Tourist Guide
 Bars
 

Lithuanian 
Tourist 
Guide


Vilnius:
An Introduction

Getting Oriented
 
Arrival
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Vilnius

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Shopping
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Travel
What's New
What's On
Yellow Pages

Other Lithuanian-related 
tourist articles: 
Letter from Little Lithuania
The Stalin World Theme Park 
Magical Curonion Spit

Zappamania in Lithuania
Jewish Vilnius
Ghosts and Goblins
Lithuanian Jazz
Wine: A Baltic Guide
What's in a name?
The Anyksciai Grove

Tidbits

Estonian Guide

Latvian Guide

Links

 

 

 


Soviet-era bars were a disaster. These days there are plenty of above-average to excellent drinking holes in the Lithuanian capital. Also see What's to Drink and Mircrobreweries for a listing of some of the better Lithuanian beers and liqueurs. 

Astorija: (J-3) Didžioji 35/2, tel. 236-0840. Open:12-24. A fabulous little bar inside the Radisson, serving some of the best draught beer in Lithuania. Pricey, but still cheaper than anything you’ll find in the West. 

Bix: (D-5) Etmonų 6, tel. 262-7791. Open:11-02; Thu., Fri., Sat. 11-05. The bar that was founded by and named after a once-notorious local rock band remains better than many. It can get a bit boisterous in the main bar area, especially during the weekend, and so taking a break with the pool tables upstairs may be a better option. 

Brodvėjus: (J-2) Mėsinių 4, tel. 210-7208. Open:12-05; Sun. 12-02. Two bars and a dancehall, skinny local babes and the occasional tipsy car mechanic from Iceland all await you in a firm favorite location that’s kept up its standards without being overly pretentious. In keeping with their eclectic style, classical music concerts are staged most Sunday evenings. Recommended if time is short in the city and you need something everyone will like. 

The Globe: (F-4) Bernadinų 8/8, tel. 266-58 85. Open:11-24. Reassuringly expensive and brimming with well-behaved foreigners, find this welcome retreat with its large sofas and (gasp) thoughtful staff tucked away upstairs in the equally wonderful Shakespeare Hotel. 

Fashionbar: (C-4) Trakų 2, tel. 243-0777. Open:07:30-01, Thu.-Sat. 07:30-06, Sun. 09-24. The current favored watering hole of the city’s wannabe überslick, it’s cheaper to subscribe to Fashion TV and watch it at home with a takeaway lager, but that’s somehow missing the point. Variety is the spice of life, and as there’s nothing quite like this anywhere else in town it should be applauded for its unique take on life. www.ftv.lt 

Iki Aušros: (D-5) Aušros Vartų 15, tel. 8610-04131. Open:19-02; Fri.-Sat. 19-04. If you thought the bill at The Globe was pocket money then try spending a few hours in here. Featuring strip club prices without having to lie to the wife about where you’ve been, Vilnius’ original cocktail bar is where the cream of the cream come to relax and enjoy the ambience, juggling barmen and illuminated ice cubes in your drinks to boot. 

Literatu Svetaine: (G-2) Gedimino 1, tel. 261-1889. Open:11-24; Fri., Sat. 11-03. The long-awaited reopening of one of this magazine’s favorite conservative watering holes reveals the kind of facelift you’d expect to see on the bastard child of Barbarella and a Moscow hairdresser. Glitzy kitsch madness for fruity people tipping fizzy drinks down their designer throats. Horrifying and very welcome indeed. 

Paparazzi: (G-1) Totorių 3, tel. 212-0135. Open:17-03. Fri, Sat 17-06. Another welcome addition to the capital, this time in the shape of a cocktail lounge complete with great décor and a well-heeled clientele. Excellent for after-work drinks, post-club intimacy or just spending the entire evening knocking back fancy booze in a glorious atmosphere, you could easily fool yourself into thinking you were drinking in Milan.  

Prospekto Pub: (G-2) Gedimino 2, tel. 262-2019. Not to be confused with the dreadful downstairs Kukabara, Prospekto Pub is precisely what you get if you put two of the city’s most famous expat haunts into paper bag and shake hard. Thankfully, they mixed the good bits with the good bits and came up with a music venue with a Wild West bar attached. Excellent for a beer after work or large groups of tourists due to the sheer size of the place. 

SkyBar: (B-4) Konstitucijos 20 (inside the Reval Hotel Lietuva), tel. 272-6272. Open:16-01; Fri., Sat. 16-02:30. Wow! Picture-perfect views of Vilnius. A must for tourists, even recommended as a first stop to get your bearings straight before you explore the rest of the capital. Beside great views, they also offer a fine selection of cocktails and snacks. www.revalhotels.com  

The PUB: (I-2) Dominikonų 9, tel. 261-8393. Open:11-02; Fri., Sat. 11-05. The brainchild of a group of professional English drinkers is now in local hands, but retains much of its original British bar style. Two areas in which to drink, plus a fairly respectable menu and a large clubish area out the back which also doubles as the city’s only pub quiz venue once a month.  

Trečias Brolis: (F-2) Sirvido 6, tel. 261-2404. Open:10-04; Fri. 10-05. The Third Brother is located in the Writer’s Union building just behind the Central Post Office. Enter through the heavy door and head to the left of the elegant staircase to discover where Lithuania’s hard-drinking, chain-smoking, hard-up writers come to argue and brawl. Drunken dancing daily. All the faded glory of Soviet days gone by that you might be looking for. An experience. 

Microbreweries

Avilys: (G-2) Gedimino 5, tel. 212-1900. Open:11-01. Popular with locals, expats and tourists alike, the word Avilys is Lithuanian for beehive, which as well as being a play on words that can be translated as meaning a buzzing place for good friends also refers to what’s on offer inside. The delicious home-brew beer for example features one (medaus) made from honey, which is also used in the food (try the beer ice-cream). Great fun for groups not least because of the great towers of beer they also sell. 

Būsi Trečias: (G-1) Totorių 18, tel. 231-2698. Open:11-23. A comfortable ground floor bar that wouldn’t be out of place in some of the more eccentric areas of London, and a monster upstairs space to compliment, but notable really for the beer they brew on the premises. For those who need to know these things, būsi trečias means “you’ll be the third,” which is a local way of saying that luck isn’t on your side.

 What's to Drink

Lithuania's beer market is not considered as strong as Estonia's or Latvia's. Nevertheless, there are some local brews that can compete with very good foreign beers. The most popular among them are Utenos and Kalnapilis.
Lithuania is also a great place for vodka. The best brand is probably Kvietine.
But as with its northern neighbors, Lithuania has its own set of liqueurs to spring on unsuspecting travelers. Some favorites are the strong honey liqueur Krupnikas, as well as the multi-fruit-based liqueurs, such as Palanga or Dainava. Overall, the choice of liqueurs is much wider in Lithuania than in Estonia or Latvia.
Midus, or mead, is a magical, potent honey concoction. Another good drink is gira, which is made from grains and flavored with fruits. Also worth trying is kveisas, a beer-like drink made from fermented birch sap.
There are also some nice wines produced in Lithuania, many by a winery in Anyksciai district. Their specialty is fruit wine.

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