Standing on a small hill in northern Lithuania close to the Latvian border are hundreds of thousands of crosses that represent Christian devotion and a memorial to Lithuanian national identity. The beginnings of this extraordinary hill are shrouded in mystery as no one is certain how or why this hill became a monument to Christ and to the Lithuanian nation. The size and array of these crosses is as amazing as the quantity of them. In addition to crosses, giant crucifixes, carvings of Lithuanian patriots, statues of the Virgin Mary and thousands of diminutive effigies and rosaries have been brought here on Catholic pilgrimages. Beautifully carved out of wood or sculpted from metal, the crosses range from 9 feet tall to countless tiny ones which are hung upon the larger crosses. The breeze that blows through the forest of crosses and hanging rosaries produces beautiful music on windy days.
This striking and eerie sight attracts both locals and tourists alike and many say that you haven’t really visited the country until you’ve seen it. Day tours to the Hill of Crosses are available from Vilnius.