Admire quirky art nouveau architecture, climb to the top of medieval castles and spot wildlife in a nature park in this enticing Eastern European country.
Plan a trip to the gorgeous country of Latvia, where pristine nature and photogenic vistas await. Stay in the cosmopolitan capital to experience its bustle, or head out to the coasts for walks through castle grounds and stunning landscapes.
Latvia’s capital, Riga, is a charming city that blends old and new, with everything from historic cobblestone streets to experimental contemporary art. One of the city’s busiest thoroughfares, Alberta Iela, was named after the founder of Riga and is lined with attractive art nouveau architecture showcasing intricate designs and patterns. Mingle with locals at Riga Central Market, a busy shopping area housed in World War I hangars. Visit before lunch to gather up fresh food for an al fresco midday picnic.
Find the Turaida Museum Reserve, a grassy area featuring a stunning red-brick castle and several other monuments, in Sigulda, about an hour’s drive northeast of Riga.
In western Latvia, the beautiful Kolka Peninsula offers nature parks populated by local wildlife such as deer, elk, and beavers. Put on your hiking boots to explore Slitere National Park at the end of the peninsula.
Also on the west coast are the port towns of Ventspils and Liepaja. Sunbathe on the beach in Ventspils with the undulating sand dunes behind you or discover the thriving pop-rock music scene in Liepaja.
Journey to the east of Latvia to the Latgale region, often referred to as the “Land of Blue Lakes.” Walk over old castle mounds in Daugavas Loki Nature Park and watch boats sailing across Lake Dridza.
Fly to Riga from airports across Europe. If you’re staying in Riga, a bus trip from Riga Airport to the city center takes about 40 minutes. Travelers looking for an adventure or just trying to save a bit of money may want to consider taking a bus to Latvia from neighboring Russia or Belarus.
Visit Latvia to discover vast nature parks, enchanting architecture and an interesting blend of history and innovation.