Geographical Center of Europe
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Several countries claim to be at the heart of Europe, but according to the research of the French National Geographic Institute, the one and only geographical central point of the continent is in Lithuania, a fact that has even won recognition in the Guinness Book of World Records.
In 1989, a group of French scientists from the institute announced that the geographical centre of Europe was just to the north of the Lithuanian capital Vilnius – 26 kilometres to be exact – near the village of Purnuskes.
The map references of their version of the centre of Europe are
54 degrees, 54 minutes latitude and 25 degrees,
19 minutes longitude.
On 1 May 2004, the date Lithuania entered the European Union, the sculptor Gediminas Jokubonis unveiled at the site his composition of a column of white granite, the top of which is rimmed by a crown of stars. In this symbolic way, Lithuania’s historical links with Europe and the poignant return of Lithuania to the family of European nations was approved once more.
All Europeans are invited to visit the site of the geographical centre of Europe in Lithuania, at least once in their lives.