Foreign tourists return to Latvian rural areas after last year's caution

Rural tourism in Latvia this summer is doing well compared to the situation last year, when some foreigners feared the Russian war in Ukraine, the Chair of the Latvian Rural Tourism Association, Asnāte Ziemele, said in an interview to Latvian Television on July 17.

Ziemele said foreign travelers are returning to Latvia and “understand that this is not an area that should be feared”.  Still, tourists from Latvia and the rest of the Baltic states visit mostly Latvia's rural areas.

The most frequent guests in Latvian rural areas from farther away come from Scandinavian countries, Germany, Belgium, the Netherlands.

As the most important foreign customers, Ziemele mentioned the Germans who tend to stay in one accommodation for a long time.

Ziemele said that rural tourism providers had been forced to raise prices for services due to rising raw material prices. This is particularly the case for catering. At the same time, she acknowledged that while customers tend to reduce the number of guests at parties, such as weddings, there is no money saving for catering.

Following the productive summer season of domestic rural tourism, this weekend launched a “Home Café Days” campaign which will continue until mid-September. During that time, farms, entrepreneurs and enthusiasts of local communities will open doors to guests, transforming their homes into house cafes.

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