We went through central Latvia to explore some famous castles and palaces. Our first stop was the Castle of Livonian Order in Sigulda. It was built in 1207 in Gauja valley by the Livonian Brothers of the Sword (military order comprised of German “warrior monks”). It was destroyed and rebuilt several times, now remains only ruins. In 1881 new castle was built just next to it by Duke Kropotkin’s family. Then we went to Bauska, where between the rivers Mūsa and Mēmele are located ruins of Bauska Castle from the 15th century and the residence of Duke of Kurzeme from the 16th century. Our final stop was the baroque Palace at Rundāle from the 18th century. It has a nice French-style park with theater, fountain and rose garden.

Sigulda – parking location: 57.1553740N 24.8541640E