When entering Vidzemes or Matīsa Market from Brīvības Street, the first thing you see is the numerous mannequin legs with tights as if dancing the can-can. However, the first impression is misleading: the place has a slow and quiet rhythm. In the market pavilion, you can even hear the music of ringing cash registers mingling with the rhythmical sound of meat-slicing machines. Local farmers sell onion and garlic strings and freshly smoked meat.
Vidzeme or Matīsa Market dates back to the 1870s when it first developed around the bore-well or the Great Pump where New Gertrude's Church is located now. In October 1902, the market moved to its present premises - two pavilions and an administration office on the corner of Brīvības and Matīsa streets.
The Eclecticism-style buildings feature steel covering and frolicsome pediment. The meat pavilion was closed some time ago; in 2009 a fashion show by students of the Latvian Academy of Art was held in the premises. Now you will find meat in one room with pickled cucumbers and sauerkraut (with or without carrots or caraway-seeds). Here you can also buy pickled pieces of pumpkin floating in a container like in an aquarium.