The Curonian Spit is an almost 100 km long narrow sand spit and barrier system separating the Curonian Lagoon from the Baltic Sea. The Sand spit is only 400 meters wide at the narrowest spot and a few kilometers at the widest. The northern part of the peninsula is located in Lithuania whilst the southern part is part of the Russian enclave Kaliningrad. The Curonian Spit is a UNESCO World Heritage Site shared by two countries.
Highest Sand Dunes in Europe
The Curonian Spit is known for its breathtaking views of the sand dunes against the backdrop of pine forests. The area is home for the highest moving sand dunes in Europe. The average height is around 30-35 meters however some of them exceeds incredible 60 meters. The peninsula offers beautiful natural habitat, surrounded by fresh air, pine trees and sandy beaches. From the viewpoints it looks like the Sahara except for the scattered pine forests. Most of the sand dunes are covered by dense pine forest. You may see wild boar and elk.
The site between the Baltic Sea and Curonian Lagoon means that you can be mercilessly blown away by the wind at the west coast, while on the other you can enjoy some warm sunbathing. The beaches are really nice and totally unspoiled.
The area is a popular day trip from Kaliningrad. However, please be aware of the road conditions in the area. The local roads are not the best. But still, it is recommended to hire a car and exploring the landscape both on the Russian and the Lithuanian side. Parts of the area is protected and declared as national park. Hence, it is not allowed to hike in some certain areas. Generally, hiking in the large sand dunes can highly be recommended.
Dune of Pilat France
The Tallest Sand Dune in Europe is Dune of Pilat in France with a stunning height of 110 meters however the sand dunes at Curonian Spit are the highest drifting sand dunes in Europe.