Route Description Vilnius-Klaipeda from 2001 (not updated yet!)

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Vilnius – Trakai – Aukštadvaris – Birštonas – Prienai – Kaunas – Jurbarkas – Šilutė – Klaipėda

The proposed route Vilnius – Klaipėda is extremely rich with values of the cultural heritage. Having departed from Vilnius, in no time, you will appear in the homeland of Vytautas the great, in the Old Trakai. According to legends, before 1323, Gediminas founded a capital here. Accommodation – Trakai’s historical national park. Trakai will be followed by Nemunas’ region full of historical objects and beautiful castles. Later, the Little Lithuania comes, the land that took an integral part in the Lithuanian ethnic evolution. Finally, you will meet in Klaipėda, on the Sea Fest; and will get the chance to swim in the Baltic Sea.

Information about Vilnius:

  • In the publications “Vilnius in your pocket”

http://www.inyourpocket.com/Lithuania/Vilnius_home.shtml (in Lithuanian and English languages)

1st day (20.07, Friday)

Vilnius –Trakai

The length of the route – 38 km (asphalt roads). Start in Cathedral Square in Vilnius at 12:00). Vilnius –18– Lentvaris –11– Old Trakai –5– Trakai –4– sleeping place near lake Totoriškiai.

Vilnius – www.vilnius.lt

Information about Vilnius in the publications “Vilnius in Your Pocket” http://www.inyourpocket.com/Lithuania/Vilnius_home.shtml (in Lithuanian and in English).

Lentvaris

The estate of Liovariškiai is mentioned from the XVII century. Later in the XIX century, this estate turned into the settlement of Lentvaris. It is believed that this name comes from a personal name. In the 2nd half of the XIX century, the counts Tiškevičiai have built here an English neogothic castle. In the 7th decade of the XIX century, according to the landscape architect E.Andrea’s project, a park was started.

Trakai historical national park

It was founded in 1991 to seek protection of Trakai as Lithuania’s self-dependence center with its authentic natural surrounding. This is the only national park in Lithuania, as well as in the whole Europe. The popular local sight is the Island Castle (XIV – XV century).

Services

Events and Entertainment

Trakai
  • Trakai History Museum, Kęstutis str. 4, tel. (238) 55294;
  • Stud farm club “Perkūno žirgai”, Užtrakis str. 12a, (286) 12478, 55776, 55769;
  • Diving club “Akva”, Slėnis str. 1, Totoriškiai village, tel. (285) 50220, 25244;

Accommodation

Vilnius
  • Hotel “Ars Viva”, Liubartas str. 17, Žvėrynas, tel. (22) 752495;
  • Youth Hostel, Ukmergė str. 25, tel. (22) 722270;
Trakai
  • Campsite “Kempingas slėnyje”, Slėnis str.. 1, tel. (238) 51387, mob. (286) 46320;
  • Trakai sport club, Karaimai str. 73, tel. (238) 55501, 52501;
  • “Liepsnelė” (resting place), Žemaitė str. 2, tel. (238) 52221;
  • Hotel “Galvė”, Karaimai str.41, tel. (238) 51345;
  • A.Morkūnienė farmstead, Šaudyklos str. 6, tel. (238) 52811, mob. (287) 21811;
  • A.Gedvilas farmstead, Jovariškiai village, Trakai region., tel. (238) 47494, 74416;

Bicycle repair, market and rent services:

Vilnius
  • Bicycle shops “Dviračių centras”, Laisvė str. 77, Ukmergės 10a, tel. (22) 742826, 754581;
  • “Bicycle shop”, Kalvarijų 61, Vilnius (Kalvarijai market place), tel. (22) 752263;
  • Bicycle shop “G.M.Umarai”, Savanorių 40, Pilies str.. 9-12, tel. (22) 232292, 612004;
  • Bicycle shop “Klion”, Birbynių str. 4a, tel. (22) 628521;
  • Tourist shop “Sport, Tourism”, Kalvarijų 6, tel. (22) 752147;
  • Sport shop “Viskas sportui”, Geležinio Vilko str. 12-6, tel. (22) 617128, (298) 75319;
  • Bicycles shop, Fino 10, Fabijoniškių str. 61, tel. (22) 724452, 734025;
  • Bicycle repair and rent “Arčiau gamtos”, Mokyklos g. 3, (22) 701119, (287) 73845;
  • R.Mališka bicycles repair shop, Ukmergės str. 315B, tel. (287) 78547;

Useful contacts

Vilnius
  • Tourism information center, Pilies str.. 42, Vilniaus str. 22, tel. (22) 626470, 629660;
  • Medical station, tel. 03, (22) 724112;

  • Police, tel. 02, (22) 331168;

  • Travel agency “Krantas Travel” www.krantas.lt, Pylimo str. 4, tel. (22) 227084;

  • Safeguard company “Falck Security” www.falck-security.lt, Juozapavičiaus str. 6/2, tel. (22) 755880, (286) 50651;

  • Vilnius town municipality, Gedimino avenue 9, tel. (22) 620160 – mayor, 613091 – tourism department, 618825 –environmental protection department;

Trakai
  • Tourism information center, Vytauto str.69, tel. (238) 51934;
  • Medical station, tel. 03, (238) 55803;
  • Police, tel. 02, (238) 55912;
  • Trakai history national park, Karaimų str. 5, tel. (238) 55753;
  • Trakai town municipality, Vytauto str. 33, tel. (238) 55486 – mayor, 51987 –cultural and tourism department;

2nd day (21.07, Saturday)

Trakai – Punia

The length of the route – 79,0 km (gravel – 15 km, asphalt – 64 km): Totoriškiai lake –20– Semeliškės –13– Čižiūnai –4– Aukštadvaris –4– Totoriškės –4– Vaickūniškės –20– Butrimonys –10,5– Punia –3,5– sleeping place near Punia forest, sleeping place near Nemunas river.

Semeliškės

The old part of Semeliškės is the urban monument, which was being formed from 13-14 cent. till the end of the 19 cent. It is thought that many of the town layout’s elements are authentic in essence because there is no data that they were ever changed (the form of the square was the only one that was changed). Both of the cult buildings (Catholic and Orthodox churches) were slightly brightened. Moreover, the church lacks a tower. Semeliškės’ central composition is original due to the wood houses typical to the architecture of Eastern Lithuania.

Auštadvaris Regional Park

It was founded in 1992 for the purposes of protection of valuable Verksnė and Streva rivers’ landscape. The park takes up a territory of 15350 hectares, the bigger part of which are forests. There are 72 lakes; the biggest is called Vikoksnis.

Auštadvaris

The town is situated on the right Verkne river’s shore, not far form the lakes of Marcius and Skreblius.

The town is announced an urban reserve, the purpose of which is to preserve the planned and spatial structure of Aukštadvaris and its nature’s and cultural values. It is surrounded by a kind of crown of 250 hills with a multitude of lakes and thick forests. The town of Aukštadvaris was mentioned already in XV cent. as a grand duke’s estate situated near the historical royal road joining the castles of Vilnius, Trakai, and Birštonas. The town protects a former St. Dominique monastery built in the first half of the XVII cent., but later rebuilt a few times. Also, it protects neogothic elements of the Church of the Christ’s Change, built in 1913. The farmstead of Auštadvaris is also left form the older times. Further, its park guards a huge oak tree, now called the oak of Adam Mickevičius.

Punia

This is a town of a well-known historical past – the reserve of historical landscape. The sight of Punia – the mound that is frequently called the hill of Margis. It is one of the biggest ones in Lithuania (in the 16-17 cent, the place of the castle and the battle with the crusaders). It is situated in the junction of the rivers Nemunas and Punele. The name of Punia became known due to the historical tradition to connect the place with the mentioned in 1336 in the writings Pilenia, whose leader was a brave hero Margiris. It is thought that there stood a famous castle of Pilėnai on a mound. Its defenders burnt themselves because they did not want to surrender to the crusaders.

In the written sources of the 15 cent, Punia was a well-known settlement with the castle and a market square. Punia’s district was also mentioned. The first church was built in 1425.

During the 16-17 cent, it became one of the most important ethnographical centers of Lithuania. On Punia’s mound, on the place of the former wooden castle, there is a magnificent palace now, the residence of the Punia’s authorities. In 1503, Punia got the rights to be called Madgeburg.

Punia was destroyed during the Northern war. The town and the palace on the mound were burnt. In 1857, Punia’s church was built. Its sculptures of the 17-19 cent are ones of the most well-known cultural monuments.

Nemunas Loops Regional Park

The most valuable place of Punia’s loop is the unique landscape of Punia’s pinewood that preserved the features of the first primitive Lithuanian woods. These murmuring 100-yer-old trees are priceless treasures not only to scholars. This is one of the most valuable woods in Lithuania, the biggest Lithuanian wood in the river’s valley (more than 2700 ha). Foresters say that having come to Alytus and not visiting Punia’s wood is the same as going to Rome and not seeing the Pope.

Services

Accommodation

  • Rest house “Deimantas”, Semeliškės, tel. (238) 31072;Individual person V.Bielinienė, Pušyno str. 6, Aukštadvaris, tel. (238) 65346;
  • J.Ulevičius, Pušyno g. 5, Aukštadvaris, tel. (238) 65381;
  • Resting place “Vernėjus” (director R.Jagėla), Nikronių village, Aukštadvaris., tel. (238) 65586;

Useful contacts

  • Aukštadvaris local administration, Vytauto str. 33, Trakai, tel. (238) 65342;

  • Aukštadvaris Regional Park, Draugystės str. 2, Aukštadvaris, tel. (238) 65246;

3rd day (22.07, Sunday)

Punia – Birštonas – Duobakalnis

The length of the route – 60 km (gravel – 24 km, asphalt– 36 km): sleeping place –3,5– Punia –5– Šilėnai –3,5– Nemajūnai –9– Birštonas –6,5– Prienai –4,5– Bagrėnas –4– Ašminta –8– Pakuonis –8– Piliuona –8– sleeping place near Duobakalnis resting place.

Birštonas

The city’s history is not only the history of a resort. In the crusaders’ chronicles, Birštonas is mentioned form 14 cent. On a high hill of Vytautas, there stood a wooden castle – one of the castles’ chains which protected the land form the crusaders’ attacks. After the battle of Žalgiris when the crusaders stopped attacking Lithuania, the castles lost their defense purposes. Later, all the animals were driven to the grand loop of Nemunas near Birštonas from the nearby woods and being hunted there. The history of the resort is not that long. Although the spurring salty springs are mentioned already in the 15 cent., only in 1846 people started to use their healing qualities. This year is considered the date of the resort’s foundation.

Prienai

Prienai’s estate was first mentioned in 1502 in the writings of the grand duke Alexander. In 1609, the settlement got the town’s rights. In 1785, a paper workshop (one of the biggest in Lithuania at that time) was founded. Its building is the industrial historical monument now.

One of the places of cultural heritage is the water mill. In 1997, international tree carvers’ symposium took place. The whole row of wooden sculptures on the topic of “Nature – the Spring of Culture” was left after it. Prienai’s church is attributed to the most interesting wooden churches of the Latin cross style in Lithuania.

Places to visit:

The forest of Žverinčius is spreading on the loop of Nemunas-Prienai. It is unique due to the Scotch pine. There are nature’s cognitive and bicycle paths .

Kaunas lagoon Regional Park

It was established in 1992 in order to preserve Kaunas lagoon’s natural ecosystem and values of the cultural heritage. The waters are 44 m above the sea level; the highest place is in the forest of Pastrevis with 93 m above the sea level. The deepest place of the lagoon reaches 22 m. the park is especially interesting for the variety of dendro-flora; foresters have moved many unique trees and bushes from their dendropark to the coast of the lagoon. Due to erosion, there are many various vivid precipices and rock exposures. Places of interests:

  • Arlaviškiai juniper bushes

It is strongly recommended to visit the barn pulled up from the bottom of the lagoon. The remains of the poet Jonas Aistis rest here.

  • The oak tree of Pažaislis. This is the thickest oak in the region of Kaunas. Its size is 6.7 m, height – 23 m, age – about 800 years. The tree grows near the gates of the monastery of Pažaislis.

  • The twins of Dubrava. Near the park, there grow an oak and a pine-tree stuck together. The pine-tree is 32 m and an oak is 28 m height. The trees are announced the nature’s object of the State’s protection.

  • The grove of cork trees. In the foot of the Samylai mound, in the 10th plot, there grow two different groups of 25 trees. The cork trees impress with their soft and uneven crust, which was used to make corks.

  • The grove of firs. It is situated 800m away from the Samyliai mound in the 1st plot. For an unknown reason, the trees form a few tops.

  • The spring of Duobakalnis. Near the arbor of Duobakalnis’ resting place, there is a water reservoir that never dries. Its streams separate into two brooks. One of these brooks goes into the prepared cascade where one can have some drinking water.

Pakuonis

It is settled on both sides of Kuonė river. It got its name from the river.

Pakuonis is known from the 18 cent.. It was mentioned in the list of the parish’s villages in 1744. In 1794, Juozapas Osipovskis, Lithuania’s general major, and the monitor of Pagermuonis built the church.

When the church got old, the dean Kazimieras Jasiuliavičius – Jasulaitis with the congregation built a small stone chapel in 1883. During WWI, the Russians blew the church’s tower that was never rebuilt.

During the times of press prohibition, Pakuonis was one of the biggest press spreading centers.

Piliuona

In the south – western coast of Dubrava forest, on the right Nemunas’ shore, there is Guogai village, and 3 km to the north from it, is Piliuona village. On the junction of the two villages, on the steep Nemunas’ shore (that used to be as much as 8-10 m high); there was a mound here that was guarded in the North and South by Nemunas.

Accoding to archeologists, Guogai – Piliuona mound and the settlement date back to the 3-4 cent. AB.

The ancient people that took up industry and animal breeding lived here until the 13 cent.

Services

Events and entertainment

  • Birštonas History museum, Vytauto str. 9, Birštonas, tel. (210)

  • Prienai region museum, F.Martišiaus str. 13, Prienai, tel. (249) 60379;

  • Skriaudžiai town open-air museum, tel. (249) 42222;

Catering

  • Restaurant “Sėklytė”, Prienų str. 7, Birštonas, tel. (210) 65800;

  • Cafe “Guogis”, Tylioji 12, Prienai, tel. (249) 52541;

  • “Lithuanian meals”, Vytauto str. 23, Prienai, tel. (249) 51403;

Accommodation

  • Hotel “Koras”, J.Tumo-Vaižganto str. 13a, Birštonas, tel. (210) 56209;

Useful contacts

Birštonas
  • Police, Jaunimo str. 2, tel. 02, (210) 65537;

  • Birštonas municipality, Jaunimo str. 2, tel. (210) 65553;

  • Nemunas loops regional park, Tylioji str. 1, tel. (210) 65610;

Prienai
  • Medical center, tel. 03, (249) 51203;

  • Police, tel. 02, (249) 60353;

  • Prienas region municipality, Laisvės a. 12, tel. (249) 61105;

4th day (23.07, Monday)

Duobakalnis – Kaunas – Zapyškis

The length of the route – 53,5 km (gravel – 9,5 km, asphalt – 44 km): Duobakalnis –15– Vaišvydava –7,5– Pažaislis –11– Kaunas center –6,5– Marvelė –9,5– Kačerginė –4– Zapyškis (sleeping place near Zapyškis church).

The ensemble of the monastery of Pažaislis

This is a unique building ensemble of 17-18 cent., one of the most valuable monuments of baroque style not only in Lithuania, but in the whole north-eastern Europe. It has the status of the landscape architectural reserve. The complex of the buildings is made up of the baroque church, monasteries, big gate arches, forestry, a well, a tower, and other assisting buildings. The harmony of impressive surrounding and beautiful architecture will inspire everyone who will visit this place. About 140 different-size frescoes decorate the ensemble of the buildings.

From the old times, the monastery is famous for the respected picture of the believers. After 50 years, in July the 15th, 2000, one of the most precious relics of the 17 cent., the picture of God’s mother was returned to its historical place once again. Before, this picture was called “The mother of beautiful love with the baby”.

Kačerginė

It started to become famous as a resting place in the beginning of the 20 cent. In the summer of 1906, Jonas Biliūnas (1879-1907) was spending time here. He wrote his famous story “Brisiaus galas” here. From 1961 till 1967 (Mokyklos str.,34), there lived and died Vincas Mykolaitis-Putinas (1893-1967), the writer and academician. Now in the house of the writer, there is a memorial exposition.

Zapyškis

The old sight of Zapyškis is the church of red bricks that is right on the shore of Nemunas river. Historical sources state that the church was built in the 16 cent.. before the year 1578. Poilas, the son of Jonas Sapiega, inherited the settlement of Zapyškis and built the church, which was rebuilt several times later. At the moment, the church of Zapiškis is one of the brightest monuments of the late gothic in Lithuania.

Services

Events and entertainment

  • M.Žilinskas art gallery, Nepriklausomybės square 12, (27) 204906;

  • T.Ivanauskas zoology museum, Laisvės a. 106, (27) 229675;

  • M.K.Čiurlionis art museum, V.Putvinskio str. 55, (27) 204446;

  • Vytautas the Great museum, K.Donelaičio str. 64, (27) 229606;
  • Devil museum, V.Putvinskio str. 64, (27) 203514;

  • Lithuanian aviation museum, Veiverių str. 132, (27) 295547;

  • Pažaislis architecture ansamble, Kauno jūros av. 31, (27) 756485;

  • Zoology park, Radvilėnų road 21, (27) 730640;

Catering

  • Lithuanian meals, M.Daukšos str. 23, Kaunas, tel. (27) 227068;

Accommodation

  • A.Peimienės homestead, Jadagonių village, Zapyškis, tel. (27) 542386, 221817, mob. (285) 78599;
  • V.Sedleckienės homestead, Papiškių village, Zapyškis., tel. (27) 542244, mob. (298) 70044;

  • www.hotel.lt

Kaunas
  • Guest house, Prancūzų str. 59, (27) 748972;

  • Youth hostel, Poilsio str. 12, (27) 543373;
  • Hotel “Takioji Neris”, Donelaičio str. 27, tel.(27) 204224;

  • Hotel “Kaunas”, Laisvės str.79, tel. (27)323110;

Bicycle repair and rent services

Kaunas

  • Gintarius bicycle shop, I.Kanto 6, Kaunas, tel. (27) 208765;

  • “Dainava” (JSC “Terama”), Taikos av. 90, Savanorių av. 66, tel. (27) 760326, 207420;

  • “Bicycle center”, Jonavos 160, tel. (27) 731502;
  • “Du ratai”, M.Daukšos 24, Chemijos av.”, P.Lukšio 66, tel. (27) 201752, 350085, 728693;

  • “Bicycle and motorbikes shop”, Svirbygalos 47, (near Aleksotas market place), (27) 291781;

  • “Juzė”, Savanorių 225, (27) 730591;

  • “Vygonė”, Savanorių 153, (27) 720214;

Useful contacts

Kaunas
  • Tourism information center (TIC), A.Mickevičiaus 36/Laisvės a. 40, tel. (27) 323436;
  • TIC, “Mūsų Odisėja”, M.K.Čiurlionio 15, tel. (27) 220426;

  • Kauno marios national park, Miškininkų 2, Vaišvydava, Kaunas region., tel. (27) 383070;

  • Kaunas town municipality, Laisvės a. 96, Kaunas, tel. (27) 425088, 426058 – mayor, 422467 – environmental protection department;
  • Kaunas bus station, tel. (27) 227942;

  • Kaunas train station, tel. (27) 221093;

  • Travel agency “Krantas Travel” www.krantas.lt, Kanto g. 22, tel. (27) 337258;

  • Security “Falck Security” www.falck-security.lt, Savanorių 192, tel. (27) 332191, (286) 50651;

  • Medical centre, tel. 03, (27) 452627;

  • Police, tel. 02, (27) 322811;

  • Kačerginė local administration, Savanorių av. 371, Kaunas, tel. (27) 569391;

  • Zapyškis local administration, Savanorių pr. 371, Kaunas, tel. (27) 542217;

5th day (24.07, Tuesday)

Zapyškis – Šilinė

The length of the route – 60 km (gravel – 10,5 km, asphalt – 49,5 km): Zapyškis – 13,5 – Mikytai –1,5– ferry through Nemunas (for cyclist – 1 Lt) – Vilkija –12,5– Seredžius –10– Veliuona –11– Raudonė –11,5- Šilinė (sleeping place near Šilinė information center).

Vilkija

In the historical sources, Vilkija is mentioned from 1430 09 22. In 1450, the documents of Gdansk’s traders mention Vilkija’s customhouse, the first in Lithuania, by the way. The customhouse stimulated Vilkija’s growth. At this time, not only water, but also a land trading road form Vilnius to Karaliaučius went through Vilkija. In the 16 cent., Vilkija’s district was formed; it became the estate of a grand duke. Later, Vilkija acquired the rights of a town. Even form afar, on a high Nemunas’ shore, you could see two redbrick towers of the neogothic church of St. Jurgis.

Seredžius

There is an interesting mound called the hill of Palemon, where the Roman grand duke Palemon, who fled from Neronas’s persecution in the 1st century AC, is buried. This legend is mentioned in the chronicles of Lithuania. Contemporary historians think that there stood a castle of Pieštvė on a hill that defended itself from the crusaders in 1293 – 1363. On a small hill, there is the estate of Seredžius. 1 km to the west of the town, there stands XIX century classical Belveder’s palace.

Veliuona

The river Nemunas used to be the nature’s border with the Prussian lands, where already in the 13 cent., the crusaders’ order was established. Wanting to defend themselves from the attackers, the Lithuanians built castles. One of those castles was the castle of Viliuona that stood on a mound where the rivers Nemunas and Viliuona joint. Now, this mound is called the grave of Gediminas. In 1337, the crusaders had built their own castle there, called Bajerburg. It was supposed to help them destroy Viliuona and open up the ways to the land’s depth. It stood on the hills of Pilaičiai, to the West from Viliuona. Even nowadays you could see those little hills for centuries having polished by the floods caused by Nemunas. In 1412, Vytautas built a new stone castle in Viliuona on a mound that is called the Castle Rock and that is in the West from the mound of Gediminas’ grave. During the late centuries, Viliuona used to be a quiet developing town that, in 1500, was granted the rights to be called Madgeburg. A monument of renaissance culture – built in 1636-1644 the church of St. Maria’s ascendance to heavens (rebuilt in 1887 and 1930). The estate of Viliuona, the monument of classical architecture of the beginning of the 19 cent., is the former Viluina’s farmstead with a park containing some rare species of trees; among them is the only in Lithuania the yellow tulip-tree.

The castle of Panemunė

The castle is situated on the high shore of Nemunas hidden between the trees.

The construction of its representative rooms has started in around the year 1604 by a forest trader J.Eperjesas, who moved from Hungary, and finished in about 1610. Žemaitija noblemen Geldaugai bought the castle in 1759 and rebuilt it in their way. It acquired some classical features. The castle and Galdaugai’s wealth got into the property of czar’s Russia’s treasury. In 1867, it became ruled over by a lord named Puslovkis. In 1925, the castle was sold in the auction. During the times of the World War II, it was harshly damaged and, in time, fell in at all.

During 1961-1962, the castle was reconstructed and its surrounding and the cascade system of the ponds were restored. On his trip along the Nemunas river in 1903, a famous Russian painter N.Rerich painted the castle.

The castle of Raudonė

After the battle of Žalgiris in 1410, the trade increased and the Nemunas’ feudists started getting rich very quickly. One of them, K.Kirsensteinas, even built a residence in Raudonė, which is now considered a civil building of the early renaissance of our country. However, up to these days, the walls of the first rooms had greatly changed. In the 18 cent., Raudonė got into the hands of Olendskiai. This renaissance castle ensemble with a closed yard turned into a castle with an open one. Around 1810, Olendskiai sold the castle to the earl P.Zubov who later reconstructed the interior. Zubov’s daughter Sofia rebuilt the castle again in 1854-1877, and it acquired neogothic featured. This very version of it we see today.

During the times of Nazis, it was severely damaged. In 1965, it was restored and added to a school. The castle is surrounded by an old park that has many unique species of trees, such as the Siberian fir, the cedar pine, and the gray walnut. The oak of Gediminas is one of the park’s sights.

Šilinė

The small museum is established in Šilinė’s reconstructed inn. It is interesting due to the modern concept that represents the mode of life and crafts of the old time near Nemunas’ inhabitants. Because the museum is designed, first of all, for the new generator, its exhibits are not decaying behind the glass, but rather allowed to be touched, taken into hands and tested. Here also established Nemunas region RP infocentre.

Regional Park of Panemunė

The park stretches along both shores of Nemunas (there are also 72 small rivers). The most picturesque valleys with the impressive gullies are near the rivers Armena, Kartupis, Nyka, and Nykutė. On dry slopes, there are some unique warm-liking plant communities left. In Gelgaudiškės Park, there grows the thickest pine-tree in Lithuania. Especially rich and interesting is the cultural heritage. It was discussed earlier describing the park settlements of Veliuona, Seredžiai, Raudonė, and Panemunė. Very interesting is the park settlement Plokščiai separated by the river-street.

Services

Events and entertainment

  • Veliuona castle;
  • Belvederis castle and park, Seredžius;
  • Raudonė castle and mill, castle tower;
  • Rock music festival, in the park of Raudonė castle, tel. (248) 72929, 71707;

Catering

  • Cafe “Dubysa”, Seredžius, tel. (248) 42362;
  • Cafe, Veliuona, tel. (248) 42915;

Accommodation

  • Romo and Eimanto Zaleckai homestead, Padubysis village, Vilkija, tel. (27) 252274, 560346, mob. (286) 33209;
  • V.Kringelienės homestead, Klausučių village., Seredžius, tel. (248) 43684, 43763;
  • J.Ramonienės homestead, Papiškių v., Veliuona, tel. (248) 42886, 51204;
  • S.Balsevičiaus homestead, Raudonė, tel. (248) 45367;
  • I.Kazakevičienės homestead, Raudonė, tel. (248) 45441;
  • Raudonė castle, Raudonė, tel. (248) 45445, 44491, mob. (298) 47928;

Useful contacts

  • Vilkijos local administation, Savanorių av. 371, Kaunas, tel. (27) 556332;
  • Panemunės regional park, S.Dariaus ir S.Girėno str. 98, Jurbarkas, tel. (248) 72956;

6th day (25.07, Wednesday)

The length of the route – 71.3 km (gravel – 4.2 km, asphalt – 67.1 km): Šilinė –4–Skirsnemunė –9– Jurbarkas –13– Smalininkai –13– Viešvilė –20– Vilkyškiai –6,5– Lumpėnai –4– Bitėnai –1,5– Rambynas hill.

Jurbarkas

Jurbarkas is situated on the right Nemunas’ shore, the junction of three rivers – Nemunas, Mituva, and Imsrė. It was first mentioned in 1259 in P. Duisburg’s chronicle, right after the crusaders had built Georgenborg castle here.

Places to visit:

  • The history museum of Jurbarkas, Vydūno str. 24, tel. (248) 52710
  • The mound of Bišpilis
  • The monument of Vytautas the Great (archit. V.Grybas, 1930)
  • The church of Holy Trinity (1907)

Smailininkai

In ancient times there lived pitch makers and they give the name to this place. But in 1422 year because of the Meln Peace agreement there was made the board through Smalininkai and then it was dependent to Ordain. There was built the port in this town in 1888.

Viešvilė

There is large forest in the surrounding. Also there are small lake and very nice park in Viešvilė. Not far away you can visit the mound. Viešvilė name was mentioned already in 1402. From ancient times there is small but cozy church. Viešvilė became the wood manufacturing center from the end of 19 century.

Vilkyškiai

Having shown respect to the resting Vydūnas, it is worth to go to Vilkyčiai and admire the left valuable urban set with the yard, built in 1770-71 evangelical church. The first church was built in 1561, but, in 1758, the Russians ruined it.

By the way, the plague of 1710 greatly emptied the villages of the eastern Prussians. After that a lot of colonists arrived here. This period was called the colonization of Zacburg people. In the center, there stands a small esthetical monument that the Austrian government provided in 1998. Nearby, there is an old monument dedicated to the perished in the WWI people of Vilkyčiai perish.

The pine-tree of witches

18 trunk pine is the nature’s monument. Interesting by, there are more strangely bedded trees in this region.

Šereitlaukis

Those who are interested in the history of the estate is recommended to turn to the gravel road and go to Šereitlaukis. There are quite a lot of buildings of a farmer baron Conrad fon Dreseler’s estate – a distillery, a stable, a warehouse, servant’s rooms with decorative elements, such as typical to this land wooden columns. In 1907 hundreds of stallions were sold in Šereitlaukis. Mostly high class Arabic horses was held here. This is an impressive set testifying about the rich farmer life. During the times of independence (before the war), a walking boarder point and a customhouse used to be here.

A modern view of Šereitlaukis is quite terrible. Local inhabitants are gone; only newcomers (colonists) from the Great Lithuania. Industrial culture also made its harm – former fashionable buildings are bulked by the worthless constructions, sheds and barracks from all the sides. Undoubtedly, the Soviet occupation had an impact on the downfall of the Lithuanian mentality. However, nowadays, this Lithuanian Shanghai is worth visiting.

Nearby, there is a mound, the hat of Napoleon. Now, there exists a legend that it was formed by the soldiers of Napoleon’s army who poured it with their hats.

Bitėnai

Settled near Rambynas the village of Bitėnai meets travelers with a huge colony of starks in the summer time. In one of the local farmstead, there live not less than 5 families of them. Interestingly, this colony settled in farmstead where, during the German reign, youth center used to be.

The most important place in Bitėnai is the reconstructed farmer printing-house of Martynas Jankus. There is rather modest exposition about this important to the Lithuanian history person’s life. Working as the head of the Little Lithuania’s resume committee, Martynas played a decisive role in the revolt of 1923. The building is renovated and invites you with shining from afar lights.

Rambynas

“Standing on the other shore Rambynas is barely 150feel high (47m), it is held a high and holly rock by Lithuania’s’ specialists. Separated from the river only by a narrow border, Rambynas looks naked and upright…From very Smolensk and Moscow, here came grand dukes and kings with sacrificial gifts that they put on the cult stone. Having touched the stone, the sick got healed. Just married couples climbed the rock praying for the blessing for their marriage; women in child-breath thanked for the recovery and asked the blessing for newborn. Still in the beginning of the century, there was not a single wedding ceremony that passing by did not climb the rock in order to pray by the stone.”

Otto Glagau – the German traveler and journalist of the beginning of the XIX century.

Services

Events and entertainment

  • K.Glinskis museum, Vydūno str. 45, Jurbarkas, tel. (248) 53522;
  • Jurbarko region history museum, Vydūno str. 24, tel. (248) 52710;

Catering

Jurbarkas
  • B.Lendraitienės cafe, S.Dariaus and S.Girėno str. 96, tel. (248) 52204;
  • Karšuva”, V.Kudirkos str. 11, tel. (248) 52763;
  • “Prieplauka”, Tilžės str. 15, tel. (248) 54262;
  • “Aidas”, Vytauto Didžiojo str. 3a, tel. (248) 54310;

Accommodation

  • O.Norvaišienės homestead, Smalininkai, (248) 56415;
  • Guest house “Smalininkai”, tel. (248) 56415;
  • I.Banaitienės homestead, Viešvilė, tel. (248) 49480;
  • L.Greičiuvienės homestead, Upelio str. 2, Viešvilė, (248) 49365;
  • Hostel “Agirija”, K.Donelaičio 10, Panemunė, tel. (241) 42377, mob. (286) 48660;

Bicycle repair and rent center

  • Bicycle shop and repair, Valančiaus 4, Jurbarkas, tel. (248) 71660;

Useful contacts

  • Tourism information center, Dariaus and Girėno str. 94, Jurbarkas, tel. (248) 51204;
  • Medical center, Jurbarkas, tel. 03, (248) 53186;
  • Police, tel. 02, (248) 51253;
  • Jurbarkas region municipality, Dariaus and Girėno str. 96, tel. (248) 71605;
  • Rambynas regional park, Lumpėnai, Pagėgiai region., tel. (241) 42810;

7th day (26.07, Thursday)

Rambynas hill – Ventė horn

The length of the route– 78 km (gravel – 22 km, asphalt – 56 km): Rambynas hill –6,5– Mikytai –4– Pagėgiai –9– Rukai –6,5– Usėnai – 12 – Leitgiriai –4– Kantariškės –15– Pagryniai –3– Šilutė –9– Rusnė –9– Uostadvaris – by ferry boat to persikėlimas laivu į Ventės ragą (kaina 2-3 Lt) – nakvynė poilsiavietėje prie ornitologinės stoties.

Pagėgiai

It is named after Gėdė river that takes its start in the meadows of the Old Nemunas.

The village started to grow only in 1875, when Klaipėda – Tilžės railway was led through Pagėgiai.

During 1929 – 1930, the 3-story new beautiful stone gymnasium was built. It was called after Kristijonas Donelaitis in 1935.

Rukai.

Rukai village is near Kamana river. Contemporary stone (red – brick) church was built in 1886.

Other than that, Rukai had the old Lutheran chapel that was supported and financed by the American synod.

Usėnai.

Usėnai village, the former estate, is 5 km to the North from Plaškiai. Veržė river flows through it.

In the old times, Usėnai used to be a more powerful administrational center with the market square and several shops.

Plaškiai

The village is in the right Gedė’s shore. It is known from the 17 cent. In 1793, Plaškiai church was baptized. In 1896, the new stone church was put up on its place.

It was an important spiritual regional center.

After it got independence, one local inhabitant tore off the roof of a house, however, that did not prevent him from becoming the major of Šilutė.

During WWI, Plaškiai was greatly damaged.

Rusnė

Rusnė is the old fishermen’s settlement. It was first mentioned in the end of the 14 cent. The Lithuanians and the Kuršiai inhabited it. Prussian grand duke Albert’s order to hold services in the Lithuanian and Kuršiai languages testify about that. For many centuries, along with Klaipėda’s region, Rusnė belonged to the German feudalistic that tried to “germanize” the local people, but failed to eliminate Lithuanian roots. The street of Žveju (fishermen) is held a monument of the old Rusnė’s architecture. It is a former village of Skirvytėlė, now belonging to the city of Rusnė. You could also see living and industrial buildings of the end of 19 cent. beginning of the 20 cent architecture typical to the coastal territory. The walls of the houses are usually boarded and full of writings. The roofs are covered with reed or with tiles. In 1907, water station was built in Rusnė. This station is considered a symbol of human persistency in the battle with the element the Nemunas’ waters. The first banks in the flooded fields were put up in 1888 after the catastrophe of flood. However, the low delta’s places were not enough to dry up the land. Water stations were still needed. They were designed to pump up the dampness. Now, this station is restored and turned into a museum. The old station’s steam engine in a unique exhibit.

Services

Events and entertainment

  • Martynas Jankus memorial museum, Bitėnų v., near Rambynas hill, tel. (241) 42811;
  • Zudermanas museum, quondam Macikai war prisoners camps“Stalag Luft VI” and Soviet concentration camp place, Macikai v. (3 km. from Šilutė), tel. (241) 53002;
  • Šilutė manor, Lietuvininkų str. 2, Šilutė;
  • Šilutės museum, tel. (241) 62209;
  • Polders museum, Uostadvaris, tel. (241) 58359;
  • Etnographical museum- homestead (K.Banys), tel. (241) 58169;

Catering

  • Vilkėnai mill (hotel-restourant), Švėkšna, Šilutės region, tel. (241) 48371;
Šilutė
  • Bear restourant “Ventės ragas”, Lietuvininkų str. 43, tel. (241) 52195;
  • “Žibintas”, Vydūno 2, tel. (241) 52463;
  • Cafe “Gilija”, Vytauto str. 15, Šilutė, tel. (241) 52572;
  • Bar “Žibai”, Miško str. 7, tel. (241) 53590, 52539;
  • “Senas židinys”, Lietuvininkų 41;

Accommodation

  • Homestead “Jotovila”, Pagėgiai, tel. (241) 56551;
  • S.Knapkio homestead, Pagėgiai, tel. (241) 58142;
  • Šilutė tourism hotel, Lietuvininkų str. 72, Šilutė, tel. (241) 51804;
  • Hotel “Nemunas”, Lietuvininkų str. 36, Šilutė, (241) 53002, 52078;
  • Jūratės Bandzienės homestead, Lietuvininkų str. 10, Šilutė, tel. (241) 51344;
  • Vilkėnai mill (hotel restourant), Švėkšna, Šilutės region, tel. (241) 48371;
  • Šalkauskai homestead, Lakštingalų 3, Rusnė, tel. (241) 58328, mob. (286) 12397;
  • Drobnai homestead, Lakštingalų 2, Rusnė, tel. (241) 58189, mob. (287) 74687;
  • Knapkiai homestead, Skirvytėlės 9, Rusnė, tel. (241) 58142;
  • Gečai homestead, Lakštingalų 4, Rusnė, tel. (241) 58174;
  • Ventė tourism centre, Šturmai, Šilutės reg., tel. (241) 44534;
  • Resting place “Minija”, Kintai, tel. (241) 47375;

Bicycle repair and market services

  • Market centre “Litorina”, Lietuvininkų 58, Šilutė;
  • R.Jaruškevičiaus company (second-hand bicycles and their parts ), Dariaus and Girėno 9, Šilutė, tel. (241) 62223;

Useful contacts

  • Medical centre, Pagėgiai, tel. 03, (241) 57329;
  • Pagėgiai police, tel. 02, (241) 57350;
  • Pagėgiai municipality, tel. Vilniaus str. 9, tel. (241) 57294;
  • Šilutė medical centre, Šilutė, tel. 03, (241) 62060;
  • Pagėgiai police, tel. 02, (241) 78131;
  • Šilutė region municipality, Dariaus and Girėno str. 1, Šilutė, tel, (241) 79227;
  • Nemunas delta regional park direction, Lietuvininkų 10, Šilutė, tel. (241) 75050;

8th day (27.07, Friday)

Ventė horn – Klaipėda

The length – 45,5 km (gravel – 19,5 km, asphalt – 26 km): Ventė horn –10– Kintai –7– Svencelė –4– Dreverna –3– Vilhelm channel –10– Kairiai ground –11,5– Klaipėda center.

Ventė horn

It is famous for the station of birds’ ringing. There is also a small ornithological museum. During migration, a few hundred thousands of the feathered cross the nazi.

Kintai

Fishermen’s settlement that during the 18-19 cent. was famous for its market places. Even the Evangelical church built in 1705 remained. Unfortunately, none of the seaside settlements can be proud of the fish now. There were times when lots of various kinds of fish were caught here. But now many of them are either disappearing or are on the verge of it. One of the reason because of the harsh exploitation of the lagoon.

Dreverna

Dreverna is another fish trading center, known from the 13 cent. Its sights are the original and posh weathercocks that still exist nowadays.

Vilhelm channel

Its length is 24 m, size – 30 m. it is very much liked by the lovers of the fish because of the sometimes-rich catch. It was dug when Klaipėda was under the Prussian king Frydrich Vilhelm III. At that time, rafts were drifted to Klaipėda’s port through Nemunas. However, bad weather conditions prevent them. For that reason, in 1863, the digging works were started. The channel was finished during I870-1871French-Prussian war by the French prisoners.

The ground of Kairiai

This is the heritage of the military army, now owned by the Lithuanian troops. Scientists have found a lot of nature’s values here. That is why two botanic reserves are established here – Kliošiai and Lūžija.

Services

Events and entertainment

  • Vydūnas museum, Kintai, tel. (241) 47379;

  • Ornithology museum (L.Jezerskas), Ventės ragas, tel. (241) 44515;

Klaipėda
  • Marine museum and dolphinarium, Smiltynės str. 3, (26) 391101;

  • Nature museum, Smiltynės str. 10, (26) 391177;

  • History museum of Lithuania Minor, Didžioji vandens str. 6, (26) 410523;

  • Clock museum, Liepų str 12, (26) 410412;

  • Simon Dach house, Jūros 7, tel. (26) 311481;

  • Restaurant – jazz club “KURPIAI”, Kurpių 1a, tel. (26) 410555, (299) 28136;

  • Bar-gallery “PĖDA”, Turgaus 10, tel. (26) 410710, [email protected];

  • Entertainment centre “PARADOX” www.paradox.lt, Minijos 2, tel. (26) 496849;

  • Cinema theatre “ŽEMAITIJA”, H.Manto 31, tel. (26) 314090;

Accommodation

Klaipėda
  • Campsite “Žuvėdra” www.techas.lt/zuvedra/, Giruliai, Klaipėda, tel. (26) 490105, 385828, mob. (285) 36148, [email protected];

  • Hostel of Klaipėda youth tourism centre, Šlaito 14, Giruliai, tel. (26) 490106;

  • Klaipėda sport health centre, Smiltynės str. 13, tel. (26) 391167;

  • Palva”, Smiltynės g. 19, tel. (26) 391155;

  • Klaipėda”, Naujoji Sodo str. 1, tel. (26) 394372;

  • Lūgnė” www.pajuris.lt, Galinio Pylimo 16, tel. (26) 411884;

  • Pajūris” www.pajuris.lt, Šlaito 18a, Giruliai, tel. (26) 490093;

  • Bed and Breakfast (B&B), Litinterp, S.Šimkaus 21-4, tel. (26) 411814;

Bicycle repair, market and rent services

Klaipėda
  • Panther dviračiai”, Turgaus sq. 23 (near Old market place), tel. (26) 412038;

  • Dviračiai”, Turgaus sq. 25 (near Old market), tel. (26) 411949;

  • Dviračių centras”, Taikos av. 78, tel. (26) 342601;

  • Dviračių centras”, Šilutės pl. 23a (8 warehouse), t./f. (26) 383349;

  • Sporto prekės”, Tiltų str19, tel. (26) 217264;

  • Atletas”, Turgaus str. 3, tel. (26) 310689;

  • Jovaras”, Lietuvininkų sq. 4, tel. (26) 212633;

  • Juozapas Paulauskas, Nidos str. 76, tel. (26) 279852;

  • VšĮ “DU RATAI” (bicycle rent), Taikos pr. 42-3, tel. (26) 380714, [email protected], www.dviratis.lt ;

Useful contacts

Klaipėda
  • Tourism information centre, Tomo 2, tel. (26) 412181, [email protected];

  • Bicycles information centre “dvirINFO” www.dviratis.lt, Taikos av. 42-3, Klaipėda, tel. (26) 380714, [email protected],

  • Curonian Spit national park’s information centre in Smiltynė, Smiltynės str. 11, tel. (26) 391179;

  • European information Centre, Turgaus str. 8 (Klaipėdos t. smunicipality library), tel. (26) 314722, [email protected];

  • Travel agency “Krantas Travel” www.krantas.lt, Lietuvininkų a. 5, tel. (26) 395111, Teatro a. 5, tel. (26) 395211;

  • AB “Smiltynės perkėla”, 1st passing place – Žvejų 8; 2nd passing place – Nemuno 8, tel. (26) 367003;

  • Falck Security www.falck-security.lt, Šermukšnių 26, tel. (26) 485548, (286) 50651;