Town Hall Square, Riga

Town Hall Square, Riga (must see)

This cobblestone town square marks the center of Old Riga. It's surrounded by beautiful architecture, including the House of the Black Heads and Riga City Hall.

In the center of the Square stands a statue of Roland. He was Charlemagne's nephew and a Frankish military leader. His reputation for stringent but just governance has led to him becoming a symbol of justice in Northern Germany. The statue has stood next to the town's well since 1897.

However, the Square's biggest claim to fame is that it was the site of the first lit and decorated Christmas tree in 1510. There is a plank marking the location, and, of course, a tree is decorated here every year during the holidays.

Bombs leveled Town Hall Square and its surrounding buildings during World War II. Everything you see today was rebuilt in the years following the war. The House of the Black Heads was reopened in 1999, and the Town Hall Building in 2003.

The Square is a great place to begin your explorations of Riga--the narrow cobblestone streets wind through some of the most beautiful architecture you'll find. The scene is especially stunning at night when the buildings are lit for maximum effect.

Want to visit this sight? Check out these Self-Guided Walking Tours in Riga. Alternatively, you can download the mobile app "GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities" from Apple App Store or Google Play Store. The app turns your mobile device to a personal tour guide and it works offline, so no data plan is needed when traveling abroad.

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Town Hall Square on Map

Sight Name: Town Hall Square
Sight Location: Riga, Latvia (See walking tours in Riga)
Sight Type: Attraction/Landmark
Guide(s) Containing This Sight:

Walking Tours in Riga, Latvia

Create Your Own Walk in Riga

Create Your Own Walk in Riga

Creating your own self-guided walk in Riga is easy and fun. Choose the city attractions that you want to see and a walk route map will be created just for you. You can even set your hotel as the start point of the walk.
Riga Old Town Walking Tour

Riga Old Town Walking Tour

The area that is home to present-day Riga has hosted inhabitants since the days of the Vikings. With a sheltered natural harbor nearby, the River Daugava made Riga a stop on the Vikings' Dvina-Dnieper trade route to Byzantium.

Trade allowed the area to flourish, and the Livs, a Finnic tribe, settled it. In the early Middle Ages, the town's economy revolved around fishing, trading, and...  view more

Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.4 Km or 1.5 Miles
Art Nouveau Architecture Walk

Art Nouveau Architecture Walk

An architecture lover in general and that of Art Nouveau in particular will find plenty to look at in the quiet center of Riga. Jūgendstil (Latvian: Art Nouveau) architecture makes up roughly one third of all buildings in the heart of Latvia's capital. In fact, the city boasts the highest concentration of Art Nouveau structures anywhere in the world.

Constructed during a period of rapid...  view more

Tour Duration: 1 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 1.3 Km or 0.8 Miles
Historical Churches and Cathedrals

Historical Churches and Cathedrals

One great thing about Riga is that the majority of its religious sites are concentrated in the historic center. A variety of faiths found in the Latvian capital is fairly broad for such a small country and includes Roman Catholic, Orthodox, and Lutheran, to mention but a few.

The 13th-century Riga Cathedral is perhaps the most significant house of prayer in the city. The imposing mix of...  view more

Tour Duration: 1 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.5 Km or 1.6 Miles

Useful Travel Guides for Planning Your Trip

Traveler's Choice of 12 Uniquely Latvian Souvenirs from Riga

Traveler's Choice of 12 Uniquely Latvian Souvenirs from Riga

Reemerged after regaining independence in the early 1990s, Latvia is anxious to reveal its beauty to the outside world. The country's capital Riga is a good showroom for the country's cultural riches and traditions. Here's the list of the unique Latvian products to look for while in...