Social Life in Lithuania

Social Life in Lithuania

Family comes before any other aspects of social life in Lithuania and, together with religion forms the basic structure of life here. The catholic religion helped to maintain he countries heritage during the Soviet years. It also accounts for the importance of observing name days (your own saint’s day) rather than birthdays, and many of their festivals are religion based.

Lithuania has many museums, and here you will find amber – often with insects or leaves trapped there or thousands of years. There is folk music and dance as well as nature reserves and a wealth of water sports – and they were ranked third in the world for basket ball recently.

If you are invited to a Lithuanian’s home, it’s great to bring flowers – but not white unless it’s a wedding; not chrysanthemums, unless it’s a funeral; and always bring an odd number of flowers. Wine or sweets are also welcome.

Vilnius has something for every taste in its busy mainstream nightlife; tip: leave your trainers at home and wear decent shoes to fit/get in. There do appear to be many dating sites – but be careful, stay safe. Gay or lesbian places will be hard to find.

National Holidays

  • January 1              – New years Day
  • February 16          – Restoration Day for Lithuania
  • March 11               – Restoration of Independence of Lithuania
  • Easter
  • May 1                     – International labour Day
  • June 24                 – St John’s Day (pagan celebration of Dew)
  • July 6                    – Statehood Day (Celebration of Lithuania’s first king’s coronation)
  • August 25             – Assumption Day
  • November 1         – All Saints’ Day
  • December 24       – Christmas Eve
  • December 25/26 – Christmas

Language

Lithuanian is the official language of Lithuania and is recognized as one of the official languages of the European Union. Lithuanian is a Baltic language, closely related to Latvian, although they are not mutually intelligible. It is written in a Latin alphabet.

English is spoken in the tourist areas and city centres, mostly by the younger generation. There are plenty of English teachers in the main cities. Older people are more likely to have Russian. In Lithuanian general education schools, one can attend one-year developmental classes. The great thing is that the children seem able to absorb languages easily, and unless your Lithuanian is very good they will soon be translating for you.

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