Introducing the city

£1.00 | 1.14 €


Gasoline £0.98 | 1.11 €

One-way ticket £1.05 | 1.20 €

Beer £1.76 | 2.00 €

Main Course £5.27 | 6.00 €

About Rīga

Riga has undergone a dramatic transformation since it gained independence from the Soviet Union in 1991. Now known as the ‘Paris of the North’, the city boasts beautiful German Art Nouveau architecture and a lively culture that travellers the world over are making the most of.

Riga has a reputation as a ‘city that never sleeps’ and with nightlife in abundance to cater for all tastes, it's easy to see why.

But don’t worry, there are plenty of daytime exploits to get your teeth into as well. From the ultra-hip café culture to the eclectic cuisine, or the unparalleled grandeur of its architecture – Riga is good value for its ‘European Capital of Culture’ accolade, awarded in 2014.

Of all the Baltic capitals, Riga is undoubtedly the largest, liveliest and most cosmopolitan of them all. Good times await in this exciting city, regardless of budget, so stop what you’re doing and go and find your passport. You can sleep on the plane home.

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When Should You Visit?

The summer is when Riga truly shines, with sunny skies, plenty of entertainment and bars spilling out onto the street. However, as you might expect, this is also when the city can see the peak of the crowds.

For this reason, we recommend planning your stay in late spring or late summer, when the weather is pleasant but the crowds are few.

Riga enjoys a humid, continental climate, meaning that the weather is generally moderate throughout the year, with warm summers and cold winters. Temperatures can dip to -8 degrees Celsius in January, whilst in summer, average daily highs are around 22 degrees Celsius.

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Travioor top tips

Panoramic View

Insider Info

  • Riga is a stunning place to explore down below, but it’s also a delight from up high. The best place to get a panoramic view of the city is to climb St. Peter’s church tower (there is also a handy lift), where you will be rewarded with an outstanding vantage point.

  • Spend the day at the nearby seaside resort of Jurmala, where you can enjoy long sandy beaches, gourmet cuisine and a lively atmosphere by the seaside.

  • Visit a museum with a difference, and explore the Latvian Ethnographic Open-Air Museum, which is made up of dozens of farmhouses, churches and windmills, providing a record of bygone country life.

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Food and drink

Main Course £5.27 | 6.00 €

3-Course Meal £30.77 | 35.00 €

Cappuccino £1.98 | 2.26 €

Beer £1.76 | 2.00 €

The Scene

Riga enjoys a multifaceted cuisine that is sure to engage all the senses. If you want to get your teeth into some of the local specialties, try some Karbonāde (breaded pork chops), Kartupeļu pankūkas (potato pancakes), or our personal favourite, Alexander Torte (raspberry or cranberry-filled pastry strips).

And it’s not just the food that you need to try. The city has an exciting array of drinks for all tastes. Riga’s Black Balsam – a thick, black alcoholic herbal drink – is hugely popular amongst locals and tourists. There are also many good local beers, such as Cesu, Aldaris, Uzavas, Bauskas Tumsais and Gaisais, as well as fruit juices made from wild berries for those less inclined towards alcohol.

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Rīga’s Story

Riga was founded by German traders, mercenaries and crusaders in the second half of the 12th century, soon becoming a centre of trade between Europe and the Baltic nations and Russia.

The city became a target of foreign military, political and religious aspirations, first coming under the rule of the Polish-Lithuanian Union, then Sweden and later Russia in a period of just 150 years.

Russian influence weakened after the Grand Revolution, and Latvia retained independence after the First World War. The devastated country had a brief period of democracy and economic recovery, but soon Soviet troops re-occupied the country.

Latvia became independent from the collapsing USSR in 1991 and has steadily restored its sense of culture, nationality and individuality. Latvia has been a member of the European Union and the NATO since May 1, 2004.


Sveiks | Hello
Paldies | Thank you


The official language of the country is Latvian, which is believed to be one of the oldest Indo-European languages, whilst the second most popular is, unsurprisingly, Russian. English is becoming more and more popular, especially with younger citizens. Here are some basic Latvian phrases to get you started:

  • Yes: Jā
  • No: Nē
  • Goodbye: Uz redzēšanos
  • Please/You’re Welcome: Lūdzu
  • Excuse me/Sorry: Atvainojiet
  • Do you speak English?: Vai jūs runājat angliski?

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Need to know

+371 Dialling Code
112 Emergency Services

Get The Low-Down

  • There is a frequent bus service that goes between the airport and the city centre which takes about 30 minutes.
  • The best way to get around Riga is on foot or by bike, though there are a variety of other efficient and reasonably-priced public transport links available too.
  • Whilst Riga enjoys moderate weather, it can be unpredictable, so we recommend taking a range of clothes suitable for all possible conditions.



Find out about the visa requirements for Latvia here.

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Travioor Recommends

1. Old Town

A trip to Riga is incomplete without a stroll through the cobbled, labyrinthine streets of the city’s Old Town area. Get lost along the narrow lanes.

2. Museum

Learn more about the city’s turbulent historical experiences at the Museum of the Occupation of Latvia.

3. Central Market

Grab a snack or memento at Central Market, the colorful and huge Soviet-style bazaar, enjoyed by tourists and locals alike.

4. National Opera

See a show at the Latvian National Opera. The performances are world-class, whilst the beautiful building is an architectural masterpiece of the 19th century.

5. Gutmanis Cave

Step back in time at Gutmanis Cave, where you can admire graffiti that dates back to the 16th century.

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