As the year draws to a close, Vilnius will be teeming with activities and visitors from near and far. Join them and enjoy the town in December – the month has a special place in the hearts of many because of its festive mood.
The Vilnius Christopher Festival will offer a wide variety of musical performances spanning the entire month of December. Check the website for details, get your tickets, and let the music transport you to somewhere special.
This truly is the event of the season. Vilnius doesn’t cut down trees in the forest; instead, it produces them using leftover branches and artificial constructions. The lights will start to sparkle on this year’s tree at 7 pm on 1 December after a free concert at Cathedral Square, where the town will gather to celebrate.
Comic book fans unite! The Litexpo Convention Centre will host the Baltics’ largest comic con on 2-3 December. With Eugene Simon and Ian Beattie from Game of Thrones, Josh Herdman from Harry Potter and many more, photo ops will be plentiful. Naturally, no such event is complete without a cosplay competition and if you register to take part, you’ll get 50% off your ticket.
In December, Christmas markets will pop-up at various times all around town. First, there’s the Litexpo Christmas Market on 9 December. The Design Square will be open in the centrally located Vinco Kudirkos Square through 12-17 December. Loftas will host its Uptown Market on 21-23 December. And the Pop-Up Market at Kablys is another one to keep an eye on, with dates to be announced.
The church, located in the centre of town, has been converted to a concert venue, with much of the original interior intact. Attending a concert here is a one of a kind Vilnius experience. This December, the programme of events includes five performances ranging from bossa nova to Christmas tunes.
On 27 December, the orchestra will invite three local rock legends to join them in covering popular hits by Metallica, Queen, Nirvana and many other rock bands. But if rocking out isn’t your thing, choose 28 December to hear the orchestra team up with well-known local singers and cover the most beautiful film soundtracks.
The building housing the theatre, with its tall glass walls, is a real eye-catcher. In December, it’s abuzz with performances and the programme offers something for everyone. Kids will love Cinderella or The Nutcracker and for parents, there’s La Boheme, Don Quixote and La Traviata, among others.
One of the oldest churches in Vilnius has a rich history, Used as a warehouse under Soviet rule, it has now regained its true purpose. On the first day of Christmas, the church will hold services in the morning, at lunchtime and in the evening. Even though the mass is in Lithuanian, it’s an experience that will leave anyone feeling elated. Locals come here for the town’s only living nativity scene.
Heading out to a concert on New Year’s Eve is a true Vilnius tradition. Out of the many performances available in town that night, you can’t go wrong with choosing La Bayadère at the Lithuanian National Opera and Ballet Theatre, the New Ideas Chamber Orchestra at Vaidilos Theatre, or one of two performances by the Lithuanian State Symphony Orchestra.
Cathedral Square is the place to be on Christmas Eve. Every year, as the clock strikes twelve, the town’s firework display is launched from Gediminas’ Hill and large crowds of locals come out to take in the festive mood before pouring into bars and restaurants around town.