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Latvia may not be a well known European hotspot, but the harmony between its unique cities and neighbouring woodland means it probably should be. Nestled between its Baltic brothers, Lithuania and Estonia, the country also has a long northern border with the Baltic Sea.

Much of the popular tourist area is based around the thriving capital Riga. The sandy beaches, unusual architecture and lively cosmopolitan attitude are something of a rare combination in this part of Europe.

Latvia is a country still attempting to distance itself from its Soviet past. The people here are fiercely proud of their history but also excited by the prospect of building a new, dynamic country.

The proximity to the Baltic Sea gives Latvia something of a maritime climate. The summer season tends to be warm and dry, especially by the coast. Most activities here are best enjoyed between the months of May and September. Although some snow sports are only available in the winter months.

Outside of Riga and the metropolitan centre, Latvia is a country covered in dense forest and rural beauty. An extensive network of rivers reaches throughout the countryside, providing not only attractive views, but also opportunities for water-based adventures.

Classic Itineraries

Start your Latvian adventure in Riga. The Art Nouveau architecture and buzzing nightlife are a draw for all tourists. Thrill seekers, however, can find plenty of activities to get their adrenaline pumping. Try Go Karting, or even skydiving.

You only have to travel a little way out of the capital to find natural beauty and more opportunity for adventure sports. Picturesque town Sigulda is the famous gateway to Gauja National Park. Here you can canoe and kayak down the winding river, and cycle or trek through the unspoiled wilderness.

Head north to Salacgriva and youêll find sandy beaches, perfect for enjoying the Baltic Sea and summer sunshine.

Other Activities

Watersports junkies can rejoice; kitesurfing, water skiing, wakeboarding and more are available on the northern shores. Youêll want to go in the summer though as Latviaês winters get pretty cold.

If you do decide to venture to Baltic Europe in the colder months, youêll find excellent snow for skiing and snowboarding. Latvia isnêt mountainous, but there are plenty of locations suitable for a good skiing trip.

And remember, you donêt have to spend all your time pushing yourself to the limit; horse riding and trekking are also available.

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