Lift to Uania 

Bus was our transport of choice to get to Vilnius from Riga. The trains aren’t so good for getting around the Baltics, or into Poland, as there is a lot of renovation work going on to update these networks. So a new experience for us. It was very comfortable for the short 4 hour hop as it turned out so all good 👍

As ever our first day in a new place requires a little orientation so we met up for a free walking tour of the Old Town of Vilnius, we had Ieva showing us around. The first thing we noticed was the disproportionate number of men in kilts waving Scottish flags. Turned out they are playing Lithuania for a World Cup place, they might be able to win that one as Lithuania’s favoured sport is basketball. Lithuania beat Russia to the bronze medal in the first post Soviet Union Olympics apparently so it has had very strong support ever since.

We also found out when Lithuania gained independence, we’ll let you guess that one…

Right, on with the tour:

Interestingly Vilnius, along with a few other notable cities around the world, have had the art quarter proclaimed an independent republic which they have called the Republic Of Uźupis with it’s very own constitution:

Their symbol is a hand with a hole in that signifies how they don’t make art for money but for the creativity in it’s own right. You can buy t-shirts with this symbol along with other items of an artistic nature from their shop…

Nice area though, it was an area of empty and derelict building in the Soviet times but it was close to the art college so teachers and students squatted there and improved the area.  Then in 1991 they claimed them as their own and the area has continued to improve:

We chose to chill after that. We got ourselves an apartment with a kitchen and washing machine and had a couple of days of domestic bliss. 

And relax…


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