Blogs from Lithuania, Europe - page 4


Europe » Lithuania » Kaunas July 13th 2012

Today has been 'one of those days'. I got up just in time to get the 9.37 bus to the IX Fort, got to the bus stop at 9.34...plenty of time. Wasn't concentrating...missed bus...another arrives, me and the driver have a funny conversation him in Lithuanian, me in English about how I'm at the wrong stop.... For the first time ever in my life .... I HAD READ A MAP WRONG. I was meant to take a right to the other side of the main street. It didn't matter though - in my fury I had a tea and a croissant. Then went to the correct bus stop. I got on the bus and explained to the driver where I wanted to go (just to make sure I was right this time). He just shrugged his ... read more

Europe » Lithuania » Vilnius July 12th 2012

I didn't think that these photos were good enough for the main blog ...... read more
Vilnius Cathedral
Vilnius Cathedral
Vilnius Cathedral

Europe » Lithuania » Kaunas July 12th 2012

I don't think I could of picked a nicer place than Kaunas to spend my last few days. It's really chilled, almost car free and the people talk to themselves (or they speak to me just I don't understand...). I didn't have a good night as I think I might be coming down with something (is backpackers flu a diagnosis?!) so switched off my alarm and slept until 9.30. I decided what was needed was a relaxed day with copious amounts of tea. I started the day with a crepe and brew number 1. There was a statue of a man opposite the cafe and every day someone puts a flower or flowers between his arm and chest! There is also a statue of a random cat. I decided for jokes to go to the zoological ... read more

Europe » Lithuania » Kaunas July 11th 2012

Today I am knackered. Not mentally, but physically. My feet feel like they are slowly solidifying and I can feel every muscle in my legs. All my clothes smell the same even though I have washed them (in the shower...) and I am constantly with a glow of suncream/sweat. I am nearly ready for home...but not quite! I slept until passed 9 today which was unusual for me and I even didn't wake up when 3 people came into the room late (this is a first!). I bought some pastries from the supermarket for breakfast - it is always pot luck what you will get as the signs are not in English (and why should they be?) but I've developed a knack of picking the good ones - today I had a Lithuanian version of a ... read more

Europe » Lithuania » Trakai July 11th 2012

Immediately after breakfast, I dashed out to the shopping centre to get some packed lunch and, as you do, came back with a bus ticket! As I walked to the trolley bus stop, the number 5 was just arriving - great timing - so I climbed aboard, stamped my ticket and was at the bus station before you could read a short story. I then went into the ticket office to get a ticket to Trakai but was confounded by a Russian who was asking the lass in the office too many questions. Every time she beckoned me over, he's push back in and ask another question. I got fed up and just stood with my back to him so that he couldn't get back in! After a thirty minute stop/start journey with the driver in ... read more
Lake Luka
1950s Soviet Pedalo
Trakai Castle

Europe » Lithuania » Vilnius July 10th 2012

As I haven't written what's occuring for 2 days I will do 2 seperate ones. The other will focus on the Jewish history of Vilnius and will provide interesting reading (I hope). So I began my first proper day in Vilnius exploring the 13 courtyards of the University. As an expert map reader I actually struggled following the map so I just explored at will! It's really nice actually but aint got shit on Liverpools red brick?!!?!? It even has a belfry which I went up then had to literally climb to the very top. I normally don't get scared but I was! I think because my feet are starting to surrender to all the walking I was struggling to put my feet on the tiny steps! The view was amazing seeing all the spires and ... read more

Europe » Lithuania » Vilnius July 10th 2012

So basically Vilnius has got a right battering over the years. But one event will never (and should never) be forgotten. Vilnius was once home to a sizeable Jewish population 'The Jerusalem of the North' and there was about 100000 Jews living here (out of 240000 in Lithuania) and synagogue, schools, a daily newspaper etc etc. This is until the Nazis showed up and distroyed it all,burnt down all the buildings, made the Jewish people walk in the gutter and wear stars. Then all the events happened that make you feel sick. I think it is so unbelievable as these were human beings doing these monstrosities to other human beings. I went to the holocaust museum (which she let me in for free for some reason so I donated some as it was really good). It ... read more

Europe » Lithuania » Vilnius July 10th 2012

Left the hotel at 09h00, walking across the Green Bridge to view the Soviet statues left as a reminder of what was and then continued down Vilnius Gatvė to the main Tourist Information Centre and the Town Hall. City doesn't appear to be as vibrant as Riga nor even Tallin. Then continued on to the Republic of Užupis where I studied its constitution: Everyone has the right to live by the River Vilnelė, while the River Vilnelė has the right to flow by everyone. Everyone has the right to hot water, heating in winter and a tiled roof. Everyone has the right to die, but it is not a duty. Everyone has the right to make mistakes. Everyone has the right to individuality. Everyone has the right to love. Everyone has the right to be not ... read more
One of Four Soviet Statues on the Green Bridge
One of Four Soviet Statues on the Green Bridge
One of Four Soviet Statues on the Green Bridge

Europe » Lithuania » Vilnius July 9th 2012

Arrived in Lithuania after having started in Estonia two weeks ago and spending some time in Latvia. Got no idea what to expect from Lithuania but the first stop - the Hill of Crosses - was interesting. Walking around, I found one to remember the Russian massacre of the Poles in Katyn - a similar memorial being close to my home in the UK. The remainder of the day was spent at a slow crawl on an empty motorway, eventually arriving in Vilnius at 17h45. After a meal, I went to find the Shopping Centre and an ATM, before wandering across the White Bridge, into Lukiškės Square, along Gediminas Avenue to the Cathedral, before returning by the river footpath to the hotel ... and bed!... read more
Another Empty Motorway
The Hill of Crosses
Katyn Forest - not Forgotten

Europe » Lithuania » Vilnius July 8th 2012

Today has been epic. Ever since visiting Krakow last summer I have been waiting for that city/country where I feel at home and at ease....and Vilnius is that city. I actually love it. The Lithuanians are a quirky bunch and I think that's why I fit in! I had to get up at 5.30 this morning to catch the bus. Last night actually, the Omid Djalili guy ended up to be a member of the mafia. I think he is a good one to have on my side. Since it was raining I stayed in and he gave me a beer. I have wondered why people keep staring at me in the street and had decided it was one of 1.I look shit 2.I look amazing (if you've ever seen me in 30 degree heat....) or ... read more

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