Klaipeda's history dates back to 1252, when it was founded as a fortress to provide protection against marauders arriving by sea. A member of the Hanseatic League during its heyday, Klaipeda was also ruled at various times by Sweden, Russia, Prussia, Lithuania, Germany, the Soviet Union, and now, once again, Lithuania. With a population of nearly 200,000, Klaipeda is one of Lithuania's largest cities and most important ports. Be sure to visit Mazvydas Sculpture Park or perhaps make the drive to nearby Palanga or Nida along the Baltic coast. Special Note: Please bear in mind that tourism in Lithuania is still in its infancy. Facilities and guides may not be up to Seabourn's normally high standards.