Riga, the capital of Latvia is an amazing place for tourism, wild weekends and everyday living. Often mentioned as “Paris of the North”, Riga is well known for its architectural and cultural values. Riga is located on the both shores of Daugava River, about 15km (9mi) from its mouth in the south-eastern corner of the Gulf of Riga.
Centuries-old German buildings are strewn throughout the historic quarter of Vecriga (Old Riga), and taking the lift up to the spire of St Peter’s Church for an aerial view of the neighborhood is one of the highlights of a visit. Riga Castle dates from 1330, when it was built as the headquarters of the Livonian Order. It’s now the home of Latvia’s president. With as much history as Riga has, it is difficult to decide where to begin the exploration of it all.
Today there are 28 museums, 7 professional theatres, 12 cinemas, 4 concert halls as well as the circus and zoo in Riga. Every year many cultural activities take place in the city: Days of Art, the assembly of Vanguard Fashion, ‘Arsenals’ film festival, National Folk Song and Dance Festival. Besides, there are 277 amateur art groups in the city.
Every year thousands of tourists from various countries of the world visit Riga. Both the advantageous geographical position and cultural potential enable the city to become a flourishing centre of tourism. Infrastructure that promotes the development of tourism is being created, numerous entertainment and cultural programs are offered, and adequate information and service systems are being created.
A variety of restaurants, clubs and cafes are distinguished by their pleasant atmosphere and original interior. The guests are welcome to visit the National Opera House, Philharmonic Hall or spend their time visiting Ethnographic open-air museum in the open air.
Riga is more than 800 years old and with a blend of a medieval centre and a modern city, mixed together so perfectly that it fits every taste, with an enchanting and irresistible charm of old times.
Riga has the finest concentration of Art Nouveau (Jugend) buildings in Europe. Before the Soviet occupation, Riga was an important economical centre and one of the most influential parts of Northern Europe. Even if most of Riga’s earlier buildings have been destroyed in the wars, you find evidence all around the city from different centuries, not only in the streets of the Old Town.
The old town of Riga has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site but the entire city is particularly notable for its extensive Art Nouveau architecture, comparable in significance only with Vienna, Prague and Barcelona.
Today’s Riga, the largest city in the Baltic States, is a vibrant, fast-evolving modern city that has a lot to offer. Music plays an important role in the everyday life so when you want to relax, Riga has so much to offer: from music festivals, concerts, folk music to hot night spots.