Historic Parks for Peaceful Autumn Walks
As fall paints Lithuania‘s countryside with golden colours, cool days come to the summer-green of the parks surrounding old estates, they are a perfect destination for a walk with family or friends, to breathe the fresh air and escape our daily routine. We thank bernardinai.lt for allowing us to show this beautiful gallery of photos for a virtual visit of these historic sites. Text by Vilma Dečkutė Žukauskienė, translated by Ramūnė Jonaitis
The parks around ancient Lithuanian hill-forts and estates are lush with natural and cultural heritage. Here we see the old boulevards lined with lindens, carefully designed ponds and fountains, sculptures and other decorative elements that create a special atmosphere at these estates, each in its unique way. Estate parks were the artistic creations of talented designers, often well-known architects. Many of the properties have been damaged over time, during the war and the occupation, but once independence was reestablished, there has been a movement to renew and promote them once again. These luxurious oases, ready for visitors today, are the result of the efforts of many park workers and specialists.
Panemunė Castle park in the Jurbarkas region was begun in the 17th century, and reconstructed at the end of the 18th century. At that time, it was built with a series of ponds, a landscape of pavilions and flowerbeds and a menagerie of deer. In the first half of the 20th century with a Silesian Monastery on the premises, th gardens were cared for by the monks.
Today the 15 hectare (1 hectare = 2.5 acres) park invites visitors to walk its pathways and enjoy lookout points as well as local and exotic plant life, including ancient 100 to 400-year-old trees, such as oak, small-leaved linden, pine, maple, grey poplar, white willow, chestnut, ash and white-blooming robinia.
The Castle on Trakai Peninsula offers only fragments of the territory that was first established in the mid-19th century.
Park Pathways in Vilnius
Tuskulėnai Estate was once surrounded by gardens and reservoirs, as well as hunting grounds, established in the 19th century with gardenscapes and small architectural features. Today visitors may still walk around the estate and the adjoining Tuskulėnai Commemorative Park.
Markučiai Estate park was created in the 17th century, and renovated in the 19th century. The landscaped park has rest areas and lookouts, pathways and several ponds.
Tuskulėnai Estate Park, Markučiai Estate Park (Photos by Gytis Juodėnas)
Liubavas Estate near Vilnius is a unique environment, with a series of ponds surrounding historic buildings. Documents from the time of Žygimantas the Elder show the reconstruction of these ponds. Ancient trees still grow around the buildings, and the Žalesa River flows past the mill. This romantic estate fascinates many a visitor with its mysterious, peaceful beauty.