Riga Opera House
Riga Opera 2016
Since Latvia regained its independence in 1991, its historic buildings have been restored and the arrival of political and artistic freedom has given a new confidence to the artistic community. This can be seen and heard in the performances of the Latvian National Opera and Ballet as it establishes an international reputation.
Our holidays afford the opera lover opportunities for sightseeing in this beautiful and ancient city as well as attending the opera and ballet performances at the Latvian National Opera. Previously there were performances of the Ring Cycle in honour of Wagner’s bicentenary. Wagner moved to Riga in 1839 to take up the post of director of the opera house. Wagner performances do appear in the current season and the programme is a varied and interesting one.
Operas Abroad is pleased to offer the following packages including:
Private transfers airport/hotel/airport Three hotel nights with breakfast A guided tour of Riga (2 hours)
A best category ticket for the opera or ballet of your choice.
Package price for all the above At the Radisson Blu Ridzene Hotel**** £430 per person.
Extra night £95.
Single room supplement £45 per night.
At the Welton Old Riga Palace Hotel**** £380 per person.
Extra night £60.
Single room supplement £40 per night.
The prices are subject to availability and variation at the time of booking. We will be pleased to tailor the holiday to your requirements: extra nights, different hotels, extra opera or ballet performances, addition sight-seeing, etc.
The Walking Tour of Riga
The walking tour old Riga which is part of the package includes: St. Jacob’s Church, St. Peter’s Church, the Swedish Gates, the Parliament House, the architectural ensemble “Three Brothers”, Riga’s Castle, the House of Blackheads, ensemble of old guilds. A visit to the Dome Cathedral for an organ concert – this organ has 124 stops, 4 manuals and pedals, and 6718 pipes that are placed on 26 wind chests. Riga Cathedral Organ is considered as one of the world’s most valuable historic organs. The included organ concert will normally begin at 12 noon and it last for about 20 minutes.
The Radisson Blu Ridzene Hotel****
The hotel overlooks the Esplanade Park in Riga and is situated just a 5-minute walk from its historic Old Town. It offers spacious rooms with free Wi-Fi and a seating area. All rooms at the Ridzene Hotel are air-conditioned and classically furnished. Each comes with a minibar, safe and cable TV. All have a modern bathroom with a hairdryer and amenities. A varied buffet breakfast is served every morning in the hotel’s elegant restaurant, the Piramida, which specialises in international dishes. Guests can enjoy a drink or a snack at the Ridzene Bar & Library.
The Wellton Old Riga Palace Hotel****
This is an award-winning hotel 100 meters from the banks of the Daugava. Located in a quiet street in Riga’s Old Town, within walking distance from all the main attractions, it offers great-value accommodation with free access to its well-equipped gym. Spa & Wellness with a hot tub and a sauna is also available. The rooms have individual climate control and broadcast satellite TV channels. Some open out on to private balconies, but they all include en-suite bathrooms. Free internet access, ironing facilities and tea/coffee making facilities are available in every room. The elegant lobby-bar features a summer terrace, while the on-site restaurant serves continental and Latvian cuisine with a choice of vegetarian dishes. It is possible to walk to Riga’s Central Station in 10 minutes.
Latvian National Opera Programme
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Additional Sightseeing 1 - A Tour in Art Nouveau (Jugendstile) area (2 hours)
Immerse yourself in Riga’s Art Nouveau (Jugendstile) architecture (one of the biggest areas of this style of buildings in Europe.)
Admire charming façades of the houses as well as visit a Jugendstile Museum. The museum is located in one of the former flats. The flat consists of 12 rooms and represents furniture and home equipment of a wealthy architect in Riga at the end of the 19th / beginning of the 20th century.
Prices: Walking Tour in Art Nouveau Area: English speaking guide: £130 Entrance in Jugendstile museum: 7 EUR/per person
Additional Sightseeing 2 - A Tour to the Latvian Ethnography Open-air Museum (3-4 hours, inc. 20-30 min transfer time)
The Latvian Ethnography Open-air museum is one of the oldest open-air museums in Europe. It is located on the banks of the picturesque Lake Jugla and surrounded by green pine forests and old sand dunes. This is the best place to go if you want to learn more about the countryside of Latvia and Latvian traditions in a brief tour. As mentioned before, historically Riga has been built by Germans, Russians, Swedes, Jewish, Polish. The museum introduces Latvian rural architecture, folk traditions, stories and pagan beliefs. About 100 authentic wooden buildings: farmsteads, windmills, dwelling houses, wooden churches, fishermen villages that date back to the 16th-19th century have been brought here from all regions of Latvia.
During the summer time there are craftsmen working in the museum, making traditional arts and crafts.
If you have time we recommend having a lunch in the museum’s tavern where you can taste Latvian traditional food and have a glass of local beer.
Prices: Car (up to 3 pax) £105 Minivan (up to 6 pax) £165 English speaking guide £150 Entrance fee: 5 EUR/per person
Additional Sightseeing 3 - A Tour to Latvia’s Resort Town, Jurmala (3-4 hrs inc. 30 min transfer time)
Jurmala is located just 25 km from Riga. It is a summer resort-town that has formed of numerous fishermen villages and is famous for its charming wooden cottages, pine forests, the calm River Lielupe, vigorous air and kilometres long golden sand beaches.
The tour leads through the area of former wooden summer cottages and beautifully renovated houses. You will stop in Majori, the heart of the town for a walk along the Jomas Street, the liveliest street of Jurmala passing by small coffee-bars, restaurants of all kind of cuisines and small souvenir shops. The street ends at the Dzintari Concert Hall and the beach of the Gulf of Riga. Enjoy a relaxing walk along the beach, the rustle of the sea waves and wind.
Prices: Car (up to 3 pax) £105 Minivan (up to 6 pax) £165 English speaking guide £150
Additional Sightseeing 4 - A Tour to Rundale Palace (6hrs inc. 1hr 15 min transfer time)
Rundale Palace is a magnificent masterpiece of Baroque and Rococo, and it is often called Latvia’s version of Versailles. It is the biggest palace in the Baltic States and one of the biggest in the northern part of Europe. The palace was built in the 18th century for Ernst Johan von Biron, the Duke of Courland. It was designed by the famous Russian Court architect Bartolomeo Rastrelli, who has also designed the world famous Winter Palace in St. Petersburg. Today this place is subtly restored and 40 of its more than 100 rooms and halls with original interior and furniture are opened for visitors in all their splendour.
A French park that surrounds the palace also designed by F.B.Rastrelli lies in the southern part of the palace territory. It is newly made according to the original design of the 18th century.
Prices: Car (up to 3 pax) £160 Minivan (up to 6 pax) £220 English speaking guide £165
Additional Sightseeing 5 - A Tour to Sigulda and medieval Turaida Castle (6hrs inc. 1hr transfer time)
Historically the town of Sigulda has been one of the most popular recreation areas for locals and the guests from abroad. It will be a nice day tour if you want to see a bit of the countryside of Latvia, as well as to be outside in nature and visit some historical places and learn a bit more about the history and culture of Latvia. Sigulda and its surrounding area historically has been an important centre due to the River Gauja around which several castles and manor houses were built during medieval times and afterwards. Today one of the most popular destinations is medieval red-brick Turaida Castle and its castle tower from which one can enjoy a beautiful bird’s eye-view over the landscapes formed by the River Gauja, its valleys and forests. During the tour you will also take a walk in the surrounding castle’s park with the legendary Grave of the Rose of Turaida and Dainu (Folk Song) Hill, as well as stop at the Gutmanis’ Cave.
During the tour we also suggest stopping for a lunch in a local restaurant and to taste traditional Latvian food.
Prices: Car (up to 3 pax) £160 Minivan (up to 6 pax) £220 English speaking guide £165 Entrance to Turaida Castle and Park: 7 EUR / person