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With an architectural heritage that ranges from medieval to Art Nouveau and ultra modern, Riga is a lively fusion of old and new. Near the capital is a seaside resort where tsars once swam and a medieval town home to a trio of castles.Find Cruises Sailing to This Port
Whether it's medieval architecture and cobble stone streets you're after or extravagant Art Nouveau buildings and manicured 19th century parks, Riga has plenty of visual stimulation for all tastes. Explore what's left of the city's Soviet legacy or take a tour of Riga Cathedral (Rigas Domas) the largest house of worship in the Baltics.
Nature enthusiasts looking for sporting adventures are in the right place. There are a handful of parks that cater to outdoor activities. For those who are not sure where to start, there are a variety of daytime and evening activities that can be organized in and around Riga. Hurtle down Sigulda's thrilling world championship bobsleigh track, play with big guns at a shooting range, embark on a biking safari, take a Segway tour through Old Town, play golf or tennis, explore the beautiful countryside or experience weightlessness in one of Riga's wind tunnels.
Described as a classic European city, you'll find that enjoying a cup of coffee, whether black or with cream, and a miniature pastry in an elegant sidewalk café is part of Riga's way of life. The city's cafes and restaurants are well-known for high-quality cuisine and service. You will find everything from French haute-cuisine, to Spanish and Japanese dining. For a great meal at a reasonable price, check out Riga's LIDO restaurants. Each dining establishment serves a wide variety of soups, salads, fruits and deserts buffet-style. Looking for good food on the go? Latvian fast food includes pelmeni, Russian meat dumplings, pancake and kebabs. Don't forget to try a glass of Latvian beer in one of the many summer terraces in Old Town.
Riga is a shopper's dream come true, carrying almost all well-known European labels. The city's shopping hotspots are mostly concentrated in the Old Town, where you'll find fashion shops and famous brands' boutiques on Valnu Street and Basteja Pasaza. If you're looking for a unique Latvian souvenir, visit Jekaba Kazarmas (Jacob’s Barracks) where you can purchase amber jewelry. Galerija Centrs (Center Gallery) houses more than 100 shops, many which offer tax-free shopping. The nearby small streets of Tirgonu and Laipu are great spots for art and antique shopping. The sales tax is 21% but 12-15% of this can be claimed back for non-European Union citizens with Global Refund.
The official currency of Latvia is the Euro. Most hotels, restaurants and shops accept credit cards and traveler's checks. Cash is required if you plan on purchasing items from street vendors. You can exchange your Latvian Lat at all banks and money exchange offices. Most hotels, restaurants and shops accept credit cards; most major banks cash traveler's checks. However, you will need cash if you plan on purchasing items from street vendors.
|Average Precip.||1.3 in||3.3 cm|
Learn more about this port city with these tourist information guides.