Capital of Lithuania: Vilnius

The awareness of Vilnius, the capital of Lithuania, is so small that even the country's development agency has prepared a campaign that takes the situation.
Actually, this is not the first time. The Lithuanian development agency Go Vilnius, based on the fact that few people know the location of the city, signed an award-winning campaign called "Vilnius-G-point of Europe" in 2018 and completed the slogan as "nobody knows where it is, but if you find its place, it is surprising". The motto of the new campaign of Go Vilnius, who does not compromise his sense of humor, is: "Vilnius: No matter where you think it is, it is incredible!" In this context, remarkable banners depicting Vilnius in fantastic worlds were hung in London, Liverpool and Berlin (below).
According to a 2019 study, only 5 percent of the British and 3 percent of the Germans know more than the name and estimated location of this Baltic city. So you? Let's take a quick tour towards this unknown land where 730 thousand people live.
SMALL CITY, BIG HISTORY
When Vilnius was the capital in the 14th century, Lithuania was one of the largest states in Europe, ruling over Belarus, Poland, Ukraine and part of Russia. In 1569 he merged with Poland and formed the crown of Lehistan-Lithuania. The crown was torn after 200 years. Lithuania came under Russian sovereignty until it became independent at the end of the First World War. However, Vilnius has maintained its multinational identity for these long centuries; It was the home of Lithuanians, Poles, Germans, Slavs, Jews. But in 1940, Nazi and later Soviet occupations changed this natural sociocultural structure. Demir Kurt remained speechless until Lithuania regained independence on March 11, 1990.
WHAT SHOULD I SEE IN VILNIUS?
It would be a mistake to think, "Vilnius is a tiny city, there are few places to see." The first stop in the city, which was once known as the "Jerusalem of the north", is the Gediminas Hill, which was built in the 14-15th centuries and where you can watch the whole city. You can visit the Vilnius Cathedral at the foot of the Cathedral and the Bell Tower right next to it, the 600-kilometer chain of people created against the Soviet Union, the point where the Baltic Road begins, the Palace of the Lithuanian Grandparents. The old city area, which is on the UNESCO World Heritage List, consists of narrow streets that cross each other. In this region, most baroque-style churches built in the 16th-17th centuries are worth seeing. Do not miss the Three Cross Hill, Bernardine Garden, the only gate from the gates of the first city walls, the Dawn Gate, the Vilnius town hall, the magnificent library of Vilnius University with its frescoed halls, and the Presidential Palace.
UZUPİS: A “COUNTRY” IN THE CITY
A group of artists in Vilnius declared the Užupis region, where they worked / lived, on April 1, 1997, independent republics. Even today, it is not known who the idea came from, whether it was a April 1st joke or a product of performance art. Užupis, which hosts dozens of galleries and workshops, even has a 41-item constitution prepared in 20 different languages. You stamp your passport at the Užupis Information Center and greet the guardian angel statue, crossing the "border". While you are gone, join a "session" at Uzupio Kavine Bar, the "parliament" of the republic.
NEAR HISTORY OF VILNIUS
The traces of 70 thousand Jews and Soviets that were killed by the Nazis during the Second World War follow you in Vilnius. Small and Large ghettos, Museum of Genocide Victims, Choral Synagogue, Old Jewish Cemetery and the Spark of Hope statue and KGB Museum deserve a visit.
WHERE TO GO IN VILNIUS?
You can tour the Pilies Street in the old city and enter the design stores, browse the galleries and boutiques in Stikliai, one of the oldest and picturesque streets of the city, and take a break in cafes, restaurants and bars. In the city, which is an amber center, you can learn the story of this fascinating stone in jewelry stores, but better yet in the Amber Museum. For a more exciting activity, the balloon ride awaits you in the skies of the city.
WHAT TO EAT AND DRINK IN VILNIUS?
You may be wondering what are the dishes unique to Vilnius and what are they famous for ...

In Vilnius cuisine, potatoes and meat are leading. Potato sausage and meats with meatballs are local stars. Heavily cooked chicken leg, various cheeses, Lithuanian rye snack toast kepta duona, beet soup, boiled egg and beet-kefir soup served with potatoes, saltibarsciai, mushroom-shaped cookies, cheese cakes, pancakes with potatoes, veggie-meat-cheese pies, potatoes Kugelis, which is a kind of lasagna, has a lot of local flavor.
Source: Atlasdergisi

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