Every holidaymaker will find something in Latvia, regardless of whether you are drawn to the largely untouched nature, walk in the footsteps of Latvian history, do sports or want to spend a relaxing holiday with the family. Here you can find more information for your vacation in Latvia, a northern European country defined by Countryaah.
Those interested in culture and history
German Orders and Brothers of the Sword, Hanseatic League, World War II, Soviet rule – there are so many aspects of Latvian history that make the country worth seeing for those interested in history.
All of these phases are expressed in architecture, for example. The order castles, for example, with their mighty walls and defensive towers, give an impression of the battle-stressed time of the order knights. It is interesting to travel the country in the footsteps of the Teutonic Order or the Order of the Brothers of the Sword. An exciting tour through history! The most famous order castles should not be missing on any tour of Latvia.
At the time of the Hanseatic League, some of the Latvian cities belonged to this league and were therefore important trading cities, above all Riga, but also Ventspils, Kuldiga, Cesis and Valmiera. The heyday of the Hanseatic League is still evident today, especially in the magnificent House of the Blackheads in Riga.
And the sad legacy of Soviet rule is visible in the cityscape, but also in the customs of the Latvians: The song festival does not go back to the struggle for independence from the Soviets, but has a much longer history, but the Singing Revolution and national identity became further strengthened by Soviet rule.
And maybe one or the other visitor will even travel in the footsteps of their own family history: Many so-called Baltic Germans lived in Latvia, some ancestors probably come here. In the course of the immigration of the Order of the Heavy Brothers, many Germans came to the Baltic States, especially from Lower Saxony, Westphalia and Schleswig-Holstein. They later belonged mainly to the bourgeoisie and the large landowners. At the end of the 19th century, more and more Baltic Germans moved away, this culminated in the Hitler-Stalin Pact of 1939, in which the “return” of the Baltic Germans was sealed.
The nature of Latvia is of course a motive for a vacation. Deep forests, moors, lonely rivers and a wonderful coastline – some rugged, some calm and inviting for a swim – offer nature-loving holidaymakers great terrain for a holiday in the great outdoors. Those interested in ornithology, mushroom and berry collectors, anglers and of course hikers will get their money’s worth.
The Gauja National Park in particular attracts countless tourists year after year. No wonder, as it offers a wonderful holiday backdrop with the breathtaking landscape around the Gauja glacial valley. The rugged and diverse nature appears absolutely untouched in many places. Active people and families in love with nature should take a canoe or raft trip on the Gauja. If you want to learn something about nature, you have come to the right place on the Ligatne nature trails.
Landscapes of a completely different kind can be found in Kermeri or Slitere National Park. While bogs dominate in Kemeri and invite you to take long walks, in Slitere National Park, around Cape Kolka, the rough sea, a sand and dune landscape and pine forests are striking. As diverse as the landscapes are, a nature-loving holiday in Latvia is just as diverse.
Latvia is a great destination for a varied family vacation. The beautiful nature offers a variety of opportunities to be active, small towns and sights also offer children an insight into the culture of the country. The many, partly dilapidated castles of the Order are a great terrain for age-appropriate historical impressions. Which child doesn’t find an afternoon at a castle exciting and then wants to become a knight or damsel? In addition, the Latvians are a really child-friendly people. The numerous playgrounds, which are true children’s paradises and often have something in store for children of all ages: swings and seesaws for the little ones, meter-long slides, trampolines and huge climbing frames for the older ones, testify to this.
And nature also offers a lot. A raft trip on the Gauja followed by a picnic is a wonderful program for an extended family excursion. For the little adventurous: The Mezakakis high ropes course attracts visitors to Sigulda and Riga. And the nature park Laumu near Talsi with its nature trails offers an instructive but at the same time exciting insight into nature – not only for children.
Those seeking relaxation
If you really want to switch off, Latvia is the place for you. The landscape with its deep forests, meadows and the picturesque rivers and lakes is ideal for long walks or Nordic walking tours: Here you can take a deep breath and relax.
If that doesn’t go far enough, you should travel to Jurmala and let yourself be pampered in one of the wellness temples. The seaside resort has been known for recreational tourism since the 19th century. A sophisticated spa architecture, a healthy maritime climate, spa facilities and a beautiful beach, which invites you to swim in summer, attract those looking for relaxation. The Baltic Beach Hotel and the Hotel Jurmala Spa in particular have an extensive spa and wellness area with a sauna, steam bath and Russian banya, seawater swimming pool, beauty center and beauty salon.
Wellness stays are not only possible in Jurmala, but of course also in Riga, Ventspils and Liepaja. In addition, there are now some such facilities in the country: for example the Spa Hotel Usma on Lake Usma in Kurzeme or the designer Hotel Annas in Vizdeme with a large spa center and an attached slow food restaurant.