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Žemaitija

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The A11 road in May: from Plungė towards the coast.

Žemaitija (Samogitia in English) is a region in Lithuania.

Cities[edit]

  • Telšiai — unofficial capital of Samogitia and one of the largest towns in the region.
  • Kretinga
  • Mažeikiai
  • Palanga — coastal resort town, region's only window to the sea
  • Plungė
  • Šiauliai — a city which always was at the periphery of Samogitian and Aukštaitian regions, however throughout history it administratively belonged to the Duchy of Samogitia, hence it usually is associated with Samogitia. The fourth biggest city in the country and one of the four cities that are not assigned to any ethnographic region
  • Žemaičių Kalvarija — famous pilgrimage site, most visitors come in the beginning of July to visit the large church festival
Samogitia Tourism Information Centre in Telšiai central square.
Dubysa river valley.
Wooden church in Eigirdžiai, Telšiai district. Coordinates 56°0'34.99"N, 22°22'24.13"E.
Venta river in winter.
A complex of two 12-15 centuries hill-forts in Molavėnai, Raseiniai district, between Šiauliai and a former Tilsit city. Served as part of the first defensive line against German crusaders.

Other destinations[edit]

Understand[edit]

Talk[edit]

Get in[edit]

Get around[edit]

Most convenient transport is a car.

Buses, both suburban and intercity, are available and run regularly to and from all district centres (major town). Accessibility to villages vary, depends on concrete location.

The railway line almost duplicates the A11 highway and connects Šiauliai in the east with Kretinga in the west near the coast, then the railway turns south up to Klaipėda. The railway stretches south to Šilutė and further to Pagėgiai (both in Lithuania Minor region), then crosses the border to Kaliningrad Oblast. This section, from Klaipėda up to the border, currently is used for the freight trains only. Same applies to another railway line that stretches from Šiauliai to SW up to Pagėgiai.

The land is mostly hilly, still suitable for bicycling. One of the best ways to get around the region is to travel by car with the bicycles attached to it: you can get to the chosen area by car quite quickly, and then explore it riding the bike. This allows you to see the places that are inaccessible by car in the shortest possible time. Some well known places, like tops of hill-forts and some restricted areas, are accessible only by foot. If you travel by car with bikes, all three modes of getting around are in your disposition.

Canoeing in Samogitian rivers allow you to see the nature and landscapes that can't be acquainted in other ways: although you sometimes can see and recognize the presence of the river in vicinity of the road, access to it often is complicated. Certain rivers qualifies as nice, this should serve as a hint of recommendation to go canoeing there.

Apart the transport, one of the ways of getting around is the right choice of the place to set your base, from where you can do the short or long trips any direction. Manors and country tourism homesteads or mini resorts are located away from the urbanized areas and agricultural lands, surrounded by beautiful landscapes; their hosts are ready to supply you with anything, just you must to name your wishes. It is rather passive but productive and pleasant way of getting around the region.

See[edit][add listing]

  • Energetic Labyrinths (Energetiniai labirintai), Likšai village, Plungė district (NE of Plateliai lake, reachable by the road No 2302, turn SW at 56.058133, 21.925286), +370 611 34900 (). Daily 09:00-20:00. Set within the territory of Samogitian National Park in a homestead that was founded in 1804. Private initiative of the owners: labyrinths aim to help the person in his/her search for inner self, finding the answers to some questions and solving some problems, finding the inner peace and fulfilling dreams. Currently there are 5 labyrinths which have different goals, different geometric shape and different length; there are also 3 other structures. Adult €2.7, children, schoolkids, students and seniors €1.5. (56.055876,21.918865)
  • Historical objects
  • Museum of Eight-wheeled Vehicle (Aštuonračio muziejus), Vyšnių St 22, Nemakščiai village, Lt-60383 Raseiniai district (~25km W of Raseiniai by the A1 motorway viaduct at 55.424072, 22.764263 , turn north and ride ~780 m), +370 687 49215 (). By prior arrangement. A private museum devoted to the local nobleman Pšemislovas Neveravičius, who lived there in c. the end of 19th century and invented the first self-propelled eight-wheeled vehicle in the world. Among the exhibits there is a reconstructed self-propelled eight-wheeled vehicle itself, various antique stuff like furniture, gramophones, radios, dairy processing equipment, household items. There is a modest collection of "vintage" cars, such like GAZ 51, Volga 21 and Moskvitch which was used by the Soviet militia. (55.426661,22.7697)
  • Mythological sites and objects
  • Natural sites
  • Observation towers - there are several noteworthy observation towers in the region.
  • In Samogitia National Park:
Barstytaliai - 5 m height at the edge of 35 ha bog (nature reserve), coordinates 56.148609, 21.862628 .
Jogaudai - in recreational area at the ​​defunct quarry by the pool, coordinates 55.999211, 21.944397 .
Siberija - 15 m height, coordinates 56.030478, 21.814432 .
  • In Salantai Regional Park:
Kalnalis - 15 m height, at the NE edge of Kalnalis village ~60 m east of the 226 road, coordinates 56.017191, 21.541415 . Accessible from Kalnalis centre down the path that begins from the wooden Saint Lawrence Church (coordinates 56.015538, 21.54056 ) and stretches north parallel to the road for 300 m.
  • In Tytuvėnai Regional Park:
Tytuvėnai - 15 m height on a 22 m height hill, 3.35km SE of Tytuvėnai town centre by Sedulos St, coordinates 55.589995, 23.24002.
  • In Varniai Regional Park:
Aukštagirės apžvalgos bokštas - 15 m height, at the southern edge of the Regional Park, N of the A1 motorway in Šilalė district between Laukuva and Kaltanėnai, coordinates 55.612535, 22.32789 . Accessible from the Old Samogitian Highway No 197 by turning NE at Bilioniai and driving up to Aukštagirė Forest at 55.612027, 22.3265 , then turn west into the forest itself and go down the path for 120 m.
  • In Venta Regional Park:
Venta and Virvytė confluence - 5 m height, at the observation site by confluence of two beautiful rivers, east of Viekšniai village, south of both No 155 road and Venta river, coordinates 56.230461, 22.551054 . Accessible from the south: first, cross Venta river in Viekšniai village, then go east up to Virvytė river, there is a footbridge across Virvytė at 56.226689, 22.553287 , then turn north along the river.
  • Stone Museum (Akmenų muziejus), Office: Salantai St 2, Mosėdis, LT-98271 Skuodas district (NW corner of the region), Guide booking +370 440 76291 on workdays (, fax: +370 440 76352). Administration M-Th 08:00-17:00, F 08:00-16:00, lunch break 12:00-12:45. Expositions: summer season 1 May - 31 October 10:00-20:00 daily; winter season 1 Nov - 30 Apr 08:00-17:00 daily. It started as a hobby of local doctor Vaclovas Intas who arrived to Mosėdis in 1957. Some ten years later the collection of thousands of stones and pebbles became too large to keep it in the yard, it was decided to designate a territory along the Bartuva Rivulet valley and establish an outdoor museum-park there. On 26 Feb 1979 the National Museum of Rare Stones was established. In 2005 it was renamed after its founder and so remains till date: Vaclovas Intas National Stone Museum; it is run under the supervision of the Ministry of Environment. Coordinates of the outdoor exposition in the park 56.164152, 21.571538 . Adult €2.5, kid €1, preschool children free of charge. (56.165194,21.574212)

Itineraries[edit]

Do[edit][add listing]

Festivals[edit]

  • Kilkim žaibu (Let's Arise As Lightning), Varniai, Telšiai district (2km W of Varniai town on the N shore of Lūkstas lake, the place is allotted for wild camping, scouting, outdoor recreation and various kinds of festivals), +370 612 72742 (). Weekend on the 2nd half of June. The annual open air festival of black metal and other contemporary extreme music united with archaic folklore and the accents of Baltic culture. The name reflects the spirit of this event and refers to the Baltic mythology. Access from the south: turn north from Kaunas-Klaipėda motorway A1 at 55.559508, 22.219997; from the north: turn south from Šiauliai-Palanga highway A11 at 56.005433, 22.276358. By train: you have to get to Telšiai first, then get a bus to Varniai. By bus from major cities: there may be buses that go via Varniai, though it may be more convenient to get to Telšiai first and then get a local transport to Varniai from there. One ticket €30, price rise a little about a month before the event. (55.727025,22.338524)
  • Naisių vasara (Naisiai Summer), Naisiai village, Šiauliai district (~18km NE of Šiauliai, truly at the edge of both Žemaitija and Aukštaitija regions), +370 611 33333. July, exact date is announced at the website and Facebook. Festival for families, adults and children, features various musical and theatrical events during the weekend. Some other events: jousting, medieval dance, fakir performances, Žemaitukas (historic pony breed from Samogitia) National Cup, workshops of medieval craftsmen and folk artists. Alcohol is not tolerated. Most of events, camp sites and parking are free of charge.
  • Summer Music Open Air Varniai, Telšiai district (2km W of Varniai town on the N shore of Lūkstas lake, the place is allotted for outdoor recreation and various events), Accommodation in camp cabins: +370 698 50292 (). Weekend on the second half of July, official opening on Sa 12:00. Electronic music festival. Some of leisure entertainments: poker tournaments, aromatherapy, massage and lectures, trap trail, kinect games, activities in “Good Time Area” and “Creativity Pockets”, water cycle race, beach soccer tournament, beach volleyball tournament. Ticket €14, tent €1.5, car parking within territory €3. (55.727025,22.338524)
  • Barn Theater Festival (Klojimo teatrų festivalis), Parkas St 2, Kurtuvėnai, LT-80223 Šiauliai district (Barn of Kurtuvėnai manor estate, Kurtuvėnai Regional Park, west of the A12 highway), (). Every two years on the last weekend of July; festival is superposed with Saint James feast. Traditional festival of amateur theatres featuring performances in all lithuanian dialects. Events due to the large number of participants often extend beyond Kurtuvėnai village to the neighbouring settlements. Performances and most of the other events are free of charge.  edit
  • Satta Festival Takes place at Šventoji resort or one of the few other resorts in close vicinity: sometimes Palanga, sometimes Pape (Beach of the Baltic sea), (). Weekend on about the middle of August. Annual electronic contemporary and old school dance music festival: rave, techno, drum and bass, funk, dub, DJs. Prohibited: filming/photography, any alcohol and drugs, glass containers. Ticket €30-55.
  • International Mikołaj Ogiński Festival (Tarptautinis Mykolo Oginskio festivalis), Parko St 1, LT-90117 Plungė, (, fax: +370 448 52492). Weekend on the end of August. Annual music festival that takes place in Count Ogiński Manor House, see the Plungė article for details. Free of charge.  edit
  • Harvest Festival (Derliaus šventė), J.Basanavičius St 12, LT-75136 Šilalė (Centre of Šilalė town, Southern Samogitia, south of the A1 motorway), (). Last weekend of September. The exact date may slightly vary, check the Naujienos (News) section at Šilalė Culture Centre website. Traditional fest of farmers and rural communities, features a rich fair of autumn harvest goodies. Various traditional country bands from Samogitia, Semigalia, Kaliningrad Oblast and even some more remote areas entertain everyone who comes to have a good time. The typical lithuanian farm-made and home-made food that is sold at the fair: white cheese, sour cream, butter, honey, rustic smoked bacon and sausages, homemade kvass, rustic pudding, rustic old-fashioned cakes and gingerbread, many sorts of other traditional lithuanian delicacies. Visiting the fair is free of charge.  edit

Other[edit]

  • Bicycling
  • Canoeing
  • Fishing
  • Hiking
  • Horse riding
  • Hunting
  • Scuba diving in Plateliai lake and the Baltic sea
  • Trips by car
  • Žemaitija culinary tasting

Eat[edit][add listing]

Drink[edit][add listing]

Stay safe[edit]

Get out[edit]




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