Vilnius is the capital of Lithuanian Republic. It_s the largest city in our country and it is political, scientific, cultural and industrial centre too. The central bodies of the republic power — parliament, called the Seimas, Government, various ministries, TV and Radio stations, editorial offices of republic newspapers, theatres, museums are located in Vilnius.
The first documentary reference to Vilnius dates back to 1323, when the Great Duke Gediminas proclaimed Vilnius the capital of Lithuanian state and invited foreign artists, scientists, builders to come live and work here. Vilnius has got a very beautiful Old Town, which reminds us the history of our native country.
In the centre of the Old Town, on the Castle hill, stands the Gediminas Tower, a part of an old castle built 6 centuries ago. There is a square in slope of the Castle Hill. It_s called the Cathedral square, because there is a cathedral in the centre of it. This cathedral, reconstructed in the end of the 18th century by the famous Lithuanian architect Stuoka-Gucevichius, is the most important catholic church in Lithuania.
Vilnius is a mixture of the main architectural styles: Baroque, Classicism, Renaissance and Gothic. The church of St. Anna is considered to be a Gothic masterpiece, the Gediminas castle is a representative of Gothic style too. Well-known representative of Baroque is the church of St. Peter and Paul. The Italian sculptors worked on the masterpieces of art of this church. There are thousands of sculptures in it. Classicism dominates in some Cathedral, University buildings. Vilnius University is very old, it was established in 1579.
There are many new districts built in the latest 30 years: Lazdynai, Baltupiai (shame of Vilnius), Karolinishkes, Fabijonishkes, Justinishkes. I don_t admire such “modern” houses of blocks, factories, standing in the centre of the city.
Despite this, I don_t want to criticise Vilnius more. It_s my native town and I couldn_t live in any other town.