12 Most Beautiful Lakes in Lithuania in 2023

Egle Gal

Updated

Lithuanian lakes, surrounded by large forests, as seen from the sky.

If there’s one thing Lithuania is known for, it’s definitely its lakes. Ranging from tiny ones, favored by local fishermen to enormous ones, whose size easily surpasses that of some local cities. We have Lithuania-shaped lakes, secluded gems and well-known luxurious beaches with all the amenities expected. From shallow lakes, averaging only 60 centimeters to those, that house plenty of secrets in their untouched depths of nearly 63 meters. There are lakes with castles – both above and below the water and lakes that are nature’s cradle and would make any birdwatcher’s day.

Lithuania has approximately 2,756 lakes occupying a total of 884,564.90 square kilometers (Lithuanian Cadastre of Lakes). This already staggering number inflates to nearly 6,000 when you start including all the lakes that are smaller than 0.005 square kilometers and/or are located on private properties (Vilnius University). With so many to choose from, picking the perfect one for your individual desires is by no means an easy task. Thankfully, we have visited the majority of the best-known ones and, after many heated debates, settled on what we consider to be the 12 most beautiful lakes in Lithuania.

If any of the lakes below catch your eye or if you’re simply unsure where and how to start – contact us for a free consultation, personally tailored travel plan and non-obligatory quotes for what is guaranteed to be an unforgettable lakeside experience!

Lake Tauragnas

Traditional Lithuanian sauna with lake Tauragnas visible through a window.
Traditional wooden Lithuanian sauna on the shore of Lake Tauragnas. © Egle Gal/Baltic Gently

Tauragnas is the deepest lake in Lithuania, with its deepest point reaching 62.5 meters. Its size is nothing to frown at either, occupying a solid 5.13 square kilometers. Lake Tauragnas is located in Aukštaitija National Park, Tauragnas town and is only 15 kilometers away from the city of Utena.

The grandeur of Lake Tauragnas can be admired from numerous footpaths and observation platforms situated alongside nearby slopes. For those who want to get a closer look (and get their feet wet), two floating footbridges offer perfect vantage points.

You can also explore the lake by boat or take a dip yourself! Just be warned: the waters here take a while to warm up. While the average depth of Lake Tauragnas is 18.7 meters, the deepest parts go as far as 62.5 meters deep (Lithuanian Parliament). So, even in Summer months, it’s best to wait until late afternoon before braving what is known as the deepest lake in Lithuania!

If you do decide to get closer to the beachfront, there is a pleasant sand beach to welcome your bare feet! Additionally, the shore is illuminated by modern lighting and has plenty of gazebos, volleyball courts, playgrounds for kids and outdoor changing facilities. And for those who prefer a natural shade, the local forest situated nearby offers plenty of opportunities to take an afternoon nap or go fruit picking.

Just like most lakes in Lithuania, Lake Tauragnas has an interesting origin myth behind its name. It’s to do with a local duke, whose musical skills were so good, that local aurochs (“taurai” in Lithuanian) couldn’t resist approaching him and, in human voices, advising him of a perfect location to build his castle. Be sure to ask our guides for a full story – it’s a perfect campfire tale!

Fisherman ice fishing in a hole drilled in ice of frozen solid lake Tauragnas in Lithuania.

While Lake Tauragnas is best visited in Summer, it is just as popular a destination in Winter and Spring months too! In Winter, locals clean up the snow from a firmly frozen lake and establish an ice skating rink, suitable for both ice-skating professionals and beginners alike. Others opt-in for ice fishing, drilling holes in the frozen lake (far away from the ice skating rink, thankfully!) in hopes of catching something to boast about. While those who prefer a more steamy experience, relax in a variety of traditional Lithuanian saunas.

No matter what time of year you choose, Lake Tauragnas offers plenty of memorable experiences. Get in touch with our destination management experts for a free consultation and personally tailored travel plan.

Lake Baluošas

People with bare legs stretched, resting on a wooden boardwalk on lake Baluošas in Lithuania.

Lake Baluošas is yet another treasure of Aukštaitija National Park. Spanning 4.62 square kilometers and 10.7 meters deep on average, it is located in the Ignalina region (Lithuanian Ministry of Environment)

Wild nature and well-preserved ethnographic villages cover the lakes’ shores but don’t fret – the traveling infrastructure is all there! Lake Baluošas is famous for having an island with another lake in its center – a lake within a lake, as the locals call it. It offers a perfect spot for adventure-seeking kayakers.

The so-called capital of Aukštaitija National Park, town Ginučiai offers a wide choice of tasty home-cooked food, Ginučiai Mill Museum as well as numerous splendid cottages to stay in.

Personally, we would suggest driving a few kilometers more to the nearest village. That way you can still be within an arm’s reach of all the major locations while reaping all the benefits of staying in a settlement positioned further away from civilization.

The surroundings are perfect for hikes on foot or bicycles, fans of fishing and, of course, those, who want to experience traditional Lithuanian sauna.

However, the very first thing we recommend to our clients who visit Aukštaitija National Park, is to go kayaking. While Lake Baluošas itself is less suited for beginners, there are plenty of forest rivers that will welcome anyone who is only getting started with a kayak. Surrounded by forest green, you will experience crystal clear waters with glimmers of fishes darting in them and who knows – you might just discover a pleasant rest stop along your route, with a welcoming campsite for a picnic and rope swings.

Kayak, surrounded by forest trees, sailing in lake Baluošas, Lithuania.

Lake Baluošas is one of the few lakes where you can find vendace – freshwater whitefish that is considered a delicatess by the locals. If that didn’t get your mouth watering, there are plenty of other fresh or smoked fish to choose from: eels, breams, pike perches and so on. In addition to fish, we recommend trying seasonal local dishes made with ingredients from local forests.

Next to Lake Baluošas you can find Šuminai – another famous village, where one of the locally most famous movies about the Lithuanian equivalent of Robin Hood, called Tadas Blinda has been filmed. Not too far from Šuminai, you can hike to Ginučiai Mound – a historical settlement of Balts or Ladakalnis hill. From the latter, you will be able to admire nine lakes and recharge your energies from an oak growing on the hill itself.

One of the most renowned local destinations is Stripeikiai. It is the oldest still surviving village in Lithuania, which has been mentioned in writing as early as 1357. Stripeikiai hosts the Lithuanian Museum of Ancient Beekeeping, founded by a Lithuanian Bronius Kazlas, who was inspired to do so by a dream he had.

In winter, Lake Baluošas offers a chance to recharge in the silence of surrounding forests, relax in a local home spa – a service provided by experienced locals that comes together with therapeutic massage using local herbs, ritualistic sauna and tub. You can also participate in local workshops where you can learn anything that is to do with Lithuanian traditions: from baking traditional bread to ice fishing.
Get in touch with our destination management experts for a free consultation and personally tailored travel plan.

Lake Alaušas

Fishermen fishing in lake Alaušas in Lithuania.

Lake Alaušas is located in the Utena region and is the tenth largest lake in Lithuania, occupying 10.71 square kilometers (Lithuanian Environmental Protection Agency). It is surrounded by Rukliai and Ąžuolaušis forests from the East and is renowned for its clear water and numerous schools of fishes.

With sandy beaches, gentle shore slopes and shallow waters, it is a perfect and one of the safest choices for families with young children. While the average depth of the lake is 11.9 meters (deepest point 42 meters), you would need to swim for quite a while to reach the point where your feet would no longer touch the ground.

Lake’s beachfront has all the necessary infrastructure to make your stay one to remember: playgrounds for children, open-air exercise area with modern equipment and, to top it all off, a diving center!

You can also admire Lake Alaušas from the air! A 20 minute flight with a classical Cessna 172 airplane over its waters is sure to leave you stunned – just like a variety of other air adventures you can experience in Lithuania.

If all these activities leave you feeling hungry, you can always enjoy a traditional fish soup, made from the fish caught in the very same Alaušas lake. And after an eventful day, nearby camping sites or numerous country-side cottages will allow you to rest peacefully before the next adventure-filled day!

Like many other lakes discussed in this article, lake Alaušas is best enjoyed in Summer but is also worth visiting during colder months. From beginner-friendly ice skating and ice fishing to traditional Lithuanian saunas, Alaušas has just as much to offer in Winter too! Contact our destination management experts for a free consultation and non-obligatory quotes.

Lake Žuvintas

Sunset over lake Žuvintas in Lithuania with migrating birds filling the whole sky.

Lake Žuvintas is the shallowest lake in Lithuania, with average depth of only 0.6 meters and deepest point reaching only 3 meters. Occupying ​​9.65 square kilometers, it is located in Alytus region, central Lithuania and is part of UNESCO protected Žuvintas Biosphere Reserve (UNESCO).

This lake is a perfect destination for bird watching, especially during bird migration period. Lake Žuvintas is surrounded by reed-swamps, sedge fens and raised bogs. Such a great diversity of habitats and vegetation creates excellent conditions for numerous waterfowl and other species. 

Lakeside cottage on the shore of lake Žuvintas in Lithuania.

You can admire the distinctive and varied sounds of all winged inhabitants while traversing a 350 meter wooden boardwalk, that is conveniently hidden from wildlife’s sight by reeds. At the end of the path, there is an observation tower that offers stunning views and plenty of opportunities to get those perfect camera shots. At the end of the day, you can always retire in one of the local tree houses.

While there are very few locals within the biosphere reserve (population of only 1,100 within the buffer zone), there is definitely no shortage of birds. From exceptionally rare Corn Crakes and Aquatic Warblers to much more common European Marsh Harriers, Common Cranes or Bluethroats, Lake Žuvintas is a must for any bird lover who finds themselves in Lithuania.

Contact our destination management experts for a free consultation and non-obligatory quotes.

Lake Ilgis

Ilzenbergas manor visible from a boat sailing in lake Ilgis, Lithuania.

Lake Ilgis (also known as Ilgė or Garajis in Lithuanian and as Ilzu or Garais lake in Latvian) is famous for being in the shape of Lithuania. Occupying 1.45 square kilometers, it spans two Baltic countries: Rokiškis region in Lithuania on the South side and Jekabpils region in Latvia on the North end.

It is best known for Ilzenbergas village that is near the Lithuanian-Latvian border. The most famous object within the village is Ilzenbergas Manor. It was built in the 16th century and belonged to a local nobleman Berndt Kersenboick (Lithuanian Association of Manors and Castles). Having changed hands multiple times, it has been renovated and became a well-known tourist attraction.

The Ilzenbergas Manor has a fine-dining restaurant within its halls, sells organic manor produce and offers guided tours as well as trips across Ilgė lake on their environment-friendly electric catamaran that features its own bar and kitchen and is designed to accommodate both individual tourists and large groups.

Every Summer, the Manor attracts large crowds with live music concerts all the while accommodating those who yearn for more solitary experiences. The large park (0.1 square kilometer) has plenty of benches and paths alongside the lakefront for those romantic walks. You can even visit the so-called “love island” in the middle of Lake Ilgys!

Clear skies and peaceful day at Lake Ilgis in Lithuania.

And for nature lovers, the park boasts over 23 imported tree types. One of which (and our favorite one!) is Ilzenbergas Manor Oak, a massive 30.5 meters high oak that has been recognised by Lithuania as state-Protected Natural Heritage (15min).

All in all, lake Ilgė is a perfect getaway both for those romantically inclined as well as large families looking for an opportunity to escape from the hustle and bustle of city life. Contact our destination management experts for a free consultation and non-obligatory quotes.

Lake Dusia

A person paddle boarding during a sunrise over lake Dusia in Lithuania.

Lake Dusia is the cleanest and third largest lake in Lithuania (23.46 square kilometers). Located in Lazdijai region, it is part of Meteliai Regional Park and is a perfect destination for bird watching, pilgrimages or kitesurfing.

Meteliai Regional Park Visitor Centre, located on the East bank of lake Dusia allows visitors to learn more about the local wildlife, rent bicycles, canoes, kayaks or paddle boards as well as use professional optical equipment to admire the amazing sights of lake Dusia and keep an eye on numerous bird species local to the area.

This is yet another lake on this list that is perfect for bird watchers. Over 130 bird species can be found in the park, with over 10,000 individual birds having been observed over a single migratory season.

Pilgrims will find two churches on Lake Dusia banks: Diocesan Cross Church of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Our Lady of the Rosary on the South-West side and Transfiguration of Christ Church on South-West bank.

Prelomciškė Mound near lake Dusia in Lithuania.

Those, interested in ancient history and having archeological inclinations, will definitely want to visit Prelomciškė Mound located on the North-West bank of lake Dusia. The mound once had an ancient settlement and a wooden castle built on it (Lithuanian Government). Even in modern days, it still attracts large crowds for traditional Midsummer Day festival (Joninės) and Oninės festival celebrations.

Lastly, Dusia lake is a kitesurfing spot that we would personally recommend as the most beginner-friendly spot in Lithuania. The water is shallow even several meters from the shore and with it being an inland lake, we find the wind to be a lot less gusty than on other Lithuanian lakes.

Lake Dusia also has a parking lot close to the beach as well as street food kiosks to satisfy your hunger while you plan your next adventure. Contact our destination management experts for a free consultation and non-obligatory quotes.

Lake Plateliai

Sunset over calm waters of lake Plateliai in Lithuania.

Lake Plateliai is the 9th largest lake (12 square kilometers) and the clearest lake in Lithuania. It is located in Žemaitija region and is part of Žemaitija National Park. Lake Plateliai offers the largest variety of activities and events out of all Lithuanian lakes, so let’s get started!

It is best known for an impressive 24 kilometer circular cycling route that goes around the whole Lake Plateliai and allows cyclists to experience all that Žemaitija National Park has to offer. The beauty of this cycling route is that you can go at your own pace, stopping and spending the night at one of local camping sites or lake houses whenever you wish.

If you have a more competitive nature, Lake Plateliai hosts an annual swimming marathon every July. A tradition that’s been ongoing for over forty years, the marathon has two courses: a beginner-friendly 1.8 kilometers course, that is the most popular and a more professional-oriented one of 3.5 kilometers, that only a handful of people dare to enter.

Even if you don’t feel fit enough to participate in the marathon itself, there are other competitions that celebrate originality rather than physical fitness! Why not try your hand in the race of “unswimmable boats” (hint: while baths float surprisingly well, keeping them from flipping over is the real challenge). Or you can surprise everyone in “the most original jump into water” contest, where only imagination is your limit.

Midsummer Day festival (Joninės) flower wreath floating in lake Plateliai in Lithuania.

Every February, Lake Plateliai becomes one of the main destinations to celebrate Mardi Gras (Užgavėnės). But even if your visit ends up being after February, don’t fret! You can always visit local exhibitions and see the masks and all other objects that were used in Mardi Gras (Užgavėnės) celebrations in the past.

And in June, Lake Plateliai attracts people from all corners of Lithuania for yet another traditional celebration – the Midsummer Day festival (Joninės).

If you rather prefer to avoid large groups and festivals, and travel at your own pace instead, there are plenty of places to cater to your preferences too! Those, academically inclined or just interested in history will definitely want to pay a visit to the Cold War Museum situated in what once was an underground missile silo.

For pilgrims or those interested in architecture and art, one of the oldest Lithuanian shrines – Saint Peter and Paul Church is a sight to behold. It is a wooden church built in 1744 that houses plenty of old paintings, liturgical garments that survived all the tumultuous events of the last few centuries and have been recognised as monuments of art since then.

And for those who want to ensure that atrocities of World War II are never forgotten and pay their respects to the victims of Holocaust, Jasmine Mountain (Bokštakalnis) provides a chance to do just that. It is a Jewish cemetery, dedicated to around three dozen people of Jewish descent who have been murdered and buried here at the start of WWII.

Scuba diver, partly submerged in lake Plateliai in Lithuania.

Lake Plateliai is an archaeologically important location by itself. The water level was much lower in the past and as such, some of the islands together with their settlements are now underwater. Archeologists found remains of two castles and suspect that legendary Queen Bona might have once lived there. With seven islands on the lake: Veršių, Pilies, Pliksalė, Briedsalė, Ubagsalė, Gaidsalė, Šončelis – all of which are state-protected monuments of nature and heritage, there is definitely no shortage of historical locations to visit (Žemaitija National Park).

But if you think that all that’s interesting has already been discovered, think again! Less than two decades ago, archeologists discovered an underwater pagan shrine, composed of a number of large stones ornamented with Baltic Pagan Symbols. Further investigation also led to the discovery of three wooden boats – each about 5.5 meters in length (Klaipėda University). 

Since Lake Plateliai is famous for having the clearest water in the whole Lithuania and also houses a diving club in Plateliai town, right on the West bank of the lake, why not rent out professional scuba diving gear and go exploring to make the next newsworthy underwater discovery? It is the best spot for scuba diving in Lithuania!

Alternatively, if you prefer to remain above the water, the local yacht club is guaranteed to provide you with fanciful means of traversing Lake Plateliai without getting overly wet.
With so many activities to choose from, it can certainly be difficult to put together a concrete plan for your visit. That’s why we advise to contact our destination management experts for a free consultation and personally tailored travel plan.

Lake Drūkščiai

Early morning fog over lake Drūkščiai in Lithuania.

Lake Drūkščiai (or Drysvyaty in Belarussian), is the largest lake in Lithuania (44.79 square kilometers). Located partly in Zarasai region in Lithuania, partly in Vitebsk region in Belarus, Lake Drūkščiai is known for its role in cooling the reactors of the now defunct Ignalina Nuclear Power Plant.

The lake became famous after the airing of HBO miniseries “Chernobyl”, which were filmed in the nearby Ignalina Nuclear Power Plant. Following the success of “Chernobyl”, masses of tourists started flocking to tour the now defunct power plant and its surroundings (Time.com).

Two types of tours are offered to the public. You can go for a quick (approximately 1 hour) look, that is suitable for everyone, including children. If you have time (and curiosity), we would recommend picking the longer tour (approximately 3 hours). However, due to the danger of minor exposure to ion rays, this tour is best avoided by pregnant women and children under 18.

The short tour will allow you to visit the plant’s informational center, where you will be able to inspect miniature models of the plant and learn some interesting facts from the tour guides. The longer one will see you venturing deep into the plant and present you with an opportunity to experience both the area where now retired reactors used to produce energy as well as the plant control room first hand.

Last time we were there, the tour waitlist was usually filled two months in advance, so we would advise you to get in touch with us as soon as possible to ensure that you don’t miss out on this unique opportunity.

Multiple boats moored on a shore of lake Drūkščiai in Lithuania.

If you think you’ll need to pack a Geiger counter to safely venture anywhere near Lake Drūkščiai, better think again. The lake is being tested by scientists regularly and while the effect the power plant had on local fauna and flora is undeniable, it is by no means dangerous to humans (Oregon State University). In fact, ever since the plant was shut down in 2009, the lake is cooling down and underwater vegetation seems to be improving with each passing year. 

However, if you’re looking for a five star beach resort, better look at other lakes discussed in this article. While there are some considerably well-maintained beaches, the tourism sector in this region is somewhat lacking due to the lake being far away from main cities.

While Lake Drūkščiai has a fairly large yacht club, due to a considerable part of the lake being in Belarus, the water activities are somewhat limited and heavily controlled (no one wants an international incident, especially in this political climate!).

While the local town of Visaginas has plenty of trails, outdoor exercising areas, observation platforms and so on, they are primarily designated for locals. The only exception that attracts masses from both Lithuania and abroad would be the annual Visaginas Jet Ski Grand Prix held in June and taking place in Lake Drūkščiai.

All in all, our suggestion would be to consider visiting Lake Drūkščiai primarily for the Ignalina Nuclear Power Plant – the first of its kind to be successfully shut down in the whole world. Get in touch with us for assistance with booking the tour and perfect place to stay as well as travel arrangements and more!.

All other water-related desires will be best served by other lakes discussed in this article.

Lake Galvė

Trakai Island Castle as seen from a boat in the middle of lake Galvė in Lithuania.

Lake Galvė is yet another lake in Lithuania that is known for its depth (46.7 meters at its deepest point). Lake Galvė covers 3.61 square kilometers and has six other lakes around it. It is located in the Trakai region and surrounds the best known castle in Lithuania: Trakai Island Castle.

Before Vilnius became Lithuania’s capital, this title briefly belonged to Trakai – between years 1321 and 1323. There are plenty of origin myths about both the castle and the nearby lakes (while Lake Galvė is the largest and best known one, Trakai region has around 200 lakes in total!). Our guides will be more than happy to share numerous legends of all 200 lakes but be warned: many of these myths include love stories that feature somewhat not so happy endings!

The best way to experience Lake Galvė is by boat, water bike or a yacht. The shore has plenty of bays and sees a plethora of sailing, boating and rowing all year round! In fact, Lake Galvė is favored by Olympic medal-winning rowers for practice. The lake itself is sprinkled with 21 islands, the largest of which is home to Trakai Island Castle. Nothing beats taking a guided tour in a private boat or in a publicly-accessible catamaran around this spectacular castle!

Alternatively, you can admire Lake Galvė from a bicycle: the lake has a well developed bicycle trail, spanning 18 kilometers from Trakai Island Castle to Užutrakis Manor. This trail has plenty of attractions, one of which is the Hill of Angels – a hill filled with angels carved from wood. This is one of those sites where a guide is a must to fully understand the intricate meaning behind all the symbols and shapes.

Lastly, if you’re not too afraid of heights, balloon flights are another option. They have become increasingly popular in the last few years and we can vouch from our own experience: there’s nothing like experiencing many of Lithuania’s spectacular sights from the air!

Or, if you prefer a less active pastime, be sure to pay a visit to either the remains of Trakai Peninsula Castle or the Trakai Island Castle itself. Both of them are hosts to their respective museums and offer plenty of tours to those interested in learning more (Go Vilnius). Trakai Island Castle is home to a variety of events throughout the year: from theater shows and classical music concerts to parties and performances by such stars as Moby.

The Castle and Trakai town transform with each season, reshaping themselves for numerous traditional festivals such as Mardi Gras (Užgavėnės) in February and Midsummer Day festival (Joninės) in mid-June or even its very own festival – Trakai Summer in early June. And if you’re looking for a place to spend New Year’s Eve – look no further as we can vouch from our first-hand experience that fireworks over Lake Galvė are simply spectacular!

Trakai Island Castle as seen from a small yacht in the middle of lake Galvė in Lithuania.

No matter which option or season you’ll choose, all of them are bound to leave you hungry! Luckily for you, Trakai are the destination for authentic kibins – traditional Crimean Karaite pastries filled with mutton and onions. Many British visitors find them similar to Cornish pasties.

Food is not the only aspect brought to Lithuania by the Crimean Karaite diaspora. In fact, the whole town of Trakai was built by them when Grand Duke of Lithuania, Vytautas the Great invited them to settle in Lithuania in 1218 (CiteSeerX). The traditions and beliefs of Crimean Karaite permeate the whole town of Trakai . The traditional houses built by them truly are the works of art, with deeper meaning behind each and every cultural peculiarity.

For example, even the number of windows that each Crimean Karaite house has from the street side bears a deep significance. It is said that the first window is dedicated to God, the second one – to the master of the house, while the third one – to Vytautas the Great, as a tribute for his hospitality.

To this day, the Crimean Karaite community remains active, with a local museum dedicated to their culture and beliefs as well as summer language school for those who want to take a step further.

All in all, Lake Galvė has plenty to offer no matter what time of the year you pick for your visit. While there is no travel by boat in winter, you can quite easily and safely walk (or skate) from one island to the other over frozen solid lake.
With so many activities to choose, we would be glad to assist you by providing a free consultation and putting together a custom-tailored travel plan just for you. Contact us for more info.

Lake Sartai

Two people sitting on the edge of a long wooden boardwalk stretching far into the lake Sartai in Lithuania.

Lake Sartai has the longest shoreline of 79 kilometers in Lithuania. Situated in Rokiškis and Zarasai regions, it occupies 13.32 square kilometers and boasts of six islands in its waters, one of which (Dumblynė) is occupied to this day. Part of Sartai Regional Park, it is famous for horse racing.

Shaped in the form of a branched out tree, the origin of Sartai lake is hailed from myths where light brown (“sarti” in Lithuanian, hence the name) coloured horses had drowned in the lake and to this day keep running around the bottom of Lake Sartai restlessly.

While on its southern shore, within the town of Dusetos, you can find a high quality beach with all the amenities one can expect, the lake is most famous for winter horse racing.

Since 1865, the first Saturday of every February marks the start of the annual Lake Sartai horse race on ice! While initially the jockeys used to race on the frozen lake itself, nowadays, due to safety requirements, the race is organized at a local hippodrome in Dusetos town, located right on the shore of the lake (Guardian).

Horse racing on winter ice near the lake Sartai in Lithuania

Tens of thousands of people flock to the shore of Lake Sartai on this day and even those who aren’t interested in horse racing, find plenty to see and do. From early morning to late evening, you can visit folk art fairs, see traditional Lithuanian song and dance performances, treat yourself to a hearty meal or just get steamy in a traditional Lithuanian Sauna.

Fishermen will also rejoice: Lake Sartai is a perfect habitat for a variety of fish species. The biggest catch ever that is verifiable in the records was a 110 kilogram catfish in 1937. Try and beat that!

No matter what time of the year you visit, there is one sight you simply can not miss. And that is the Sartai Observation Tower. The whole lake and Sartai Regional Park can be seen from it. However, be warned that it is definitely not for the faint of heart (or legs for that matter!). Climbing the stairs can be a challenge but those who manage to reach the very stop will be generously rewarded by beautiful sights from the observation platform – situated at a stunning height of 36 meters.

Contact our destination management experts for a free consultation and non-obligatory quotes and experience Lake Sartai today!

Lake Asveja

Lake Asveja in early Spring in Lithuania.
Lake Asveja in early Spring in Lithuania. © Egle Gal/Baltic Gently

Lake Asveja is the longest lake in Lithuania, reaching 29.7 kilometers in length. It occupies 9.78 square kilometers and runs along three major regions: Molėtai, Švenčionys and Vilnius. 

With such astonishing length and connections to Žeimena river (and, through it, to Neris river), it is the most popular choice for canoeing and kayaking experiences.

Lake Asveja is alternatively known as Lake Dubingiai. A name that comes from Dubingiai Castle, which was located on a peninsula, partly surrounded by Lake Asveja. It was the largest castle in Lithuania, built in Renaissance style in the early 16th century for a Lithuanian noble family known as Radvilas (Lithuanian Government). While only ruins remain today, it is a sight to behold nevertheless. And with our guides accompanying you along the historical 1.5 kilometer track, you will experience the castle as if it was still standing tall!

Lake Asveja as seen from Dubingiai town in Lithuania.
Lake Asveja as seen from Dubingiai mount in Lithuania. © Egle Gal/Baltic Gently

In addition to the castle, lake Asveja sports another curiosity – a 84 meter long wooden bridge, that is believed to be the very first Lithuanian wooden bridge that runs over a lake. Opened in 1934 by President of that time, Antanas Smetona, it has been renovated in 2019 to ensure safety and convenience while preserving its historical aspects.

If bridges aren’t your thing, perhaps a local inn will spark your interest? In 1842 local earl Boleslovas Tiškevičius built what is now known as the most valued building in the whole region: the Dubingiai Inn. However don’t let the earthly delights of a pub prevent you from visiting uniquely modern Dubingiai Saint George’s Church. Built solely from wood, it had burned down to the ground two times back in the sixties, but each time it came back stronger and more beautiful than the last.

And yet, there is more! The bottom of lake Asveja has been intermittently explored by underwater archeologists since 1998 (LRT). Their most recent find was the remains of a medieval soldier, together with his sword and two knives, ornamented with Baltic symbols! While it might not be for everyone, you can embark on your very own archeological exploration trip and go scuba diving in lake Asveja!

Whether it’s kayaking, canoeing, scuba diving or historical tours – lake Asveja presents plenty of opportunities to do it all! Contact our destination management experts for a free consultation and non-obligatory quotes.

Green Lakes

A group of people on a shore of Green Lakes in Lithuania.

Green Lakes (also known as Žalieji Lakes in Lithuanian), are in fact six lakes located in the North-East region of Vilnius, the capital of Lithuania and are part of Verkiai Regional Park (Lithuanian Encyclopaedia). While we wouldn’t consider Green Lakes the most beautiful per se, they are definitely the most convenient!

Located approximately half an hour away from Vilnius Airport, Green Lakes offer a convenient get-away when you just can’t spare the time for a day-trip to any of the other lakes mentioned in this article. In Summer months, we recommend starting your day with our Vilnius Free Walking Tour (while the free tour runs only on first Sunday of every month, you can always book the private version of the tour at your convenience) and then proceeding to relax in the cool waters of Green Lakes.

From the infrastructure side, the largest of the Green Lakes, Lake Balsys (0.56 square kilometers) has a pleasant and well-equipped city beach and, according to surveys (and our own first-hand experience!), is one of the most popular swimming spots in Vilnius. Other five lakes (Gulbinas, Little Gulbinas, Akis, Raistelis and Baraukos Akis) have less developed infrastructure but at the same time are a lot less crowded – perfect choice for when you want to enjoy green waters in solitude.

The Green Lakes got their name from the color of their waters, which, no matter what time of the year you visit them, is… You guessed it: emerald green! However, don’t fret, as the waters are perfectly safe and won’t leave you looking like a stranded alien. The green color comes from large quantities of carbonates (in other words – limestone) that are located in the groundwater feeding the lakes.
While we find other lakes more beautiful and having much more to offer, Green Lakes are a perfect quick get-away from the hustle and bustle of the city. Get in touch with our destination management experts for a free consultation and assistance with transportation.

Map of 12 most beautiful lakes in Lithuania

We’ve made a Google Maps map with 12 top lakes discussed in this article just for you!

Final Thoughts

There you have it. 12 Lithuanian lakes we find the most beautiful. While we focussed on the most impressive and renowned pools of water, that doesn’t mean that the other 5988 (approximately) lakes and ponds in Lithuania aren’t worth visiting!

All of them offer something unique – whether it is a small pond dug out in the yard of a private cottage or a relatively unknown wonder hidden in the depths of Lithuania’s many forests. Let us know your expectations and desires, and our experienced local guides will recommend the perfect destination for your lakeside experience.

No matter the location, size or renown, all lakes (including the majority of those who didn’t make it into this article) offer the following experiences:

  • Relaxing swim in either public or private beaches
  • Workshops on baking traditional foods, weaving, crafting, ceramics and so on
  • Reinvigorating yourself in a traditional Lithuanian sauna
  • Yoga, massage, animal therapy sessions
  • Sailing, water jetting, water skiing, wakeboarding, paddleboarding and so on
  • Horse riding
  • Kayaking safari at night (where everything underwater is illuminated for you)
  • Scuba diving
  • Foraging and fruit picking
  • Traditional festivals, theater shows and music performances
  • And much, much more (if an activity you’re interested in is not listed here – odds are that it’s definitely possible to arrange it!)

Pick your season, let us know and our team will do the rest to arrange a perfect water-side experience specifically tailored to your individual desires!

Frequently Asked Questions

Where to stay lakeside?

One of the options we love the most and recommend to all our customers is lakeside tree houses. But if you have other preferences, lakeside cottages, cabins or even luxurious hotels or private accommodation options are available. Contact us for full list of options available.

Is it safe to visit Lithuanian lakes?

While common-sense safety practices are recommended – just the same as everywhere else in the world, the Lithuanian lakes are perfectly safe.

Majority of public beaches have lifeguards on duty (please double-check with our team for exact details depending on your destination) and the emergency services are fast to respond.

Regarding crime, some of our team members had spent their youth hitchhiking and camping in tents or couchsurfing near lakes mentioned in (and omitted from) this article and never had any incidents.

Crime rate in Lithuania is 33.44 incidents per 100,000 residents (Is it safe to travel to Lithuania right now in 2023). To put things in comparison, this number is over 30% lower than that in the UK. So if you feel safe to visit London for your holiday shopping, we guarantee that you will find Lithuania at least 30% safer!

Which Lithuanian lake should I visit?

We wish we could just pick one single lake and recommend it across the board to every single customer. While that would make things a lot easier, the reality is that all Lithuanian lakes are unique and each offers something different. We would recommend contacting us for a free consultation and we will do our best to recommend the best option based on your desires and situation.

Start planning your trip with Egle Gal

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Article by

Egle Gal

Founder and Tour Director at Baltic Gently. Egle Gal is the founder of Baltic Gently and Tour Director. With over ten years of experience guiding tourists and handcrafting personalized travel tours in Baltic States, she is dedicated to helping travellers from all over the world to experience the Baltic States and particularly Lithuania. Gently. Before founding Baltic Gently, Egle worked as a guide throughout the Baltic States and New Zealand, as well as spoken at some cultural presentations in France.

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