Vilnius, Lithuania: Highlights of Nature, Culture and Europe (by Jessica)

Overview Vilnius

Lithuania. Yes, it is in Europe. No, Riga is not the capitol. No, they don’t speak Russian or Polish. Actually… they speak Lithuania, never expected, huh? Have you heard about the Baltic states, Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania are located between Poland and Russia. For 4 weeks now I call Vilnius, the capitol of Lithuania, my home and I am happy to be here.                                                  

I will tell you some special things about it:

It was half past 4 am when I started my journey. First from Saarland to Frankfurt airport and at 11 am the plane departed, I arrived in Vilnius at half past 2 pm. The first evening was a great experience. This city loves art! There was a festival with a water- and lase- based 3D performance on the River Neris and some Foodtrucks. Me and the group of friends I already know from the Macromedia Stuttgart tried some traditional food and we directly fell in love with it. Now imagine in Vilnius are a lot of bars, cafés, museums and every religion you can imagine is welcome. The people here love fashion, coffee and are open minded. You will always have a store in walking distance and bus stops are never far away. One of the most awesome things is: It is cheap! You actually can afford a whole apartment, food and public traffic, no problem.

Trakai Castle

Now let us talk about the environment. As I told you there are a lot of different cultures and religion. you will feel it while exploring the city, where there are many different churches. The museums show a lot of war objects, but also the development of today’s culture of Lithuania. If you want to visit Vilnius you have to make a City Tour, just because History and Stories can be found around every corner. I visited some accommodations in the former ghetto, not all of the Stories are happy ones. The 2nd world war was extremely terrible for the Jewish community in Lithuania. But to not dip any further into a sad part of history I want to tell you about some other visits: In the second week I explored a place called Trakai, a huge castle surrounded by water and it is truly looking like you would imagine paradise. I mean you are just a few kilometers away from Vilnius and you can find a place of untouched nature there too. I have planned more of these sightseeing tours and I want to travel to the Curonian Spit in nearer future. It seems like there we can find a beautiful national park, but also in the city of Vilnius you can find a green spot in one of the gorgeously designed parks.

Mindaugas the King of the international Office

Now about the school we are studying at. The VDK (Vilniaus Dizaino Kolegija, Vilnius College of Design) is situated in a big industrial building and has some very magnificent features. For example, they got a photo studio, which we are allowed to use and that’s not all… there are tailoring rooms and painting studios. For me the most special thing is the cafeteria where you can buy a really delicious lunch and desert. Most of it is national cuisine. The contact person for our stay is Mindaugas Latišenka and he is doing an awesome job. If you have any questions or problems, just go to Mindi and talk to him. You can absolutely feel save and he supports you in all situations, he even arranged transportation from the airport to our new apartment for us.

At last I want you to know that every one of our group acclimated quickly to the new life in Vilnius. The nervousness is gone and some of us feeling home sick now, but we all care for each other and are having fun with group activities and parties. At the college we found the other Macromedia students and we made a lot of new friends. I feel strongly connected with my fellow students and having this experience with them is a memory I want never to forget.

I hope you enjoyed my Blog until now, it will soon continue! Have a great time everyone. We will read from each other ????

Jessica Engstler

Photography made by Artemis Gianniki