Utena

Utena is a center of Utena district which seizes territory of 1229 sq. km. More than 32000 citizens live there in Utena city while in all district there are approximately 47700 inhabitants. Utena is famous for its hosiery products, brewery and horse sports. Nowadays Utena is titled as a capital of Eastern Higher Lithuania. A golden horseshoe in its blazon symbolizes the luck and harmony of the city.

History

Utena is one of the oldest Lithuanian cities. It was first mentioned in a letter of the King of Lithuania Mindaugas in 1261. Then the wooden castle on the river Utenėlė shore was described. According to a legend, Utena castle was built by a duke Utenis. 1373 – 1375 Utena region was wasted in cold blood by the Teutonic Order . In  1433 Utena castle was destroyed and the city was moved to another location which was suitable for economical works better. I

n 1416 the Utena church was built and the city became a district. As soon as Utena got privilege of trade, city expanded a lot. In the 16th -17th century an alteration of the city was made. Utena was modified under plan of right-angled plan with a square market place in the center. A very bad influence for the city expansion the North war made. In 1700-1721 Utena was demolished by Swedes. It began regenerating only when the highway Peterburg – Warsaw was grounded. That was the first highway in Lithuania built in 1830-1836 which connected Kaunas and Zarasai. The city was capacitated to develop significantly then. In 1899 the narrow railway was stretched along the Utena region. In 1918 the first telephone station was established in local post office. In 1924 Utena got the ciy rights. Till nowadays the city climbed over its historical walls and occupied territory of lakes Dauniškis and Vyžuonaitis, reached the channel of Vyžuona river.

Nowadays

Utena nowadays is a city including many cultural, nature and historic monuments. Some of important heritage objects were destroyed during wars, but those survived all the hardships now are even more valuable as symbolize the unique ethnographic history of the region. In Utena there stands a marvelous Church of Christus Entering Heaven near the old cemetery, a brand new Utena Church of God Divine, a few orthodox churches. A cultural and social life is developed in local Culture center and in a Center of Children Social Support and Education. There are 2 post offices, a Museum of Regional Studies and a nice park attracting people every sunny day. In a Rašė hippodrome in Utena a trotter racing is organized every summer. The event attracts people from all over Lithuania as it is a unique and very exciting annual occasion. In Utena there also overlooks a remarkable Utena stone which distinguishes in its bowl formed by nature. The Utena stone is accredited to be an archeological monument. All in all, Utena district is full of places worth visiting scattered around its center like regional parks, reserves, mounds, folk art objects, beautiful old estates and many more. Beautiful natural surroundings including lakes, rivers, forests and mounds create a very harmonious atmosphere in the city so once came here everyone want to stay as long as it is possible.

Visit Utena and find there that happiness and luck symbolizing the city. Although Utena is not one of the biggest cities, it is a remarkable place in Lithuania. Utena rise clever, lucky and happy people like Bernard Lown, a Nobel prize winner. Be at least the lucky one to visit the city.