Although Sigulda is located just an hour drive from Riga by train, Sigulda feels a world away! A charming town surrounded by gorgeous greenery and a surprising amount of adrenaline-pumping adventure activities. You can visit Sigulda at any time of the year. Sigulda must be on “to do list” for nature lovers and adventure seekers!
Sigulda is famous for having not one, not two, but three castles – actually, four if we count the manor house across the river valley in Krimulda, which is used as a rehab centre in nowadays. It is suggestable to start your tour with Siguldas Castle quarter.
Castle of Livonian order in Sigulda or also known as – Sigulda Medieval Castle ruins, are located on the edge of the river Gauja valley. The original castle was built in 1207 as a castellum-type fortress, later rebuilt into a convent-type building.
However, it is possible to climb to the Castle’s southern and northern towers, to enjoy views over the river valley and forests of Gauja National park.
Sigulda Medieval Castle is situated on the edge of the ancient Gauja valleys on a projection formed by three steep slopes. A deep ditch at the south side of the castle was constructed to protect the castle buildings by separating them from the rest of the land.
Annual concerts and festivals are organized on the open-air stage of Sigulda castle-ruins. The most remarkable event is the Sigulda Opera Music Festival.
Near the Castle of the Livonian Order, it is also possible to visit the New Castle, built in the 18th century. The New Castle of Sigulda is an architectural monument of national importance, which after the reconstruction project of architect Alfrēds Birkhāns in 1937, was considered to be the most magnificent writers’ palace in Europe.
The exterior of the New Castle of Sigulda built by the Knyaz Kropotkin family in 1878 has retained its neo-Gothic style, meanwhile, its interior became a pearl of national romanticism in 1937, when it hosted the Latvian Union of Writers and Journalists. During the reconstruction, a unique interior of national romanticism was created in the palace, which survives to this day having been restored between 2017 and 2021.
Nowadays, the castle district buildings host workshops and salons of craftsmen and artists, where new skills can be learned, and souvenirs can be purchased.
The most visited museum of Latvia and castle tower “Bergfrids” where is possibly the best bird’s-eye view in Latvia!
Turaida Museum Reserve is a multi-faced museum with a medieval castle, wooden church, sculpture garden dedicated to Latvian folklore, as well as the estate buildings and the renewed pound cascade all telling about events more than 1 000 years ago. The name “Turaida” is from the ancient Liv language and means “The Garden of God”. Turaida is also well recognized by the romantic legend about Rose of Turaida.
Festivity square was inaugurated in 2007 to celebrate Sigulda’s 800 year anniversary. Nearby is the “edge of the world” and Ferris wheel which offers panoramic views of the river Gauja Valley and Sigulda city.
There are many panoramic places in Sigulda, but everyone’s favorite is definitely Paradise Hill. The breathtaking landscapes that can be seen from the cliff of the river Gauja valley have been painted by such great Latvian artists as Jūlijs Feders, Janis Rozentāls, and Vilhelms Purvītis hence the name – Painters’ hill. Paradise hill or Painters’ hill is an easily reachable place in the town of Sigulda – for visitors who love the beautiful views and nature.
While hiking to the Krimulda Manor or Sigulda city, you have the choice between crossing the river valley on foot or taking a cable car across it. The Sigulda cable car offers a ride over the Gauja valley, enjoying the view of a wonderful landscape over a distance of multiple kilometers. In a height of 43 m above the river the Sigulda cable car connects both sides of the river Gauja in a width of 1020 m and excites with a picturesque view of three medieval castles – Sigulda, Turaida, and Krimulda, the bobsleigh track, and Gauja bridge. The cable car is the first and oldest vehicle of its kind in the Baltic States.
The company operating the cable car also offers lots of adventure and adrenaline sports like zipline and bungee jumping. If you’ve always wanted to go for an unforgettable adventure, this is your chance!
The Bobsleigh and Luge Track Sigulda is one of 18 constructions of this type in the world. In comparison with other tracks, this one is unique, since it is accessible for visitors and tourists for attraction rides. International competitions are held at the track every year. 1420 meters, 16 curves and a 200 m long braking distance – these parameters of Sigulda bobsleigh and luge track can be experienced not only by professional athletes but also by every visitor of Sigulda in winter and summer.
The largest cave (grotto) in the Baltic countries and also the oldest tourist attraction in Latvia. On the walls of the cave, there are inscriptions from the 17th century. The legend of the Rose of Turaida began in this cave – listen it while you visit the cave! Audioguide you will find – here.
We invite you to remember that the caves are located in the Gauja National Park area and ask you to be attentive and respectful of the ancient geological monuments without damaging them or writing on them!