I never liked winter until I moved to Riga, Latvia. Sure, playing in the snow was fun as a kid, but digging out my car and commuting to work was another matter entirely. Teeth chattering behind the steering wheel, I dreamed of warmth and sunshine and planned my vacations accordingly. To say that I was worried about the long dark months of Northern European winter looming on the calendar was an understatement. I stocked up on gear and hoped that I’d survive the below zero temperatures. Then I arrived and found a charming old town and plenty of activities to help me enjoy even the most inclement weather. Still think it’s crazy to spend winter in Riga? These 50 photos should convince you otherwise!
But there’s more to the city than Old Town! Central Riga boasts a wealth of UNESCO-listed Art Nouveau architecture, elegant theaters and churches, and extensive parks just waiting to be explored.
If you ride tram 7 to the end of the line at Dole, there is a nice promenade along the Daugava River. Locals come here to enjoy sunny days and watch the city’s flock of swans glide effortlessly through the ice floes.
Across the river in Riga’s Agenskalns neighborhood, residents slide through a cross-country skiing course in Uzvaras Park and take refuge from the chill in the Latvian National Library.
Are you ready to experience winter in Riga?