Latvian Adventures: Discovering The Best Places To Visit

Fri Nov 17 2023

Discovering The Best Places To Visit in Latvia

Are you looking for an adventure filled vacation, with plenty of interesting cultural attractions and stunning natural beauty? Latvia is the perfect destination to satisfy your wanderlust! From kayaking on its rivers and sea, to exploring old towns and visiting historical sites, there's something for everyone. Learn about the best places in Latvia that are sure to thrill any traveling spirit.

Key Takeaways

  • Latvia offers adventure seekers stunning natural beauty, captivating culture and unique experiences like sauna rituals.
  • Some of the top 10 must - visit places in Latvia include Riga, Gauja National Park, Jurmala & Kuldiga.
  • Adventurers can explore historic landmarks such as Turaida Museum Reserve and picturesque towns like Cēsis or Liepaja with its white sand seaside beaches.
  • Nature lovers will appreciate the breathtaking views at Cape Kolka or take a relaxing boat ride down Gauja River while admiring beautiful surroundings.

Overview of Latvia

Latvia is a small yet diverse country situated on the Eastern coast of Europe. Its coastline offers stunning scenery, with white sandy beaches and fantastic views of the Baltic Sea.

At its inland, Latvia boasts an incredible blend of lush forests, fertile plains, lakes, rivers and hilly regions – providing plenty of opportunities for outdoor activities such as hiking and exploring nature.

The cultural melting pot featuring Latvian-speaking Balts as well as Russians creates a unique atmosphere that can only be experienced in this part of Europe. Every corner hides remnants from past rulers - castles built in medieval times or Soviet architecture provide visitors with countless glimpses into Latvia's vast history.

Why Latvia is a great destination for adventure seekers

Latvia is an amazing destination for travelers looking to experience the best adventure activities. There are beautiful beaches, stunning national parks with diverse ecosystems, forests, lakes, rivers and more.

Plus Latvia offers budget-friendly options for accommodation, dining and exciting activities in unspoiled landscapes. From kayaking on the Brasla and Gauja rivers to half-day Riga hiking adventures or coastal hikes, you can explore some unique places without breaking your wallet.

You could also enjoy a sauna ritual that's unlike any other which gives total relaxation or take a one day hike tour at Gauja National Park with the family while getting acquainted with Latvian traditional customs along the way.

Top 10 Must-Visit Places in Latvia

From ancient ruins, jaw-dropping sand beaches to cozy natural parks and reserves - Latvia offers something for adventurers of all tastes. Read on to explore the best getaways in this gorgeous country!


Riga, the stylish capital of Latvia, is a must-visit destination for adventure seekers. The city is renowned for its stunning architectural landmarks – such as Freedom Monument and St.

Peter's Church – and cultural gems like Riga Castle & Museum of Art that make great tourist attractions; it was even declared as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1997! Moreover, green spaces offer travelers brief escapes from the busy urban environment while its rich art nouveau architecture adds character to this unique cityscape.

From wooden buildings to castles and palaces, there’s lots to explore here! Not to mention Europe’s widest river rapid called Venta Rapid which draws adventure enthusiasts in large numbers every year as well – making Riga one of the top 10 must-visit places in Latvia.

Gauja National Park

Located near Sigulda in Latvia, Gauja National Park is one of the most popular places to visit for adventurers. The park offers a stunning landscape with sandstone cliffs and rock formations attracting locals and visitors alike.

Visitors can enjoy exploring the various cultural and historical sights within the park while taking boat rides down the meandering Gauja River to admire its natural beauty from different angles.

There are numerous hiking trails which provide just as much scenic views as cruises do on the river too. Adventure seekers wanting an adrenaline rush won't be disappointed either - they can try bungee jumping or canoeing on the beautiful Gauja River located inside this National Park!


Located on the Gulf of Riga, Jurmala is a coastal resort town known for its stunning sandy beaches. Exploring this picturesque Latvian town can be an unforgettable experience for travelers who seek adventure.

For sun seekers, Jurmala has plenty to offer with its nature reserve, cultural heritage sites and historical monuments. Popular attractions include Dzintari Beach, Kemeri National Park, Jurmala Open-Air Museum and Livu Aqua Park – a state-of-the art water park complete with multiple swimming pools and slides - perfect for both adults and children to enjoy! Shop till you drop at Jomas Street or simply take in the views of Majori Beach or explore nature's beauty along one of the rivers flowing through the city.

Visitors can reach here from Riga within half an hour by train making it among the most easily accessible destination from Latvia’s capital city. In addition to all these experiences that bring tourists closer to their travel aspirations; what truly makes Jurmala unique is its centuries-old tradition of saltwater baths which have evolved over time into ornate Latvian saunas rituals rich in culture and tradition that breathes out history like no other place in Europe!


Located in southwestern Latvia, Kuldiga is known as one of the country's oldest towns and a UNESCO heritage site. This historic settlement boasts some of the most unique must-see attractions in Latvia such as the Venta Rapid Waterfall - Europe's widest waterfall - Kuldiga Old Town, Kuldiga Bridge, and Museum of the Kuldiga Region.

The town is also home to scenic natural wonders like Riezupe Sand Caves and stunning views along Cape Kolka on Matisa slope looking over bends of Abava river valley. With its spectacular history and cultural significance,Kuldiga offers travelers an incredible Latvian adventure with plenty to explore including beautiful parks and trails, cafes for relaxing dining experiences or warm drinks by roaring fires in cozy wooden cottage interiors.

Kuldiga is located approximately two hours drive away from Riga capital city making it both easily accessible yet far enough away to be fully immersed into true Latvian culture. Adventure seekers visiting would certainly not want to miss out on experiencing this historical gem nestled within its nature reserves!

Rundale Palace and Museum

Rundale Palace and Museum is a great example of 18th-century Baroque architecture that stands as one of Latvia’s top tourist attractions. Located in the town of Bauska, this grand palace was commissioned by the Duke Ernst Johann von Biron for his residence between 1736 and 1740.

This family home also served as a gathering place for the aristocracy to conduct business meetings and host parties. Today, visitors can explore this living monument to Grecian coffers, allegorical ceilings, rococo grottoes and much more.

In addition to its architectural highlights, the museum hosts exhibitions highlighting local history and culture offering an insight into Latvia’s aristocratic past. Taking a tour around Rundale Palace provides first-hand experience on why it earned its title of "The Versailles Of The Baltics".

Turaida Museum Reserve

Turaida Museum Reserve is a unique destination for travelers looking to explore the cultural history of Latvia. Located near Sigulda, this vast reserve encompasses a variety of historical gems, from ancient inscriptions on rock walls in a 7th century cave to Turaida Castle — once one of the most powerful fortresses in all of Livonia.

Visitors can also admire the wooden church at Stikliņi and uncover artifacts that reveal snippets from centuries past. As an integral part of Latvian history and culture, this reserve provides deep insight into both historic events as well as everyday life during medieval times.

With guided tours available year-round, it's easy to see why so many call Turaida Museum Reserve one of the top 10 must-visit places in Latvia!


Cēsis is one of the top 10 must-visit places in Latvia for adventure seekers. Located at a short distance from Riga, it is easily accessible with its own charming and quaint atmosphere.

At Cēsis, visitors will find historical landmarks such as the town’s beautiful castle which dates back to the Middle Ages as well as other attractions such as St. John’s Church and Cēsis Museum of History and Art.

Tourists are attracted to this picturesque town because of its cultural heritage, architectural beauty and unique medieval architecture like no other place in Latvia. You can experience culture attractions by walking along ancient alleys or savor mouthwatering traditional Latvian dishes while admiring some spectacular views that make Cēsis so special and beloved by all who visit it.


Liepaja is a beautiful city in West Latvia, within easy reach of the capital Riga. It's one of the top 10 must-visit places in Latvia for Latvian adventures and offers many unique attractions such as breathtaking green spaces and coastal views at Liepaja's Seaside Park, historical landmarks like the Northern Forts and Karosta Prison, and cultural sites like the Holy Trinity Cathedral or Lielais Dzintars concert hall.

A visit to this hidden gem will leave you feeling refreshed with its little old streets, white-sand beaches and refreshing sea smell. Whether it’s relaxing at Jurmalas Park or exploring further through guided tours around its historic sights - Liepaja has something special on offer for travelers looking to discover more about Latvia’s culture and history!


A visit to the city of Daugavpils in southeastern Latvia is a must for any adventurous traveler. This beautiful city offers ruggedly handsome and dramatic landscapes set against a backdrop of impressive historical architecture, like the distinctive Daugavpils Fortress.

Explore fascinating art galleries and museums - such as the Daugavpils Mark Rothko Art Centre - or enjoy some spiritual relaxation by visiting places of worship like St. Boris and Gleb Cathedral.

Other popular attractions include the friendly Latgale Zoo, packed full with interesting animals; or discover local history at The Daugavpils Regional Studies and Art Museum where there are numerous exhibitions offering deep insight into Latvian culture, heritage,and traditions.

Cape Kolka

Cape Kolka is an unforgettable destination for adventure seekers located at the northeastern tip of Latvia. Part of the Slitere National Park, it attracts nature lovers from around the globe with its unique sights and natural beauty.

Surrounded by water, the Cape offers awe-inspiring views that you won't get anywhere else. Here, where The Sea Inlet and The Great Sea meet up, a stunning coastal scenery complete with cliffs and beaches await adventurers looking to explore something new.

Moreover, it's home to some intriguing historical remains like ruins of old fortifications as well as rare wildlife inhabitants like dozens of different birds species make this place even more special! For those ready to embark on an amazing journey full of discovery – Make sure not to miss this one-of-a-kind opportunity at Cape Kolka!

Hiking Adventures in Latvia

Explore the million-year-old landscape of Gauja National Park and take a hike to Sigulda forest trails, Kemeri National Park or join a guided half-day tour in Riga.


Sigulda is a stunning nature and adventure-filled town that makes for a great day trip destination from Riga. Its autumn colors alone make it worth the visit, but there are also many outdoor activities to do in this beautiful town.

It is located on the banks of the Gauja River, so kayaking, fishing, swimming and other activities around the river can be done here. Hiking trails can also be found along its meadows and forests leading up to magnificent views from surrounding hillsides or along cliff edges above winding rivers like those found in Gauja National Park which has become one of Latvia's top tourist spots.

For more cultural experiences head into old castles or explore ruins scattered around Sigulda’s vicinity that speak volumes about its fascinating history.

Kemeri National Park

Kemeri National Park provides a unique outdoor experience for adventurers. Located in the heart of Latvia, the park offers an incredible range of activities and attractions. Here, visitors can explore its stunning biodiverse environment including Kemeri Bog – Europe's giant marsh area as deep as a twelve-story building.

There is something for everybody; from boardwalk tours and mineral waters to therapeutic mud pools used for natural healing treatments to hiking trails with breathtaking views. Famous routes such as Slokas Lake walking trail will take you through forests, dunes, peat bogs and small villages provide plenty of opportunities for exploration in every direction! The park also provides cycling routes through wetlands and geologically rich areas along with bogshoe-hikes led by local experts lasting 2 to 4 hours available in Latvian, Russian or English languages perfect for adventure seekers looking to discover rarely seen places near Jurmala city center!

Remote hiking in Slitere National Park

Slitere National Park in the Courland Peninsula of Latvia provides a unique opportunity for nature lovers and adventurers alike to explore its untouched forests, rocky coastline and shimmering fishing villages.

From pine forests to calm, sandy beaches, Slitere offers hikers diverse landscapes that can be explored along various trails such as the Slītere Nature Trail starting at the lighthouse.

Here visitors can expect stunning views throughout their journey as they take in this remote corner of Latvia’s beauty and charm with its untainted wetlands teaming with wildlife and tranquil atmosphere.

Half-day Riga hiking adventure

Take a half-day walking adventure in Riga and explore the natural beauty that Latvia has to offer. This tour takes you on a guided walkway through bogs, forests and beaches along Nature Park Piejūra.

Three stops are included - beginning with a beautiful green coastal pine forest where you'll discovery Baltic Lagoons, wild shorelines and deserted islands. Next, you will take in beautiful views of the bay from atop "The Devil's Rock" as well as visit an ancient ogre village.

Finally, visitors can experience magical autumn moorlands just outside Riga city limits! With plenty of opportunity to appreciate nature's beauty along the way, this is one walking excursion not to be missed!

Coastal hiking tour

Latvia is an ideal destination for nature-loving adventure seekers. The country offers a range of hiking trails that will give tourists stunning views, fragrant pine forests, and tranquil lakeside walks.

Among the top list of outdoor activities to be explored in Latvia are its extensive coastal hikes with golden beaches, rolling dunes, and mesmerizing vistas - experiences unique to this country!

A must-do on any tourist's list is to take the Jurtaka Trail; a long coastline route offering hikers challenging terrain surrounded by breathtaking beauty. Here travellers can try their hand at exploring everything from remote woodlands to pristine bays complete with Baltic Sea waves lapping against white sand shores.

Those looking deeper into exploration can also look forward discovering overhead birdcalls, vibrant heather flowers swaying in the breeze or trails through peaceful pines all depending on where they choose for their path.

Water Adventures in Latvia

Experience Latvian nature in its full glory with adventures on the Gauja and Brasla rivers, Abava River Valley kayaking and hiking tour, as well as exploring the Baltic Sea coast with a unique latvian sauna ritual.

Kayaking on the Brasla and Gauja rivers

Exploring the beautiful rivers of Latvia through kayaking is a unique adventure that no traveler should miss. With its 280-mile long Gauja River, the country has become one of the best destinations for water activities and nature exploration in Europe.

Experienced kayakers can take on this challenge while beginners can opt for easy routes along the riverbanks with numerous rapids and thrilling currents to experience a memorable journey during their visit in Latvia.

The Gauja River takes an attractive circle through Bicycle Country or Vidzeme region with interesting historical points, caving systems, picturesque views, awesome forests, dozens of ports to stop at – perfect spots for outdoor activities like canoeing, bird watching and camping available as well as various wilderness areas nearby waiting to be explored.

Abava River Valley kayaking and hiking tour

Take a journey down the Abava River Valley with an unforgettable kayaking and hiking tour in Latvia. Discover 6 to 9-mile long stretches of mesmerizing waters, pristine riverside paths and forests teeming with wildlife during this one-of-a-kind adventure.

Enjoy untamed nature as you lounge in hot springs, bask amidst picturesque rocky gorges or cast your line into crystal clear streams. Whether you are an experienced paddler or simply seeking some tranquility away from city life, the Abava River Valley offers something for everyone no matter what their skill level may be.

Along the way explore little known caves and ruins that can't be found anywhere else in Eastern Europe – it's truly a unique experience!

Exploring the Baltic Sea coast

For those looking for an adventure, Latvia's Baltic Sea coast offers a captivating experience with its picturesque beaches, tranquil forests, camping spots, and unique lighthouses.

Hike along some of the best trails in the area while knowing that you are able to camp anywhere and everywhere or stay at designated sites. Get lost in conversation among calm surroundings as you admire far-reaching panoramas and discover ancient wooden towers by hand.

The coastal cities offer plenty of discoveries without the hassle of long drives thanks to neighboring countries such as Estonia and Lithuania allowing travelers to explore new places.

Unique Latvian sauna ritual

Exploring Latvia is an adventure in itself! For the traveler seeking a deeper cultural experience, exploring the ancient Latvian sauna ritual stands out as something truly extraordinary.

Believed to enhance one's physical, mental and spiritual health by utilizing the gifts of nature, saunas have been practiced for centuries and are deeply rooted in traditional culture.

Rather than just serving as cleansing purposes, bathhouses held social importance – they were places where people would gather to talk about life’s challenges and celebrate their happiness together.

As part of this longstanding tradition dating back to the 19th century when each farmstead had its own bathhouse, today visitors taking part in this unique experience can enjoy some time-honored activities that include birch whisking and splashing with cold water from nearby natural bodies after spending enough time relaxing in a hot atmosphere.

To really get immersed into this incredible culture there are ample opportunities like experiencing a transformative bonding experience among family friends or joining customers on local visits inside traditional shared spaces undertaken with all the necessary etiquette involved.

Family-Friendly Adventures in Latvia

From discovering the beauty of Gauja National Park on a guided one day hiking tour, to experiencing Latvian saunas and customs along with unique travel tips, there are many family-friendly adventures to be had in Latvia.

One day hiking tour in Gauja National Park

is an adventure lover's dream come true. This tour encompasses a stunning 7 km hiking trail amidst unspoilt nature and takes you to the magical 10,000-year-old Devil’s Cave. Along the way, visitors will be able to take in the incredible nature of Gauja National Park with its pristine forest and untouched fauna and flora.

The local tour operator, i-Da Adventures, provides valuable guidance during the whole trip allowing families or solo adventurers to enjoy this amazing journey while staying safe. With plenty of cultural activities on offer along the route such as guided historical walks around ancient Dikli Castle ruins visitors are certain to have an unforgettable experience that culminates with views over lush forestry and countryside landscapes reminiscent of a fairytale setting!

Latvian saunas and local traditions

Latvian saunas, known as pirts, have a long and storied connection to country’s culture. Originating in the 19th century, the pirt is an integral part of many people's lives to this day – acting both as a place for healing, relaxation, rejuvenation and cultural immersion.

The Latvian ritual involves more than simply sitting in a wooden chamber of hot steam – it is closely connected to nature with traditional folk music accompanying sessions and natural herbs used for relaxant scents.

Popular amongst locals for their relaxing effects, visitors will find these unique experiences offer respite from the everyday hustle and bustle while immersing them in energetic local culture that could only be experienced through traditional Latvian practices.

Book options for tours and adventures

From exploring Latvia's spectacular natural beauty with hikes to Sigulda and Kemeri, river kayaking, Baltic Sea coast excursions and Latvian sauna rituals - there are plenty of ways to make the most of your journey.

Visitors can take advantage of top-rated and best-reviewed tours that will bring out the adventurer in them. Riga also offers a great variety of educational activities such as the Kemeri National Park Bog Trail where visitors can learn about biodiversity first hand or experience unique experiences such as the Latvian Wine Adventure which takes travelers on a culinary tour through centuries of tradition using local ingredients paired with award winning wines.

There are various book options for tours and adventures in Latvia so travelers can pick their perfect adventure!

Customer reviews and feedback

Travelers looking for an adventurous and memorable experience in Latvia can gain valuable insights by reading customer reviews. Reviews from previous visitors of the country provide honest and reliable information about everything, from must-visit places to activities, tour operators, accommodations, restaurant recommendations, best time for a certain activity or season etc. This helps travelers plan their trip with more confidence and make informed decisions on which experiences to prioritize when visiting Latvia.

For example; according to one Tripadvisor review “Latvians have more traditional saunas than any other country!!” - this informative recommendation helped a traveler better understand Latvian culture and traditions through experiencing it first hand first-hand via the unique sauna rituals offered in Latvia.

Similarly customer feedback such as ‘an unforgettable adventure at Riga Zoo’ effectively incentivizes travelers to include it in their itinerary when visiting the capital city Riga or planning a family friendly vacation! In essence these comments can provide travelers with valuable insight into aspects of traveling that many overlook while trying to distinguish between tourist attractions, thus broadening their understanding of travel experiences available in Latvia!


Latvia is the perfect adventure destination, offering travelers an array of activities from exploring its diverse natural beauty to visiting historical sites. From lush forested trails in Sigulda to breathtaking views at Rundale Palace and Museum , Latvia will not disappoint adventurers seeking new experiences.

Boasting sandy beaches on Liepaja's Baltic Sea Coast, kayaking down the Brasla river and Gauja National Park, indulging in a unique Latvian sauna ritual, or simply discovering Riga’s old town; there truly is something for everyone who visits this inspiring nation.

With these top 10 must-visit places — and so many more — it’s easy to appreciate why Latvia should be your next destination for exploration and discovery!

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