Kavn (Kaunos) is an ancient city in Turkey, near the town of Dalyan. Many tourists who visited the cities of Dalaman and Marmaris heard about it, but few visited this ancient city. Almost all excursions affect only the ancient necropolis in the rocky terrain north of Kavn.
According to legend, the city was founded by Kavn, the son of the demigod Miletus. In this region, he fled here because of his love for his sister, the Bible. At one time, Herodotus mentioned the inhabitants of the city in one of his books. During the excavations, it turned out that the city was created about a thousand years ago BC. This is evidenced by the found fragments of amphoras made around 850 BC. At this time, the city was called Kbid. Around the 6th century BC the city became an important trading harbor, in those days Lake Syuluklu and Ala were a single bay, which allowed ships to sail to the port of Kavna. Then the Persian troops came to these lands, and the inhabitants of the city put up worthy resistance, but the Persians greatly outnumbered and took the city.
The Persians ruled Asia Minor for about a century, until Kavn joined the Athenian Maritime Union. The Greeks from the cities received large sums of money, due to which they were able to raise an army and weaken the Persian army. The Athenians also erected many buildings in the city, the remains of which can be seen today. In the second century, the Romans came here, who expanded the port, built baths, fountains, and temples. The theater they built today is one of the most popular venues.
With the collapse of the Roman Empire, the city became part of Byzantium, but in the 7th century fell into decay due to raids by Arabs, and several earthquakes later occurred. Silting of the river was added to all the troubles, and the city lost its port status. Around the 1420s, an epidemic occurred in Kavn, then another earthquake and the city became depopulated. They forgot about the city until the 19th century; from the 1960s, archaeological excavations have been carried out in Kavn.
On land, it’s hard to get into the city, they come here along the Dalyan River.
We invite you to get acquainted, first of all, with the Old Town. This is the cradle of modern Kaunas. Its location is the confluence of the Neris and Nemunas rivers. Here are almost all the most significant monuments of ancient architecture, which Kaunas is famous for.
Its sights: Bernardine Monastery, Kaunas Castle, Vytautas Church, Town Hall Square, Cathedral, Jesuit Monastery, etc. Vilnius Street is a pedestrian and the most beautiful one. It connects the Old Town with the city center. It is part of the medieval road leading to Vilnius and the busiest street in the Old Town. On both sides of the building are 16th century buildings. Gymnasium named after Mironis is located on the outskirts of this part of the city. The Seim of Lithuania once sat in it. It was here that the first Constitution was adopted. In 1919 it became the provisional capital of the country of Kaunas. Its sights at that time were significantly replenished, as the city began to develop rapidly. And the two-story building erected in the 19th century opposite the gymnasium began to serve as the residence of the first president.
Kaunas Castle is located on the street. Papillo. This is an old building, which was built during the time of ancient Lithuania. The first mention of it can be found in historical sources dating back to 1361. Little information has been preserved about the oldest castle. It is known that this building, erected to protect against the crusaders at the confluence of two rivers (Neris and Nemunas), was soon destroyed. However, the ruins of a later castle have survived to this day.
Kaunas Castle was built by Prince Vytautas the Great in the early 15th century. According to the legends, there are huge cellars under it, where warriors enchanted by Vytautas sleep, sometimes military teams are distributed from there. Today, the castle, many times destroyed and restored, is carefully preserved. The round tower is best preserved. Next to it is a defensive artillery bastion dating back to the 2nd half of the 16th century. Kaunas Castle is the oldest surviving stone building in Lithuania. In its masonry there are elements of the 13th century. The castle, unfortunately, is not in use today. There is no exposure in it, but there is an opportunity to go down to the basement.
Kaunas Town Hall
What else is attractive to Kaunas? We have listed not all its attractions. Pay attention to the Kaunas Town Hall. This building is also called the "white swan." The town hall was erected over 460 years ago. Construction took more than 10 years. The largest building resembled what you can see today, but the tower was 4 meters lower than the current one. Both the interior and the facade of the building were made in the Gothic style. The window and doorways had a curly outline made of clay bricks. On the ground floor were shops, retail premises. On the second was the courtroom, the hall in which the meetings of the city magistrate were held, and the office rooms. The prison was located in the basement of the tower.
The building of the town hall has been damaged more than once. It changed the purpose and appearance. The Renaissance replaced Gothic, and then gave way to classicism and baroque. The Town Hall served as the Orthodox Church and even as a warehouse for artillery shells. In it in the 19th century was the royal residence, and then the Russian theater and fire station. In the 20th century, city government was located here, as well as the city archive, and later - the institute’s faculty. Weddings are held at the town hall today. Here, officials sign contracts, receive honored guests, and celebrations and official events take place. In the basement is a museum of ceramics.
Liberty Alley (Laisves)
Involuntarily you ask yourself a question, sorting through the numerous sights of Kaunas in your head: "What is better to visit?" Of course, you should get on the Liberty Alley. It is the main street of Kaunas, given to pedestrians. Locals say this is the longest pedestrian alley in Europe. And although its history is shorter than the history of the Town Hall or Kaunas Castle, it is no less identified with Kaunas.
Laisves Alley is often called the symbol, the heart of the city. Here are commercial facilities, universities, government agencies. Various events and promotions are often held here because of the large crowds. Some people call the avenue the “podium,” since young men and women from various parts of the city come here to show themselves. Its length is 1621 meters. The street in the Old Town begins and ends at the Garrison Cathedral.
It was formed in the period from the 2nd half of the 19th century to the beginning of the 20th century. To interwar modernism or the era of historicism ranked its architecture. The alley was intended for pedestrians and vehicles: two rows of trees that were planted in the middle created a footpath. However, 20 years ago, the Liberty Alley was reconstructed. Today it serves only for pedestrians. In its center is a fountain, which is a popular meeting place.
Cathedral of Peter and Paul
The largest temple in the city, as well as one of the largest churches in the country, is Kaunas Cathedral. Its length is 84 m, height - 28 m, width - 34 m. It is the only Gothic cathedral in the country. Its interior is made up of very valuable paintings dating back to the Baroque era. The exact date of its construction is unknown, but it is believed that this is the period from 1408 to 1413. The three-nave part of the cathedral was built in about two centuries. Many wars and fires survived the building. The main altar was erected in 1775. It has survived to this day. The cathedral after restoration, which took place in 1800, remained practically unchanged.
House of Perkunas
Interested in antiquity? Then the city of Kaunas (Lithuania) will definitely not disappoint you. Attractions dating back to different eras are represented in great numbers. An example of late Gothic, also called fiery, is the house of Perkunas, which was built in the 15th century. In the 19th century, they were especially interested in this medieval monument. It was then that it was announced that this building served as the pagan temple of Perkunas (the thunder god in Baltic mythology). The romantic version is so strong that to this day the house is called after Perkunas. Especially often began to associate it with pagan beliefs after the discovery of a bronze figurine during reconstruction. On the head of this figure was an image of a city with temples and towers, its legs were crossed, three fish were in their hands. For some time she was exhibited at the Warsaw Museum, then she was transported to St. Petersburg. Here the traces of the figurine are lost.
After the restoration of independence, the house of Perkunas was returned to the Jesuits who owned it after the First World War. Today it is the property of the Jesuit gymnasium. Here is an exposition that tells visitors about the life and work of A. Mickiewicz, there is a hall for concerts and exhibitions, theatrical tours are held.
Do not miss the Presidential Palace when visiting the sights of the city of Kaunas. In 1860 this building was built. After 16 years, the tsarist authorities bought it and made it a governor's residence. From 1919 to 1940, when the city became a temporary capital, the Presidential Palace was located here. The living quarters are located on the ground floor, at the main entrance there is a duty room and a reception room. In the front part of the second floor there were 2 salons for receptions and a small dining room. Three presidents of the country (Smetona, Grinyus and Stulgaitis) lived and worked in this mansion. In the Soviet years, the Palace of Pioneers was located here first, and then (since 1955) - the Teacher’s House. In 2005, a branch of the Art Museum named after Churnelisa. In the square next to him several years ago sculptures were installed depicting the presidents Stulgaitis, Grinyus and Smetona. There is a museum in the building today.
What else does Kaunas offer tourists? Sights and places of rest here can be found for every taste, but everyone is definitely worth a look at Unity Square. In the very center of Kaunas there is this square with a sculpture of Liberty. This is a kind of memorial to the country's independence. In 1989, the sculpture was restored, and a year later - and a monument to those who died for the independence of Lithuania. This is a pyramid next to which eternal flame burns. Openwork crosses complement the ensemble. There is also a complex of museums - Vytautas the Great and the War Museum, A. муmujdzinavičius and M.K. юрurnelis.
Visit other sights of Kaunas, the city of romantics, such as Carignon. This is a bell tower where bell music concerts have been held for about 30 years. In 1935, Carillon from 35 bells was cast in the workshop of Tornau (in Belgium). It was established on the initiative of Vladas Nagyavichyus (general) and J. Tallat-Kelpši (composer) in 1937 in the tower of the Military Museum. Here, the "presidential" bell was installed not so long ago. The president himself and his wife financed his casting.
Considering travel brochures that show the addresses of Kaunas with addresses, it is difficult to make a choice if you have only a few days to travel around the city. We recommend staying at the facilities listed in this article. This, of course, is far from a complete list, which is offered by various brochures with names like "Description of Kaunas with Attractions in Russian", but it consists of the most significant objects.
Short description of Kaunas
Kaunas is a Lithuanian city, the second largest after Vilnius and Klaipeda. Kaunas is the center of Kaunas region, the area of the city is 157 km 2, and the population is more than 300 thousand people. Kaunas is located 104 km from Vilnius, not far from the Kaunas reservoir.
Kaunas is located at the confluence of the Viliya river (Nyaris, lit. Neris) in the Neman (Nemunas, lit. Nemunas)
A brief history of the city
Kaunas was first mentioned in the year 1361 as a marshland. Then the city was called Kovno and was part of the Genesis Union. In the Middle Ages there was a center of trade with Western Europe. However, by the 18th century, Kovno was in economic decline. He joined the Russian Empire in 1795 (this was the result of the partition of the Commonwealth). In 1842, the city became the provincial center, and at the beginning of the 20th century - the provisional capital of the Republic of Lithuania.
Strong changes in the life of Kaunas brought the Second World War. A front of activists formed in Lithuania, its fighters rebelled and liberated the village from Soviet troops. The German army entered the already liberated city. At the beginning of the war, Lithuanian activists killed more than 800 Jews, and the government had to issue a regulation establishing ghetto districts. As a result, 30 thousand Jews moved here. In 1944, Soviet power returned to Kaunas, but partisan detachments were created, which led to new uprisings and acts of protest. Only after the war in Kaunas became relatively calm. Now the city is considered European, architecture has been preserved and increased here, and thousands of tourists visit Kaunas every year.
How to get to Kaunas
You can get to Kaunas in several ways:
- By plane (from Moscow, St. Petersburg, Riga, Tallinn, Boryspil, Tel Aviv, etc.).
- By train from Moscow or St. Petersburg, as well as with a change in Vilnius from other major cities.
- By bus from large cities (Moscow, Kiev, Riga, Warsaw, Lviv, etc.).
- By your own car or taxi through Daugavpils or Vilnius.
Catholic church of Vytautas
Catholic church of Vytautas (Vytauto Didžiojo bažnyčia) is a Roman Catholic church. It was built in the Gothic style in 1400 and is considered one of the oldest in Kaunas. Originally it was a temple for Franciscan monks and foreign merchants. And he sponsored the construction of the church Vytautas the Great. So he wanted to receive the patronage of the Blessed Virgin Mary. A battle was planned at Vorskla, and Vytautas wanted to survive at all costs.
The church is close to the river, so earlier it was often flooded during spring floods. In 1812, the French burned it. After the Polish uprising, it was completely closed. After perestroika, the church was opened as an Orthodox church. The Catholic Church returned Vytautas Cathedral in 1919, and in the second half of the 20th century it was restored. The church has changed a bit externally (due to the rise in the ground level, the windows have been reduced), but it still works.
Interestingly, the famous Lithuanian writer, critic and church figure Juozas Tumas is buried in the crypt of the church. The Russians can know him under a creative pseudonym - Juozas Vaizhgantas. The museum located near the church is also named after Tumas.
- Address: 3 Aleksoto Street (coordinates: 54 ° 53′42 ″ N 23 ° 53′11 ″ E),
- official website: http://vytautine.lt,
- working hours: daily, round-the-clock,
- the entrance is free.
Catholic church of St. Gertrude
Catholic church of St. Gertrude (Šv. Gertrūdos bažnyčia) - a Catholic church built in the style of brick Gothic. The temple was built around the 15th century, and in 1503 it became a parish at the initiative of the Prince of Lithuania Alexander. In the middle of the XVII century the church was destroyed (Russian-Polish war), and it was repaired in 1680. After another 70 years, the temple was expanded, a hospital was added, but the church lost its popularity. By the end of the 18th century, only 5 monks remained in the church (Order of St. Roch).
In 1796 the church was rebuilt again, and an organ was also installed, but in 1812 there was a strong fire in Kaunas, and the church burned down. The surviving part of the church was transferred to the Order of the Daughters of Mercy. Later, the temple was transferred to the Marians, and a monastery was also built next to it. During the years of Soviet rule, the church did not work; medical equipment was stored in the church premises. At the end of the 20th century, they wanted to demolish the object, but the people were against it.When independence returned to Lithuania, the temple reopened. In 1992, the building underwent the last major reconstruction.
- Address: Laisvės al., 101 A (coordinates: 54 ° 53′50 ″ N 23 ° 54′05 ″ E),
- official website: www.gertrudosbaznycia.lt,
- working hours: daily from 9:00 to 19:00,
- Free admission.
Peter and Paul Cathedral
The Cathedral of Peter and Paul (Šv. Apaštalų Petro ir Povilo bazilika) is another Catholic (Protestant) temple in Kaunas. It is the only Gothic basilica in Lithuania. It was built in 1413, and the nave and towers were completed at the beginning of the XVII century. Until 1864, the cathedral belonged to the Augustine Order. The temple passed to Kaunas archdiocese only in 1865. Benedict XV granted the cathedral of Peter and Paul the status of a basilica in 1921.
The church is 84 meters long and 34 meters wide, and is famous for its altar created by Tomas Podgajsky (creation date - 1755). Another attraction of the temple is the icons that adorn the interior of the basilica (artists: Johann Gotthard Berhoff and Michael Andriolli). Bishop M. Valančius and Cardinal V. Sladkevičius are also buried here. Outside the crypt, the famous Lithuanian poet Mironis is buried.
- Address: 26 Vilniaus Street (coordinates: 54 ° 53′49 ″ N 23 ° 53′20 ″ E),
- official website: http://kaunoarkikatedra.lt,
- the schedule of services is on the official website,
- Free admission.
Kaunas Town Hall
The building of the Kaunas Town Hall (Kauno rotušė) was built in the 16th century. The construction began back in 1542, but the one-story building was too small, so it was decided to continue construction. Merchants were located on the ground floor, courts, a magistrate, a treasury and archival premises were on the second floor. The lower floors were also involved - goods were stored in the basements of the main knowledge, and there was a prison under the tower. In the XVII century, the town hall was renovated in the Renaissance style. Even more, the building was transformed in the second half of the 18th century - another floor appeared, the facade changed, etc. (architect - J. Metekeris). The building has acquired the appearance characteristic of Baroque and Classicism.
In the XIX century there was an Orthodox church, a military depot, clubs, a fire station, a theater, etc. Over the course of a century, it was rebuilt several times. Now in the building of the town hall is a museum. Museum exhibits: reconstructed offices of officials, a prison, living rooms, etc. There is also an observation deck. Locals call this building "White Swan." Wedding ceremonies and official city events are held here.
- Address: Town Hall Square, 15 (Rotušes aikšte),
- official website: www.kaunomuziejus.lt,
- working hours: from Monday to Friday (from 08:00 to 18:00),
- entrance fee: adult ticket - 1.8 euros, children's ticket - 1.2 (an excursion in Russian costs 12 euros).
Center of cultures of different nations
The Cultural Center (Kauno įvairių tautų kultūrų centras) is an institution that combines the cultural life of national minorities. It was created in 2004 and every year its popularity is only growing. The center hosts major city events, seminars and conferences. Also, the annual festival "Cultural Bridges" is held here. Every summer, the center organizes children's parties, and every winter, New Year's performances.
Also, training workshops are held here (photo art, drawing, etc.). All actions and events are supported by Russian, Armenian, Tatar, Gypsy and other national autonomies. It is believed that the Kaunas Cultural Center is the only institution in the city that conducts such activities.
- Address: Vilniaus gatve, 7 A,
- exact coordinates: 54 ° 53′56 ″ N 23 ° 53′35 ″ E,
- working hours: daily, round-the-clock,
- admission is free (you need to pay only for participation in paid events).
Museum of the Devils
Museum of the Devils is the only exposition dedicated to these mystical creatures. This museum was opened in the second half of the 20th century. The first exhibits were items collected by a private collector Zhmuizinavichyus. These are not only devil statues, the exhibits are different objects: boxes, mugs, ashtrays, canes, candlesticks, etc. In the museum you can see different mystical creatures: devils, goblin, witch, etc. The devil is popular among Russian tourists. from Gogol's tale "Evenings on a Farm Near Dikanka".
An interesting fact: at the very beginning of the 20th century, Zhmuizinavichyus was presented with an imp figure. He got the idea to collect the “damn dozen”, so he needed 12 more figures. As a result, he was able to assemble a collection of 260 devils (20 damn dozens) made of clay, wood, metal and other materials.
- museum address: Putvinskio gatve, 64,
- official website: www.ciurlionis.lt,
- working hours: daily from 11:00 to 17:00 (on Thursday - until 19:00),
- entrance fee: adult ticket - 2 euros, children - 1 euro.
Ciurlionis Museum (Ciurlionis) was founded in 1921. The institution is named after the Lithuanian composer and artist, and the entire exhibition is dedicated to music. At first there was an ordinary gallery, but then this place became a museum of Vytautas culture. The main exposition is represented by personal belongings of Čiurlionis and his works of art. The visitor can simultaneously watch paintings and listen to music written by the famous composer.
In addition, the museum has works of art by other authors: clay and wood sculptures, paintings, folk art, etc. Some exhibits of the museum are considered ancient (the age of the exhibits is 600 years or more). In total, the museum funds more than 300 thousand works of art.
- museum address: Putvinskio gatve, 55,
- official website: www.ciurlionis.lt,
- working hours: daily from 11:00 to 17:00, except Mondays (on Thursday - until 19:00),
- entrance fee: adult ticket - 2 euros, children - 1 euro.
Pyatrashyun cemetery is a necropolis with an area of 8.9 hectares. The cemetery began to be built in 1939, and the first burials date back to 1941. For 20 years, the cemetery expanded. In 1972, there was little space left, since then only outstanding Lithuanians (scientists, politicians, artists, etc.) were buried here.
In 2010, the facility was severely damaged due to a storm. The fact is that the necropolis occupies a peninsula in the bend of the Neman (not far from the Kaunas reservoir). Next to this place is the Pyatrashunai district - hence the name of the cemetery.
I have been to several cemeteries of famous people. They come to such places not only to visit the graves of the deceased. First of all, this is a historical place. After all, each grave has a monument or a memorial cross with a photograph of a famous figure and dates of life-death. There is a similar cemetery in Moscow (Novodevichye), the relatives of Ivan the Terrible and Alexei Mikhailovich are buried here. At the Vagankovsky cemetery there are graves of the Decembrists and friends of A.S. Pushkin. When I was little, my father came here to visit the graves of Yesenin and Vysotsky, Okudzhava and Mironov.
- the cemetery is located in a pine forest, in the eastern part of Pyatrashunai,
- exact coordinates: 54 ° 53′19 ″ N 24 ° 00′32 ″ E,
- Entrance to the cemetery is free.
The Military Museum of Vytautas the Great
The Vytautas Military Museum was established in 1919. The work of the museum is monitored by the Ministry of National Defense, and the exposition is constantly replenished with weapons of the First World War. The name of Vytautas the Great was given to the institution in 1930.
The entire exhibition is divided into several zones depending on the belonging of the exhibits to historical eras. The stationary museum building was built in the first half of the 20th century. In front of the museum there is an altar and the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. Also on the street are some units of military equipment. There are bells on the museum tower, but they ring only on weekends.
My friend Thomas was at this museum. He said that before each exhibit there is a sign with information about the subject. However, unlike most military-historical museums, everything is written in Lithuanian. Therefore, if you do not understand weapons, it is better to ask the museum staff for an excursion. The museum inspector told everything to Thomas. It was a broken Russian language, but it compared the information with the dates on the information tables, and in the end I understood everything.
- museum address: Donelaicio gatve 64 (coordinates: 54 ° 53’59 ″ N 23 ° 54’43 ″ E),
- official website: https://muziejai.lt,
- working hours: daily, except Monday (from 10:00 to 17:00),
- Entrance fee: adult ticket - 2 euros, children - 1 euro (family tours - up to 4.5 euros).
Kaunas Museum of the IX Fort
The IX Fort Museum was created in the 50s of the XX century. The exposition is dedicated to the most terrible crime against humanity - fascism. Exhibits talk about the victims of the Holocaust, and next to the fort there is a memorial in the form of boulders knocking out of the ground. The author of the memorial is sculptor Alfons Abraziunas.
The Ninth Fort (The Big Fort at Kumpe Farm) was built in 1902. He was one of the defensive structures surrounding the Coven Fortress. After World War I, there was a Lithuanian prison, and then - the headquarters of the NKVD. When the Great Patriotic War began, the Nazis organized a place of execution inside the fort, the victims of which were mostly Jews.
- museum address: Žemaičių pl, 73,
- official website: www.9fortomuziejus.lt
- working hours: daily from 10:00 to 18:00 (from April 1 to October 31) and from 10:00 to 16:00 (from November 1 to March 31),
- entrance fee: for adults - 3E euros, for children - 1.5 euros (excursions - from 4 euros).
Kaunas Reservoir (Kauno marios) is a water basin created by human hands in 1959. Its capacity is 462 m 3, so it is considered the largest reservoir in the country. A pond was created after the reconstruction of the Kaunas hydroelectric station and to ensure its operation. To fill it, a dam was installed on the Neman with a height of almost 25 m. On the shore of the reservoir there is a Pazhali monastery (architectural style - baroque), a yacht club, beaches and a regional park.
- Address: Miškininkų gatve, 2, Vaišvydavos,
- exact coordinates: 54 ° 51′10 ″ N 24 ° 10′02 ″ E,
- Park official website: http://kaunomarios.lt,
- Park working hours: daily
- Free admission.
Kaunas Botanical Garden
The Botanical Garden in Kaunas (Vytauto Didžiojo universiteto Kauno botanikos sodas) was founded in 1923. The total garden area is 62.5 ha. It was created for the cultivation of local flora species at the University of Vytautas the Great. About 14,000 species grow here. The exposition is divided into sectors, there is a greenhouse, arboretum, a perennial park with ponds and bridges, a playground, etc. Since the botanical garden is located on the territory of an old estate, all the space is used to create natural landscapes. More than 85 thousand people visit the garden annually.
Several of my friends visited this botanical garden. They said that it was especially beautiful in this park in late spring, when sakura blossoms. At the end of summer and autumn, the flowering plant season passes and the garden becomes like a sleeping city park. And there is no cafe in the botanical garden, and its area is rather rather big. For example, Thomas spent half the day in the botanical garden, and found only one buffet. Therefore, if you go here not for a cursory inspection of trees, but for a full walk, then stock up on food.
- address: Zhilibero street, 6 (conveniently accessible by bus number 7 from Kaunas castle),
- exact coordinates: 54 ° 52′14 ″ N 23 ° 54′37 ″ E,
- official website: http://botanika.vdu.lt,
- working hours: from November to March - from 10:00 to 17:00, from April to October - from 8:00 to 17:00 (on weekends - until 19:00),
- Entrance fee: adult ticket - 3 euros, children - 1 euro (full tour - 6 euros).
Napoleon's Hill is a hill that got its name in the 19th century. Its height is 63.3 meters. The original name of the hill is the Jiesia Mound or Payesis. Locals believe that this hill was used by the French commander Napoleon Bonaparte as an observation deck. Indeed, a panorama of the Neman River opens from the side of the hill, and as you know, the French crossed this river in 1812.
- the hill is between the Panemune bridge and the railway bridge,
- exact coordinates: 54 ° 51′43 ″ N 23 ° 55′34 ″ E,
- The attraction can be visited at any time and for free.
What to see in Kaunas in different seasons
Kaunas is beautiful at any time of the year. Medieval buildings and fortifications are equally good in both winter and summer. In the warm season, it is more convenient to visit natural attractions, for example, the Kaunas reservoir. Especially if you plan on sunbathing or swimming. In winter, museums and galleries are especially popular.
The zoo in Kaunas (Lietuvos zoologijos sodas) was opened in 1938. The initiator of the creation is the zoologist Tadas Ivanauskas. This is the only zoo in Lithuania. The official name of the object is the Lithuanian Zoo, its area is 15.9 hectares, and the number of inhabitants exceeds 2800 individuals. Here are animals (wallabies, tapirs, giraffes, hyenas, Amur tigers, etc.) and birds (parrots, swans, pheasants, etc.). Children especially like the local serpentarium (boa constrictor and other types of snakes).
- the zoo is located in the park Ažuolinas (алиaliakalnis), conveniently accessible by buses No. 3, 10 and 37,
- exact coordinates: 54 ° 54′05 ″ N 23 ° 57′05 ″ E,
- official website: http://zoosodas.lt,
- working hours: daily from 9:00 to 19:00 (from November to March - until 17:00, in April and October - until 18:00),
- entrance fee: adult ticket - 5 euros, children - 3 euros (family tour - up to 17 euros).
How long does it take to visit Kaunas
To visit all of the listed attractions in Kaunas, you need 2-3 days. If you decide to visit the Kaunas reservoir and the park adjacent to it, then you need another 1 day. Of course, at this time you will need a hotel room. Here are a few places to rent an overnight stay:
- Three star hotel Ibis Kaunas Center.
- Hotel Center Nuova.
- Guest house Home Hotel Kaunas.
- Four-star hotel Best Western Santakos Hotel.
- Two-star hotel Kaunas City.
If you have time left, you can visit two more places - the Pajali monastery and the choral synagogue.
The Pajali monastery (Pažaislio vienuolynas) is the largest monastery complex in the country, built in the Italian Baroque style. This Catholic monastery was designed by Chancellor Christopher Sigismund Patz in the 17th century. The monastery was destroyed in 1812, and at the end of the Polish uprising, the object was transferred to the Russian Orthodox Church. Later, he was transferred to the sisters of the Order of St. Casimir. During the Great Patriotic War there was an archive, a mental hospital and a gallery. In addition to visiting the building itself, music festivals and other cultural events are held here (now the monastery is a cultural and tourist center).
- address: Masiule street, 31 (not far from the Kaunas reservoir, you can get there by bus number 5 or trolleybus number 9),
- exact coordinates: 54 ° 52′33 ″ N 24 ° 01′19 ″ E,
- official website: https://pazaislis.org,
- working hours: from February to May - from 10:00 to 17:00, in June - from 10:00 to 16:00,
- Entrance fee: adult ticket - 3 euros, children - 1.5 euros.
The Kaunas Choral Synagogue (Kauno choralinė sinagoga) is a functioning synagogue built in 1872. The project was drawn up by Justin Golinevich, the architectural style is Neo-Baroque. The synagogue closed during the years of World War II, but after being liberated from occupation, it was reopened. tourists are attracted by the appearance of the building, and the interior. In addition, the temple has a memorial dedicated to Jewish children who died at the hands of the Nazis.
It is interesting that earlier this territory belonged to the municipality, and the land for construction was purchased by the merchant L. B. Minkowski.
- Address: 13 Elzes Ozheshkenes Street,
- exact coordinates: 54 ° 53′55 ″ N 23 ° 54′12 ″ E,
- working hours: daily from 9:00 to 21:00,
- the entrance is free.
Tips for staying in Kaunas
The inhabitants of Kaunas are distinguished by hospitality and peace, but Lithuania is a different country, so you need to prepare in advance for the trip. Here are some tips for staying in the city:
- Before the trip, download a voice translator to your phone (almost 93% of the population here are Lithuanians, few of them speak and understand Russian).
- It is convenient to book a room in a hotel or hotel in advance (so there will be no problems with the transfer to the hotel administration).
- In order not to have problems with "cash", it is better to exchange money in the exchanger.
- Most museums and galleries offer to visit the institution at a discount (family and group excursions are almost half cheaper).
- It is better to prepare a tourist map in advance. Save the map of sights on your smartphone
Reviews about Kaunas
I was in Kaunas in the summer of 2015, but despite the fact that I visited many places before and after him, I remember him well. He has his own face, under the heavenly dome fit both old, remembering the events of a century (and earlier) buildings, as well as buildings that were built during the Soviet era. Some of the local streets and houses resembled native Minsk ones, some, on the contrary, were different. But after getting to know the “old” part of the city, I realized that Kaunas is a book that cannot be judged by its cover. I liked the interestingly painted buildings, well-kept courtyards, hills, which offer a wonderful view of the city.
kris441, forum user
In Kaunas, we stayed in a small and cozy 4-star Amberton Cozy hotel with a nice snow-white restaurant on the ground floor instead of a dining room in the very center of the Old Town. We had a room with an attic and red tiled roofs and church steeples were visible from the window. The room itself was cool, the bathroom had underfloor heating. The hotel staff is friendly and smiling, they speak Russian well.
honigkuchen, forum user
Kaunas is a pleasant city with interesting sights. But one day to get to know him seemed to me quite enough. Well, of course, if you don’t go to museums, and there are a lot of them. The most famous is the only official Devil Museum on earth.
Delfico, forum user
Peerless nature, mushrooms, berries, hazelnuts. And which zoo is memorable, the Kaunas Sea, discos, museums, the old city, the botanical garden, and my favorite area, Lower Shanzi. And how I loved Laisves Alley. People will not believe me, Kaunas is dreaming of me with its streets. I don’t have the opportunity to go there, it’s so sad. The last time was there in 1986.
Tatyana Zudova, user of social networks
Kaunas is the third largest Lithuanian city. The history of the city began with the construction of the fortress, but Kaunas has seen many wars and raids. Therefore, now there are many museums and ancient, historically valuable buildings. Prices in Lithuania are low, there are different types of entertainment, and you can visit Kaunas with the whole family.
2. Laisves Alley
This is the most popular pedestrian street in Kaunas. Translated from Lithuanian - Freedom Alley. It was founded in the 19th century. The length is 1.7 km, the width is 24-27 meters. There are no vehicles and no smoking. Along the avenue rows of trees are planted, flower beds are broken, many benches for rest. There is a wide range of shops, restaurants, theaters, hotels, museums, night clubs. Many monuments and ancient buildings of historical value.
The Koven defensive fortress around the city was built at the end of the 19th century and consisted of 8 forts. The last, ninth, was built on the eve of the First World War. In Soviet times, it was used as a prison. And during the fascist occupation, the fort turned into a concentration camp, where Jews and Poles were massacred. Today, a museum of genocide and massacres has been created here, and a large memorial has been erected in memory of the many thousands of Nazi victims.
It rises in the heart of the historical part of the city - on the Town Hall Square. It was built in the XVI century, it was often rebuilt, therefore it combines elements of different styles. The town hall housed a prison, trading depots, an Orthodox church, the royal residence, a fire station, a theater, a city archive, an institute. The last reconstruction was carried out in 2005. Today, a city museum dedicated to the history of Kaunas is open here, an observation deck is equipped.
5. Cathedral of Saints Peter and Paul
Architectural monument. One of the largest Catholic churches in Lithuania. It began to be built in the XV century in the Gothic style. 2 centuries later, a building appeared in the form of a rectangular basilica, after another 100 years a 55-meter bell tower was completed, and in the XIX century - a chapel. The interior in the Baroque style has been preserved since the XVIII century. Of great artistic value are 9 altars. The temple is known in the old fashion for the Suffering Mother of God, giving healing.
6. Church of St. Francis Xavier
The white stone building in the Baroque style was erected in the XVII-XVIII centuries. Belongs to the Jesuit Church. Located in the central square, near the Town Hall. It has two tall bell towers. There is an observation deck on the roof. Repeatedly the church was passed from hand to hand - first to the Franciscans, then to the Orthodox Church, to the gymnasium. In Soviet times, it housed a gym with a sauna. He was returned by believers and re-consecrated in 1992.
7. Church of St. Michael the Archangel
The grandiose white-stone cathedral was built at the end of the 19th century by order of Alexander II. Intended for the Russian garrison. The height of the building is 50 meters, one of the 5 domes has a diameter of 16 meters and is considered the largest in Lithuania. The temple was built in neo-Byzantine style and can accommodate up to 2000 people. Decorated with a large number of columns, sculptures, stucco molding and gilding. In Soviet times, was given over to the museum. Since 1990 belongs to the Catholic Church.
8. Church of Vytautas
It was built in 1400 by order of Prince Vytautas the Great for Franciscan monks. Has a high bell tower. Built of fine red brick in the style of the Hanseatic Gothic. All geometric patterns and decorative elements on the facade are exclusively of the correct form, which is typical for this style. The interior is not preserved. Everything contained in the temple was completed in the 20th century. The church is active, accessible for inspection, but not during worship.
9. Church of St. Gertrude
Compact Gothic building in one of the corners of the Old Town. Architectural monument. One of the oldest brick temples in Lithuania. It was built in the XV century, later the bell tower was completed. The most valuable shrine is the cross with the crucifixion of Christ, which is credited with miraculous power. In Soviet times, warehouses were located within the walls of the church. In the 80s they wanted to completely demolish it, but the public prevented it. Now the temple is restored, services are held in it.
10. Church of the Resurrection of Christ
It was built in the 30s of the last century. It is a majestic stylish building made of white stone with a height of 70 meters. Holds up to 5000 people. In Soviet times, it was turned into a workshop of a radio factory where TVs were produced. Currently owned by the Catholic Church, services are being held. There is an observation deck on the roof of the church, one of the best in the city. The temple is located on the аaliakalnis hill, where you can climb the funicular.
12. Kaunas State Drama Theater
The first professional drama theater in Lithuania. It was created in 1920. It is located in a building built in 1928 on the famous Laisves alley. After extensive reconstruction, it is one of the most modern theaters in the Baltic region. His current repertoire consists of 30 successful productions, including for children and youth. Some performances use audio visualization for people with low vision, as well as simultaneous translation.
13. Kaunas State Musical Theater
Year of creation - 1940. Located in the building of the city theater, built at the end of the XIX century. The best theater directors of Lithuania and other European countries stage musical performances here. Each season, the theater pleases its audience with at least two premieres. His contemporary repertoire consists of operas, operettas, musicals, ballet performances and children's productions. The Theater Symphony Orchestra annually holds an instrumental concert with the participation of famous performers.
14. Ciurlionis Museum
Opened in 1921. The name of the talented artist and composer Mikaloyus Čiurlionis was given in 1944. The museum contains his paintings, manuscripts, letters and personal items, available to listen to recordings of the most famous musical works. Also presented are collections of Lithuanian paintings of past centuries, wooden sculptures, numismatics, and folk art objects. The museum funds today number about 330 thousand exhibits.
16. Military Museum named after Vytautas the Great
The military history of Lithuania, since ancient times, is presented in the expositions of this museum. It was founded in 1919. In its funds - about 200 thousand exhibits. The samples of military equipment, cold steel and firearms, ammunition and various military paraphernalia, archaeological finds, paintings, books and documents testify to past military operations. The memorial exposition of the museum in the hall of black marble is dedicated to everyone who died for the independence of Lithuania.
17. Art Gallery of M. илиilinskas
One of the best art museums in the country. It bears the name of the Lithuanian art collector Mikolas илиilinskas. Located in a modern building, specially built for the gallery in 1989. Here are unique examples of ancient Egyptian art, the work of Dutch, German and Italian painters, as well as Baltic authors, magnificent collections of porcelain and ancient tapestries. An exhibition has been organized for blind people.
18. Museum of the History of Lithuanian Medicine and Pharmacy
It was created in 1936. Located on Town Hall Square, in an old mansion of the XVI century. The museum has over 17 thousand exhibits. Among them are old pharmacy dishes, medicine bottles, scales, medical instruments, books, personal belongings of doctors and pharmacists, furniture and equipment for medical rooms and much more. The reconstruction of a Lithuanian pharmacy of the 19th century is of interest. Inspect the museum preferably with a guide.
19. Museum of Folk Life of Lithuania
A complex of old houses and farm buildings in a picturesque place Rumšiškės, 18 km from Kaunas. The largest ethnographic museum in Europe. Opened to visitors in 1974. On a territory of 175 hectares, the life of a traditional Lithuanian village of past centuries was recreated. Visitors have the opportunity to see the interior of residential buildings, get acquainted with folk crafts, ride a chaise ride, try national cuisine, and purchase Lithuanian souvenirs.
20. Museum of Lithuanian Aviation
It was established in 1990 on the territory of the oldest airfield in Lithuania. Expositions include about 40 pieces of equipment: gliders, airplanes, helicopters. Among the exhibits are models of aircraft, engines, uniforms of pilots, personal belongings of famous pilots, aviation signs of many countries, photographs and documents. Visitors have the opportunity to try out a real flight simulator. The pride of the museum is the rare ANBO-I aircraft, created in a single copy.
21. Sugihara House Museum
During the war years, the Japanese diplomat Tiune Sugihara helped the escaped prisoners of the Nazi camps leave the country by issuing them rescue transit visas. Thus, he saved the lives of more than 6,000 Jews, for which he received the title of “Righteous Among the Nations of the World”. The museum dedicated to him is located in the building of the former Japanese consulate. Opened in 2001. Here the consul’s office, living room, library are recreated, numerous photo and video documents are presented.
23. Historical Presidential Palace
The two-story mansion in a neobarochny style was built in 1846. Later, a small garden was set up around him. Since 1918 - the property of the Lithuanian government and the residence of the head of state. Until 1940, when Lithuania became part of the USSR, 3 presidents worked and lived here. There are monuments in the garden. Today, the palace building belongs to the Art Museum. There are exhibitions dedicated to former presidents and the history of the palace.
24. Zalgiris Arena
The largest multifunctional indoor arena in the Baltic countries. Built in 2011 on the banks of the Neman River. Designed for 15,000 spectators. Home venue of the альalgiris basketball club - the most titled of all Lithuanian clubs, the repeated winner of the championships of Lithuania and the former USSR, and in 1999 - the winner of the Euroleague. It is used not only for basketball matches, but also for other sports, as well as entertainment events and concerts.
26. Park Ajuolinas
Located in the picturesque residential area of аalyakalnis. Area - 84 ha. The oak grove in the park is the largest in Europe. The age of some giant oaks exceeds 300 years. This is all that remains of the large oak forest that surrounded the city, but was cut down in past centuries. There are other deciduous trees. The valley of the river Hirstupis flowing through the park is named after the poet Adam Mickiewicz. He loved to be here.
27. Lithuanian Zoo
The only zoo in the country. Located in Aguolinas Park. The year of foundation is 1938. About 3,000 animals live on an area of 16 hectares.Among them are kangaroos and hippos, giraffes and reindeer, monkeys and bison, and numerous representatives of cats. The pride of the zoo is the llamas, they participate in city parades and events. There is also a house, serpentarium, terrarium and aquarium. On the territory of the park there is a pet museum, children's attractions, a gift shop.
28. Kaunas funicular
Throughout Lithuania, this type of urban transport has survived only in Kaunas. To date, there are two lines on which colored cars have been moving for over 80 years. One of them, the oldest, is laid on the Жaliakalnis hill, the second leads to the top of Mount Aleksotas. In the early 90s, landing stations and wagons were thoroughly repaired. During the trip, music is played in them. Kaunas funiculars declared a cultural monument.
29. Observation deck on Mount Aleksotas
On the hill of Aleksotas is one of the best panoramic sites in Kaunas. From here you can see the Neman and Neris rivers, Town Hall Square, Kaunas Castle, bell towers and spiers of churches, the Жaljakalnis hill. You can climb to the observation deck by cable car, which has been working here since 1935. It connects the peak of Alexotas to the Old Town. Travel time is about 2 minutes. Those who wish can climb the stairs, for this you will have to overcome 250 steps.
30. Juniper Valley
Located on the banks of the Neman River, in the vicinity of the village of Arlaviškės. Juniper thickets occupy an area of 5 hectares and are recognized as a natural monument. The age of some bushes exceeds 100 years, and the height reaches 12 meters. The hiking trail through the valley above the cliff is recognized as the most picturesque study trail in Lithuania. Its length is more than 1 km. Between juniper thickets rare plants are found, as well as some species of butterflies.