Travel to Lithuania – Episode 323

categories: europe travel

The Amateur Traveler talks to Katie Aune from about her recent trip to Lithuania.

Katie visited Lithuania as part of a year traveling through countries that were part of the former U.S.S.R. She spent much of her time in and around Vilnius, the capital. She visited in the Winter so did not get a chance to visit many of the countries 4,000 lakes.

Vilnius has one of the largest old towns in Europe. This small Baltic state was an important power in the 1300s as the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, which stretched all the way from the Baltic Sea to the Black Sea.

The tourism office of Vilnius has a audio guide you can rent that includes 70 different sites in the city. You can also get an museum card to get into a large number of the sites. Katie recommends some of the sites like museum of genocide and the Jewish Ghetto.

“I was surprised at how western it felt. People think of Lithuania and the other Baltic states as former Baltic states but the whole time they were part of the Soviet Union they felt they were being occupied by the Soviets. I didn’t really feel like I was in Eastern Europe.”

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Show Notes

Katie Going Global
Katie Aune
Five Favorite Things in Vilnius
Museum of Genocide Victims
National Museum of Lithuania on Wikipedia
National Museum of LIthuania
Hill of Crosses on Wikipedia
The Hill of Crosses
Into a Soviet Bunker
Domus Maria – TripAdvisor
Armenian Volunteer Corps
Birthright Armenia


Kathy on Travel to Xi’an, China – Episode 258
Jim on Travel to Puglia (Apulia) in Italy – Episode 322

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by Chris Christensen

Chris Christensen is the creator of the Amateur Traveler blog and podcast, and a co-host for This Week in Travel podcast.

One Response to “Travel to Lithuania – Episode 323”



I was in Lithuania in May 2008 as part of a Baltics trip (which your guest discourages) and it was nice. As it was late Spring I perhaps got to enjoy the weather a bit more than your guest.

In Vilnius I stayed in Domus Maria too. Great place – with a resident mascot teddy bear (at least in 2008)!

The bus network is excellent in the Baltics with frequent departures. Train, not so, though we took a train with a conductor resembling Boris Karloff.

Some things I think people should see:

– The Curonian Spit. This geological formation is shared with Russia (theoretically you can walk up till the border but I didn’t wish to be faced with menacing conscripts) and is a Lithuanian holiday destination (supposedly you can go swimming but it was too cold and anyway I wasn’t sure about the water). The woods made for a nice walk though I got lost with my friends
– Near Klaipeda I visited a former Soviet Missile Silo. That was awesome (if hard to get to – we rented a car and driver). Though we didn’t get shouted at by re-enactors

A friend also visited the Soviet Disneyland near Vilnius ( and liked it a lot. Though there were no rides – only statues from the Communist Era.

One warning I would give: if you don’t like potatoes, sour cream and dill… Lithuanian (and Baltic) food isn’t for you!

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