airBaltic NFTs City Collection, Edition 14, Rīga

airBaltic – the world’s first airline to issue non-fungible tokens (NFTs), releases its next edition (#14) in airBaltic City collection. Each of the limited collector NFTs is a digital art piece showcasing an individual Airbus A220-300 with its registration and one of the most beloved cities of Latvia to promote tourism and Latvia in the world. Previous cities features have been KuldīgaCēsisAlūksneLiepājaBauskaSigulda, Jelgava, Ogre, Valmiera, Gulbene, Smiltene, Līvāni and Jūrmala. All airBaltic NFTs have been issued on the OpenSea marketplace and are placed in Metaverse 3D gallery.

Edition 14 is showcasing an individual Airbus A220-300 and Rīga.

airBaltic NFTs City Collection - Riga.gif


Discover Riga

Riga has been a favourite city of travellers for centuries. Historically, it has always moved in step with the culture, fashion, and architecture of major European metropolises; today, it elegantly combines a modern Baltic lifestyle with more than 800 years of history. If you look closely, you’ll notice that Riga’s oldest wooden houses blend charmingly with its magnificent Art Nouveau buildings and majestic central boulevards. Museums, theatres, and concert venues beckon visitors seeking cultural enrichment, while restaurants, parks, and a variety of entertainment options inspire them to enjoy life. Here we offer a classic guide to Riga for the sophisticated traveller who wishes to see the highlights and the best of the city.



Where to find history

We know that guided city history tours can sometimes be tiring and time-consuming. If you’re the kind of person who likes to plan your own time, we recommend a visit to the Museum of the History of Riga and Navigation instead of a guided tour. It presents unique artefacts from Riga’s history, including 18th-century clothing and the first-known panorama image of Riga, dating to 1547. The museum itself is located in the Old Town, within the majestic Riga Cathedral and monastery ensemble, the largest and one of the oldest sacred sites in the Baltics from the medieval period.

View from St. Peter’s Church

Photo by Giovanni Colombo on Instagram



Must-see site

At the place where the beautiful Old Town meets Brīvības Iela (Riga’s main street), stands a 42-metre-tall granite and copper statue called Brīvības Piemineklis, or the Freedom Monument. It was unveiled on November 18, 1935, and erected in honour of all those who lost their lives in the Latvian War of Independence. The 56 individual sculptures around the base of the monument symbolise Latvian statehood, national unity, independence, and freedom.

The Freedom monument

Photo by Live Riga

The unveiling date was no coincidence – November 18 is the anniversary of the proclamation of the Republic of Latvia. In other words, it’s Latvia’s birthday. The monument was funded by citizens’ donations collected throughout the 1920s. Many families still have their original certificates of donation, preserved in albums as cherished mementos of the past.

The Freedom monument

Photo by Herman Petkevich on Instagram



Worth noticing

An observant visitor to Riga will notice the roosters sitting at the very top of church towers in the Old Town. They’ve been a symbol of the city for centuries. Made of wood or metal, currently the most ornate roosters can be found on the tower of the city’s oldest church, Riga Cathedral, as well as St. Peter’s Church, St. John’s Church, and St. Jacob’s Cathedral. According to Christian tradition, the rooster vigilantly guards against evil, and with his crowing in the morning he can even scare away the Devil himself. More practically, a rooster at the top of a tower can act as a weather vane and show the direction of the wind. This latter aspect was particularly important in Riga, a port city, and therefore all of the churches closest to the Daugava River have roosters at the top of their towers. Incidentally, the tower of St. Peter’s Church, which is the highest in Riga, provides one of the most impressive views of the city.

St. Peter’s Church

Photo by Egīls Baumanis on Instagram



What to do

Night kayak tour in Riga

Photo by Mārtiņš Plūme

Getting to know the city from its rivers and canal ensures not only breathtaking views but also relaxation and solitude. What else does one need for a perfect evening or vacation? Riga is especially beautiful when seen from a kayak or SUP board at sunset. One of your surest partners in this endeavour is Rīgas Laivas, whose instructors have been paddling along the city’s waters since 2010. Let the professionals help you choose the most suitable route, and then relax on the water.

Kayak tour in Riga

Photo by Mārtiņš Plūme


Where to hear legends

With its imagery, mood, artistry, and power of expression, Art Nouveau is one of the most striking phenomena in the art and architecture of the 20th century. And, with approximately 40 percent of the buildings in its central district reflecting this magnificent style, Riga is one of the most vivid Art Nouveau cities in Europe. Alberta iela – the street that is also home to the Riga Art Nouveau Centre – is particularly wonderful. The centre and its museum are located in the apartment where the great Latvian architect and Art Nouveau master Konstantīns Pēkšēns (1859–1928) lived and worked. A rarity in Europe, it displays early-20th-century interiors and original artefacts that were typical in the homes of Riga residents at the time.

Alberta street - Art Nouveau

Photo by Live Riga



Where to find the best view


Photo on Instagram

Experienced travellers know that one of the most breathtaking ways to get to know a city is seeing it from a bird’s perspective. To that end, Riga’s rooftops and top floors have become popular places for people to enjoy the city’s atmosphere. A perennial favourite is the stylish Skyline Bar, which offers fantastic views of the city from the 26th floor of the Radisson Blu Latvija Conference & Spa Hotel.

Best view to Riga - Skyline bar

Photo on Instagram

Those who want to see beyond classic, central Riga ought to try out the Minox premium cocktail bar. Located on the 14th floor of the Teodors building, Minox is part of the vibrant Jaunā Teika urban development and is known for hosting great performances by jazz musicians. For a relaxing moment in the very heart of Riga, make a pit stop at one of the restaurants or bars on the rooftop terrace of the Galleria Riga shopping mall, such as Herbārijs, which resembles a lush, plant-filled oasis and serves delicious, refreshing cocktails.

Best view to central Riga - Herbārijs

Photo on Instagram



Where to enjoy culture

The origins of opera in Latvia may be traced back to the 18th century. Thanks to this long-standing tradition, today you can expect top-class opera and ballet performances at the Latvian National Opera and Ballet. As you enjoy the splendid performance, take a look around at the interior, too. Constructed in 1863, the building is considered one of the most ornate examples of 19th-century architecture in Riga. But that status also calls for a certain dress code. When Rigans go to the opera or ballet, they still dress up.

Latvian National Opera and Ballet

Photo on Instagram

If you’re more interested in visual art, a peaceful Sunday at the Latvian National Museum of Art can give you the needed dose of inspiration. The recently reconstructed museum, and especially its light-filled upper floor, has become a favourite not only with art lovers but also as a setting for professional photographers and, of course, with Instagram influencers. There are always several exhibitions going on at the museum.

Latvian National Museum of art

Photo on Instagram



Where to get adrenaline

Explore Riga with roadgames
Photo by Herman Petkevich on Instagram

The Roadgames adventure and orienteering app is a great find for those who are curious and love outdoor activities. By completing its various tasks, you also get to know different parts of Riga. How to play? Download the app, select a game, do the challenges individually or in a team, and compete. The tasks and challenges will take you to places you never knew existed and thus sharpen your attention to detail.



Where to go with children

The largest and oldest zoo in the Baltics has been delighting and educating the very young since 1912. Surrounded by noble pines and set on the shores of a lake, the Riga Zoo is located in one of Riga’s greenest districts, Mežaparks. Don’t miss the zoo’s most popular inhabitants – last year’s newborn lions Teika and Varis. Their birth was a big event, because African lions are considered a ‘vulnerable species’ on the IUCN Red List and their survival in the wild is threatened in many places.

Riga zoo

Photo on Instagram

If the younger members of your family are more interested in technical things, dive into the Riga Motor Museum. It hosts the largest collection of antique motor vehicles in the Baltics. The exhibition is organised in the form of an exciting interactive story about unique vehicles, notable persons, and significant events in the history of the automotive industry, complemented by modern multimedia technologies. It promises an exciting day for all!

Riga motor museum

Photo by Live Riga



Where to enjoy nature

Enjoy nature in Riga parks - Bastejkalns

Photo by Live Riga

The best place to seek out green zones in Riga is near old manor houses. As far back as the 15th–17th centuries, the wealthier residents of the city established manors in the fields and meadows across the river from central Riga, in the area now known as Pārdaugava. In later years, these properties were used as summer residences. Eventually, the modern city encroached on these buildings, but the charm of the old days can still be felt in Pārdaugava. The rich Botanical Garden of the University of Latvia is also set on the site of a former manor and encompasses its orangeries, parks, and orchards. The Butterfly House, which features magnificent butterflies from South America and elsewhere, exudes a particularly exotic aura.

Enjoy nature in botanical garden in Riga

Photo on Facebook



Where to dine

Want to try a salted pickle, smoked fish, or other local delicacy? Then head to Riga Central Market, one of the city’s liveliest places for almost 100 years. Opened in 1930 and housed in distinctive pavilions that once served as dirigible balloon hangars, the market still pulses with the rhythms of different flavours, cultures, and peoples.

Riga central market

Photo by Live Riga

A must for restaurant-goers is a visit to the three-chef restaurant Tam labam būs augt (meaning ‘The good must grow’). This is the place to taste the flavours of modern Latvia. Top Latvian chefs, seasonal produce, and a wonderful atmosphere are just a few of the phrases that describe this gourmet favourite.

3 chefs restaurant in Riga - Tam labam būs augt

Photo on Facebook



Where to stay

Just as with excellent coffee places and restaurants, Riga can’t complain about the choice of high-quality hotels. If you love a good story and good design, check out the A22 hotel perfectly located in the Quiet Centre, Riga’s most elegant neighbourhood. In this design- and experience-led boutique hotel, 21st-century chic meets classic 1960s design, serving as a reminder of the fact that one of America’s greatest presidents, John F. Kennedy, once stayed in this building.

Where to stay in Riga - a 22 hotel

Photo on Instagram


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