Valdis Zatlers (born March 22, 1955) is the 7th and current president of Latvia. He won the Latvian presidential election of May 31, 2007. He became President of Latvia on 8 July 2007.
The capital of Latvija - Riga
Riga, the capital of Latvia , was officially founded in 1201. Riga is divided into six administrative districts: Centra, Kurzeme, Ziemeļu, Latgale, Vidzeme and Zemgale districts
Riga is located along the Baltic Sea at the southern coast of the Gulf of Riga, on the Rigava coastal plain. The historical core of Riga is situated on the right bank of the Daugava River, about 10 kilometers from where the Daugava flows into the Gulf of Riga. The natural terrain of this area is a flat and sandy plain, about 1 to 10 meters above the sea level
The regular building of the turn of the 19th and 20th centuries is characteristic for the planning of the historic centre, oriented towards the direction of main streets in the Old City, which emerged approximately in the 14th century. Dismantling of outdated defense systems (ramparts, dams, constructions) in 1857 – 1863 was an important impetus for the development of the city construction. As a result, the picturesque Boulevard Circle was designed and in the turn of the 19th and 20th centuries, with the rapid development of high-rise dwelling construction, unique Art Nouveau examples were created. In some districts of Riga, for various reasons, complex wooden constructions of that time have still been preserved, and that is an amazing phenomenon in the 21st century. In 1997 the historic center of Riga due to this valued architecture was inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List.
Photogallery of Riga
The cities of Latvia
In my country is 77 cities
The districts of Latvia
Latvia is divided into 26 districts and 7 cities-singular, indicated with asteriks:
There are about 3000 lakes in Latvia. Most of them are rather small. Approximately 40 % are located in Eastern part of Latvia. The deepest lake is Dridzis (65,1 m), the Largest - Lubans (80,7 m), while Ezezers is rich in islands (33 islands) and is situated in Latgale. There is also Usma lake in Kurzeme with the oldest nature reserve on the island - Moricsala (founded in 1912).
The rivers of Latvia
Daugava is the largest river of Latvia. It starts in Russia, in Valdajs elevation, not far from Volga source - one of the largest rivers in Europe. The word “Daugava” in the language of ancient Balts means “rich in rivers”. Daugava is 1005 km long (352 km in Latvia). The ancient part of Daugava is between Kraslava and Daugavpils, where Daugava flows in ten large arches, making beautiful scenery.. In Riga, at the bridges, Daugava is 700 m wide, however, as it approaches the sea, its width is 1.5.km and depth - 8-9 meters. The river Gauja starts in the territory of Latvia, in Vidzeme elevation. Its total length is 452 km (it is the longest river in Latvia). The most beautiful scenery from Valmiera to Murjani (ancient vale of Gauja) is in the territory of Gauja National Park. On the banks of the river Gauja, the Devon sandstone rocks can be observed (Sietiniezis, Red Cliffs, Eagles’ Cliffs). Gauja’s eddies are dangerous, because the river changes its base. Sigulda is an outstanding tourism city and lies on the banks of Gauja (there is also the world famous bob-sleight route in Sigulda). Earlier it was a tributary of Daugava, but since 1755, has been flowing into Riga Sea Gulf.
Castles and palaces of Latvia
First castles on present Latvia territory
were wooden structures built by Baltic tribes in the 1st century BC.
The German Crusaders ’ military invasion
had brought along methods of masonry building in the 13th century.
Manors in Livonia I
developed as feudal demesne form starting from the early 13th century.
Manors in Livonia II
By the time land division became more split in smaller estates and the new manor complexes developed in result.
Starting from the 2nd half of the 18th century
started building of manor-houses what by their size can be called palaces – these richly decorated multi-storey
masonry residences of landlords
. Manor-houses and palaces built in Historicism , Art Nouveau and Neo-Classicism styles
in period 1st half of the 19th century – beginning of the 20th century have important place in culture ambience genesis
At the beginning of the 20th century
most of land in Latvia still was owned by about 1000 families (for example in Vidzeme region 162 families 77 % of all
At the time of agrarian reform in 1920
it were counted 1479 manors, 294 semi-manors and 171 vicarages in Latvia.
Advantageous geographic location
makes Latvian castles, manors and palaces easy reachable for any tourist