Once upon a time there was a King
named Mindaugas who lived in what’s today Vilnius. The king was born a heathen but converted later in his life to Christianity. As a result of this conversion a wooden Christian cathedral was built in 1251 at the foot of Gediminas hill. In 1387 when the whole of Lithuania converted to Christianity a gothic style cathedral was built to it. In this very cathedral coronation ceremonies and funerals of the Grand Dukes were taken place.
By good luck or providence this beautiful cathedral was to survive wars but yet several times rebuild so today it’s fortunately possible to pay it a visit.
When enter this magnificent piece of art one will be overwhelmed by the chapel of St Casimir an unique baroque chapel built in 1623-1636 by the King Sigismund Vasa. Among other things to be seen in the church are an 18th century goblet shaped pulpit and more than 40 artworks dating back to the 16th –19th centuries. For those who dare to enter the mysterious catacomb there is now a very interesting museum to be seen exposing the eventful history of this historical building from pagan times until today.
Just outside the church is the Cathedral’s famous bell tower. Its present appearance took place 1801 after it was reconstructed. The bell tower is outstanding in its style reaching almost 57 meters up in the sky and sure is a landmark here in Vilnius old town.