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Things to do in

Riga

Latvia’s capital combines diverse architecture, a historical old town, and a thriving culinary scene.

Our most recommended things to do in Riga

Riga Sightseeing Tour by Canal Boat

1. Riga Sightseeing Tour by Canal Boat

Climb aboard an eco-friendly canal boat to see the sights of Riga from a different perspective as you cruise along the Daugava River. Escape the crowds of the city center as you set sail from the pier by the Freedom Monument at the 18th-century fortifications known as the Triangula Bastion (Bastejkalns). Glide gently under historic bridges and see landmark attractions such as the elegant home of the Latvian National Opera, Europe's largest market and bazaar at Riga Central Market and the UNESCO World Heritage monuments of the Spīķeri Quarter.  Get amazing views of the Vecrīga district (Old Riga) as you cruise towards the Riga Passenger Terminal and Yacht Club Andrejosta. Make your way back towards the departure point and get stunning views of Kronvalda Park and the Latvian National Theatre.

Riga: Red Bus Hop-on-hop-off Grand Tour

2. Riga: Red Bus Hop-on-hop-off Grand Tour

The double-decker buses depart from the Town Hall Square between 9:45 AM-4: 45 PM daily. There are 11 main stops and around 16 additional stops along the routes. In this package deal, two tours are included. This pass allows you to make the most of the hop-on-hop-off tour style with within a 2 day period. The Green tour runs through two districts. First, the bus goes to Pardaugava, an area which overlooks ancient cathedrals on the left bank of the river Daugava. Next, the bus travels toward the city centre where many of the cities main attractions are located. You will pass the Boulevard Ring, see the famous Monument of Freedom, the Opera House, the Powder Tower, and much more. The Blue tour also traverses two districts. You'll get the chance to see a range of architectural styles, from Romantic facades to decorative Art Nouveau. Then, in the district of Moscow suburb, you'll see Riga’s Central Market, the Speakers Quarter and the famous Stalin High-rise All tours feature pre-recorded commentary broadcast via headphones in 10 languages of your choice: Russian, Latvian, English, German, Swedish, Norwegian, Finnish, Spanish, French, and Italian.

Riga: Entrance Ticket - House of the Black Heads

3. Riga: Entrance Ticket - House of the Black Heads

Wander through centuries in House of the Black Heads! Feel the magic atmosphere of luxurious halls of celebrations, decorated with brilliant chandeliers and a gallery of royal portraits. Explore the mysterious medieval cellars and elaborate historical rooms with a surprising silverware collection. For the past 700 hundred years, the House of the Black Heads has pleased and enraptured inhabitants and guests of Riga. This is one of the most magnificent buildings in Riga, preserving both the unique historic heritage of the legendary Brotherhood of Black Heads and the history of Riga. For centuries House of the Black Heads was the cultural epicenter of Riga, gathering the most respectable inhabitants of Riga and their guests, during celebrations organized by the Black Heads and their successors. This building, which is situated in the heart of Old Riga, is the symbol of Riga and among the central premises of representation of Riga – not for nothing also the President of Latvia has chosen House of the Black Heads as his temporary residence for almost four years!

Riga: Private Tour with a Local Guide

4. Riga: Private Tour with a Local Guide

Meet the local guide at your Riga accommodation and head out on a walking tour to explore the city. You’ll be in good hands with a knowledgeable local who is eager to share all the tips and tricks that will help you make the most of your visit. Start by getting familiar with the neighborhood where you’re staying. Hear about the best places to eat and shop and learn the easiest ways to get around. On this customized tour you’ll see some of the top attractions and hear about more that you can visit on your own after the tour. By the end of the tour, you'll feel more comfortable navigating the city and confident you have all the information you need.

Riga: 2-Day Hop-On Hop-Off Tour

5. Riga: 2-Day Hop-On Hop-Off Tour

Take advantage of a 2-day ticket to the Riga hop-on and hop-off sightseeing tour bus, and see all of the city’s attractions on one easy tour. You can take the full city tour which consists of 4 different lines and takes about 1 hour and 40 minutes. As you tour, an audio guide will provide an informative commentary in 10 languages. Get excellent views of city attractions as you cruise, such as the Freedom Monument, Riga Castle, Orthodox Cathedral, former KGB Headquarters, churches, embassies, and other significant sites. Stops include: • Town Hall Square • National Opera Building • Art Nouveau District • Hotel Latvija • Central Railway Station • Central Market • Riga Ferry Terminal

From Riga: Day Trip to Jurmala with A Guide

6. From Riga: Day Trip to Jurmala with A Guide

Your driver will pick you up from your hotel in Riga and drive you for 20km to the famous resort town of Jurmala.  Admire the boundless golden beaches, pine forests and blue sea as you take in the fresh air. Spend the day exploring the cozy European town composed of traditional Latvian houses situated amongst parks and forests. Discover the wooden country houses built in the art nouveau styule of the early 20th century as well as modern cottages.  Your driver will return you to your accomodation in Riga. 

Riga Highlights Self-Guided Scavenger Hunt and Walking Tour

7. Riga Highlights Self-Guided Scavenger Hunt and Walking Tour

Get to know Riga at your own pace on this interactive scavenger hunt walking tour played on your phone. Decipher riddles, interact with the most important attractions of the city, and unlock interesting facts.  After downloading the scavenger hunt tour on your mobile device (via a link and login credentials received upon booking), use the mobile app and integrated maps to reach 10 of Riga’s most important attractions on foot. At each stop, learn about the attraction and solve a location-based riddle that can only be solved if you reach the specific location. Use logic, imagination, observation, and team spirit to unlock the correct code and reveal the next destination of the tour. As you walk through the city, enjoy the flexibility to pause your game at any time to take a break, snap the perfect photos, stop for lunch, or visit a museum. Choose to continue the tour later or save the rest for another day. Start the activity anytime, the schedule is indicative. Start your tour at the imposing Latvian National Museum of Art! Visit the Freedom Monument a symbol of Riga. Learn about Laimas Pulkstenis this magnificent watch with rare architecture and admire the Powder Tower which is one of the oldest in Europe. The Swedish Gate will surprise you, with its terrible legend. Visit the oldest housing complex the unique aesthetics. Then Riga Castle awaits you, don't forget to take pictures! Riga Cathedral will leave you speechless with its magnificent interior and exterior. Admire the House of the Blackheads with its unique colors and architecture. The icing on the cake of this unique tour will be St. Peter's Church, which will mark you for the rest of your life with the unique view from its tower.

Riga Classical Old Town 2-Hour Walking Tour

8. Riga Classical Old Town 2-Hour Walking Tour

Discover Old Town Riga on a 2-hour walking tour through the historic and geographical center of the city. Listen as your guide tells you the real stories and legends of the Old Town and points out the sights of interest. First, visit the most impressive building in Riga; the House of Blackheads. It was completely destroyed during World War II and rebuilt in 1999. Then you will see the complex of living buildings known as "3 Brothers," considered the oldest stone building in Riga. Continuing your walk, pass by Riga Castle, Riga Cathedral, the Old City Wall and Swedish Gate, the Powder Tower, and even the Art Nouveau Cat House. When your tour ends, you will emerge with a greater understanding of and appreciation for the historic Old Town and the history of Riga itself.

Riga: Private Sigulda, Turaida, and Gauja National Park Tour

9. Riga: Private Sigulda, Turaida, and Gauja National Park Tour

Embark on a personal and immersive adventure on a private van tour from Riga to Sigulda and Turaida. Customize your itinerary to your preferences and visit sights such as Gauja National Park, Sigulda Manor and Castle, and Turaida Castle. Sit back and relax in the comfort of your private vehicle and watch the landscape change from city streets to lush greenery as you head out of Riga. Make your way to Sigulda, a town near the river Gauja that is also known as the Switzerland of Latvia by locals. Marvel at the Gauja valley with its dense forests, meandering river, and the Gauja National Park. Stop to stroll through the park before seeing the Sigulda Medieval Castle ruins, the new Sigulda Castle, the Turaida Castle museum with its watchtower peering above the trees, and Gutman's Cave, the widest and highest cave in the Baltic countries. Cross the river on the optional cable car ride for a different perspective of the region or enjoy a glass of local wine made in the Cremon Winery at Krimulda Manor. See local craftsmen and women at work to gain an insight into local and cultural life before heading back to Riga. This half day tour is a must for those who have visited Riga and Jurmala before and is especially recommended for bloggers and social media fans.

Riga: Culture and Food Tasting Tour

10. Riga: Culture and Food Tasting Tour

Explore three of Riga’s most essential districts on a half-day combined food tasting and cultural walking tour. Hear stories from the history of the city, and see the world’s largest collection of art nouveau architecture. Begin your tour in charming Old Riga, where the beautiful, centuries-old buildings speak extensively about Latvian culture - one of the oldest living cultures in the world. Highlights of Old Riga (also known as “Vecrīga”) include a reconstruction of the medieval city wall, Riga Cathedral, and the House of the Blackheads. Next, go to the remarkable Art-Nouveau district, where a local guide will explain more about the meaning of symbols hidden behind the beautiful façades. See masterpieces of art nouveau architecture at banks, offices and apartment blocks on almost every street corner. End with a food tasting tour of some typical local food in Riga Central Market. Sample mouth-watering, ecologically-grown local produce in the beautiful art deco and neoclassical market, Europe’s largest market and bazaar.

Frequently asked questions about Riga

What top attractions are a must-see in Riga?

What are the best day trips and excursions from Riga?

The best day trips and excursions from Riga are:

Jurmala

Other Sightseeing Options in Riga

Want to discover all there is to do in Riga? Click here for a full list.

What people are saying about Riga

Overall rating

4.5 / 5

based on 1,186 reviews

The Gauja National Park tour with Rolands was the highlight of our trip to the Baltics. Natural beauty, great food, and am amazing guide. Rolands really made it a special day for everyone, especially the kids... Not an easy task for any guide. Would definitely use i-Dā Adventures again!

Edita was very friendly, helpful and professional. Her knowledge of Soviet Latvia is second to none and provided a perfect pace and itinerary.

Easy way to get data. It was a cheaper and easier option than the stores where I was visiting.

Friendly outgoing guide fluent in English. Very good audio presentation.

Small boat, very personally briefly explained the tour.