Destination Management Company (DMC), provides quality ground service to our international travel trade partners based on local knowledge. Our clients: tour operators, meeting planners, incentive houses and companies that require customized travel arrangements in the Baltic States and around Europe.

Riga city breaks

Riga Essentials & Tourist Information

Currency
Latvian Lat (LVL)
Exchange Rate
1 Euro = 0.7028 LvL
Time Zone
GMT +2 Hours
Language Latvian
Voltage 220 V AC (two-pin plugs)

National Holidays In Riga
January 1st – New Year’s Day
April 22nd (2011) – Good Friday
April 25th (2011) – Easter Monday
May 1st – Labour Day
May 4th – Declaration of Independence Day
June 23rd – Ligo (Midsummer’s Eve)
June 24th – Jani (Midsummer’s Day/St John’s Day)
November 18th – Latvian National Day
December 24th – Christmas Eve
December 25th – Chrstmas Day
December 26th – Boxing Day
December 31st – New Year’s Eve

Riga short breaks – Medieval charm and Baltic beaches
Riga city breaks feature one of the most popular Baltic destinations: an atmospheric, medieval Old Town combined with a thriving, stylish, cosmopolitan, modern capital with a friendly, buzzing atmosphere. Riga weekend breaks owe their popularity to the city’s wonderfully romantic Old Town and its fascinating Art Nouveau District. UNESCO World Heritage-listed Riga Old Town is a delightful ensemble of medieval cobbled streets, townhouses, fairytale spires and charming squares, while the New Town and Central District boast Europe’s finest collection of extraordinary, German-inspired, early 20th century art nouveau buildings. Riga city break highlights include the Town Hall Square, the Romanesque and Gothic Dome Cathedral, and the 15th century St Peter’s Church. As well as wonderful architecture, Riga short breaks offer parks, canals, waterways and excellent beaches at nearby Jurmala. The growing popularity of the Baltic States means cheap city breaks to Riga and Tallinn are available all year round from many UK regional airports.

Riga city breaks – Culture and nightlife
Interest in city breaks in Riga has grown steadily since Latvia achieved independence from Russia in the 1990’s. In recent years Riga weekend breaks have become phenomenally popular with a wide range of customers. City breaks to Riga have transformed this previously little-known European capital into a trendy destination with a fun, vibrant nightlife scene offering everything from trendy DJ lounge bars, casinos and discos, to boisterous pubs, live music and a thriving clubbing scene. As well as lively nightlife, Riga short breaks offer plenty of culture, with unusual museums and a strong reputation for classical music, ballet and opera.


Riga weekend breaks – Cosy cafes and trendy bars
Riga city breaks are understandably popular in the festive spring and summer months with their long hours of daylight, but also have a unique charm in the winter when the Old Town looks fabulous in the snow, and the city’s romantic cosy cafes and bars come into their own. Long weekend breaks in Riga will allow time to fully explore the white sandy beaches at the spa beach resort of Jurmala, just 20 minutes by train from Riga Old Town. If you enjoy a relaxing city break in Riga you should also consider weekend breaks in Tallinn, the beautiful capital of neighbouring Estonia.

Traditional Latvian food
Basically, Latvian food consists of chicken & pork fillets battered in egg and deep fried served with traditional dark rye bread and lots and lots of salads and fresh vegetables. Most of the salads are like a basic potato salad made with various chopped meats (smoked chicken & pork) and vegetables. Most of the salads use a cream based dressing rather than a mayonnaise base.

Getting around Riga
With the vast majority of city sights in the compact Old Town, there is very little need for Riga public transport. Getting around Riga is a pleasure on foot. Economical, efficient public transport consists of buses, trams, trolleybuses and minibuses. The Riga Card for tourists allows unlimited free travel on trolleybuses, buses and trams, plus free entry to museums and tours.

Walking
On a Riga city break, walking in the Old Town is a constant delight. All the major sights are easily reached on foot.

Bus/Tram/Trolleybus
Riga buses are extremely cheap. Buy flat fare tickets onboard. Tickets are not interchangeable on each mode of transport. Small minibuses run on central city routes. Riga transport runs from 06.00 to 24.00. A limited night service operates.


Riga sightseeing tours
Several companies offer Riga sightseeing tours by bus. River cruises on the Daugava River. Horse-drawn carriage tours from the Hotel.

The Old Town
Riga Old Town is a delightful ensemble of medieval cobbled streets, townhouses, fairytale spires and charming squares. The main focus is Town Hall Square. Riga Old Town highlights include the Romanesque Gothic Dome Cathedral and the 15th century St Peter’s Church. Climb the spire for superb views of the city. Riga Old Town is also a key area for pavement cafes, restaurants, cosy bars and Riga’s famously lively nightlife. In winter go skating in Liv Square and sample gorgeously romantic cafes. Stroll along the canal in Bastejkalns Park and visit the poignant Freedom Monument.

Art Nouveau District
Riga has one of Europe’s finest surviving collections of early 20th century German-influenced Jugendstil Art Nouveau architecture with its characteristic swirling lines, elaborate stucco decoration, bizarre facades and eccentric roofs. The best examples are in Riga New Town and Riga Central District. Key streets include Elizabetes, Alberta and Strelnieku. The Latvian Museum of Architecture in the Old Town has more information on this peculiar architectural style.


Culture
Aside from architecture, Riga offers classical music and world-renowned opera and ballet, with an opera festival in June. Top Riga museums and galleries include the Museum of Occupations dedicated to the Soviet and Nazi occupations, the National Art Museum, the State Museum of Fine Arts, the Museum of the History of Riga, the Latvian War Museum, the Museum of Decorative Applied Arts and the Ethnographic Open-Air Museum of Latvia. Mentzendorff’s House is a beautifully-restored 17th-century merchant’s house with original period furniture.

Nightlife
City breaks in Riga have rapidly established a reputation for fun lively nightlife. You will find cosy romantic cafes, trendy DJ lounge bars, cocktail bars, boisterous pubs, discos, nightclubs, casinos and a modest but enthusiastic live music scene. The Riga clubbing scene is thriving, with several weird and wonderful venues open until late.

Jurmala Beach
Jurmala Beach has been a popular spa resort since the 19th century and is a great short trip out of the city. Jurmala beach has soft white sand and is backed by woodlands and forest. Gently shelving water makes this a great place for swimming in the bracing Baltic Sea! Nice walks along the Lielupe River. Visit the Art Nouveau Baznica Church, explore the Kemeri National Park, splash about in the water park or simply enjoy the seafront cafes, bars and restaurants. Jurmala beach is reached by train from Riga Central station in just 20 minutes.


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