Riga’s Old Town is a UNESCO World Heritage site, its winding, wobbly lanes are beautiful to wander through. But the most outstanding are the avenues of art nouveau buildings some, with their adornments of femmes fatales and fiendish gargoyles, are so amazing you can’t pass without stopping.

The Museum of the Occupation is fascinating, haunting in parts. And the Ethnographic Open-Air Museum on lake Jugla is remarkable: traditional wooden buildings, brought from all over the country, set up to look like villages from the 18th & 19th centuries.

Recently Riga also became a European Capital for Culture and it is well deserved. The restored 18th-century National Opera House is worthy of a whole evening. The new National Library, designed by Latvian architect Gunnar Birkerts, is a huge glass and steel mountain. And don’t miss an organ recital in The Dome - the organ one of the largest in Europe.

Riga also has a wild side and the low population density of the country has helped keep its wilderness that way.

Art Nouveau Architecture

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Art Nouveau Architecture

Art Nouveau Architecture

Art Nouveau flourishes like nightmarish gargoyles and praying goddesses adorn more than 750 buildings in the heart of Riga. The tourist office offers guided and self-guided tours of some of the more architecturally spectacular buildings in the city.

Old Town

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Old Town

Old Town

The heart of the old town resembles great cities like Berlin, Paris, and Rome, with winding cobblestone streets, beautiful buildings, and quaint shops, restaurants, and cafés around every turn. Bring your walking shoes—the best way to explore the area is on foot.

Freedom Monument

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Freedom Monument

Freedom Monument

The Freedom Monument is one of Latvia’s national symbols. Erected during the first independence, it has survived Soviet regimes, conflict, and the passage of time.

Riga, Latvia At a glance

Current Weather:
Mostly Cloudy (Night)
12°C / 53 °F
Scattered Thunderstorms
Scattered Thunderstorms
Current Time:
9:17:51 pm2018/10/22 21:17:51 pm
Monday, October 22
UTC/GMT +03:00
Exchange Rates:
  • 1.16
  • 1.50
  • 0.87
  • 1.52
  • 75.18
  • 3.81
  • 22.28
  • 1.69
Local Details:
Size: 304.00 KM2 (117.38 MI2)
Population: 641,007
Density: 2,109 Pop/KM2 (814 Pop/MI2)
Country Code: 371

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