Gediminas' Tower (Lithuanian: Gedimino pilies bokštas) is the only remaining part of the Upper Castle in Vilnius, Lithuania.
The first fortifications were built of wood by Duke of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, Gediminas. Later the first brick castle
was completed in 1409 by Grand Duke Vytautas. Some remnants of the old castle have been restored, guided by archeological
It is possible to climb to the top of the hill on foot or by taking a funicular. The tower houses an exposition of archeologic
findings from the hill and the surrounding areas. It is also an excellent vantage point, from where the panorama of Vilnius'
Old Town can be admired.
Gediminas' Tower is an important state and historic symbol of the city of Vilnius and of Lithuania itself. It is depicted on
the national currency, the litas, and is mentioned in numerous Lithuanian patriotic poems and folk songs. The Flag of Lithuania
was re-hoisted atop the tower on October 7, 1988, during the independence movement that was finalized by the Act of the Re-
Establishment of the State of Lithuania on March 11, 1990. A reconstruction of the Royal Palace of Lithuania was completed
in 2009, and is located near the base of the hill upon which Gediminas' Tower stands.
Gediminas' Tower (Lithuanian: Gedimino pilies bokštas) is the only remaining part of the Upper Castl...
360 panoramic view of Vilnius taken from the remaining tower of the Upper Castle. My first panorma t...
Combined green grass spring of 2010 and snow spring of 2013 in Vilnius. Taken from gediminas Tower. S...
King Mindaugas monument was created to mark the 750 years anniversary of Mindaugas coronation. It was...
Lithuanian nacionalist procession on independence day 2012.03.11The description in English is too sho...
Europe is generally agreed to be the birthplace of western culture, including such legendary innovations as the democratic nation-state, football and tomato sauce.
The word Europe comes from the Greek goddess Europa, who was kidnapped by Zeus and plunked down on the island of Crete. Europa gradually changed from referring to mainland Greece until it extended finally to include Norway and Russia.
Don't be confused that Europe is called a continent without looking like an island, the way the other continents do. It's okay. The Ural mountains have steadily been there to divide Europe from Asia for the last 250 million years. Russia technically inhabits "Eurasia".
Europe is presently uniting into one political and economic zone with a common currency called the Euro. The European Union originated in 1993 and is now composed of 27 member states. Its headquarters is in Brussels, Belgium.
Do not confuse the EU with the Council of Europe, which has 47 member states and dates to 1949. These two bodies share the same flag, national anthem, and mission of integrating Europe. The headquarters of the Council are located in Strasbourg, France, and it is most famous for its European Court of Human Rights.
In spite of these two bodies, there is still no single Constitution or set of laws applying to all the countries of Europe. Debate rages over the role of the EU in regards to national sovereignty. As of January 2009, the Lisbon Treaty is the closest thing to a European Constitution, yet it has not been approved by all the EU states.
Text by Steve Smith.