Wondering what to see in Lithuania? Looking for some ideas on day trips from Vilnius? Would you like to see some of the most beautiful landscapes in Lithuania while on your trip through the Baltics? Do you enjoy spending the day outside meeting the locals, petting soft alpacas, having a picnic in a pretty garden and learning a lot about traditional Lithuanian architecture and yarn-making? Oh, and some shopping, if you fancy?
If the answer is yes, then I have just a place for you. It is a little alpaca farm called Nemuno Alpakos (translated as “The Alpacas of Nemunas”). Let me tell you more about it and help you plan your alpaca farm visit.
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About the alpaca farm
The owners of the farm are Agniete and Mindaugas, a young couple, who with the support of their family take care of pretty much everything, from handling the alpacas, to making yarn, marketing products, the garden and in addition to that building a new house on the premises.
The small alpaca farm started with just 3 alpacas only 5 years ago, and now grew so much that you will meet over 20 of them there. The male and female alpacas are kept separately. If you are lucky, you will also have a chance to pet a baby alpaca. Actually, “baby alpaca” is not the right name, although a very cute – correctly, this are called alpaca cria.
What your visit will look like
The best idea is to contact Agniete and Mindaugas in advance, when you are planning your visit. They welcome guests most of the time, but there are sometimes alpaca shows or some other events taking place, and they might not be available. Of all the alpaca farms to visit in Lithuania, this is a relatively small, and therefore you have a chance to have a really individual experience.
You will start with “aaawwws” and even more “aaawwws” on seeing the alpacas for the first time. The first part of cuteness overload is very individual and can last anything from 10 minutes to half an hour. You will be given some alpaca food, so you can interest them to come closer to you. Alpacas are usually quite fearful of people they don’t know, so petting them can be a tricky excercise.
After you have used up your “awws” and taken a 100 alpaca photos, you can continue to the educational part of the tour. During it Agniete will tell you more about keeping alpacas and taking care of them, history, alpaca wool properties and making yarn the traditional Lithuanian way.
Not only you will hear about it, but also will see how it is made now (still the same way) and can even try spinning yourself.
If you are interested, you can also hear more about the historical village of Skirsnemune, the history of this region and the river of Nemunas, which used to separate Germany from Lithuania, and the castles nearby.
And now you probably got quite hungry? So the tour continues with some snacks. Do remember to discuss your food preferences beforehand, to get the best experience or just bring your own favourites for the picnic. And on a good day you can count on fresh harvest from the garden, whatever is in season, and even fresh eggs from the barn.
Finally, if you are interested in buying some alpaca products, you can also do some shopping. In Lithuanian we have a saying “prepare your sledge in summer”, and this is exactly what you can do here: just with some woolen socks, hats and gloves instead of a sledge. Did you know that alpaca wool and the yarn made of it pills less than cashmere and is hypoallergenic? Oh, and it is more environmentally friendly – at least this one at Nemuno Alpakos definitely is. After all you can trace the origins of your hat all the way to the alpaca, which gave the wool for it (and thank it personally).
The range of products will vary depending on the season and availability. Usually there is some alpaca yarn for sale as well as socks for children and adults, gloves, hats, jumpers and even alpaca wool duvets.
Location of Nemuno Alpakos
The farm is located two hour 15 mins drive from Vilnius or just over one hour from Kaunas. And this is actually a drive you will enjoy, as after Kaunas you will leave the motorway and continue on a scenic road along the river Nemunas. You will pass the castles of Panemune, river beaches, small towns of Raudondvaris and Vilkija, as well as several hills with excellent view points.
Allocate some time in your road trip for catching some sun at the beach, climbing the hill of Palemonas in the village of Seredzius and taking some photos of the Panemune Castle near the village of Skirsnemune – one of the biggest Lithuania tourist attractions.
The farm itself is located in the village of Skirsnemune, overseeing the river of Nemunas, so the alpacas can graze in those romantic surroundings. The road to the farm, combined with the proximity of this alpaca farm to many of Lithuania tourist spots and the warm atmosphere there make this destination one of the best Vilnius day trips or detours on your journey visiting the Baltic capitals.
Where to stay nearby
Try hotels in Vilnius or Kaunas, or a countryside stay in the region of Panemune.