Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia. Three countries on the shores of the Baltic sea that can convert to a very interesting destination of your next summer holiday. They offer anything you could think of: big metropoles pulsing with (night)life, interesting historical monuments, beaches with soft white sand and azure sea, romantic and calm countryside as well as untouched nature and deep woods. And the best part is that you will have more time for discovering of all the beautiful places. The summer days are longer in these countries.
We will forever remember Latvia as a country with the fastest and most available internet connection in the world. But that is only one of its many advantages. There is a lot more what you can see, taste and experience in Latvia. It was a hard job to choose only three top must-sees or must-visits in Latvia. Fortunately we were able to accomplish this task.
Kuldiga offers many opportunities to see or experience something you will remember forever. A walk among the old wooden houses. A look on the roofs from the tower of St. Katarina’s church. Bathing in the Venta river – just above the Ventas Rumba, the widest waterfall in Europe (249m) and under the unique brick bridge built in 1874, one of the longest of its kind in Europe. And that is by far not all Kuldiga offers. We desperately fell in love with this town and plan to come back again.
The biggest city of the Baltic region, a pulsing metropole with more than one million inhabitants. It must be clear to everybody that a city like this can meet any expectations. Our top places in Riga are the following.
Mežaparks – a forest-park. It is a big piece of forest in the middle of the city. It provides the Riga residents with plenty of options for various activities. In the summer they can have a walk on its footpaths, they can do jogging, cycling, inline skating etc. Or they can use one of the open air fitness centers that are located in the park. In the winter it is possible to ski or snowboard, ice-skate etc. There are a couple of playgrounds in the park – each equipped for children of different age. Mežaparks accommodates also an adventure park that will satisfy all the adrenalin lovers. The city ZOO as well found its home in the Mežaparks.
The Old city center of Riga is quite crowded in the summer months. Groups of tourists from all around the world, concourse in front of the most interesting historical sights, expensive restaurants. It definitely has its unique atmosphere that you should experience. If you however want to enjoy the view of Old Riga from a calm and lonely place we recommend a picnic on the other shore of the Daugava river. The place is located on the Cross the river and turn to the right behind the bridge.
Another option to escape the crowded city center is a walk in the Art Nouveau district. It is only a couple of steps away from the city center and the beauty of its streets will dazzle and charm you.
There are more options to look on the Riga roofs from the top. We drove a little further from the city center to the Riga TV tower. For a symbolic fee (3,70EUR) you will be lifted to the height of 97m and see the whole city at a glance.
3. Sigulda and Turaida
Two extremely interesting and unique historical sites with beautiful nature and environment as a bonus. Do not skip visit of the medieval castle of the Livonian order in Sigulda and a ride with the cable car. It will take you to the height of about 42 meters above the Gauja river valley. The ride is more than 1km long. After the working hours there is a possibility to jump from the cabin of the cable car that stops exactly in the middle of its route right above the river waters. If you are brave enough and jump naked, you will have it for free.
In Turaida there is a huge museum complex located on an area of couple of dozens of acres. It includes a medieval castle or the oldest wooden church in Latvia. Very interesting is not only the outstanding and original exhibition documenting the history of the church but also the exhibition dedicated to the old Livons.
More tourist information about Sigulda is available on www.tourism.sigulda.lv and about the Turaida museum on www.turaida-muzejs.lv.
Click on www.latvia.travel for more information about Latvia.
During our stay in Latvia we also visited the historic town Cēsis. There is a lake called Vekis located nearby. We got invited by Algis – the local land owner – to spend a night at the lake. It was one of the best places we stayed overnight of the whole expedition To Gibraltar through Nordkapp. Check it out:
We spent a couple of weeks in the Baltic countries during our currently ongoing expedition To Gibraltar through Nordkapp. What is the expedition about we have described in our blog on www.vistatravellers.com. Here we also share our travel experience and impressions from the particular countries as well as interesting interviews from abroad. You can also follow us on Facebook in order to find out, how we progress with our expedition: www.facebook.com/vistatravellers.
More photos from Latvia on www.tomaskozik.com.