Sigulda is considered to be one of Latvia’s most beautiful cities. It seems that a little bit of everything can be found here – culture, music, sports, nature, and recreation.
Since the 17th century, Sigulda has been chosen as a place to relax and nurture health by people from Russia, the Baltic countries, and other near and far places. Today, Sigulda is home to one of Latvia’s most prestigious hospitals whose services are also used by residents of many other countries. Traditions of good hospitality are still maintained within the city. The servicing personnel in hotels and restaurants, as well as the city’s residents themselves, speak several foreign languages (English, Russian, German). Enjoying a meal in the local cafes and restaurants is truly a flavorful experience, with options ranging from traditional Latvian food to gourmet delicacies of the world. Sigulda and the Riga – Gauja region is recognized as the 2017 European Region of Gastronomy. It is very easy to feel at home here while experiencing a peaceful rehabilitation process.
The city is located 53 km from the capital city of Riga, and it was Riga’s partner city as European Capital of Culture in 2014. Sigulda is easily accessible by public transportation and of course by personal automobile. The picturesque city, which is especially popular in the fall when mother nature transforms the trees into an array of golden yellow, orange, and red tones, is located by the Gauja River and features building nuances that are reminiscent of the Swiss Alps.
Nature lovers will be pleased by walks in the Gauja National Park, which is Latvia’s largest and oldest national nature park. The territory features unique landscapes and Latvia’s largest rock exposures – sandstone precipices, cliffs, and caves, as well as culturally historic treasures that are rich with legends and fairy tales. The national park has more than 500 cultural and historical monuments – castle mounds, stone castles, churches, manor houses, water mills and wind mills, and other archeological, architectural, and artistic monuments. One of the most legendary and beautiful places in Sigulda is Turaidas Castle and the love story about the Turaida rose. Gutman’s Cave is located adjacent, a cable car traverses through the air over the Gauja River, but the most active travelers can enjoy the obstacle courses that are suspended in the trees at the Mezakakis Adventure Park. Let’s not forget the colorful hazelnut walking stick, which has become the symbol of Sigulda.
In Latvia, winter sports are also directly related to Sigulda. The bobsleigh track offers international competitions in luge racing (bobsleigh and skeleton), while you can test your downhill and cross country skiing abilities at the skiing tracks. In the summer, the Opera Festival in the Sigulda castle ruins gathers classical music enthusiasts. Bungee jumping, “Aerodium” – a vertical wind tunnel, which became world famous after the Turin Olympics, Folk Song Hill, the concert hall “Baltais flīģelis” (The White Grand Piano), and the Kremerata Baltica festival – the special reasons why Sigulda is the real place for relaxation and health improvement. Tourism routes for relaxation and recreation can be found on the website of the Sigulda Tourism Information Center – tourism.sigulda.lv