Christmas time in Vilnius
Vilnius in December was a frosty story in 2022. Rarely the temperature was more than -10 degrees and the sun didn’t showed up apart from a few occasions. Never the less it wasn’t complete darkness. I have never been to any other place that has been so beautiful decorated with Christmas lights all over the city. It felt like a fairytale. If you ever have difficulties to decide where to head for getting in Christmas mode you do need to consider a trip to Lithuania. The below magnificent Christmas three is located near Vilnius Cathedral at the central square and has 700 candles that symbolize the age of the city.
Running in the cold
Said it was cold right? Running outside when it is more than 10 degrees minus is not that great. In Vilnius the wind was more or less also there all the time making the freezing factor higher. Never the less I managed to go for a few runs along Neris river which floats through the whole city. It is a really enjoyable walk and running path that has to be explored while visiting the city.
City center of Vilnius
The city center is quite wide spread. If you like to watch buildings this is a perfect place. From Ortodox churches to presidental palaces and an extremely cozy old town are among things you have to check out. There is also a whole range of buildings from the Soviet times to explore.
I convinced my colleague that ice skating was a great idea so one evening we headed to Lukiškės Prison 2.0 where they have a beautiful skating rink during the winter. The setting was inside an old prison and they also had a few food trucks. You needed to book a slot of 45 minutes and it costed 6 EUR inclusive rental skates. But if you have your own skates I would recommend to bring them. The ones I got made me look like a first timer although I am a fairly good skater since I more or less lived on the ice skating rink when I was a kid. They also had cute penguins for the younger generation skaters but I could not resist bringing them for a ride.
Gediminas castle tower
A must do in Vilnius is to walk up the hill to the viewpoint at Gediminas castle tower. It is not a steep walk but if you cannot or doesn’t want to walk for some reason it is also possible to take a tram up to the top. Like other view points you get great sights of the city. Even if you not pay the entrance fee to the tower you can enjoy the city from above.
The replublic of Uzepio
This area is a bit hidden beyond the main square and parks but worth a visit. It is a more alternative area and you find restaurants and bars here. It is actually not just an alternative area but also an own republic. It has its own flag, own unofficial currency and own president. You can read more about the constitution HERE.
Vilnius Christmas run
Did you know that Vilnius host a fantastic Santa run? I did not. At the 10th of December I participated in the 12K race that was two times a 6K lap around the central part of the city. Everyone was dressed up to various degrees in Santa outfits and it was just a lot of fun. Rather tough since more than 1K each lap was more than 10 centimeters snow jog. I aimed for finishing under one hour and did with three minutes marginal which made me very happy since it was just a week after Valencia marathon. Can strongly recommend runners to head to Vilnius this weekend next year. You can participate in 12K, 6K, 3K or a kidsrun.
Old town of Vilnius
An extremely cozy part of winter wonderland in Vilnius is the old town. The place is filled with nice restaurants and bars and during December there are loads of outdoor places serving hot mulled wine.
During Christmas time there is a competition ongoing among the places in the old town who makes the most beautiful decorations so you can expect the most out of the most.
Sounds like a great place to be in December right? if you are lucky you get snow. If not you can get only cold or even worse just darkness. No matter of weather it is a great weekend escape.
/ Pernilla that had a good time in Vilnius