Top attractions in Riga
Top 9 Things to do in Riga
Riga, Latvia is so interesting for its combination of strong Latvian culture and influence from the countries that occupied it. The capital of the Baltic states is sometimes called the “Paris of the North,” for its old-time charm to a techno beat.
1. St. Peter's Church, Riga
This majestic church has stood, in some form, along the Daugava river since 1209. Climb to the top of its tower for an unmatched aerial view of the city.
2. Freedom Monument
This stunning monument was built to honor those killed in the Latvian War of Independence and has come to represent freedom for all the Latvian people.
3. Nativity Cathedral, Riga
The stunning Nativity Cathedral has a fascinating history of conversion from Russian Orthodox to Lutheran during WWI, then back to Orthodox, only to be threatened by the Soviets.
4. Latvian Ethnographic Open Air Museum
It’s an absolute must, especially if you can’t make it to the Latvian countryside. Wander through the traditional Latvian houses and forest in this outdoor “living history” museum.
5. Vērmanes Garden
A local favorite, the Vērmanes Garden is the oldest park in Riga. It is the green lung in the center of the city, and it seems there's always an event for young and old alike.
6. Riga Motor Museum
The best antique vehicle museum of the Baltic countries is without a doubt the Riga Motor Museum. Be sure to check out the 1938 Auto Union racing car Type D.
7. Riga Zoo
For 6€ you can delight in creatures from the furthest ends of earth. From giraffes to tigers, there’s a critter for everyone.
8. Latvian Railway History Museum
This fascinating collection of USSR steam locomotives and diesel traction, signaling equipment, tools and instruments, uniforms and badges is one of the city’s hidden gems.
9. St. Alexander Nevsky Church, Riga
In the historic center of Riga stands this wooden rotunda church. Packed with Riga history, the building has become a symbol of unity across all denominations of faith.
Frequently asked questions about Riga
What top attractions are a must-see in Riga?
The must-see attractions in Riga are:See all must-see sights in Riga
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Which tours in Riga are taking additional COVID-19 precautions?
These experiences in Riga are taking additional COVID-19 precautions:See all Riga tours on GetYourGuide
Planning Your Visit
Explore Old Town by Foot
This bustling district is a wonderland of winding streets that lead to quaint cafes and independent shops. Hit the bars for your first taste of the infamous Black Balsam.
Visit the Central Riga Market
Great for people watching and stocking up on huckleberries, the Central Market is housed in a bunch of WWI Zeppelin hangars.
Good to know
- Euro (€)
- Time Zone
- UTC (+02:00)
- Country Code
- Best time to visit
- Summer is the best time to visit the city, which comes to life with the warm temperatures. There's always a chance of rain, though, so plan ahead!
Other Sightseeing Options in Riga
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What people are saying about Riga
I find Latvia, and Riga, a welcoming place in general and that positive impression has just been so reinforced, and greatly exceeded by my experience with Rolands on the kayak tour. With great environmental and local knowledge, as you would expect, Rolands went above and beyond bringing everything to life with a depth of personal experience. But he need not have done as the environment itself was so breath taking - with mist rising from an untouched natural world absolutely full of river life it felt at times like you where paddling down the Amazon or were an extra on the set of Jurassic park. More was provided than could have been expected in the tour description. I was left feeling looked after and thoroughly contented. If you want a TRULY unforgettable experience and experience a different side of Latvia, the "real Latvia" whatever that means, book this tour. You will be glad you did.
Our guide was a very friendly and welcoming person. She showed us through all the market halls on the central market and told many interesting stories about the market and Latvian traditions. You get to sample various smoked and marinated meat pieces (pork and chicken), cheese, fresh milk, candy, different sorts of fish, bread, and pickles, all typical for Latvia. As well as a local liquor, Wodka and the bread drink Kwas. Of course everybody has different taste, but I think there is really something for everybody (except maybe vegans). Take the tour around noon and you can skip lunch instead. If I can recommend an idea, I would propose to introduce a second tour in the old city to sample different typical warm dishes from Latvia at different restaurants (as there is a lot to sample as well).
I find Latvia, and Riga, a welcoming place in general and that positive impression has just so reinforced, by my experience with our tour guide. Great local knowledge, as you would expect, brought to life with a depth of personal and lived experiences. (Aside from a single experience in childhood our guide was not able to eat bananas again until 15 - book the tour to learn more ;)). Our guide provided so much more than was described and you were left feeling looked after and at home in Latvia - as well as thoroughly amused (great sense of humour) and and well fed. Trust me - if you want the best experience of the market look no further. You will be glad you booked.
Excellent tour, unforgettable and breathtaking. We were picked up and dropped off at our hotel. Our tour unfortunately took place in the rain but nonetheless our tour guide was excellent, encouraging and engaging. Truly magnificent location and marvellous views of Sigulda, castle and Gauja national park. Worth your money, in all aspects!
a great experirence. the guide was very kind and explained us a lot of the stuff we were seeing