Vilnius, Lithuania

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Vilnius, Lithuania

The crisp, cool air flows through the ancient alleyways of Vilnius on this winter’s day in this little Baltic nation. Little streets criss-cross Lithuania’s capital city, creating a maze of quiet streets largely ignored by the jet-setting tourists partying in the centre. This elderly gentleman walks his dog along the outside of the ancient stone wall that once surrounded and protected Vilnius from the outside world, the narrow track between the wall and the row of houses serving as a quiet pedestrian route. Despite being Lithuania’s largest city – and the Baltic State’s second-largest city – once you leave the bustling centre to weave the winding network of streets, alleys, and rivers (the broad Neris and the easy-going Vilnia both flow through the capital), Vilnius adopts a surprisingly small-town feel. Charming facades, orthodox churches painted in pastels, quiet riverside promenades and echoing cobblestone alleys are frequented largely by locals, creating a calm but cheerful atmosphere that mixes small-town ease with the vivacity of a European capital – a mix that is hard to find in most of Europe’s capitals and major cities.

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4 thoughts on “Vilnius, Lithuania

    • Indeed! Despite all, it was still probably my least favourite of the Baltic States. I just fell in head-over-heels in love with Tallinn (to the point where I briefly considered moving there if France didn’t work out), and Riga had the coolest Art Nouveau. I’d love to go on a Baltic trip with my husband one day, re-visit the capitals, but also get out of the cities and see the little villages and sweeping landscapes. It’s a wonderful corner of Europe! (fyi if you haven’t visited Tallinn yet and you ever get the chance – go!)

      • I have been to Tallinn for a day (from Helsinki) and their medieval old town was charming. I didn’t really have the time to explore other areas of the city besides the old town. I haven’t yet been to Riga but I hear that it’s so beautiful! We went to Vilnius on a bus, so I could enjoy some scenery from the bus, and we stayed in an apartment quite a distance from the city center. The entire city feels like a small village! I’d also really like to explore the Baltic states on a roadtrip. 🙂

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