Lithuanian People

Saturday, December 2, 2017 - 16:00

Did you know that there are more hot air balloons in Lithuania than there are Lithuanian people? Interesting enough, that’s true—Especially now I have your undivided attention. Today we’re going to dive into my experience with the Lithuanian people and this strangely beautiful country of theirs—Lithuania. Known by some as “the Land of Storks,” for it’s the home of more than 13,000 pairs of storks, Lithuania has a unique grace about it; like the rest of the Baltic states.

However, unlike Estonia and Latvia, Lithuania is a historical treasure that sets itself ahead of the others regarding drawing more and more travelers in every year. It’s not one of those locations that have that “one” spot that hooks adventurers in, but rather has plenty of sights that build an amazing experience for any traveler looking to take in beautiful landscapes and eclectic cities entwined with a historical feel.

Lithuanian People—Truly One of Kind

For starters, any experienced traveler will tell you that having an idea of what the countries people are like goes a long way in preparing how to handle most situations. Before your touchdown in Lithuania, I want to make sure you have a fair understanding of how the Lithuanian people can be based on my traveling experience here. Now, I should note this is my personal experience, and not necessarily 100% accurate about all Lithuanians; rather it's just something you should have in your mind while you’re there.

To start off, Lithuanians are kind and sensual people. They are extremely tight within their families, and it's that core that shows its colors more times than not. However, somewhat contradictory to that, the Lithuanian people are typically Libertarian minded people. It means that they generally will keep to themselves and not focus, assist, or acknowledge others.

Now, you may be too quick to label them rude or improperly mannered but we all use this Libertarian style, we just don’t like it when we’re on the other side of it. Lithuanians are very kind people, but with their recent history of WWII and the Soviet takeover (less than 30 years of new independence), some people still walk with an edge to them. Combine that with their natural tendency of shyness and being well reserved (not liking to display a lot of emotion), it’s easily understandable why they get unfairly labeled as being mean people. But nobody here should be stereotyped—Lithuanian people are truly peculiar in how they act, yet in my experience, they never were inherently mean or rude to me, they were quite kind and helpful when confronted in fact.

Culture in Lithuania

The culture in Lithuania is obvious and a little behind in the times for the most part. Women continue to follow traditional gender roles, and so do the men. Despite that, the family is the core of everyone life. Most families are incredibly tight knit and are the prime focus of social activities.

Also, Lithuanian people are very quirky, especially when it comes to superstitions. Whistling inside is a big no-no here, as whistling is believed to call upon evil and demonic spirits. Besides, it’s said that if a woman seeks to be married one day, that she should never sit in the corner—it’s an unlucky sign and if someone sees a woman in the corner it traditionally means unmarriageable material. Lastly, newlyweds, for the most part, are traditionally given black bread and salt as a gift, as this combination signifies good luck for the future.

Culture in Lithuania
Culture-in-Lithuania

Apart from their somewhat quirky and traditional social norms, Lithuanians are known for their intelligence, religion, and love of basketball. Lithuania is one of the world most educated countries where of a census poll concluded that two-thirds of its 2.8 million population speak at least two languages. Also, Lithuanians are some of the biggest fans and most talented Basketball teams in the world. Ranked 3rd in the world, only behind the USA and Spain. On the side of religion, Lithuanians were one of the last countries in Europe to convert to Christianity; despite the popularity of the Christianity religion here, some Lithuanians still practice Paganism (as most of the Baltic states do too).

This multicultural society (over 120 represented countries), can claim to be the best in the world in a couple of things. Since 2011, Lithuania was regarded as the country with the fastest upload and download speeds in the world. Also, the Lithuanian language is one of the oldest and unchanged languages in the world. Even older than German, Greek, Celtic, Slavic, and Latin.

If that's not enough for you, Lithuanian also is the only country in the world with their official scent—Scent of Lithuania is its official name and sums it up perfectly.

Nature and Geography of Lithuania

Similarly, to the other Baltic states, Lithuania’s landscape is virtually the same. Although, Lithuania is regarded as the most beautiful of the Baltics for many reasons. Lithuania is a land of gently rolling hills, luscious with green plant life; feeding into the rich and dense forests that occupy over one-third of the country. Scattered and entwined within this landscape is over 6,000 small lakes, and thousands of rivers and streams, and many National Parks that are protected.

Lithuania has a very moderate climate all year round. It's typically wet here a majority of the time, and your clothing choices should reflect this, or you’ll pay for it in the end. In total, Lithuania is about half the size of Scotland.

Lithuanian Travel Ideas

I found the sights in Lithuania to be truly unique and deeply rich in history. Take the capital city of Vilnius—Vilnius is the treasure all on its own. Apart from being one of the oldest cities in the country, this medieval town is home to some of the world most amazing Baroque styled buildings. Most poetically, this old jewel brilliantly blends with the modern direction wonderfully, leading to an incredible walk up and down the streets.

Most importantly, no matter where you go in Vilnius, drop into one of the hundreds of restaurants and order the Cepellani. Also known as a “zeppelin,” this stuffed potato dish with meat smothered in a sour cream sauce that will transport you on a roller coaster of flavor. No wonder the Lithuanian People love their national dish so much.

After you take in Vilnius, then you can take in some of Lithuania’s other most exciting sights, like Aukstajas Hill, Curonian Split, Aukštaitja National Park, Trakai Historical National Park, Hill of Crosses and the Devil Worshipers Museum.

Curonian Split is a 98-km dune along the coast that extends out into the sea creating a border between the Baltic Sea and Curonian Lagoon. While the beach is heaven for most of us, the darker side of Lithuania can be seen on a journey to the Hill of Crosses. A monument styled tribute where over 200,000 crosses have been left along this hill, displaying a most magnificent and hauntingly gorgeous spectacle that can compete with most places in the world. It’s something out of horror movie, but it’s truly a beautiful sight in person.

A conclusion about Lithuania

To sum it all up, Lithuania and the Lithuanian people are unique. Its population can be quite Libertarian towards everyone, but don’t let that stop you from communicating and asking for help if you need it. They’re beyond kind, and a few bad eggs shouldn’t spoil it for you.

Lithuania is a beautiful country that can easily take your breath away, as it can help you put on 10 pounds in a week from their starchy but delectable traditional cuisines. A must go to location for anyone—add this to your bucket list for sure travelers!

 

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