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Best attractions in Vilnius: Top 25

This small, incredibly beautiful and European-looking city has its own charms. Tourists should definitely see the sights of Vilnius, walk through the cobblestone streets, and listen to the city’s musicians. There is peace and tranquility everywhere. The city is a popular sightseeing mecca in Lithuania, and there are plenty of interesting artefacts to see. There is much to see in Vilnius for travelers who are interested in both modern and historical architecture.

What to see in Vilnius

Describing the old city, you can’t help but briefly list the main attractions of Vilnius, because it, like most historic centers of European capitals, concentrates the main iconic places.

1. Old Town

One of the streets of Old Town in Vilnius

When choosing hotels in Vilnius, pay attention to the Old Town. Here you can settle in the best of them, an invaluable bonus is the best attractions of Vilnius in walking distance. You can start to see them from the St. Gates and, moving eastward to Medininkai Castle, see all the beauties one by one.

2. Town Hall

The main facade of the City Hall on City Hall Square in Vilnius Old Town

What to see in Vilnius in 1 day if you come to the Lithuanian capital for a short time? The classic town hall building is of architectural and historical interest. It once housed the city archives, treasury, courtrooms, and the cellars were used to hold prisoners. In the 18th century the building was demolished and a new one was erected in its place, which became the center of cultural life. Today foreign delegations are welcomed here, and ceremonial meetings and awards and prizes are given.

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3. Gedimin Avenue

Administrative and governmental institutions of Lithuania on Gedimin Avenue in Vilnius

The city’s central avenue is about 2 km long with limited traffic, and at night it is closed to traffic. It has a different atmosphere than the Old Town. It has a large number of modern buildings, stone structures from the Brezhnev era are on the sidewalks where street musicians sing, theaters, exhibitions, and stores open their doors. It is worthwhile to walk around the Avenue, but tourists prefer the alleys of Old Vilnius.

4. Piles Street

Piles Street at night

The oldest street in Vilnius, it is probably the most interesting to walk. If you’re lucky, you can find yourself in the epicenter of the festivities, visit the most famous fairs in the country, walk through museums and retail outlets. On the street there are interesting places worthy of separate attention.

5. Uzupis

The bronze sculpture of a trumpeting angel is the symbol of the Užupis quarter

It can be compared to a small Vatican, a kind of state within a state. Užupis high rating as a tourist destination is due to its identity. At the end of the last century the area became a favorite place for avant-garde artists, musicians, poets. Anything that could be bought for a small price was redesigned as a fashionable gallery. Bohemian Uzhupis, it should be noted, even acquired its own anthem, flag, constitution, and even an army.

6. Gedimin’s Tower

The Lithuanian national flag flying on the flagpole above the Gedimin's Tower

We’ll tell you where to go in Vilnius and where the most beautiful photos are taken. The Gediminas Tower on the Castle Hill overlooks the whole of Old Vilnius. The tower is of historic national importance, so the flag of the country flies on the flagpole. It can be climbed on foot or by cable car.

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7. The Auschros Gate

Ausros Gate is one of the most important attractions of Vilnius

This gate is as tall as a three-story house and is a Catholic shrine, a Lithuanian landmark. The chapel houses an image of the Great Mother of Mercy, revered by Catholics. The architecture of the building is fascinating: beautiful griffins on the main facade, a frieze above the bell tower, and icons in the chapel. The place is a pilgrimage site for Catholics the world over.

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8. Presidential Palace

The Presidential Palace in a two-story 19th century palace on Daukanto Square in Vilnius

It’s impossible to get inside many local attractions. We’ll tell you what to visit in Vilnius from places that are usually inaccessible to see, but are welcome here. The accessibility of the Presidential Palace is amazing. Anyone has the opportunity to visit the public events that are held here. It’s worth waiting for the Flag Replacement Ceremony - it’s really solemnly beautiful.

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9. Vilnius University

The Church of St. Johns in the Great Courtyard of Vilnius University

The university’s buildings occupy an entire block and are “diluted” with fountains, arches, cozy courtyards, and alleys. The central courtyard contains, in addition to the buildings, the St. John’s Bell Tower with an observation platform on top. The university library, with its frescoes, is particularly beautiful. Adam Mickiewicz, Taras Shevchenko, Yanka Kupala and other famous figures once studied here.

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10. Radziwill Palace

Radziwill Palace on Vilniaus Street Sigitas Jakucionis

Many tours in Vilnius lead here. The wealth of the Radziwill family was in huge numbers, they owned about 9 palaces in the city. The palace in the Old Town is the only one that survived; today it belongs to the National Art Museum. The exhibition, divided into 3 parts, presents portraits, icons, archaeological finds, art objects and more.

11. Palace of the Lithuanian Grand Dukes

National Museum in the Palace of Lithuanian Grand Dukes in Vilnius

If you are interested in history, you should plan a visit to this place when you go on a trip. Once upon a time the palace was the residence of many Lithuanian rulers. Thanks to them the castle complex was constantly expanding, and by the 16th century it looked like a beautiful Renaissance building. Today there are 2 expositions in authentic interiors telling about the history of the Palace.

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12. St. Stanislaus Cathedral

St. Stanislaus Cathedral is the main and most beautiful Catholic cathedral in Vilnius

Significant to Catholics, the cathedral at Zamkova Mountain was the coronation site of the Grand Dukes of Lithuania. The cathedral’s vaults contain the tombs of famous Lithuanian rulers. Inside the cathedral it looks airy and light, and the interior is decorated with paintings and sculptures. Particularly interesting is the high bell tower with a clock, which was part of the defensive fortifications.

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13. Church of Saints Peter and Paul

Church of Peter and Paul in the night illumination at the beginning of Antakalnie street in Vilnius

This church is called a gem of Baroque. This only becomes clear once you go inside. While the facade is restrainedly solemn, the interior dazzles with the wealth of allegories, the opulence of forms and the luxury of decoration. The dome and walls are decorated with stucco elements from which it is difficult to take your eyes away. Guides in Vilnius will tell you its tragic and interesting history.

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14. St. Anne’s Church and the Bernardine Church

The Bernardine Church and St. Anne's Church are some of the most popular attractions in Vilnius

The Gothic-style St. Anne’s Church is visible from anywhere in the city. The architectural masterpiece is the pediment and 3 graceful towers. The gallery and sacristy inside are inferior in beauty to the exterior of the facade. The imposing and austere building of Bernardine church was originally a part of the defensive wall, the preserved loopholes are a reminder of that today. Inside the church is equipped without excessive pathos, on the walls can be seen the remnants of biblical frescoes.

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15. St. Catherine’s Church

A general view of St. Catherine's Church in Vilnius Juliux

The luxurious Catholic church in Baroque style was built in the 17th century. The beautiful exterior of the building is luxurious inside as well. There are statues of white marble in the decoration of the interior, and on the walls and on the altar there are paintings with themes from the Bible. Classical music concerts are held here.

16. Church of St. Johns

Church of St. Johns and the 68-meter bell tower on the background of the Old Town buildings

The bell tower of the church with a six-meter cross is the best place from which you can see Vilnius from above. The view is not limited by nets, bars or glass. It is possible to walk to the height of 45 m or take a modern elevator. An interesting object at the top is the Foucault pendulum, which imitates the rotation of the Earth.

17. St. Casimir’s Church

St. Casimir's Church in the Old Town is an example of early Baroque Vilnius

Taking a trip back in time, you realize how much this church had to endure. It was used for different purposes, at one time it even served as a granary, and during the Soviet times it was a wine cellar and a museum of atheism. It was only at the end of the last century that the building was returned to the church and consecrated. The facade and interior are in Baroque style, the most interesting element is the dome made in the form of a crown.

18. Church of the Holy Spirit

The Church of the Holy Spirit is a temple at the Orthodox monastery in Vilnius

A beautiful church, near which it is always crowded. In the solemn interior, the three-tiered iconostasis, decorated with sculptures, columns and undulating eaves, catches the eye at once. The most interesting thing about it is the cave temple below the altar. The relics of the Vilna martyrs, who were later canonized, were once found here. There is a library attached to the church.

19. The Three Crosses Religious Monument

The Three Crosses Religious Monument in the city park on Bald Hill on the right bank of the Vilniale River

In the center of the capital, in Kalnų Park, there are 4 hills of different heights. The most noteworthy is the Three Crosses Mountain, crowned with a sculpture of three snow-white crosses reaching into the sky. There is more than one legend about their appearance. The monument, which was rebuilt after a series of destruction, is dedicated to the victims of Stalinist repressions. There is a viewing platform at the top of the mountain with a good overview.

20. National Museum of Lithuania

National Museum of Lithuania is a state historical museum in Vilnius

Another attraction in Vilnius, telling the whole history of the country from the first settlements to the creation of the state. The exhibits on display tell an interesting story of the formation of Baltic culture. There are interactive computer entertainments for children and adults as well.

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Vilnius sights: what else is there to see in Vilnius?

If you are not limited in time, it is worth paying more attention to interesting objects. In advance, browse through Vilnius attractions photos with names and descriptions and choose those that you think are worth a visit on a mandatory basis.

21. Lithuanian Art Museum

Facades of the Lithuanian Art Museum building in Vilnius Rimantas Lazdynas

The museum provides an overview of the largest art collection in the country. Geographically the museum covers a huge part of the territory of Lithuania, representing in many places its branches. The exhibition includes more than 2.5 thousand paintings dating from the XVI-XIX centuries, about 8 thousand drawings by artists from all over the world from the XV-XX centuries.

22. Museum of the victims of the genocide

Stone of memory with flowers and candles at the Museum of genocide victims in Vilnius

This museum building once belonged to the KGB, and during the war the Gestapo settled here. The museum collections are located in the basement and on two floors. Downstairs you can see the cells of prisoners with inscriptions on the walls, which, although repeatedly repainted, still keep their remnants. Special recommendations for tourists refer to the memorial stone, near which there are always flowers and candles burning in memory of the dead.

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23. Vilnius TV Tower

Vilnius TV Tower is a TV and radio broadcasting center in Lithuania's tallest structure VietovesLt

The tallest structure in the country, it can compete with famous high-rises of the world. From the observation deck at a height of 165 m a wonderful view over Vilnius opens up, though the area is enclosed by glass, there is no open access. There is also a revolving restaurant up there. Despite the rather high prices, it is always difficult to find a free table here.

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24. Park of Europe

Work of Magdalena Abakanovich "Space of unknown growth" in the Park of Europe Legionas

This is not a simple park, but rather a museum, located on 55 hectares under the open sky. The original sculptures presented in the territory deserve great reviews from the park’s guests. Among the most interesting compositions is the labyrinth of 3,000 old TV sets. The sculpture is made in the shape of a tree, but this can only be seen from above. Overall, an interesting collection of original installations.

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25. Trakai Castle

Trakai Castle, surrounded by a beautiful natural landscape

An interesting cozy place, shrouded in legend and lake water. A small restored castle is interesting with a collection of exhibits housed inside. The tour will plunge guests into the medieval atmosphere, will lead them through the narrow staircases and palace halls. You can finish the walk with a ride on a yacht around the lake.

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Vilnius is ideal for romantic visits, family holidays and just to expand the boundaries of the tourist world.

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