While this part of Eastern Europe is heavily influenced by the cultures of neighbouring Poland and Russia, Lithuania has plenty of its own unique features to offer. The dense forests that characterise the region of Aukstaitija in the north east and the Curonian Spit, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, both perfectly symbolise Lithuania’s natural beauty.
Vilnius, the capital, is full of monuments and other historical sites, some of which date back earlier than the Soviet era. The Old Town is the best place to visit for marvelling at the city’s architecture. For something a little different, a trip to the coastal resort of Palanga would be brilliant in summer, when thousands of Lithuanians head to the town.
What are the roads like in Lithuania?
The Lithuanian road network is in pretty good condition, partly owing to its connections with Latvia, Russia, Belarus and Poland. The motorways are the best roads in the country, but some of the minor routes vary in quality. Improvement works are constantly taking place, which can often lead to traffic problems. Routes between Latvia and Poland are easy enough to navigate.
What are the drivers like in Lithuania?
Drivers in Lithuania are known to be courteous, especially when giving way to other drivers at busy junctions on major routes. However, it’s important to be polite when letting other drivers go past. This will make everyone’s driving experience a little more pleasant and reduces the risk of road rage.
What are the best times to drive?
Weekdays are, as you might expect, a little more hectic than weekends for drivers. Driving on early weekday mornings in the cities like Vilnius, Kaunas and Klaipeda can take a while, as rush hour traffic can be pretty bad sometimes, but not all the time. Leaving it until 10am will make it easier for you to get around the urban areas.
What are the driving laws?
You must have a valid passport, driving licence and insurance documentation with you. Your car must have a GB sticker on the back, headlamp converters, a fire extinguisher, first aid kit and a warning triangle in the vehicle at all times. Winter tyres must be fitted when driving between November and March. It is compulsory to wear seatbelts in both front and rear seats of the vehicle. Children who measure less than 4ft 5in in height, or who are younger than 12, must be seated in an appropriate safety seat.
Some traffic lights in Lithuania have just red and green and have signals at junctions instructing you to turn left or right.
Children under 12 must not sit in the front passenger seat of your car without an appropriate seat restraint.
Your car must use dipped headlights during the day in Lithuania.