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Soviet Stories from Vilnius

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Highlights
    What to Expect
    Exploring the Soviet past in Vilnius means diving into its quirks and absurdities, the funny and sad stories, and the harsh realities about life in ‘the best country in the world.’ On this Vilnius tour, you’ll learn about Stalin’s horrors, as well as the struggles, resistance, and drive for freedom that destroyed the Soviet empire.
    We’ll meet for our Vilnius walking tour at the Town Hall, then walk toward the Jewish quarter and visit the local market, where not many things have changed, except the prices. Here we will try a Lithuanian specialty: salted and smoked bacon and “black bread,” which helped people to survive through both good and bad times. Then we’ll walk toward the former railway workers’ union house a unique place that’s now converted into a nightclub and skating park, and decorated with modern art. You’ll learn why workers needed a palace and why some factories had no address, only a mailbox.
    We'll head to the Soviet block apartment district. We’ll talk about what life was like in those apartments and what it felt like to be a citizen during that era. What was it like to live in the "best country in the world"? We’ll discuss all the details and rituals of daily life, like what locals ate for breakfast, and find out why good friends were more important than money.  Next up on this Vilnius tour, it’s time to explore cuisine à la Soviet! Find out why kitchens in Soviet blocks were limited to nine square metres in size, and why canned green peas and mayonnaise were top products at that time. We’ll then pop into a Soviet-inspired restaurant to taste very special ‘delicacies’ from Soviet times. Don’t be afraid they’re actually surprisingly tasty! We’re talking about deep-fried pastry with minced meat and onion filling, which would only be prepared for special occasions. We’ll also try some Lithuanian soup, because Lithuanians can’t imagine lunch without it! And a glass of beer too, of course.
    We’ll then do as the locals do and hop aboard public transit to the wedding palace, where we’ll tell you all about wedding traditions from Soviet times. We’ll also walk to a trade unions’ palace, built on a cemetery, where there are other Soviet secrets to share. We’ll hear about the importance of connections and the meaning of a Soviet saying, “It is better to have 100 friends than 100 rubles.”
    From here, we’ll take in the sweeping view including spying the legendary TV tower and the most popular pub in Soviet Lithuania. It is said that beer flew through the pipes here directly from the brewery, and people could talk freely here, as it was too noisy for the KGB to spy on them.
    Our final stop will be where the Soviet era both started and ended: the former KGB headquarters, now a famous museum. It used to be said that one could see Siberia from there. Across the street, there used to be the biggest monument to Lenin in Lithuania and here you will find out what happened to him when the Soviet era ended.
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    Reviews (39)
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    All reviews kgb museum soviet era fantastic guide urban adventures own experiences walking tour personal touch booked this tour soviet times great insight lithuanian cuisine a lot of fun jelena knowledge influence enlightening impact
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    1 - 5 of 32 reviews
    Reviewed 3 weeks ago via mobile

    My son and I enjoyed the guided tour with Jelena. The tour allowed us to see parts of the city we wouldn’t have chosen on our own and enriched our experience in Vilnius.

    Date of experience: August 2019
    Thank John F
    Reviewed July 9, 2019

    We had a stimulating three hour tour of Vilnius’s Soviet sights with Anna, a lively and enthusiastic guide who shared meaningful details about her own family’s experiences in Soviet Europe while taking us to numerous places in Vilnius we never would have seen or learned...More

    Date of experience: July 2019
    Thank annewinebrenner56
    LT_VOYAGER, Tour guide at Vilnius Urban Adventures, responded to this reviewResponded July 18, 2019

    Dear Annewinebrenner56, great to hear from you and really happy you enjoyed the tour! It was a very good time we had together indeed. I greatly appreciate you guys sharing so much of your experience. Thank you very much and hope to see you again...More

    Reviewed June 28, 2019

    Tour guide Anna gave us a good sense of the period when Vilnius was part of the USSR: how various buildings were affected (churches, apartment buildings, streets), the impact on daily life or ordinary people and then how things changed when the Soviet Union broke...More

    Date of experience: June 2019
    Thank Jean_Ritok
    LT_VOYAGER, Tour guide at Vilnius Urban Adventures, responded to this reviewResponded July 1, 2019

    I really appreciate your review, Jean. Sounds like you had a good time and I'm glad you got so much out of the tour. Greetings from Vilnius. Anna

    Reviewed June 17, 2019

    This was great for pointing out the Soviet influence in things you wouldn't have otherwise noticed. These sights plus the enlightening stories, the genuine Soviet food and drink plus the fact that we were the only 2 people on the tour made it first rate....More

    Date of experience: May 2019
    Thank Chris H
    Reviewed June 2, 2019 via mobile

    Nice and interesting tour with a good guide, Gita. Also a simple and tasty lunch included. We will recommend this tour to other people who have interest in near past in Baltikum.More

    Thank dagh343
    LT_VOYAGER, Guide at Vilnius Urban Adventures, responded to this reviewResponded June 2, 2019

    Dear Dag, it was very cool to show you guys around and I was very happy to see you smile and laugh. Have you checked your rooms for bugs and microphones? Ha, only joke because we do not spy on tourists anymore ;) Hope you...More

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    Questions & Answers
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    setav2017
    July 26, 2018|
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    Response from MIKEndSUE | Reviewed this property |
    Hi, unfortunately I can't help with this question. Suggest contacting a local tour office in Vilinus.
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