The tiny spa town of Birštonas was first mentioned by the Teutonic Knights in a 1382 chronicle as a farmstead with salty water, and was soon gaining popularity with the Lithuanian Grand Dukes as a hunting retreat. Receiving Magdeburg Rights in 1529, it took a further three centuries until it became a fully fledged resort town, when in 1846 a combination of its peaceful surroundings and the curative effects of the local water and mud attracted a wealth of prosperous Russians, Poles and Lithuanians. Lounging inside a loop on the banks of the mighty Nemunas river, Birštonas also boasts some glorious nearby nature, bursting with gorgeous pine forests and alive with nature. Playing second fiddle to the larger resort of Druskininkai, Birštonas came into its own during the inter-war period when its big brother found itself in Polish territory. Currently reinventing itself as the ultimate Lithuanian destination for mind, body and spirit and offering the occasional cultural treat into the bargain, lovely, sleepy Birštonas has just the right amount of distractions to keep everybody happy throughout the year.