Everyone visiting Riga for the first time should start by visiting the city’s main landmarks. It is best to start getting to know the city's more than 800-year history with a walk through the Old Town and continue in the so-called quiet center district of Riga, enjoying the magnificent Art Nouveau architecture. Culture and art lovers should definitely plan a visit to the Latvian National Museum of Art and the Latvian National Opera and Ballet. For those who enjoy the city through food, the list of places to visit should definitely include the Riga Central Market and Kalnciems Quarter Market. The more contemporary side of Riga is best enjoyed at the most important building constructed this century - the National Library of Latvia.
Riga Dome Cathedral
The foundation stone of Riga Dome Cathedral was laid on July 25, 1211. The last large-scale restoration took place in the late 19th century when the cathedral acquired its present appearance. Today, Riga Dome Cathedral holds services and provide for rich cultural life — various concerts of popular artists take place here.
St. Peter's Church
Riga's St.Peter's Church dominates the cityscape as the tallest spire, and as one of the oldest and most valuable monumental architecture edifices in the Baltic States from the Middle Ages. St.Peter's is the tallest of the Riga churches, a significant landmark, and a prime example of the 13th century Gothic style.
The Freedom Monument has been Riga's central landmark for almost a century. This 42.7 m tall granite and copper work of art is a symbol of the Latvian nation's striving for freedom and independence. The woman on top of the monument is holding up three golden stars, which represent Latvia's historical regions of Kurzeme, Vidzeme, and Latgale. The motto "For the Fatherland and Freedom" is inscribed upon the base. It was unveiled on 18 November 1935 and financed entirely from public donations.
Latvian National Opera and Ballet
Riga's White House — the Latvian National Opera and Ballet on Aspazijas bulvāris was opened in 1923; an average of six new productions are presented each year, retaining balance between opera and ballet. In total, the opera sees over 200 performances and several symphonic and chamber music concerts a season.
The oldest complex of dwelling houses in Riga was constructed in the 15th century. Their name — Three Brothers, was given a very long time ago and, according to a legend, the buildings were constructed by men from one family. Today, the premises house the Latvian Museum of Architecture and the State Inspection for Heritage Protection.
A unique 19th century's complex of wooden buildings is now renovated in Pārdaugava. A group of friends and associates are actively involved in a project of preserving the historic atmosphere of the quarter and adapting it to the dynamics of the 21st century. Buildings invite you to enjoy Latvian and European design, fairs, art exhibitions and workshops at court-yards. The quarter's special feature is old LADA cars to take you into the past.