Riga is the capital of Latvia and is home to over half a million people, which is actually around a third of the entire population of Latvia! Riga lies on the beautiful shores of the Gulf of Riga, where the Daugava River meets the Baltic Sea.
Whether you are heading to Riga for the sports, the theatres, or the abundance of art nouveau architecture you probably have a question or two about where to stay in Riga. Where oh where art the Riga accommodation options that are right for you?
Look no further than our Riga neighborhood guide. We put our expert travel writers to work digging for all the best neighborhoods in Riga and all the best Riga accommodation finds. The work is over! The secrets have been unearthed! We are officially ready to unveil all there is to know about the best areas to stay in Riga.
So here is our Riga neighborhood guide that is the answer to your where to stay in Riga prayers. We’ll outline where you should stay if you’re looking for cool vibes, epic nightlife, or when the budget is tight.
Quick Tips – Where to Stay in Riga
- Where to stay in Riga for the first time – Kipsala
- Where to stay in Riga on a budget – Mežaparks
- Best area to stay in Riga for nightlife – Old Town Riga
- Coolest place to stay in Riga – Miera Iela
- Best neighborhood in Riga for families – Agenskalns
- Enjoy both local and international cuisine at Restaurant Ostas Skati
- Take a dip in the Kipsala Swimming Pool, the largest pool in Riga
- Take a walk around the City Yacht Club and admire all the boats
Ready to book already? We’ll cut to the chase and tell you where to stay in Riga and our three highest recommendations for Riga accommodation.
Best Hostel in Riga: Tree House Hostel
Tree House Hostel is a fun hostel that offers guests an incredible free breakfast each morning. The facilities are all clean and comfortable, and the staff are friendly. It’s located close to all the nightlife, so you won’t have to walk far to find where the party is at!
Need to spend some quality time with fellow backpackers? Get your fix by staying at one of these amazing hostels in Riga!View on HostelWorld
Best AirBnB in Riga: Riga House Boat
Do you want to stay in another apartment or homestay or do you want to stay in a houseboat? But really though, how does a houseboat sound!? For those who are not bothered by the water, enjoy staying on this small yacht.
It sure does make for a memorable stay. Free parking is available on the premises and there is a restaurant in the harbor for those who want to enjoy a meal or a cocktail without having to wander far.View on Airbnb
Best Hotel in Riga: Riga Islande Hotel
We love the Riga Islande Hotel in Kipsala, located right at the heart of this tiny island. This Riga hotel won’t disappoint as it comes with all the comforts you could desire. From a fabulous buffet breakfast to a bowling alley, the Riga Islande Hotel truly has it all!View on Booking.com
Quick Summary: The Best Places to Stay in Riga
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Old Town Riga
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Riga is a charming city that is filled with history. It’s narrow cobblestone streets and bright, colorful squares paired with the Medieval-era buildings make for an architectural melting pot. You’ll encounter dozens of buildings from gothic to modern to baroque to art nouveau!
In fact, Riga is known for having the most impressive collection of art nouveau buildings in all of Europe.
Hats of to you, Riga! There’s also an Art Nouveau Museum that you can pop into to learn the ins and outs of Art Nouveau. Make sure to snap many photos of the unusual gargoyle statues that are sprinkled through the Old Town. They’re truly unique!
Riga also has an exciting food scene happening and each of Riga’s neighborhoods has some incredible restaurants and cafes to sample some traditional Latvian dishes. Fabrikas Restaurant in an old converted factory is especially notable.
We also adore Restaurant 3. With it’s uncreative name, you might be surprised that Restaurant 3 whips up some of the most creative food in town, including wild garlic chocolate cake!
If you’re looking for a slice of bohemian paradise, Riga is brimming with more than just one hip place! The Spikerli Quarter is filled with converted warehouses made into art spaces, the Kalnciems Quarter has taken wooden houses and turned them into cute cafes, however it’s really Miera Iela that is the capital of all that is hip and hipster in Riga.
Miera Iela translates to Peace Street and is teeming with vintage shops, artist haunts, and the bohemian and beyond!
This Baltic beauty is chock full of things to do and see in wonderful neighborhoods. Are you ready for more? Let’s go over the best neighborhoods to stay in Riga.
Riga’s 5 Best Neighborhoods to Stay in
Drumroll please…. here are the top five best neighborhoods to stay in Riga! Grab yourself a cup of chai, or coffee, or maybe even a mimosa and let’s the knowledge sharing begin!
Old Town Riga is also known as Central Riga. It is the historical and geographical center of the city. Wandering along the cobblestone streets you will come across dozens of architectural gems from the looming Medieval buildings with craftsmen and artist houses, to the old churches.
Old Town Riga is composed of an incredible array of historical buildings constructed in a myriad of architectural styles. In fact, there are 500 buildings built in styles from Gothic to Baroque and everything in between!
Old Town Riga is also where the party is happening! Turn up the music and keep the beer flowing at the abundant bars and clubs. From the masculine Armory Bar to the cheeky Funny Fox Pub to the sports style Kiwi Bar, there are more than a few hot spots for nightlife in Old Town Riga.
The best area to stay in Riga for nightlife is definitely the Old Town. There are no entrance fees at the majority of the clubs and bars, so get ready to spend those extra euros on a night out on the town!
Things to See and Do in Old Town Riga
– Hike to the top of the St. Peter’s Church Tower and take in the views of the city below
– Visit the Powder Tower which houses the Latvian War Museum that has excellent educational exhibits about the military and political history of Latvia
– Tour the gorgeous medieval Riga Castle
– Dine in delight at Restaurant 3 and sample their most creative culinary creations
– Check out the various craftsmen and artist houses in Old Town
– Take in the views from the Skyline bar located on the top floors of a hotel that gives great city views
– Indulge in all the chocolate your heart desires at Black Magic
– Enjoy traditional Eastern European food at Rasols
Best Hostel in Old Town Riga: Tree House Hostel
The Tree Hostel Hostel is located right in the heart of Old Town Riga! With a nice free breakfast, and comfy beds this is a great Hostel in Riga. It has both a communal feel and hippy vibes. We do appreciate the giant, secure lockers too!View on HostelWorld
Best AirBnB in Old Town Riga: Big apartment in the heart of Old Town
This one bedroom and one-and-a-half bathroom apartment has two beds and can sleep three guests. It’s located in the heart of Old Town and is one of the best places to stay in Riga!
It’s an absolutely jaw-dropping apartment, with floor to ceiling windows and stylish vibes. We’re talking super stylish, folks! Rent this Airbnb and get 65 square meters of Riga paradise.View on Airbnb
Best Hotel in Old Town Riga: Hilton Garden Inn Riga Old Town
The Hilton Garden Inn isn’t any old regular hotel. This truly modern building is bursting with unique style and designs. There is a state of the art fitness center and a stellar onsite restaurant. Get ready to have your breath taken away by this incredible hotel right in the heart of Old Town.View on Booking.com
Agenskalns sits on the left bank of the Daugava River and is one of the best neighborhoods in Riga. It was built mainly in the 19th century and is filled with tiny wooden houses that up the charm factor here in Agenskalns.
The main draw to the Agenskalns neighborhood, by locals and tourists alike, is the vibrant indoor market where you can find everything from fresh local produce to clothing.
Given the more relaxed atmosphere of Agenskalns, it makes this neighborhood the best neighborhood in Riga for families. It is also home to many incredible parks and lovely green spaces. Not to mention this district’s small slice of waterfront.
It’s a small neighborhood too, totalling in less than 5 square kilometers in size. It’s green, small, quiet, and charming— Agenskalns is definitely where to stay in Riga with kids.
Things to See and Do in Agenskalns
– Visit the National Library, called the Castle of Light
– Spend hours wandering around the Agenskalns Market picking up all kinds of fun souvenirs
– Go for a walk along the waterfront
– Try the hamburgers at Street Burgers (Meza) that even have vegetarian options for the healthy humans out there
– Indulge your sweet tooth at the delectable pastry shop Ciemakukulis
– Enjoy a walk in Victory Park (Uzvaras Park)
– Have dinner on the waterfront at Panorama Restaurant and Bar
– Visit the local history museum—Eduards Smi??is Theater Museum— with some curious exhibits from light fixtures to weaving looms
Best Hostel in Agenskalns: Two Wheels
Two Wheels is an absolutely incredible hostel with nearly unparalleled value for your money. This is one Riga Hostel you surely won’t forget. It’s far away from the busy streets, yet not too far from the top tourist attractions. You’ll love the pub inside the hostel too with it’s fun, social vibes!View on HostelWorld
Best AirBnB in Agenskalns: 3-room apartment in charming area
Enjoy this stylish and modern three bedroom apartment that is definitely our top recommendation for where to stay in Riga with kids! When you rent this Airbnb in one of the best neighborhoods in Riga, you’re sure to be swept away by the peace and quiet of Agenskalns paired with the comfort of this rental.
There is free parking, an indoor fireplace, and a fully equipped kitchen. There is also room to sleep five people comfortably. This is a true gem in Riga!View on Airbnb
Best Hotel in Agenskalns: Park Inn by Radisson Riga Valdemara
This hotel in Riga is an enormous and modern building that has all the amenities you could wish for. They even offer cooking classes at the hotel! And it’s animal friendly to top it off. Some hotels have free parking and fast wifi, this one has all you could dream of and more.View on Booking.com
Mežaparks lies in the Northern District of Riga, on the Western shore of Lake Kisezers. Mežaparks actually directly translates to “forest park” and it was built mainly in the early 20th century. Mežaparks is one of the world’s very first garden cities!
Mežaparks is known for its immense parks which actually dominate the entire district. There is more land for parks in Mežaparks than there is for houses and businesses. It’s practically a 75% to 25% ratio here, people!
Mezaparks is also situated right on the beautiful Lake Kisezers and is perfect for summertime lake activities from windsurfing to waterskiing!
In this green oasis, there are a number of charming accommodation options and sweet cafes and shops to explore. There is also the Rigas National Zoo, where you can see over 450 species of animals and birds, including giraffes and flamingos!
Things to See and Do in Mežaparks
– Go for a long afternoon hike through Mežaparks
– Visit the Rigas National Zoo and say hello to the lion and monkeys for us
– Snag a cup of coffee or a slice of pizza at Summertime Cafe
– Play a round of disc golf at UFOGOLF disc golf course in the park
– Catch a show at the outdoor Green Theatre inside the park itself
– Take a sculpture tour through the park and snap tons of photos of the unique and bizarre sculptures that line the park’s paths
– Enjoy a luxurious meal on the shore at Resto Terase pie ??šezera
– Go windsurfing or waterskiing on Lake Kisezers
Best Airbnb in Mežaparks: Arty Woodenhouse with Huge Garden
This Arty Woodenhouse with Huge Garden Airbnb in Mežaparks is quite the unique find. For well under $20 a night you can fit up to four guests in the three beds and one private bath that comes with this rental.
While this Airbnb is just for a private room in the house, you will feel like you’re walked into another world. It’s unique, eclectic, and will make for a truly memorable and budget friendly stay in Riga!View on Airbnb
Best Airbnb in Mežaparks: Charming and spacious family apartment with yard
This Airbnb is for an entire apartment in Mežaparks, one of the best neighborhoods in Riga for it’s greenery, peace, and quiet. With two bedrooms and one bathroom, you’ll feel right at home in Mežaparks.
For less than $30 a night, this place is a steal! Make sure to take advantage of the spacious yard for your morning yoga session. You might even spot a hedgehog or two wandering around!View on Airbnb
Best Hotel in Mežaparks: Hotel Mežaparks
Rooms at the Hotel Mezaparks starts as low as 30euros, dependent on the season of course. However, this hotel is situated right on the shore of the stunning Lake Kisezers, just a quick 15-minute drive away from the Old Town Riga.
Enjoy cozy and quaint rooms that are charmingly decorated. Our favorite part is that most rooms have balconies that offer incredible lake views!View on Booking.com
Kipsala is one of the real gems in Riga. Filled with carefully and thoughtfully renovated wooden houses, Kipsala is actually an island that sits between the Zunda Channel and the Daugava River. Wondering just how big this island is? We’re talking 2.7km long and 500meters wide.
To get to Kipsala, all you have to do is cross the Vansu bridge or hop on public transportation. In all actuality, Kipsala is just a brief 20 minute walk from the center of Riga or a zippy bus ride away. It’s one of Riga’s best neighborhoods given its proximity to the city center and its island vibes.
Expect great views of Old Riga across the water and enjoy spending time at the Kipsala beach! Kipsala is one of the best areas to stay in Riga and to make your holiday a memorable one. If you’re wondering where to stay in Riga for your first time, we think Kipsala is the way to go!
Things to See and Do in Kipsala
– Admire the old restored wooden buildings as you enjoy exploring the island
– Visit Lipkes Memorial, a man who bravely hid and saved more than 50 Jews during WWII
– Try the seafood at the fabulous Fabrika Restaurant housed in a former factory building
– Check out what exhibitions are happening at the Kipsala International Exhibition Center
– Go for a swim in the Daugava River and hang around on their slice of sandy beach
– Enjoy both local and international cuisine at Restaurant Ostas Skati
– Take a dip in the Kipsala Swimming Pool, the largest pool in Riga
– Take a walk around the City Yacht Club and admire all the boats
Best Airbnb in Kipsala: New Studio apartment – Riverstone
This apartment is located on the first floor of a modern apartment building and is accessible by a secure keypad. Flexible check in is a bonus here! It’s a one bedroom and one bathroom studio apartment, that also allows guests access to the pool. It’s comfortable and cozy and will put you in a great spot to explore Kipsala and beyond.View on Airbnb
Best Airbnb in Kipsala: Riga HouseBoat
Who wants to stay in another boring apartment when you can stay in a houseboat? This is perfect for a romantic getaway or for a more adventurous solo travelers. It’s a small yacht with one bedroom and one shared bathroom. Enjoy this memorable stay in Riga, by staying on the water itself!View on Airbnb
Best Hotel in Kipsala: Riga Islande Hotel
The Riga Islande Hotel is a gorgeous hotel that has all the bells and whistles. You’ll enjoy your classical interior designs and nice wooden furniture. What’s more? This hotel even has its own bowling alley!
There is a huge buffet breakfast that is complementary with your stay and the restaurant serves food all day long from international to local cuisine.View on Booking.com
Miera Iela is a hipster lovers dream! Also known as Peace Street, Miera Iela is the coolest place to stay in Riga. With funky cafes and vintage shops and an abundance of art galleries and vintage shops, Miera Lela is where to go if you’re looking to walk on the cool side.
Make sure you wander the streets with your eyes peeled for all the hidden and hip gems you’ll find sprinkled throughout this district. We’re not talking sapphires and rubies, but unique stores and undiscovered cafes. Miera Iela is one of the best areas in Riga to stay in if you want to let your bohemian flag fly!
There are true treasures to be found not just in the antique stores in Miera Iela but also in hip spots like Taka Bar with their homemade apple wine and local beers to the Laima Chocolate Museum where you can sample chocolate magic.
Things to See and Do in Miera Iela
– Indulge in tiny pieces of chocolate heaven at Laima Chocolate Museum
– Sample some homemade apple wine at the trendy Taka Bar
– Go shopping for unique finds at 20.gadsimts
– Walk under the prayer flags and dine in comfort at the Himalaya Restaurant that is an excellent option for vegetarians
– Go souvenir shopping at Buteljons for sustainable art
– Check out this cozy and nearly undiscovered Loja Cafe
Best Hostel in Miera Iela: Avitar
Avitar sits just on the edge of Miera Iela, keeping it close to Old Town Riga and the city center too. It’s just a 2.5km walk to Old Town if you fancy yourself a nice walk. The complimentary breakfast is great. The rooms are a bit on the plain side, but if you’re looking for where to stay in Miera Iela on a budget, Avitar is for you!View on HostelWorld
Best Airbnb in Miera Iela: Cozy apartment in the hearth of hipster Riga
You got it, this Airbnb is the perfect place to stay in Miera Iela. It’s chic and cozy, filled with fluffy pillows and house plants. This airbnb rental in Riga is perfect for two guests as it has two beds and one bathroom. It has a kitchen and there is free parking on the premises. Snuggle up in your slice of bohemian paradise in this cozy studio apartment.View on Airbnb
Best Hotel in Miera Iela: Hotel Kert
The quaint and comfortable Hotel Kert is a peaceful bed and breakfast There is a common area kitchen as well, stocked with tea, coffee, and fresh produce. We love this hotel and its charming personality. Being located in Miera Iela, and at a reasonable price, Hotel Kert is one of the best places to stay in Riga.View on Booking.com
Final Thoughts on Where to Stay in Riga
Riga, Latvia is a true Baltic beauty. We love its alchemical blend of the hip and the historic, With its charming neighborhoods, from the green oasis of Mezaparks to the bohemian vibes of Miera Iela, there’s many faces to Riga. We happen to love them all!
The best hostel in Riga is the Tree House Hostel that is close to all the nightlife, yet still has chill vibes.
If you’re looking for our top recommendation for the best hotel in Riga, look no further than the Riga Islande Hotel that has everything from a buffet breakfast to a bowling alley!
If you want to stay in a home away from home, why not upgrade to a houseboat? Stay in the Riga House Boat for a truly memorable stay or for a super romantic getaway!
Have any Riga pearls of wisdom to share? We’re all about those pearls! Please drop us a note in the comments below.
Don’t forget to sort your travel insurance! We’ve put together a roundup of the best travel insurance for backpackers – check it out here, or if you’re low on time, get a quote from World Nomads now, our favourite travel insurance provider.
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