Sigulda – A great day trip from Riga, Latvia

Sigulda New Castle, Latvia

While I was in Riga I was told that I had to visit Gauja National Park and to go to the town Sigulda.  It takes about 1 hour 15 mins on the bus from Riga and costs 2.50 Euro each way.

When I arrived I went into the tourist information office located next to the train station and got a map of the area and found out the main points of interests to see.

My first stop was to the Sigulda Castle Complex.  Walking in I saw Sigulda New Castle which was built in 1878 in a neo gothic style, it now houses the Sigulda City Council.  The grounds and the castle are just stunning and are a must see.

Sigulda New Castle, Latvia Sigulda New Castle, Latvia

I walked around the back of the house and got my first view of Sigulda Castle, it was built in 1207 as a fortress and was later rebuilt as a convent.  You can climb the north tower and main gate tower and walk along part of the walls.  The castle also has a stage set up in the grounds and during summer concerts are held there.  It costs 2 Euro to enter the castle but it’s well worth it for the views from there are amazing.

Sigulda Medieval Castle Latvia

Sigulda Castle Latvia Sigulda Castle Latvia Sigulda Castle Latvia Sigulda Castle Latvia Sigulda Castle Latvia Sigulda Castle Latvia Sigulda Castle Latvia Sigulda Castle Latvia

After exploring the castle and seeing the views of Turaida Medieval Castle and Krimulda Manor I walked back through town and past Sigulda Evangelic Lutheran Church.

Sigulda Evangelic Lutheran Church Latvia Sigulda Evangelic Lutheran Church Latvia

To get across the valley to Turaida Medieval Castle, you can either get a bus from the bus station, walk along the road for 5km or get the cablecar across the valley.  It costs 7 euro one way or 12 Euro return but the views down the valley are amazing.

Guaja National Park Latvia

I opted for the cable car so I could see the views of the valleys and from the other side it’s a 4km hike to Turaida Castle.  Just turn right from the cable car and either the top path or bottom path will eventually lead to the same place, the path is very up and down, lots of stairs but worth doing.  They are in process of putting sign posts up, which unfortunately wasn’t finished when I was doing the hike meaning it was easy to get lost in places.

Firstly you walk past Krimulda Medieval Castle which is in ruins, this is if you take the top path.  It was built in 1255 and after burning down in 1601 was never rebuilt.

Krimulda Medieval Castle Latvia

Then Gutman’s cave, this is after going down all the steps to the bottom of the valley.  It is the biggest cave in the baltic region and the oldest tourist attraction in Latvia.  It has ancient inscriptions written on the walls.

Gutman's Cave Sigulda Latvia Gutman's Cave Sigulda Latvia

From here it was back into the woods, up lots of stairs, down lots of stairs, get lost and then finally arriving at Turaida Castle.   Admission is 5 euros.  The massive red brick tower you can see for miles, you can climb to see the amazing views looking down towards the Guaja river. The complex is a museum telling you the history of the area and is the most visited museum in Latvia.  It was originally built in 1214 and restored in the 1970’s.

Turaida Castle Sigulda Latvia Turaida Castle Sigulda Latvia Turaida Castle Sigulda Latvia Turaida Castle Sigulda Latvia Turaida Castle Sigulda Latvia

This area is stunning and you could walk around the 42 hectares of grounds for hours, there are miles of paths and a sculpture park too.  The native people referred to this area as the Garden of God.

The wooden church of Turaida is one of the oldest in Latvia built in 1750 and has largely remained unchanged, this is on the estate and is a beautiful setting for the wedding I saw.

Turaida Church Sigulda Latvia

You can also see the old houses and gardens, it’s certainly a beautiful area.  There is also a little cafe serving tea and cakes and I can imagine on a warm summer’s day it’s even more beautiful.

Turaida Museum Reserve Sigulda LatviaTuraida Museum Reserve Sigulda LatviaTuraida Museum Reserve Sigulda Latvia

After my visit I then got the bus back to Sigulda bus station where I caught the bus back to Riga.  It’s a beautiful day trip, certainly worth doing if you are in the area but you do need a full day to see everything.  It would be quicker if you had a car but it’s very easy to do without.

Did you enjoy this post, then please pin it.

Sigulda - A great day trip from Riga

Find out about Why I started travelling here, Miami Beach here, Key West here, Everglades here, Bolton Abbey here, Naples here, Koh Tao here, Yangon – Myanmar here, Ischica – Italy here, Koyasan – Japan here, Machu Picchu – Peru here, Memphis here, Faro – The Algarve here, Fiji – South Sea Island here, Egypt – My trip in a hot air balloon here, Doutbful Sound – NZ here,  Death Road – Bolivia here, Iguazu Falls – Argentina here, Northern Lights – here, Hobbiton NZ – here, The Lost City Hike Colombia – here, Choquequirao Trek here,San Blas Islands, Panama here, Vilnius Lithuania – here, Trakai – Lithuania here & Riga – Latvia here

Subscribe now to read my next blog          

Subscribe to Blog via Email

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Share This:

20 thoughts on “Sigulda – A great day trip from Riga, Latvia

  1. Wow, Sigulda looks amazing! I should have gone there while I was in Latvia…I only went to Riga. I love castles like these. And the nature looks lovely..I love exploring caves!

  2. I have always wanted to go to Latvia and this blog has made me want to go even more! Riga looks so green and natural with some gorgeous architecture!
    Great post!

  3. I have never been to this part of world. I love the castle, the building and the countryside as well. Looks like a lovely day trip to try out. I definitely will when I get a chance.

  4. I can’t believe how cheap the bus ticket was (and generally how cheap everything there was). I don’t think I’ve ever seen a structure built in 1207 before – how cool. I would’ve loved to visit the castle. Definitely putting Sigulda on my list for next time I’m in that area!

    • The cave was out of the woods, right at the bottom near the road!!! Hopefully once they put the signs on the new signposts it will make it easier for people!! Lovely walk though.

  5. Sounds like a perfect little place for a day trip from Riga. We didn’t have a lot of time when we visited Riga earlier in the year so probably wouldn’t have had the time to visit this place. Definitely one for next time though!

  6. This sounds like a great day trip option! I think riding the cable car, or exploring the Krimulda Medieval Castle would be my favorite activity. Are there any places to eat here that you would recommend?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *