Aukstadvaris Things to Do
Palace of Malevski
Palace of Malevski family looks a bit outside the central area of Aukstadvaris. You need to walk the main road to Prienai side till you see a park in the left side. Palace was built in 1837, in classicism style. The park, now bit neglect, is planned by motives of famous park engineer E. Andre.
It is a private place, but owners allow walking around. According to some information I read, they could allow having a look inside as well.
Church of Christ
Wooden church of Christ was built in 1910 – 1915. It stands just a bit out of Vilnius – Prienai road, at left side. Architect of the church was Filipovic – Bubovik. The construction was supervised by that time the owner of Aukstadvaris palace – Bronislav Malevski.
In my opinion, despite its simplicity, it is one of the most beautiful Lithuanian wooden churches for me.
Dominical church and monastery complex
The Dominican brick church and monastery was built here in 1629 – 1635. Monastery also was used as a primary school here. Later, at period of Russian empire annexing, 1832, this religical spot was closed, changed to military barracks. Church from 1843 was used for Orthodox religion instead of Catholic.
At the moment place is bit neglect, houses girls’ school. Here is no religical service anymore; Aukstadvaris has the other, newer, church.
Daytrip by car was taken partly using book of A. Semaska “Kelionės iš Vilniaus” (trips from Vilnius). At this trip several small towns were visited. The route was Vilnius – Vievis – Semeliskes – Aukstadvaris – Birstonas – Ziezmariai – Vilnius. It could be, of course, possible by bus too, but could take much more time. The length of route was about 220 kilometers.
Aukstadvaris Off The Beaten Path
Small town of Semeliskes is located in the middle way of road Vievis – Aukstadvaris. Actually the location ir very beautiful – some lakes are around, the town is crossed by Streva river.
The beginning of history of Semeliskes is unusual. The place is known from 13th century. It is predicted that Grand Duke of Lithuanian Duchy Traidenis gave land here for Prussians and Western Lithuanians to live, as they were refugees of intensive war action in Western part of Lithuania. At that time crusaders tried to “christianise” Lithuania, occupying lands. Later, in 1501, first church was built here, place is religic spot as well – from year of 1772 people gather here for feast of St. Rock.
Place is about 16 kilometers away.
For further information watch my Semeliskes VirtualTourist page.
Mound, called "Napoleon cap"
Not so long road away from Aukstadvaris, to Prienai side, is the mound of Lepelioniai, or, in other, stranger, words - Napoleon cap. Despite the name of “mound” – it is believed to be not the place, where defensive structure stood. Possible it is just a small hill with plain top.
Mound looks like a military cap. Why Napoleon? Story tells, at the beginning of 19th century, when Napoleon Bonaparte chosen Lithuania to take his army to Russian Empire, he overlooked the surroundings from this hill. The view is nice one, recommended to see.
"Pit of evil"
Pit of evil is a naturally formed pit in the forest near Aukstadvaris, about 3-4 kilometres from it. The pit, is believed, was formed in the period of ice-age, when one big ice peace got stranded here and melted. Another version is associated with meteorite crater, but this one is less believed.
There are some legends about appearance of the pit. One of them (most interesting for me) tells that there was a church located, there priest had sin-relations with married women. The place was boomed from the sky and church with its sinners sinked, making a pit. Story tells that local people still hear the voices of sinken church’s bells.