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Transport & Accommodation

  • Return flights to Vilnius with Ryanair
  • One piece of 20kg check in luggage and small hand bag per person (non priority boarding)
  • Transfer on arrival from the airport to your hotel in Vilnius
  • Four nights in the 3 star Ibis Vilnius City Centre Hotel
  • Breakfast served each morning in the Ibis Vilnius City Centre Hotel
  • Two nights in the 4 star Best Western Santaka Hotel in Kaunas
  • Breakfast served each morning at the Best Western Santaka Hotel in Kaunas
  • One night in the 4 star Saulys Hotel in Siauliai
  • Breakfast served each morning Saulys Hotel
  • Six evening meals
  • Entrance fees to the Vilnius University, Trakai Castle and Pazaislis Monastery
  • Luxury air-conditioned coach for all transfers and tours
  • Transfer back to Vilnius airport for return flight

Tours & Religious Programme

  • Full assistance of Joe Walsh Tours English speaking guides and representatives for all excursions & tours
  • Full spiritual programme including Daily Masses

Detailed Itinerary

  • Day 1: Thursday 12 September
    We depart Dublin at 17.30hrs on our flight to Vilnius. On arrival in Vilnius airport, we will be met by our Joe Walsh Tours Pilgrimage co-ordinator and our coach. We will continue to our hotel the 3 star Ibis Vilnius City Centre, where we will stay for the next four nights with breakfast served each morning.

  • Day 2: Friday 13 September
    We celebrate our opening Mass this morning. Today we follow the Way of Mercy, visiting places associated with Saint Faustina and her spiritual director Blessed Fr. Michael Sopoćko. Sr. Faustina Kowalska proclaimed a Saint in 2000, lived in Vilnius in 1929 and then again from 1933 to 1936. Here she received her revelations and visions of Our Lord and met Fr. Sopoćko who encouraged her to write a diary, arranged for the Image of Divine Mercy to be painted and began devotion to Divine Mercy. We visit the Shrine of Divine Mercy and venerate the original image of Divine Mercy. We continue to the House of Sr. Faustina. While living here, St. Faustina received several visions of Jesus and received the Chaplet of Divine Mercy in 1935. The wooden building of the former convent remained standing, as if by miracle, amidst the ruins from World War II and later Soviet-built apartment blocks. Our next stop will be the Convent of the Sisters of Merciful Jesus (former Visitation Convent), where Fr. Sopoćko lived from 1932 to 1934, as well as painter Eugene Kazimirowski, who painted the image of Merciful Jesus according to the visions of St. Faustina. The image was created right here at this Convent. Evening meal will be served in a local restaurant in Vilnius.

  • Day 3: Saturday 14 September
    We will celebrate Mass this morning. After breakfast we will take a stroll through the winding streets of Vilnius’s Old Town. We will visit Užupis Republic, a quirky mecca of Vilnius’ artists. We see some of the main sights including the landmark bronze statue of the Angel of Užupis and the plaque with Užupis residents’ Constitution. We also visit Vilnius University, founded by the Jesuits in 1579 and St. Peter and Paul’s Church to see seventeenth century Lithuanian Baroque architecture and to witness its awe-inspiring interior. We also visit the Church of St. Michael (the Church Heritage Museum), the Church of St. Anne and the Bernardine Church of St. Francis of Assisi. Evening meal and overnight in Vilnius.

  • Day 4: Sunday 15 September
    Mass today. Following breakfast today we will visit the town of Trakai. Trakai, set by a picturesque lakeside, this medieval capital is one of the country’s most popular attractions, famous for its Gothic Castle set on an island. We also visit the Church of the Visitation of the Blessed Virgin Mary, known for its painting of the Virgin Mary and child, the oldest image of the Mother of God in Lithuania. Going back to Vilnius Old Town we will visit St. Peter and Paul's Church, famous for its superb interior. Evening meal and overnight Vilnius.

  • Day 5: Monday 16 September
    We will celebrate Mass. Today we depart Vilnius for Kaunas and we follow St John Paul II’s route. On the way we will visit the cities of Pivasiunai and Marijampole. Our first stop is Pivasiunai, a small village which has long been known not only for its natural beauty, but also for its church of the Mother of God and Child. After lunch we continue to Marijampole, a city, located on the banks of the Sesupe River. In the mid 18th century the Marian fathers built a monastery whose name, Marijampole, thereafter was also applied to the village established in the place some 200 years earlier.
    We continue to Kaunas and check in to our hotel the Best Western Santaka Hotel, where we will stay for the next two nights. Evening meal and overnight Kaurnas

  • Day 6: Tuesday 17 September
    Following breakfast today we will explore the city of Kaunas, the second largest city and the capital of Lithuania between the World Wars. We will celebrate Mass in Kaunas today. We will see the thirteenth century Castle, the Town Hall Square and the Jesuit Church. The Cathedral Basilica of St Peter and Paul, one of Lithuania’s oldest and largest sanctuaries and the country’s only gothic basilica, is home to the renowned painting of Our Lady of Sorrows as well as the image of Mary the Most Gracious Mother. In the afternoon we visit the Church of the Visitation of the Blessed Virgin Mary with its monastery, located outside Kaunas. Return to Kaunas for evening meal and overnight Kaunas.

  • Day 7: Wednesday 18 September
    We depart Kaunas today for Siluva, the most important pilgrimage site in Lithuania. This is where the Blessed Virgin Mary appeared 400 years ago in one of Europe’s first Marian apparitions. We visit the chapel of the Apparition of Our Lady of Siluva, which stands at the exact place Our Lady appeared. We will celebrate Mass in Siluva. In the afternoon we travel to Tytuvai to visit its monastery and church, Lithuania’s largest and most significant structures of 17th and 18th century sacred architecture. We continue to Siailiai and check into the Saulys Hotel where we will stay for one night. Evening meal and overnight Siauliai.

  • Day 8: Thursday 19 September
    We celebrate our final Mass of the pilgrimage today. This morning we visit the Cathedral of the Apostles Saints Peter and Paul and we then continue to the Hill of Crosses. The Hill of Crosses is unique both for its size and its history. At present some 200,000 crosses of various sizes adorn the hill. In erecting crosses here, people manifested their devotion to Christ, prayed for his help and marked Lithuania as a Christian land. It gained immense significance in the lives of Lithuanian Catholics during the Soviet era as a place of anonymous yet remarkable persevering resistance to the totalitarian regime. After independence was regained, the hill quickly became a symbol of the nation’s unshakeable faith, of its past suffering and its hope. Pope John Paul II visited and celebrated Mass here in 1993 and a cross that he donated was erected here in 1994. We continue then to Samogitian Calvary, to visit its Way of the Cross. 20 stations were created here in 1639. We continue then to Vilnius airport for our evening flight back to Dublin

Notes

  • Price per person sharing twin/double rooms with private facilities. Single rooms are limited and subject to a supplement of €210 for the tour
  • To book we require a non refundable deposit of €200 per person, completed booking form and first and surname as it appears on passport. Please also advise us of passport number, expiry date, nationality and date of birth so we can issue boarding passes for the group prior to travel.
  • Prices are inclusive of airline taxes and charges totalling €90 per person
  • Group pilgrimage cover is included up to 85 years of age (terms & conditions apply).
  • A buy on board catering system is available on flights
  • Itinerary and flight details may be subject to change; E&OE