Riga, Latvia

Monday, 29 July 2013

We thought Riga was lovely. The Old Town was again very pretty and we enjoyed the views from Saint Peter's Church. 

The BEST part about being in Riga during the first part of July was the Song and Dance Festival. Almost everyone in Latvia sings and they celebrate their heritage by dressing in their part of the country's authentic dress and singing folk songs and walking in a parade once a year. 

The Song and Dance Festival has been going on since the late 1800s and more than 40,000 march in the parade alone. Every evening when we went to dinner or stopped to have a Latvian beer on the patio, we were able to hear live music and sometimes watch folk dancing. We loved it and felt very lucky to be a part of such a special cultural event. 

My favorite part of Riga was a behind-the-scenes tour of the Latvian National Opera House! 

We learned about the music director, the renovation of the main theater and even sat in the President's box to see what his view of the stage would be (the seats in the center of the theater are actually better). 

The most special part of the tour was going into the Red Room (where those with the best seats in the house hang out during intermission) and being greeted with a glass of champagne. Such a fun day! 

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