Architecture of Lithuania. Must see and must visit landmarks

Gediminas Tower, Vilnius

Location on the map:     Interesting facts:
» The octagonal high guard tower on top of the mountain is the only construction that remains of the castle built by Lithuanian King Gediminas and serving as a strong defensive construction. According to some sources, there were buildings already in the 13th century.
» In the late 18th century, the castle lost its strategic significance and started to deteriorate. Today, Gediminas’ Tower is a big three-floor building of rough natural stone and red brick with loopholes.
» It houses exhibits depicting Vilnius, armors, and archeological artifacts. You can also see models of castles and fortresses of the old times here.
» There is an observation platform upstairs, to which the ladder of 78 steps embedded in the wall leads.
» The colorful Lithuanian flag was first installed on the roof in 1919 as a state symbol. There is a good cafe.
» The urban services deforested plants around the tower. The mountain slid and could cause the destruction of the tower. Trees were planted on the hills.
» Every year, 150 thousand tourists visit the old tower to see the monument of medieval architecture and the symbol of the city.

Guggenheim Hermitage Museum, Vilnius

Location on the map:   Interesting facts: » American businessman Benjamin Guggenheim and his brother Solomon found the museum of modern art in the USA. Other centers built in other cities are similar to this one.
» The new building is located on the right bank of the Neris River in Vilnius. There is a cultural object on the new embankment, in the midst of skyscrapers of Vilnius City.
» In the Guggenheim Museum, there are several spacious rooms for exhibitions. One of them will serve as a constant exhibition.
» In the museum, you can see various pieces of art, including paintings, sculptures, and installations provided by the Guggenheim Museum in New York and the Russian State Hermitage.
» Architects paid special attention to the place where the exhibition dedicated to the Lithuanian Jews is organized. Most of the 200 thousand people of this nation died in the Second World War. The Center shows respect the dead this way.
» Colorful canvasses of local masters will occupy a special place in the gallery of the Vilnius Guggenheim Museum.
» You can see exhibits of visual art in a total area of 2 000 m2.

Presidential Palace, Vilnius

Location on the map:     Interesting facts:
» Christianity was adopted in 1387. The palace was built in commemoration of this event.
» A few centuries after, the garden that is notable for diverse flora was planted here.
» At different times, eminent nobles stayed here. There is a preserved engraving of the 19th century depicting the memorable defeat of Napoleon’s army.
» The exterior of the Presidential Palace in the Empire style demonstrates the value of nationhood and power.
» The rooms on the ground floor are well equipped. With it, the architectural style of late classicism has been preserved, as the furniture is primarily of red color.
» The interior of main halls was restored according to the archival data. Historical pieces of furniture have been preserved. The second level of the western part was rebuilt.
» At the weekend, the rite of changing the state flag is held by the honor guard. Soldiers of the patrol wear medieval armors.
» In 1997, the President moved to the new palace.
» The palace is divided into halls: Conference Hall, White Hall for official meetings, Blue Hall for personal meetings, Green Hall for the President and his assistants’ meetings, and the Presidential Room for general meetings.

St. Anne Church, Vilnius

Location on the map:     Interesting facts:
» The church is named after the Blessed Mother of the Virgin Mary. It was first mentioned in the historical chronicles in 1394.
» The exterior walls are plastered with red clay, which gives an impression that you see bricks of different shapes. Such an architectural style is called “Flamboyant”.
» You can see a stigma on one of the walls but no one has deciphered these signs.
» The length and width of the small rectangular building are 22 m and 10 m correspondingly. The facade is divided into 3 parts. The symmetry of the building is represented by equally tall elegant towers.
» Rectangles with crossing lines stretch from the ledge and create a rope ornament. Their edges depict a hammered vane, a cross and the Sun. There are only eight long lancet windows on the side thin walls. The ceiling is upheld by decorative crescent lance-shaped stone towers.
» The interior is quite modest: light walls without paintings, several icons, and the altar with a wooden cross.
» Napoleon’s Army burnt the wooden utensils during their attack. Although, the Emperor dreamed of “transporting the church to Paris on his palms”.

St. Nicholas Church, Vilnius

Location on the map:     Interesting facts:
» Originally, the church was used by foreign merchants and craftsmen. It had been built by German architects for 5 years (since 1382).
» According to the documents, it was blessed in 1514.
» Then, a bell tower and a stone fence were built.
» The exterior is quite plain. The small rectangular temple has thick walls of red brick. There are no towers.
» The entrance is made of decorative shaped brick. There are niches of different heights at the sides of the pediment. The cross beam of the window is curved.
» But its interior is rich with lots of moldings and sculptures. At the beginning of the 16th century, the fire damaged the interior.
» In front of the church, there is the statue of St. Christopher with the baby in his hands. The engraving on the pediment depicts the same.
» Four octagonal pillars uphold soffits. They are made of bricks that rounds pillars.
» In the church, there are 3 altars, each of which is decorated with statues of saints. There is the convex statue of the Mother of Sorrows to the right. Sculptures of babies alternate with columns.
» The church is named after St. Nicholas, the Christian patron of sailors and merchants.

St. Peter and St. Paul Church, Vilnius

Location on the map:     Interesting facts:
» The commander of the Lithuanian troop bequeathed to bury him under the threshold of the church. He built it at his own expense. The construction began in 1668.
» 100 years later, the gravestone was struck by lightning. Then, the Hetman was buried in accordance with the Christian tradition. The ledger was cemented in one of the church stones.
» Italian masters building the church added a pleasing view to the interior by placing over 2 thousand gypsum statues. The white color dominates and provides a sense of the huge space.
» The altar image of the 18 century is special. The painting depicts terrible scenes of the plague. The sculpture of the Death and St. Christopher stands out among other sculptures.
» The big prolonged crystal chandelier is made of fancy metal items. Convex massive bas-reliefs resemble elephants’ heads.
» The church has the shape of the Latin cross. The facade is framed with two towers. The temple resembles a medieval castle with its exterior. Round columns are bulky from below and crowned with patterned molding from above. There is a dome with a lantern above the main entrance.
» The church was named after saint followers of Christ's teachings, Peter and Paul.

St. Teresa Church, Vilnius

Location on the map:     Interesting facts:
» The church consists of former buildings of the wooden monastery and the chapel. The total area is 84 440 m2.
» Then, the stone church was built at the expense of the nobles in 1630. Marble of different colors, stone, and sandstone from Sweden were used.
» The church was blessed under the name of St. Teresa, the nun who contributed much to the foundation of the Secular Order of Discalced Carmelites. Not to worry about the afflicted, the city authorities invited maidservants and carmelitess.
» When the building was being reconstructed, the architect built a bell tower. Interior and exterior walls, as well as the ceiling, are decorated with picturesque sculptures and frescoes.
» The exterior of the church is asymmetric. There is a three-tier bell tower at one side and temple rooms linked with hallways at the other side.
» There are 9 altars made in different architectural styles and colors inside. They are decorated with gilt and gypsum sculptures. Side altars depict saint apostles.
» Frescoes depict the moments of St. Teresa’s life. One of them shows Teresa with the bleeding heart.
» There are a lot of paintings and even niches with sculptures under the dome.

Vilnius Cathedral, Vilnius

Location on the map:     Interesting facts:
» The temple of God was built at the site of the Pagan temple, which is reflected in the masonry of the 13th century.
» The nobles were crowned in the old Vilnius Cathedral. The eminent nobles are buried in underground tombs (there are over 20 tombs). Nowadays, public ceremonies are held here.
» Over the years of its existence, the building was repeatedly destroyed in a fire and rebuilt. The cathedral has gained the highest status, a small basilica.
» The facade is upheld by 6 columns. The walls are faced with sandstone and varicoloured marble. The roof is crowned with the statues of St. Stanislav, St. Helen with a gilded cross, and Casimir. They were canonized for their godly deeds. There are gypsum casts of evangelists with animals in the niches.
» You can see drawings of apostles healing the sick above the main entrance. On the pediment, you can see the offering of Noah. The painting depicts the altar with a burning offering and the members of his family at the sides. There are the statues of prophets Abraham and Moses.
» All the installations date back to the end of the 18th century. The interior walls are decorated with frescoes and paintings of the 16th-19th centuries. One of them depicts crucified Jesus.

Vilnius TV Tower, Vilnius

Location on the map:     Interesting facts:
» There is a high tower on the river bank. There is a broadcasting center in it.
» The concrete stem of the tower is 190 meters high. The metal spire with a device receiving radio waves is 136 meters high. It was brought into service in January 1981. Six years have passed since the beginning of the construction.
» Its weight is 25 tons and total area is 3 355 m2. The round foundation has a diameter of 38 m. It serves administrative purposes.
» You can admire the panorama at the restaurant that is located on the 118th floor (65 m from the ground). The high-speed lift will take you to it for 45 seconds. You can also go up the stairs of 917 steps to reach it.
» There is also an observation rotary platform. Its full turn takes an hour. You can see constructions at a distance of 50 km. The observation platform is glazed.
» Traditionally, the skyscraper is decorated as the Christmas tree. It is decorated with garlands, each of which is 170 m long and which together weighs over a thousand kilos. The latest novelty is colorful lasers shining horizontally and downwards and used instead of lights.
» Near the TV Tower, there is a historic park that is famous for satellite antennas of extraordinary design.

Vilnius railway station, Vilnius

Location on the map:     Interesting facts:
» The Vilnius Railway Station was opened in 1862. The maintenance-and-repair station was built in 1884.
» The appearance of the first railroad train dates back to September 1860. The modern railway station is cream. It was built in 1950. By the way, materials from the old construction were used. Over the years of its existence, the building and its facade were reconstructed.
» The Lithuanian Road Administration Authority settled here.
» The construction has a range of developed infrastructures. It is quite small but comfortable and it is easy to find the way here. There is a ceremonial hall in the central part.
» In the Lithuanian Railway Museum, you can see the model of the building and railway lines attached to the building. You should also pay your attention to the reduced models of Lithuanian landmarks.
» The exhibition is also interesting because it is interactive. You should put a token in the machine and figurines will move.
» You can visit a restaurant and a pavilion with snacks. There is a big supermarket on the basement floor.
» You can learn the details on the route of railway transport on online stands. There are five platforms in the railway station. You can enter the first one right from the building and other platforms via the terminals.
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