Less than a hundred years ago, Poles constituted almost half of Kaunas's population. Today, there are less than 1% of them, but a native of Poland visiting this beautiful city will feel at home here. It is the largest industrial center in the country, but above all an important cultural center (second only to Vilnius).
While wandering through Lithuania, it is worth stopping at least for a weekend in Kaunas, one of the country's oldest cities. The more that it is located only 110 km from Vilnius.
Two ends of the Liberty Avenue
A must-see on a trip around Kaunas is a walk along the Liberty Avenue leading to the historic Old Town. It is a famous promenade, on both sides of which there are representative buildings (including government buildings, post office, theater). At the eastern end of the alley there is the parish church of St. Michael the Archangel, one of the city's best landmarks.
On the other side of the promenade you can see the ruins of a 14th-century castle. In the past, it aroused admiration with its size, moreover, it was surrounded by a moat 5 meters deep. Today, one of the four towers has remained, which is the seat of the Kaunas Castle Museum, and the Santakos parkas (walking areas) stretch around the former stronghold.
Churches of Kaunas
The huge Church of the Resurrection dominates the panorama of Kaunas. It stands on Góra Zielona, the summit of which can be reached by cable car. The relatively young building has had many experiences. During the Second World War, it was renamed a radio set factory, and its tower served as a radio mast. For a decade, concerts of choral and organ music have been held in the temple. There is a viewing point in the middle of the church tower. There are stairs leading to it, you can also go there by elevator.
The Kaunas market square is adorned with the largest Gothic church in Lithuania - the beautiful cathedral basilica of Saints Peter and Paul . The slender, built of red brick temple attracts the eye both from the outside and with its rich interior. Particular attention is paid to the 18th-century main altar, numerous paintings and vaults in the presbytery.
Other sacred monuments of the market square are: the Gothic-Renaissance church of St. Trinity Church and the Massalski Palace with a late Renaissance facade. Tourists are also attracted by the town hall, which is called by the inhabitants the "white swan" because of its beauty. Its slender tower is seven stories high. For over 30 years, the town hall building has been the seat of the wedding palace. It also houses the Ceramics Museum.
Religion and paganism
Near the square there is the oldest Catholic church in Lithuania - the Church of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary . Founded by the Grand Duke of Lithuania Witold, it bears his name. It was rebuilt many times, in the past it served as a church and military barracks.
In the immediate vicinity of Vytautas Church is Perkuno namai , or "Perkun's house". It is a gothic Hanseatic tenement house with a rather amazing appearance. The eye of the viewer is focused especially on the decorative gable of the building's façade. It is an example of late gothic, very rare in these areas. The common name of the building comes from a legend - apparently in the past a temple of Perkuna stood in its place.
Camping in Kaunas
Kaunas City Camping is located in the suburbs of Kaunas. For a parking space for a motorhome, we will pay EUR 8.6 per day - the price includes a parking space, access to showers and electricity. An adult's overnight stay costs 3.4 euros. You can come here with your pet (you pay the same amount for his stay, i.e. 3.4 euro).
The campsite is located by a lake and there are bus stops in the immediate vicinity. The lines that stop there run to the city center.
Compared to Vilnius, Kaunas may not be so beautiful or so rich in monuments, but it is undoubtedly noteworthy. Both because of the richness of churches and the beauty of nature inextricably intertwined with the city. Before leaving it, follow in the footsteps of the bard and go for a walk in Ažuolynas Park. We can find here not only the Mickiewicz Valley, but also a zoo.
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