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Destination Latvia

Riga, the capital

Riga (founded in 1198) is the largest town in the Baltics, an ancient hanseatic town on the banks of river Daugava. The Old Town with romantic Art Nouveau houses is an architectural enthusiast’s dream.

Highlights
The Monument of Freedom-symbol of Latvia’s independence
The Dome Cathedral with its famous organ (with 6718 pipes, one of the biggest in Europe)
St. John’s Church (1297) served as a Dominican abbey
St. Peter’s Church (13th c) one of the best samples of Gothic architecture in the Baltics (wonderful panoramic view)
Riga Castle (1209), the Powder Tower and the Swedish Gate are parts of Riga’s Citadel

Sightseeing options
Bus tour of Riga downtown – 1-2 hrs
Walking tour of Riga Old Town
Complete city tour of Riga -3-4 hrs, Combines the above mentioned bus and walking tour
Visit to the Dome Cathedral – ca 30min, entrance fee
Visit to St. Peters Church – ca 45 min, panoramic view from the tower, entrance fee
Visit to the House of the Blackheads – 45 min, the 14th century guild house, entrance fee
Open Air Ethnographic Museum – ca 2 hrs, Combines drive (30 min from Riga) and walking in the museum ca 1h

Rundale Palace – 77 km to the south of Riga, 1.5 hrs by bus

Highlights
A beautiful baroque palace built by Rastrelli, the architect of Winter palace in St. Petersburg. Splendidly decorated rooms, galleries and halls with paintings and furniture of 18th century. It is also a place where visiting art exhibitions and concerts are held.

Sightseeing options
Guided tour to the Rundale Palace – 6 hrs, includes drive from Riga and visit to the castle. Entrance fee. Guided tour of the palace takes 1-1,5 hrs. On the way from Riga to Rundale the city of Jelgava is passed. Outside inspection of Mezotne castle.

Sigulda – 53 km to the east of Riga, 1 hour driving by bus

Sigulda is a small town in the National Park around Gauja river. “Latvian Switzerland”.

Highlights
Ruins of 13th century Castle of the Order of Knights, the Bishop’s Turaida Castle.

Sightseeing options
Full day tour from Riga -5-7 hrs. The tour includes Sigulda town park and old castle ruins (1 hr), Turaida castle and park inside inspection (1,5 hrs). Both collect entrance fee. Gutmana cave 1h (walk in park), no entrance fee.

Cesis

One of the nicest small towns in Latvia, the birthplace of Latvian State Flag. 90 km to the east of Riga, 1,5 hrs by bus

Sightseeing options
A full day tour by bus from Riga – combines walking tour of town (ca 30 min), visit of new castle museum and yard of old castle (1,5 hrs) and on the back way visit of Araisi lake castle (45min).
Incentive lunch at Cesis Castle – 1,5hrs, personnel and waiters are dressed in XIV century outfit. The lunch starts with a reception ceremony according to ancient traditions, hosted by the mystical master of the castle. The master of the castle shows the guests around the castle in the lights of torches. The tour finishes with the meal in the courtyard or cellar (depending on the weather).

Information and bookings:

CWT Estonia Destination Services
Telephone: + 372 6 407 780
Fax: + 372 6 407 769
E-mail: incoming@carlsonwagonlit.ee