Saturday, June 11, 2016

Vilnius, Lithuania

Vilnius, the capital of Lithuania, has Lithuanian, Polish and Russian heritage. We spent two days there including a day trip to the lake resort town of Trakai.

First, we have a cold beer.
Vilnius, Lithuania

Locals start a run from in front of the Cathedral Bell Tower.
Vilnius, Lithuania

View from our apartment.
Vilnius, Lithuania

The Literatu Street Project with plaques honoring poets and writes; and some nearby graffiti that caught my eye.
Vilnius, Lithuania

Vilnius, Lithuania

Vilnius, Lithuania

This canal marks the end of the Old Town and the beginning of the Užupio Respublika, an artists district which has a viewpoint.
Vilnius, Lithuania

Vilnius, Lithuania

Vilnius, Lithuania

Vilnius, Lithuania

The Cathedral Square is a popular hangout in the evenings.
Vilnius, Lithuania

Vilnius, Lithuania

The Town Hall is the central building in the Old Town. Also a place to hangout in the evening.
Vilnius, Lithuania

Vilnius, Lithuania

Our Lady of the Gate of Dawn, with its painting of St Mary, is a busy pilgrimage site at all hours of the day. Here, with the chapel closed, pilgrims are praying out loud in unison on the street below.
Vilnius, Lithuania

We set out early Saturday morning by bus to Trakai where there was a weekend festival ie the Galves Cup Festival which is centered around a weekend of sailing on Galves Lake. From the bus station, we walked into town passing some food stands and traditional wooded houses.
Trakai, Lithuania

Then we visited the castle which is on an island in Galves Lake and practically in the middle of the regatta.
Trakai, Lithuania

Trakai, Lithuania

Trakai, Lithuania

The start of the sailing regatta was one of the coolest things ever, having never before seen the start of a sailing regatta. The boats in front of us jockeyed back in forth behind the start line, sometimes appearing as feverish chaos and other times as synchronized order.
Trakai, Lithuania

Trakai, Lithuania

Trakai, Lithuania

And there were singers in traditional costumes.
Trakai, Lithuania

And a parade. What a great festival!
Trakai, Lithuania

Back in town, we visited the beautiful synagogue.
Vilnius, Lithuania

Vilnius, Lithuania

And watched the velobaras "cycling bar" pedal by.
Vilnius, Lithuania

Being the capital of Lithuania, there is a modest Changing of the Flag ceremony each Sunday at noon. Check out the guys in medieval costumes at back left.
Vilnius, Lithuania

Vilnius, Lithuania

Vilnius, Lithuania

The Market Hall.
Vilnius, Lithuania

Vilnius, Lithuania

Our Lady of the Gate of Dawn, again.
Vilnius, Lithuania

There are many churches in Vilnius; in fact, the June 1938 National Geographic describes Wilno, then part of Poland, as a "City of Churches".
Vilnius, Lithuania

Vilnius, Lithuania

Vilnius, Lithuania

Vilnius, Lithuania

Vilnius, Lithuania

On Sunday there was Sports Fair of sorts near the Cathedral where some young men where working hard to drum up interest in American Football. They told me they were players for the Riga Lions in the Baltic Sea League; then tried to recruit me to be a coach when I told them I was an American.
Vilnius, Lithuania

One can buy Sierra Nevada alus "beer" in the supermarket in Vilnius although the price is over 3 US dollars a bottle. Yikes!
Vilnius, Lithuania

And finally some evening/night shots from atop Castle Hill. As the calendar moved towards the summer solstice and we traveled farther north, the days became longer and longer, so much that getting true "night shots" meant losing sleep as the sun set after 10pm and "night" did not start until after midnight. All the shots below were taken between 10pm and 10:30pm.
Vilnius, Lithuania

Vilnius, Lithuania

Vilnius, Lithuania

Vilnius, Lithuania


3 comments:

Linda said...

Beautiful photos. Thank you so much for sharing this lovely tour.

DayleInNC said...

Great to see images of Lithuania, ancestral home of my mother's family. I'm going to have to show these pics to my mum as she'll be happy to see how things are now. And interesting to see Sierra Nevada beer is available, as I'll be visiting their brewery this week, which is down the road in Mills River.

john said...

Dayle, And Lithuania is of course your one of your ancestral homes as well. ;-) Looking forward to a report on your brewery tour. Talk with you soon.