(pop. 20.0 thousand) is the biggest and most universal seaside resort
of Lithuania. It is located 29 kilometers far from Klaipėda. The
Lithuanian seacoast is famous for its beaches of beautiful white sand and
dunes, which can be found nowhere else on the Baltic Sea coast. The
sandy coast extends for over 10 km and is backed
by a pine forest and dunes.
Originally a fishermen’s village, Palanga was first
mentioned in the written sources in the 12th century. The inhabitants were
engaged not only in fishery, they also gathered amber which would reach
the distant countries of Europe and Asia via the merchants’ routes.
the 19th century, Palanga started developing into a
health resort, which was a great merit of the dynasty of the Count Tiškevičius
(Tyszkiewicz), who moved to the town at that time. A park was laid out, a
new palace was built, a port was equipped, a natural therapy centre was
launched, a new church was constructed, and the sea pier was built then.
During the press prohibition period, the route of book spreaders was
crossing Palanga. The first national play in Lithuania, “Amerika
pirtyje” (America in the Bath) by A. Keturakis, was staged in this
resort in 1899.
resort boasts a large variety of pubs, cafes, restaurants, discotheques,
bars, night clubs, and casinos. Those who enjoy active holiday are offered
pedal boats, bicycles, horse-riding, tennis courts, pools, a complex of
baths, etc. A number of trails are intended for cycling or hiking. The
Palanga Regional Park, stretching somewhat southward in the direction of Klaipėda,
visitors by impressive scenes of wild and severe nature.
resort is home to a very interesting museum of Antanas Mončys, the
Lithuanian artist who created in Paris. Its small exposition shows
expressive works of big artistic power. The Savickas Gallery often hosts
memorable exhibitions of
modern artists. One can see the views of old Palanga in the Local
Museum of the town.
Palanga is the resort submerged in the shadows of trees, which is
fascinating at any season of the year. During a colder period, it is an
ideal place to hold conferences and seminars.
summer time, Palanga becomes a capital of entertainment and cultural
events. Then, it turns into a symbolical capital gathering people of
different professions and age, including artists and the academic
community. The town provides space for a summer residence of Lithuanian
government and president. Among holidaymakers are also tourists coming
from Germany, Poland, Sweden, Denmark, and Russia. People flock here to
both have a rest, bathe in the Sun, sea and dunes, and entertain
Such holidaymakers can expect a universal-type resort, meeting all-type
fancies. In early June, it organizes yearly an opening of summer season,
numerous concerts, festivals, entertainment and cultural events. In
mid-July it holds a traditional aviation festival. Since the year 1971,
the park of Tiskevicius Palace has been a venue of "Night
Serenada" concerts. In winter, it witnesses a mass bathing of
"seals", perhaps the biggest one in the world, in the Baltic
Sea. Moreover, all year round, Palanga hosts conferences and congresses.
This landscaped garden is one of the
prettiest, best-preserved, and best-kept parks in Lithuania's coastal
region. In 1987 Count Felix Tiskevicius founded this park around the
palace built the same year. The park was designed by the famous French
landscape architect and botanist Eduard Fransua Andre‚ (1840-1911), who
spent three summers in Palanga with his son Rene Eduard Andre (1867-1942)
supervising the park's construction. They were assisted by the Belgian
gardener Buyssen de Coulon.
Andre's talent and the natural and historical uniqueness of the park's
setting successfully blended to create a piece of art.
The scenic park offers a variety of views and moods. The palace is set
between a pond and the legendary hill of Birute - an ancient Lithuanian
sacred place - that offers a glorious view of the sea. The natural
foundation of the park, both in earlier times and now, are relicts of
ancient pine forests. Little paths and squares with beautiful flower
arrangements are laid out skillfully among the trees.
The contrast of scenery is emphasized by the palace's regular shape: the
north side opens onto a magnificent terrace and steps leading into the
park. Flowers and a fountain complete the effect. The south side of the
palace is surrounded by an oval rose garden that is connected to the
palace's terraces by stairs.
Experts guess that the park's founders planted about 500 different kinds
of trees and bushes. Trees were brought to Palanga from Berlin,
Karaliaucius and other European botanical gardens. Today - as before -
pine trees dominate the park. Firs and dark alders grow in the more humid
areas. About 250 imported and 370 native plant species are represented.
The park has survived two world wars and a number of natural disasters. It
has also been extended and restored. However, with the exception of a few
details, the park has kept the atmosphere created by Andre, as Florence
Andre Kappelin, the head of the E. Andre association, confirmed during her
visit to Palanga in 1996.
Today the park covers an area of approximately 100 ha. Trees cover 60 ha,
fields - 24.5 ha, flowers - 0.5 ha, flowing water - 1.16 ha. Beach and
sand dunes stretch for 1.5 km. Paved and unpaved paths cover 18 km. There
are 8 different buildings, 7 sculptures and a number of other
architectural structures. The park has plumbing and a decorative lighting
The Amber Museum is housed in the
neo-renaissance palace built by Count Felix Tiskevicius in 1897. The
palace was designed by the German architect Franz Schwechten and was
restored in 1957 according to plans by the architect Alfredas Brusokas.
The Amber Museum was opened August 3, 1963 as a branch of the Lithuanian
Museum of Fine Arts. Currently the museum includes 15 rooms with
expositions that cover about 750 sq.m. The collection includes about 28
000 items. The palace is connected to a chapel that houses moving
The chapel on Birute's hill
Built in 1869 by the architect K.
Majeris, the construction of this chapel was promoted by the Palanga
parish priest K. Steponavicius. The current chapel replaced a cross and a
wooden chapel in the honor of St. Jurgis. In even earlier pagan times our
ancestors used the hill as an observatory. Since 1976 stained-glass
windows, designed by the artist Liudas Pocius, decorate the chapel. The
Lurdas lies at the foot of the hill.
After the construction of the park was
finished, Count Tiskevicius' wife Antanina decided to build the Lurdas.
All the stones used are unprocessed and are held together by cement. A
statue of the Virgin Mary used to stand in a niche of the Lurdas. During
the revival of the Lithuanian nation, Vilius Orvydas donated a stone
sculpture of the Virgin Mary that stands in the Lurdas to this day.
This sculpture was created by the artist
Konstancija Petrikaite-Tiuliene and erected in 1965. It stands on a stone
at the foot of Birute's hill - the symbolic eternal resting place of
Princess Birute. The sculpture bears the inscription "For you,
"Rebeka" ("Woman Carrying
Water"), by the French sculptor Hubert Louis-Noel, originally stood
in the Vilkenas palace park (Silute region). The sculpture found its new
home around 1983 and was restored by the Pranas Gudynas restoration and
conservation center. A copy still stands in the Vilkenas park where the
original used to be.
The small terrace
This terrace was originally Count
Tiskevicius' garden: the south side was enclosed by glass and the north by
a wall. The garden also used to be fenced ittimes. Two old pedestals of
sculptures remain as well as remnants of. The terrace's appearance has
changed many an old fountainfound, it is difficult to recreate the terrace
in its original. Since no photographs of the original garden have been
"Egle, queen of the serpents"
This is one of the most popular sights
of the park and one of the prettiest and best-known sculptures in
Lithuania. Egle stands near the main entrance and was created by the
sculptor Robertas Antinis (the older) and the architect Alfredas
"Jesus giving a blessing"
This sculpture by Stasys Zirgulis stands
across from the Tiskevicius palace, on the botanical garden's large
terrace . It is a reproduction of an earlier statue that was probably
brought to the park from Paris at the turn of the century. The original
was destroyed after World War II by the Soviet rulers. The new statue was
designed according to old photographs and was blessed by the bishop of
Telsiai, Antanas Vaicius, on June 14, 1993.
Memorial in eternal remembrance of the
Jewish people killed in world war II
This memorial is located in the newer, southeast half of the park,
near a path that follows the dunes in the direction of Klaipeda. You will
find the following inscription in Hebrew and Lithuanian on a large stone
of pink granite: "Here in the dunes of the southern part of this
forest Nazi executioners and their local helpers brutally murdered 105
Jews in 1941. May this be a holy memorial to the innocent victims."
This memorial was erected around 1989 at the sight of mass executions.