A lot of people will travel to Riga with their kids but Is Riga a family friendly city and can any city really be child friendly? The good news for those who will be visiting Riga is that it is in fact a great city to spend time with your family and your kids.
Article written by Riga Free Tour
Riga has many green open spaces, parks, playgrounds, natural beauty spots and is surrounded by many forests, beaches and natural areas with beautiful views and trails to walk along and explore. When compared to other Capital cities around Europe you will find Riga to have a lot more play areas, kids friendly places to eat and a lot of outdoor things for both children and adults to enjoy.
Within the inner city Riga still boasts a wide range of Green and open spaces, perfect for children and adults alike. We can even include the Old city of Riga into these open spaces, which in the most part is actually very calm and free from flowing traffic. Just take Meza Parks (Forest park) as an example of a cool place for kids in Riga. You can reach there by tram 11 or bicycle path and you will find all kinds of cool play areas, Frisbee golf, a zoo, lake and waterside activities, hiking paths, climbing rope park and much more. It is a great location for a full day out and if you do your research you will find it has plenty to offer.
Of course the ever changing seasonal weather will have a big say in what you can do outdoors but for many inhabitants of the city, it is not the weather that determines your experience outside but the choice of your clothing! We meet too many visitors to Riga who seem to forget that in the winter we can experience minus degrees and blistering snow storms, whereas in the summer Riga can be baking hot and scorching.
Your clothing choices are not down to us but I can say firmly that between November and March you may want to consider looking at the weather ahead of time! Riga can get wet so when travelling with kids its a good idea to think about rain gear.
Riga has many museums and attractions that may be of interest to Children too, such as The Nature museum, Riga Zoo, Riga Puppet theatre, plenty of open air skate parks and playgrounds all over the city, Kino Riga (that hosts kids films), Aqua park located close by in Jurmala, many Cinemas, shopping malls, boat rides along the river, kayaking in the canal, wakeboarding spots, ski slopes and ice skating in winter, VR experiences, laser tag, Go karting, SUP rentals, bike trails and the list goes on. Simply think what your children would like, add the keyword 'Riga' to google and see what we have to offer!
In truth though, it is the outdoors that is so great for kids here, Latvia is one of the greenest countries in the universe. Just a few stops on the train out of Riga and you will find yourself in a forested wonderland, with magical and isolated trails, often explored by few others. I personally recommend the Northern railway line towards Skulte. You can hop off around Vecaki about 20- minutes from Riga and walk through coastal forests, along beaches and get lost in the wilderness.
Why not head out to Sigulda, just one hour on a train and explore the Gauja valley. A little further along that line and you will come to Cesis. The castle here is spectacular and with its gruesome past and well preserved ruins any 8 yr old will love a day out here. The Kemeri nature park is also worth noting, as are the beaches of Jurmala. Camping is another great option. With many free camping spots dotted throughout Latvia as well as private ones you can literally spend your summer in a tent.
Is Riga good for kids? My 8 year old son thinks so! And as we write this article he reminds me and insists for me to tell you that there is also an awesome Comic shop and Computer Games museum to check out in Riga too! We think Riga is a great city for all the family!
Thank you for reading the article. For more travel tips from our local guides around the world check the blog section of our website! Have you read our article about Riga nightlife?