Curonian Spit National Park


A spindling 98 km long strip of land locked in waters of the Baltic sea from West and the Curonian Lagoon form East is a beautiful creation of nature and people endeavor. The present landscape of the Curonian Spit was mostly formed by people trying to put a bridle on winds and sand. That`s why the Curonian Spit was admitted to be a National Park, what is more,it is an exceptional case of human and nature conjunction that was included into UNESCO World Heritage List.

According to a legend, the Curonian Spit was poured of sand by giantess Neringa playing in the seaside. Some people consider Neringa to be an equivalent to a female version of a Greek valiant Heracles. Historically the Curronian Spit was formed 5000 years ago. According to archeologists the area used to be a major pagan center in 9-11th centuries.

In 1757 the entire villages were buried under moving dune sands because of disforest to satisfy rapidly growing timber needs . In coping with this trouble the Prussian government initiated the large-scale reforestation of the spit. Nowadays much of the Curonian Spit is covered by forests owing for these efforts. The tourism in the Curonian Spit flourished after the breakup of the Soviet Union. The Curonian Spit attracts visitors in its quietness, cleanliness, relaxing atmosphere and unique landscape containing the highest moving sand dunes in Europe (average height 35m, the highest 60m), admirable seashore and townships amazingly adjusted to natural surroundings.

Traveling the Curonian Spit can be not only relaxing, but entertaining as well. The spit contains of 9 settlements, 7 of which belong to Lithuania. The rest belong to Russia as in the spit there is a boundary between Lithuania and Russia. The largest town of the spit is Nida, each year attracting more than 50.000 tourists, mostly Lithuanians, Latvians, Russians and Germans. The resort offers various kinds of activities and places to visit. Almost the most famous is the Lithuanian Sea Museum, Aquarium and Dolphinarium where visitors are able to watch live dolphins, seals and sea-lions performances, that are loved not only by children but by grownups too because of their vitality, joy and sincerity. What is more, everybody are delighted by the huge variety of sea animals, fishes and plants exposed in many splashy aquariums. Tourists must also visit the spectacular 45 m height hill called The Hill of Witch where many unique folk sculptures of withes, devils and various unknown creatures of fantasy world are exposed. The exposition is really breathtaking as from the Hill of Witch a spectacular view of dukes, sea and forests opens. There are many more interesting places to visit in Smiltynė, Juodkrantė, Pervalka, Preila and Nida as well as lot of types of leisure time activities like boating, fishing, survey flights, excursions, bicycling or just having dinner outdoors.

The Curonian Spit is called the pearl of the Baltic sea. As soon as people visit it, they do not have to be persuaded that  it is an absolute true. Beautiful surroundings, variety of time spending and marvelous landscape of dukes, Baltic seaside and Curonian Lagoon compose an impression of admiring a real gemstone, that, according to UNESCO criteria “V”, is an “outstanding example of traditional human settlement, land-use and sea-use which is representative of a culture and human interaction with the environment”.

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