls and though there’s
in Tsarist-occupied Vilnius from 1815, he lived at this not a lot to see, much can be imagined of the history of
apartment, wrote and published his first poems, met his first the structure. It fell into ruin during the 19th century and
love but was from too low a social class to marry her, and was used as a pitiful orphanage and later as a city dump
helped found a secret organisation called the Philomaths and public toilet. Vegetables were stored here under
whose aim was to promote the idea of restoring Polish Soviet rule before it was restored in 1966 and opened as a
independence. He was arrested in 1823 and then banished museum in 1987. An information point beside the Bastion
forever from the city.QJ‑9, Bernardinų 11, tel. (+370) 52 reveals how one of the characteristic gates of the city
79 18 79, www.mb.vu.lt/en/about-library/structure/ once stood close by. .QBokšto 20, tel. (+370) 52 61 21
adomas-mickevicius-museum. Open 10:00 - 17:00, Sat, 49, www.lnm.lt/en/. Open 10:00 - 18:00. Closed Mon.
Sun 10:00 - 14:00. Closed Mon. Admission €1.50/0.70. J Admission €4/2. J

AMBER MUSEUM-GALLERY (GINTARO JONAS MEKAS VISUAL ARTS CENTRE (JONO


MUZIEJUS-GALERIJA) MEKO VIZUALIŲJŲ MENŲ CENTRAS)
Although not officially a museum this two-storey ode Legendary filmmaker Jonas Mekas, famous for
to amber offers explanations in English, German and documenting the New York arts scene of the 1960s and
Lithuanian about the formation, colour, harvesting and 1970s and friend of Lennon, Ono and Warhol, gave his
processing of Baltic Gold. Follow amber’s history through name to this avant-garde and contemporary arts space
a series of ancient rooms in the cellar. Amber polishing in his native Lithuania. Located in the suitably bohemian
demonstrations available upon request. The nice people district of Užupis, some absurdist Fluxus materials may be
here also run the nearby AV17 gallery at Aušros Vartų on show but expect mainly nascent local artists and little
17, which is the only place of its type showing both by Mekas himself. Check mekas.lt for what’s on.QK‑9,
contemporary art and jewellery.QJ‑9, Šv. Mykolo 8, tel. Malūnų 8, tel. +37061478470, www.mekas.lt/. Open
(+370) 52 62 30 92, www.ambergallery.lt. Open 10:00 - 15:00 - 19:00, Sat 12:00 - 17:00, Closed Mon, Sun. J
19:00. Also at Šv. Mykolo 12. Admission free. J
LITHUANIAN CULINARY HISTORY MUSEUM
ARCHAEOLOGY MUSEUM (ARCHEOLOGIJOS (LIETUVOS KULINARINIO PAVELDO MUZIEJUS)
MUZIEJUS) Located in the Old Town, the Museum of Lithuanian
Rather awkward to find hidden away inside a courtyard Culinary Heritage is the first museum of its kind in the
opposite the funicular station, this often overlooked country – and in neighbouring countries – that seeks
collection of clothing, documents and other articles tracing to promote culinary culture and reveal its development
the history and culture of Lithuania from the 13th century through the ages. Besides displays of art, furniture,
to the present is equally interesting for being housed inside valuable plates, tureens, sauce boats, silver-plated dishes
a splendid historical building that once made up part of the and 300-year-old cookbooks, it also hosts exhibitions by
city’s defensive wall. Blind you with its ingenuity it won’t, Lithuanian artists.QBokšto 9, tel. (+370) 52 19 48 49,
but it’s worth 30 minutes of your time.QJ‑8, Arsenalo 3a, www.culinarymuseumvilnius.lt/. Open 09:00 - 18:00.
tel. (+370) 52 62 94 26, www.lnm.lt. Open 10:00 - 18:00. Closed Sat, Sun, Restaurant Open Mon - Fri 11:00 - 19:00
Closed Mon. Admission €2/1. J (+370) 69 85 48 05. €3/1.5 €€. J

Vilnius Cathedral and Bell Tower

60 Vilnius In Your Pocket vilnius.inyourpocket.com


Sightseeing

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LITHUANIAN RAILWAY MUSEUM (LIETUVOS MONEY MUSEUM (PINIGŲ MUZIEJUS)


GELEŽINKELIŲ MUZIEJUS) Featuring five small rooms on two floors celebrating
Recently moving to much larger premises inside the train the history of world and Lithuanian money, despite
station itself, the Lithuanian Railway Museum may not be the inclusion of lots of fancy interactive bits and bobs
to everybody’s taste, but is still worth a visit if you’re in the and plenty of information in English, this relatively
area, or for that matter if you’ve got a while to wait for your new museum’s best attribute is the fact that it’s
train. Made up of three main exhibition halls the museum free to enter. If money’s your hobby then there’s no
charts the history of the railways in Lithuania, looks at some doubt it’s worth a visit. If it isn’t, then it probably isn’t.
of the technical aspects of trains and the tracks they run on, QI‑8, Totorių 2/8, tel. +370 5 2 68 337/(+370) 52
is bursting with old railway-related paraphernalia and also 68 03 37, www.pinigumuziejus.lt/en/. November
has a couple of models that children can play with.QI‑12, 1 - November 31 Open 09:00 - 18:00, Sat 10:00 -
Geležinkelio 16 (Train Station), tel. (+370) 52 69 37 41, 17:00. Closed Mon, Sun. April 1 to October 31
www.litrail.lt. Open 09:00 - 17:00, Sat 09:00 - 16:00. 10:00 -19:00, Sat 11:00 -18:00 Closed Mon, Sun.
Closed Mon, Sun. Admission €1.80/0.80. J Admission free. J

LITHUANIAN THEATRE, MUSIC & CINEMA MUSEUM MUSEUM OF APPLIED ARTS AND DESIGN
(LIETUVOS TEATRO, MUZIKOS IR KINO MUZIEJUS) (TAIKOMOSIOS DAILĖS MUZIEJUS)
Originating in 1926 as a theatre museum and slowly In the 16th century, this was the far northeastern
collecting departments and exhibits over the decades, this corner of the city’s original defensive walls and held
mildly interesting cultural diversion inside an 18th-century one of the region’s largest armouries. Though much
palace and theatre charts the Lithuanian history of the of the Old Arsenal was destroyed during World War II,
three arts. Among several badly ventilated rooms full of segments of the earlier structure including an original
harmoniums, 19th-century theatre posters and recordings gate can still be seen inside. This worthy inclusion into
of famous Lithuanian opera singers are one or two gems the city’s national treasures was rebuilt in 1986. Today
including several displays given over to the life of the it displays Lithuanian and foreign applied art, hosts
actress Unė Babickaitė (aka. Une Baye or Bye, 1897-1961), concerts and, since 2010, has offered a revealing look
who fund a modicum of cinematic success in the United at authentic historical costumes from the fascinating
States in the 1920s.QI‑9, Vilniaus 41, tel. (+370) 52 62 collection of the fashion historian Alexander Vassiliev.
24 06/(+370) 52 31 27 24, www.ltmkm.lt. Open 11:00 - QJ‑8, Arsenalo 3a, tel. (+370) 52 62 80 80, www.ldm.
18:00, Wed 11:00 - 19:00, Sat 11:00 - 16:00. Closed Mon, lt/en/. Open 11:00 - 18:00, Sun 11:00 - 16:00. Closed
Sun. Admission €2/1. Family ticket €3. J Mon. Admission €1.80/0.90. J
facebook.com/VilniusInYourPocket Summer 2018 61
Sightseeing

Church of the Sacred Heart of Jesus Žydrūnė Ulinskaitė


NATIONAL MUSEUM OF LITHUANIA (LIETUVOS
STATUES THAT SPEAK NACIONALINIS MUZIEJUS)
Lithuania’s oldest museum, parts of the collection inside this
The Lithuanian capital has quite a collection of statues intriguing history lesson date back to the 13th century. On
– figures in metal and stone in a clashing array of permanent display are religious and secular items highlighting
styles that reflect the past decades’ changing political the cultural and ethnographic life of the nation, including
passions or, more recently, the strange cultural quirks of recreations of traditional homesteads, clothing, paintings, an
the artists themselves. executioner’s sword and much more. Also to be found are
Now they can talk. Fifteen sculptures dotted in and some of the items unearthed in a mass grave of Napoleonic
around the Old Town can call you up on your phone soldiers discovered in 2001. The museum also puts on
for a chat. The personages will tell you who they are, temporary shows, of which some are truly outstanding. A vital
about things that interest them, what happened to key for unlocking the secrets of the Lithuanian people.QJ‑8,
them while they were alive and the places where Arsenalo 1, tel. (+370) 52 62 94 26, www.lnm.lt/en/. Open
they now find themselves. Inspired by similar projects 10:00 - 18:00. Closed Mon. Admission €2/1. J
in other cities, the Modern Art Centre has animated
these stiff effigies and bulky busts with texts and TELIA NEMUZIEJUS
voices by some of Lithuania’s most prominent writers Legends become reality as you step on board a time
and performers. machine for a jaw-dropping lightning-speed journey
Simply walk up to a statue, connect to the internet through 700 years of Vilnius history. With just a handful of
on your smartphone, go to the website indicated and seats, the ‘non-museum’ presents its gripping 15-minute
swipe your phone on the nearby tag. Choose the story of the city’s tumultuous history every half-an-hour,
language and you’ll get an incoming call. It might be seven days a week. New technologies turn major historical
zany American singer Frank Zappa on the line if you’re events into dynamic, slightly dizzying entertainment that’s
standing next to his statuette at K.Kalinausko Street 1, fun for adults and kids alike. We won’t say anything more,
or mighty medieval Grand Duke Gediminas if you’re just experience it. There’s a gift shop too, selling uniquely
in his shadow on Cathedral Square. Or it might be designed souvenirs such as t-shirts, mugs, bracelets and
20th century French writer Romain Gary calling you the like.QVokiečių 4, tel. (+370) 60 14 47 11, www.
up, if you’re by the statue on the corner of Mindaugo nemuziejus.lt. Open 11:00 - 20:00. A­P­G­W
and J.Basanavičiaus. For more on how it works and to
download a map showing where in Vilnius the talking
sculptures are, go to www.mmcentras.lt. youtube.com/inyourpocket

62 Vilnius In Your Pocket vilnius.inyourpocket.com


Sightseeing
TOY MUSEUM (ŽAISLŲ MUZIEJUS)
Inspired by similar initiatives in Europe and around the
world, this recently opened interactive museum is a
private venture aimed at children of all ages from four to
90. Tracing the history of toys and games from around
the 12th century onwards, the museum features exhibits
including a whirligig dating from the 14th century that was
found during excavation work nearby, teddy bears galore
and some simple wooden vehicles made in Lithuania
during the Soviet period. Indeed, most of the original items

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ard

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on display date from the Soviet period and as such offer a
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ity
fascinating insight into the former everyday lives of children it
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ard
behind the Iron Curtain. Many of the things on display are niu ty C

iu
Vil s Ci

ln
iu
there to be touched, played with and generally mauled, Viln

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making the place a really recommended place for visitors

h
24
72 h
to the city with children in tow who are already fed up with
churches and the like. Not the easiest place to find in the
world, keep an eye out for the sign on the wall along with
a lot of other signs. Entrance is through the door just to the
right.QJ‑8, Šiltadaržio 2, tel. (+370) 60 40 04 49, www.
zaislumuziejus.lt. Open 14:00 - 18:00, Fri 14:00 - 20:00,
Sat, Sun 11:00 - 16:00, Closed Mon. Admission €4/3. J

VYTAUTAS KASIULIS ART MUSEUM (VYTAUTO


KASIULIO DAILĖS MUZIEJUS)
Opened to coincide with Lithuania’s 2013 Presidency of
the Council of the European Union and housed inside
a fine Neoclassical building dating from the early 20th
century, this combined museum and art gallery contains a
permanent collection of colourful, Chagall-esque works by
Vytautas Kasiulis (1918-95) who escaped Lithuania in 1944
for Austria and then Germany and who spent the rest of BERNARDINE GARDEN (SEREIKIŠKIŲ PARK)
his life in Paris. The museum also has space for temporary (BERNARDINŲ SODAS (SEREIKIŠKIŲ PARKAS))
shows and plays host to a range of music concerts.QH‑7, Nestled inside a loop of the Vilnia river just east of the Old
A. Goštauto 1, tel. (+370) 52 61 67 64, www.ldm.lt/en/ Town, this popular spot for walks was once the site of the
vkdm/. Open 11:00 - 18:00, Sun 12:00 - 17:00. Closed city’s late 18th-century botanical gardens. Redesigned
Mon. Admission €1 - 2. Guided tours – 15 €. J and renamed the Youth Park after WWII, it has recently
seen the benefit of investment and is now looking better
WAR MACHINERY AND TRANSPORT MUSEUM than ever. It boasts rather avant-garde fountains, rock
On grounds that have belonged to whatever military has gardens and some of the best childrens’ playgrounds in
been in charge since the 18th century is an impressive the city. Well worth a look.QJ‑8, B. Radvilaitės 6b. Open
outdoor display of fighting vehicles, a few kilometres 07:00 - 22:00. J
east of the Old Town. These include Soviet-era relics from
the Cold War such as T-55 and T-72 tanks, armoured cars,
motorcycles and a boat.QOlandų 21a, tel. (+370) 52 61 VILNIUS CITY CARD
96 06/(+370) 52 69 76 98, fax (+370) 52 69 76 97, www.
muziejai.lt/Index.en.asp. Open 10:00 - 17:00. Closed Available from any Tourist Information Centre in
Mon, Sun. Entrance for free. the city and online via www.vilnius-tourism.lt,
there are two different types of card valid for either
24 hours (€20) or 72 hours (€30), both of which
PARKS & GARDENS come with public transport, with a further 24-hour
Although they like to flee en masse to the countryside version without public transport for just €15. The
during the warmer part of the year, the good people of Vilnius City Card entitles holders to all sorts of deals
Vilnius are also fond of spending time in the city’s many including free museum entry and guided tours as
public green spaces. Regardless of the fact that there’s very well as discounts on a range of things including
little in the way of chaos to get away from, Vilnius’ parks concerts, meals in restaurants and hotel bookings.
and gardens can still provide a welcome relief from the Check the aforementioned website for more detailed
immediate concerns of the 21st century. Here are some of information.
the highlights.
facebook.com/VilniusInYourPocket Summer 2018 63
Sightseeing
EUROPOS PARKAS PLACES OF INTEREST
ALUMNATAS COURTYARD
EUROPOS PARKAS (OPEN AIR MUSEUM OF Built in the style of the Italian Renaissance back in the 17th
THE CENTRE OF EUROPE) century, this is one of the Old Town’s most atmospheric
Founded in 1991 by Lithuanian sculptor Gintaras courtyards, usually with a few outdoor tables from a café in
Karosas, this wildly varied and recommended summer burbling with conversation and clinking glasses.
countryside excursion brings together some big Originally a seminary, the building later became part
names in local and international sculpture including of the university and is now mostly office space. At the
Karosas himself, Polish artist Magdalena Abakanowicz back, a passage leads to a viewpoint of the rear end of the
as well as Dennis Oppenheim and the late Sol Le-Witt Presidential Palace.QUniversiteto 4.
from the United States to create a vision that in the
words of the park’s founder ‘gives artistic significance HILL OF THREE CROSSES (TRIJŲ KRYŽIŲ
to the geographical centre of the European continent’. KALNAS)
Featuring around 100 works by artists from countries Legend has it that long ago seven Franciscan monks were
as diverse as Armenia, Japan and Venezuela, the park crucified here. Originally erected in the 17th century, Stalin
is spread out over 55 hectares of rolling hills and had the crosses removed and buried, and only in 1989 were
woodland and includes static and interactive art as well they rebuilt according to the original plans. The crosses are
as Info Tree, Karosas’ crumbling shrine to propaganda a great symbol of both Lithuanian mourning and hope. An
made up of some 3,000 televisions with a prostrate excellent view of Old Town is also to be found at this spot.
Lenin at its centre. With the addition of a restaurant and QK‑8, T. Kosciuškos g. J
gift shop, the park offers a fun few hours away from
the city for people of all ages. To get there by car, take LITERATŲ STREET (LITERATŲ GATVĖ)
Kalvarijų Street north to the Santariškės roundabout, Inspired by Aidas Marčėnas’s poem Literatų Gatvė about a
turn right towards the Green Lakes (Žalieji Ežerai) and wistful young man drinking and smoking with his friends
follow the signs. Bus N°66 leaves from the Žalgirio on the street of the same name, the highly recommended
stop on Kalvarijų and goes all the way.QJoneikiškės, permanent outdoor gallery on Literatų is dedicated to
10km north of Vilnius, tel. (+370) 52 37 70 77, writers past and present who’ve all left their mark on the
www.europosparkas.lt. Open daily 10:00 - sunset. city. Comprised of small, mixed-media prints, drawings
Admission €9/7/5. and paintings celebrating everyone from Jonas Mekas to
Czesław Miłosz to Romain Gary, the gallery, all the work
of local artists, grew from humble beginnings in 2008 and
now features over 100 superb pieces.QJ‑9, Literatų. J

M. K. ČIURLIONIS’ HOUSE (M. K. ČIURLIONIO


NAMAI)
Although more famous for his painting, Mikalojus
Konstantinas Čiurlionis (1875-1911) has quite a reputation
as a composer. This is the house in which the great man
lived for a short time in a small room that can be visited.
The rest of the building, which during Čiurlionis’ time was
both a family house and a shop, features reproductions
of his paintings and a small concert space which stages
musical productions: check the website to see when the
next performance is.QJ‑10, Savičiaus 11, tel. (+370) 64
65 35 03/(+370) 52 62 24 51, www.mkcnamai.lt. Open
10:00 - 16:00. Closed Sun. J

PLANETARIUM (PLANETARIUMAS)
A classic old school 1960s sci-fi adventure, Vilnius’
dilapidated but charming Planetarium is available for
prearranged tours of 15 people or more, or take your
chance at the times listed below. Featuring a galaxy of
projectors aimed at the inside of the building’s dome, shows
include the fabulously named Venture into Space and Stars
and Music. Find the entrance on Šnipiškių, just south of
Konstitucijos.QH‑6, Konstitucijos 12a, tel. (+370) 61 57
An exhibit by Gintaras Karosas © Europos Parkas
70 54, www.planetarium.lt. Open 10:00 - 16:00, Fri 10:00
- 14:30. Closed Sat, Sun. Admission €3.50/2.50/1.50. J
64 Vilnius In Your Pocket vilnius.inyourpocket.com
Sightseeing
PRESIDENTIAL PALACE (PREZIDENTŪRA) STEBUKLAS
The official residence of the President of Lithuania, this About halfway between the cathedral and the bell tower
gleaming white palace started life in the 14th century as a is the stebuklas, or miracle. Essentially a piece of stone
much smaller structure built at the behest of the city’s first believed to perform wonders and with the word stebuklas
Bishop, Andrzej Jastrzębiec (d.1398). Gaining its Classical written on it, the site marks the spot where one end of the
appearance much later, it remained the home of the cream human chain of some two million protesting Lithuanians,
of the city’s Catholic clergy until the 1795 Partition when Latvians and Estonians stretching the 650km or so to Tallinn
it became the residence of Vilnius’ tsarist governors. Many was formed on August 23, 1989. A symbol of freedom and
illustrious figures have spent a night in the building over hope, stand on the miracle, turn a complete clockwise
the centuries, among them Tsar Alexander I, Napoleon circle and make a wish.QI‑8, Arkikatedros Square. J
Bonaparte and local boy, military giant and Polish national
hero Józef Piłsudski (1867-1935) to name but a few. TOWN HALL (ROTUŠĖ)
After independence in 1991, the structure served several First mentioned in 1503, the Town Hall most likely dates
purposes until assuming its current role in 1997. The from the 15th century, while the present Classical structure
presidential flag can be seen flying over the building when was built at the end of the 18th century. In 1810 the
the president is in residence or in the city. Changing of the governor general ordered that the Town Hall housed
Guard takes place on Sundays at 12:00. From spring to the a theatre, which gave performances on and off until
start of October, at 12:00-18:00, it is possible to enter the 1924. Since then its interior has been a museum. Until
spacious rear courtyard without being part of an excursion. the reestablishment of independence it served as the
QI‑9, S. Daukanto 3, tel. +370 5 266 4011, www.lrp.lt/ Lithuanian Art Museum.QI‑10, Didžioji 31, tel. (+370) 52
en/institution/presidential-palace/20817. Free tours of 61 80 07, www.vilniausrotuse.lt. J
the Presidential Palace take place on Fridays from 16:45,
Sundays and Sundays 09:00 - 14:30. Tours are limited to 25 VILNIUS CATHEDRAL BELL TOWER (VILNIAUS
people. See www.lrp.lt or call tel. (+370) 70 66 40 73. J KATEDROS VARPINĖ)
Closed for more than a decade, the Bell Tower of Vilnius
TELEVISION TOWER (TELEVIZIJOS BOKŠTAS) Cathedral has finally reopened to visitors. One of the city’s
The tallest structure in the country, the 326m Television defining monuments and a popular meeting place, the
Tower was built from reinforced concrete and steel tower originally formed part of the city’s 13th century
between 1974 and 1980 to a design by Lithuanian defensive wall, becoming a belfry in the 16th century. Fifty-
architects. On 13 January 1991, as the disintegration of seven metres tall, it was remodelled and given its current
the USSR reached a frenzied pace and Moscow attempted look in the 19th century. Besides offering fine views from
to retake control of the Lithuanian media, Soviet tanks the top, it hosts an exhibition of bells and also documents
surrounded the tower in an assault that killed 14 unarmed the building’s reconstruction.QI‑8, Katedros 2, tel. (+370)
civilians. The tower has since become a potent symbol. 60 01 20 80, www.bpmuziejus.lt. Open 10:00 - 19:00.
Around it are a few monuments and photographs of those Closed Sun. €4.50/2.50. A­J
who lost their lives and whose names the nearby streets
are now called in honour of. Inside at ground level is the
small Sausio 13-osios ekspozicija (January 13th Exhibition) SIGHTSEEING TOURS
commemorating the brutal events including a copy of the EGLĖ MICKEVIČIENĖ
original Soviet military attack plan, weapons used to beat Explore Vilnius and Lithuania on foot and by car with a
protesters and some affecting photographs. The exhibition freelancer guide and tour leader with 15 years experience.
is free, but the fast ride in the lift to visit the combined Tours available in English, Russian, Lithuanian.Qtel. (+370)
270m restaurant and viewing station isn’t. A taxi from Old 68 36 95 28.
Town costs somewhere in the region of €6. Alternatively,
take trolleybus Nº 16 from the train station to the Televizijos VILNIUS CITY TOUR
Bokštas stop. QSausio 13-osios 10, tel. (+370) 52 52 53 Tours of the historic centre in a number of languages. Also
33, www.tvbokstas.lt. Open 11:00 - 21:00, Fri, Sat 11:00 - audio guides available.QJ‑11, Aušros Vartų 7, tel. (+370)
22:00. Admission €7-9/6. 69 95 40 64, www.vilniuscitytour.com. J­A

The sun sets on the Vilnius skyline Žydrūnė Ulinskaitė

facebook.com/VilniusInYourPocket Summer 2018 65


Jewish Vilnius

Monument to Zemach Shabad (1864-1935; sculptor Romualdas Kvintas), put up on Mėsinių Street in
May 2007 to pay tribute to the famous Jewish doctor’s special care of children | © www.vilnius-tourism.lt

Lithuanian Jews can be traced back seven centuries. The The Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth had become home
classic Lithuanian Jew (Litvak) is known in folklore for a love to the world’s biggest Jewish population. In 1800, at least a
of education, no-nonsense straight-talk and a sharp wit. quarter of a million Jews lived in Lithuania, but by then the
Jews were settled from an early date in Vilna as the capital country had been absorbed into the Russian tsarist empire.
is known in Jewish culture (more precisely Vilne in Yiddish). Hassidism, which strengthened traditional principals of faith
The first historical sources that mention the Jews go back while urging people to enjoy life, was spread in Lithuania
3,300 years to ancient Egypt. Ever since then they have by learned rabbis. But Vilna was also the world capital for
been the victims of – and have fought against – countless traditional Talmudic learning, eventually becoming known
persecutions. They were even blamed for the spread of the as the Jerusalem of Lithuania, or Jerusalem of the North.
plague and leprosy in Europe, prompting thousands to be Towering over the many great Jewish figures the city has
murdered. In 1492, they were expelled from Spain. produced is unquestionably the Vilna Gaon (‘Wiseman’) Elijah
Some Jewish families were attracted to starting a new son of Shlomo Zalman (1720-97), who criticised Hassidism.
life in the Grand Duchy of Lithuania. In 1323, Grand Towns large and small would be connected by wholesale
Duke Gediminas issued an invitation for craftsmen and and retail trade networks, while Jews established
merchants to settle there, stressing the tolerance of local themselves as successful tailors, grocers, furriers, clothiers,
people, and in 1388 under Vytautas the Great, the Duchy’s innkeepers, doctors and herbalists. Academies for young
Jews gained their first charter. Jewish men, yeshivot, in Kaunas, Vilnius, Telšiai and
The charter was confirmed in 1507, by which time more than Panevėžys were internationally renowned.
6,000 Jews were residing in the Grand Duchy. Jews were Life for Jews in the tsarist empire was restrictive, however.
also involved in changing and lending money and the local Throughout the 19th century, a Pale of Settlement was put in
nobility often asked them to maintain their financial affairs. By place in the western borderlands where Jews were allowed to
the mid-16th century, around 30,000 Jews called the Grand settle. Jews were not permitted to move from there into the
Duchy their home. Many more sought sanctuary in Lithuania inner regions of Russia. Jewish boys were forced to conscript
during the bloody Northern Wars and Great Plague of 1708- into the Tsar’s army for a term of 25 years, many of them
11. forced to be baptised. By the outbreak of World War I most
Jewish communities tended to exist fairly independently, Jews were impoverished, with irregular incomes.
with each local community (kahal), made up of rabbis and Jews were instructed to move out of villages, as they were
elders responsible for collecting taxes and maintaining public blamed for alcoholism and dishonesty among local people.
buildings. A council, or Va’ad, kept close relations with the Although Jews made up little over 14% of the population
monarch and made sure the correct taxes were given to the of Lithuania, towns like Ukmergė became more than 50%
state, while steadfastly opposing any anti-Jewish legislation. Jewish. Small towns known as shtetl thrived with dozens of
Jews in other countries could not boast of such autonomy. wooden houses, a wooden synagogue and countless artisans.
66 Vilnius In Your Pocket vilnius.inyourpocket.com
Jewish Vilnius
At the same time, however, Litvaks were known for their CHORAL SYNAGOGUE (CHORALINĖ SINAGOGA)
dedication to science as well as religion, their high intellect Built in a Moorish style in 1903, this is the sole survivor
and individualism. Though the Haskalah tradition which out of more than 100 pre-war Jewish prayer houses in
promoted Jewish assimilation with other cultures was slow Vilnius. The term Choral Synagogue relates to the inclusion
to take hold in Lithuania, communities gradually opened of a choir section, a feature considered by some to be a
up more. Zionism, which looked to the creation of a new revolutionary form of modernisation and assimilation at
state in Palestine, also gained in popularity. In Vilnius, the time it was built.QI‑11, Pylimo 39. J
Kaunas and other cities and towns, traditional rabbis
clashed with progressive cultural activists. At the same JEWISH COMMUNITY OF LITHUANIA (LIETUVOS
time, anti-Semitism increased among Christians, spurred ŽYDŲ BENDRUOMENĖ)
on by rumour and propaganda. This is the country’s primary address for its living Jewish
As the 20th century approached, Jews become renowned people, providing a wide range of cultural, communal
activists, writers, journalists and businessmen. Famous and social services from kindergarten through to senior
Litvaks included the brilliant violinist Yasha Heifetz, the level. Led by the redoubtable Dr. Shimon Alperovich
influential artists Chaim Soutine, Marc Chagall and Jacques (Simonas Alperavičius), legendary for standing up for
Lipchitz and such expressive native-Yiddish writers as Jewish rights however and whenever the community
Abraham Sutzkever, Chaim Grade and Moshe Kulbak. comes under challenge. Along with the two functioning
Between the wars, Vilna – at that time under Polish rule houses of worship, this is where you can meet the
and known as Wilno – was a bustling international centre genuine Jewish locals. The building also houses a youth
of modern Yiddish culture and scholarship. Jews made up club, Jewish Student Union, Union of Former Ghetto and
more than 36% of the city’s population. Yiddish schools, Concentration Camp Inmates and the Union of WWII
newspapers and many other institutions flourished. Vilna Jewish Veterans.QH‑9, Pylimo 4, tel. (+370) 52 61 30
had more than a hundred synagogues and prayer houses. 03, www.lzb.lt. J
Famous libraries such as the Strashun Library had more
than 35,000 rare volumes of literature by the mid-1930s.
Scholars gathered in Berlin in 1925 founded YIVO, the MUSEUMS
Institute for Jewish Research, to be located not in Prague HOLOCAUST EXPOSITION (HOLOKAUSTO
or Warsaw but in Vilna, with branches in Warsaw and New EKSPOZICIJA)
York. Honorary members included Sigmund Freud and The green wooden house reached via a tiny lane up
Albert Einstein. It was between the wars that Vilna truly from Pamėnkalnio Street is the location of the Holocaust
became known as the Jerusalem of Lithuania – the capital Exhibition of the Vilna Gaon State Jewish Museum, to give
of Yiddish culture and learning. its full name. There you will find in-depth information
But this thriving life was cut short. During the Holocaust about the once flourishing culture and history of Lithuania’s
around 95% of Lithuania’s Jews – 200,000 women, children Jews, also known as Litvaks in Yiddish. The tragedy of the
and men – were murdered, the highest percentage Holocaust, in which so much of this community was lost,
in Europe, destroying centuries of Jewish existence is of course also covered in grim detail. The museum is
in Lithuania. Many were killed by local collaborators, not afraid to talk about Lithuanian collaboration in those
including the vast majority of the 80,000 Jewish residents dark times and leaves no aspect of the topic untouched.
who lived in Vilna before the Nazi invasion of June 1941. One unusual section is the Malina, a ghetto hideout video
Sites of mass murder can be found throughout the country. and audio installation in which real diary entries can be
Today, Lithuania’s small Jewish community of three to four experienced. Guided tours available in English, Lithuanian,
thousand makes bold efforts to maintain its extraordinary German and Russian.QH‑8, Pamėnkalnio 12, tel. (+370)
and valuable heritage. 52 62 07 30, www.jmuseum.lt. Open 09:00 - 17:00, Fri
09:00 - 16:00, Sun 10:00 - 16:00. Closed Sat. Admission
€3/1.50. J
JEWISH LIFE
CHABAD LUBAVITCH CENTRE (CHABAD
LUBAVITCH ŽYDŲ RELIGINĖ BENDRUOMENĖ) JEWISH TOURS
This combined community centre and synagogue
is engaged in numerous religious projects aimed at Professional guides lead tours in English and Hebrew
enlightening those who need enlightening and restoring through the Baltics and Belarus.
the spirit and sensibilities of religious Jewish life. Led by
the Boston-born Rabbi Sholom Ber Krinsky, the only truly Yulik Gurevitch Tel. (+370) 699 907 09
resident rabbi in Lithuania over the last decade and a half, Ilya Lempertas Tel. (+370) 687 132 85
Chabad is especially known for its festive Jewish holiday Raya Shapiro Tel. (+370) 600 207 59
celebrations, at which everybody is welcome. It also Justina Petrauskaitė Meškauskienė
supplies visitors with kosher food and needed religious Tel. (+370) 699 540 64
items and services.QJ‑10, Bokšto 19, tel. (+370) 52 16 Daniel Gurevich Tel. (+370) 655 174 91
60 73. J
facebook.com/VilniusInYourPocket Summer 2018 67
Jewish Vilnius
PANERIAI MEMORIAL MUSEUM (PANERIŲ VILNIUS GAON JEWISH STATE MUSEUM
MEMORIALINIS MUZIEJUS) (VALSTYBINIS VILNIAUS GAONO ŽYDŲ
Between July 1941 and July 1944, approximately 70,000 MUZIEJUS)
people of whom over half were Jewish were murdered Established inside a former Jewish theatre, the Centre
at this site by the Nazi Security Police (Gestapo), the SS for Tolerance’s activities include visiting exhibitions
security service and the Vilniaus ypatingasis burys (Vilnius and a permanent exhibition on the upper floors. It is a
Special Squad), in which the majority were Lithuanians. beautifully restored building and is used for art exhibitions,
Find several monuments and the remains of pits where symposiums, conferences, discussions and seminars.
the victims were killed and burned. A tiny museum inside QH‑10, Naugarduko 10/2, tel. (+370) 52 62 96 66, www.
the territory displays copies of archival photographs – not jmuseum.lt. Open 10:00 - 18:00, Fri, Sun 10:00 - 16:00.
recommended for children – and documents, explained in Closed Sat. Admission €3/1.50. J
an irregular mix of languages. Paneriai (Ponar to the Jews,
Ponary to the Poles, Paneriai to the Lithuanians) is about
10km southwest of the Old Town. Catch a Trakai- or Kaunas- STATUES & MEMORIALS
bound train, get off at Paneriai, turn right from the station JEWISH CEMETERY (ŽYDŲ KAPINĖS)
and walk about 800 metres along Agrastu Street. The site By Soviet order, both old Jewish cemeteries were
is at the end of the road. To get there by car, leave Vilnius destroyed after the war. With the help of foreign
via Švitrigailos Street and follow the same road, bearing diplomacy only a few graves of famous people such as
right on Eišiškiu plentas (near the Statoil fuel station) and the Gaon of Vilna were moved here in a concession to
then follow the signs. You also can reach the memorial the community. This new Jewish cemetery was actually
via the city’s western bypass keeping the direction to opened just before the war and nowadays, especially on
Lyda and Minsk. It’s possible to find using a GPS or online Sundays, is a place where Jewish people visit the graves
route planner (e.g. www.google.com/maps). Going by bus of their beloved and you can meet interesting locals. The
is complicated, entailing several changes. For a chilling Gaon’s grave attracts visitors from many countries who
eyewitness account of the events that took place here, leave notes of supplication by the graveside. To the left of
read Kazimierz Sakowicz’s extraordinary book Ponary the entrance is a small office where maps of the cemetery
Diary, 1941-1943, published by Yale, or Martin Winstone’s can be obtained if it’s open. Gravestones are covered
book The Holocaust Sites of Europe: An Historical Guide in the writing of many languages including Yiddish,
published by I B Tauris.QAgrastų 15, tel. (+370) 66 28 95 Lithuanian, Russian, Polish and English. To get there from
75, www.jmuseum.lt. Open 10:00 - 18:00. Closed Mon, By the centre, take bus Nº73 from the Juozo Tumo-Vaižganto
appointment only. Admission free for individual visitors. stop or Nº43 from the Lukiškės bus stop.QB‑2, Sudervės
For groups of up to 30 people €30, up to 15 people €16. Kelias 28.

Jewish Vilna as it once was

68 Vilnius In Your Pocket vilnius.inyourpocket.com


Trakai

Trakai’s gorgeous Island Castle

First mentioned in 1337 by the Teutonic Knights and one of


GETTING TO TRAKAI Lithuania’s former medieval capitals, despite being home
to just 5,400 souls the town of Trakai and the national
Several ludicrously cheap buses leave daily from Vilnius’ park it’s located in provide plenty of opportunities for
bus station, starting before dawn and running until visitors to experience and enjoy this unique part of the
the early evening. The journey time is around 30-40 world. Crowned by a magnificent Gothic castle, Trakai is
minutes. Trakai’s bus station is a shabby concrete shell known for its many different inhabitants both past and
with no facilities. As with the train station it’s also a present, among them Lithuanians, Jews, Poles (who still
ridiculously long way from the main sights, a good make up a substantial percentage of the population and
20-minute walk north up Vytauto. Starting and ending who know the town as Troki), Russians, Tatars and the
around the same time as the buses but running less Lithuanian Karaite, an intriguing, Turkic-speaking offshoot
frequently, trains take about 40 minutes to make the of the larger Judaic Karaite movement who arrived in the
journey and cost next to nothing. Taxis are usually town from the Crimea at the end of the 14th century and
parked outside both the bus and train stations. A trip who are currently teetering on the edge of extinction. Just
to the centre shouldn’t cost more than €2. To reach 28km west of Vilnius, Trakai is both a tempting daytrip and
Trakai by road, take the A1 (E85) road west out of the a destination worthy of further attention thanks to the
city, followed by the A4 in the direction of Druskininkai, aforementioned park.
then the A16 (E28), which takes you the rest of the way.
Driving time depends on traffic but is 20 to 30 minutes.
A taxi, if called in advance, will cost €25-30. CASTLE
Drawing mild comparisons to the vast, red brick Teutonic
BY BUS fortress in the Polish town of Malbork, Trakai Castle (or
BUS STATION Island Castle as it’s also known) may not be as grand as its
QVytauto 90, tel. (+370) 52 85 13 33, www. Germanic cousin, but what it lacks in stature it more than
trakuautobusai.lt. Open 07:00 - 10:00, 12:00 - 20:00. makes up for in location.
Sat splendidly on a diminutive Lake Galvė island at the
BY TRAIN northern end of the town, construction began in the 14th
TRAIN STATION century at the behest of the then ruler of the Grand Duchy
QVilniaus 5, tel. (+370) 70 05 51 11, www.litrail.lt. It of Lithuania Kęstutis, and was completed at the start of the
works 15 minutes before train leaves. 15th century by his son Vytautas the Great. Built as part of
an expansion programme of the neighbouring Peninsular
facebook.com/VilniusInYourPocket Summer 2018 69
Trakai
Castle, its completion came at more or less the same time
its military importance came to an end after the victory of
the combined Polish-Lithuanian armies led by Vytautas
against the Teutonic Order at the Battle of Grunwald
(Lithuanian: Žalgiris) in 1410.
Its second life as a residential palace saw it enter a golden
age, with the castle visited and admired by many foreign
dignitaries including Flemish diplomat Guillebert de
Lannoy (1386-1462), who mentioned it favourably in his
memoirs. The castle’s demise came with the vicious war
with Muscovy in 1655, which saw it seriously damaged and
eventually abandoned. Authentic local cuisine: delicious kibinai at Kybynlar
Attempts to rebuild it have been ongoing since the 19th
century, with wars and border shifts complicating each
new project as it arose. Ironically it was during the Soviet TOURIST INFORMATION
occupation that it was eventually restored to its former TOURIST INFORMATION CENTRE
glory, with work beginning soon after the end of WWII. Staffed by friendly, knowledgeable locals, come here for
Reached by crossing two footbridges and one island, Trakai armloads of brochures and information on cultural events,
Castle is essentially two structures, namely the defensive places to stay and lots more.QKaraimų 41, tel. (+370) 52
outer section and the Ducal Palace. Entrance to the island 85 19 34, www.trakai-visit.lt. Open 09:00 - 18:00. J­W
and lakeshore around the castle is free.
TRAKAI HISTORICAL NATIONAL PARK
CASTLE & TRAKAI HISTORY MUSEUM (TRAKŲ INFORMATION BUREAU (TRAKŲ ISTORINIO
PILIS IR TRAKŲ ISTORIJOS MUZIEJUS) NACIONALINIO PARKO DIREKCIJA)
More like a giant game of snakes and ladders designed They can and will organise excursions inside the
by MC Escher than an enriching cultural experience, the 8,200-hectare park. These are the people to see if you
Trakai History Museum is spread around the castle and need a camping or fishing permit too. They also stock a
linked via a baffling array of higgledy-piggledy wooden number of brochures, postcards, souvenirs and maps. Hard
steps and dark, plunging spiral staircases. The two main to miss, find it located inside the big blue wooden former
collections are to be found inside the western casemates Post Office building.QKaraimų 5, tel. (+370) 52 85 57
(casements) and the Ducal Palace, the former and least 76, www.seniejitrakai.lt. Open 08:00 - 17:00, Fri 08:00 -
interesting made up of 19th-century European glassware, 15:45. Closed Sat, Sun.
ivory walking stick handles and the like and the latter a
collection of items dug up in the vicinity of the castle, a
huge collection of coins, a small exhibition dedicated to
the Karaite and a few life-size models of medieval gents
TRAKAI NATIONAL PARK
with enormous moustaches. More than worth a visit for a
poke around if nothing else.QKęstučio 4, tel. (+370) 52 One of a total of five national parks in Lithuania, at
85 39 46, www.trakaimuziejus.lt. Open 10:00 - 19:00. just 8,200 hectares Trakai Historical National Park is
October 1 - October 31 Open 10:00 - 18:00. Closed Mon. the smallest but by no means the least interesting. Set
November 1 - November 30 Open 09:00 - 17:00. Closed amidst gently rolling hills formed during the last Ice
Mon. Admission €7/3.50. Age about 14,000 years ago, the park contains a total
of 32 lakes, some truly spectacular scenery, one or two
ethnographic sights of particular interest and the town
PLACES OF INTEREST of Trakai itself. A population of 14,000 rosy-faced locals,
UŽUTRAKIS PALACE of whom many remain tied to the land, sprinkle the
In its glory this mansion, built on land formerly occupied park with humanity, giving it an agreeable lived-in feel
by the local Tatar community, belonged to the prominent lacking in many other rural areas in the country.
Tiškevičius (Polish, Tyszkiewicz) family who lived in it until The proud recipient of national park status in 1992,
1939. Built in the 19th century in a neo-Renaissance style, Trakai Historical National Park is on the Unesco World
the palace itself is closed, but the grounds, designed by Heritage tentative list. Things in its favour include its
prominent French landscape gardener Edouard André aforementioned comeliness and the town inside it that
(1840-1911). In summer this is a prime spot for a picnic and gives it its name, woodlands brimming with wildlife,
a stroll around the palace grounds. Catch a passenger ship traditional farmsteads and villages, manor houses,
and say you want to get off at Užutrakis, or rent a rowing heaps of fresh air and a sense of having gone back in
boat. Alternatively, a taxi will set you back somewhere in time. For more information, visit the Trakai Historical
the region of €7.QUžutrakio 17, tel. (+370) 52 85 50 06, National Park Information Bureau in Trakai or browse
www.seniejitrakai.lt. Open 11:00 - 19:00. Closed Mon, the park’s website online at www.seniejitrakai.lt.
Tue. Admission €3/1.5.
70 Vilnius In Your Pocket vilnius.inyourpocket.com
Trakai
FOOD & DRINK
To visit Trakai and not eat kibinai is like going to Japan and
circumventing the noodles. As well as the aforementioned
Karaite speciality, the town can also provide sustenance
from one or two other corners of the world. Don’t expect
too much in the way of fine dining, but do be thankful that
you won’t have to pack sandwiches. What little nightlife
there is in Trakai tends to take place in its restaurants,
although a couple of clubs open for the summer. Consult
inyourpocket.com/trakai, or ask a local.

APVALAUS STALO KLUBAS


A menu of ostentatious fare alongside more traditional
Lithuanian offerings and a splendid view of the castle make
Round Table Club the town’s most sought-after dining
address. Warmer months herald the opening of a charming
glass-clinking terrace by the lake, while the menu embraces
upscale munchies like foie gras, hare siloin and Uruguayan
beef steak. There’s even a champagne menu.QKaraimų
53a, tel. (+370) 69 91 37 69, www.asklubas.lt. Open
12:00 - 22:00. €25. A­P­T­U­B­I­E­S­W

KYBYNLAR
Widely reputed as one of Trakai’s best spots for a food stop,
on colder days enjoy this authentic Karaite eatery’s cosy
and colourful eastern-style sofas upstairs, or in summer
sit on the lakeside terrace. Unique circular crusty pies filled
with fish, lamb or chicken are perfect with a beer, as are the
more typical smaller Cornish pasty-style kibinai. Moroccan-
inspired dishes like tajine are delicious too, as is the fried ACCOMMODATION
trout in grape leaves, though you may have to wait a while
for these. Don’t forget to try the traditional herbal Karaite
liqueur.QKaraimų 29, tel. (+370) 69 80 63 20/(+370) APVALAUS STALO KLUBAS
52 85 51 79, www.kybynlar.lt. Open 11:00 - 21:00, Mon About as feminine as it gets, a night here is like
12:00 - 21:00, Fri, Sat 11:00 - 22:00. €6. A­P­T­U­B­ something straight out of Alice In Wonderland.
S­W Overlooking the fairytale Gothic towers of the Castle,
the interiors appear to have been designed by a
SENOJI KIBININĖ committee of hairdressers and old ladies. If you can
Trakai’s oldest Karaite restaurant churns out endless hot handle the frill of it all, extras include a sauna, two
kibinai pastries with various fillings to an appreciative attached restaurants and wireless internet throughout.
audience packed inside a wooden house like families of This is truly the cream of the crop, and by far the most
sardines. It’s a long way off getting a Michelin star but if expensive option in town.QKaraimų 53a, tel. (+370)
you don’t mind waiting for a table and people treading 52 85 55 95, fax (+370) 52 85 17 60, www.asklubas.
on your toes, bingo, this is a Trakai institution worthy of a lt. €78  - 252. A­P­T­I­L­J­6W ­ ­K­H­D­i
visit.QKaraimų 65, tel. (+370) 52 85 58 65/(+370) 65 97 hhhh
21 32, www.kibinas.lt. Open 10:00 - 23:00, Mon 10:00 -
22:00. €5. A­T­B­S ROWING HOTEL
Part of the local rowing club and school, peep
at superb views of the lake through windows in
WATER ACTIVITIES lodgings redolent of a bygone age. All rooms come
HOLIDAY BOAT with showers, internet connections, minibars and
See the Island Castle from multiple angles on these expensive wallpaper. Guests will be delighted to
comfortable, entertaining and educational trips around learn that as well as the aforementioned rowing and
Lake Galvė. The sightseeing boat also drifts past the sleeping options, Academia Remigum comes with a
Peninsula Castle and Užutrakis Palace. Catering is on board, delightfully petite Rowing Museum.QKaraimų 93a,
or at the restaurant Kybynlar, and there’s an optional open- tel. (+370) 69 81 37 77, www.rowinghotel.com.
air deck, a bar, toilets and heating.Qtel. (+370) 67 55 22 5 rooms. A­P­U­I­L­6­W­H­F­i hhh
00, www.holiday-boat.lt/en/.
facebook.com/VilniusInYourPocket Summer 2018 71
Shopping

Julia Janus, a homegrown fashion success story | © Julia Janus

Shopping in Vilnius is fun, and for certain products


(local beer and alcohol, amber, cigarettes) it’s a hell of a BOOKS
lot cheaper than it is in western Europe. Shops selling International press is best found in the city’s better hotels,
clothing, fashion brands and footwear can be found along some of which offer a pre-ordering service for newspapers
Gedimino, in the Old Town and inside the city’s many malls. and magazines.
The city’s markets are also worth a visit for an authentic
local experience. AKADEMINĖ KNYGA
A wide range of works for lexicographers, plus the usual
dictionaries, reference books and paperback novels. One of
AMBER the better places in town for foreign literature, which you’ll
AMBER MUSEUM-GALLERY find downstairs.QI‑9, Universiteto 4, tel. (+370) 52 66 16
A great little place apt at displaying amber at its best. The 80, www.humanitas.lt. Open 10:00 - 18:00, Sat 10:00 -
knowledgeable and friendly staff speak English, and can 15:00. Closed Sun. A­J
waffle on for hours about the stuff if you want to know
all about it.QJ‑9, Šv. Mykolo 8, tel. (+370) 52 62 30 92, DIDYSIS PEGASAS
www.ambergallery.lt. Open 10:00 - 19:00, Also at Šv. Extended during the summer this is now easily the biggest
Mykolo 12. A­J bookshop in the Baltics. And it’s a proper bookshop too,
with sofas, armchairs and scatter cushions for reading on,
as well as stationery and toys. You’ll do well not to spend
ANTIQUES an entire afternoon (and loads of money) here.QF‑2, Ozo
Unless the item in question is less than 50 years old, some 25 (Akropolis), tel. (+370) 52 38 77 52, www.pegasas.lt.
degree of bureaucracy will almost certainly be required Open 10:00 - 22:00. A
to get antiques out of the country. A reputable antiques
salesperson will assist you with this. If they can’t, you might DRAUGYSTĖ
like to think again about making the purchase. This former largish bookshop recently removed half its
stock and replaced it with a money-spinning café. English-
SENASIS KUPARAS language novels can be counted on one hand, but also
A fine little shop full of beautiful and highly sought-after find a few glossy tomes about Lithuania in English.QI‑8,
antiques, from Russian icons to silverware to furniture. Gedimino 2, tel. (+370) 52 68 50 80, www.vaga.lt. Open
QI‑9, Dominikonų 14, tel. (+370) 52 62 10 24. Open by 09:00 - 21:00, Sat 10:00 - 21:00, Sun 10:00 - 20:00. Also at
appointment. A­J Gedimino 9 (GO9), Pilies 22, Didžioji 27. A­J
72 Vilnius In Your Pocket vilnius.inyourpocket.com
Shopping
BOUTIQUES
PRIVILEGE
A fascinating and eclectic array of local handmade
jewellery, clothes, accessories, bags, interior decor and
more.QVokiečių g. 13, tel. (8-686) 04486, www.privilege.
lt. Open 2:00 - 18:00, Sat 13: - 16:00, Closed Sun. €€.

RAGAINĖ
Found on tiny Skapo Street in the Old Town, this little shop
is a goldmine for Baltic neo-folk, ambient, metal and other
pagan-inspired music on CD, but there’s a whole lot more
here too, like sashes, ceramics, jewellery, leather, bone and Handmade crafts make perfect souvenirs © www.vilnius-tourism.lt
wooden artefacts, linen bags, locally produced incense and
bee products. Clothing and accessories too.QSkapo 3, tel.
(8-678) 86443. Open 12:00 - 19:00. FOOD & DRINK
BIOSALA
SEMPER FEMINA A superior selection of mostly organic food in tins and
A gorgeously arranged boutique of fashions made by local packets plus a few extras like biodegradable washing
designer Jolanta Talaikytė, this is a fantastic little hideaway powder, etc.QI‑9, Vokiečių 13, tel. (+370) 61 06 53 40,
for women.QArklių g.20, tel. (8-686) 01161, www. www.biosala.lt. Open 09:00 - 21:00, Sat, Sun 10:00 -
semperfemina.lt/. Open 11:00 - 19:00, Sat 11:00 - 17:00. 18:00, Also at Konstitucijos 7a (Europa). A­J
Closed Mon, Sun. €€. A­J
DELIKATESAI MAMMA MIA!
A highly recommended deli in the heart of Old Town
FASHION selling a superb range of food and drink, mostly from small
APRANGA producers in Italy, Spain, Portugal, Belgium and Germany.
Broadly, the style of the fashions on display is As well as a shopping space there’s also a small café inside,
fairly conservative.  Service is helpful if you need where coffee and other drinks are served alongside the
it.QKonstitucijos pr. 7A, tel. (+370) 52 75 49 71, aforementioned wonderful food.QI‑10, Stiklių 7, tel.
www.aprangagroup.lt. Open 10:00 - 21:00, Sun 10:00 (+370) 67 39 13 92. Open 09:00 - 22:00. A­S­V­J­W
- 20:00. A

BALDININI THE WHISKY SHOP BY DUOKLĖ ANGELAMS


Clumpy or high-heeled, sturdy or feline, however you A dazzling array of more
like your footwear, it’s here in the local store of the ultra- than 500 whiskies are on
fashionable Milano brand.QVokiečių 11, tel. (+370) 64 09 sale at this Old Town store
33 53, www.baldinini-shop.com. Open 11:00 - 19:00, Sat found down a tiny side-
11:00 - 18:00, Sun 11:00 - 16:00. street from Pilies. Those
from Scotland are on the
BALTAS MIŠKAS shelves furthest from the
‘White Forest’ is a pristine space displaying the finest and door, with smoky ones top-
freshest in Baltic fashion.QŠv. Mikalojaus 13, tel. (+370) left, a fine selection from the
69 31 12 60. Open 11:00 - 19:00, Sat 11:00 - 16:00. Closed misty isles and even some from distilleries that have
Sun. been closed. Whiskies distilled in the rest of the world
can be found closer to the door, including gold medal-
LA PERLA winning Kavalan from Taiwan, Mackmyra from Sweden,
The local outlet of the Italian luxury lifestyle company, with rare Hammer Head from the former Czechoslovakia,
intimate apparel for women and men.QVokiečių 5, tel. the traditional Irish moonshine Poitín, the highly
(+370) 61 01 82 22, www.laperla.com/us/. Open 11:00 original buckwheat whisky Eddu from Bretagne, India’s
- 19:00, Sat 11:00 - 18:00, Sun 11:00 - 16:00. hugely popular Amrut and much more. Prices range
from €15 to almost €5,000 for an exceedingly rare
MOUSTACHE BOUTIQUE 1978 Karuizawa single malt from Japan. The Whisky
At this innovative local design workshop and store, with Shop also sells several rums, gins, tequilas, cognacs,
an entrance from Benediktinių Street, find everything from Armagnac and Calvados. They have a whisky bar next
unique clothes and shoes to cute trinkets and accessories, door too, which is open at night.QPilies 25, tel. (+370)
for women and men.QVilniaus 28, tel. (+370) 65 61 20 67 17 63 08, www.viskiokrautuve.lt/. Open 11:00 -
32, www.moustache.lt/. Open 11:00 - 19:00, Sat 11:00 - 19:00, Sat 11:00 - 14:00, Closed Sun. €€. J
17:00. Closed Sun.
facebook.com/VilniusInYourPocket Summer 2018 73
Shopping
GRAPPERIA
WHAT TO BUY IN VILNIUS The only grapperia in the Baltics stocks beautiful bottles
of the stuff on its shelves, such as Nardini, which has been
AMBER distilling since 1779, and Brunello di Montalcino made
The fossilised sap has from fragrant pomace. If you’re a real connoisseur, buy the
been washing up on handmade Murano glasses, spiked on the inside to split
Lithuania’s sandy shores the aromas. But the shop also takes pride in its unusual
for aeons. If you can’t be gins, like the ones made with lobster, beef or peppers,
bothered gathering tiny and rare foods including Siberian pine cones in honey,
bits of it on the beach (best after choppy weather), truffles, pralines and apricots in vodka.QUžupio 30, www.
chunks are plentiful in the shops. And for something luxfoodanddrinks.lt/apie-mus.
gleaming, millions of years old and sometimes
containing ancient plants and insects, it’s ridiculously LIVINN
cheap. There are shops all the way up Pilies, Didžioji A fine selection of mostly food products, including a
and Aušros Vartų (J-9, J-10, J-11). range of goods from the UK-based Infinity Foods. Among
the selection are Fair Trade organic basmati rice, organic
LINEN peanut butter and large tins of ghee.QGedimino 9, tel.
The deeply ingrained tradition of flax (+370) 65 02 97 18, www.livinn.lt. Open 10:00 - 22:00,
growing is centuries old, and while you Sun 11:00 - 18:00, Also at Saltoniškių 9 (Panorama),
won’t find endless fields of it blowing Upės 9 (VCUP), Ozo 25 (Akropolis), Žirmūnų 64 (Rimi
in the wind these days, the durable Hypermarket). A­J
yarn is still woven into tablecloths,
runners, napkins, chair covers, etc. SAY CHEESE
As clothing, linen easily absorbs A lively little niche near the cathedral sells fresh and
perspiration, making it pleasant to wonderfully scented Dutch, Italian and French cheeses,
wear in summer. Try the shops on Stiklių (I-9, I-10). doubling as a bistro offering grilled cheese sandwiches,
salads and wine. The range changes regularly but you
HONEY might be lucky enough to enjoy green olives marinated
Lithuanian mythology says bees are holy, and the in parmesan, or Gruyère cheese caramels.QGedimino 3A,
buzzy beasts are still revered. To try some honey, head tel. (8-669) 96336, www.say-cheese.lt.
to Bitinėlis (V Šopeno 12, I-11, open Mon-Sat) or find a
stall at Halės Market (I-11, open Tue-Sun). ZENOTECA
A stunning collection of Italian wines mostly from family-
MUSIC owned wineries that don’t distribute their prestigious and
There aren’t many music shops around these days, but unusual vintages, this shop is the work of Užupis resident,
for Lithuanian classical, folk and pop CDs you could try businesswoman and politician Agnė Zuokienė, whose
Rūdninkų knygynas near All Saints’ Church (Rūdninkų passion it is to personally visit the wineries in order to
20, I-11, open daily). bring their precious wares to Vilnius. Browse the biggest
prosecco selection in the country, find rare schioppettino
STARKA & MEAD and limited-edition wines, even try a glass from the wine
There’s lots of local firewater to guzzle yourself or take dispenser. Outside, you might spot the seasoned drinkers of
home as a souvenir from the airport’s Duty Free shops. Užupis smacking their lips as they stare longingly through
Starka is a traditional caramel-coloured, slightly sweet the brightly lit windows.QUžupio g. 25, Užupio g. 25, tel.
vodka made from natural rye spirit. Mead is also a (8-686) 59888, www.zenoteca.lt. Open 12:00 - 20:00, Sat
great souvenir, often packaged in attractive wee 12:00 - 18:00, Closed Sun. €€.
boxes. There are many unique and varied local brands
of strong drinks, and our simple recommendation is
to try as many as possible.

SWEETS
Based in the city of Šiauliai, Rūta has been churning
out the sweet stuff for over 100 years. Though its
founding family was persecuted during the Soviet
era, the firm is now back in family hands and its
chocs, truffles, soufflés and creams are the tastiest
in the land. Rūta has shops at Klaipėdos 1 (H-9), V
Šopeno 6 (I-11) and A Jakšto 5 (H-7), among other
places.
Art Studio of Jonas Bugailiškis (Aušros Vartų 17) Howard Jarvis

76 Vilnius In Your Pocket vilnius.inyourpocket.com


Shopping

GIFTS & SOUVENIRS JEWELLERY


AUKSO AVIS BAREKET
Colourful and inventive textile products by local artists, Silver and gold melt together in fantastic medleys. If you’re
expressing Lithuanian culture through a modern context. looking to propose, the Bareket people are also deep into
QJ‑9, Pilies 38, tel. (+370) 52 61 04 21/(+370) 61 22 05 the diamond business.QG‑7, Vasario 16-osios 16-2, tel.
60. Open 11:00 - 19:00, Sun 11:00 - 17:00. A­J (+370) 52 12 30 87/(+370) 52 12 30 92, www.ebareket.lt.
Open 11:00 - 19:00, Sat 11:00 - 17:00. Closed Sun. A­J
BALTA BALTA
In a sheltered courtyard just off Pilies Street is this BRUZGU
fascinating shop selling handcrafted products created by Nothing smells more heavenly than this. A bright and
local artists out of ecological materials and natural dyes. Silk, busy kitchen sits in an old house on a tiny lane in upper
wool and linen are used to make scarves and hats, cushions Užupis, sweetly scented with all the cake ingredients
and things for the home, clothes for adults and for kids, a you can dream of. Sink into a slice of American-style
gorgeous range of vintage-style soft toys, a swing made cheesecake, luscious chocolate cake, spongy carrot cake –
of thick local wool and much more. There are also some or a filled croissant if you prefer. Extend your walking tour
woollen carpets from Iran, of all places. Natural cosmetics, of Užupis eastwards just for this.QBaltasis skersgatvis 9,
toothpastes and vitamin-packed immunity-boosting ‘bee tel. (+370) 22 07,90 94. Open 10:00 - 19:00, Sat 11:00 -
bread’, all made locally, are also on offer.QJ‑9, Pilies 32, tel. 18:00. A­P­6
(+370) 68 58 04 05, www.baltabalta.com. Open 11:00 -
19:00. Closed Sun. A­T­J
FLOWERS
ETHNO BALTIC SHOP
Find a fabulous array of t-shirts, sweatshirts, gifts and If you’re thinking of giving
souvenirs in a pavilion shop right in the middle of the Old flowers to somebody in
Town, which also sells authentic ethnic art and ancient Lithuania, remember that
Lithuanian symbols with a modern twist. Most of the superstition is rife here and
items are available only at this store in Vilnius and these it’s easy to make a mistake.
include carved wooden figures of historical warriors, There are certain rules that
fantastic birds and angels, black ceramics, beeswax should be adhered to if you
candles and creams, traditional textiles, replicas of wish to keep on the right
medieval jewellery, drinking horns, local soaps and more. side of your sweetheart
The unique designs on the t-shirts, sweatshirts and linen and/or future parents-in-
shirts are based on local archaeological finds, coats of law. First, unless somebody
arms and other national icons. Prices begin at as low as just died, make sure you only give an odd number
€1.QIn front of Pilies 40, tel. (+370) 64 62 84 94. Open of flowers or stems. One will do, but isn’t particularly
11:00 - 19:00. welcomed unless it’s a single red rose for the one you
love. Lilies and chrysanthemums are potent symbols
VILNIUS GIFTS & SOUVENIRS of death and should be left well alone unless heading
The best of Lithuanian design can be experienced at this to the cemetery. If giving flowers to members of the
store in the middle of the Old Town, selling items that older generations avoid yellow ones. Yellow is the
are eye-catching, quirky and inventive, from bags and colour of jealousy, which can be traced back to the
suitcases to amber, clothing, manicure sets and incense Middle Age. Carnations, especially red ones, are
sticks.QVokiečių 4, tel. (+370) 65 90 26 00. Open 11:00 - symbols of the communists.
21:00. €€. A­J
facebook.com/VilniusInYourPocket Summer 2018 77
Shopping
YURGA
A superb range of jewellery for men and women, all of RECORDED MUSIC
it hand-crafted by a talented local designer in a range
of materials. Yurga also makes one-off pieces to order RŪDNINKŲ KNYGYNAS
including engagement and wedding rings as well as a After a design makeover, this cute little music shop is
handsome range of corporate gifts. Buy from one of the now sleek, dark and minimal. The array of magazines
experts in the shop or via the website.QI‑9, Trakų 16, tel. on display has gone, replaced by a tiny cafe where you
(+370) 52 12 28 56, www.yurga.lt. Open 11:00 - 19:00, can get a coffee or a glass of prosecco or whiskey to
Sat 11:00 - 17:00. Closed Sun. A­J sip while you browse the vinyl, CDs and art books. It’s
a fairly mainstream choice, with artists amid the racks
ranging from Serge Gainsbourg to Elvis to The Cure, but
LINEN you never know, you might stumble across something.
Grown in the fields of Lithuania for centuries, flax is a plant QI‑11, Rūdninkų 20, tel. (+370) 52 61 02 66, www.
yielding fibres which, after a laborious process, can be rudninkuknygynas.lt. Open 10:00 - 19:00, Sat 10:00 -
woven together to create a durable, ecological and highly 17:00, Sun 10:00 - 15:00. A­J
valued textile called linen. Clothing made from linen is
especially good for hot weather as its absorbent nature THELONIOUS
keeps the skin cool. Flax seeds, meanwhile, are a healthy Found down steep steps is a goldmine  of second-
source of vitamins, minerals and omega-3 acids. In a typical hand CDs and vinyl, mostly jazz but also a few other
Lithuanian rural household, tablecloths, table runners, gems you won’t find in your typical music store. It
bedding, towels and other objects were often made of also sells old-fashioned hi-fi equipment for those who
linen. These days, linen products and souvenirs in the don’t know their iTunes from their elbows. Devoted to
Vilnius shops are almost as popular as amber. the cause, Thelonious even organises the occasional
concert. See website for more info.QI‑10, Stiklių 12,
LINEN TALES tel. (+370) 52 12 10 76, www.thelonious.lt. Open
Find beautifully designed and crafted linen for bedrooms, 11:00 - 14:00, 15:00 - 19:00, Sat 10:00 - 16:00.
bathrooms, kitchens and much more besides, plus cool Closed Sun. J
and comfortable clothing like shirts and blouses, all
made by Lithuanians to the highest possible standards.
This shop is also an excellent option for visitors searching
for gifts and souvenirs, as well as locals looking for LITHUANIAN COUTURE
something unique for their homes.QI‑10, Stiklių 4, JULIA JANUS
tel. (+370) 62 66 89 61, www.linentales.com. Open A homegrown fashion success story, Julia Janus creates
10:00 - 20:00. Also at Bernardinų 10, Vilnius Airport, clothes and lots more besides. Everything is based on
A4 gate. A­J the Baltic notion of simple, elegant design inspired by
everything the region has to offer. You will find something
LINO NAMAI here you want to buy...QI‑10, Stiklių 7, tel. (+370) 52 61
Linen, the fabric that really breathes, is available here 43 46, www.juliajanus.com. Open 11:00 - 19:00, Sat, Sun
for just about any part of the body or the home. One of 11:00 - 17:00. Also at Konstitucijos 7a (Europa), Verkių 29
the city’s top shops.QJ‑9, Pilies 38, tel. (+370) 52 12 (Parkas Outlet). A­J
23 22, www.siulas.lt. Open 10:00 - 19:00, Sat 10:00
- 18:00, Sun 11:00 - 17:00. Also at Universiteto 10, RAMUNĖS PIEKAUTAITĖS MADOS NAMAI
Vilniaus 12. A­J Put elegance and confidence in a blender, add a hint of
daring and/or fruity nonsense and press the puree button.
Or just pop along here to see the results, courtesy of another
internationally successful local designer.QJ‑10, Didžioji
20, tel. (+370) 61 56 70 93, www.ramunepiekautaite.
com. Open 11:00 - 19:30, Sat 11:00 - 18:00, Sun 11:00 -
16:00. A­J

MARKETS
AKROPOLIO BLUSŲ TURGUS
Catching on to the latest craze to sweep the nation, this
weekly flea market outside the vast Akropolis shopping
centre features a fairly decent selection of stalls selling
everything from old paintings to Soviet memorabilia.
QF‑2, Ozo 25, tel. 1588, www.akropolis.lt. Open 09:00
Outdoor market during a city festival © www.vilnius-tourism.lt - 16:00. Closed Mon, Tue, Wed, Thu, Fri, Sat.
78 Vilnius In Your Pocket vilnius.inyourpocket.com
Shopping
KALVARIJŲ TURGUS
Featuring everything from old ladies selling garlic bulbs
and carrier bags to the occasional bargain goat (cash only),
one of the city’s most endangered species is a must-see
attraction for anyone who wants a taste of what the rest of
the country’s really like. One of the best places in town for
meat, locally-produced honey and cameras manufactured in
the CCCP, also find tropical fish, manbags, Minsk bicycles and
cheap cigarettes from the Roma girls near the main entrance.
QI‑5, Kalvarijų 61, tel. (+370) 69 63 57 18, www.kalvariju-
turgus.lt. Open 07:00 - 16:00. Closed Mon.

UPTOWN BAZAAR
Though it’s yet to find its audience, this incredible open-
plan array of mini-eateries with a hipster vibe is paradise
for any foodie. The plod along busy streets to find it is
absolutely worthwhile as you’re rewarded with a choice of
foods too long to list, which you can combine and eat on
the spot or wrap to take away. There’s everything from hot
wings and artisan pizza to fresh oysters and Catalan olives.
Burgers and tacos are made by locals who spent years in the
US, an Italian sells unusual wines and truffles, a cider expert
offers Pommeau and Calvados, and meats are smoked for
your delectation.QKauno 16, tel. (+370) 65 91 93 42,
www.prodo.lt/uptown-bazaar.html. Open 08:00 - 22:00,
Sat 10:00 - 22:00, Sun 10:00 - 18:00. A­X­B­6­W

VERSLO PARKAS GARIŪNAI


Covering a vast area of 120 hectares (there are some who
say it’s the largest outdoor market in Europe) and attracting
an average 50,000 shoppers every day, Gariūnai sells cars GO9
on one side of the road plus all manner of cheap consumer Looking more fabulous than ever after a careful refit, this little
goods of dubious quality on a truly expansive scale on the mall in the heart of the city is located in a grand building that’s
other. A taxi from a reputable firm costs around €10 to worth a look even if you’re not shopping. It dates from 1948
get there from the city centre. Alternatively, look for the and was once the site of the city’s very first nightclub and, for
minibuses around the train and bus stations with Gariūnai much of the Soviet period, newspaper offices. Besides the
signs on the front.Q4km from Vilnius just off the Kaunas many shops there’s free Wifi throughout and some decent
highway, tel. (+370) 66 97 77 79, www.gariunai.lt. Open dining.QI‑8, Gedimino 9, tel. (+370) 65 59 25 50, www.
05:30 - 14:00, Tue 02:30 - 14:00, Thu 03:00 - 14:00, Sat go9.lt. Open 10:00 - 20:00, Sun 11:00 - 18:00, Rimi 07:00 -
04:30 - 16:00, Sun 05:30 - 16:00. Closed Mon. 22:00, Sat, Sun 09:00 - 22:00. A­P­U­J­W­K

PANORAMA
SHOPPING CENTRES Loads of retail outlets, entertainment spots and restaurants
EUROPA can be found at this airy mall by the Žvėrynas suburb, next
Situated among the skyscrapers of the business district, to the busy road T.Narbuto. Many high-street names are
this  stylish and shapely mall hosts the most sought-after within, plus a top floor of eateries, the country’s first electric
Lithuanian and international brands, plus a range of go-carting centre and smoking rooms by the public toilets.
restaurants. Found a few minutes’ walk from the Radisson QE‑5, Saltoniškių 9, tel. (+370) 52 19 58 11/(+370) 68
Blu Lietuva the high-end premises have a full spectrum of 63 90 60, www.panorama.lt. Shops 10:00 - 21:00, Rimi
men’s and women’s clothing, shoes, accessories and interior Hypermarket 08:00 - 22:00. A­P­X­T­U­L­W­K
design shops. Find such brands as Michael Kors, Wolford,
Stefanel, Twin Set, Laurel, Coccinelle, Grey&White, etc., VCUP
plus a few exclusive men’s stores like Aeronautica Militare, First opened in 1974, this was more-or-less the first modern
Suitsupply, Pierre Cardin and  Strellson. Lithuania’s most indoor shopping area to open in Vilnius. After much
famous fashion designers can also be found here.QH‑6, renovation, today it’s still one of the better places to shop in
Konstitucijos 7a, tel. (+370) 61 69 56 80, www.pceuropa. the city centre. The stores are small but varied, with eating
lt. Open 10:00 - 21:00, Sun 10:00 - 20:00; shops 10:00 - and drinking options and sweeping river views.QH‑6,
21:00, Sun 10:00 - 20:00; Maxima 08:00 - 22:00, Sat 09:00 Upės 9, tel. (+370) 52 73 15 15, www.vcup.lt/en/. Shops
- 22:00, Sun 09:00 - 21:00. A­P­T­U­L­J­W­K 10:00 - 22:00. A­P­U­L­W
facebook.com/VilniusInYourPocket Summer 2018 79
Leisure

Pamper yourself in one of the city’s professional and relaxing spas

Whether it’s relaxation or action, we’ve hand-picked a


bunch of options and stuffed our pages with stuff to do. BIKE RENTAL
CYCLOCITY
CycloCity, a joint initiative between Vilnius municipality
ACTIVE LEISURE and JCDecaux, is aimed at anyone looking to cycle around
UNO PARKS the city. A subscription-based service, it allows users to
Not far from the city centre on the eastern shore of the rent from a stock of over 300 bicycles parked at 37 stations
Neris, Uno offers over 1.5km of tracks up in the trees aimed around the city for any amount of time - just as long as
at everyone from kids to beginners to professional Tarzans. you’ve got enough credit in your account. Subscriptions are
Each route comes with ziplines for aerial flights, plus there’s available online at www.cyclocity.lt/en/ and cost €19.90 a
a 16m swing for the completely insane and an aerial year. There are number of deals and the option to use your
runway across the river. The place is hidden from the road Vilniečio Kortelė public transport card.QI‑8, tel. (+370) 80
with barely any signposts.QLizdeikos, tel. (+370) 60 23 02 20 08, www.en.cyclocity.lt. A
23 66, www.unoparks.lt. Open 10:00 - 21:30.
VILNIUS BIKE TOURS & RENTAL - VELOCITY VILNIUS
A local organisation that rents bicycles, organises city tours by
AMUSEMENT PARKS bike, provides maps and information about cycling in the city
DINO PRAMOGŲ PARKAS and organises free cycling events. The daily (except Sundays)
Who said dinosaurs are extinct? The Dino Entertainment tour All Sides of Vilnius begins at 11:00 at the bicycle rental at
Park near Vilnius, on the Vilnius-Kaunas highway 23km Pylimo 31.QI‑10, Pylimo 31, tel. (+370) 67 41 21 23, www.
out of town and close to Senoji Karališkoji Kibininė, velovilnius.lt. Open 10:00 - 20:00. A­J
boasts an unexpected abundance of these magnificent
beasts. Among the impressive ‘dinosaurs’ on display are
attractions for young and old including pavilions, carousels, BOWLING & BILLIARDS
trampolines and even paintball! For the best experience, BOULINGO KLUBAS
take a picnic blanket with you and some marinated meat as Complete with Lithuanian dishes and beer, the six lanes
you can also rent a grill here. Get ready for a full day of fun squeezed next to each other allow for much drunken
and active outdoor time with the whole family.QHighway bowling.QF‑8, J. Jasinskio 16, tel. (+370) 52 49 66 00,
A1 Vilnius - Kaunas, next to Karališkoji Senoji Kibininė, www.boulingoklubas.lt. Open 11:00 - 23:00, Thu 11:00
tel. (+370) 60 59 84 62, www.dinopramoguparkas.lt/ - 24:00, Fri 11:00 - 02:00, Sat 12:00 - 02:00, Sun 12:00 -
en/. Open 10:00 - 20:00. Closed Mon, Tue, Wed, Thu, Fri. 22:00. A­P­W
80 Vilnius In Your Pocket vilnius.inyourpocket.com
Leisure
FUKSAS
Use any of the 12 high-quality pool tables, including one EXPLORE LITHUANIA
for Russian pool, and make good use of the well-stocked
bar. Or just enjoy a drink.QGedimino 28/2, tel. (+370) 52 Besides alluring Trakai (see separate section) and Lithu-
60 89 26, www.fuksas.lt/en.php. Open 11:00 - 24:00, Thu ania’s other buzzing cities like coastal Klaipėda and
11:00 - 01:00, Fri, Sat 11:00 - 03:00, Sun 13:00 - 24:00. lively Kaunas, both of which we publish guides about
once a year, the country is crammed with castles and
manors, ancient forests, pretty towns and attractive
ESCAPE ROOMS landscapes, diverting at any time of the year. Here are
DECODE ROOM some tips.
At this clever escape room next to the train station, collect
the clues in rooms set up to resemble a spy’s Moscow SPA RESORTS
apartment and solve the puzzle. Teams of two to six players As fun-filled as it is hard
work best, ideally four, with tweens and teens welcome to pronounce, Druski-
too.QGeležinkelio 6, www.decoderoom.lt/. Open 12:00 ninkai is famed for its
- 21:00. €€. A­T mineral-packed muds
and waters and also
ILLUMINATI ROOM boasts a waterpark, mas-
At this escape room requiring equal parts logic and sive indoor ski slope, So-
imagination in order to make it out, work through a variety viet sculpture park and countless spa hotels. Far quieter
of clues and challenges for you and your team to find the is Birštonas, a relaxed riverside town with spas and old-
answers in less than 60 minutes. Go!QGeležinkelio 6, fashioned sanatoriums.
tel. (+370) 61 55 45 58, www.illuminatiroom.lt/apie-
illuminati-room/. Open 10:00 - 22:00. ŠIAULIAI AND THE HILL OF CROSSES
Ever since the local pa-
LABYRINTHUS gan Samogitians beat the
Enter a dark door concealed within the concrete maze of Catholic Sword Brothers
the city’s western suburbs and you will be plunged into an at the Battle of the Sun
escape game from which you may never emerge. Teams lead in 1236, Šiauliai has been
themselves through scary, dimly lighted corridors and tight at the heart of Lithuania.
passages, interpreting messages to open the right doors. Today it has quirky muse-
One game is for kids aged 12 to 16, another for those aged 14 ums to cats, bicycles and
and up. Website in Lithuanian only.QLaisvės 60, tel. (+370) cameras, but the real draw is the nearby Hill of Crosses,
68 78 21 18, www.labyrinthus.lt/en/. Open 11:00 - 22:00. a mystifying miracle of faith defying decades of op-
pression, with thousands of crosses ‘growing’ eerily on
a hillock.
FITNESS & GYMS
FORUM SPORTS CLUB CURONIAN SPIT
Enjoy a spacious gym, group fitness activities, an outdoor An extraordinary natural
sports terrace, table tennis area, ‘gong therapy’ and a kids’ coastal phenomenon,
club. Best of all, there’s an Olympic size (25m) three-track the spit is a narrow sliver
swimming pool with cascades, Jacuzzis and separate of sand and pines with
spa areas for men and women with saunas, steam fishing villages, cycle
baths, infrared baths, fresh towels and local herbal tea. lanes, a Hill of Witches,
QG‑5, Konstitucijos 26, tel. (+370) 61 63 60 13, www. amber washing up on
forumfitness.lt. Open 06:30 - 22:30, Sat, Sun 08:00 - the beaches, and dunes
21:00. A­P­W­C­D­F towering like cliffs above the water.

STIMULUS NATIONAL PARKS


Stimulus is an almost exclusively women-only venue Lithuania’s protected
(exceptions are few and far between) offering a range of national parks include
regimes, therapies, courses and other things aimed at lake-strewn Aukštaitija,
achieving a strong and healthy body and mind combined Žemaitija with its myths,
with inner balance for a harmonious lifestyle. It focuses on legends and Soviet un-
Callanetics but also offers Pilates, yoga, balance training, derground nuclear missile
modern dance exercises and more, all overseen by silo, and Dzūkija’s thick
professionals and the majority of it available in English. pine forests, thatched
QH‑6, Konstitucijos 6, tel. (+370) 64 52 84 16, www. farmsteads and undisturbed, swampy Čepkeliai Marsh.
stimulus.lt. Also at Aguonų 12. P­J­W
facebook.com/VilniusInYourPocket Summer 2018 81
Leisure
GOLF
EUROPOS CENTRO GOLFO KLUBAS
An international standard 6km par 72 course, 26km
from Vilnius. Equipment rental and instruction available.
QMolėtų pl. 26 km (Girijos), tel. (+370) 61 62 63 66,
www.golfclub.lt. Open 09:00 - 21:00. A­W­K

ILLUSION ROOM
ILLUSION ROOM (VILNIL. ILIUZIJŲ MUZIEJUS)
Kids, teens and adults alike are bound to have fun at this
museum of illusions in the Old Town, a first for the Baltics. To
say much more would spoil the surprise. Amazing, intriguing, Take a break at a day spa
friendly and highly recommended.QVokiečių 6, tel. (+370)
67 22 54 14, www.vilnil.lt/en/. Open 10:00 - 21:00. €. T­J
SUPER SEGWAY
These extraordinary if not particularly alluring machines are
KARAOKE available to buy and to rent.QI‑9, Vilniaus 45, tel. (+370)
SING 61 23 44 44, www.supersegway.com/en/. Open 11:00 -
The best karaoke bar in the land has more than 40,000 18:00. A­J
songs, a great bar and separate stylish rooms for pop (the
biggest), disco, rock, jazz and classics. Rent the rooms by
the hour, with packages available, plus optional vocal RACQUET SPORTS
effects synthesizer.QGedimino 27, tel. (+370) 69 87 75 TENISO PASAULIS
53, www.singkaraoke.lt/index.php. Open 18:00 - 02:00. From around €15 to €28 an hour depending on when you
Closed Mon, Tue, Wed, Sun. want to play.QB‑3, Ąžuolyno 7, tel. (+370) 65 50 40 50,
www.sebarena.lt/en. Open 07:00 - 22:00, Sat, Sun 08:00
- 22:00. A
KAYAKING
PIPIRO BAIDARĖS
See Vilnius from unique and memorable angles by SAUNAS
kayaking down the Neris or the faster, trickier Vilnelė. These RADISSON BLU ASTORIJA
guys drive you to a rural point upriver and then down you A gleaming facility tucked away under one of the city’s
paddle, under bridges and through the city centre.Qtel. finest hotels. Sauna, pool, spa bath and some fitness kit are
(+370) 68 33 89 35, www.pipirobaidares.lt/english/. all present. You can watch people swimming while you’re
on the treadmill. And then join them.QJ‑10, Didžioji 35/2,
tel. (+370) 52 12 01 10, fax (+370) 52 12 17 62, www.
ON WHEELS radissonblu.com/hotel-vilnius. A­J
PLYTINĖS KARTODROMAS
This go-cart track offers speed, mayhem, danger, so it’s just THE NARUTIS HOTEL – PREFERRED BOUTIQUE
like the rest of Lithuania’s road network, but with smaller There’s a sauna, steam room and a modest pool with spa
cars and more fun.QPlytinės 27, tel. (+370) 69 95 67 04, bath. And a nice little fountain. A hidden treat on the main
www.kartodromas.lt. Open 13:00 - 20:00, Sat, Sun 11:00 tourist promenade of Old Town.QJ‑9, Pilies 24, tel. (+370)
- 20:00. A 52 12 28 94, www.narutis.com. A­J

82 Vilnius In Your Pocket vilnius.inyourpocket.com


Leisure
SPA & BEAUTY
AZIA SPA (ODMINIŲ)
The second Azia Spa massage house, settled into a location
directly across from Cathedral Square, is distinguished by its
more spacious premises and unique, eye-catching oriental
design. Massive stone statues of goddesses, authentic
wooden furniture, original frescoes with mystical creatures on
the walls – and that’s only part of the exotic world of faraway
East Asia you can find here. Enjoy this real oasis of serenity
and bliss in the middle of Vilnius city centre.QOdminių 3,
tel. (+370) 52 53 13 13, www.aziaspa.lt/. Open 11:00 -
21:00, Sat 10:00 - 22:00, Sun 10:00 - 21:00. J

AZIA SPA (ŠV. MIKALOJAUS)


Offering a full menu of eastern-style massages with a
Buddhist philosophy, Azia Spa also provides the pleasure
of exotic facials, body scrubs, wraps and more. Pressure-
point massages and herbal baths add to the experience,
and special pampering massages for two are also available.
QI‑10, Šv. Mikalojaus 5, tel. (+370) 52 44 46 46/(+370)
64 40 30 00, www.aziaspa.lt. Open 11:00 - 21:00, Sat
10:00 - 22:00, Sun 10:00 - 21:00. A­J­W

INDIGO SPA
A tastefully decorous boudoir adorned in elegant 19th
century decadence, with sumptuous furniture, paintings
and plump cushions, virtually everything bathed in a
deep red glow, Indigo Spa immediately puts its mostly
gentlemen clients at ease with very individual attention.
The delicate touch of exclusivity extends to the salon’s
choice of massages, all of which, so we hear, are designed
for ultimate relaxation.QKlaipėdos 2, tel. (+370) 64 22 22
00/(+370) 64 44 32 22, www.monsier.lt. Open 10:00 -
22:00, Sat 11:00 - 23:00, Sun 12:00 - 22:00. A­P­J

VIRTUAL REALITY ROOMS


VR CAFE
Decoded, the name of this café implies virtual reality.
Found in the G9 shopping centre on Gedimino, Vilnius’
central street, it’s clearly a space for people who hate those
uncomfortable moments of silence during an extended
session staring into each other’s eyes. At VR Café, you can
have some coffee and also try at least one of seven virtual
reality rooms.QGedimino 9, tel. (+370) 68 83 60 73,
www.vrcafe.lt. Open 12:00 - 21:00, Sat, Sun 11:00 - 21:00.

WATER ACTIVITIES
VILNIUS KATAMARAN
Rent a luxury catamaran with an experienced captain to sail
the calm waters of the River Neris, to get a fresh perspective
of the city. It’s possible to order catering and drinks, and by
night adjust the mood lighting to different colours. There’s
a covered lower deck as well as an open-air upper deck. A
truly memorable experience for friends, family or corporate
groups.QH‑6, Upės 5, tel. (+370) 61 91 71 57, www.
vilnius-katamaran.lt.
facebook.com/VilniusInYourPocket Summer 2018 83
Health & Useful Addresses
A complete directory of useful contacts in Vilnius can
be found on our website at  inyourpocket.com/vilnius/ DENTISTS
directory. ODONTIKA
At this professionally run clinic in Užupis you can get
a check-up for €10, cleaning for €50-65, whitening for
CLEANERS €10 per tooth, fillings at €40-140 each, extraction for €50-
JOGLĖ 80 or an  implant for €550 per tooth.QK‑9, Krivių 5, tel.
The full range of dry cleaning and laundry services.QF‑8, (+370) 61 44 20 98, www.odontika.com. Open 09:00 -
J. Jasinskio 16 (entrance from A. Goštauto), tel. (+370) 20:00. Closed Sat, Sun. A­J
52 64 91 64/(+370) 62 01 11 77, www.jogle.lt/?lng=EN.
Open 08:00 - 20:00, Sat 09:00 - 16:00. Closed Sun, ODONTOLOGIJOS KLINIKA
Also at Gedimino 9, Mindaugo 11, Ozo 25 (Akropolis), Get a check-up for around €15 and then a choice
Konstitucijos 7a (Europa), Saltoniškių 9 (Panorama). A of cleaning, laser-whitening, fillings, extraction
or  implants can follow.QI‑9, Universiteto 2/18,
tel. (+370) 52 31 29 52/(+370) 52 31 29 53, www.
COMPUTER REPAIR odontologijosklinika.lt. Open 08:00 - 20:00. Closed
MATRIX Sat, Sun. A­J
Hard drive recovery et al.QF‑10, Vytenio 10, tel. (+370) 52
13 45 74, www.matrix.lt. Open 09:00 - 19:00, Sat 10:00 -
15:00. Closed Sun. A EUROPEAN UNION
EUROPEAN INFORMATION CENTRE
The local representation of the European Commission, the
CONSUMER RIGHTS European Institute for Gender Equality and the European
EUROPEAN CONSUMER CENTRE Parliament Information Office can also be found at this
A free service, the European Consumer Centre’s staff in address.QH‑8, Gedimino 16, tel. (+370) 52 31 31 83,
Lithuania are on hand to deal with any consumer issues www.ec.europa.eu/lietuva/eu_information_network/
people living within the EU have when in Lithuania.QI‑8, eic/index_lt.htm. Open 10:00 - 18:00, Fri 10:00 - 17:00.
Odminių 12, tel. (+370) 52 65 03 68, www.ecc.lt. Open Closed Sat, Sun. J
08:00 - 12:00, 12:45 - 17:00, Fri 08:00 - 12:00, 12:45 -
15:45. Closed Sat, Sun. J
FOREIGN EMBASSIES
BELARUS
LGBT QF‑10, Mindaugo 13, tel. (+370) 52 66 22 00/(+370) 52
66 22 11, fax (+370) 52 66 22 12, www.lithuania.mfa.
The websites www.lgl.lt/ gov.by/en/. Open 08:30 - 12:00, 13:00 - 17:30. Closed
en and www.gayline.lt have Sat, Sun.
information about LGBT
organisations and events in CANADA
Lithuania, plus community QH‑8, Jogailos 4, tel. (+370) 52 49 09 50, fax (+370) 52
news, chat rooms and personal ads. Lithuania has a 49 78 65, www.lietuva.gc.ca. Open 08:30 - 17:00. Closed
poor record of limited rights for members of the LGBT Sat, Sun, Open by appointment only. J
community, but attitudes are changing. The Baltic
Pride parade takes place each June, rotating between GERMANY
the Baltic capitals and attracting a growing crowd of QF‑9, Z. Sierakausko 24, tel. (+370) 52 10 64 00, fax
several thousand people. The next one in Vilnius is (+370) 52 10 64 46, www.vilnius.diplo.de. Open 08:00 -
scheduled for 2019. 16:30, Fri 08:00 - 15:00. Closed Sat, Sun, Open for visitors
Lithuania’s lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender rights 09:00 - 12:00. Closet Sat, Sun.
association LGL is the country’s only NGO exclusively
representing the interests of the local LGBT community. IRELAND
Working for more than 20 years for advocacy, awareness Open for visitors 10:00 -12:00; 14:00 - 16:00. Closed Sat, Sun.
and community building, it pushes for progress in the QI‑8, Gedimino 1, tel. (+370) 52 62 94 60, fax (+370) 52
field of LGBT rights. The LGL office is located at Pylimo 62 94 62, www.embassyofireland.lt. J
21, which is also home to Lithuania’s only LGBT centre,
open to all well-meaning visitors wanting to know ISRAEL
more about LGBT rights here. Call ahead to let them QH‑6, Konstitucijos 7 (Europa Business Center), tel.
know you’re coming. The LGL website above has more (+370) 52 50 25 00, fax (+370) 52 50 25 55, www.
info in English on current events.QH‑10, Pylimo 21, embassies.gov.il/vilnius/Pages/default.aspx. Open
tel. (+370) 52 61 03 14, www.lgl.lt/en/. 09:30 - 17:30, Fri 10:00 - 15:00. Closed Sat, Sun, By
appointment.
84 Vilnius In Your Pocket vilnius.inyourpocket.com
Health & Useful Addresses
RUSSIA
QC‑6, Latvių 53, tel. (+370) 52 72 38 93, www.lithuania.
mid.ru. Open 08:00 - 12:00, 13:00 - 17:00. Closed Sat,
Sun. Open for visitors 08:15 - 11.50, 13:15 - 15:50 Mon, The best Vilnius
Tue, Thu, Fri. Closed Wed, Sat, Sun.

UK
has to offer
QL‑6, Antakalnio 2, tel. (+370) 52 46 29 00, fax (+370)
52 46 29 01, www.gov.uk/government/world/lithuania.
Open 08:30 - 16:45, Fri 08:30 - 15:30. Closed Sat, Sun,
in one great app
Open for visitors 09:00 - 11:00 Mon, Tue, Thu, Fri. Closed
Wed, Sat, Sun.

USA
QG‑9, Akmenų 6, tel. (+370) 52 66 55 00, fax (+370)
52 66 55 10, www.vilnius.usembassy.gov. Open 08:00 -
17:00. Closed Sat, Sun. J

GENEALOGY
CENTRAL REGISTRY ARCHIVE (ISTORIJOS
ARCHYVO SKYRIUS)
The entire Lithuanian civil registry archives from 1940 to
the present day, including records of all births, deaths and
marriages. To use the  service, location and approximate
date are essential.QMindaugo 8, tel. (+370) 52 13 74
82, www.archyvai.lt/en/news.html. Open 08:00 - 12:00,
12:45 - 17:00, Fri 08:00 - 12:00, 12:45 - 15:45. Closed Sat,
Sun. J

LITHUANIAN CENTRAL STATE ARCHIVE


(LIETUVOS CENTRINIS VALSTYBĖS ARCHYVAS)
When the Nazis invaded Lithuania, one of their first tasks
was to prepare an extensive set of records of everyone
living in the country. Those looking to trace people living
in Lithuania during the period 1941-42 should consult this
archive.QO. Milašiaus 21, tel. (+370) 52 47 78 30, www.
archyvai.lt. Open 08:00 - 12:00, 12:45 - 17:00, Fri 08:00 -
12:00, 12:45 - 15:45. Closed Sat, Sun.

LITHUANIAN STATE HISTORICAL ARCHIVES


City Essentials
(LIETUVOS VALSTYBĖS ISTORIJOS ARCHYVAS)
As with the Central Registry Archive (see above), these
archives are from the church registry up until 1940.
Only our favourite places
QMindaugo 8, tel. (+370) 52 19 53 20, www.archyvai. Works offline, incl. maps
lt. Open 08:00 - 12:00, 12:45 - 17:00, Fri 08:00 - 12:00,
12:45 - 15:45. Closed Sat, Sun. Free download
Incl. dozens of other cities

www.iyp.me/app

E S S E N TI A L
C I TY G U I D E S

The Presidential Palace from the rear Jurgita Bakanauskaitė

facebook.com/VilniusInYourPocket Summer 2018 85


Health & Useful Addresses
REGISTRY (GYVENTOJŲ REGISTRO TARNYBA)
If you have a name and need an address these people will
help you locate the person in question (the addition of a
town helps speed things up), although non-Lithuanians
be warned that if the person in question is located they
are first asked if they actually want to be ‘found’ before
the address is given. The sensible thing for non-nationals
to do is to use this service with a Lithuanian intermediary.
QG‑10, Vinco Kudirkos 18-3, tel. (+370) 52 68 82 62,
www.registrucentras.lt/en/. Open 08:00 - 17:00, Fri
08:00 - 15:45. Closed Sat, Sun.

HOSPITALS Bridge from Žvėrynas into Vingis Park Lila Jarvis


VILNIUS UNIVERSITY HOSPITAL (RESPUBLIKINĖ
VILNIAUS UNIVERSITETINĖ LIGONINĖ)
QŠiltnamių 29, tel. (+370) 52 16 92 12, www.rvul.lt. KEY CUT
Open 24hrs. RAKTINĖ
QJ‑8, B. Radvilaitės 7, tel. (+370) 69 83 34 13, www.
raktine.lt. Open 09:00 - 19:00, Sat 09:00 - 14:00. Closed
INTERPRETERS Sun, Also at Pylimo 49. J
BALTICK LANGUAGE SERVICES
Interpreters, translators, guides. Voice-over, DTP, publishing.
Reliable, flexible, experienced. Quick service. Translation LEGAL & FINANCIAL
of technical, medical texts, legal documents, notarisation ADVIX BELEVIČIUS, BUKAUSKAS, ČIUPAILA IR
upon request. Translation from/to over 60 languages.QJ‑9, PARTNERIAI
Bernardinų 9-4, tel. (+370) 52 12 29 24/(+370) 68 58 QUlonų 5, tel./fax (+370) 52 78 87 45, www.advix.lt.
53 95, www.bv-translations.eu. Open 08:30 - 17:30, Fri
08:30 - 16:30. Closed Sat, Sun. J SABALIAUSKAS & PARTNERS
Specialising in real estate, corporate, labour and tax law.
QI‑8, Ž. Liauksmino 3, tel. (+370) 52 12 42 44. J

MEDICAL SERVICES
BALTIC-AMERICAN CLINIC
Highly recommended, super-modern professional health
care and diagnostics on the edge of the city, now bigger
and better than ever before.QNemenčinės 54a, tel.
(+370) 52 34 20 20/(+370) 69 85 26 55, www.bak.lt.
Open 00:00 - 00:00, Open 24hrs. A­P­K

KARDIOLITA
A privately-run hospital with a broad range of medical
services.QA‑1, Laisvės 64a, tel. (+370) 52 39 05 00,
www.kardiolita.lt. Open 07:00 - 21:00, Fri 07:00 - 20:00,
Sat 09:00 - 15:00. Closed Sun. A

MEDICAL DIAGNOSTIC AND TREATMENT


CENTRE (MEDICINOS DIAGNOSTIKOS IR
GYDYMO CENTRAS)
Excellent staff and facilities are at hand for everything from
regular check-ups to major surgery, with all the lab tests,
scans and caring guidance along the way, and with English
speaking doctors and  24-hour urgent surgery services.
It’s all so good, they’ve just set up a branch in Dublin,
Ireland, known as Sandyford Healthcare.QN‑3, V. Grybo
32a, tel. (+370) 52 33 30 00/(+370) 69 80 00 00, www.
medcentras.lt. Open 07:00 - 20:00, Sat 08:00 - 15:00.
Closed Sun. A
86 Vilnius In Your Pocket vilnius.inyourpocket.com
Health & Useful Addresses
MEDICINE GENERAL PRIVATE CLINICS
(MEDICINA GENERALIS)
Excellent English-speaking doctor for general and family
health located in the city centre opposite the Cathedral.
High quality care.QI‑8, Gedimino 1a-19, tel. (+370) 52 61
35 34, www.clinic.lt. Open 09:00 - 17:00. Closed Sat, Sun,
Open by appointment. A­J­W

SPECIAL INTEREST
INTERNATIONAL WOMEN’S ASSOCIATION OF
VILNIUS
This long-established association welcomes women from
all cultural backgrounds living in the Lithuanian capital.
As well as organising regular events including coffee
mornings, social evenings and a book club, it hosts a
number of charitable events, such as the annual, much-
loved International Christmas Charity Bazaar in early
December.Qwww.iwavilnius.com.

THE INTERNATIONAL CHURCH OF VILNIUS


Using the Evangelical Lutheran Church at Vokiečių 20 for
services, the church conducts English-language worship at
09:30 every Sunday as well as midweek Bible studies and
courses exploring the Christian faith. Special events include
carols in December, Christmas morning worship and an
Easter sunrise service.QI‑10, Vokiečių 20, tel. (+370) 67
33 89 96, www.vilniuschurch.org. Ecumenical Worship
Sun 09:30. T­J

TATTOOS & PIERCING BUSINESS CONNECTIONS


ANGIS TATTOO
Ink wielding artists who speak English, Russian, French and
Spanish. An hour of tattooing costs €90. Minimum charge AMERICAN CHAMBER OF COMMERCE
€45. They refused to tattoo our eyeballs, but didn’t refuse a QG‑5, Konstitucijos 26, tel. (+370) 52 61 11 81,
client who requested a tattoo in a place normally only seen www.amcham.lt. Open 08:00 - 17:00. Closed Sat,
by proctologists and customs officers. QJ‑9, Literatų 4, tel. Sun.
(+370) 68 91 65 94. Open 12:00 - 20:00. Closed Sat, Sun. J
ASSOCIATION OF LITHUANIAN CHAMBERS
OF COMMERCE, INDUSTRY & CRAFTS
VETS & PETS (LIETUVOS PREKYBOS, PRAMONĖS IR
SENAMIESČIO VETERINARIJOS KLINIKA AMATŲ RŪMŲ ASOCIACIJA)
House calls can be arranged.QI‑9, Liejyklos 6, tel. (+370) QG‑7, Vašingtono 1-63a, tel. (+370) 52 61 21 02,
69 96 12 65, www.veterinaras.lt. Open 09:00 - 19:30, Sat www.chambers.lt. Open 08:00 - 12:00, 12:45 - 17:00,
09:00 - 16:00. Closed Sun. A­J Fri 08:00 - 15:00. Closed Sat, Sun. J

BRITISH CHAMBER OF COMMERCE


QJ‑9, Didžioji 5, tel. (+370) 52 69 00 62, www.bccl.
lt. J

EUROPEAN BUSINESS NETWORK


QP.O. Box 1125, www.ebn.lt. J

INVEST LITHUANIA (INVESTUOK LIETUVOJE)


QH‑8, Jogailos 4, tel. (+370) 52 62 74 38, www.
investlithuania.com. Open 08:00 - 17:00, Fri 08:00 -
15:45. Closed Sat, Sun. J
Hounds at the foot of Gediminas Hill Jurgita Bakanauskaitė

facebook.com/VilniusInYourPocket Summer 2018 87


Hotels

Relais & Châteaux Stikliai Hotel (on the right) | © www.vilnius-tourism.lt

Vilnius has a wide range of accommodation options in RADISSON BLU ROYAL ASTORIJA
all parts of the city. Prices remain lower than in Western QJ‑10, Didžioji 35/2, tel. (+370) 52 12 01 10, fax (+370)
Europe meaning staying right in the centre is an option. 52 12 17 62, www.radissonblu.com/hotel-vilnius.
119  rooms. A­P­X­U­J­R­W­K­H­C­D­F­i
hhhhh
CREAM OF THE CROP
IMPERIAL HOTEL&RESTAURANT RELAIS & CHATEAUX STIKLIAI HOTEL
QJ‑10, Subačiaus 2, tel. (+370) 52 55 33 55, fax (+370) QI‑9, Gaono 7, tel. (+370) 52 64 95 95, www.stikliai.com.
52 55 33 11, www.imperialvilnius.lt/. €135 - 450. A­P­ €140 - 1300. A­P­U­I­J­R­6­W­K­H­C­D­F­i
X­T­U­I­L­J­R­6­W­K­H­D­F­i hhhhh hhhhh

KEMPINSKI HOTEL CATHEDRAL SQUARE THE NARUTIS


QI‑8, Universiteto 14, tel. (+370) 52 20 11 00, fax QJ‑9, Pilies 24, tel. (+370) 52 12 28 94, www.narutis.com.
(+370) 52 20 11 20, www.kempinski.com/vilnius. €250 - €120 - 350. A­P­T­U­I­L­J­6­W­K­H­C­D­i
2000. A­P­T­U­I­L­J­R­W­K­H­C­D­F­i hhhhh
hhhhh
VILNIUS GRAND RESORT
SYMBOL KEY QEžeraičių 2, Ežeraičio village, Vilnius district, tel.
(+370) 52 73 97 00, www.vilniusgrandresort.com. €100 -
500. A­P­X­T­U­I­L­6­W­K­H­C­D­F­i
P Air conditioning A Credit cards accepted
hhhhh
O Casino H Conference facilities
T Child-friendly U Facilities for the disabled UPMARKET
F Fitness centre L Guarded parking AMBERTON HOTEL
R LAN connection
QI‑8, L. Stuokos-Gucevičiaus 1, tel. (+370) 52 10 74 61,
6 Pet-friendly
www.ambertonhotels.com. 116  rooms Breakfast not
K Restaurant J Old town location included. A­P­X­U­L­J­R­W­K­H hhhh
D Sauna C Swimming pool
ARTAGONIST ART HOTEL
I Fireplace W Wi-Fi QPilies 34, tel. (+370) 52 43 00 00, www.artagonist.lt.
€90 - 300. A­P­U­J­R­6­W­K­H­i hhhh
88 Vilnius In Your Pocket vilnius.inyourpocket.com
Hotels
MABRE RESIDENCE
Full contents online: QJ‑9, Maironio 13, tel. (+370) 52 12 20 87, www.mabre.
vilnius.inyourpocket.com lt. €95  - 200. A­P­L­J­R­6­W­K­H­C­D­i
hhhh

ARTIS CENTRUM HOTELS NERINGA


QI‑9, Totorių 23, tel. (+370) 52 66 03 66, fax (+370) QH‑8, Gedimino 23, tel. (+370) 52 12 22 88, fax
52 66 03 77, www.artis.centrumhotels.com. €79 - 225. (+370) 52 12 22 99, www.neringahotel.com. 60 rooms.
A­P­U­L­J­R­W­K­H­C­D­F­i hhhh A­P­U­L­J­R­6­W­K­H­C­D­F hhhh

ATRIUM NOVOTEL VILNIUS CENTRE


QJ‑9, Pilies 10, tel. (+370) 52 10 77 77, www.atrium.lt. QH‑8, Gedimino 16, tel. (+370) 52 66 62 00, www.novotel.
€75 - 95. A­P­U­L­J­6­W­K­H­D­i hhhh com. €67  - 200. A­P­T­U­J­6­W­K­H­D­F­i
hhhh
BEST WESTERN VILNIUS
QH‑6, Konstitucijos 14, tel. (+370) 52 73 95 95, fax RADISSON BLU HOTEL LIETUVA
(+370) 52 73 95 00, www.vilniushotel.eu. €89  - 159. QH‑6, Konstitucijos 20, tel. (+370) 52 72 62 72, www.
A­P­U­6­W­K­H­C­D­Fi ­ hhhh radissonblu.com/lietuvahotel-vilnius. 291  rooms.
A­P­T­U­L­J­R­W­K­H­D­F­O­i hhhh
CITY HOTELS ALGIRDAS
QG‑10, Algirdo 24, tel. (+370) 52 32 66 50, www.cityhotels. SHAKESPEARE BOUTIQUE HOTEL
lt. 42 rooms. A­P­X­U­J­W­K­H­i hhhh QJ‑9, Bernardinų 8, tel. (+370) 52 66 58 85, fax
(+370) 52 66 58 86, www.shakespeare.lt. €85  - 220.
CONGRESS AVENUE A­P­T­U­L­J­R­6­W­K­H­i hhhh
QI‑8, Gedimino 12, tel. (+370) 52 12 17 16, www.
congressavenue.lt. €130 - 180. A­P­U­J­W­K­H­i VIEŠBUTIS CONGRESS
hhhh QI‑7, Vilniaus 2/15, tel. (+370) 52 69 19 19, www.
congress.lt. €100  - 174. A­P­L­J­W­K­H­F­i
CONTI hhhh
QI‑11, Raugyklos 7/2, tel. (+370) 52 51 41 11, fax
(+370) 52 51 41 00, www.contihotel.lt. €57  - 300.
A­P­U­L­J­R­6­W­K­H­D­F­i hhhh MID-RANGE
ALEXA OLD TOWN HOTEL VILNIUS
CROWNE PLAZA VILNIUS QI‑11, Pylimo 53, tel. (+370) 52 19 17 80, www.hotelalexa.
QD‑9, M. K. Čiurlionio 84, tel. (+370) 52 74 34 00, www. eu. €35 - 130. A­X­U­L­JR ­ ­6­W­K­H­i hhh
cpvilnius.com. 108 rooms. A­P­L­W­K­H­C­D­F­i
hhhh APIA HOTEL
QI‑9, Šv. Ignoto 12, tel. (+370) 52 12 34 26/(+370) 61 67
DVARAS 62 99, www.apia.lt. €60 - 200. A­P­J­W­i hhh
QI‑8, Tilto 3/1, tel. (+370) 52 10 73 70, www.dvaras.lt.
€76 - 129. A­P­L­J­R­W­K­i hhhh CENTRO KUBAS
QI‑10, Stiklių 3, tel. (+370) 52 66 08 60, fax (+370)
EMBASSY HOTEL BALATONAS 52 66 08 63, www.hotel.centrokubas.lt. €93  - 123.
QD‑6, Latvių 38, tel. (+370) 52 72 22 50, www.embassyhotel. A­P­X­U­J­R­6­W­H­i hhh
lt. €53 - 110. A­P­U­LW ­ ­K­H­D­i hhhh

EUROPA ROYALE VILNIUS


QJ‑10, Aušros Vartų 6, tel. (+370) 52 66 07 70, www.
europaroyale.com. €89. A­P­X­U­L­J­6­W­K­H­i
hhhh

GROTTHUSS BOUTIQUE HOTEL


QI‑10, Ligoninės 7, tel. (+370) 52 66 03 22, www.
grotthusshotel.com. A­X­LJ ­ ­6­W­K­H­i hhhh

HOLIDAY INN VILNIUS


QI‑6, Šeimyniškių 1, tel. (+370) 52 10 30 00, fax (+370)
52 10 30 01, www.holidayinnvilnius.lt. €99  - 140.
A­P­U­L­J­W­K­H­D­F­i hhhh Sunset SUP on the River Neris

facebook.com/VilniusInYourPocket Summer 2018 89


Hotels
CITY GATE HOTEL PANORAMA
QJ‑11, Bazilijonų 3, tel. (+370) 52 10 73 06, www. QI‑12, Sodų 14, tel. (+370) 52 33 88 22, www.
citygate.lt. €50 - 110. A­U­L­J­W­K­H­i hhh panoramahotel.lt. €53  - 130. A­J­6­W­K­H­O­i
hhh
CITY HOTELS RŪDNINKAI
QI‑11, Rūdninkų 15/46, tel. (+370) 52 61 39 16, fax RINNO
(+370) 52 12 05 07, www.cityhotels.lt/rudninkai/en. QH‑10, Vingrių 25, tel. (+370) 52 62 28 28, www.rinno.lt.
€45 - 120. A­P­U­L­J­W­K­D­i hhhh €62 - 114. A­P­L­J­6­W­H­i hhh

COMFORT HOTEL LT SENATORIAI


QH‑11, Kauno 14, tel. (+370) 52 50 51 11, www.comforthotel. QI‑8, Tilto 2, tel. (+370) 52 12 64 91, www.senatoriai.lt.
lt. €45 - 137. A­P­U­L­J­R­6­W­KH ­ ­F­i hhh €48 - 85. A­J­6­W­K­i hhh

DOMUS MARIA VIVULSKIO APARTAMENTAI


QJ‑11, Aušros Vartų 12, tel. (+370) 52 64 48 80, fax QA. Vivulskio 12B, tel. (+370) 63 00 01 62, www.
(+370) 52 64 48 78, www.domusmaria.com. €55 - 121. vivulskioapartamentai.lt. 24  rooms Breakfast not
A­U­L­J­R­W­K­H­i hhh included. A­L­6­W­D hhh

EUROPA CITY VILNIUS ŽEMAITĖS


QF‑8, J. Jasinskio 14, tel. (+370) 52 51 44 77, fwww.europacity. QE‑12, Žemaitės 15, tel. (+370) 52 13 31 93, www.
lt. €55  - 125. A­P­U­L­J­R­6­W­K­H­D­F­i hotelzemaites.lt/3-star-hotel-in-vilnius. €38  - 80.
hhh A­P­X­U­L­R­W­K­H­C­D­i hhh

GRATA HOTEL
QF‑10, Vytenio 9, tel. (+370) 52 68 33 00, www.gratahotel. AIRPORT
com. 101  rooms. A­T­U­L­R­6­W­K­H­C­D­i AIRINN VILNIUS
hhh QRodūnios Kelias 8, tel. (+370) 52 32 93 04, www.airinn.
lt. 121 rooms. A­I­L­W­K­H­D­F­i hhh
HOTEL TILTO
QI‑8, Tilto 8, tel. (+370) 52 10 00 21, www.hoteltilto.
com. €48 - 140. A­P­J­W­KH ­ ­i hhh BED & BREAKFAST
B&B FLORENS
IBIS STYLES VILNIUS QI‑11, Sodų 4, tel. (+370) 61 88 05 05, www.guesthouse.
QMinsko 14, tel. (+370) 52 03 22 82, www.ibisstylesvilnius. lt. €30 - 60. W­i
lt. €39 - 106. A­P­T­U­L­6­W­K­H­i hhh
BERNARDINŲ B&B HOUSE
IVOLITA VILNIUS HOTEL QJ‑9, Bernardinų 5, tel. (+370) 52 61 51 34/(+370) 65 64
QI‑11, Gėlių 5, tel. (+370) 52 64 88 33, www.ivolita.lt. 32 84, fax (+370) 52 60 84 10, www.bernardinuhouse.
€50 - 100. A­L­J­W­H­i hhh com. €35 - 75 Breakfast not included. A­L­J­6­W

KAROLINA PARK HOTEL VILNIUS HOME B&B


QSausio 13-osios 2, tel. (+370) 52 16 89 34, www. QH‑9, Pylimo 14b, tel. (+370) 66 29 93 22, www.
karolina.lt. 95  rooms. A­L­6­W­K­H­C­D­i vilniushome.eu. Check in hours 14:00 - 18:00. €32 - 55
hhh Breakfast not included. A­J­W

BUDGET
CORNER HOTEL
QG‑10, T. Ševčenkos 16, tel. (+370) 52 10 23 61, www.
cornerhotel.lt. 146 rooms. A­U­L­6­W­K­H­i hhh

ECOTEL VILNIUS
QI‑6, Slucko 8, tel. (+370) 52 10 27 00, fax (+370) 52 10 27
07, www.ecotel.lt. €58  - 81. A­U­L­J­R­6­W­H­i
hhh

MIKOTEL
QI‑11, Pylimo 63, tel. (+370) 52 60 96 26, fax (+370) 52
Cutting-edge design at the Artagonist Art Hotel 60 96 27, www.mikotel.lt. €39 - 61. A­J­6­W­i hh
90 Vilnius In Your Pocket vilnius.inyourpocket.com
Hotels

VILNIUS CITY HOTEL FILARETAI HOSTEL


QG‑11, Švitrigailos 11D, tel. (+370) 68 98 77 77, fax QL‑8, Filaretų 17, tel. (+370) 68 65 55 89, www.
(+370) 52 15 04 11, www.vilnius-hotel.lt. €30  - 70. filaretaihostel.lt. €5 - 60 Breakfast not included. A­6­W
A­U­L­W­K­H­i hhh
HOSTELGATE
QJ‑11, Aušros Vartų 17-1, tel. (+370) 63 83 28 18, www.
GUESTHOUSES hostelgate.lt. €8 - 12. A­I­L­J­W­D
LITINTERP GUEST HOUSE
QJ‑9, Bernardinų 7, tel. (+370) 52 12 38 50/(+370) 68 99 HOSTEL JAMAIKA
85 17, fax (+370) 52 12 35 59, www.litinterp.com. €20 - QI‑11, Visų Šventųjų 9, tel. (+370) 68 87 67 66, www.
54 Breakfast not included. A­JW ­ ­i hh vilniushostel.com. €9 - 60 Breakfast not included. A­J­W

MANO LIZA JIMMY JUMPS HOUSE


QI‑10, Ligoninės 5, tel. (+370) 52 12 22 25, www. QJ‑10, Savičiaus 12-1, tel. (+370) 52 31 38 47, www.
hotelinvilnius.lt. €50 - 123. A­L­J­R­6­K­i hhh jimmyjumpshouse.com. €9 - 30. L­J­W

HOSTELS SHORT TERM RENTAL


DO RE MI VILNIUS HOSTEL BARBACAN APARTMENTS
QG‑8, Aukų 3, tel. (+370) 52 40 59 58, www.doremihostel. QJ‑10, Bokšto 19/12, tel. (+370) 61 51 26 88, www.
com. €25 - 60 Breakfast not included. A­R­W barbacan.lt. €65 - 115. A­L­J­W

DOWNTOWN FOREST HOSTEL & CAMPING EU APARTMENTS


QL‑10, Paupio 31a, tel. (+370) 68 68 45 23, www. QI‑10, Vokiečių 10, tel. (+370) 60 01 28 22, www.
downtownforest.lt. €6 - 68. A­I­L­6­W euapartments.lt. €58 - 110. L­J­R­W

FABRIKA HOSTEL & BAR VOKIEČIŲ APARTMENTS WITH A VIEW


QH‑8, A. Vienuolio 4, tel. (+370) 52 03 10 05, www. QI‑10, Vokiečių 13-31, tel. (+370) 68 24 82 45, www.
fabrikahostel.com. €10 - 45. A­P­J­6­W rent-a-flat.lt. €45 - 80. X­J­W
facebook.com/VilniusInYourPocket Summer 2018 91
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