Nida is a resort town in Lithuania, the administrative centre of Neringa municipality. Located on the Curonian Spit between the Curonian Lagoon and the Baltic Sea, it is the westernmost point of Lithuania and the Baltic states, close to the border with the Russian Kaliningrad Oblast exclave. It currently has about 1,650 residents.
We arrived to Nida just shortly we paid a visit to Juodkrante (both are located on Curonian Spit). One of my first observations about Nida were simple, it's some artists paradise or something - a lot of workshops. And later by reading on Wikipedia, turned out I was right.
Thomas Mann Summer house in Nida
In 1929 Nobel Prize-winning writer Thomas Mann visited Nida while on holiday in nearby Rauschen and decided to have a summer house erected on a hill above the lagoon; it was mocked by locals as Uncle Tom's Cabin (Onkel Toms Hütte). He and his family spent the summers of 1930–32 in the cottage, and parts of the epic novel Joseph and His Brothers (Joseph und seine Brüder) were written the
Lagoon at Nida
From the late 19th century, the dune landscape became popular with landscape and animal painters from the Kunstakademie Königsbergarts school. The local inn of Herman Blode was the nucleus of the expressionist artists' colony (Künstlerkolonie Nidden). Lovis Corinthsojourned there, as did Max Pechstein, Alfred Lichtwark, Karl Schmidt-Rottluff, and Alfred Partikel. Painters from Königsberg such as Julius Freymuth and Eduard Bischoff visited the area, as did poets such as Ernst Wiechert and Carl Zuckmayer. Other guests included Ernst Kirchner, Ernst Mollenhauer, Franz Domscheit, and Herrmann Wirth. The painters usually took accommodations at Blode's hotel, and left some of their works with him. Some also built their own residences in the vicinity.
After World War I Nidden, together with the northern half of the Curonian Spit (Kurische Nehrung), became part of the Klaipėda Region(Memelland) under terms of the 1919 Treaty of Versailles and was annexed by Lithuania in 1923. Officially renamed Nida, the village nevertheless remained a predominantly German settlement; the border with the remaining German (East Prussian) half of the spit lay only a few kilometers to the south.
Swedbank in Nida
In 1939 the town had 736 inhabitants. Nida became nearly uninhabited, like all of the Curonian Spit, as a result of the Red Armyadvance and the Evacuation of East Prussia at the end of World War II, and the eventual expulsion of surviving German inhabitants. The town was reassigned to Lithuania under border changes promulgated at the Potsdam Conference, and became part of the Lithuanian SFSR within the Soviet Union; since 1990 it has been part of independent Lithuania.
In the early postwar period, Nida was a little-visited fishing village. Later in Soviet times Nida, together with three other villages of the Neringa Municipality (Juodkrantė, Preila andPervalka), was a controlled-entry holiday region reserved for the Communist party officialdom (nomenklatura) and senior industry elite. Strict planning regulations, a ban on industrial development and generous municipal subsidies kept it unspoiled. Since independence, the area has been open to all, but the number of visitors is kept relatively low by the small number of hotel rooms (new developments usually are permitted only on old buildings' foundations) and comparatively high rents.
The town is an upmarket holiday resort, hosting about 200,000 to 300,000 tourists each summer, mostly Lithuanians, Germans, Latvians, and Russians. It is characterized by low-key entertainment and a distinct family focus. However, during recent years it become a decent point of interest for fine electronica music and modern art shows at an eclectic forest retreat.
Nida also has a seaport which is used for ferries and fishing boats.