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Grutas Park

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Grutas Park in Lithuania has been considered one of the main tourist objects of the country for the last five years. It is also called “the park of totalitarianism”. Lots of monuments which were placed in different parts of Lithuania, when it was a part of the USSR, are gathered there.

Grutas Park was opened in the place called Grutas five km away from Druskininkie on the territory of the national Dzukia Park. Five years later it became as popular as the famous sanatoriums of the main spa resort of the country. Grutas Park was founded by a Lithuanian citizen, an eccentric millionaire Vilumas Malinauskas, who decided to create a communist reservation on the territory of his country. When Lithuania became independent in 1990 all the monuments belonging to the Soviet epoch were dismantled. Eight years later the Lithuanian government did not still make a decision what to do with all those monuments and offered to win a tender in order to have the rights to organize a special exposition of them. Mr Malinauskas became a winner because he financed the creation of the park with his own money.

Grutas Park is a sort of “totalitarian Disneyland”. It is enclosed with barbed wire, with the watching towers in the corners. The design of the park reminds us of a badlu known system of Soviet concentration camps (GULAG). There are about 100 different monuments in Grutas Park nowadays, which are devoted to the main characters of the Soviet epoch: Lenin, Stalin, Dzerzhinsky, Marx.

The park is divided into two zones: the totalitarian zone and the zone of terror. There are statues of the Leaders in the first one and the statues of the organizators of genocide in Lithuania in the second one. Some of the statues were brought by Mr Malinauskas from the Lithuanian metal-working plants.

Besides the statues there is a playing ground for children, a small zoo with ostriches and peacocks on the territory of Grutas park. There is a café there as well, where tourists can order the most popular dishes of the Soviet period, such as vodka and herring, borsch and cutlets.


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