The Stunning National Parks of Latvia

Gauja National Park | © Liga Eglite/Flickr
Gauja National Park | © Liga Eglite/Flickr
From mystical forests to never-ending bogs to breathtaking lakes, Latvia is a wonderful country for people who enjoy spending time out in nature. Even though there are no big mountains or jungles in Latvia, you’ll be amazed at the delicate and untouched national parks, which feel like a fairytale.

Gauja National Park

Gauja National Park, established in 1978, is the biggest national park in Latvia, located in Gauja Valley nest to Valmiera. The biggest attractions in Gauja National Park are ancient sandstone outcrops, huge cliffs, and dark caves. You would definitely need more than a couple of days to visit all these beautiful places. Apart from nature, the visitors can also visit over 500 historic monuments, such as castle ruins, windmills, and churches, which were built centuries ago.

People who enjoy sportier activities can hike one of the many trails, cycle around the forests, take a boat ride on the Gauja River, or even bungee jump from 43 meters above the Gauja River.

Gauja National Park © Liga Eglite/Flickr

Kemeri National Park

Kemeri National Park is the best spot in Latvia for birdwatching, since Lake Kanieris and the Great Kemeri Bog provide perfect conditions for various species of birds. Kemeri National Park is also popular for its biological diversity, and visitors can choose to relax by mineral waters, explore mystic bogs, or treat themselves with therapeutic mud while staying in a beautiful Kemeri Resort, which attracts many people from all over Europe.

Kemeri National Park © GRID Arendal/Flickr

Slītere National Park

In the Northern Kurzeme peninsula, next to the Baltic Sea, you will find the spectacular Slītere National Park, which attracts visitors with its lively fauna and diverse flora, including the Baltic Sea, exuberant forests, magical swamps, and bogs. More active visitors can choose to take one of many different trails, from hiking to the observation tower to roads suited for motorists and boaters’ routes.

Slītere Lighthouse on top of the Blue Hills is a must-visit spot in Slītere National Park. People also love to walk around sandy beaches and big dunes of Slītere National Park. Visitors who want to experience true Latvian culture should visit local fisherman villages and see how Latvians live outside of the big cities.

Slitere National Park © Bargais / Shutterstock

Rāzna National Park

Rāzna National Park was only established in 2007, and it stretches over more than 59,000 ha. The main reason why this park was created was to protect the flora and fauna of Rāzna Lake while still allowing both local and foreign visitors experience the beauty of the Latgale territory. There are a lot of lakes around the national park, so people who enjoy canoeing, swimming, or simply sunbathing on sandy beaches will find Rāzna National Park extremely beautiful. On top of that, people in Latgale region are known to be the friendliest and kindest people, so it is worth to visit closest towns like Rēzekne and Ludza and experience Latvian culture and traditions.

Rāzna National Park © Eriks Z / Shutterstock