Riga was one of the cities in my last trip in Europe. At first I hesitated between going to Russian or going to Riga. Then, I chose Riga because of the veritable Art Nouveau architecture. Another reason was I needed to apply visa to enter Riga while I did not need it for Russian. At that time I had Schengen visa which allowed me to enter Riga. So, I should make it worth.
It took me around 4 hours and a half from Tallinn to Riga by bus. From the map, Riga is a small city, so I just wandered around starting from my hostel.
Surprisingly, the first building caught my eyes was Tourist Information Centre. This is the most beautiful tourist information I have ever seen so far. Instead of just a typical building with a big “i” sign, here is the Riga Tourist Information Centre.
Then, I walked around in the old town area. Maybe because I came from the big city that we cannot walk to anywhere like Bangkok, I really enjoyed looking at all the lovely buildings and shops on foot. Oops, I have to tell you that I’ve been there during summer which, I think, is the best time to visit Latvia. I am not brave enough to go to northern Europe in winter.
From the old town area, I headed up to an area known as The Quiet Center – the Art Nouveau District. I was fascinated by the buildings around. Seeing them in the flesh was well worth it. Many buildings are located on Elizabetes and Alberta streets. I walked slowly from building to building to enjoy amazing architecture.
The only thing that made me depressed while I was in Riga was visiting museum of the occupation. This museum shows what happened in Latvia when it was occupied by Soviet Union and Nazi Germany. It reminded me of how people suffered during the wars. Even though this museum made me sad, I hope this kind of museum will always stand to educate people. So, we can learn from history!