There is a reason why the palace website claims it is the Heart of Vilnius Museum. It is the birthplace of the city. It is precisely here that a wooden settlement existed in the IV-VIII century, part of which was turned into a stone castle in the XIII c. There were no princesses, locked up in towers, or dragons to be found here, however, it was home to almost all rulers of Lithuania. The castle grew bigger and more beautiful, and while it bore gothic characteristics at first, in the XV c. it was developed into a luxurious Renaissance palace. Unfortunately, the Moscow army of the XVII c. devastat-ed the site and, in the XIX c., destroyed it completely. Alongside the vanishing state, vanished, too, the rulers’ palace of the time. It was not rebuilt until 2009. Now you will find a functioning National Museum- Palace of the Grand Dukes of Lithuania. Which means you will get to feel like noblemen yourself during a visit! Strolling around the halls you will get to see carefully preserved ancient dishes, clothes and details of interior, and learn about how the elite of the day celebrated events, what they ate and even how they bathed. You are welcome to not only drop in on its permanent expositions and exhibitions, but also attend concerts, events, music and film festivals. And so, the palace that has spent many years in the void, has once again become the centre of attraction. Another Vilnius site, that has been given a second life, is Užupis- found in 1300 steps.