Mažeikiai district is located in north - west Lithuania, near the River Venta. The territory is a periphery of two Baltic nations- Lithuanians and Latvians. In the north Mažeikiai district borders on the Republic of Latvia, in the east – on Akmenė district, in the south – east on Telšiai district, in the south – west on Plungė district, and in the west on Skuodas district.
The historian A. Nikžentaitis confirmed that Mažeikiai was founded by the Duke of Žemaičiai Mažeika. This name was mentioned in 1290. The historical sources from the beginning of the 14th century tell about the Manor of Mažeikiai. The village of Mažeikiai was mentioned in the 16th century. In the 20th century the town grew rapidly and it was referred to as “the town of the future”. This turned out to be true.
Here one can find vast forests and fertile farming plains with the Venta river and its tributaries winding through them. There are twelve mounds of different sizes. The most important mounds are: Dapšiai, Daubariai, Griežė, Rimoliai, Jautakiai, Vadagiai and Leckava. The Samogitians simply refer to them as “hills” which remind us of the ancient tribes of Kuršiai and Žiemgaliai who lived there a long time ago.
The old ages have left the unique relics of the Raganų, Kartuvių, Būgnų hills, the valley of Milda, and the biggest stone in Geidžiai which is simply called a “hut”. One pagan altar and several old burial grounds have also remained. The village of Grūstė is still steeped in legends as well as the small towns of Seda, Židikai, Tirkšliai, Laižuva, Renavas. The latter, in a wonderful cosy nook, is also called the Switzerland of Žemaitija. This area is known for its wonderful forests, its mound and the biggest fir tree in Lithuania.
The area during the 19th century was famous for the manor of the Rion Barons and today it is the side of a fine arts museum where one can hear verses, the sounds of noble music, and ancient mysterious stories. There is also another historic manor in Mažeikiai district near the village of Plinkšės. Here one is always moved by the wonderful scene of the lake with its secret stories, legends and songs by Earl Konstantin Pliater. Past memories are still alive in the mind of the people living in Plinkšiai and the spiritual culture remains in their folklore. It is remarkable that the folk traditions continue to be practised by those with a “Rimoliai” heritage in the small town of Seda. The Easter rituals of Žemaitija in Pievėnai are considered to be one of the oldest and most archaic and are treated as worldwide unique.
Nowadays Mažeikiai district continues its old cultural traditions. The cultural heritage is a valuable relic of the past, a witness of historical development. The district makes boast of masterpieces of wooden baroque churches, S. Gailevičius’ stone monuments and other historical and art monuments.