The old town of Riga is all charm, a gorgeous advertisement for Latvia. We loved wandering the cobbled streets of this Baltic capital and the European joie de vivre after months of travelling in Central Asia.
We enjoyed all sorts of architecture in Riga, from the city’s 13th century beginnings right through to Art Nouveau heaven.
Flowers, peacocks and naked ladies abound, that is on the building facades.
The view from the spire of St Peters (it has a lift) is of uneven roofs, peaceful squares, a wide river and the sea. The Lutheran churches are austere compared to so many Orthodox and Baroque cathedrals in Russia and other parts of Europe.
The parkland that winds along the banks of the river is great for whiling away the hottest part of the day.
While sightseeing, it’s important to stop at least every half an hour for a salad, a cold beer in a peaceful courtyard, some goodies from the patisserie, a dish of Latvian bangers and mash…
There are so many stylish bars and restaurants, we even found a bar in Riga that serves a selection of chocolate alcoholic cocktails. And many pavement cafes that are a perfect place to watch this delightfully small world go by.
By Natasha von Geldern