Top 10 of Vilnius' "Must-See" Places
Gabriel Orentas


Top 10 of Vilnius Must-See Places

Every city in the world has a "must-see" site. New York has the Statue of Liberty, Paris the Eiffel tower, London the Big Ben. We, in the Baltic, also have a few "must-see" stuff that we like to show and brag about… and yes, they may not well be as fancy as Buckingham palace, or Versailles but hey, they are as old or even older, in fact, when it comes to old stuff, we have a lot to show around:

Gates of Dawn

Gates of Dawn

Gates of Dawn

One of the remands of Vilnius original defensive wall and the only gate still standing in the city. After Lithuania converted to Christianity, each one of the gates would bear an icon of the Virgin Mary for protection. Many miracles have been attributed to this image and it is common to see people kneeling and praying to it from down the street.

Gediminas Hill Castle

Gedimino Pili

Gediminas Hill Castle

From the original hill castle that once dominated the city there is one tower still standing. In here you can learn more about the history of the city, but even better, you can go all the way up and have a look at the amazing panoramic views. You can see it all, from the all town to its modern side.

Cathedral Square

Cathedral Square

Cathedral Square

Perhaps the main point of encounter for locals and from where most city tours depart. During the summer the square is buzzing with the sounds of children, teens and concerned parents. Wait to an exact hour and you will hear the concert of bells from the Cathedral's bell tower. The cathedral was originally built on a pagan holy site and has been re-purposed several times for many things, from art gallery to truck-repair shop.

St. Anne's Church

St. Anne's Church

St. Anne's Church

This is without doubt the cutest church in Vilnius. So cute indeed you want to hug it! Legend has it that, when Napoleon was on the way to invade Russia, he said he would love to take this little church on the palm of his hand back to Paris. I wonder what he said on the way back?

Vilnius, Islandijos and Pilies streets

Pilies street

Pilies street

Vilnius has a buzzing nightlife, from Thursdays till Sundays. If you can't decide where to go, the little triangle formed by Islandijos and Vilnius streets is a good way to start. There is plenty of bars and clubs. Plenty such places rarely last more than a year, so there is always something new to try. Another such street, just ten minutes away, is Pilies. Historically famous for street performers, here pubs and restaurants enjoy better longevity and is better for people looking for quieter meeting place.

Vilnius University

Vilnius University

Vilnius University

At some point the "oldest" in Europe and today "one of the oldest" in Europe, the university campus is a delight to walk around and one of the monuments we show the most to our visitors. The medieval architecture can be enjoyed best with a beer inside of local restaurant within the university's grounds.

Republic of Uzupis

Republic of Uzupis

Republic of Uzupis

This area of the city claimed independence a long time ago, but is not like anybody noticed it. You may want to have a look at their constitution, an witty text written in quite a few languages, so look out for yours.

Trakai

Trakai

Trakai

Technically not Vilnius but just 25km from the city, this castle is the main jewel in the Lithuanian crown. The castle "floats" over a huge lake in Trakai and it is visited by many locals during weekends. Now, take our advice, get on board a sail boat and enjoy a picnic while floating gently over the waters surrounding the castle.

St John's Tower

St John's Tower

St John's Tower

Restored a couple years ago, this tower offers a 360 degree view from the very centre of the old town. Upon entrance you will immediately notice a large pendulum on the right. It was not part of the original building of course, but it seems that during restoration somebody noted the tower was tall enough to hold a Foucault Pendulum, and so the built one in. Kind of nerdy if you think about it.

Vilnius from the Air

Vilnius from the Air

Vilnius from the Air

Elevate your perspectives and take a look down to the city like a god from the Olympus. Vilnius is one of the very few cities in the world that allow balloon rides over the skyline, so it unlikely you would be allowed to do this anywhere else. So take the opportunity and also great pictures.