White bows, black sheep
We will probably not find an area full of legends and stories as Anykščiai region, which has so many picturesque surroundings and interesting sights. Here we will also find the birthplaces of the famous classics of Lithuanian literature Antanas Baranauskas, Antanas Vienuolis, Jonas Biliūnas.
We will go to Liudvika and Stanislovas Didžiulai homestead-museum. During the press ban, the homestead had a press distribution center. The old wardrobe, which has still survived in the facility, hid the entrance to the partition from the eyes of the gendarmes, where the forbidden Lithuanian press was kept, was brought by booksellers. Here, thanks to visual material, narration and tasks, we will delve into booksmugling as a historical phenomenon, evaluate the difficulties of the Lithuanian press in the course of history, write with a goose feather, play in an improvised game “Booksmuglers-Gendarmes”.
We will visit the first memorial museum in Lithuania – the barn of the poet and bishop Antanas Baranauskas, where the famous poem “Anykščiai forest” was created, the memorial house-museum of the writer Antanas Vienuolis-Žukauskas, which has an exposition related to the writer’s life and work.
We will climb and reach the “Light of Happiness”. “Light of Happiness” is a tombstone of writer Jonas Biliūnas on Liudiškės Hill. The writer was buried there, and a monument erected on his grave is called the “Light of Happiness”. Not only the local Anykščiai people, but also the guests from all over Lithuania believe that this hill is magical and that you can get happiness here. True, if you want the desire to come true, you have to come up with it by climbing the steep 86-step stairs towards the Light of Happiness, not talking to anyone.
We will move back in time hundreds of years ago, when wooden castles stood in the territory of Lithuania. We will go to Šeimyniškėliai mound, on which once stood the largest castle in Eastern Lithuania. It is believed that the castle of the Lithuanian ruler Mindaugas was there. In the courtyard of a medieval castle next to the mound, we will test the accuracy of the eye and the strength of the hands by shooting from bows or throwing a spear.
Going to the only Horse Museum in Lithuania, where we will learn many interesting things about horses, agricultural tools and vehicles, we will also see unique exhibits of philately, war and wood carvings. We will have the opportunity to go horseback riding.
We will also visit the Horse Museum in a real 20th century in a high-rise homestead reminiscent of the beginning, where the hostess will meet us. Here we will talk about bees and the tradition of old beekeeping, friends’ holidays. The hostess will tell you about bee products, their benefits and applications in antiquity and the present. You will learn about wax, its use in various fields, candle production methods. We will be able to try one of the oldest ones ourselves – casting candles on a circle, and each one will drop a candle. As the wax hardens, you will taste a country meal and play ancient Lithuanian games.
Here we will walk through the tops of the trees – the Lajų trail. This is the first such trail in the Baltic States and throughout Eastern Europe. Here we will rise from the ground to the tops of the trees, and after climbing its observation tower, located at a height of 21 m, we will see the bends of the River Šventoji and the panorama of the famous Anykščiai forest. We will also see the most famous and the second largest stone in Lithuania – Puntukas stone. According to the legend, the devil carried a stone of greatness with purity, and wanted to throw it on the church of Anykščiai, but the roosters sang and the stone remained in the barn. The bas-reliefs of Lithuanian pilots who crossed the Atlantic Ocean, Steponas Darius and Stasys Girėnas are carved on its surface.