LITHUANIA. Lithuania in the W orld. Lithuania in E urope. The State of Lithuania. Lithuania is an
Lithuania is an
independent and democratic republic. In Lithuania, the powers of the State are exercised by the Seimas (the Parliament), the President of the Republic, the Government, and the Judiciary. The scope of powers is defined by the Constitution. Public authorities serve the people.
Territory:65 300 km2: Lithuania is the largest of the three Baltic countries, twice the size of Belgium.
Borders:Inland borders with Latvia, Belarus, Poland and Russia (Kaliningrad) total 1,747 km. The Belarusian border is the longest, at 724 km. Coastline totals 99 km.
The Old Town, historical centre of Vilnius, is one of the largest in Eastern EuropeVILNIUS
Night life has not only been intense but also diverse for several years now in Vilnius. The multitude of bars and nightclubs offers freedom of choice for people with varied tastes and preferences. People in this business must be right when they say that it is becoming increasingly harder to find a niche here.
However, the galaxy Nightclub established at the Forum Palace entertainment center became a fashionable venue as soon as it opened its doors. The connoisseurs of night life in Vilnius maintain that one can run into many famous people of Lithuania there. No matter what you want – to have a good time at a disco, to quietly listen to jazz or just to have a chat with your friends – you certainly have a lot of places to choose .
In 1989 scientists of National Geographic Institute of France gave the description of the European geographic centre andapplying the scientific method of gravitation centres appointed that this centre is located in the North from Vilnius (26 km), near Purnuskes village.
The center of Europe, as estimated in 1989 by scientists of the French National Geographic Institute, is in Lithuania. It is 19 km. North of Vilnius, the Lithuanian capital. Gintaras Karosas , a young artist, decided to perpetuate the center of the Old Continent with the language of art. He created an open-air museum of sculpture in an aut- of- the- way neglected forest. The impressive terrain of the park – hillocks, hollows, small ponds – offers a wonderful background for exhibits. International symposiums of sculpture have been held in the Park of Europe since 1993.
The museum of the Park of Europe is believed to be one of the most interesting open – air museums in the world. Visitors are attracted by the opportunity to stay for a while in the center of the European continent, to see the world’s largest armchair filled with water, to stand under the world’s largest cobweb in the shape of sails, or to swing a boulder weighing several tons…
Open Air Museum of Lithuania in Rumšiškės. An area of 175 ha. Contains over 100 folk architecture monuments brought from various places of Lithuania. The museum presents authentic environment, exterior and interior of the 18th the 20th c. Lithuanian homesteads with household utensils.Various ethnographic festivals organized in the Museum of Rumšiškės attract crowds of participants.
The historical residence of the rulers of Lithuania. The castle was founded on the Galve lake in the end of the 14th c. - the beginning of the 15th c. There is a permanent exhibition open in the castle. In 1991 Trakai national park was established, covering the area of 8 thousand ha. The area contains lakes, forests, the little towns of Old and New Trakai, the castles of the peninsula and the island. The Great Hall of Trakai Castle.
The Sea Festival begins on the last weekend in July, in Klaipeda. This festival was arranged in 1934. The Sea Festival that goes three days has become a traditional event people are looking forward to more eagerly than to any other. About one million people who are sure they see a vestige of sailor’s striped shirt beneath their street clothes come to festival every year. Since 1994, Sea Day has been officially recognized as a commemorative day in Lithuania. The organizers, assisted by the ruler of the seas, Neaptune, who sails down the Dane river, reminds the public of the significant role of the sea history of civilization, and about maritime traditions. During the Sea Festival of 2003 “Moor your boat in Klaipeda”, a cruise ship terminal was opened. The initiators of the festival turn the whole city into the large ship on the last day with an impressive carnival.
Neringa is the Lithuanian part of the Curonian Spit, a long and narrow sand peninsula that seperates the Curonian Lagoon from the Baltic Sea. This natural resort is listed as UNESCO World Heritage site..
Now pieces of amber that waves throw onto the Baltic shore, remind a legend about Jūratė’s palace at the bottom of the Baltic Sea. Amber also is known, as the gold of the Baltic Sea, is fossilized pine resin. The sea usually washes ashore only small pieces, weighing 100- 300 gramms. The largest humps weigh 6- 10 kilograms. They are kept in museums. Amber is yellow, less often white, bluish, green, or brown. A piece of amber can contain a reptile’s slough, a swarm of mosquitoes, bees, and ants. Amber with such inclusion is highly valued by scientists and collectors. The Museum of Amber opened in the palace of Count Feliksas Tiškevičius in Palanga forty years ago. The pride of the museum of Amber is the Stone of Sun weighing 3.526 kilograms. Nowadays decorations, boxes and other artifacts made by the amber craftsmen from Juodkrantė, Palanga and Šventoji are taken all the way to Western Europe and North America.
Ballooning, having become a way of life to many, and the aim of life to sportsmen, is becoming more and more popular in Lithuania and the entire world. Lithuanian balloonists have been participating in international hot – air – balloon competitions for 15 years. They achieve good results and make the name of Lithuania widely known.
The oak is often mentioned in the Lithuanian folklore.
Every four years Lithuanians from all over the world, as well as separate regions in Lithuania – Aukštaitija, Žemaitija, Dzūkija, Suvalkija, - gather together to sing folk songs, dances and culture.
Lithuania’s Eurovision Song Contest entrants, LT United, and their song We Are TheWinnersdeclare themselves the winners of a competition in which they haven’t even competed yet, and in which we don’t reckon they’ve got a snowflake’s chance in hell of winning.
Some say that Lithuanians, besides being of the Catholic faith, also worship basketball. If there still remains any lingering doubt, the night of September 15, 2003, was a reassurance. After the Lithuanian men’s team won the 33rd European championship , the entire country miraculously changed. People who had not taken much interest in basketball before, celebrated the victory in the streets together with hundreds of thousands of fans.
Names of many Lithuanians have been etched in gold in the world history of basketball : M. Paulauskas, A. Sabonis, V. Chomičius, Š. Marčiulionis, R. Kurtinaitis. After Lithuania has become independent, basketball also made its name known far and wide.