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About Riga, Latvia: Learning Russian in the Baltic Pearl

Riga, the capital of Latvia, is the largest city in the Baltic republics and is home to one third of the Latvian population. The city lies at the mouth of the Daugava River next to the Gulf of Riga.

A Brief History of Riga

Riga was founded in 1201 as part of the Hanseatic League, a guild confederation that united a series of merchant towns along the North and Baltic Seas. Riga (and later Latvia) came under the rule of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, Sweden and then – after a siege by Tsar Peter the Great – the Russian Empire. At the beginning of the 20th century, Riga was the third largest city in the Russian Empire after St. Petersburg and Moscow.

Latvia became independent in the aftermath of the 1917 October Revolution, only to be recaptured by the German Army in 1941. Three years of Nazi occupation followed until Stalin’s Red Army reappeared in 1944 and turned Latvia into a Soviet Republic, a status it maintained until 1991.

Riga Today: The Ideal Place to Take Russian Courses in Latvia

The country gained independence from the Soviet Union in 1991. However, the high population of ethnic Russians in Riga today means that the majority of the city’s residents are Russian speakers, making it an excellent place to learn Russian language.

Latvia joined the European Union in 2004 and, since then, Riga has become a vibrant business hub. Riga’s historical centre is a UNESCO World Heritage Site with some of the finest Art Nouveau architecture anywhere in Europe. The Vecriga, the medieval heart of the city, is home to the Town
Hall Square and the iconic House of the Blackheads. On the outskirts of the city lies Jurmala, a wonderful beach resort with beautiful parkland – a great place to escape the busy city centre between your Russian courses.

  • 1201
    Year of Foundation
  • 696
    thousand citizens
  • 324
    thousand Russian-natives
  • 304
    square km
  • 85
    sq.km of green space
  • 46

Blog: Discover Riga

See the highlights of Riga while you learn Russian

Top 10 things to do to enjoy Riga

To enjoy Riga, whether you’re studying in Riga at Liden & Denz, or just enjoying a weekend break, there are plenty of things to do...

Latvian food and delicious food

Latvian food is simple, hip, natural, but in a way heavy. It reflects the country’s agricultural heritage and the peasant lifestyle with people struggling with...

Riga history can be told by its buildings

Riga has an animated history. The Latvian capital had a long time struggling until it finally reached independence. The many influences that shaped the Latvian...

one of the best view in Riga

One of Liden & Denz destinations, Riga may not seem like an obvious choice for learning Russian abroad just by the mere fact that is...

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