The different faces of Riga
Riga Travel Blog› entry 3 of 9 › view all entries
This morning I bought some breakfast in the supermarket. I tried to get some bread with something sweet and some milk, but I really couldn’t make sense of the language so I just tried something. The bread turned out to be with salmon, and the milk turned out to be yoghurt, heheh.
There is more to see in Riga than just the old town, and today I would discover some other places. I walked out of the center into the newer districts and the first thing I encountered was the Freedom Monument. The Latvians seem really happy with this monument and I saw that they sell miniature versions of it in souvenir shops. On top there is a statue of a woman holding three stars, and I am told that these stars symbolize three regions of the nation.
The old town is ringed by a couple of parks, and the park just outside the main entrance to the old town has a very beautiful Russian Orthodox cathedral. This is the first time in my life that I see an orthodox cathedral and I really like the style. Of course I have seen many pictures of orthodox churches and they all seem very colorful and detailed and none are exactly alike. I thought this cathedral was very beautiful, with colored rings around it, and the domes had golden stripes that glittered in the sunlight. Inside the walls were painted with icons and they used a lot of blue, yellow and gold paint. There were many Russian tourists and I noticed that many women who enter wear headscarves.
One thing that Riga is apparently known for, is German Art Nouveau (Jugendstil).
Riga is cut in two halves by the Daugava river, and tourists hardly ever go to the other side, so I went there. On this side of the river there is mainly asphalt, exhaust fumes and large grassy parks. It is a gritty neighborhood to walk around. There is a big Soviet monument at the end of the road, for the soldiers of the Red Army who fell against Germany in Latvia.
I had really walked a lot that day and I was developing a blister. It was very hot outside and my feet and legs hurt. I really needed to take it easy and let my body recover for the rest of the trip. I pushed myself too far today. As a tourist you’re just very focused and you want to take it all in. I’m completely exhausted.
I had planned a hike tomorrow. I am still going to do it.