From Nida to the Hill of Crosses

Siauliai Travel Blog

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Today is been surrealistic! Everything has been quite weird! J Let me start explaining…. By the way, I am writing right now with the effects of wine and vodka! Too many things happened to us today! :)


I woke up this morning at 7.15 to go running! It is something I love to do when I am exploring a new place! I ran for almost 45 minutes all around the place. First I went to visit the waterfront and then the dunes! When I got to the room was almost 8 am and Emilio was getting up! We took a shower and then we went for breakfast! I have to warn you, DO NOT buy the Baltic Countries Lonely Planet! It is full of mistakes!!!! Unbelievable! They recommended us this shitty hotel, the worst I have been in years! And I must say today we found many beautiful places! The last thing you have to do is to stay in Hotel Jurate! Unless you are in an emergency, try anything else!  Breakfast was the worst thing ever, everything was really bad! So we had breakfast twice, we needed to try something better! Actually we ended up in Cilli Pica as they had Internet connection. From there we booked our hotel in Riga (we were supposed to arrive tonight, but we are still in Lithuania!). 


Around 10 am we headed to the well-known dunes in Nida (Parnidzio Kopa) with 42 meters! Actually they were not that impressive until we got lost in them! We walked for almost 40 minutes until we reached the Russia border! They have a wooden fence separating both countries! Emilio wanted to visit this country so he jumped the fence! Then when we were in the other side we started to be gun shooted! Dogs and some Russian soldiers came to us running and screaming ! Shit we were in trouble! Heheheh I am joking, but we were about to do it when a man started screaming at us! Damn! “Where are you going? Don’t you know that is Russia???” Woaw, he was angry and he told us about the sea patrol watching the border! Ufff… we were lucky we didn’t do it! This man was quite old and he presented himself as a border inspector! To tell you the truth it is good this man warned us! Then we reached the water and walked along the water until we got to  Nida!  By  the way, we took several illegal photos in the dunes! :)


By the time we went back it was lunchtime, so we checked some restaurants! This time we did not read anything recommended by Lonely Planet! Right in Taikos gatvé there is a restaurant named Kolibri ( attaching a review).

It was really good and very recommendable! Do no follow Lonely Planet recommendations but OURS! ;)


After lunch we decided to drive to Preila, walk around the place and have a coffee. The place was quite small so we ended up having a coffee and we kept on driving to Klaipeda! On the way Emilio had a big craving! J he wanted to go for a swim in the Baltic Sea, so we stopped there for some time!


The exit was free of charge; you pay to enter but not to exit!  Then we started to drive towards Palanga and then Siauliai! 20 minutes before getting to our destination I read in the Lonely Planet that Kryziu Kalnas was in Jurgaiciai, so we checked in our map and started heading to that direction. Shit! We started to go from one town to the next, but it was getting harder every time. From the highway we ended up in a road, and from there, to sand roads! Shit! We ended up getting lost in the middle of Lithuania! I tell you, that was deep Lithuania! We drove for more than 45 minutes and there were no signs of our final destination! The sunset was already happening and we were missing the best time to take photos! By the way, in Lithuania the best time to take photos during sunset in August is around 7.30pm! Amazing light!  We had no idea where we were as there were no signs whatsoever… Finally we got quite nervous and we decided to ask someone around… the only thing we could do is to ask a farmer!


“Hello! Do you know how to get to Jurgaiciai?” Woaw! He could not understand us and when we showed him our guide he could not understand what we were asking… he looked a real farmer! As we did not understand each other we kept driving! At some point we were quite lost! We had been driving for hours and we had no idea where we were located in the map! 10minutes later we saw three farmers together! That was our best option!


“hello, how can we get to Jurgaiciai?” and they replied we were right there!!!! Shit, but no signs of crosses (Kryziu Kalnas).

Then with our hands we tried to tell them that we were looking for the crosses’ hill and then they understood!!! Shit! You are not going to believe it! It is not in Jurgaiciai!!!! We almost fainted at that moment! These old guys told us how to get back to the national highway and get to our final destination!


We were planning to get to Kryziu Kalnas around 7.30 and then head to Riga, but we did not get to see Kryziu Kalnas until 9.30pm, so we decided to stay there for the night, see Kryziu Kalnas and then head to Riga in the morning!!!! In Lonely Planet recommended to hotels in Siauliai, but we did not trust it any longer! Right next to Kryziu Kalnas we found a nice wooden hotel! It was late, we were tired, so we just has three requirements:

1.     Internet connection ( I needed to talk to my girlfriend)

2.     Dinner (we were starving)

3.     Vacancies! (Rooms for the night)


Woaow, they had everything !!! The room and our dinner cost us 215 litas! Amazing or what? The place was very cozy, so we started having wines and dinner! This afternoon we have got quite stressed out looking for Kryziu Kalnas, so Emilio said we deserved a glass of wine.

We started with one from Argentina, but we kept on trying all countries listed in the menu! Shit, too many glasses!!!!   The waitresses were shocked! Guys from Spain trying all these different wines!


Next to us there was a private room and there a big celebration was being taken place! Suddenly they unlocked the room and we could see them celebrating and dancing! A few minutes later a nice guy with an Irish accent came to us asking where we were from! We started talking and next thing happening was a big vodka shot! Damn, we were getting too happy! J It seems to be that this guy is from Lithuania but he worked in Ireland But every year they would celebrate their anniversary in Lithuania!!! I guess that a bottle of vodka is always handy on these celebrations! The situation was funny as hell, there you saw us, two Spanish guys in a lost hotel in the middle of nowhere celebrating a wedding anniversary with a Lithuanian family!


And now you see me! Writing quite happy! J Well guys, I am falling asleep, I will continue tomorrow!!!!

Chokk says:
I found Hill of the Crosses totally amazing! It was very wrn and newly weds were standing in queue to have their wedding picture taken there!
Posted on: Sep 08, 2009
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photo by: mdanelaite