Tag Archives: Baltic

Riga, a Baltic Winter

Latvia Riga

After the first visit to Riga I made myself a promise to go back to Riga one day but I didn’t expect it to be quite so soon.  Returning to a place for a second time is something I have vowed not to do if I can possibly avoid it mainly because there are forty-five countries in Europe and I have only so far been to thirty-0ne.  But with cheap flights helping me to shorten the list of places left to visit I decided that it would do no harm to take another look at Latvia.

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Tallinn, Estonia

Tallinn Estonia Christmas Market

This year we have spent a lot of time in Western Europe and especially Spain but in December it is time to go East and visit a Christmas market and despite being disappointed in previous years on visits to Slovenia and Austria, which had been full of cheap trash from the far east, we remembered that the market in Riga in Latvia had been very good so we chose to return this year to the Baltic.

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Jurmala, Latvia

We had a short drive to the beach resort of Jurmala and when we arrived we had another tour reorganisation discussion that convinced me to finally dispose of my useless personal itinerary.  This was really beginning to irritate people so I was pleased when it was all sorted out to everyone’s satisfaction and we were allowed to get off the coach and head for the beach.

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Latvian Ethnic Open Air Museum

The next morning we were delighted to be woken early by shafts of razor sharp sunlight piercing the paper-thin bedroom curtains and blazing radiantly into the room.  I really don’t object to being woken like this.

We had another full day planned but for some the pace was beginning to tell.  Mark had decided in advance to skip the morning session to recover from his late night out and May choose to stay in the city for some solo retail therapy.  This was absence through choice; Nick on the other hand had planned to be there but he had rejected my sensible advice and had given himself a monster hangover and was quite unable to leave his hotel room because of his ferocious headache and constant vomiting.

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Riga, Jurmala by Train

Latvian Train

Not one of the World’s great train journeys.

We have been to Jūrmala both by mini-bus and by taxi before but this time we decided to travel by train.  Thankfully this only involved a journey of about thirty minutes or so because take it from me – this was not the Orient Express and certainly not one of the great railway journeys of the world.

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