Lithuania

What is the Lithuania? OK, the name you said perhaps vaguely something, but we must admit that it is part of the countries of Europe that we yet know evil.

Where is the Lithuania?

Its flag:

Lithuania

General data

Area: 65 303 km². The Lithuania is the largest and most populous of the three Baltic countries.
Capital: Vilnius.
Population: 3 505 738 inhabitants (estimated 2014), urbanized to 67%. A million Lithuanians Living abroad.
Density: 53.7 inhabitants/km2.
Life expectancy: 76 years (10 years of gap between men and women!).
Currency: the euro (since January 1, 2015).
Language: Lithuanian.
Political system: parliamentary democracy.
Lag: + 1 h.
Unesco World Heritage sites: the historic center of Vilnius (1994); the Curonian spit ; the archaeological site of Kernavė (2004); the Struve Geodetic Arc (2005).

History/General

The Lithuania is the largest of the three Baltic countries, and one that also has the more tormented history. After being a large Kingdomconstantly occupied by the Poland, the Germany, the Russia, the Lithuania was the first country to face the USSR, in 1989-1990, showing the way to independence.
Today, the Lithuania integrating the European Union dynamically, and has adopted the euro on January 1, 2015.

Geography

Lithuania: lands unknown to many lakes, thick forests and some magnificent national parks...

Its terrain is flat: the average national is 99 metres, with highlight is the Juozapine Hill, 294 m (not if culminating that it...). It also has a large number of rivers and some 2 830 (glacial) Lakes!
The coastline is very short: only on 99 km. But when front! There are sand dunes that sometimes exceed 60 m high. The area, called Amber Coast, won the Lithuanian nickname of "Sahara"! The Courland peninsula even was included in the world heritage of the Unesco in the year 2000.

The fertile lands of the Interior occupy almost half of the country. Well ordered fields, scarecrows, flowering meadows, wheels of straw, nests of storks on the pylons and chimneys... The Lithuania is a land to images fleurant good campaign of the past.

The country has borders with Belarus, Latvia, Poland, and Russia (with the isolated region of Russia, Kaliningrad).

Climate and weather

Lithuania, like its Baltic neighbours, knows the maritime influences on the coast of the Baltic Sea and a continental climate in the interior of terres.L'hiver begins in November. It is frequently snow for three or four months, and it can get very froid.Le spring begins mid-April, with snow melt: the campaign then covered with mud. It is followed by a summer full of light, where the mercury finally deigns to approach 20 ° C (30 ° C on some days in the capital).

Economy

The Lithuania has known, more than its two Baltic neighbours, a transition period difficult after the return to independence. This improves in 1995. But the 1998 Russian crisis does pass all indicators red. The Lithuania will be the last of the three Baltic countries to re - launch in 2001, and then will display up to 2008's exceptional growth rates in Europe.

This growth is linked has a exports diversifiedone skilled and competitive workforce, and a good level of private consumption. Budgetary consolidation measures are successful.

Today, the country develops brilliantly from projects in sectors of theenergy, of transport, of biotechnology, of theOptronicsand theagri-food.

-THEEuro Litas replaced on 1 January 2015, which itself had replaced the ruble in 1993. The entry of Lithuania into the euro area is of course an essential step in the country's economy.

Kitchen

All the Baltic countries, is undoubtedly in Lithuania that you eat the better. Peasant, sometimes rustic but generally tasty (and loaded in calories...), traditional cuisine inspired by Polish know-how, without neglecting a few Russian contributions.

A few examples:

Hors d'oeuvres : herring)silkė) marinated or smoked, if tender that it melts like silk in the mouth, is served with potatoes, chopped onions, sour cream. Smoked eel)rukytas unguris) is worth a visit, like the Red () caviarraudona ikra), salmon eggs to spread on a blini.

The entrees : Pork chops)kepsnys), grilled or breaded, calf)veršiena), rolls)zrazy), beef tongue)liežuvis), skewers to the (Caucasian)Šašlykas)… Not a meat is served without his dose of boiled potatoes or its grilled patties watered cream (sour)blynai).

Side vegetables, we often find ourselves with a plate of mushrooms marinated)marinuoti grybai), coleslaw)kopūstų) or beetroot)Burokas). The Šaltibarščiaiserved in summer, is a Borsch (soup) the beet cold. In winter, it is hot...

-Lithuanians, as poles, have even designed dishes only from potatoes : vėdarai (sausage),cepelinai (Zeppelins!) stuffed with meat, kugelis (potato cake)...

Desserts : To finish the meal, nothing better than one of these tasty little pancakes)blyneliai): banana, Apple, jam or gravy fruit coulis.

Drinks

The the (arbata): found the very good red fruit.
Lovers of hot chocolate : the chocolate is melted, not milk!

The beer : in Lithuania as in the other Baltic countries, everything revolves around beer, blonde)Šviesus alus) or sometimes Brown)tamsus alus).

Outdoor activities

The nature is very important in Lithuania, with many possibilities of sports and outdoor activities that vary depending on the season. In winterhiking to skiing, ice skating, and tobogganing are popular.In summerwalks in the forest, canoeing, especially in national parks excursions, bird watching, horseback riding, fishing and the bike rides are part of the most common sports activities.

Sports

On the Baltic Sea, the Lithuanians indulge in the joys of water sportssuch as jet skiing or diving.

On the other hand, the Basketball is the most popular sport in Lithuania, more than football.

Festivities and traditions

Number of feasts and Lithuanian traditions relate to the cycle of the seasons and to the work of the Earth.

-In the country, and especially in Žemaitija, children and adults dressed up as animals wander the streets of the villages for Tuesday fat (Užgavėnės). Midnight passed, an effigy of winter incarnate, called Morė, is burned into the collective joy.

Easter (Velykos): formerly It bathed in a river before dawn as a sign of purification before the spring cleaning. Lithuanians threw dust in the neighbouring country hoping it stays all year round... The Friday Holy, all stopped lest it seeps into the eyes of Christ! On Saturday, after the mass, are still painted eggs, and then the children seek them in the garden.

-The Saint John (Rasų or Joninės) marks the summer solstice. As in the other Baltic countries, urban dwellers are found in the campaign to maintain until dawn the large blaze in which symbolically burn their worries past.

Christmas is celebrated in a way quite similar to ours, with a big meal of Eve (Kucios)... no meat on the menu, but rich of twelve dishes as well as Apostles.

Language

Close to Latvian, Lithuanian descends like him an old Indo-European strain associated with sanskrit and hittitedead languages. Both say that Lithuanian resembles nothing of what is known.

Program: seven cases, five groups of declensions, diphthongs, so excessive as a bad accent pronunciation can change the meaning of a Word, and an alphabet of 32 letters - including 12 vowels - full of funny of occupants.

Thank you The backpacker !