Enchanting and sparkling, bringing white winter and bright Christmas cheer - that's this year's Vilnius Christmas tree in Cathedral Square. Inspired by the beauty of winter nature and the patterns of real snowflakes, the illuminated tree features a swirl of 96 snowflakes, white spruce trees and mirrored surfaces that have been magnified more than 1,000 times, in different sizes and patterns. A huge Christmas star shining at the top arouses curiosity and hope.
Christmas felt surreal in 2020 with people spending the festive season indoors, but the Christmas tree in Vilnius kept its magic alive, setting the mood and spreading joy both in Cathedral Square and online! The tree’s design captured social distancing extremely well, but still managed to bring people together for the Christmas season. The traditional symbol became an embodiment of Vilnius – modern and creative, yet able to keep traditions at heart.
Last year, the Christmas tree checkmated all others around the world and was awarded the honour of most beautiful tree in Europe. Like a queen in a royal blue dress and silver cloak, the Christmas tree took on a chess theme. Nestled between the Cathedral Bell Tower and Gediminas’ Tower, and guarded by rows of pawns, the Christmas tree caught the attention of the whole world.
Its theme perfectly reflected the connection between modern life and history – chess was a popular game among the nobility and the rulers of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania when Vilnius was first founded.
The Christmas tree of 2018 reminded everyone about the passing of time. It featured a stylised clock that could be seen from the Cathedral Bell Tower as well as an unforgettable sight on the ground – you could tell the time by looking at the lights of the Christmas tree. Moving clock gear-snowflakes pulsated at the pace of the respective clock gear and stopped briefly every 15 minutes, while the Christmas tree itself flashed every hour, corresponding with the time of day. It was also named among world’s the top ten most beautiful trees.
The Christmas tree sheltered the entire Christmas village under its cloak of 70,000 bulbs and 900 decorations, creating a cosy atmosphere. The Christmas tree’s purple colour was a bold choice, as it is not normally a popular colour for Christmas decorations in Lithuania. A winning combination! This Christmas tree was recognised as the most beautiful in Europe.
It almost seemed as though the emerald Christmas tree, hiding under a shimmering cloak of 50,000 bulbs, was floating above Cathedral Square. The tree itself was 27 metres tall and the total width of its composition was 50 metres. The entire Christmas village shone bright and the unique tree captivated the world – it appeared on The Huffington Post’s list of the world’s most beautiful trees.
This was the first Christmas tree in Vilnius where you could go inside and enjoy listening to Lithuanian fairy tales. The Christmas tree invited people to remember this magical season during their childhood and imagine a cosy fairy tale house. Snow-covered roofs, cosy lights illuminating windows and even a balcony reflected the main theme – the world is one home. The Guardian and The Huffington Post put the Christmas tree on their lists of the most beautiful Christmas trees in the world, and the original idea was copied by other cities around the world the following year.