Vilnius tails

Vilnius tails

Lithuania, Vilnius
Vilnius is a weekend city. A great place to unwind a bit; taste a culture, not that unfamiliar, but still with a slight taste of novelty; eat delicious food and take a thousand new photos.

Modern low-cost airlines are pushing us, if not towards monastic asceticism, then at least towards minimalism (please excuse the tautology). You collect your things and begin to understand more deeply the rule of 8 things of Buddhist monks. I believe they have achieved some success not only in matters of mystical insight, but also in everything related to traveling lightly. A razor for shaving hair instead of an army of bottles for cleansing and care; 2 robes - simple and at the same time comfortable, which can be used as a bed on rough terrain; a pot for rice (automatically replenished by caring believers) and several cute talismans that serve to maintain a rather important intangible asset - the aura of an adherent of the teaching) which, by the way, allows you to live quite tolerably and with some degree of dignity on alms.
Of course, I am far from perfect, and yet my backpack is much easier than the path to enlightenment. For that, thanks to Visa Air and the tariff of $74 to Vilnius and back.

Vilnius is a weekend city. A great place to unwind a bit; taste a culture, not that unfamiliar, but still with a slight taste of novelty; eat delicious food and take a thousand new photos.

According to the established tradition, we will play in associations and try to imagine an anthropomorphic embodiment of Vilnius. In my opinion, he would pass for a cheeky prepubescent orphan in a lace suit and fancy pants; a little darned and with a dashing patch right on Užupis. You stand there, touched by his angelic face, and he’s already thrusting his little icy palms into your armpits.

Because of this sneaky habit of his, on the first day I had to choose attractions based on the principle of “where you can warm up.” In general, as for attractions, any guidebook will be happy to offer you a good dozen of them, and some inquisitive blogger will offer you a couple more. The vast majority of them are located within the boundaries of theOld Town, therefore within walking distance of any creature equipped with decent legs.

National Museum of Lithuania

Let's start with the National Museum of Lithuania. It consists of two impressive buildings - the Old and New Arsenals. The old one houses the archaeological collection, part of which can be viewed outside in the museum's courtyard. There is also a massive sculpture of Vytautas the Great, in whose company you can enjoy a tolerable view of the Gediminas Tower, which with a powerful crown crowns the hill of the same name (proudly called “mountain” to give additional gloss to the whole composition).


The New Arsenal exhibits not so ancient collections; Probably most of the historical characters presented here were already wearing underpants or at least brushing their teeth. In any case, judging by the portraits, they knew a lot about caftans. Upon entry, for an additional 3 euros, you can become the proud owner of an audio guide in Russian and trace the new history of Lithuania from the heyday marked by the rule of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, to withering, decline and, finally, “enslavement” with the participation of the Prussians and Rus.
In general, the participation of the Russian Empire and the Soviets in the fate of Lithuania left such a rough tarpaulin imprint on the face of the country that any historical retrospective bears a distinct touch of PTSD.
After a 3-hour lecture, all sorts of Rodziwills got mixed up in my head, and my limbs became completely numb. Whether or not to visit a museum is a matter of personal preference; What we can say for sure is that don’t try to warm up there.

Bernardine Garden

Next, roughly violating the chronology of events, just for the sake of contrast, let’s move to the Bernardine Garden.
If the day has pleased you with precious warmth, then you cannot find a better place for a leisurely walk. Especially if it’s the height of spring outside and the garden flora is in frantic bloom. When every self-respecting bush, with solemn humility, demonstrates to the stunned public his manifesto of exhibitionism, and the gentle pheromones of vegetative love are heard in the air.
Thematic gardens, well-groomed lawns, shady alleys - everything here creates the harmony of peace of a properly organized park space, bordered by the fragile murmur of shallow Vilnia, and separated from the restless city by the massif of the Bernardine Church.

Three Crosses

Moving further and further from the city, through the Bernardine Garden, through Vilna, passing parks and steep hills. It's time to pump up your gluteal muscles and, at the same time, view Vilnius from the height to which the religious zeal of the Vilnius residents erected one of the most famous landmarks of the city, namely the Three Crosses monument. An object of controversial architectural value, the main trump card of which is its scale and inaccessibility. In general, simple and ingenuous, like a genuine symbol of faith, and at the same time grandiose and indestructible, like the power of any superstition. It presses over the city during the day, and at night it seems to overshadow it with its sign, shining in the heights with the bright light of LED lamps.
Those who did not leave their lungs on the flight of stairs and climbed all 917 steps with honor will have to hold their breath again, because here an extraordinary panorama will open up to your eyes. Medieval buildings immersed in greenery are the classic “toy-like” appearance of the European Old Town. Clearly in full view - tiny houses hidden under red tile roofs, elegant churches and empty churches with lanky bell towers, and in the distance, in a light haze, the strict graphics of modern districts take over the architectural baton.

Churches and cathedrals

Call upon the mercy of the gods, or capture the imagination of people? Whatever the motive of the architect, but sometimes awe, close to the sacred, rises in me when I step under the silent arches of the Temple. Vilnius is like an exhibition of spiritual architecture; There are countless churches here and the competition is so high that not everyone could overcome it... Some, like stone flowers, stretch to the sky with Gothic spiers or bloom with Baroque luxury, while others, withering under the yoke of soulless time and decay, bristle with withered plaster facades, as if autumn had come into their lives forever.

Užupis

Užupis, or Zarechye, is a rather strange place, an area with an alternative outlook on life, like Christiania in Copenhagen, but less liberal. We can say that it is not hippies who rule here, but free artists.
Well reflects the character of this unusual place - Constitution of the Republic of Užupis , which is engraved on steel plates, in the amount of 41 pieces (corresponding to 41 languages ​​of the world) and contains 41 theses, which I dare to present here in full due to their exceptional originality:

Constitution of the Republic of Uzhupis
1. A person has the right to live near the Vilnele River, and the Vilnele River has the right to flow near a person.
2. A person has the right to hot water, heating in winter, and a tiled roof.
3. A person has the right to die, but it is not his duty to do so.
4. A person has the right to make mistakes.
5. A person has the right to be one and only.
6. A person has the right to love.
7. A person has the right not to be loved, but not necessarily.
8. A person has the right not to be great and famous.
9. A person has the right to be lazy or do nothing.
10. A person has the right to love and care for a cat.
11. A person has the right to look after a dog for the rest of the life of one of them.
12. A dog has the right to be a dog.
13. A cat is not obliged to love its owner, but in difficult times it must help him.
14. A person has the right sometimes not to know whether he has responsibilities.
15. A person has the right to doubt, but it is not his responsibility.
16. A person has the right to be happy.
17. A person has the right to be unhappy.
18. A person has the right to remain silent.
19. A person has the right to believe.
20. A person has no right to violence.
21. A person has the right to realize his insignificance and greatness.
22. A person has no right to encroach on eternity.
23. A person has the right to understand.
24. A person has the right not to understand anything.
25. A person has the right to be of different nationalities.
26. A person has the right to celebrate or not celebrate his birthday.
27. A person must remember his name.
28. A person can share what he has.
29. A person cannot share what he does not have.
30. A person has the right to have brothers, sisters, and parents.
31. A person can be free.
32. A person is responsible for his freedom.
33. A person has the right to cry.
34. A person has the right to be misunderstood.
35. A person has no right to blame others.
36. A person has the right to privacy.
37. A person has the right not to have any rights.
38. A person has the right not to be afraid.
39. A person has the right, with the onset of cold weather, to fly away with the wild geese to warmer lands.
40. Man has the right to dive like a duck in the waters of life.
41. Don’t win              Don’t defend yourself              Don’t give up


...Surrender to the will of fantasy, when a soft cannabinoid fog bathes the consciousness in magical dreams, there is, perhaps, nothing complicated. But turning the result of your mental activity into a social manifesto requires a certain level of freedom of expression!

In general, Užupis itself is a kind of center for the applied implementation of creative efforts. Here you will find galleries, museums, and open installations. It’s like the Angel of Užupis is an unknown muse, to whose breast, filled with inspiration, all artists, tormented by a thirst for insight, strive to fall.

Unusual places

An angel soars high, his shadow flies far... And although we have discovered the center of creative bohemia, there are still a couple of original places with a special atmosphere in Vilnius. These, for example, include Jonas Mekas's Draft, the Garden of Ideas, Literary Street or the Keule Ruke Cafe. And, of course, it is worth noting the currently fashionable street art, which can transform dull facades into useful art objects.

To summarize, I will say that, in my opinion, Vilnius is a great place to start your tourist “career” without fear of overloading the virgin consciousness with a stream of new impressions. For experienced people... perhaps a little bland, but still cozy and infinitely cute :)

PS: The entire trip, lasting 5 days/4 nights, cost me less than $250. This is Vilnius tails.

I wish you happy travels!

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