British merchants managed to obtain the right to construct a port and a settlement and to excavate canals in Šventoji. The town was referred to by the name of Janmarienburg in various sources. It was granted the Magdeburg rights and a coat of arms. That year, two ships were reported to have reached the port of Šventoji and 20 more were on their way.
The successful port construction was interrupted by the Winter War that broke out between Russia and Sweden over the Baltic Sea and the lands bordering it. That year, Swedish naval forces blocked the entrance into the port of Šventoji by filling it with stones.
Stanislovas Pilsudskis, landlord of Samogitia, explored the remnants of the port of Šventoji during a field survey and prepared a project for restoring it. Unfortunately, it took several centuries to restore it completely. The trades pursued by local residents remained unchanged during that period. However, a tradition emerged in written sources of referring to the town or its northern part as the “Port”.
In the period between 1923 and 1925, a 3-stage project was approved for constructing a fishing port. It involved the construction of a 380-meter-long Southern Mole and a 228-meter-long Northern Mole with the gates 60 meters in width as well as the construction of quays. According to the estimates, local fishermen caught up to 300 tons of fish per year during that period.
In 1939–1940, the third stage of the port construction work was launched: the Southern Mole was extended to 780 meters and reached the depth of 7.5 meters. Internal catchment areas with a depth of 6 meters were constructed. The period also saw the beginning of the construction of the naval port of Šventoji. In March 1939, this location became a base for the training warship Prezidentas Smetona.
The main navigation symbol of the port, Šventoji Lighthouse, was built 780 meters offshore, 42 meters above the sea level. The visibility of the lighthouse reaches 31 km, and its tower affords a striking panoramic views across the Baltic Sea.
Situated on a small island surrounded by the sea and sand dunes, the Gates of Šventoji offers you the opportunity to rediscover coastal life and harmonious coexistence with nature. Large panoramic windows afford breath-taking seafront views, and the nearby pier is coming back to life as a vibrant communal space.