Mushrom hunting festival in Varena Lithuania
Mushroom hunting festival in Varėna is a well known fest in Lithuania. Varėna itself is a small silent town in the South unofficially titled as a capital of mushroom hunters. The whole Varena region (Dzūkija land) is famous for wild mushrooms. Some sorts of Lithuanian mushrooms are exported to European countries.
The famous Varėna mushroom festival usually takes place in the end of September – at the very peak of Lithuanian mushrooms season. Mushroom festival attracts tourists from all over the world. Here you can explore Lithuanian cuisine dishes, participate at mushroom hunt, listen to local folk music, walk around colourful market and handcrafts bazaar. The whole day attraction is guaranteed! It is one of the best things to do in Lithuania.
Mushroom foraging in Lithuania
Holiday home “Dzūkijos uoga” organizes individual mushroom foraging activities for the groups of different sizes. It could be a small family with kids or mushroom hunting enthusiasts from 2 up to 18 people. What we offer:
♦ Cozy full board accommodation in modern villa at Dzūkija National Park Lithuania. Holiday villa is established in a tiny wooden village surrounded by pine tree forest and waterfront.
♦ Presentation about Lithuania’s mushrooms and the ways how to hunt for fungi in Dzūkija land ( South Lithuania);
♦ Mushroom foraging activities near the vacations villa: mushroom hunting with a local guide;
♦ Mushroom cooking on fire in the backyard of villa “Dzūkijos uoga” . It can be a well known mushroom soup or different fungi dishes from Lithuanian national cuisine. We can cook your own catch!
♦ Other active attractions: guided canoeing tours, sightseeing tours, Lithuanian national dishes cooking lessons or SPA in firewood heated banya ( sauna).
Mushroom hunting season and tips for Lithuania
When to hunt for mushrooms in Lithuania? Mushroom foraging season in Varėna region starts at the end of August . Depending on weather conditions it could last up to the end of October or even the beginning of November.
Usually we present the most of mushroom foraging do and don’ts for our guests. Here comes several of them:
♦ Never pick unknown mushrooms! Lithuania has a big variety of edible and poisonous fungus. The most popular edible mushrooms in Lithuania: different kinds of Boletus, Russula, Chanterelles, Butter-Mushrooms, Parasol Mushrooms, Saffron Milk Caps, Milk Agaric, Green Mushrooms and many more. Anyhow, besides the edible fungi there are a lot of extremely poisonous ones. We have even a Green Death-Cap ( Amanita phalloides ) which can kill you in a seconds. By the way, it has some similarities with a Green Russula!
♦ Make sure your smartphone is fully charged and local navigation is in. This is the only route guide or the way of communication in case you get lost.
♦ Don’t walk alone. It’s a good idea to go in a group or hire a local mushroom expert. South Lithuania is known for endless forests. You should have some experience to walk there. Having a local mushroom connoisseur by your side could be a great advantage for you!
Agenda of Varena mushroom festival
The exact date of Varėna Mushroom Festival could vary from year to year. But it always happens at the end of September – the peak of mushroom growth. Nowadays it could also be postponed due to COVID-19 restrictions. So you should check it before the arrival.
The typical order of Mushroom festival in Varėna – Lithuania:
♦ 07.00 – 10.00 Mushroom hunting championship (usually starts in Marcinkonys village near Varėna)
♦ 10.00 – Solemn welcome of mushroom hunters train from Vilnius at Varėna railway station
♦ 10.30 – Theatrical mushroom festival walk from Varėna railway station up to the central square.
♦ 11.00-17.00 – Lithuanian handcraft bazaar, folk music bands, Lithuanian cuisine dishes , mushroom hunting champions awards ceremony, different competitions and attractions all over Varėna town.
♦ 17.00- 22.00 – Concerts of local bands
♦ 22.00 – Fireworks
Mushroom hunting impressions from past
Previous Mushroom Festivals in Varėna attracted great crowds of local and foreign tourists. The festival was a target of different film making companies as well.
During the last years villa “Dzūkijos uoga” had groups of Japanese, German, UK, French, Polish and Irish mushroom experts and movie makers. They enjoyed our full board accommodation accomplished by inspiring outdoor activities in Lithuanian nature.
Besides the participation in mushroom foraging festival our villa guests took part in mushroom hunting themselves. Some of the catch was usually used to cook mushroom soup on fire. Our visitors were also happy to enjoy canoeing in Dzūkija National Park and relaxing in wood fired sauna (banya) leaded by other evening activities.
A big variety of different mushroom species were collected and characterized during the mushroom hunts. Once we had a “Mushroom stuff” mycologists meeting from Irish mushroom hunters community.
Feel free to contact us! Here you can fins some feedback about recreation in villa "Dzukijos uoga"
"Dzukijos uoga" – your nature accommodation for mushroom hunting attractions by Varėna Lithuania!
ASK US ABOUT MUSHROOM PICKING IN LITHUANIA!