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Things to do in Gauja

Top recommendations from locals

From sightseeing to hidden gems, find out what makes the city unique with the help of the locals who know it best.
Park
“Gauja National Park is characterized by a high biological diversity, rock outcrops and varied terrain shapes, springs, picturesque landscapes and many historical and cultural monuments from different centuries. Gauja National Park is a state-level protected area that includes a large part of the territory of Sigulda and several neighbouring counties. It was established on 14 September 1973 and is therefore the first and the oldest national park in Latvia. It was established in order to protect slightly disturbed natural areas, promote nature tourism and ensure sustainable development in the area. National park is characterized by a high biological diversity, rock outcrops and varied terrain shapes, springs, picturesque landscapes and many historical and cultural monuments from different centuries. The major part of the national park and the dominant is the old valley of the Gauja River. The valley is protected and at the same time it can be used for nature and cultural history tourism, as well as healthy recreation. The area of the park is 91 745 ha and it is dividend into five functional zones. Nature reserves take up a rather small but at the same time very valuable part of the park and visits are prohibited to these areas. In the rest of the territory is allowed only such economic activities, which do not substantially change the historically developed structure of the landscape. Forests take up ~47 %, almost one half of the territory. There are almost 900 plant species, 149 bird and 48 mammal species found in the territory. Since 2004 Gauja NP is a part of Natura 2000 network as a territory, which is designed for conservation of protected species and biotopes.”
  • 6 locals recommend
Castle
“Turaida Castle is a recently reconstructed medieval castle in Turaida, in the Vidzeme region of Latvia, on the opposite bank of the Gauja River from Sigulda.”
  • 5 locals recommend
Administrative Area Level 1
“Sigulda is the most popular destination for locals during the fall to enjoy the golden seeneries. ”
  • 4 locals recommend
General Entertainment
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“They offer nice menu and you will always find nice and cosy atmoshere here.”
  • 5 locals recommend
Beach
“Nature is most appealing at the moments when it reveals its true colours - at sunrise, at sunset, during a storm, morning dew and the northern lights. I went to the White Dune at the end of October when the chilly mornings were showing the first signs of winter. The White Dune is a distinctive place. You can watch how Pēterupe River makes its way to the sea and hike along the well-equipped trails in the dunes. Each viewing platform offers slightly different scenery.”
  • 3 locals recommend
Health
“Aerodium is a really cool way of trying out free fall. For more info i suggest to google. It's located a bit of a drive away from Riga, near by a gorgeous city Sigulda, where people also travel to enjoy scenery mostly during the Fall (September, October)”
  • 7 locals recommend
Establishment
“The most visited museum in Latvia, with its expositions telling events of 1000 years. The medieval castle and church, the Gauja Livs, the ancient manor center and the Dainas Hill - each has its own story.”
  • 4 locals recommend
Nature Preserve
“Greatest obstacle park around! You should definitely try it :) + other activites for every person, age and interests.”
  • 4 locals recommend
Establishment
“Weil da kann man allein und auch in der Gruppe die Zeit im Winter und im Sommer gut verbringen”
  • 3 locals recommend
Performing Arts Venue
“Ancient castle and open air live concerts (Opera International Festival) in the castle in summer time, live classic concert and breakfast in the New castle. ”
  • 4 locals recommend
Café
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“Delicious cakes, coffee and food! Nice atmosphere on the outdoor terrace in summer and winter.”
  • 2 locals recommend
Place to eat
“Holding international and Latvian bobsleigh, skeleton and luge competitions. Providing training facilities for teams of different levels of Latvian sports federations and foreign athletes. Organising leisure rides.”
  • 7 locals recommend
Castle
“The castle complex with its historically romantic environment is a special fascination for both Cēsis people and visitors to the town. More than ten centuries of Latvian cultural history meets here, each with its own time, aura and message for today and the future. The castle complex is located in the very centre of the city, where in a small area a number of uniquely different historical areas intertwine. One of the most mysterious monuments of pre-crusader times is Riekstu Hill, a ancient hillfort once inhabited by Vendi tribe – the cradle of present day Cēsis. Right next to Riekstu Hill the castle built by the Livonian Brothers of the Sword and the Teutonic order is located. In the middle Ages it was one of the most important footholds for the Teutonic Order in the Baltics, but nowadays – most impressive and well preserved castle ruins in Latvia. In its turn, the castle manor complex dominated by the manor house together with May and Castle Park manifests the Romanticism movement of the 18th and 19th century. Since 2004 the castle complex had been managed by the municipality’sagency “Cēsis Culture and Tourism Centre”, whose mission is to preserve and develop Cēsis castle complex and integrate it in to an active tourism business. The Agency is also responsible for Cēsis History and Art Museum, the Tourism Development and Information Centre and Cesis Cultural Centre.”
  • 3 locals recommend
Museum
“If you want to explore more about Minhauzen, then you have to visit museum!”
  • 1 local recommends
Concert Hall
“Concert Hall houses Art gallery with frequently exhibiting famous Latvian artists. Concert hall is known for holding concerts of both Latvian and world-famous musicians. There is also a cinema in the building. ”
  • 2 locals recommend
Shopping Mall
“Shopping mall with grocery store "Rimi", pharmacy, pica place, toy and fashion stores and a small Latvian made product store - "Siguldas Pērle".”
  • 1 local recommends

Top restaurants

Beach Bar
“Great sunset view, tasty dishes, right next to beach volleyball courts, etc). Nice place for a dinner or drinks”
  • 2 locals recommend
Restaurant
“Great for lunch and dinners. Excellent menu! From city centre better accessible by car. ”
  • 1 local recommends
Pizza Place
“Pizza "LuLu" - nice, simple place, great pizzas. Operating 24h a day and offers delivery!”
  • 2 locals recommend
Restaurant
  • 1 local recommends
Restaurant
  • 1 local recommends
Restaurant
“Nice bistro, fast service: one can choose the dish straight from the frying pan :) A bit expensive, but the food is good. Perfect place for simple everyday lunch. ”
  • 3 locals recommend
Italian Restaurant
  • 1 local recommends

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