Things to do in Latvia…
Walking tour of Riga. Riga is always best experienced with a local expert as details of the Freedom Monument, Laima Clock and ruined old city walls offer an intriguing insight into Latvia’s capital city. Doma Cathedral, St Peter's Basilica and Riga Castle will all, no doubt, feature on a walking tour with free time in the Central Market a great chance to get haggling for souvenirs.
Taste the difference. Typical Latvian dishes are pork based and accompanied with heavy black bread, although, a recent trend towards promoting the country’s national identity through its food is starting to turn stereotypical Soviet style fodder into something much more, urm, foodie. Smoked fish, pickled veggies, fresh cheese and sklandrausis (sweet carrot pie) are all to be found in Riga’s markets and bakeries, alongside some seriously delicious saldējums (ice cream).
As Latvia forms the rather generous filling in the Baltic state sandwich, taking a tour which combines Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia is certainly a tasty prospect. Border controls are practically nonexistent and as the Euro is used throughout there’s no pesky currency conversion required when moving from one seaside village or capital city to the next. A tri-country tour is an excellent means of threading together the history of the region as well as discovering those fascinating cultural nuances that make each Baltic state completely unique.