About Lithuania


Lithuania is a little country wedged into a corner of the Baltic Sea. It is the largest of the Baltic States, but has the shortest Baltic coastline. Both its land mass (65,303 square kilometres) and population (3.4 million) are similar to those of Ireland. Actually, some of its population is shared with Ireland. For Americans, we can say that Lithuania has about as many people as Iowa in about the same space as West Virginia. For antipodeans, Lithuania is smaller than Tasmania but has a lot more heads in it - even if you do count all the Tasmanian ones twice.

Lithuania is a proud little country. It was one of the last countries to adopt Christianity, the first of the Soviet republics to declare its independence (on March 11, 1990) and the first country to sing "We Are The Winners of Eurovision" at the Eurovision Song Content in 2006 despite the fact that they hadn't won anything. Didn't even come close.Lithuania is a member of the European Union and NATO (since April 2, 2004).

It is a flat place, with lots of lakes and rivers. It will be one of the first countries to disappear when all the world's ice melts. There are no nasty snakes or crocodiles or grizzly bears or things that want to kill you. But, the world's most deadly venomous creature-the honey bee-does take pride of place in Lithuania: it is worshiped, and people make beer from its vomit.There are lots of forests and dainty little villages in Lithuania - the people have a strong sense of connection with nature, although there's not much sense of this in the large cities of Vilnius, Kaunas and Klaipeda.Lithuanians are very good at playing basketball.

The Lithuanian landscape has been smoothed by glaciers. The highest areas are the moraines in the western uplands and eastern highlands, none of which are higher than 300 metres (1,000 ft) above sea level, with the maximum elevation being Aukštojas Hill at 294 metres (964 ft). The terrain features numerous lakes, Lake Vištytis for example, and wetlands; a mixed forest zone covers nearly 33% of the country. The climate lies between maritime and continental, with wet, moderate winters and summers. According to one geographical computation method, Lithuania's capital, Vilnius, lies only a few kilometres south of the geographic centre of Europe. Lithuania consists of the following historical and cultural regions: Aukštaitija, Žemaitija, Dzūkija, Suvalkija.

Since 2004 Lithuania is a member state of the European Union and part of its single market.Lithuania has a flat tax rates rather than a progressive scheme. Lithuanian income levels are lower than in the older EU Member States, with per capita GDP in 2007 at 60% of the EU average. Lower wages have been a factor that in 2004 fueled emigration to wealthier EU countries, something that has been made legally possible as a result of accession to the European Union. In 2006, personal income tax was reduced to 27% and a reduction to 24% was made in October 2007. Income tax reduction and 19.1% annual wage growth is starting to make an impact with some emigrants gradually beginning to come back. The latest official data show emigration in early 2006 to be 30% lower than the previous year, with 3,483 people leaving in four months.

Corporate tax rate is one of the lowest in the European Union at 15%. The government offers special incentives for investments into the high-technology sectors and high value-added products.Lithuania has the highest rating of Baltic states in the Economist Intelligence Unit's guality of life index.  According to Invest in Lithuania, Lithuania has twice as many people with higher education than the EU-15 average and the proportion is the highest in the Baltic. Also, 90% of Lithuanians speak at least one foreign language and half of the population speaks two foreign languages, mostly Russian and English or Polish.

In 2005 79% of Lithuanians belonged to the Roman Catholics Church. The Church has been the majority denomination since the Christianisation of Lithuania in the end of fourteenth century and beginning of fifteenth century. In the 16th century, Protestantism started to spread from Western Europe. In the first half of 20th century Lutheran Protestant church had around 200,000 members, 9% of total population, although Lutheranism has declined since 1945. Various Protestant churches have established missions in Lithuania since 1990. 4.9% are Easten Orthodox (mainly among the Russian minority), 1.9% are Protestant  and 9.5% have no religion.The country also has minority communities of Judaism, Islam, Karaism which make up another 1.6% of the population.  

Kelionės į Koso salą Kelionės į Rodo salą Mokėk mažiau - keliauk dažniau! Rezervuok poilsį Lietuvoje ir užsienyje su nuolaida!