Riga winter guide

It’s not going to be a love at first sight. Instead, like in many great love stories, the affection will grow slowly. There will be some gloomy days, but they will be eked out with a plethora of magical moments, like walking in snow-covered stillness in one of the city’s parks, taking a window seat at a café and huddling over a hot drink while it’s snowing outside and revelling in all the fun outdoor activities the winter weather has to offer.

Taste of winter in a restaurant

It's no secret that love goes through the stomach. Use the chance this year as well and visit the best restaurants in Riga to take advantage of their unique holiday and winter specials. Traditional Latvian food or classic European cuisine influenced by many global cuisines can help you better overcome the outdoor frost and will be able to warm even the most sceptics of the wintertime. When you enter the snowy Vērmanes garden, go to the Whitehouse restaurant to warm up, but in the small and cozy streets of Old Riga, the masterpiece of modern Latvian cuisine, the 3 Chef's restaurant and the excellent seafood restaurant Barents, are hidden. A charming view of the Opera House and the canal side will open up when you visit the Stage 22 restaurant, while the John restaurant will please both your eyes and your taste buds in the Quiet Center.

Enjoy live music evenings

In autumn, life in Riga is bubbling in the indoor spaces of bars, restaurants and hotels, where those gathered can enjoy charming evenings of live music and who knows, maybe even show off their moves on the dance floor! Jazz lovers are invited to go to the concert venue M/Darbnīca, where talented artists perform several times a week, while free jazz concerts are held in the Radisson Blu lobby bar every Thursday from 20:00 to 22:00. Fun and Latvian-inspired dance and live music evenings are regularly held in the "Ala Pagrabs" Folk Club, while in the "Biedrība" club and the "Sidrērija" bar you can enjoy various concerts - from romantic acoustic to country music concerts. Find out about other current events by going to the Events section of the LiveRiga website.

Warm up with coffee and cakes

There is nothing more pleasant than than biting into a warm, freshly baked bun, a melt-in-your-mouth cake or enjoying a cup of hot coffee on a cold winter's day. Take a breather and make yourself more comfortable in one of Riga's pastry shops - find excellent meringue delicacies and other masterpieces at the Bezē pastry shop, but if you're in Old Riga, grab a fabulously delicious crumble cake at Crumble Cake. You can enjoy more classic as well as unusual flavors at Kūkotava. As for sweets, the word in town is that Mīkla bakery's almond croissants are unimaginably delicious.

Wake up your body with a winter swim

Word around town is that diving into ice-cold water is good for your immunity. Join the local "polar bear swims" and get your body an extra dose of adrenaline! In the Lucavsala Bay swimming area, where special consideration has been given to the well-being of winter swimmers, you can experience a revitalizing dose of cold.

Pampering spa treatments

During the dark, cold months of the year, self-care is doubly important. Warm up your body for the remaining winter months in one of Riga SPA centers. From a soothing treatment at the Wellton SPA Riverside spa to luxurious services at the Taka SPA and Kempinski Spa and total satisfaction in the extensive variety of ESPA Riga.

Enjoy skating and skiing in the city

Riga is waiting for your mastery of winter sports, so get your skis and ice skates ready! When snowy weather sets in, the annual "Winter Activity Park" at the Mežaparks Great Bandstand will be open on weekends, ski paths will be set up in 3 different Riga neighborhoods - Lucavsala, Uzvaras park and Biķernieku forest, and an ice rink in Purvciems will please both city residents and tourists!

Enjoy the magic of opera and ballet

One of the most magnificent places to enjoy culture during the winter is definitely the Latvian National Opera. In January, the repertoire will continue to please with the excellent ballet show "The Nutcracker", which every visitor should see at least once in their life, but those who have already seen this show will have plenty of other opera and ballet performances to choose from. You can learn more about other performances by visiting our Events section.

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