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TOP 10 Cycling Routes in Lithuania

2017 April 12
This year, the world celebrates the 200th anniversary since the German Baron Karl von Drais invented the velocipede with wooden wheels, but without pedals, which was made to go forward by pushing one's feet against the ground. The Department of Tourism shares the information of Tourist Information Centres about the most attractive cycling opportunities throughout the country.
  1. The highest cycling bridge in the capital of Dzūkija. Cycling is also possible at a height of almost 40 metres. The construction of the White Rose Bridge for pedestrians and cyclists was completed in Alytus. The bridge is 240.5 m long and 38.1 m high. It is the highest bridge for pedestrians and cyclists in Lithuania; it was included in the list of Lithuanian records. The new bridge, which was built at the location of the old railway bridge of the 19th century, connects the banks of Nemunas and the cycling routes on both sides of the river. The panorama of Alytus may be viewed from the bridge, which has already become one of the most visited locations in the city.
  2. The old railroad. Another exceptional educational historical cycling route is called “Olita-Orany” from Alytus to Varėna and follows the former 19th century railway bed Alytus – Poteronys – Pavartėnai – Bukaučiškės – Artilerija – Varėna. The route is recommended for people interested in history and for fans of adventure travel. The route is approximately 60 km long. It is interesting because it allows one to feel like a first-class traveller of the Saint Petersburg - Warsaw railroad, to admire beautiful landscapes, to see over a dozen of old railroad structures, maybe even to go into the surviving tunnels.
  3. Around the lake, to see the imp in the swamp. In a different region of Lithuania, in Žemaitija National Park, Plungė district, the Šeirė trail (4.1 km long) located near Lake Plateliai is also suitable for cyclists. On this trail, travellers will see the swamp of Gaudupis and the wooden imp of Piktežeris. By the way, people say that the ghosts of crusaders who drowned in Piktežeris haunt this place. By following the circular 24 km cycling trail, it is possible to visit Plateliai and associated tourist attractions and locations, the Cold War exposition, the village of Beržoras, the source of the river Babrungas, the Plokštinė Nature Reserve, and Rūdaičiai recreational areas in Paplatelė and Paežerė.
  4. Lithuanian Switzerland: the short and the long Gražutė trails. One of the most picturesque cycling trails in Lithuania are located in Gražutė Regional Park: the longer trail (45 km long) and the shorter trail (37 km long) (Zarasai district). The longer and the shorter cycling trails of Gražutė were recognised by the State Department of Tourism as “The Most Successful Tourism Project of 2008”. The shorter Gražutė cycling trail, which was renovated last year, leads to the Gražutė grove, mounds, and an organic beekeeping farm. The cycling trails have three rest areas (they are intended for short periods of rest without lighting a bonfire or spending the night), two holiday camps (here, fires are allowed at bonfire sites), and three camping sites (where spending the night in tents is allowed, as is lighting bonfires at bonfire sites).
  5. The trail of Vytautas the Great. If one takes their bicycle to Trakai by car, bus, or train, several directions become available from the centre of Trakai: Varnikai (10 km), Užutrakis (18 km long), or Senieji Trakai (14 km long). The latter trail is called the trail of Vytautas the Great because it leads to the birthplace of Vytautas, while in 2000, the 570th anniversary of the death of the Grand Duke, nine wooden statues were put next to the trail to memorialise the most important stages in the life of Vytautas.
  6. The banks of Nemunas. The Tourism and Business Information Centre in Jurbarkas has prepared four thematic routes along cycling trails. For example, after choosing the route “On the Steep Slopes of Nemunas”, one rides a bicycle along the 7 km cycling trail on a bank of Nemunas, while the “Karšuva Forest” trail follows winding forest paths.
  7. The biggest Neris loop. The management of Neris Regional Park invites everyone to the tourism cycling trail on the left bank of Neris. This 23 km long trail follows winding forest paths along the biggest Neris loop of Velniakampis. There are many different objects of natural and cultural heritage along the trail: “Enchanted Wedding” stones in Neris, the mysterious conglomerate rock on the bank. Near Kragžliai tumuli, there is a pine called the “Witch’s Broom”, while the “Witches’ Circle” is located several kilometres away. Impressive panoramas may be seen from observation towers near Ausiutiškės or Paneriai. Clear Pinykla mythological spring water will refresh those who are thirsty. According to legends, it relieves eye pain and restores the beauty of youth if it is used for washing one’s face. To rest, it is possible to stay in one of the six regularly maintained holiday camps or at the large camping site in Bražuolė. It is also possible to spend the night there. The most convenient way to reach this trail is by transporting one’s bicycle by train and getting off at Lazdėnai stop (the trains depart from Vilnius and Kaunas).
  8. Cormorants. Many local as well as foreign tourists like and return to the Seaside cycling trail; however, only as late as last year a new 2 km Juodkrantė path for pedestrians and cyclists was opened in the Curonian Spit National Park. By riding their bicycles along this path, people may reach the Avinkalnis Horn and enjoy beautiful landscapes and visit the cormorants’ nesting place in Juodkrantė (by the way, April is the peak of egg incubation) as well as other places that are worth visiting.
  9. The longest cycling trail in Kaunas. The cycling trail that was opened last year connects the city centre to Kaunas district and follows a picturesque route, which allows people who live in Kaunas to enjoy the most beautiful natural and cultural treasures in the city and the district as well as the banks of Nemunas.
  10. Between two bodies of water. The Seaside cycling trail is probably the most popular and well-known among foreign and local cyclists. Cycling trails that are more than 200 km long wend their way from the centre of Klaipėda in as many as three directions to reach the most beautiful locations of the coastal areas of Lithuania. One trail is in the Curonian Spit, another leads to the north in the direction of Latvia, the third goes to the Rusnė Island. These routes are unique in their beauty; they allow seeing almost the entire coastal area of Lithuania.
More information on cycling trails and routes is available at Tourist Information centres, on their websites, and on the Lithuanian tourism website at Lithuania.travel.
 
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