Riga Weekend Breaks

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Weekend Breaks to Riga

Planning a short break to Riga? Check out Travel Library's recommended Top 10 Things To Do in Riga. It's a perfect companion for weekend city breaks to Riga. Once you've been you can add your own tips and suggestions to help other visitors.

Vecriga (Old Riga)

From Marijas iela turn right into any of the small streets beyond the canal to reach Vecriga. Centuries-old German buildings are strewn throughout the historic quarter. Just strolling through these ancient street allows you to capture some of what was once. It would be a good idea to pick up a copy of Riga in Your Pocket for goods maps and info. You can get a copy from any kiosk, hotel or tavel agency.

St Peter's Church

Sv. Petera baznica; c. 1209, Vecriga - taking the lift up the spire gives you an aerial view of the neighbourhood and is well worth the trip.

Riga Castle

on Pils laukums dates back to 1330, when it was built as the headquarters of the Livonian Order. It houses the Latvian History Museum, the Rainis Museum of Literary and Art History. For more information please call the Tourservice on 326 009 (fax number 323 321) - they are situated at Elizabetes iela 27.

Central Market

Housed in several WWI zeppelin hangars on Negu iela (behind the bus station) south of Old Riga, this lively market is a focal point for the city. For healthy eating, these markets sell a wide variety of dairy products and fresh fruit and vegetables.

The WWII Riga ghetto

in the suburb of Maskavas and home to Riga's only remaining synagogue and the city's Jewish Museum. For more information or to arrange a guided tour you can contact Patricia on 284 868 - at Elizabetes iela 22. Alternatively, you can also hire a car from Patricia and explore on your own.

Riga Motor Museum

8km east of Old Riga (catch bus no. 21 from the Orthodox cathedral). Houses cars that once belonged to Gorky, Stalin, Khrushchev and Brezhnev. In addition you can see life-size figures of these men themselves. The museum is open every day except Monday from 10 am to 7 pm.

Doma laukums (Dome Square)

In summer, tables and chairs are out and the entire area has a fun-filled atmosphere with cheap cafes, beer tents and late-night bars. A popular restaurant with the westerners is Mozums in Skunu iela who serve good lasagne or steak.

The Gauja valley

a winter sports centre with a bobsleigh run at Sigulda and a ski jump at Valmiera. From Valmiera you can take a canoe trip down the Gauja River and enjoy the scenery from the river's viewpoint. Should you wish to arrange a trip, you can contact the Latvian University Tourist Club on 22-228 320 at Raina bulvaris 19. They offer a few basic trips that include accommodation and food and vary from between 3 - 9 days on the Gauja.

The circus

Riga has a permanent circus that is worth visiting. Situated on Merkela iela 4, you can witness some very strange acts, for example the performing pigs and the non-performing domestic cats. Please bear in mind that the circus goes on holiday from June to September.

Parks and Boulevards

East of Old Riga's jumbled streets, the city's old moat (City Canal) winds its way through the parks and wide boulevards. The Freedom Monument stands on Brivibas bulvaris near the junction with Raina bulvaris. This central landmark was erected in 1935 but was previously out of bounds in the Soviet years.

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