Wednesday, April 22, 2009



In 1323 the Grand Duke of Lithuania Gediminas chooses Vilnius to be the capital of Lithuania. It took a long way until the Old Town was inscribed, in 1994, in the UNESCO's World Heritage List. This post is dedicated to the old part of town (one of the largest old towns in Eastern Europe), though churches and temples have been put aside for two different posts!

"GEDIMINAS (ca. 1275 – winter 1341), ruler of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, built it as an empire and made Vilnius its capital. The monument, by Vytautas Kašuba, was uncovered in 1996"

"GEDIMINAS TOWER - The only remaining part of the Upper Castle in Old Vilnius, it's named after the founder of the city, though it was built much later"

"PILIES STREET, literally «Castle Street» links the Cathedral Square to the Town Hall Square, through Didzioji (Main) Street. Popular with market traders, it gets the visits of gift buyers as well as of souvenir hunters"

"AMBER MUSEUM - One of the most admired souvenirs is amber ware and amber jewellery. You may find it everywhere. The Museum was founded in 1988 and shows exhibits of various sizes, forms and colour, as well as the ceramics baking shop of the end of the 15th century found in the basement...."

"MYKOLOS STREET, by the Amber Museum"

"DIDZIOJI STREET - Luxurious boutiques, coffee shops, cultural centres, embassies, night clubs, amber and linen, everything can be found in Main Street!"

"SWEDISH EMBASSY - One of the embassies in Main Street, dedicated to Peter"

"STENDHAL - Near the Swedish Embassy, the Alliance Française and a house where Stendhal slept on his way to Moscow with Napoleon can be found. This one is dedicated to my French speaking visitors"

"GATE OF DAWN - Originally named Medininkai Gate, as it is on the road to Medininkai, it was built between 1503 and 1522. It's the only one of the original five gates in the city wall that remains"



"MEDININKAI RESTAURANT - The village at the end of the road - 26km from Vilnius - gives its name to the restaurant"

"HOTEL ASTORIJA - A Radisson SAS hotel"

"TOWN HALL - Rebuilt in neoclassical style in 1799"

"TOWN HALL - From the side"

"TOURISTS - On Town Hall Square"

"TOWN HALL SQUARE - Home to the Kaziuskas Fair, a large annual Lithuanian folk arts and crafts fair dating to the beginning of the 17th century. Usually held on the Sunday nearest to March 4, the day Saint Casimir Jagiellon died"

"PRESIDENTIAL PALACE - There was a public building on this site since 1387, date of Lithuania’s conversion to Christianity. Through 1795, date of the country’s annexation by the Russian Empire, this was the Bishop of Vilnius’s palace. Taken over as a residence by the Russian governor, it was home to Napoleon in 1812, when the French army marched through. The present building, in late Classical/Empire style of the 19th century, was converted to the President’s Office in 1997"

"INSIDE - This one was taken from the veranda of the palace towards the gardens. As I had no camera, the cell phone was used and the result, after re-sizing, was this blurred picture..."



Trotter said...

Hi Everybody! In the middle of the green, there is a town with a long history... And after the clouds the sun started shinning! Hope you enjoy and have a great week!

Pat @ Mille Fiori Favoriti said...

Vilnius looks like a very historical town Gil. I love amber, and that was such a big piece you showed!

Baron's Life said...

Great Job Man
Keep them coming

SusuPetal said...

Wonderful, old buildings, they're beautiful.

Rajesh said...

The buildings are really beautiful. Thanks for sharing the nice architectures

hpy said...

Vilnius looks like a nice place, but the photo I prefer is the one of the tourists.

Rakesh Vanamali said...

Great pictures Gil.....these buildings look regal!

indicaspecies said...

Thanks for sharing these beautiful Baroque style buildings of the old part of town. That amber looks so attractive!

Thérèse said...

Funny how Gediminas is way up there (probably out of reach at the time too) and seems small compared to the statue base...
Did you find any clues about the "amber room" mystery?

alicesg said...

Wow very beautiful. Did the guy hitch a ride behind a car in the third photo. Love the street scene.

Mandy said...

Wow Trotter - amazing. And congrats - you have succeeding in putting Lithuania on my list of places to visit!

Indrani said...

Vilnius, It is beautiful, Old and New what a contrast!

Azer Mantessa said...

the amber museum ... deserve the award for the day :-)

Unknown said...

Many lovely picture, tks so much for sharing ;p

Shionge said...

I just love this beautiful place :D You've lived well Gil :D

bindu said...

The buildings are all so artistic and ornate! Beautiful.

Maria Verivaki said...

what a pretty town, love the amber museum!

Asian Traveler said...

The Old Town of Vilnius has somewhat an exceptional unique architectural feature. Oh and the Amber Museum is also pretty interesting.

By the way, please change my site from The Asian Traveler to An Asian Traveler. I lost my custom domain. I have now my new web address . My blog is still in transition. Thank you.

alok said...

beautiful pictures of a lovely town, thanks for sharing :)

you too have a wonderful week.

Lakshmi said...

lovely pics..tho im not into jewelery, the amber is lovely

Ron said...

Very nice pictures. Lithuania looks like a very beautiful place. I would love to see Eastern Europe someday. I really like the picture of the Pilies Street and the tourists pic.

Olivier said...

encore un endroit que tu me fais decouvrir. j'aime beaucoup la "GATE OF DAWN", elle est tres belle.
Tu as de la chance de pouvoir aller ecouter du Bach, je suis fan (malheureusement rarement joué à Evry) alors bon concert

Anonymous said...

The tourist picture is the best! But love them all. I live in "old town" too but not quite as gracious as this one. :) You are going to hear Bach. I am going to hear rock n' roll this weekend. What a difference but both wonderful. Have a great weekend Trotter. ~ Lynn

Chuckeroon said...

It's nice to be back in Europe. Home sweet home and all that!

Mariposa said...

ooh nice! Amber museum looks interesting =)

Lori said...

What a charming looking place. I love the shot in the middle of the street, where everyone is milling around. It looks so bustling. But I wonder what the person in the middle is doing. It looks like they are drafting along behind a pedicab. This must have been an enjoyable trip.

raccoonlover1963/Lisa Myers said...

Hello Gil
Thanks for your visit this morning.
Great shots. I like the shot from the palace veranda, even though it was with a cell phone. My cell camera is nowhere close to being that clear, even when it isn't enlarged.
Do the free trial on Photoshop Elements 7 first. Go to and click the small blue box that says elements 7, then click free trial. You won't have to give any credit card info until you are ready to buy.

RuneE said...

Vilnius has been much recommended to me for a visit - I can see why.

Jen Laceda | Milk Guides said...

Hi Gil, thanks for showing me Vilnius. I love it! It's like Prague, only with fewer tourists and more peaceful, perhaps?

Never thought of going to Vilnius, but you just gave me a few reasons here! Can't wait to see the churches!

P.S. Thanks for leaving comment on my sad post. I think we will seek legal action!

Joy said...

You do capture the spirit of the place, Gil. Love the colourful buildings. So, did you take any amber for souvenir?

Thanks for visiting Norwich Daily Photo and leaving your comment. Come back tomorrow!

A Pinay In EnglandYour Love CoachI, Woman

Venksh said...

sorry i took long time to comment... too much of work these days.... me abt to take a holiday n gonna visit my grandparents..
The picx of PRESIDENTIAL PALACE Town Hall Square are really awesome....


Lara said...

after a week of blogging pause, I am back online! and what a great surprise there is here on your blog! you have really been everywhere!

Daniel Chérouvrier said...

Très belle ville.
Merci pour le clin d'oeil à l'auteur du Rouge et le Noir.

Pietro Brosio said...

Gil, the old town of Vilnius is really worth visiting! Your photographs are all splendid! I enjoyed this great post!
I'm glad you are at the Music Fest: I also like very much Bach! :-)

Ashira said...

As always, wonderful photos, and a new place I need to add to my ever growing list of countries to visit!
Thanks for your comment a while back on Nomad Skater - check it out again, I've just written my first post!
Have a great weekend!

adelynne said...

I've missed a lot of your posts, haven't I? I'm so sorry! So busy with work and other things... but this post caught my eye because I LOVE old architecture, and Europe is full of them, AND my friend studied in Lithuania! She went to Vilnius University.

Sigh. I miss Europe. :(

Jo's-D-Eyes said...

Hi dear Gil,
Great to see the Old tow and you and your wife(or your daughter?) anyhow I am so glad I can travel with you through a lot of intersting places...

Always when I visit your site-blog a trvelpage (booking-com) is "in the way"di you arrage that?

Wishing you a wonderful MUSIC FEST (bach) I wonder how you liked it?

Good weekend and enjoy your life.. PS thanks for your compliments for my exibition designs...


Cutie said...

I wouldn't mind living in such a beautiful place. Love those buildings.

Light and Voices said...

Your tour of Lithuania was an eye stopper for sure. I so enjoy visiting other places through your blog.

lyliane six said...

J'aime mieux ce côté là de Vilnius, ces petites maisons colorées et les vieux bâtiments et vous toujours aussi beaux ensemble.Bonne semaine.

Cergie said...

Partout les conquêtes et la défense nationale ; ce qui fait des châteaux forts et des statues d'hommes et de chevaux carapaconnés (et bien raides)... C'était avant la Grande Europe des temps modernes !
J'aurais cru que tu aurais montré l'ambassade de France.
J'aime l'ambre, pour l'idée qu'ils contient prisonnières des traces de vie saisies. On fait de très beaux bijoux translucides (idem à Pragues), et pourtant je ne suis pas très bijou.
As tu offert une jolie broche à Madame Trotter ?

leo said...

Beautiful buildings in Lithuania. By any chance you see any old vampire castle? hint!hint! :)) hv a great week. peace.

leo said...

Beautiful buildings in Lithuania. By any chance you see any old vampire castle? hint!hint! :)) hv a great week. peace.

PeterParis said...

Sorry for being so late to comment, but the last couple of days I have reduced my blogging activities to a minimum; visitors, parties... I'm especially sorry, as you have a special dedication to me! Sincere thanks! The Embassy is quite modest, but I guess that's normal considering the size of the population in the respective counntries. [I see that Cergie would have preferred the French one! :-)]

... and of course Napoleon was there also! :-)

Yes, a very interesting architecture; you can clearly feel in which corner of Europe you are - except for the new buildings in the background! :-)

Tinsie said...

Very pretty indeed :-)

P.N. Subramanian said...

I wish I too could have been there. Its so beautiful.

Trotter said...

Hi Folks! Today is a holiday, so I’m finally profiting from the occasion to get some time to reply to your comments. And hopefully to make the tour of my favourite blogs! If not today, at least during the weekend, though Sunday is Mother’s Day here in Portugal...

You would be ruined in those amber sanctuaries... ;))

Thanks for your support!!

Glad that you liked them...

My pleasure

Thanks! We are much obliged... ;)

They’re regal...

I suspect you would be delighted... and lost in those amber shops... ;) Don’t bring the credit card... ;))

That Gediminas statue is amazing, to say the least... ;)
No chance with the Amber Room, unfortunately... ;)
It seems that in 1998, one team in Lithuania announced that they had located the Amber Room buried in a lagoon; but didn’t show it up... We’ll have to wait... ;))

Alice SG,
The girl was part of the show, I believe... ;))

Glad to see you back! You’ll have more of Lithuania on further posts to take a more well-informed decision... ;))

Old and New is always amazing, isn’t it? ;)

Don’t go there with your wife and the credit card; penniless, no risk... ;))

Thanks for commenting!!

I would say that everyone gets his/her share... ;))

Baroque! Always ornate...

OK, but don’t enter the Amber Museum with a credit card... ;))

Asian Traveller,
I noticed the link was directing me to a different and rather un-interesting commercial site... ;) Glad to have recovered your directions...

Glad to read you back here!!

Believe me: don’t venture into the Amber Museum with your credit card; too risky... ;)

There are so many beautiful places around; shame that we won’t be able to see them all... But we should try... ;))

«Héritage de Bach» au Centre Culturel de Belém: 12 concerts et un CD magnifique de Jacques Loussier. Quel weekend!!

I wouldn’t mind to get to the rock concert to… ;) Thanks for the compliment on the tourists…

Home sweet home… Travelling is becoming dangerous; flu included…

I knew the amber would catch your attention… ;))

Pilies St. is always bustling; and I didn’t show the art dealers… ;)
The girl is taking a lift… ;))

Thanks for the info on the Photoshop!
I’m sorry I didn’t carry the camera to the President’s reception; would have made much better pictures of the beautiful palace!!

You’re not that far… ;)

Much calmer than Prague, unless the fact that it is European Capital of Culture 2009 makes a huge difference… ;)
OK with the legal action! But be careful to choose a good lawyer… ;))

I didn’t take any amber as a souvenir, but I paid for the amber to be taken as a souvenir… ;)) Beware with your credit card when you get there this summer… ;))

So you’ll be travelling! Enjoy, but be careful with the spreading flu…

Great to read you back!! I had some friends who used to joke with the question: who is the guy in white next to gmg? ;))

Henri-Marie Beyle a été partout avec Napoléon… ;))

This was a busy weekend – 12 concerts! And it continued throughout the week: Strauss’ Salome and Händel’s Agrippina… Tiring… ;))

Great to see you back here! I’ve checked your blog, but still waiting for a new post… ;))

I’m so glad to read you back! Don’t worry; everybody is busy… If it isn’t work it’s other things… ;)) Amazing that you have a friend at Vilnius University…

Come on, do I look so old or does she, who has been together since April 25th, 1970 (seventy), look so young? ;))
Bach’s Legacy was superb!! Wonderful concerts and great ambiance!!

You also live in a beautiful place…

Great to read you back. My pleasure! Enjoy!

Dis donc: tu as trop de campagne chez toi? ;)
Pourquoi est-ce que je tape toujours champagne? ;))

Il faut avouer que la statue de Gediminas est ahurissante, même si on est habitué à trouver tout ces conquérants partout en Europe… ;)
L’Ambassade de France non, mais tu as eu la maison où Henri-Marie Beyle, a séjourné… Alors, quoi de mieux que la maison de l’auteur de «De L’amour» ;))
Et comment as-tu deviné que l’ambre est venu dans la valise pour rejoindre l’ambre polonais et tchèque qui était chez nous? ;))

No vampires; they were all gone south to Transylvania, Romania… ;))

Thanks for always taking your time to come here. The embassy looks pretty decent, and as for Lucie, I had Stendhal’s house… ;))
Baroque spread eastwards, so no wonder we find the «Mittel-Europa» style also in Vilnius…

Great to read you here! Glad you enjoyed!!

I’ll be posting some more!!

[G@ttoGiallo] said...

47 reactions ! Impressive & justified !

GMG said...


lv2scpbk said...

I love amber stones. I love to look at it because every stone is different. That's a great photo of you and your wife. Do you ask someone to take the photos while your touring?

Trotter said...

The amber items are lovely; the only problem is to make sure that you're buying the right stuff and not some kind of plastic imitation... ;)
We had some friends with us, so taking the picture wasn't a problem!!

Maspri said...

Nice photos

Trotter said...

Thanks for your visit and first time comment!

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Trotter said...

No Thanks!!