Kategorija: Globe

The Oldest Name of Great Britain

Two thousand years ago, in the year fifty five before our era…
Heavy clouds are low over a stormy sea. Eighty ships are sailing on the grey waters. They are galleys, Roman galleys, struggling forward to the unknown land.
Julius Caesar is on the first  galley, he is surrounded by his centurions. All are looking intently at the distant shore.
“By Jupiter!” says Julius Caesar, “is that a cloud in front or a mountain covered with snow?”
“Where? Over there?”
“Oh,” says one of the centurions, “those are cliffs, I can see them well!”
“Yes, they are cliffs – and they are white.”
“The land behind them must be white, too.”
“It is a White Land” exclaims Julius Caesar. “We shall call it Albion.”
“Albion, Albion!” shouted the others.
Alba in Latin means white, and the name Albion remains to this day.

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Text: Markova N. This is London. Kaunas: Šviesa, 1967.
Photo: MALCOLUMBUS

Five reasons to visit and five things to see in Lithuania

Not very big and not very famous, but green and optimistic  – that is how I would describe my home country Lithuania. People do travel to Lithuania and are often even surprised that such interesting and beautiful place is undeservedly ignored by the travelers. Due to this fact I would like to present five reasons to travel to Lithuania and five things to see when you come here. This 5+5 list is subjective, based on my personal opinion and experiences, likes and dislikes, there are definitely more reasons to choose Lithuania as your holiday destination and there are more objects worth your time, but if you have never considered an idea of traveling to Lithuania, then this list is just what you need.

Five reasons to travel to Lithuania:

1. Lithuania is a geographical centre of Europe. 25 km north of Vilnius, between Purnuškės and Bernotai you can visit a stone that marks the geographical midpoint of Europe. It is not a bombastic tourist attraction and scientists have changed their opinion about the exact midpoint after the place was already prepared for visitors, but it is still worth visiting. It is a great feeling to stand in that place and say to yourself: ‘I’m in the middle of Europe!’

2. It is easy to reach Lithuania. If you decided to go to Lithuania you can simply relax and go there, because you will not face any geographical or political difficulties. Lithuania is not surrounded by huge mountains or hidden in the middle of oceans. It is simple to head to Lithuania with a car, a bicycle, a train or a plane. You may even reach it with a ferry (from Germany, Sweden, England, France, Netherlands, Denmark and Norway).

3. English language is on the wave in Lithuania. Quite a big percent of lithuanians speak English (especially the younger generation), so you shouldn’t feel isolated or frustrated when you come here. In most of the places visited by tourists you will also find the basic information in English. Ordering a room in a hotel or food in cafe shouldn’t cause you any unexpected troubles.

4. Cheap holidays and cheap traveling. Compared with other countries Lithuania has quite low prices of goods and services, therefore your wallet will not face the feeling of emptiness in the end of your holidays. Of course, if you choose the most popular places and entertainments, you will pay more, but you can always find cheaper but still good suggestions for spending your time. Besides, the fuel prices are quite low in Lithuania and there are no road charges for cars.

5. Choosing Lithuania as your holiday destination is original. While others choose spending holidays in Italy, Turkey or Thailand, you can dare to make a more original decision – travel to Lithuania. Maybe you will notice surprise in your friends’ faces when you tell them your decision or they will even ask you “Lithuania? Is it in Europe?”, anyway no one will blame you for not being original.

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If my mentioned reasons to visit Lithuania sounded reasonable for you and you decided to travel to Lithuania, I want to present five things worth seeing in Lithuania. Once again I have to remind that these things are not most popular ones, but they are the most interesting for me. So there are they:

1. Lithuanian folk museum in Rumšiškės. It is an open-air museum in Rumšiškės, on the shore of Kaunas Reservoir (largest artificial lake in Lithuania). Museum represents the casual life of lithuanian villagers in XVIII – XX ages. The museum that is divided into ethnographical zones has 91420 exhibits.

2. Castles and manors. There are many castles and manors in Lithuania. Apart from most popular castles (Gediminas’ Tower, Trakai Island Castle, Kaunas Castle) you may visit less popular but rather beautiful castles like Panemunė Castle or Biržai Castle. Recommended manors are: Užutrakis Manor House, Pakruojis Manor House and Taujėnų Manor House.

3. Kūlgrinda. Kūlgrinda is a secret path under the water cobbled with stones. Usually it is made in a lake or a swamp. Ancient lithuanians used such paths to escape from the enemies. There are several secret paths remained in Lithuania and there is a real chance to take a walk on kūlgrinda in Regional Park of Varniai.

4. Curonian spit. It is a peninsula that separates Curonian Lagoon from the Baltic Sea. It is a unique wonder of nature, that attracts people with it’s sandy dunes and great forests. There are small villages (Juodkrantė, Pervalka, Preila, Nida, Smiltynė) in Curonian Spit and they are all different, all unique.

5. The Treetop Walking Path in Ankykščiai. This sightseeing tower in Regional Park of Anykščiai invites not only to climb up to 35 meters height but also to take a look at the Tower itself as it is an interesting solution of architecture. It is also great that the entrance to the Treetop Walking Path is free.

(c) Fabula Saulė, 2016. All rights reserved. You may not use this content without author’s permission.

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