Three trips, three different reasons...
Ok, so I don't like to visit a place more than once; but there are valid reasons for my three trips to Latvia's Capital, Riga - honest!
The first trip was with David and his cousin's family again in 2005. It was our second city break, and was again for Hollys birthday. There was an addition to this trip in the form of Hollys sister Katie. The six of us spent the weekend seeing most of the sights and trudging around in the snow. We managed to take in the Museum of Occupation, St Peters Church, Freedom Monument, Stockmanns Department Store, Central Market, and the Skyline Bar. I was taken for ice-skating lessons courtesy of Rob & Holly, the second of which was undertaken while Paul & Katie went to the bobsleigh (nutters!!!). Us girls spent an evening at the Ballet (a must if you like the theatre), and it cost us all of £10 each at the Royal Opera House for tickets, a programme, and a drink at the interval. The "men" of the group didn't want to do the "girlie" thing, so they went to Dolls; a strip bar across the road. They spent £100 EACH, and only had one drink...lol. It was also my first experience of walking ON a lake...it was frozen 20ft deep and there were local men fishing through holes they had drilled in the middle.
My second trip was to be the first time I'd take my mum abroad in 2007. We only went for a weekend, and I wanted to go somewhere I sort of knew my way around. I managed to do some of the things I didn't get chance to do the first time round. We visited the Dome Cathedral, Lido, and the House of Blackheads. There was no snow this time, but the rain did prevent us from doing many of the things we would have liked. The Christmas market was on, as it was December when we went, and we also managed a trip to the zoo . We went to the Opera House twice during this trip; once to see La Traviata, and again to see a comedy ballet (which wasn't very good!). It was nice to stay in the same place I had done the first time, and seeing a familiar face in Diga Daga (the lady who owns the b&b) was nice.
My latest trip to Riga was to take my current t'other half Kerry for his birthday. He's football crazy and has a thing about floodlights (not sure it's a healthy obsession!!!). He wanted to visit Skonto Stadium by bus, and I must have spent hours before our trip trying to contact the stadium to arrange a tour to no avail. However, I was right in my prediction that we would see some snow. Being February again, I knew there would be at least some - I didn't realise there would be as much as there was!! We took Digas dog Sara for a walk on Mezaparks Lake, and the snow was up to our knees!!! Visiting the usual places I'd been to before, it was also nice to have plans to do something slightly different. Unfortunately we had to catch the trolley-bus to the stadium, even though it was within walking distance. From the carpark you can see right into Skonto Stadium, and filming Kerry singing with the stadium in the background was an unforgettable experience. We managed to get into the entrance of the stadium, only for security to tell us it was closed. Both using our puppy dog eyes, we must have looked really disappointed, as security promptly went and got their keys to let us onto the main stand! It was fantastic, and hopefully a birthday treat Kerry won't forget (that and the cake I ordered him)