Just off the main street in Juodkrante, Lithuania, the forest is alive with a vast array of fairytale creatures, crow-monsters, devils, and saxophonists. Known as the Hill of Witches, this public trail through the woods takes visitors on a trip through the most well-known legends and stories in Lithuanian folk history.
Work began in 1979 on the sculpture park, and it now features 80 different wooden carvings from local artists. Painstakingly hand-crafted, each sculpture depicts a popular character from folk and pagan traditions in the Juodkrante. The public park got its name long before the sculptures were placed along the wooded trails, and is in fact a reference to the pagan celebrations that take place on the hill during the Midsummer’s Eve Festival.
Each year on June 24, people across Lithuania dance, sing, and bring in the midsummer with the older folk traditions of the country. After Christianity came to Lithuania, the celebration was renamed Saint Jonas’ Festival, but many of the practices still have pagan roots, as is echoed by the fantastic world of the Hill of Witches sculptures.
Know Before You Go
The trail is accessible from the main street of Juodkrante. Admission is free. Be on the lookout for new sculptures, as they're often added.