Riga was once known as a wild nightlife capital of Europe with cheap beer, plenty of locals and tourists mixing and swathes of bars and clubs that you could enjoy all night long. So what has happened to Riga's bustling nightlife during the pandemic and will Riga ever be the city of the night it once was again? Has the city lost the debauched streets and heavy all-nighters for good or will we be seeing a post pandemic boom time?
Article written by Riga Free Tour
During the Pandemic Riga has changed on so many levels. We have seen restaurants come and go, well established bars, cafes, clubs and venues disappear from the face of the city and a new revival in underground and illegal parties that have gone against the social norms of the pandemic and risked heavy fines and public safety in the name of a party. For many who live here the end of heaving bars in Old town and the chaotic, messy behaviour is not missed! Riga has really become a charming city at night.
These days old Riga has a very different nightlife than the days long gone by. Passing through low lit cobbled streets and walking through the illuminated parks and along the canal that surround the old city is a really magical experience. Especially when the skies are clear during the winter months and we get a layer of snow on the ground.
Riga is a truly romantic city and just a stone's throw from old Riga you will find a beautiful and charming district known as the quiet center. Home to much of Riga's World renowned Art Nouveau architectural masterpieces, this laid back, up market area has a wonderful selling point at night. Because like many of Riga's historical houses you will find a vast amount of these gorgeous Art nouveau facades lit up during the night time.
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Despite us painting a picture of Riga that has no bars, restaurants and cafes or events going on during the night, this is not really the case. As of May 2022 almost all restrictions have been dropped across venues in Latvia but you should always keep an eye on what the local authorities are planning closer to your arrival. Currently there is a big resurgence in events and concerts and it feels like the streets of Riga are coming back to life again.
It is also worth noting that places and venues get full fast. People hungry to get back out and about are seizing the chance! In summer months, outdoor nightlife will be possible with gardens such as the Tallinas quarter and outside venues catering within the open skies. If you seek you shall find!
Whatever you choose to make the most out of Riga's nightlife just remember to keep yourself safe and aware of your surroundings. Numerous Taxi apps are available to add on to you phone and offer relatively affordable rides around Riga. Or hop on a bicycle or a e scooter and take the city on wheels. Riga is huge, look at the map and pick your destination. In the summer Riga and her many lakes are well worth the visit. To cool down or make a day and night out of it and head to the coast to watch the sun set on Latvia. There is plenty to keep yourselves entertained in Riga, have fun!
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