Dzūkija (also known as Dainava) lies in south-eastern Lithuania - the woodiest region in the country. People have been growing buckwheat here for eons so they know how to use it to create delicious dishes. In the same area, situated in the land of forests, lies Dzūkija National Park (the largest protected area in Lithuania and the country's most extensive forest which joined the PAN Parks network of wilderness areas) where locals are unrivalled berry-gatherers and mushroom-pickers, and the region’s women are experts in preparing mushroom dishes.
The Buckwheat Festival takes place in Alytus each September. Organised by the Alytus Ethnography Museum, the event offers a unique chance for visitors to learn about new and unexpected possibilities when using and cooking buckwheat and to discover the Path of buckwheat, an educational program that teaches visitors about thrashing, grinding and sifting buckwheat.
Apart from the exhibitions, the Festival is an authentic culinary party. As people here have been growing buckwheat from a long time ago, they know how to make the most delicious cakes (locally called babkos) and many other dishes using buckwheat that will surprise visitors taste buds. There are also many other products that must be tasted, such as buckwheat honey or buckwheat blossom herbal tea.