Latvia Things to Do

  • Old Town
    by littlebush
  • Old Town
    by littlebush
  • Old Town
    by littlebush

Latvia Things to Do

  • Old Town

    Riga Things to Do

    Historically Riga's Town Hall Square was the city's administrative centre where, obviously, its Town Hall was located. The square was used for markets, local events and public executions. It was pretty much destroyed by German bombing during World War II and what was left behind afterwards was demolished by the Soviets after they had retaken the...

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  • Freedom Monument

    4.5 out of 5 stars

    Riga Things to Do

    The Freedom Monument is a memorial honouring soldiers killed during the Latvian War of Independence (1918–1920). It is considered an important symbol of the freedom, independence, and sovereignty of Latvia. Unveiled in 1935, the 42-metre high monument of granite, travertine, and copper often serves as the focal point of public gatherings and...

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  • St Peters Church

    Riga Things to Do

    St Peters Church in Riga is a must see, not only the church, but the panoramic view from the tower is fantastic. You can virtually see most of Riga. There is a lift to get up and down the tower (thank god,) which does make life a lot easier Please click link for photo's taken from the tower Working hours Tuesday - Saturday from 10.00 to 18.00,...

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  • Central Market

    4.5 out of 5 stars

    Riga Things to Do

    Riga's Central Market was the only thing I'd actually planned to do during my couple of days. A city's markets, to my mind, tell a far better story of the place, and its people, than the guidebooks and the guided tours can ever do. I certainly wasn't disappointed with this one. The buildings have a unique architecture, having been converted from...

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  • Art Nouveau Buildings

    Riga Things to Do

    Riga is famous for its large number of well-preserved (or more often, well-restored) Art Nouveau buildings. These are dotted across the city, but there is a particular concentration of them in one area on and around Elizabetes and Alberta streets. We spent part of a morning strolling these streets and could easily have spent longer. Art Nouveau,...

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  • House of Blackheads

    4 out of 5 stars

    Riga Things to Do

    This beautiful building stands on the main square in Riga's old town. It was used by bachelor members of the blackheads merchant guild. The original building was completed in 1344. Over the centuries it was expanded and embellished. However, it was completely destroyed in the bombings of 1941. The building was completely rebuilt and was finally...

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  • Daugava River

    Riga Things to Do

    This is something I did fancy doing but unfortunately it didn't fit into my plans, or lack thereof, during my short visit. The river cruises, during the day, offer a one-hour trip along the city's waterfront, taking in the panoramas of both Old and new Riga. During the season the river boats also offer a two-and-a-half hour sunset trip out to the...

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  • Academy of Sciences

    Riga Things to Do

    Riga like many former Communist countries has removed lots of traces of its Soviet past. The Academy of Sciences Building survived. Locals nickname it Stalin's Wedding Cake. I rather liked it myself. There are still some hammer and sickle emblems on it. The building is 65 metres high. There is an observation deck on the 17th-floor. This is open in...

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  • Museum of the Occupation of Latvia

    4.5 out of 5 stars

    Riga Things to Do

    This museum is a little sobering and confronting as you see first hand what life was like for Latvians during the occupation. It is certainly a good and interesting museum to visit, This is private museum, not run or administered by the state. Well worth a visit if you are interested in history.

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  • Three Brothers

    Riga Things to Do

    The Three Brothers refers to three houses that are next to each other, but each one comes from a different architectural period and style. These three houses are the oldest stone houses in Riga. The oldest house is N°17. This house dates back to the 15th century. The other two date from the 17th and 18th centuries.

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  • Riga Cathedral

    Riga Things to Do

    The Riga Cathedral is one of the most recognizable landmarks in Latvia, Construction was started in 1211, and the cathedral is considered one of the largest medieval churches in the Baltic area. The Riga cathedral possesses a magnificent organ, which our group was very lucky to hear in a private recital. There are also some magnificent stained...

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  • Powder Tower

    Riga Things to Do

    Like so many of Riga's apparently historic buildings, this is a reconstruction, but one carried out not after (and as a result of) World War Two, but before that, in 1937. It was originally a part of the defensive system of the town and as the name suggests, was used to store gunpowder. It dates originally from the beginning of the 14th century,...

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  • Cathedral of the Nativity of Christ -...

    Riga Things to Do

    When it was completed in 1883 Riga's Orthodox Cathedral was the largest Orthodox church in the Baltics. It was built under the instructions of Tsar Alexander II who gifted it with its set of 12 bells. During the First World War the occupying Germans converted it into a Lutheran church and after Latvian independence it once again became an Orthodox...

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  • Musicians of Bremen Monument

    Riga Things to Do

    The Town Musicians of Bremen is a statue that stands behind St Peter’s Church. The statue is a gift to Riga from the German city of Bremen. There has been links between the two cities for a long time. Already in the 12th century there were trade between the two cities. The theme of the statue is based on a fairytale written by the Grimm brothers....

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  • Cat House

    3.5 out of 5 stars

    Riga Things to Do

    As a major cat lover, I really wanted to see this house. It is called the cat house because there are two statues of angry black cats on the roof of the house. It is located at Meistaru10/12. Legend states that the owner of the house was a wealthy merchant who wanted to join the Great Guild opposite his home. At that time the guild was controlled...

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  • Latvian Riflemen Monument

    Riga Things to Do

    In the Ratslaukums near the Museum of the Occupation is this very solid-looking, brutalist-style granite monument dedicated to the Latvian Riflemen. The Latvian Rifles was a division of the Soviet Army formed during the First World War to try to repel the advances of the German Army. After German occupation of Latvia they fought in the Russian...

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  • National Opera

    4.5 out of 5 stars

    Riga Things to Do

    The statue of George Armitstead, his wife and a dog are located near Latvian National Opera. He was the mayor of Riga from 1901 to 1912. In 2006, Queen Elizabeth II unveiled a statue of him while on tour in Latvia, in the presence of his great grandson. (Wikipedia).

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  • Latvian Ethnographic Open Air Museum

    4.5 out of 5 stars

    Riga Things to Do

    ......make it to this lovely, forested place. You could take a picnic if the weather's good, although there's an original inn which serves beer, coffee, soft drinks etc and food (grey peas, cake etc etc). The inn is at the entrance though, and the museum is very extensive..... To get there, take bus 1 to 'Brivdabas Muzejs' (Riga's buses all have...

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  • Bastejkalns Park

    Riga Things to Do

    Riga's semi-circular canal, which loops the Old City, was part of its historic fortifications with the River Daugava completing the city's encirclement. In 1857, whilst part of the Russian Empire, the eastward-facing defensive embankments were deemed redundant and the former moat redesigned as a city park. On an early summer evening, with the sun...

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  • Swedish Gate

    Riga Things to Do

    The Swedish Gate (or Zviedru vārti in Latvian) is the sole surviving gate of Riga’s old city wall. It was built by ruling Swedes in 1698. One legend suggests that the building was owned by a rich (and rather mean) merchant. He cut through his property to create this gate, thereby avoiding having to pay tax every time he took the goods into...

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  • St Johns Church

    Riga Things to Do

    The first church on this site was built in 1234 for the Dominicans, but when it became too small it was expanded in 1330. It has since than been added to several times and the architecture and art is a mix of Gothic, Renaissance and Baroque styles If you look up on the façade, facing St Peter’s Church, you can see two small stone faces, which are...

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  • Jurmala Beach

    Riga Things to Do

    If you fancy something of a change from the city, then I can very well recommend a visit to the water park at Jurmala. It must be a good 20 miles out of town, but you can get there very quickly and cheaply by utilising the shared minibus system (see transport tip). It's certainly not cheap at 11 lat for a four-hour visit, but it is simply one of...

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  • Great and Small Guild

    Riga Things to Do

    Located next to each other in Riga, is the Small and Great Guild Halls, both impressive buildings. The Great Guild [1354], was a Merchant's organization for German merchants. The first building from the 14th century is no longer standing, instead a newer English Gothic building from 1857 is standing in its place. It is now used by the Latvian...

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  • Riga Castle - Rigas Pils

    Riga Things to Do

    What a sad Monument I found in the Palace Garden & Park located near Riga Castle. There are two important landmarks located here. Little remains of the first landmark located in the southern section of the park. It was where the Russians built Victory monument to celebrate their victory in the War of 1812 against Napoleon. The second landmark is...

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  • Bastion Hill

    4 out of 5 stars

    Riga Things to Do

    The Bastion Hill (Park) located near the Old Town and Freedom monument. It is nice park to stroll along after sightseeing the Old Town of Riga. Great spot to meander along the canal and see flower beds or just sit and relax on many of the benches located at the park. I think the photos will manifest itself. A memorial stones were placed at the park...

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  • Laima Clock

    Riga Things to Do

    Hard to say for me why Laima clock is famous in Riga, but anyway it was nice to see how it looks. This clock was donated by Laima chocolate manufacturer, and the main thing people like it as it is famous meeting place in Riga centre, near Freedom monument. This clock was built in first half of 20th century.

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  • Personal Observations

    Riga Things to Do

    CAUTION TO BARS & WOMEN pay attention in the area of the "Freedom Monument" by night: - LIVU laukums(square) ; - KALKU iela(street), especially number 22; There are places where often WOMEN APPROACH you quite easily in the street (or inside the bar) and propose you to drink. Those bars are ruled by organized crime, the will eventually try to: -...

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  • Town Hall

    Riga Things to Do

    Riga’s Town Hall dominates one side of the square that bears its name, the Ratslaukums or Town Hall Square. It looks pretty old but is actually an early 21st century copy of the 17th century neo-classical original which was completely destroyed in the Second World War. The facade is decorated with the emblem of the city and has a statue of Themis,...

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  • Moscow District

    Riga Things to Do

    One morning in Riga Isabel and I took the number 7 tram (from opposite the Opera House) to the to-us fascinating district of Latgale, more usually known as Maskavas forštate or the Moscow District. This is a traditional working class area with a mixed population (Russian, Latvian, Jewish and more). The architecture is a mix of faded Art Nouveau...

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  • Roland Statue

    Riga Things to Do

    The statue of Roland is located in front the House of Blackheads in the Town Square. It was erected in 1896 in honor of Charlemagne's nephew, Roland and to symbolize of free medieval cities of the Hanseatic League. Again like the House of Blackheads the statue is a copy of the original.

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  • Riga Motor Museum

    Riga Things to Do

    You will find a lot of pre war cars from Germany (Mercedes, BMW, Horch, Opel and others) the United States (Packard, Buik. ..), Russia (ZiS, ZiL, Wolga...), a Rolls wrecked by Breshniev ond others as well as trucks army vehicles (a Volkswagen amphibius car, a NSU motorcycle tank....) old bikes and bicycles. It is quite far fromthe enter. Get there...

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  • Konventa Seta - Convent Yard

    Riga Things to Do

    This little courtyard is part of the Konventa Seta hotel complex, between the hotel's accommodation block and its restaurant. It handily connects the main street of Kaleju iela and St Peters Church. Although owned by the hotel it is a public thoroughfare and has a couple of interesting, upmarket, arts and crafts shops. There is also a small...

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  • Livu Laukums - Livu Square

    Riga Things to Do

    This unevenly shaped "square" was one of the first places in Riga that I explored, heading here on the hot afternoon of my arrival in search of refreshment and a place where I could begin to sink into the atmosphere of the city and fell myself properly on holiday. I bought an iced coffee from a kiosk and settled at a table in the shade to watch...

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  • St Jacobs - St James - Church

    Riga Things to Do

    Another Catholic cathedral in this ethnically and religiously mixed city, but despite this it is famous for being the first church to preach the reformation and the first to accept Lutheran services. Today it retains its Catholic status, and is the seat of the Arch-Bishop of the Latvian Catholic Church.

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  • Out Of Town

    Riga Things to Do

    Latvians love their rye dark bread and LACI has been baking breads since 1993. To bake Laci bread, the skills of masters are used. Our wonderful VT organizer, Rita (Ritaz) arranged the LACI BAKERY TOUR and we all had a ball for sure. The tour started off with a film about "Laci", then we put on our hats, coveralls and shoe covers, before we...

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  • Walking

    Riga Things to Do

    The centre of Riga next to the Old Town attracts with its spacious parks. In spring, when the leaves open, they have a unique bouquet of scents.In summer the parks are a good place to hide from the heat. In autumn the parks turn into an incredible mixture of colours, while the heaps of snow in winter will please children. Latvian National Opera is...

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  • Kronvalda Park

    Riga Things to Do

    Another of Riga's central green spaces is the Kronvalda Park to the north of the Old City. This is another park which was built following the 1860's dismantling of the city's defensive perimeter with the city canal flowing through it. Here you'll find the Riga Congress Centre, which is one of the main concert venues, and all sorts of interesting...

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  • Latvian National Museum of Art

    Riga Things to Do

    The Arsenals Exhibition Hall of the Latvian National Museum of Art, is the largest exhibition hall in Riga. Located in an early 19th century customs warehouse building or arsenal built in the late Russian Classicism style, it was adapted to be used as a museum. The collection is mainly of works of art created by Latvian and Latvian-born artists...

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  • Choral Synagogue - Holocaust Memorial

    Riga Things to Do

    This is a very sad review. On July 4th 1941 while Riga was occupied by the Nazis, hundreds of Jewish refugees from Lithuania, together with local Latvian Jews were locked up in the basement of this synagogue then it was set on fire. The synagogue's ruins remain today. They are located about 10 minutes walk from the train station. Inside the ruins...

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  • National Theater

    4.5 out of 5 stars

    Riga Things to Do

    The theatre was built during the Russian occupation of Latvia and completed in 1902. It became the Latvian National Theatre in 1919. Its remit then, as it is today, was to showcase and promote Latvian culture both within the country and abroad. It was on its main stage that the Latvian Proclamation of Independence was made on the 18th of November...

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  • Esplanade Park

    Riga Things to Do

    I wandered through Esplanade park on my way to explore the Art Deco buildings of the Centra district. It's a lovely, leafy park with many mature trees and beautifully-planted flowerbeds (the gardeners..mostly female...were out tending them by 9am). There's a children's playground, some small fountains and a few statues. The one in the photo is of...

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  • Retro Tram

    Riga Things to Do

    As part of our tour of the city Rita had arranged for us to ride in one of Riga’s historic trams. There have been trams operating here since 1882, when they were drawn by horses, with the first electric trams being introduced in 1901. The sign where we boarded carried this date but I have since read that our tram is a 1909-1910 model which was...

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  • 1905 - Bloody Sunday Monument

    Riga Things to Do

    On the day I visited the Central Market I decided to loop round by the riverside, rather than simply take the direct route from my hotel - just to see what I came across. As I got to the railway bridge I noticed this memorial. I didn't have a clue what it was commemorating and apart from the 1905 year I couldn't figure anything else about it. So I...

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  • Skyline Bar

    Riga Things to Do

    At the top of the Latvija Hotel is the Skyline Bar. It's quite a good bar and the food is great but the best part is the view through the floor to ceiling windows. It fills up quickly, especially at about sunset, so get there early and take your seat. You can't sit in this place for too long. Which reminds me; How do you make a dog sound like a...

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  • Vansu Bridge

    Riga Things to Do

    This is a bridge over Daugava river. Finished in 1982, it must have been one of the most avantgardist bridges of its time. It is part of Kr.Valdemara iela, linking the northern part of the old town with the western parts of Riga. It’s spire has a height of 109 meters. With around 1/3 of Riga’s car traffic over Daugava river, it is the second...

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Latvia Things to Do

Reviews and photos of Latvia things to do posted by real travelers and locals. The best tips for Latvia sightseeing.
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