Kaunas Old Town
Kaunas Old Town contains some of the most emblematic places. The historic center is the ideal starting point for your vacation. You can admire splendid buildings in which a multitude of styles and architectures coexist wisely.
WHAT TO SEE IN KAUNAS OLD TOWN
CASTLE AND MONUMENT IN VYTIS
Kaunas Castle is one of the earliest examples of stone fortresses in the whole country. It dates back to 1300, and was built on the ashes of a previous medieval wooden castle. Although rebuilt after several changes, the Castle is one of the must-see stops on what to see in Kaunas. A real symbol of the city and the nation, so much so that it deserves its own shape on the Lithuanian currency!
A permanent art gallery is set up inside the Tower.
The gardens are well kept, with lots of greenery.
Further on, Niemen and Neris/Vilja Confluence Park offers a splendid glimpse of the city’s two powerful rivers meeting.
The Castle is open from Tuesday to Friday, from 10:00 to 18:00. Saturday, from 10:00 to 17:00. Closed on Sunday and Monday.
The ticket costs €3.00 per person.
In front of the Castle, the Monument to Vytis, in terms of importance and sense of belonging, has little to envy to the fortress. The Statue of the Warrior of Liberty, depicts the knight in armor with sword and shield. His coat of arms is one of the oldest in the country.
Vytis is one of the popular heroes, especially loved. Many proudly show it on flags, accessories, clothes and even on the car!
A few minutes’ walk away, you can admire the beautiful quadrangular square of the Town Hall. Not to be missed during the Christmas period, with the stalls, and all lit up.
The Town Hall is nicknamed the “White Swan” due to its profile reminiscent of the elegant animal. It dates back to the 16th century and represents a fine example of Renaissance architecture.
Inside is the Ceramics Museum, with artifacts from Kaunas and the surrounding area.
Open Tuesday to Sunday, 10am to 5pm.
PLACES OF WORSHIP
Near the Town Hall Square there are some of the most important religious buildings of Kaunas old town.
Kauno Šv. apaštalų Petro ir Povilo bazilika is the Kaunas Cathedral dedicated to the cult of Saints Peter and Paul. The works were completed in the first half of the 1600s.
A Catholic Basilica included in 1996 in the Register of Cultural Heritage of the Republic of Lithuania.
On the opposite side stands Pekuno Nama, also known as the “House of Thunder“. It is a splendid Gothic building, one of the most beautiful in all of Lithuania. The building belongs to the Jesuit order and inside there is a small museum dedicated to the Lithuanian and Polish poet Adomas Mickevicius.
It takes a few minutes on foot to reach the nearby Church of Vytautas the Great, located at Aleksoto str. 3. It is the oldest church in Kaunas, officially called the Church of the Holy Virgin Mary Leading to Heaven and is the oldest in Kaunas. It is also one of the first brick Gothic buildings built in the 1400s in Kaunas on the bank of the Nemunas River. The church belonged to the Franciscan monks. During the period of the Napoleonic wars, the Church was used as a depot for military munitions.
The Vytautas Bridge is the gateway to the historic center, and connects the old town of Kaunas with the Aleksotas district. It is surrounded by beautiful buildings and offers beautiful views both from the bridge and from below, walking along the riverside.
A famous anecdote is linked to the bridge according to which it took 13 days to be able to cross it. The reason was due to the fact that, once upon a time, the two banks belonged to the Russians and the other to the Poles. Each country adopted its own calendar (Julian and Gregorian) which differed 13 days from each other!