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Plan Ahead: the 36 Most Interesting Events in Vilnius in 2019

This year can be your most exciting yet if you come to Vilnius, especially since there are 36 notable events to choose from. Anything from very traditional to more artsy out-of-the-box event: music or cinema, the diversity of art and culture, the latest trends, and a special atmosphere full of ideas. Ready? And action!

Christopher Festival

27 June – 28 August

Various locations

www.kristupofestivalis.lt

Welcome to the 25th Christopher Festival. What to expect? Well, the festival’s motto is all genres are good except the boring ones. You’ll have a chance to hear more than the masterpieces of classical music, including jazz, experimental projects, and traditional works that are sure to find their way into the hearts of the audience. Let the music take you to the church vaults, under the summer sky, or into the Lithuania’s lovely  nature.

Bicycle Marathon Velomaratonas

18 August

Start at the Parliament of the Republic of Lithuania

www.velomaratonas.lt

It’s time to get on your bike and challenge your strength and endurance! Whether it’s the only ride this year or you’re a pro cyclist, the traditional Velomaratonas invites you to go down the streets of the Old Town. Enjoy time with the whole family – the race for kids may be a source of inspiration for more serious cycling later on in life.

St. Bartholomew Fair

23-24 August

Various locations

Jump into a time machine and travel to the Middle Ages with people dressed in Renaissance clothes on the streets of Vilnius, old music and crafts. Watch the craftspeople parade and the craft-making demonstrations, or try your hand at making some of your own crafts – make a clay pot, spin that spin wheel or make a coin to bring home as a souvenir.

Film Festival Cinema Under The Stars

5 August – 6 September

Palace of the Grand Dukes of Lithuania

www.kinopasaka.lt

There are many ways to watch films, but summer offers the most enjoyable way. Cheers to all the romantics. Sit in a chair with a cup of coffee, bring your cosiest blanket, and watch some Lithuanian movies, documentaries and some of the classics under the stars.

Vilnius City Fiesta

30 August – 1 September

Various locations

www.vilniusfestivals.lt

Celebrate together with Vilnius at the biggest festival filled with music, good food, culture and a great atmosphere. Greet the autumn season with live concerts, exceptional shows, and a fair in the heart of the city, on Gediminas Avenue. Get ready for some action, adventures, and creative ideas.

International Contemporary Performing Arts Festival New Circus Weekend

2-8 September

Arts Printing House
www.menuspaustuve.lt

Escape everyday life and jump into a world of fantasies, illusions, and almost limitless possibilities. The circus can be completely different; see for yourself. The performances of troupes from all over the world will surprise and impress you. Do you want to learn the art? Join the motion workshops.

Music and Arts Festival Loftas Fest

13-14 September

Art Factory Loftas

www.menufabrikas.lt

The summer is over, but the festivals continue. Take part in the only urban music and arts festival in the Baltics. High-quality music stages, art performances, night-time movies, open-air exhibitions – be at the centre of an art adventure taking place in former factories. Enjoy street food, look for something nice from the young Lithuanian designers or get some vinyls at the night market.

Japan’s Culture Festival NowJapan

10-15 September

Lithuanian Exhibition And Congress Centre LITEXPO

www.nowjapan.lt

What do you know about Japan? Get to know the Land of the Rising Sun without leaving Vilnius. Get ready cause there’s so much to see: plenty of shows, workshops, presentations, exhibitions, films and animation sessions, competitions, and of course, food. Japan is also famous for technology, so see all the innovations, try computer games and dive into virtual reality.

International Early Music Festival Banchetto Musicale

8 September – 27 September

www.bmfestival.lt

It’s not often that you get to hear the most beautiful pieces of early music in Vilnius. It’s not only the famous classics. The festival dedicated to medieval, Renaissance and Baroque music, dance and theatre celebrates the anniversary dates of famous composers, prepares theatrical programmes and even plans special performances.

Danske Bank Vilnius Marathon

8 September

Start at the Vilnius Cathedral

www.vilniausmaratonas.lt

Are you ready for the 42 km challenge? If the number frightens you, choose a half-marathon or 10 km, run 5 km with your family, or introduce the kids to the joy of running by starting with the 200-metre run. Everyone can run, so get your running shoes and explore Vilnius Old Town with friendly, like-minded people.

Nations Fair

Date: TBD

Various locations

www.tautumuge.lt

You will definitely smell the aromas of the fair first – various stands offering national food in the streets of Vilnius will lure you from afar. Get acquainted with national customs and traditions, from famous German sausages, pastries made by Georgians and Karaims, and other delicacies that will definitely tempt you to taste everything. But this is not just a foodie paradise; the most active masters of arts and crafts from the national communities living in Lithuania will present their arts, songs, and dances for the audience.

The Festival of Electronic Sound Practices Ahead

Date: TBD

Various locations

www.aheadfestival.lt

Expect new experiences. This festival is more than just music – take part in creative workshops, discuss, and discover the sounds of electronics. Talk to the artists and find out what it means to create and be part of electronic sound practices.

International Jazz Festival Vilnius Jazz

16 October – 20 October

Various locations

www.vilniusjazz.lt

Hear the wave of contemporary jazz and improvisational music flood the city. This is a rare opportunity to see some renowned foreign jazz performers in Lithuania, discover musical innovations, hear the rising stars and get a taste of jazz avant-garde. Dive into the free spirit of the festival and choose from a multi-media programme that will pique your curiosity.

Contemporary Music Festival Gaida

4 October – 19 October

Various locations

www.vilniusfestivals.lt

What is contemporary music? It’s definitely not just what you hear on the radio. Listen for a programme open to all traditions and cultures. Serious symphonic music and alternative works, electronic or experimental music, and an array of multimedia projects will take over the main concert halls of Vilnius.

Game Culture Festival Game On

16-17 November

Lithuanian Exhibition And Congress Centre LITEXPO

www.gameon.lt

Life is a game! Don’t stop playing no matter how old you are. You will find everything your inner child desires: from innovative solutions and top gaming equipment, to virtual reality and the latest indie games. If you want to go all out, take part in the cosplay contest, or join a conference for game developers.

Lithuanian Gastronomy Week

4-10 November

Various locations

Facebook: Lietuvos gastronomijos savaitė

Bon appétit! Take a gourmet tour of Vilnius’ restaurants and discover unexpected flavours. Special menus, tasting dinners and special edible works of art by the best chefs in the city will delight and surprise you. You can also help select the Star of Gastronomy Week – eat and vote for the best restaurants.

European Film Forum Scanorama

7-24 November

Forum Cinemas

www.scanorama.lt

It’s a film feast so large that choosing from the wide-ranging festival programme can be a difficult task. Movie classics, the latest trends, and the most uncomfortable truths are all here. Watch European cinema and see the best and most acclaimed films. There’s just one question – how to see it all?

International Jazz Festival Vilnius mama jazz

13 – 17 November

www.vilniusmamajazz.lt

Let’s talk jazz! This festival is your guide to the contemporary world of jazz. Check out the special jazz exhibitions, take part in conversations with performers, and, of course, listen to lots of jazz. The festival invites both world-renowned and Lithuanian jazz musicians. Enjoy the special art programme and discover new talent. Jazz up your life a little.

Vilnius Beer Festival VAF

29-30 November

Art Factory Loftas

www.vafest.lt

What’s the biggest challenge for a true beer fan? 200 different beers all in one place! Visit the largest independent craft beer festival in Lithuania. Taste it and learn to pair it with food. Discover new flavours and surprise your taste buds: old recipes go well with experiments. Fancy some whiskey barrel-aged beer or flavoured with exotic fruit? You’ve got it all here!

Christmas in the Capital

1 December – 6 January

Various locations

What can be more beautiful than a Christmas fairy tale along the narrow streets of Vilnius Old Town? Enjoy the festive atmosphere and magical mood all month long. See one of the most impressive Christmas trees in Europe, get your gingerbread at a Christmas fair, enjoy the festive concerts, or ride everyone’s favourite Christmas train. There’s fun everywhere you look. Check out the free events, too and create the most beautiful family memories.

More events here.

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St. Kasimir’s Fair (Kaziuko mugė)

1-3 March

Various locations

www.kaziukomuge.lt

Celebrate spring! This 400-year-old tradition promises to wake the city up after the sleepy winter. Get your Easter palm bouquet, eat special gingerbread, look at the wicker crafts, and watch a traditional shows. This year, the fair is adding a modern twist – there will be an ice skating rink at Lukiškės Square with various contests and activities.

Robotics Festival Robotiada

23 March

Lithuanian Exhibition And Congress Centre LITEXPO

www.robotiada.lt

Immerse yourself in the future and explore the world of robots: humanoids, industrial, educational, and recreational robots will show you what they are capable of. The big celebration of inventors is waiting for both small robot fans and serious tech geeks. Don’t miss the creative workshops, robotic battles and educational lessons.

Vilnius International Film Festival Kino pavasaris

21 March – 4 April

Forum cinemas

www.kinopavasaris.lt

Visit the biggest and most important film event in Lithuania. Be the first to see the premieres, attend meetings with filmmakers, and watch the most exciting movies. The programme is divided into five parts and is easy to follow: Discovery of the Year, Festival Challenges, Masters, Critics’ Choice and Competition of European Debuts.

Electronic Music Festival Jauna muzika

23 April – 28 April

Various locations

Listen to how technology and music can harmonise. This festival introduces innovations and ideas from various technological channels. Listen to the most exciting works by young artists and hear the electro-acoustic premiere. Don’t miss a special evening programme featuring alternative electronic music performers, experimental music makers and DJs.

International Contemporary Dance Festival New Baltic Dance

2-12 May

Various locations

www.newbalticdance.lt

Stay in the loop of national and global dance trends. You’re in for a bunch of surprising performances and experiments by amateur dancers, as well as renowned works of more established dance artists. The festival is a great opportunity to explore the limits of the human body, the hottest dance trends, and unexpected ideas.

Design Week

6-12 May

Various locations

www.dizainosavaite.lt

Keep an eye out for ink blue – it’s the colour of the Design Week, where original ideas and professional solutions go hand-in-hand with functionality and useful information. Take part in creative workshops, visit design exhibitions, participate in the conference, and get acquainted with the work of Lithuanian designers. This year’s theme explores progress and highlights recent achievements and innovations.

 

Europe Day

10-12 May

Various locations

www.europosdiena.lt

Thousands of people across the European Union celebrate this day; so let’s celebrate together. It is a great opportunity to get to know the cultural and culinary heritages of various European countries and see out how much you know about your neighbours. Concerts, discussions, and creative workshops are a great reminder of how and why the idea of a united Europe was born.

Street Music Day

18 May

Various locations

www.gmd.lt

Save the date! Music will flow through the streets of Vilnius Old Town on the third Saturday of May. Check out the talents of professional musicians, amateurs and those dreaming about the big stage. No matter what kind of music you like, you will certainly hear some samples of it. And don’t forget to grab your drum – Drum2gether’s percussion and improvisation parade is open for everyone to join.

International Folk Festival Skamba skamba kankliai

21-26 May

Various locations

www.ssk.lt

Initiated in 1973, Lithuania’s oldest folklore festival lets you take a peak at some of the country’s most cherished traditions. Listen to the Lithuanian songs known as sutartinės, which are on the UNESCO Intangible Heritage List, take part in the night festivities, or sign up for a workshop. The festival is dedicated to European folklore, so you will also get to take in some authentic folk performances from various other countries.

Vilnius Festival

3 June – 21 June 

Various locations

www.vilniusfestivals.lt

A true dessert for classical music fans – listen to famous Lithuanian and foreign performers boldly interpreting symphonic works and chamber music. Be the first to hear the premiere of contemporary Lithuanian composers as well as the original works created specially for the festival. Expect Renaissance and Baroque pieces, legendary jazz soloists, recitals of Lithuanian performers, and a few surprises along the way.

International Contemporary Art Fair ArtVilnius

30 May – 2 June

Lithuanian Exhibition And Congress Centre LITEXPO

www.artvilnius.com

Here’s your chance to get acquainted with the works of contemporary Lithuanian and foreign artists. The 10th International Contemporary Art Fair promises special surprises, installations and performances. Don’t just look, take part in creative workshops, and talk to the artists in person to find out what inspires them. Over 20,000 people visit about 60 art galleries from 15 countries in three days. Who will be your favourite?

The Conference of Technology and Innovation Login

June 6-7

Lithuanian Exhibition And Congress Centre LITEXPO

www.login.lt

Learn all about the latest marketing, technology innovations and future trends at the biggest tech conference in the Baltics. Listen in as Lithuanian and foreign experts discuss the changes and challenges the future brings. This year, the event will also focus on the increasingly topical issue of sustainability.

Culture Night

14 June

Various locations

www.kulturosnaktis.lt

Art will invade the streets, galleries and even some unexpected spaces in Vilnius once the sun sets. Will you be able to see more than 150 music, dance, theatre, cinema, photography, modern installations, and many other projects in one night? Visit cultural events for free and discover unconventional solutions, experiments, and new creative spaces.

Running Event We Run Vilnius

2 June

Start at Cathedral Square

www.werunvilnius.lt

Run, Forest, Run at the largest spring running event in Vilnius! Can you catch up with professional athletes, compete with amateurs or outrun the kids at the 5, 10 and 21 km routes? Enjoy the wonderful Old Town and the friendly atmosphere. The start and finish are at the Vilnius Cathedral, where you can join more than 10,000 participants and run together.

Street Theatre Festival SPOT

10-14 July

Various locations

www.menuspaustuve.lt

Become the centre of the free street theatre festival. Explore urban spaces and watch a series of performances and installations in the streets and squares of the city. Choreographed performances, concerts and contemporary theatre performances will introduce you to a different side of Vilnius Old Town.

Vilnius Burger Fest

25 July

Courtyard of the Lithuanian Theatre, Music, and Cinema Museum

Facebook: Vilnius Burger Fest

You will definitely smell this festival from far, far away. The aroma of the coals and grilled meat will lure you to the yard where the burger pros will fight for your attention and surprise you with inventive gourmet combinations. Attention, burger lovers: there are some hamburgers that can only be found at this fest. Fresh and local produce is used in the preparation of hamburgers, as the festival believes in the slow food philosophy, the principles of environmentally friendly food, and ethical behaviour.