Even if your pockets are empty, Vilnius is the perfect city to have fun without spending a fortune. The Lithuanian capital can offer exceptional attractions and experiences for free or very cheap.

Of course, you can always admire the stunning architecture and parks in the city center, but there is much more to do in terms of active and cultural leisure: free open galleries, tours, concerts, and panoramic views of Vilnius await everyone, even the most budget-minded.

Explore Art and History

On the last Sunday of every month, many museums open their doors and offer free admission. From contemporary art to Jewish history, it’s a great day to get informed and inspired. For more information on the various events, visit vilnius-events.lt. Also, keep an eye on the MO Museum and the National Gallery of Art, which often host free educational events and meetings with artists. Street art is a spectacular and always free activity. Visit the Open Gallery in the industrial courtyards of ‘Loftas’ for an ever-growing exhibition of street art paintings and installations, whatever the weather and whatever the time of day. Or take a tour of the city with the help of a ready-made street art brochure, which brings together the city’s most spectacular paintings.

Alternative art installations and creative projects can also be found in the independent Republic of Užupis, a bohemian area of the city where free art springs up around every corner. On Vilnelė or in the Jonas Mekas Draught Alley, you will be surprised by ever-changing installations, while in the courtyards of Užupis you will unexpectedly find sculptures or spaces decorated by residents in special ways.

Take a Breath of Fresh Air in Nature

Vilnius is one of Europe’s greenest capitals, with parks, squares and regional parks offering a wonderful opportunity to explore the changing nature on foot. You can choose your favourite scenery or visit Verkiai Palace Park or Belmontas and enjoy the beauty of nature as well as architecture. Visit the highest exposure in Lithuania: from the Pūčkoriai exposure you can see the Vilnia River meanders, the forests of Pavilniai Regional Park and the historic buildings of the manor and the cannon foundry.

You don’t have to leave the city centre to see Vilnius from above. Vilnius is surrounded by hills, each offering a different panorama of the Old Town. Climb Gediminas Hill for a closer look at the legendary symbol of Vilnius. From the Hill of the Three Crosses, you’ll see the red rooftops of the Old Town. Climb the comfortable steps leading to the top of Bekešas Hill and you will find yourself in Užupis. But nature in Vilnius is not just about forests and hills. In the Bernardine Garden, you’ll enjoy the singing fountain and the recreated garden of a 19th-century monk. The Bernardine Courtyard is a regular venue for concerts and events.

Vilnius’ largest park, Vingis Park, is easily accessible on foot or by bike from the city center, but you’ll feel like you’re in a forest. It’s ideal for picnics, rollerblading, and active leisure activities. You might even join one of the many free fitness classes that take place here.

Discover alternative routes

The residents of Vilnius walk on different paths, so one person’s Vilnius can be very different from another. Join free city tours with Vilnius residents and see a different kind of Vilnius you won’t find in the usual tourist guides. Do you like to explore the city at your own pace? The Vilnius Tourist Information Centre offers a wide range of themed routes. You can also get around by checking out the information here.

If you’ve already explored the city, get to know the Vilnius area. Go on a 100 km hike around Vilnius. You don’t have to do the whole route in one go; the 100 km route around Vilnius is divided into 10 convenient sections, so choose according to your mood: maybe you’re interested in forests, or maybe in gullies or historical sites.

Live in the swirl of events

Calculating costs when travelling is a great way to make friends if you stay in hostels. But forget the usual overcrowded rooms. At Downtown Forest Hostel, you’ll get closer to nature, barbecue your own meat or vegetables, listen to concerts and sleep like a baby.

And you don’t have to spend hundreds of euros to stay by Vilnius Cathedral overlooking Gediminas Castle. Stay at Pogo and you won’t have to overpay for the most beautiful views of Vilnius from your window.

Savour the flavours of the city

The city is full of spectacular restaurants and a wide choice of tasting dinners by famous chefs, but to really get to know the city, you’ll need to queue and not be afraid to get your chin covered in sauce. With food markets to suit all budgets, it’s a great way to fill up and feel the rhythm of city life. Halė Market is the perfect place for a late Saturday breakfast or a quick bite at lunch, while the Downtown Food Hall, open until late, is the perfect place to enjoy a meal or evening drink, as well as a film. The modern Paupys Food Hall in Vilnius’ newest district is perfect for enjoying the world’s most diverse flavours, as well as for meeting up with friends for a night out.

Vilnius is a beer lover’s paradise, where you can find small breweries or bars with just a few tables. For a real beer bar atmosphere, head to the Dėvėti bar or visit Špunka, the smallest bar in the city.

Get ready for adventure

Vilnius is a great city for walking, but cycling will allow you to see a different city and travel faster and further. Hop on an orange CycloCity bike and enjoy the wind in your hair for an incredibly low price. Grab your friends and take a trip on the Neris River by kayak or stand-up paddle. For an almost bird’s-eye view of the city, for a price of a few euros reach the top of St John’s Church tower.

Love adrenaline? Climb the stairs. Or maybe you want to see aeroplanes up close? Visit the Aircraft Observation Deck, where planes take off and land in full view, or visit the ‘Avia Solutions Group’ office complex for the most unexpected sight – a business-class aircraft in a building. If you prefer trains, visit the Railway Museum’s free outdoor exhibition in the Rail Park to get up close and personal with the different types of railway transport.

Get more

Those who know how to save money know the best secret: the City Discount Card. With ‘Vilnius Pass’, you can hop on a tour bus or take a guided walking tour for free whenever you want, get a free audioguide and explore the city on your own, or visit Vilnius’ most famous museums for free, or even visit the unforgettable TV tower.

‘Vilnius Pass’ has more than 60 offers and discounts – from museums to adventures like hot air balloons. See the full list here.

Worth to check

Worth to check

A Walk in Search of Art in Vilnius
A Walk in Search of Art in Vilnius

Vilnius is full of street art; you simply have to let your eyes wander.

Tips from locals
Tips from locals

Once you’ve visited all the must-see spots in Vilnius, plan some time – day or night – to experience the city in a less touristy way. Feel like a local – together with locals. Stroll around the city’s inspiring and beautiful spaces, grab a bite at popular food spots and have fun where locals go to do the same. Then you’ll definitely get the feel of just how cosy Vilnius is. Here are some of our top recommendations.

Discovering Vilnius on Foot
Discovering Vilnius on Foot

One of the greenest European capitals, and a compact city filled with parks, squares, and hiking trails