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Country Guides for Europe

Lithuania

Lithuania The largest of the Baltic States, Lithuania is a country of lakes, forest, plains, and gently rolling hills, bordered to the west by the Baltic Sea. The capital city of Vilnus has the largest Old Town in Eastern Europe, where the Baroque period is beautifully represented in architecture and artwork. To the north, the Hill of the Crosses offers a stunning example of the spirituality and sheer determination of the Lithuanian people. Declared illegal, destroyed, cut off and flattened multiple times by the Soviet regime, the crosses continued to reappear. On the coast, the sand dunes of the Curonian Spit and the beaches of Palanga are a great place to relax, or you can soak your stress away in the curative waters of Druskininkai's mineral springs.

Language: Lithuanian (official) 82%, Russian 8%, Polish 5.6%, other

Major International Airports:

City

Airport
Airport
Code
Distance
From City
VilniusVilnius AirportVNO3.7 miles S

Food and waterborne diseases are the number one cause of illness in travelers. Travelers’ diarrhea can be caused by viruses, bacteria, or parasites, which are found throughout Eastern Europe and can contaminate food or water. Infections may cause diarrhea and vomiting (E. coli, Salmonella, cholera, and parasites), fever (Typhoid fever and toxoplasmosis), or liver damage (hepatitis). Make sure your food and drinking water are safe.

Malaria is a serious, but preventable infection that can be fatal. Your risk of malaria may be high in these countries, including cities. Prevent this deadly disease by seeing your health care provider for a prescription antimalarial drug and by protecting yourself against mosquito bites. All travelers to malaria-risk areas in Eastern Europe, including infants, children, and former residents of Eastern Europe, are at risk for malaria. Parts of the countries of Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan have malaria risk.. Travelers to malaria-risk areas in Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan should take the antimalarial drug chloroquine to prevent malaria. For additional information on malaria risk and prevention, see Malaria Information for Travelers to Eastern Europe and the Newly Independent States of the Former Soviet Union (NIS).

In Uzbekistan, the risk of malaria is low and varies along its border with Tajikistan; travelers to Uzbekistan or their health care provider should contact CDC (Malaria Hotline, 770-488-7788) for risk and prevention advice.

An outbreak of diphtheria is occurring in all the states of the former Soviet Union. Travelers to these areas should be sure that their diphtheria immunization is up to date.

Tickborne encephalitis, a viral infection of the central nervous system occurs chiefly in Central and Western Europe. Travelers are at risk who visit or work in forested areas during the summer months and who consume unpasteurized dairy products. Vaccine for this disease is not available in the United States at this time. To prevent tickborne encephalitis, as well as Lyme disease, travelers should take precautions to prevent tick bites.

Because motor vehicle crashes are a leading cause of injury among travelers, walk and drive defensively. Avoid nighttime travel if possible and always use seat belts.

There is no risk for yellow fever in Eastern Europe and the Newly Independent States of the Former Soviet Union (NIS). A certificate of yellow fever vaccination may be required for entry into certain of these countries if you are coming from countries in South America or sub-Saharan Africa. For detailed information, see Comprehensive Yellow Fever Vaccination Requirements. Also, find the nearest authorized U.S. yellow fever vaccine center.

CDC recommends the following vaccines (as appropriate for age):

See your doctor at least 4–6 weeks before your trip to allow time for shots to take effect.

  • Hepatitis A or immune globulin (IG).
  • Hepatitis B, if you might be exposed to blood (for example, health-care workers), have sexual contact with the local population, stay longer than 6 months, or be exposed through medical treatment.
  • Rabies, if you might be exposed to wild or domestic animals through your work or recreation.
  • Typhoid, particularly if you are visiting developing countries in this region.
  • As needed, booster doses for tetanus-diphtheria, measles, and a one-time dose of polio vaccine for adults. Hepatitis B vaccine is now recommended for all infants and for 11– to 12-year-olds who did not receive the series as infants.

To stay healthy, do...

  • Wash hands often with soap and water.
  • Drink only bottled or boiled water, or carbonated (bubbly) drinks in cans or bottles. Avoid tap water, fountain drinks, and ice cubes. If this is not possible, make water safer by BOTH filtering through an “absolute 1-micron or less” filter AND adding iodine tablets to the filtered water. “Absolute 1-micron filters” are found in camping/outdoor supply stores.
  • Eat only thoroughly cooked food or fruits and vegetables you have peeled yourself. Remember: boil it, cook it, peel it, or forget it.
  • If you are going to visit risk areas for malaria, take your malaria prevention medication before, during, and after travel, as directed. (See your doctor for a prescription.)
  • Protect yourself from mosquito bites:
    • Pay special attention to mosquito protection between dusk and dawn. This is when the type of mosquito whose bite transmits malaria is active.
    • Wear long-sleeved shirts, long pants, and hats.
    • Use insect repellents that contain DEET (diethylmethyltoluamide).
    • Read and follow the directions and precautions on the product label.
    • Apply insect repellent to exposed skin.
    • Do not put repellent on wounds or broken skin.
    • Do not breathe in, swallow, or get into the eyes (DEET is toxic if swallowed). If using a spray product, apply DEET to your face by spraying your hands and rubbing the product carefully over the face, avoiding eyes and mouth.
    • Unless you are staying in air-conditioned or well-screened housing, purchase a bed net impregnated with the insecticide permethrin or deltamethrin. Or, spray the bed net with one of these insecticides if you are unable to find a pretreated bed net.
    • DEET may be used on adults, children, and infants older than 2 months of age. Protect infants by using a carrier draped with mosquito netting with an elastic edge for a tight fit.
    • Children under 10 years old should not apply insect repellent themselves. Do not apply to young children’s hands or around eyes and mouth.
  • To prevent fungal and parasitic infections, keep feet clean and dry, and do not go barefoot.
  • Always use latex condoms to reduce the risk of HIV and other sexually transmitted diseases.


Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Ticks are the primary source of insect-borne disease in Lithuania, often carrying Lyme disease and encephalitis. Travelers should use topical insect repellent and wear insecticide-treated clothing in wooded and rural areas.

Download Magellan's Chart of Insect Protection and Water Purification Needs by CountryDownload Magellan's Chart of Insect Protection and Water Purification Needs by Country

The municipal water supply in Lithuania may be contaminated with viruses, bacteria and protozoa. Travelers are advised to treat water before drinking.

Download Magellan's Chart of Insect Protection and Water Purification Needs by CountryDownload Magellan's Chart of Insect Protection and Water Purification Needs by Country

SAFETY AND SECURITY: Civil unrest is not a problem in Lithuania and there have been no incidents of terrorism directed toward American interests. Incidents of anti-Americanism are rare. For the latest security information, Americans traveling abroad should regularly monitor the Department's Internet web site at http://travel.state.gov where the current Worldwide Caution Public Announcement, Travel Warnings, and Public Announcements can be found.

CRIME: Crimes against foreigners, while usually non-violent, are becoming more common. Pickpocketing and theft are problems, so personal belongings should be well-protected at all times. Theft from cars, carjackings, and car thefts occur regularly. Drivers should be wary of persons indicating they should pull over or that something is wrong with their car. Often, a second car or person is following, and when the driver of the targeted car gets out to see if there is a problem, the person who has been following will either steal the driver's belongings from the vehicle or get in and drive off with the car. Drivers should never get out of the car to check for damage without first turning off the ignition and taking the keys. Valuables also should not be left in plain sight in parked vehicles, as there have been increasing reports of car windows smashed and items stolen. Burglary of foreigners' homes is also prevalent; home alarm systems should be used whenever possible. American citizens should avoid walking alone or in small groups after dark. There have been cases of American citizens being drugged in bars and then taken elsewhere to be robbed. In any public area, one should always be alert to being surrounded by two or more people at once. Racially motivated verbal, and sometimes physical, harassment of American citizens of non-Caucasian ethnicity has been reported in major cities. Incidents of racially motivated attacks against foreigners have been reported in Klaipeda in particular.

The loss or theft abroad of a U.S. passport should be reported immediately to the local police and the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate. If you are the victim of a crime while overseas, in addition to reporting to local police, please contact the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate for assistance. The Embassy/Consulate staff can, for example, assist you to find appropriate medical care, to contact family members or friends and explain how funds could be transferred. Although the investigation and prosecution of the crime is solely the responsibility of local authorities, consular officers can help you to understand the local criminal justice process and to find an attorney if needed.

U.S. citizens may refer to the Department of State's pamphlet, A Safe Trip Abroad, for ways to promote a trouble-free journey. The pamphlet is available by mail from the Superintendent of Documents, U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, D.C. 20402, via the Internet at http://www.gpoaccess.gov, or via the Bureau of Consular Affairs home page at http://travel.state.gov.



Source: U.S. Department of State

Due to the moderating influence of the Baltic Sea, the climate of Lithuania is milder than the typical continental, and is more of a transitional climate between maritime and continental. Summers are warm, wet and humid, winters are cold and wet, and precipitation can be expected year round.

183

City
Annual
Precip. Days
Annual
Precip. Totals
Kaunas17825"
Klaipeda29"
Vilnius18527"

Lithuania's electrical current is 220/50 (volts/hz) and uses the plug adaptors listed to the right under Related Items. Please note: Not all electrical sockets in this country provide grounding. Many North American appliances are designed to operate only within the 100-125 volt range. These appliances will suffer damage if plugged into 220-250 volts without the proper transformer or converter.

To determine which plug adaptors you'll need and if you'll require a transformer or converter, use our Electrical Connection Wizard.

For a detailed discussion of international electrical standards, see our related article on Electrical and Phone Adaptation.

Download Magellan's Guide to World Electrical ConnectionsDownload Magellan's Guide to World Electrical Connections

ENTRY REQUIREMENTS: A valid passport is required to enter Lithuania. The passport must be valid for at least 6 months from the date of entry. U.S. citizens do not need Lithuanian visas for most stays of 90 days or less. Travelers remaining in Lithuania for more than 90 days within any six-month period must apply for temporary residency. For further information on entry requirements, contact the Lithuanian Embassy at 2622 16th Street N.W., Washington, D.C. 20009, tel. (202) 234-5860, http://www.ltembassyus.org for current information on visa requirements.

Travelers to Lithuania who also plan to enter Russia, even in transit, need a Russian visa. The Russian Embassy in Lithuania is able to provide same-day processing of tourist visas with the payment of an additional fee. Proof of medical insurance valid through the period of travel is required.

In an effort to prevent international child abduction, many governments have initiated procedures at entry and exit points. These often include requiring documentary evidence of family relationship and permission from the non-accompanying parent(s) or legal guardian for the child's travel. Having such documentation on hand, even if not required, may facilitate entry and departure.



Source: U.S. Department of State

The time zone for Lithuania is 2 hours offset from GMT, which means that if it is 12:00 noon in New York, the time in Lithuania would be 7:00 pm

The unit of currency in Lithuania is the litas (LTL).

Look up the current exchange rate using XE.com's Universal Currency Converter

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