Where to celebrate Independence Day?

Take note – story published 8 years and 6 months ago

Today, Latvia is turning 97, and Rīga and the rest of Latvia awaits the festivities and memorial events. There'll a grandiose parade held by the National Armed Forces and units of the Interior Ministry, a celebratory event by the Freedom Monument (which turns 80 this year), and various concerts and singing the Latvian anthem at the bank of Daugava. 


Throughout the day - various commemorative events and concerts at churches and halls. 

10:30 - a ceremony of laying flowers by the Freedom Monument.

13:00 - A military parade will be held by the bank of Daugava at 11. Novembra krastmala with the participation of more than 1,000 soldiers from the National Armed Forces, units of the Interior Ministry, and allies in Latvia. The parade will feature combat vehicles, such as the Bradley, along with an Abrams tank. 

19:30 - Celebratory music by the Freedom Monument. 

20:00 - President Raimonds Vējonis' speech.

21:00 - Singing the Latvian national anthem; fireworks at the bank of Daugava river. 


The map below lists some few hundred events that'll be held to celebrate the Latvian Independence Day. Arm yourself with some patience and Google Translate, and you'll find where to celebrate nearby.

  • Daugavpils - At 18:00 the Daugavpils Theater will hold a free concert by the Līgo folk dance ensemble. While at 20:25 the mayor of Daugavpils Jānis Lāčplēsis will address the town. At 21:00 the hymn will be sung, followed by fireworks.  
  • Liepāja - At 17:00 singers Ieva Kerēvica, Andris Ērglis and the Laiks Choir will delight visitors at K. Zāles square. As the concert will end, mayor Uldis Sesks will address the town, and fireworks will fly high.
  • Jelgava - At 17:30 flowers will be laid by the monument to Jānis Čakste, the first president of Latvia, while at 19:00 
  • Jūrmala - Starting from 14:30, locals will start building their yearly 'road of light', lighting more than 7,000 candles across the city. While at 19:30 the celebratory concert will be held with a choir and the Menuets band; fireworks follow. 
  • Ventspils - It seems, the only municipality which has the event descriptions in English. At 18:00 visitors can attend the annual candle lighting ceremony Town Square, helping to form the shape of Latvia with candles. While at 19:00 at Tilta dārzs the main program will start, with pop performances, the singing of the national anthem at 21:00 and fireworks following.
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A recent DNB Latvia Barometer survey suggests that at least 75% of Latvians will be in some way celebrating Independence Day. 

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