Riga, the capital of Latvia, is the largest city within the Baltics and something of an undiscovered gem. With extensive renovations currently mapping the city, Riga is turning into a hot-spot for tourists so we highly recommend visiting sooner than later. There is plenty to see and do and a unique culture to get immersed in and the international airport is conveniently nearby.
The River Daugava flows through the city, splitting it into two districts. For some, a walk along the serene river during the later hours is an ideal way to pass time in the evening. There is a tourist office which can be used to book tours or merely gain leaflets on what there is to see and do within the city so be sure to check this out.
The Old Town is an incredibly popular area with tourists and features some of the best sights in the city. St. Peter’s Church stands out with its immense structure and architecture and happens to be the oldest church in the city, having been built in the 13th century.
The Opera House is also here and, like most parts of the city, has had a lot of work done to it, accentuating the fact that Latvia admires its culture and Opera is just one of its many passions.
Cathedral Square is a prestigious area of the city and features, as you may have guessed, a number of cathedrals. Riga Cathedral is the big one and sits close to The Three Brothers, some of the oldest dwellings in the city.
The Freedom Monument is one of the most important and significant locations in Latvia, let alone Riga. The structure was completed upon the country’s first achieved independence and features a woman holding three stars at the very top of the monument, representing each of Latvia’s regions.
As mentioned, walking is popular but Riga is open to many more suggestions and this includes a genuine Bobsled track, Go-Karts, kayaking as well as a Russian Car Rally which takes you through the streets of Riga in a fun one-off event. If you want to really spend some intimate time with the city, consider a scenic flight across the city’s skyline. It will cost money but the scenes are worth it, particularly as the sun begins to set.
Those looking to shop won’t be disappointed as long as they stick to the markets (which are great during Christmas), and Central Market, near the train station, is a great place to purchase local produce, meat and fish with a scattering of quaint restaurants nearby too.
No matter how you choose to spend your time in Riga, you can be guaranteed a beautiful city with great feel.