V. Kudirkos G. 45, Druskininkai, 66120, Lithuania
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Druskininkai Tourist Information Agency
I easy found tourist information office in Druskininkai as there were direction signs along my itinerary. I got there a lot of info on Druskininkai including very usuful brochure "Exploring Druskininkai. City Guide". Surely they were speaking English there.
Monday - Friday:
8.30 am - 12.15 pm
1.00 pm - 5.00 pm
Sat - Sun: closed.
Gardino gatve 3, Druskininkai, Lithuania.
Tel. +370 (313) 60800
Fax: +370 (313) 52984
For non-driving visitors there was another tourist information office located in downtown/centre: at Ciurlionio gatve 65; tel./fax: +370 (313) 51777. It was open Mon - Sun: 10.00 am - 6.45 pm.
First I tried to find VT pages on Druskininkai here. But there were only a few tips... in 2004. There was some, but not detailed, information in my travel books to Lithuania as well.
For more, follow the links below, please:
Druskininkai Tourism and Business Information Centre
Druskininkai official city page - pages in English, German, Lithuaniania, Polish and Russian,
The Museum of Druskininkai Town
Druskininkai. Museums of Lithuania.
Druskininkai in Wikipedia encyclopedia
Druskininkai Forest Company
For future generations (old history)
I think that history is the key to understand each culture by future generations. But it works even stronger in Lithuania and Druskininkai. I got to know a lot about the town history in the Museum of Druskininkai Town. So, let me share some my knowledge...
The name Druskininkai derives from Lithuanian word "druska" which means salt. "Druskininkas" (salt-man) is a person who worked to extract, sell and deliver the salt.
There was a defensive castle by Nemunas River in the 13th century. Springs full of mineral salts were already known there. Locals shortly discovered sanative power of the springs: ulcerosus legs recovered faster when bathed in them. Some smart people started "healing", esp. dynasty of folk doctors Surutis became famaous in the 18th century.
BEGINNING OF SPA
Local parliament members (from Hrodna, Belarus now) came to Druskininkai in 1789. They led Polish and Lithuanian (the two countries were united that time) king Stanislaus Augustus Poniatowski to the locality. After the visit, the king ordered his doctor to investigate sanative features of local mineral water. He announced Druskininkai to be a sanative locality by special decree in 1794. One year later Polish and Lithuanian king Poniatowski was transferred to Hrodna (Belarus now). He abdicated on Nov., 25 and common state of Poland amd Lithuania was finally divided by Germany, Austria and Russia. Druskininkai was annexed for over 100 years by Russian Empire.
Mineral and mud baths became more and more popular. At the end of 18th century Drusjininjai was well known and not only in the Russian Empire. A famous French Cubist Sculptor Jacques Lipchitz was born in Druskininkai in 1891
There were quite many visitors who spoke Russian language when I was in Druskininkai. There were leaflets in Russian at local tourist information cemtre and Russian menu in restaurants I visited.
Well, some (most?) locals spoke Russian as well, at least a little bit. Keep in mind that Lithuanians were obliged to learn Russian at schools till the Soviet occupation finished in 1991.
Polish mass media
I found and bought (1.20 Lt) another Polish newspaper issued in Lithuania, called "Nasz Czas" (Our Time) in Lietuvos Spauda kiosk in Druskininkai. The newspaper was issued weekly and contained a lot of very interesting information and articles on Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, Polish minority in these countries and regional politics.
Just a few topics:
70 - 90% of Lithuanian youths at age 15 - 24 want to immigrate
13 % of Lithuanians who were able to work immigrated during last 13 years
Eurostat informed that average salary per hour is € 19.09 in EU (25 countries). And it's 10.74 in Cypress, 4.48 in Poland, 3.02 in Estonia, 2.71 in Lithuania and 2.42 in Latvia.
WAR IN IRAQ
41% Lithuanian supports sending Lithuanian troops to Iraq, 33% is against and 27% has no opinion.
12,8% of total houshold income in "old" EU (15 countries)
19.9 % - Poland
22,9 % - Estonia
25,5 % - Latvia
30,7% - Lithuania ---> the worst result among 25 countries of EU.
Ok, enough... if you know Polish, read here, please.
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