Sunday, May 20, 2012

Day 5: Riga, Latvia - Culture Capitol of Europe... if not the World.

We got to Riga early this morning. We had a little scare at the airport, as one of us briefly lost their passport (but found it in a different pocket). We arrived in Riga during their marathon race and had to walk several blocks to the hotel since the road was closed. We art staying in the Albert Hotel (named after Albert Einstein, who was born here). After dropping off our suitcases and getting a quick lunch or nap, we went on a 3-hour guided walking tour of Riga and the "Old Town" of Riga from the 12th and 13th centuries. If you thought Copenhagen was amazing, seeing Riga might make your heart stop, as the antiquity, preservation, restoration, and modernization of the Old Town and the surrounding area of Riga have been done so well, despite the numerous wars, bombings, and occupations. National/Cultural pride here is so apparent and dedicated, it makes American patriotism look like an obvious "Made-in-China fake" (not that I am speaking poorly of American patriotism).