Blogs from Vilnius, Lithuania, Europe

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Europe » Lithuania » Vilnius July 31st 2019

or Trans-Siberian Adventure – Prelude 1: Lithuania (and a bit of Poland and Latvia) This trip actually began in Poland but, seeing as that leg involved only a train from Puszczykowo to Warsaw immediately followed by an overnight bus to Vilnius, I shall spare you the few details and commence this series of blogs in Lithuania. As can be surmised from the subtitle, I have finally gotten around to taking the Trans-Siberian Railway from Europe to Asia. I’ve been wanting to do this for as long as I can remember. As a kid who was very much into geography facts, there was something alluring about the longest train ride in the world, across the world’s largest country, skirting the bottom of the world’s largest forest, past the world’s oldest, deepest, and most voluminous lake, to the ... read more
Varnikai Cognitive Walking Way
Vilnius Town Hall Square
Trakai Castle

Europe » Lithuania » Vilnius July 14th 2019

27th June - 14th July 2019 After our great clean up in Nikkala we crossed the border into Finland. No border controls were in evidence so it was very speedy and smooth. As in Norway and Sweden the roads are decorated with signs warning of elk (called moose in Alaska) every couple of kilometres but we never saw one. Jim read that in Sweden each year some 35,000 elk are killed by hunters. Finland is a flat country and if you like lakes, forests and mosquitoes you would love it. It is beautiful in places but the forests make it difficult to see very much as you travel. We chose a road which runs along by the Gulf of Bothnia for fifty miles or so and we did not view the sea once, only forest alongside ... read more
Town walls, Tallinn
Lots of alleyways
Bar staff

Europe » Lithuania » Vilnius May 23rd 2019

It was still light when we arrived in Vilnius at 7.15pm after a slow departure from Riga. A truck had collided with a car, blocking traffic and then our bus narrowly missed a cyclist. It was a 2.5km walk to our Airbnb but we stopped for groceries along the way arriving at our airbnb 8.20pm. Our walking legs were getting stronger. We had a quick briefing by our host and then to our pleasant surprise we were left with the apartment to ourselves as they left to spend the weekend planting tomatoes at their cottage. They left us a bowl of chocolates, hotel slippers and loads of special little extra touches. They were very warm, kind people. Day 1 was coldish and I did an Alternative tour of Riga in the afternoon mainly looking at street ... read more
Tomas happy in the sun with his Lithuanian beer
Vilnius Street Art. Part of a series that is in other places in the world. "The Yellow People"
Jesus with his backpack in Uzupio Republic which is a former idealistic community that has since been bought out by wealthy investors.

Europe » Lithuania » Vilnius September 26th 2018

Yesterday we left Belarus, crossing the border back into the more familiar European Union. We were told that this crossing could be lengthy and difficult, taking up to five hours or more, with again perhaps a border crossing guard asking to go through all our luggage. And this was heading into the EU! But, understandably, those crossing from the EU into Belarus are most carefully checked, and given that once inside the EU one can drive for thousands of miles without ever seeing another checked border point, we prepared to wait and try to gracefully accept whatever happened. The first stop, leaving Belarus, went very quickly and uneventfully. Happy with that part, we reboarded the bus and slowly processed to entering the EU station. What was surprising to see throughout this crossing was the very long ... read more

Europe » Lithuania » Vilnius July 15th 2018

Bonjour à tous, Comme hier 0 km pour la voiture, mais 12.8 pour moi plus encore ce soir. Je me suis renseigné sur le salaire moyen en Lituanie, en 2018 il est de 726 e. En France il est de 1910e. Dans certaines régions il est de 423e. Juste pour comparaison un abonnement internet 11,69e, location d’un studio 490e, dans le centre de Vilnius, en banlieue 310e. Le salaire moyen en Lettonie 647e, en Biélorussie 346, Estonie 975, Pologne 766, Suède 2213. Hier au soir encore, j’ai souper pour 10,20e, et je ne suis pas sortie avec la faim. Avec près de 13 km dans les jambes je suis content de revenir à l’hôtel. Déjà prendre une douche, il ne fait pas une grosse température, 20-22, mais il y a un taux d’humidité important. Depuis 2 ... read more
La nouvelle ville
Ste Anne
église St Esprit

Europe » Lithuania » Vilnius July 14th 2018

Bonjour à tous, J’aurais pu mettre en titre “Mais qu’il y a des variantes dans le nouveau testament (catholique). Sans mauvais jeu de mots, j’y perd mon latin. La voiture n’a pas bougée, mais, j’ai fait 11,7 km à pied. Et la journée n'est pas terminée. Hier au soir à l’hôtel garé, à côté de moi un motard espagnol. Nous avons discuter 1bonne heure. Son programme. Il est allé à Moscou voir un match, sans problème il avait un billet de FIFA. A laissé sa moto à Moscou, avec des copains, sont allés à Sotchi, à St Petersboug en avion, voir des matchs. Puis Moscou, Vilnius en moto, car ici il peut avoir des visas en une semaine, pour retourner en Russie, et se rendre à Wladivostock à l’autre bout de la Russie, en passant par ... read more
Sventaragio
année 60-70?????
place Sirvydo

Europe » Lithuania » Vilnius July 12th 2018

Bonjour à tous J’ai probablement une partie d’explication sur le si mauvais état des rues de Riga. Hier au soir je sorts pour manger, et le choix de restaurants est presque infini. Le premier où je m’installe en terrasse, la serveuse m’apporte le menu et me dit on ne prend pas les cartes de crédit, je me lève et part. Le deuxième pareil, là je suis resté, car il doivent tous pratiquer pareil. Les serveuses t’indiquent où est le distributeur. Ce qui m’a permis de demander, à ma voisine de table, une jeune femme si elle connaissait la raison. Non je viens d’Helsinki. Nous avons quand même discuté pendant un bon moment et j’ai travaillé mon anglais. Je pense que tous les commerçants font un maximum de black. Ceci peut expliquer cela. Et si on pousse ... read more
Riga Opéra National
Vilnius
Riga Pilsetas Kanal

Europe » Lithuania » Vilnius June 18th 2018

Today we left Poland for Lithuania. We had previously changed some money to Zlotys ( mainly in case we needed to use the toilets) and so as we were heading towards Lithuania we needed to spend it. Found a spot for lunch but still had some money left. It was a Sunday so all the shops were closed except for food and drink outlets. Kevin managed to find a shop that sold wine and the shop assistant found him a suitable red off the top shelf - Jacobs Creek Shiraz Cabernet!!!! Our dinner that night was at the Restaurant Medininkai, in a medieval building near the town square and close to our hotel. City Tour next morning to see the Baroque buildings around town including the Vilnius Cathedral used by the Soviets in the 1950s as ... read more
Vilnius Cathedral
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Europe » Lithuania » Vilnius October 12th 2017

Today was a wonderful day in Vilnius, Lithuania! It is just after 9pm and we have returned to our room after a beautiful leisurely walk on the pedestrian street here outside of our hotel. It is cool and the leaves are turning colors and it is like a painting outside. To back up… we had a full city tour this morning for around 3.5 hours. We toured a Roman Catholic Orthodox Church from the 1600s. There is no way my pictures can capture the details of the carvings inside the church but I tried. There was also a funky bar just next door to the church. I suppose this is okay since they are Catholics. LOL We visited the town hall square and there seemed to be churches – Gothic, Roman Catholic, Lutheran, etc… everywhere…. In ... read more
Ceiling of church
More ceilings - paintings and carvings
Crystal boat hanging from ceiling in church

Europe » Lithuania » Vilnius October 11th 2017

We are in the country of Lithuania tonight. I like it! The vibe here is good and the buildings – everywhere – are gorgeous. It’s like walking around a fake town and our hotel isn’t even in the “old towne” section. Their “normal” buildings are beautiful. Kamie & I walked around town on our own for a couple of hours during lunch today and then at 3pm we took a group tour of the Museum of Genocide or the KGB Museum. This is the original prison that was the headquarters for the Gestapo during the German occupation and the headquarters for the KGB during the Russian occupation. I will tell the stories below the pictures but I warn you, they are extremely sad. At one point during the basement prison tour, I felt it was too ... read more
Vilnius, Lithuania
View from front window of our hotel room
KGB and Gestapo Headquarters




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