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“Amazing Castle”

National History Museum of Latvia
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Old Town Walking Tour of Riga
Ranked #87 of 225 things to do in Riga
Attraction details
Wollongong, Australia
Level Contributor
805 reviews
383 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 275 helpful votes
“Amazing Castle”
Reviewed 2 September 2012

This is a castle on the banks of River Daugava in Riga, the capital of Latvia. The castle was founded in 1330. This structure was thoroughly rebuilt between 1497 and 1515. Upon the castle's seizure by the Swedes, they constructed spacious annexes in 1641. Its fortifications are amazing and I was impressed. A must see in Riga.

Visited October 2011
2 Thank Eddie O
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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37 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Russian first
  • Any
English first
Gambrills, MD
Level Contributor
137 reviews
65 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 128 helpful votes
“Interesting out-of-the-way museum”
Reviewed 1 September 2012

This small museum is one flight up from one of the offices of the President of Latvia. There are several guards pacing outside, but you can just open the front door and go up the stairs, walking past the office with the plaque on the door and continuing up the next flight of stairs to the museum. Inside you will find artefacts from the Stone Age through 1941. I thought the ancient currency and folk costumes were interesting. There was also an exhibit on education in Latvia when it was part of the Russian Empire. There was even a sign written in Russian, designed to be worn around a child's neck, reading "Today I spoke in Latvian."

Visited August 2012
Thank emilysmom2003
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Haworth, New Jersey
Level Contributor
137 reviews
87 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 236 helpful votes
“Nice overview of Latvian history”
Reviewed 12 March 2012

Unlike what a previous reviewer said, we found that there was plenty of info in English in the form of printed overviews in each room (included with entrance fee of 2 lat). Some really interesting photos of Latvia at the end of the 1800s, complete with the artifacts that were pictured (e.g. farming implements, clothing). Also interesting to see when Latvia experienced each of the developmental ages (e.g. iron age around the 1000s... so late!). I would say this is worth a look, but do go to the Occupation and Medicine museums first if you must prioritize.

Visited March 2012
1 Thank misswhitneypaige
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Newcastle upon Tyne, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
6 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
“No information in English”
Reviewed 6 March 2012

None of the exhibits were translated into English as they were in other museums (occupation museum for instance) and I bought the English guide book which didn't actually give any info on the exhibits only a general overview on each room which was already on printed sheets in each room. A waste of money and time really. The Latvian museum of history and navigation shows much the same and is in English.

Visited March 2012
1 Thank MK1_GIT
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Washington DC, District of Columbia
Level Contributor
196 reviews
54 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 996 helpful votes
“An interesting, worthwhile, and oft-overlooked museum”
Reviewed 17 July 2008

The entrance to the Riga Castle doesn't look very inviting, but it's definitely worth a visit. Inside is the fascinating National History museum, 15 rooms filled with traditional art, clothing, and furnishings. Some of the explanatory signs are written in both English and Latvian, and there's even a handful of "feel-stations" for visually-impaired guests. I was especially impressed with the rooms of medieval and gothic art, most of which are fascinating Mannerist-style wood carvings (long, curvy bodies and almost cartoonish faces). There are also extensive collections of early Latvian costumes and jewelry, plus examples of early Latvian rooms. When I visited the museum I had the whole place to myself, which made for a very relaxing visit. But I do hope that in the future more people will discover this little Riga gem!

7 Thank Marywhotravels
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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