The first, indelible impression that most visitors get of the Latvian capital is its majestic skyline, as viewed from the left bank of the Daugava River.
Travelers visiting Riga will find a breathtaking range of architectural styles in the historical center. After all, Riga is more than 800 years old. And each century has left its marks in the architecture in the Old Town and City Center, where the cultural heritage coexists with the quick pace of modern living.
This is not for no reason that Riga is known as the pearl of architecture: a city in which one can see together in one place, churches that were built at the city’s very origin, the medieval buildings of the Old Town as well as wooden architecture which has survived for centuries. Furthermore, Riga’s wealth of Jugendstil or Art Nouveau buildings, complete with their fantastically ornate flourishes, stands out as unparalleled anywhere in the world.
Proud of its heritage, Riga is a thoroughly modern city with a highly developed infrastructure and opportunities for a variety of activities. Leisurely shopping in the Old Town takes visitors from art galleries settled in narrow streets and little shops selling souvenirs, to Riga’s revitalized Warehouse District which hosts one of the city’s most awaited flea market.
Twice a month, treasure hunters and vintage oddities enthusiasts gather in Riga’s revitalized Warehouse District (Spīķeri quarter) in the neighborhood of the Central Market for some fun alternative shopping. The Spikeri district has served since the 14th century, as a huge warehousing area, where cargo was loaded and unloaded before being traded in Riga. Therefore the Spikeri district is pretty familiar with this trading spirit.
Nowadays, the renovated brick buildings surrounding the Spīķeri Flea Market are home to a variety of shops, galleries and cafés. And on flea market days, visitors can buy antiques, vintage furniture, retro clothing, vinyl records, jewelry, and other knick-knacks.