14-DAY SELF-DRIVE TOUR IN LATVIA
Self-drive tour

14-DAY SELF-DRIVE TOUR IN LATVIA

  • Latvia
  • All year round
  • 14 days / 13 nights

Program

DAY 1: ARRIVAL IN RIGA

Arrival in Riga. Optional private transfer from the airport to the hotel. Check in to the hotel.

Overnight: Riga

DAY 2: DISCOVER RIGA

Founded in 1201 by German bishop Albert, Riga is the largest of the three Baltic capitals. Riga is famous for its sophisticated Art Nouveau architecture about 40% of the city center consists of Art Nouveau buildings, more than in any other city in the world. Walk around the city center and explore the most famous Art Nouveau buildings on Alberta Street and Elizabetes Street, as well as visit the Riga Art Nouveau Center. This lovely museum creates an atmosphere of the era and educates about Art Nouveau. Later, discover the jewels of the lovely Old Town: House of the Blackheads, City Hall Square, Riga Cathedral, St. Pether’s Church, Riga Castle, the oldest dwellings in the city Three Brothers, and others. Let your intuition guide you through the cobblestone streets of Riga Old Town.

When you feel hungry, dive into the rich and colorful aisles of the Riga Central Market, one of the largest covered markets in Europe. Riga Central Market was opened in 1930, and it consists of five former Zeppelin airship hangars. Riga Central Market is a perfect place for tasting local products, such as smoked meat and fish, pickled vegetables, rye bread, Latvian craft beer, various dairy products, and seasonal treats.

Overnight: Riga

DAY 3: RIGA – SIGULDA

This day brings you to the Gauja National Park, the largest and oldest national park in Latvia. Sigulda is one of the most popular places in the Gauja National Park where you can enjoy truly scenic views of the Gauja River valley and countless hiking trails that go up and down along the river. In order to see the most beautiful landscapes of Sigulda, make sure to visit Emperor’s View and Paradise Hill, or enjoy a fun ride in the cable car that brings you across the river valley. We suggest choosing one of the hiking trails or even combining several of them and going for a day hike, so you can experience the best of what the Gauja National Park offers.

If you are interested in medieval architecture and history, pay a visit to Sigulda Medieval Castle or Turaida Museum Reserve. If you prefer 19th and 20th-century history, national romanticism interiors, and art exhibitions, leave some time for exploring Sigulda New Castle. Don’t forget to climb the tower as it offers a magnificent view of the Gauja River valley and both of the other castles.

Overnight: Sigulda

DAY 4: SIGULDA – LIGATNE – CESIS

Keep exploring the Gauja National Park by driving to the nearby historical paper mill village Ligatne which still allows to experience the 19th century vibe. Once, Ligatne paper mill produced such high-quality paper that it was used for the most important documents of the Russian Empire. Today, Ligatne is a peaceful and calm village, perfect for nature and history lovers. Walk around the historical village, explore its sandstone caves, used as cellars for storing different food products, or stop by the local winery to buy some fruit wine. If you are looking for a wild hiking adventure, follow the Ligatne River until it flows into the Gauja River.

Later drive to Cesis, a medieval gemstone of Latvia. Go for a romantic walk around its charming Old Town and visit Cesis Medieval Castle, the best preserved medieval castle in Latvia that invites you to explore medieval history walking around the castle ruins in candlelight. If you feel like diving even deeper into the history, visit Cesis New Castle too. If not for the history, then at least for the wonderful panorama from its tower. If you still feel full of energy, go and visit the natural wonders of Cesis Cirulisi Nature Trails, Red Cliffs, or Eagle Cliffs.

Overnight: Cesis

DAY 5: CESIS – LUDZA – LUZNAVA – DAUGAVPILS

On this day, head southeast to Latgale, a very diverse and culturally rich region of Latvia. Latgale is known as the Land of Blue Lakes, offering more than 1,200 lakes for its visitors. First drive to Ludza, an old Latgalian town located in a scenic place between several lakes. Ludza is known for its 19th-century architecture with narrow streets and one or two-story buildings with unique closed yards. Go for a walk and explore the distinctive city planning. From a distance, you will spot Ludza Catholic Church and its two white towers standing right on the top of the hill. Not far from the church, you will find Ludza Medieval Castle Ruins standing on another hill overlooking lakes and offering a wonderful panorama.

Later drive to Luznava Manor, a real gem of Art Nouveau. The beautiful manor was built at the beginning of the 20th century, and it soon became very popular among painters, writers, and other artists. Nowadays, the manor has gained back its creative spirit it hosts an annual summer plein-air and serves as an art exhibition hall, but it also offers permanent expositions dedicated to Stanislav Kerbedz, the first owner of the manor and a very famous railway engineer.

In the evening, drive to Daugavpils, the second largest city in Latvia. Stroll along Riga Street, a lively pedestrian street that offers several cafes and restaurants where you can enjoy your evening.

Overnight: Daugavpils

DAY 6: DAUGAVPILS – AGLONA – KRASLAVA – DAUGAVPILS

Dedicate your morning to exploring Daugavpils Fortress. It is a unique historical monument that tells a story of 19th-century military history. Inside the fortress, visit the Mark Rothko Art Centre, the only place in the eastern part of Europe where you can see the original works of Mark Rothko. The painter, born in Daugavpils, later became world-famous as the founder of abstract expressionism. If you feel like exploring another museum, consider visiting the Shmakovka Museum which explains the process of making shmakovka, a local version of moonshine.

Later drive to Aglona to see the top tourist object in Latgale Basilica of Aglona, a richly decorated and very impressive baroque-style sacral complex that serves as the most important Catholic holy site and pilgrimage destination in Latvia.

In the afternoon drive back to Daugavpils via Kraslava. Stop for a while in this little town and go for a walk to discover colorful wooden buildings typical of Kraslava. Green, blue, yellow, red all the colors blend together, creating a Slavic mood. If you are interested in exploring even more of Slavic culture, drive to Slutiski Old-Believers’ village. They are proud of their very distinctive way of building and arranging their households, and you can still see it today, especially, if you go to the Old-Believers’ Household Museum.

On your way back to Daugavpils, stop by Vasargeliski sightseeing tower which offers one of the most beautiful landscapes of the Daugava River and its famous curves.

Overnight: Daugavpils

DAY 7: DAUGAVPILS – RUNDALE – BAUSKA

Say goodbye to Latgale and drive to the magnificent Rundale Palace, the former summer residence of the Duke of Courland. The palace surprises its visitors with impressive baroque architecture, wonderful interiors, and breathtaking paintings on the ceilings. After visiting the palace, don’t forget to enjoy its wonderful gardens. The splendor of Rundale offers to experience the vibe of Versailles in the Baltics.

Later drive to Bauska, a lovely town with a typical medieval structure two main streets going parallel to the river with a town hall and market square in the middle. Walk around the Old Town and enjoy its charming architecture. Visit the former Town Hall where you can get weighed and measured in the historical units of measurement. Later follow the Bauska Nature Trail that brings you along the picturesque Memele River towards Bauska Castle Museum. Bauska Castle Museum consists of two parts Livonian Order Castle ruins and the 16th-century residence of the Duke of Courland. The museum offers various expositions dedicated to the history of Bauska, 16th and 17th-century costumes, and military fortification. Later, walk around the Bauska Hillfort and go to Kirbaksala where the Musa River and the Memele River flow together and create the Lielupe River.

Overnight: Mazmezotne or Bauska

DAY 8: BAUSKA – LIEPAJA

This day brings you to the western coast of Latvia, where the seaside city Liepaja awaits you. It is a vibrant port city with its own character. As most Latvian rock musicians come from Liepaja, the city is known among the locals as the Capital of Rock Music. Discover Liepaja at your own pace enjoy the Art Nouveau buildings in the city center, try to find as many street art pieces as you can, explore the most hidden alternative bars with great live music, or stroll along the Promenade. If you are interested in military heritage, head towards Karosta, a former closed military territory. Visit Karosta Military Prison, parts of the former Liepaja fortress that are scattered along the seaside, and other historical sights. In the evening, go for a romantic sunset walk on the longest breakwater in Latvija – Liepaja Northern Breakwater that stretches into the sea for 1,8 km. The breakwater was built in the 19th century as a part of the military fortress, but today it is popular among local fishermen, as well as couples meeting up for a romantic picnic. If you feel like relaxing enjoy the day at the beach.

Overnight: Liepaja

DAY 9: LIEPAJA – PAVILOSTA – JURKALNE – KULDIGA

Keep driving along the Baltic Sea. The western coastline offers beautiful and picturesque views, as well as wild beaches untouched by civilization. First, drive to Pavilosta, a lovely port town with an artistic and bohemian vibe, especially, in summer, when many bars and cafes open their doors, but surfers and vacationers arrive from all over Latvia. Go for a walk on both breakwaters, enjoy a great panorama from the former Soviet border guard observation tower, spend some time at the beach, and simply enjoy your time in one of the cafes.

Later make a stop at Jurkalne, a small village that is known for the Jurkalne Seashore Bluff and one of the few Catholic churches in the Courland region. Peek inside the church, because something unexpected awaits you therea model of a ship hanging from the ceiling. Jurkalne is also a perfect place for enjoying a calm and peaceful time at a wild beach go for a leisurely walk along the seaside, and listen to the waves and seagulls.

In the afternoon, drive to Kuldiga, one of the most romantic and charming towns in Latvia which is often compared to Venice. Kuldiga is a very popular weekend getaway destination thanks to its lovely blend of cobblestone streets, historical 16th to 18th-century architecture, small canal meandering through the town, and the widest waterfall in Europe Ventas Rumba. Discover Kuldiga at a slow pace wander around the Old Town, enjoy some good food and drinks, and look inside art galleries, designer stores, and museums.

Overnight: Kuldiga

DAY 10: KULDIGA – SABILE – KANDAVA – VENTSPILS

Start your day by driving to Sabile, a small town located in the beautiful valley of the Abava River. Sabile is known as the wine town, so it is not a surprise that the symbol of this town is exactly Sabile Wine Hill. This vineyard is even included in the Guinness Book of World Records as the northernmost open-air vineyard. Visit this special vineyard, explore Latvian varieties of grapes, and enjoy a great view of the Abava River valley. Go for a walk around the narrow streets of the town and pay a visit to the former Sabile Synagogue which is transformed into an art exhibition hall.

Later go to the nearby Pedvale Art Park, a must-visit place in the region. It is an open-air art park created by Latvian sculptor Ojars Feldbergs. The concept of Pedvale Art Park is to blend together natural landscape, artistic expression, and cultural heritage. Modern stone sculptures and other artworks open up a world full of imagination where everything is possible. Enjoy the art park at a slow pace, observe the interaction between art and nature, and appreciate the peacefulness and beauty of the landscape.

Continue by driving to another little, but charming town – Kandava. It is proud to have the oldest stone bridge in Latvia, as well as a very cozy and hilly Old Town. Enjoy a slow walk around Kandava and take some nice photos of the winding cobblestone streets, cute houses, and panoramic views!

In the evening, arrive in Ventspils.

Overnight: Ventspils

DAY 11: VENTSPILS

Dedicate this day to exploring Ventspils, a colorful and lively port city. Ventspils offers a wide range of exciting activities for everyone. One of the most scenic views can be found on the Ostas Street Promenade that stretches along the Venta River big and small ships waiting for their next trip, old warehouses, an impressive collection of buoys that always surprise with their huge size, and some of the cow sculptures, an iconic symbol of Ventspils. If you are interested in history, go to Livonian Order Castle, the oldest medieval fortress in Latvia. In order to explore the traditional lifestyle in the region, visit the Seaside Open-Air Museum. In the evening, go for a peaceful walk on the Southern Breakwater or enjoy a sunset from the beach.

Overnight: Ventspils

DAY 12: VENTSPILS – KOLKA – KEMERI – JURMALA

Continue driving along the Baltic Sea. On your way, discover the Slitere National Park and stop by tiny Liv fishermen villages such as Mazirbe, Kosrags, and Kolka. Walk around the villages and explore the fishermen’s lifestyle, try out some smoked fish or local dishes. When you reach Kolka, go for a short walk to visit Cape Kolka, a windy place on the beach where the water of the Gulf of Riga meets the waves of the open Baltic Sea. Next, continue driving along the coast and stop by such fishermen’s villages as Roja, Kaltene, and Mersrags, offering some open-air art, stony beaches, and a lovely lighthouse.

In the afternoon arrive in the Kemeri National Park. Make a short stop at Kemeri village, a former sulfur water and mud resort. Explore the center of the village: Kemeri water tower, sulfur water spring Kirzacina, Love Island, and Kemeri Hotel. Later head to the Great Kemeri Bog Boardwalk, a must-visit sight in the Kemeri National Park. The bog is a magical place with an inexplicable beauty at any time of the year. Follow the boardwalk and enjoy the mesmerizing beauty of the bog vast landscapes, tiny pine trees, mysterious mist, dark lakes, and the dizzying smell of marsh Labrador tea.

Finish your day in Jurmala.

Overnight: Jurmala

DAY 13: JURMALA

Spend the whole day in Jurmala, a popular seaside resort that is famous for its wonderful wooden architecture from the 20th century and fancy lifestyle. Go for a long walk along the beach or follow one of many architectural routes. When you start to feel hungry, go to Joma Street, a very lively pedestrian street full of restaurants, bars, and cafes. In order to discover the development of Jurmala as a seaside resort and learn about bathing traditions throughout history, visit the Jurmala City Museum. Art lovers are warmly welcomed at Art Station Dubulti, the only contemporary art exhibition space in Europe that is located in a functioning railway station. Aspazija’s House offers time traveling to the 1930s and peeking inside the life of one of the most influential female figures in the history of Latvia poetess Aspazija. Enjoy Jurmala and your final full day in Latvia!

In the evening return back to Riga.

DAY 14: DEPARTURE FROM RIGA

Departure day. Check out from the hotel. Optional private transfer from the hotel to the airport.

Highlights

  • Art Nouveau architecture in Riga
  • Gauja National Park – the largest and oldest national park in Latvia
  • Latgale – the Land of Blue Lakes
  • Mark Rothko Art Center in Daugavpils
  • Basilica of Aglona – the most important pilgrimage site in Latvia
  • Rundale Palace and its garden complex
  • Liepaja the Capital of Rock Music
  • 16th to 18th-century architecture in Kuldiga
  • Ventas Rumba – the widest waterfall in Europe
  • Pedvale Art Park
  • Cape Kolka – a place where two seas meet
  • The Great Kemeri Bog
  • 20th-century wooden architecture in Jurmala
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Price

The price for two people in a double room:

  • 3-star hotels: 1150.00 EUR per person
  • 4-star hotels: 1350.00 EUR per person

Single supplement: 510.00 EUR

Included
  • Rental car Toyota Auris or similar per program for 12 days
  • Rental car delivery on Day 3 and drop off on Day 13 at the hotel
  • Accommodation per program
  • Well planned itinerary
  • Support during the trip
  • Roadbook (sightseeing objects, hiking routes, and other recommendations)
Optional
  • 3h walking tour in Riga, Cesis, Kuldiga, or Ventspils: price for each tour is 120.00 EUR
  • 5h hiking tour in Sigulda or Cesis: price for each tour is 250.00 EUR (1-2 persons)
  • 2 h ceramic workshop in Latgale: price per person is 50.00 EUR
  • 4 h Bog Shoeing tour in Kemeri National Park per person is 90.00 EUR
  • 5h Kayaking on Gauja River per person is 90.00 EUR
  • 3 h Bicycle tour in Jurmala per person is 70.00 EUR
  • Ride with a summer bob in Sigulda per person is 40.00 EUR
  • 3h Sklandrausi traditional cooking class: price per person is 70.00 EUR
  • Private transfer from/to the airport: 55 EUR for private car (1 – 3 persons)
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Baltic nature travel
5.0
Based on 14 reviews
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Dona Zavislan
Dona Zavislan
2023-09-25T14:40:43+0000
I loved this tour and it was a highlight of my five days in Latvia. After spending a few days in Riga, I wanted to... explore more of the country and do some hiking. I considered renting a car for the day, but this tour provided just what I was looking for and so much more without the expense and hassle of a car rental and figuring out where to go. I was picked up and dropped off at my hotel and was able to enjoy the drive and an opportunity to see area surrounding Riga. Guide Valdis is a native Latvian and has a lot of experience hiking and much knowledge about the area and Latvia. The 15 K hike was rigorous, but doable. I found the park gorgeous and peaceful. We hiked through a forest, along the river, crossed bridges, explored caves and sandstone carvings and passed other notable places. Valdis made the hike very interesting with stories and he pointed out other activities available in this beautiful park and surrounding area. We stopped midday for a lovely picnic. Valdis also gave me information about other places to consider exploring in Latvia. A perfect day and I highly recommend this tour.read more
Tom Moore
Tom Moore
2022-11-19T14:17:21+0000
Had a fantastic hike with Valdis today. He's really friendly and knowledgeable. I highly recommend him.
Zijian Hua
Zijian Hua
2022-10-16T08:47:16+0000
Valdis is an experienced guide, a local from Riga. He has a wealth of knowledge and is always able to tell you... interesting history along the way. The route plan of the hiking is also reasonable. In autumn, the fallen leaves near Sigulda are also very beautiful. If you are planning to do an outdoor hike in Latvia too, then don't hesitate to join a walking group organized by Valdis.🇱🇻read more
Sheila Dunk
Sheila Dunk
2022-06-04T01:33:30+0000
Absolutely brilliant day out with Valdis, we didn’t stop talking from the moment he picked me up. He was knowledgeable... about the area, answered all my questions about Latvia and was just delightful to be with.The area of the hike was stunning, we got some good spots for views and pictures, the weather was beautiful and I couldn’t have asked for a better way to spend the day. The hike isn’t difficult, plenty of ups and downs and with a decent level of fitness anyone can do this hike.read more
Betti Sewell
Betti Sewell
2020-11-28T17:19:37+0000
The hike was beautiful and Valdis was relaxed, helpful and informative. Highly recommended.
Chris Palin
Chris Palin
2020-11-15T07:39:38+0000
Had a great experience with Valdis. The hike was really interesting with lots of points of interest including an... abandoned bob sleigh track. A great guide, fantastic day out.10 out of 10 I would definitely recommend to anybodyread more
Elisa Bozzotto
Elisa Bozzotto
2020-10-31T21:30:28+0000
I love the atmosphere in the group and the offered trails. They show a part of the countryside that is still not yet... well know but definitely worth seeing. With woods that look like the one from a fairy story book and really good company it's definitely a suggested tou experience for the lovers of outdoors activities..The guide is super available and offer explanations and curiosity. Particularly useful is the description of how to reach the starting point with public transport (even with the specific schedule time). So I definitely recommend it 😉read more
Lina Kulikauskaite
Lina Kulikauskaite
2020-10-31T18:04:12+0000
Nicely chosen trail 🍂🌲very friendly and supportive guide. Had a lot of fun! Looking forward for next trip 👣📸
Kristīna Kļimoviča
Kristīna Kļimoviča
2020-10-05T05:49:53+0000
I am very grateful to Valdis for leading our hike through the Gauja National Park near Sigulda. It was the perfect... combination of the city sightseeing and enjoying nature. Valdis made stops at the most remarkable objects both in the city and in nature and told the most important things, which were neither too much nor too little. He really took good care of the group. Thank you for this day! Highly recommended!read more
Victor Papin
Victor Papin
2020-10-04T15:43:17+0000
Great welcoming & service, great hike.
Oskars Ikstens
Oskars Ikstens
2018-04-27T12:18:35+0000
Zane Kurševa
Zane Kurševa
2018-04-22T14:12:43+0000
Armīns Maslovskis
Armīns Maslovskis
2018-04-22T13:39:50+0000
Liene Lote Čemme
Liene Lote Čemme
2018-03-01T14:27:46+0000
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What travelers say about us

EXCELLENT
36 reviews on
Carmen Daams
Carmen Daams
2023-09-22
I took the Kuldiga trip with Valdis. The experience was amazing. The entire day was great. He is a great guide, and knows a lot of interesting information. He would definitely make your whole experience even better. Kuldiga is such a captivating city, very unique with a very special style and soul. If you are visiting Latvia, don't hesitate to take this trip, it is a "must".
Stanley Wallerstein
Stanley Wallerstein
2023-08-29
Great Tour and great guide. Baltic Nature Travel is excellent.
Maria M Andrade
Maria M Andrade
2023-08-28
Valdis organized an absolutely wonderful 10 day trip to Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania trip for my sister, a friend, and myself. He arranged all details including our private chofer and tour guide up the last detail. He went far and beyond when he knew I had an accident in Estonia. We met him Latvia and he make us feel welcome. He recommended the most amazing restaurants for us and he took care of my doctor needs where he was the interpreter. In every country we had the best guys one can possibly ask for. All hotels were walking distance from city centre. Thank you Valdis we will always remembered this trip!!!!
Sarah Daniels
Sarah Daniels
2023-08-21
Thank you, Valdis, for helping my family have a wonderful two week trip to the Baltics! Your advice and recommendations were very helpful, and our tour guides in 4 different cities were each outstanding! I highly recommend a vacation in the beautiful and fascinating Baltics, and I highly recommend using Valdis to help you plan it.
Rita Derencius
Rita Derencius
2023-08-09
Tours and tour guides, Tomas and Mindaugas, exceeded my expectations. We were able to curate our tour of Lithuania. The guides were extremely knowledgeable and adapted the tour based on our input. Valdis was responsive and easy to work with. Extremely happy we chose to have private tour guides. Best trip ever!
Deniz Demirors
Deniz Demirors
2023-08-08
Valdis did amazing job to organize us a 15 day, 14 night self drive adventure trip to Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania. Thanks to his valuable advise before and immaculate documentation with names of the locations, guides etc we had a magical experience. We hiked, biked, walked, beached and off course drive all over in all 3 beautiful countries. We felt very safe. Everyone we met were very friendly. The car was delivered to our first hotel in Tallinn and picked up from last hotel in Vilnius. They were professional and kind people. We encountered few minor issues but Valdis resolved very promptly so our program was not impacted. We met him in Riga as he was our guide. Thanks to Valdis & his team of guides we had an unforgettable time and experience. Valdis is very gently, kind, hears his clients wishes and makes adjustments in his existing programs. Job well done Valdis. Thank you very much.
Catherine Herway
Catherine Herway
2023-06-24
These are the only places on earth where eastern and western architecture can now meet in harmony. The architecture tells a social history translated into excellent English on this tour! The hotels were clean, comfortable, and safe. The food was outstanding as well, I only wish I had more time!
Artur Iwański
Artur Iwański
2023-05-03
A very good and interesting guide. Customized trips - which is very useful. If you want to get to know Latvia (which is worth it!) there is no one better. Highly recommended.
Giovanni Paolo Palamara
Giovanni Paolo Palamara
2023-01-07
Very interesting trip. Definitely worth it!

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Baltic Nature Travel
Baltic Nature Travel