Running in Riga is a very special experience. As I already mentioned in my first review, running in most Eastern European cities is quite challenging. Rarely any of the cities has real running paths or routes that are amazing for running. However, I enjoyed discovering the old town of Riga as well as running along the Daugava, the biggest river in the city.
After my first running experience in Riga started somewhere in a residential area, my second one began right in the center of the city.
With Royal Square Hotel being located right in the historic core, I literally fell into paved roads and enjoyed beautiful views of the historic buildings that make the old town of Riga that special.
However, not everything was perfect on this Monday morning. Even though the weather was quite admirable, my GPS didn’t really like to work. Instead, I had to run without GPS for the first three kilometers. And then suddenly … it began to work!
Riga’s old town is kind of lovely with several small streets and a lot of cobblestones.
Something else amazing are the different shaped and colored houses that you can find in the old town.
However, it’s also quite strange to stumble upon T.G.I Fridays in the center of the old town in a historic building.
Eastern Europe is very special indeed! With this strange finding in mind, I decided to explore Bastejkalns (which is translated as Bastion Mountain) once again.
I already did so in my first running guide where I also explained the different sights around. Due to that, I’ll leave you with some beautiful pictures of this sunny morning instead. Enjoy!
Running at the Bastion Mountain and the parks around is quite amazing, but as I also wanted to experience something new, I decided to leave the parks after crossing a nice little Asian pavilion.
Just steps further, I suddenly realized that rails are crossing the park. What was even weirder: As the rails were a little elevated, there were steps for pedestrians to cross it. Something unique about Eastern Europe in general and Riga in particular is the shortness of warning signs.
Such a relaxed life! Talking or relaxation, after reaching the Daugava, it was quite a struggle due to a private area next to the river. I loved the views of “modern Riga” on the other side of the river and the great path along the Daugava.
Something special about Riga and running in the city is the sudden change of modernity and history.
While running along the Daugava and watching impressive buildings like the National Library or the new financial district of the city feels like the 21st century, crossing the street to get into old town suddenly makes you go back in time.
Looking at statues marking the times of occupation, admiring the lovely town hall and having a glance at other beautiful historic buildings like the dome is utterly amazing in contrast to modern buildings like the Occupation Museum or enjoying the modern art at one of several squares in Riga.
The city is absolutely special in this regard!
Instead of instantly getting back to the hotel, I decided to run through the (at the morning very empty) old town.
I really enjoyed the small little cobblestone alleys with the dozens of restaurants and bars. Additionally, art and statues are to be found at uncountable places. Running in the old town of Riga is always perfect to find something new and amazing.
However, it may only be that enjoyable when running in the early morning. Me, personally, I’d definitely run in the city center again. While the parks and running along the river was quite nice too, I utterly enjoyed the many surprises that awaited me while jogging through the cobblestoned streets of Riga!