Location
On the eastern shore of the Baltic Sea. The National Geographical Institute of France determined in 1989 that the geographical centre of Europe lies 24 km northwest of Vilnius.

Area
65,300 sq. km.

Climate
Maritime/continental. Average July temperature: +17.7°C; January: – 4.9°C.

Time
GMT + 2 hours. When it’s 12:00 in Vilnius, it’ll be 11:00 in Stockholm and Frankfurt, 10:00 in London and 05:00 in New York.

Capital
Vilnius.

Type of government
Parliamentary Republic.

Population
3,403,000.

Largest cities by population
Vilnius 553,200; Kaunas 373,700; Klaipėda 191,600; Šiauliai 132,700; Panevėžys 118,800.

Ethnic composition
Lithuanian 83.5%, Polish 6.7%, Russian 6.3%, Byelorussian 1.2%, others 2.3%. People of 115 different ethnic backgrounds live in Lithuania.

Religions
Predominantly Roman Catholic. There are also Russian Orthodox, Evangelical Lutherans, Evangelical Reformers, Russian Old Believers, Jews, Sunni Muslims, Karaites.

National currency
Litas (Lt). 3.4528 Lt = 1 EUR.

National holidays
January 1 – New Year’s Day
February 16 – Independence Day (1918)
March 11 – Restoration of Independence (1990)
Easter (Sunday and the following Monday)
May 1 – Labour Day
June 24 – St John’s, or Midsummer
July 6 – Coronation of Mindaugas, King of Lithuania
August 15 – Assumption Day
November 1 – All Saints’ Day
December 25-26 – Christmas