Klaipeda, or Memel, in Lithuania is situated at the mouth of the Curonian Lagoon where it flows into the Baltic Sea. During World War II, the city was captured by the Soviet Red Army. Unlike the rest of East Prussia, the Memel Territory was not considered part of the Soviet occupation zone, and was incorporated into the Lithuanian SSR. The city began to develop cultural activities in the 1970s and 1980s, such as the introduction of the Sea Festival cultural tradition.

Port: Klaipéda
Experience

Klaipéda

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  • Executive Collection Full Day Van

    PRICE is per vehicle

    This exclusive arrangement is designed to allow you the chance to customize your time ashore and discover the most interesting sights in the comfort and privacy of your own vehicle. With your private car and the personalized attention of your driver and English-speaking guide, you will have the flexibility and independence to design your itinerary ashore according to your own interests and sightsee at your own pace. See the most famous sights or go beyond to create your own intimate connections and unique cultural encounters.

    The Executive Collection is recommended for the single/solo traveler, couples, family, friends, and special interest groups traveling together. It can also be an excellent choice for physically challenged guests.

    Capacity: 6 guests

    PLEASE NOTE: Private cars/vans/minibuses are ordered per vehicle (not per person), and only one person in the party need order the vehicle. The price shown is the total cost for the vehicle, driver and English-speaking guide. Kindly note, however, that in certain ports only a driver/guide will be assigned (one person), due to limited availability. Entrance fees are not included in this price, in order to provide you with the most flexibility. In many ports, the number of vehicles available is extremely limited; therefore guests are encouraged to make their reservation as early as possible.

    Half-day private tours must depart between 8:00 a.m. and 9:00 am, or after 1:00 p.m.

    Upon embarkation, please consult the Destination Manager onboard to personally discuss your itinerary requirements and set your departure time.

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  • Executive Collection Full Day Car

    PRICE is per vehicle

    This exclusive arrangement is designed to allow you the chance to customize your time ashore and discover the most interesting sights in the comfort and privacy of your own vehicle. With your private car and the personalized attention of your driver and English-speaking guide, you will have the flexibility and independence to design your itinerary ashore according to your own interests and sightsee at your own pace. See the most famous sights or go beyond to create your own intimate connections and unique cultural encounters.

    The Executive Collection is recommended for the single/solo traveler, couples, family, friends, and special interest groups traveling together. It can also be an excellent choice for physically challenged guests.

    Capacity: 2 guests

    PLEASE NOTE: Private cars/vans/minibuses are ordered per vehicle (not per person), and only one person in the party need order the vehicle. The price shown is the total cost for the vehicle, driver and English-speaking guide. Kindly note, however, that in certain ports only a driver/guide will be assigned (one person), due to limited availability. Entrance fees are not included in this price, in order to provide you with the most flexibility. In many ports, the number of vehicles available is extremely limited; therefore guests are encouraged to make their reservation as early as possible.

    Half-day private tours must depart between 8:00 a.m. and 9:00 am, or after 1:00 p.m.

    Upon embarkation, please consult the Destination Manager onboard to personally discuss your itinerary requirements and set your departure time.

    Read More
  • Executive Collection Half Day Car

    PRICE is per vehicle

    This exclusive arrangement is designed to allow you the chance to customize your time ashore and discover the most interesting sights in the comfort and privacy of your own vehicle. With your private car and the personalized attention of your driver and English-speaking guide, you will have the flexibility and independence to design your itinerary ashore according to your own interests and sightsee at your own pace. See the most famous sights or go beyond to create your own intimate connections and unique cultural encounters.

    The Executive Collection is recommended for the single/solo traveler, couples, family, friends, and special interest groups traveling together. It can also be an excellent choice for physically challenged guests.

    Capacity: 2 guests

    PLEASE NOTE: Private cars/vans/minibuses are ordered per vehicle (not per person), and only one person in the party need order the vehicle. The price shown is the total cost for the vehicle, driver and English-speaking guide. Kindly note, however, that in certain ports only a driver/guide will be assigned (one person), due to limited availability. Entrance fees are not included in this price, in order to provide you with the most flexibility. In many ports, the number of vehicles available is extremely limited; therefore guests are encouraged to make their reservation as early as possible.

    Half-day private tours must depart between 8:00 a.m. and 9:00 am, or after 1:00 p.m.

    Upon embarkation, please consult the Destination Manager onboard to personally discuss your itinerary requirements and set your departure time.

    Read More
  • Executive Collection Half Day Van

    PRICE is per vehicle

    This exclusive arrangement is designed to allow you the chance to customize your time ashore and discover the most interesting sights in the comfort and privacy of your own vehicle. With your private car and the personalized attention of your driver and English-speaking guide, you will have the flexibility and independence to design your itinerary ashore according to your own interests and sightsee at your own pace. See the most famous sights or go beyond to create your own intimate connections and unique cultural encounters.

    The Executive Collection is recommended for the single/solo traveler, couples, family, friends, and special interest groups traveling together. It can also be an excellent choice for physically challenged guests.

    Capacity: 6 guests

    PLEASE NOTE: Private cars/vans/minibuses are ordered per vehicle (not per person), and only one person in the party need order the vehicle. The price shown is the total cost for the vehicle, driver and English-speaking guide. Kindly note, however, that in certain ports only a driver/guide will be assigned (one person), due to limited availability. Entrance fees are not included in this price, in order to provide you with the most flexibility. In many ports, the number of vehicles available is extremely limited; therefore guests are encouraged to make their reservation as early as possible.

    Half-day private tours must depart between 8:00 a.m. and 9:00 am, or after 1:00 p.m.

    Upon embarkation, please consult the Destination Manager onboard to personally discuss your itinerary requirements and set your departure time.

    Read More
  • Klaipeda Charm: Old Town, Palanga Amber Museum & Promenade

    Depart the pier for the drive to the Old Town of Klaipeda. Upon arrival, you will visit the Theater Square, and view its symbol; a sculpture of Annchen von Tharau. A family folklore band will greet your arrival with the song, Annchen von Tharau. You will then walk through the narrow streets of the Old Town. Along the way, you will see the old Fachwerk construction buildings, along with the houses where shoemakers, blacksmiths, bakers and other craftsmen lived.

    Next, you will re-board your coach, and drive through the central part of Klaipeda to Palanga. Upon arrival, a stop will be made at the Botanical Park. Inside the park, a 19th-century Neo-Renaissance-styled mansion now houses the Amber Museum. During your visit, the Amber Museum will reveal the marvel of its Baltic gold; amber's origins, places where it can be found, and amber processing and jewelry-making. You will also have an opportunity to stroll through the gardens, and observe the swans and other birds in the ponds.

    Your tour concludes with a visit to Palanga's Basanavicius Promenade, which has recently been refurbished, and is now the highlight of the area. Here, you will find cafes, bars and restaurants on both sides of the street. The Basanavicius Promenade leads on to the pier, and juts out over 1,500 feet into the Baltic Sea.

    Please note: Following your visit, you may opt to re-board your coach and proceed directly back to the pier and ship, or remain a bit longer in the Old Town of Klaipeda, and find your own way back to the ship. This tour involves a moderate amount of walking, at times over uneven surfaces, and may not be suitable for guests with walking difficulties.

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  • Soviet Nuclear Weapon Site

    Explore Lithuania's natural beauty, and the former nuclear threat imposed by its Soviet neighbors, during this visit to the Plokstine Forest and Soviet Nuclear Weapons Site.

    A stark reminder of the Cold War, the Soviet Nuclear Weapons Site was constructed in Zemaitija National Park under great secrecy in 1960, and became operational in 1963. Soldiers working around-the-clock excavated the silos by hand. Four silos housed the R 12 surface-to-surface missiles. The nuclear missiles were targeted towards the biggest European cities, including Berlin, London, Madrid and Paris. In 1962, similar missiles were deployed to Cuba from this site, creating what became known as the Cuban Missile Crisis. The Nuclear Weapons Site was closed in 1979. Today, four silos and the central control complex remain.

    Depart the pier for the drive to Zemaitija National Park, one of the most beautiful places in the Plokstine Forest, and home to the Soviet Nuclear Weapons Site. Upon arrival at the site, you will begin your guided tour of the 88.5-foot-deep corridors, mineshaft and underground tunnels of this old Soviet launch site. Along the way, you will see some of the symbols of the Soviet Army, and have an opportunity to climb through the narrow hatch and view one of the silos.

    In sharp contrast to this apocalyptic site, the Plokstine Forest is filled with an abundance of scenic vistas. On the return drive, you will view the most beautiful sites of the national park, including the crystal-clear waters of Plateliai Lake, and three spectacular islands. A stop will then be made at a Lithuanian cafe to sample some national dishes before returning to the pier and ship.

    Please note: If you are claustrophobic, do not enter the tunnels. The Soviet Nuclear Weapon site has not been reconstructed, and there are some uncomfortable areas in the underground tunnels. Following your visit, you may opt to rejoin your coach and proceed directly back to the pier and ship, or remain a bit longer in the Old Town of Klaipeda, and find your own way back to the ship. Lunch includes a choice of two beverages: local beer, soda or water.

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  • Mansion, Church, and Monastery Tour

    Explore the beauty and tragedy of Lithuania past and present during visits to Kretinga's Church of the Annunciation, and the historic mansion and museum of Count Tiskevicius.

    Depart the pier for the drive to Kretinga, a quaint little town just 20 minutes north of Klaipeda. Upon arrival, you will visit the

    17th-century Church of the Annunciation. On the grounds surrounding the church lie the Stations of the Cross. You will visit the church, and explore the cellars below. The adjoining Franciscan monastery combines Renaissance and Baroque elements. The Franciscan friars, who lived in the monastery, made a great contribution to education in Lithuania. They opened the first school, and later began publishing books and newspapers. The Franciscan monastery was closed by the Tsarist government, and again later in Soviet times. After Lithuania's declaration of independence in 1992, the Franciscans returned again. Today, they look after the church, and hold heavily-attended services. One of the brothers will lead your tour of the church if they are not at prayer.

    Next, you will pass through the center of Kretinga en route to Count Tiskevicius' 19th-century estate. This historic mansion houses a museum displaying spiritual and cultural treasures of Kretinga. During your visit, you will see furniture, paintings and antiques belonging to the Count's family, and see how the local people lived in the beginning of the 19th century. You will also learn about a tragic period in Lithuania's history when thousands of people, including the Franciscan monks from the monastery, were deported to Siberia soon after the Soviet occupation in 1940. Today, the museum is also renowned for its beautiful winter garden, which showcases a wide variety of exotic plants from all over the world.

    Your visit concludes with light refreshments served in an elegant café nestled amidst the tropical plants, and adjacent to a waterfall. Afterward, you will rejoin your coach for the return drive to the pier and ship.

    Please note: This tour involves about a mile of walking, at times over uneven surfaces, and may not be suitable for guests with walking difficulties. Following your visit, you may opt to rejoin your coach and proceed directly back to the pier and ship, or remain a bit longer in the Old Town of Klaipeda, and find your own way back to the ship.

    Read More
  • Village Life in Lithuania

    Discover traditional village life in Lithuania during this scenic tour of the village of Lapiai, and visits to local homes in the valley.

    Depart the pier for the drive to the village of Lapiai, which is home to just 300 inhabitants, and located 18.5 miles to the east of Klaipeda. You will drive through the main street of the village, and pass by the houses and flats that were built during Soviet times to house workers of the collective farm. You will learn about daily life on the collective farm before, during and after Lithuania regained its independence in 1990. In recent years, younger generations of Lapiai have transformed farming into country tourism, which has become very popular amongst vacationers and nature lovers wishing to spend their leisure time in tranquility.

    Your tour continues on with a drive into a beautiful valley. Along the way, a stop will be made at the Village Cultural Center. In the valley below, you can observe people living a traditional lifestyle off the land, and still using old farming equipment.

    Your tour concludes with a visit to the home of a former British Defence Attache now residing in the village. You will have an opportunity to visit his refurbished old 1926 house and original outbuildings, wander around the large garden and view Lapiai Castle Hill. You will then be served drinks and light refreshments before it's time to travel back to the port.

    Please note: There is a moderate amount of walking on this tour that includes a variety of surfaces, including hard gravel, cobblestones and grass. The tour is not recommended for wheelchair guests. Weather appropriate clothing; sun cap; sunglasses; and flat, comfortable walking shoes are recommended. Following the guided portion of your tour, you may opt to rejoin your coach and proceed directly back to the pier and ship, or remain a bit longer in the Old Town of Klaipeda, and find your own way back to the ship.

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  • Fairy Tales & Legends of the Witches Hill and Amber Bay

    Klaipeda's world of fairy tales and legends awaits your arrival during this scenic visit to the Black Shore, and a stop at Witches Hill.

    Depart the pier for the brief drive through Klaipeda, then a 5-minute journey by ferry across the Curonian lagoon to the Curonian Spit, which captivates visitors with its unique natural beauty. From here, you will proceed to the Black Shore, or Juodkrante, the oldest fishing village on the Curonian Spit. Now a resort, it still retains its Old World charm. Upon arrival, you will see Amber Bay, a 19th-century amber-mining site, along with the quay of the lagoon, which is adorned by modern sculptures. You will also view the traditional fishermen's houses decorated with ornaments.

    The highlight of your visit to Juodkrante is Witches Hill, which features 80 sculptures carved from oak along the edge of a forest path. Here, you will observe the giant Neringa and Egle, the queen of grass-snakes, a dragon slain by the prince, the thunder, poacher and many witches performing their devilry. You will also hear some of the stories and legends related to them, and understand why Lithuania is renowned as Europe's last pagan state.

    Next, a visit will be made at the Evangelical Lutheran Church. Situated opposite the church is a gallery of weather vanes, in a separate building that will also be visited. In the 19th century, weather vanes were used as a special marking system on the top of the flat fishing boats, or kurenas. Later, weather vanes became particularly colorful and artistic symbols of the Curonian Spit.

    Your tour concludes with a stop to view the impressive nesting site of one of the largest cormorant and Grey heron colonies. Thousands of these birds arrive in March, then migrate south in August.

    Please note: This tour involves a significant amount of moderate to strenuous walking. The Hill of Witches requires navigating an uphill dirt track through a dense forest. The tour is not available to wheelchair guests or those with mobility concerns. Guests should be in good physical condition. Weather appropriate clothing; suncap; sunglasses; insect repellant; a bottle of water from the ship; and flat, athletic or hiking shoes with a non-slip sole are recommended. At the conclusion of your guided tour, you may opt to rejoin your coach and proceed directly back to the pier and ship, or remain a bit longer in the Old Town of Klaipeda, and find your own way back to the ship.

    Read More
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