08 June, 2015

Today’s post will explore three ways of how to explore Riga and its surroundings from three different points of view: Underground, on water and from above.

1. Underground

During the Cold War, only a select few knew what was hidden under the “Ligatne Rehabilitation Centre”. A vacation resort was built above ground during the 60s and the 70s. At the same time a bunker complex was built under ground, becoming operational in 1982.

The bunker is some 2000 square meter, and was supposed to serve as a command centre staffed by 250 persons in case of nuclear war. These 250 persons were supposed to be able to stay underground during 3 months in case of a nuclear blast. The complex includes two helicopter pads camouflaged as swimming pools and a small radio studio.

Visiting the complex is only possible with a pre-booked guided visit. The bunker is located in the small village of Skalupes, 50 km north-east from Riga. More info can be found here.

2. Water

One of my favourite ways of exploring a city is from a boat. Luckily, this is possible in Riga. Of course there are more traditional boat-tours, but I would suggest kayaking instead.

Kayaking allows you to decide the pace and route yourself. And let’s not forget that you’ll get some exercise at the same time. Most organizers of such tours can give you a small crash-course if this happens to be your first time in a kayak. I would not worry too much though, the canals of Riga are quite calm.

Kayaking operators are a plenty in Riga. I suggest you use google to find the one near you. Don’t forget to drink plenty of water and use sun-screen!

3. From above

Riga is home to the highest structure in the European Union, the 368 meter high Radio and TV Tower. At nearly 100 meters, there’s an observation platform. This platform is the highest structure in Riga open to the public.

A tour of the TV Tower and other “rooftops” will allow you to see Riga from another perspective. Also, it can give you access to places that otherwise are closed to the public.

Some tours even include a coffee break on one of the locations. Find out more here.

Photo by David Holt, used under CC-BY-SA 2.0

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