They have a cow coin. How cool is that!
05.07.2009 - 07.07.2009
Yes, it is true. The two lat coin has a lovely cow stamped on one side. It is really quite nice. I know, I know....you are thinking that I have lost my mind but it really is a nice cow.
Riiga is a great city. It has a mix of old and modern standing side by side. It is not uncommon to see some 18th century building next to a building with an art nouveau facade and just across the street a modern office building.
We stayed in the Old Town Hostel for $18/night/person. The rooms are directly off of this very tight, spiral staircase. We were on the 5th floor in a six room dorm. Very nice and clean but a major haul with a 45 lb backpack.
We took a free tour with an English expat named James. He has been living in Riiga for 5-6 years and started these free city walking tours. He is totally dependent on donations from the group at the end of the tour.
He did a great job of it and showed us parts of Riiga most would not get from a tour company.
Latvia is interesting in that there is this internal conflict regarding the different occupations during its late history by the Russians then the Nazis and once again the Russians. Some Lat's view the Nazis occupation as the lesser of the two evils. However, the Latvian Jews might not agree, if there were any around...... Anyway you slice it, the history is not pretty regarding this period.
I really enjoyed my stay and would reccomend a visit if ever you are so inclined to cruise the Baltic states.