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From fairytale architecture and top museums to trendy restaurants and a thumping nightlife, Riga city breaks have a lot to pack in. The cosmopolitan capital of Latvia has a youthful energy best seen in its bustling bars, and a fascinating history that reveals itself in the city streets.
The Baltic bombshell boasts one of the largest Art Nouveau neighbourhoods in the world, with hundreds of buildings in the unique architectural style. Stroll through the winding lanes of the old town and you’ll find ancient churches, kooky theatres, and buildings topped with Gothic spires.
Its buildings aren’t the only place to see evidence of Riga’s cultural clout. A former European Capital of Culture, the city’s impressive museums range from the Latvian Museum of Art to the sobering Museum of the Occupation of Latvia. After delving into Riga’s absorbing history – which includes time under both Soviet and Nazi rule – pay a visit to the triumphant Freedom Monument.
For a taste of Riga’s transformation, look no further than its inventive dining scene. Restaurants offer everything from trendy experimental twists on classics to traditional cosy neighbourhood bistros serving Latvian fare such as wild catfish and cherry-heavy deserts. See the source of the impressive plates at the vast Central Market. Wander the stalls and try the freshest local delicacies or take some home to cook up yourself.
After your meal, see the city come alive in its pubs and clubs. Stag and hen parties flock to Riga for its cheap drinks as well as its wealth of swanky cocktail bars and craft beer pubs. When it’s closing time, move on to a bar playing live blues or rock or a hip club in a converted warehouse.
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