Average costs in Siauliai
Stay – Siauliai is quite small and consequently there aren’t that many possibilities to stay overnight. Fortunately, Lithuania is very cheap and you pay only €60 for a four-star hotel! Three stars costs between €40 and €45.
A budget single room costs you €15 and you can rent a spacious apartment from €25.
A complete overview can be found on this page.
I wouldn’t recommend staying in Šiauliai as there is really not much to see. If you’re passing through Lithuania, it’s of course not a bad idea.
Eat – Eating in Siauliai is ridiculously cheap! I entered a pastry shop, ordered a small cake, some more cake, a whole bag full of small biscuits and pastries and a fruity tea and I paid… €1.80!
From €5 you can already order a main course in a restaurant. Drinks cost between 80 cents and two euros and you can get a beer from €2.50.
Transport – If you go to Siauliai from Vilnius for a day trip, you pay €9 for a train ticket. You’re on the train for about two hours.
The buses in Šiauliai itself cost around €0.80 per ride.
Saving money in Siauliai
Plan your day trip on your own – The hill of crosses is one of the most popular excursions in Lithuania. If you have enough time, I advise you to plan your trip yourself. From Vilnius and Kaunas there are a few trains a day that head to Siauliai. From the bus station in Siauliai, you have to take the bus and walk about two kilometers (bit more than a mile) before you see the hill with the crosses. From Vilnius a single train ticket costs between €9 and €11. The bus will cost you €1.60 to go and return. So for about 21.60 euros you can plan an excursion yourself. Tour organizations ask about €45 per person. Of course a tour organization is more comfortable and easier because I often had to wait a long time because of the bad connections…
Exploring the city on foot – If you want to see the city center of Siauliai, I advise you to do so on foot. It’s very small and a bus isn’t really necessary. Moreover, walking is a better idea than hoppinh on a bus, as some streets are forbidden for vehicles.
Things to do in Siauliai
Hill of the crosses – The hill of the crosses or the Kryžių kalnas is a must see if you’re in Lithuania! It once started as a small pilgrimage site with a few dozen of crosses, but in the meantime there are already more than a hundred thousand! A whole hill is filled with small and large specimens and creates a spectacular view to say the least. You can walk through the two small hills at your leisure and perhaps even hang or place an extra cross on the hill.
Photos of my visit to Siauliai can be found here and more info about this unique spot can be read on my blog.
St. George church – A beautiful orthodox church near the train station is the St. George church. From the outside the beautiful building has an impressive dome. Inside it’s less spectacular, but that is usually the case with orthodox churches.
The Cathedral of the Apostles Peter and Paul – Another church that you should definitely see when you are in Siauliai. This seventeenth century church is decorated in a beautiful renaissance style and inside it is all snow white.
Avoid in Siauliai
Long stay – In addition to the hill of crosses and some beautiful churches in the center there is really nothing to see in Siauliai. So you really don’t have to stay longer than one or half a day. Since Siauliai isn’t far from the Latvian border, you can of course stay here and cross the border once you’ve explored the city.
Getting annoyed by the bad infrastructure – The hill of crosses is very popular with many tourists, but to get there you have to plan a lot in advance… The trains and buses are very irregular and the excursions are very limited and quickly fully booked. So plan ahead!