Europeans and tourists from the whole world come to Riga nowadays, and with good reason. Riga is bubbling over with life and has become something of a creative epicentre of the Baltics. The city has a remarkable offer, especially in culture.
Historically, Riga has always been a crossroads, a melting pot of various nations and cultures, and its unique character has been shaped by the proximity of water – the Daugava River and the Gulf of Riga – as much as by its diversity. The city has always lived in communion with nature, and many public parks, forests, squares, lakes and city canals are important parts of residents’ daily life. In the springtime, the air in Riga is full of the heady aroma of lilacs; in the autumn, it exudes the melancholy of falling yellow and red leaves; in the winter, it sparkles with a feeling of wonder after a fresh, white layer of snow.
People in Riga can walk up a hill, sail to an island, or rest on a beach, while sharing this home with nesting birds and even beavers. Many places in the city are within walking distance, and visitors can wander between green relaxation zones, dynamic streets and rural idylls.
Each cultural and architectural era and trend has left its mark in the city – from Gothic, Renaissance, Baroque and Classicism to Art Nouveau, modernism and vernacular wooden architecture. An eclectic city, surprising in its diversity. Today, Riga is a cradle for innovative start-ups, and is proud to showcase its excellent music and contemporary art scene, for example through the Song Festival. Riga has a glamorous city centre, and is recognised as a ‘hipster republic’. Riga’s gastronomy is a growing dynamic sector as local chefs compete in their search for ‘the flavor of Latvia’.
Even though geographically Riga can be considered a Nordic city, its multinational character makes it both adventurous and passionate. And yet, also ambitious. Like any city full of creative energy, it vibrates, pulsates and astonishes at any time of year.