335 Photos - May 18, 2014
Photo: Leaving for the bust to O'HarePhoto: In the train station waiting for the busPhoto: At O'HarePhoto: Our plane to Stockholm, where we caught our next flight to RigaPhoto: We're there!  Looking east on Gerturdis Street with St Gertrude church in the backgroundPhoto: Our first Art Nouveau building in RigaPhoto: Art NouveauPhoto: Art NouveauPhoto: Inside St Gertrude churchPhoto: St GertrudePhoto: Shs is the patron saing of travelersPhoto: Art NouveauPhoto: A Greek Orthodox church in Packer green and goldPhoto: The Russian Orthodox cathedral in RigaPhoto: Matt and a big, orange snailPhoto: Changing of the gaurd at the Freedom MonumentPhoto: Freedom monument - celebrating the war of independence, 1918-1920Photo: "For Fatherland and Freedom"Photo: A sample of Latvian beers - all delicious!Photo: "Beer Snacks," as they are called in Riga:  cheeses, grey peas, peanuts, and garlic toastiesPhoto: Matt after beer snacks in Livu SquarePhoto: These fried garlic bread snacks were available everywhere - they gave us these at the Funny FoxPhoto: Laurie in our breakfast room at the K&G, B&BPhoto: Our breakfast at the K&G came with the room, and only 40 euros/nightPhoto: Laurie outside our room. Note the clock - Riga has lots of public clocksPhoto: The sign for our B&BPhoto: Art Nouveau building, also called "Jugendstil," meaning "Youth Style"Photo: Art NouveauPhoto: Matt in a park with a statue.  Lots of statues and parks in RigaPhoto: Laurie and a big pink snailPhoto: Latvian crows. They are significantly bigger than oursPhoto: Laurie in front of the public market.  The buildings were zepplin hangers during WW IPhoto: The public marketPhoto: Public marketPhoto: The dome of St Peter's ChurchPhoto: The House of the Blackheads, a fraternal group of unmarried merchantsPhoto: House of the BlackheadsPhoto: Blackheads, St Peter's church as seen from Ratslaukums SquarePhoto: The first decorated Christmas tree was on this spot (they meant Xmas, not New Year's)Photo: Laurie in front of the Museaum of the Occupation.  This is the old KGB headquarters in beautiful Soviet stylePhoto: Metzendorf's house - now a museumPhoto: Riga street scenePhoto: A big, green snailPhoto: Statue of Roland in Ratslaukums SquarePhoto: Livu Square - that's a monument to the first Christmas treePhoto: Street scenePhoto: Street scene - the restaurant in the blue building, "1221" serves horse steaks. It was too fancy, but I would have gotten the horse if we would have.Photo: The Dome CathedralPhoto: Museum of the History of Riga & Navigation (awkwardly named)Photo: Note Matt in the second drummerPhoto: One of those peddle bars - probably hard to do on cobblestonePhoto: Matt and a big, black snailPhoto: Monument to the barricades - to the people who defended parliment against the Soviets in 1991.  History is real for LatviansPhoto: Dome Cathedral - Latvian LutheranPhoto: Laurie with a beer and a Black BalsamPhoto: Matt, none to keen on Black BalsamPhoto: Beer snacks, including pork tonguePhoto: This is where we had themPhoto: View from the Museum of War in the Powder TowerPhoto: Laurie and a WW I nursePhoto: Trying to improve her technique to 2st century standardsPhoto: A big, yellow snailPhoto: Matt engaging some statues in Kronvalda ParkPhoto: Kronvalda ParkPhoto: The dome of the Russian Orthodox CathedralPhoto: Comemorating the 1905 RevolutionPhoto: Dinner here on Sunday nightPhoto: Lamb and tomato soupPhoto: Blue cheese saladPhoto: Salted herring with pickles and beetsPhoto: Cuttlefish pastaPhoto: Creme BrûléePhoto: Done with dinnerPhoto: Matt at a fountainPhoto: Freedom Monument honoring the war of independence, 1918 - 1920Photo: The three stars represent the three regions of LatviaPhoto: Riga has lots of beavers, but we didn't see any. They just live their "beautiful, beaver lives" in peace.Photo: The Laima clock.  Laima is a confectionerPhoto: The Cat HousePhoto: The Cat HousePhoto: ArtPhoto: Art NouveauPhoto: Livu SquarePhoto: Dome SquarePhoto: Matt in the Dome CathedralPhoto: Dome CathedralPhoto: Choir chairsPhoto: Bells in Dome Cathedral CourtyardPhoto: Cathedral courtyard.  Not sure what the big chicken is all aboutPhoto: Cannons stored in the Dome Cathedral courtyardPhoto: Dome Cathedral CourtyardPhoto: Those same bellsPhoto: Dome CathedralPhoto: The Castle of Light - Riga's new library. It's not yet openedPhoto: The "Three Brothers," The one of the left was built in the 15th century, the other two  in the 17th centuryPhoto: Three BrothersPhoto: Laurie at the Swedish Gate built in 1698 when the Swedes controlled RigaPhoto: Can't recall the building, but it's covered with coats of armsPhoto: Kronvalda ParkPhoto: Locks on a bridge in Kronvalda ParkPhoto: That's a lot of locksPhoto: People put them on when they get marriedPhoto: Kronvalda ParkPhoto: HelloPhoto: Laurie with Freedom MonumentPhoto: Photo: A teachers' protestPhoto: We don't know what they were protesting, but probably something to do with Scott WalkerPhoto: Four statues come out of that boxPhoto: Laurie with Field Marshall de TollyPhoto: He fought with the Russians against NapoleonPhoto: Roast pork with potatoes, cole slaw, and cucumbers & tomatoes at BufetPhoto: Chicken & mushrooms over rice at BufetPhoto: Art Nouveau buildingPhoto: Art Nouveau walkPhoto: Art Nouveau buildingPhoto: Art Nouveau buildingPhoto: Art Nouveau buildingPhoto: Art Nouveau buildingPhoto: Art Nouveau buildingPhoto: Art Nouveau buildingPhoto: Art Nouveau buildingPhoto: Art Nouveau buildingPhoto: Art Nouveau buildingPhoto: Art Nouveau buildingPhoto: Art Nouveau buildingPhoto: Art Nouveau buildingPhoto: Art Nouveau buildingPhoto: Stopping for a beerPhoto: Or wine...Photo: Bus schedulePhoto: Breakfast wasn't till 8:00AM, so they put out some things for us for Tuesday morning whene we had to catch an early busPhoto: Dinner at IstabaPhoto: Bread with spreadsPhoto: Salad with cheesePhoto: Sides of rice and potatoesPhoto: Duck leg at Istaba - fabulous!Photo: Sea Bass - the best meal we had!Photo: A small beverage for LauriePhoto: It would be better if that bar ran the other wayPhoto: Bus to Vilnius leaves from Platform 1APhoto: Bernardinu B&B in Vilnius, LithuaniaPhoto: Our street in VilniusPhoto: Cathedral Square in Vilnius with the bell towerPhoto: Grand Duke GediminasPhoto: Gediminas and the iron wolfPhoto: The cathedralPhoto: Our first Lithuanian beersPhoto: FriesPhoto: Beef with potatoes and grilled vegetablesPhoto: Chicken and green saladPhoto: Laurie and a dog with glassesPhoto: Laurie about to swingPhoto: Photo: We stumbled upon this building that wasn't on our mapPhoto: Really nicePhoto: But why the razor wire?  It's a prison!Photo: You lock these upright to save your parking spacePhoto: This is a common brick style in VilniusPhoto: Wine and fried bread snacksPhoto: Art Nouveau in VilniusPhoto: Vilnius University bell towerPhoto: Our roomPhoto: Our roomPhoto: Our roomPhoto: Our roomPhoto: Our roomPhoto: Our roomPhoto: Breaded chickenPhoto: Zepplins, a traditional Lithuanina food - a potato dough stuffed with cheesePhoto: St Anne's church right by our B&BPhoto: Tree artPhoto: St Anne'sPhoto: St AnnePhoto: St Anne's wooden alterPhoto: The organ at St Anne'sPhoto: St Anne's from the backPhoto: St Anne'sPhoto: Laurie by the Vilnia RiverPhoto: Sereikiskiu ParkPhoto: Sereikiskiu ParkPhoto: Sereikiskiu ParkPhoto: The bike paths in Vilnius often are on the sidewalksPhoto: A photo on display in Cathedral Square.  Red Army Go Home!Photo: Cathedral SquarePhoto: Gedimias TowerPhoto: The National MuseumPhoto: The Funicular to Gedimias HillPhoto: The FunicularPhoto: Looking upPhoto: View from the funicular going up Gediminas HillPhoto: The towerPhoto: Photo: We actually were together on this tripPhoto: VilniusPhoto: Vilnius from Gediminas HillPhoto: St Anne's from Gediminas HillPhoto: Three Crosses monument where three monks were crucuified in the 16th century (I think)Photo: Note the safety vests on those little kidsPhoto: Gediminas HillPhoto: Gediminas HillPhoto: The funicular on its way up to get usPhoto: The chestnut trees were in bloom and were everywhere in both citiesPhoto: Stebukla means miricle.  This was the southern end point of the "Baltic Way," a human chain from Vilnius to Tallinn demanding freedom from the Soviets.  Almost makes you cry.Photo: Photo: Photo: Laurie on an interesting bench with three bears eating toastPhoto: Three Muses at the Vilnuis TheaterPhoto: Boy, you can't do anything down that street!Photo: Some things don't work in all languagesPhoto: This does make you cryPhoto: Laurie in a KGB holding cellPhoto: Monument to the Lithuanian genocide victimsPhoto: Lukiskiu SquarePhoto: Photo: Now, who could that be?Photo: I got it!Photo: Ha!Photo: This is a common look for churches in VilniusPhoto: A very cool dandilion fountainPhoto: Laurie at RenePhoto: That place must have good foodPhoto: Beef and tomato soup at RenePhoto: Chicken livers, carmalized onions, and baked applesPhoto: It was the special of the dayPhoto: A fountain at Town Hall squarePhoto: Photo: Water!Photo: I can't recall the names of all these churchesPhoto: Now here you can have fun!Photo: Literatu g.Photo: Tributes to Lithuanian authorsPhoto: Photo: Manhole cover with St ChristopherPhoto: St ChristopherPhoto: ChurchPhoto: We walked down this street about 5:30PM and the churches were having well attended servicesPhoto: Looking down the main drag, Pilies g.Photo: The Gates of Dawn at the South end of Pilies g.Photo: Gates of DawnPhoto: Small holocaust memorial.  Hitler killed nearly all of the 70,000 Jews in VilniusPhoto: Enjoying a Lithuanian beerPhoto: The Vilnius U bell towerPhoto: Balloons over the cityPhoto: Wine snacks!  Really, they have wine snacks, too!Photo: Rabbit with potatoes at Uzipios KlasiksPhoto: Pasta with chickenPhoto: Our B&BPhoto: This happy guy is outside the UniversityPhoto: Breakfast on our last day in Vilnius. Omlet with tomatoes and pickelsPhoto: Crepes with mushroom saucePhoto: The courtyards at Vilnius UniversityPhoto: Sts Johns' Cathedral at Vil UPhoto: Sts Johns'Photo: Stained glassPhoto: Sts Johns' CathedralPhoto: The courtyards at Vilnius UniversityPhoto: The courtyards at Vilnius UniversityPhoto: Vilnius U has 23,000 studentsPhoto: Vilnius UPhoto: The courtyards at Vilnius University - not sure where all those students arePhoto: The courtyards at Vilnius UniversityPhoto: The bus back to Rigas.  The countryside looks like WisconsinPhoto: Photo: The Latvian Academy of Science buildingPhoto: Also known as Stalin's Birthday cakePhoto: Note the Hammer & SicklesPhoto: What's left of the Grand Synagogue in Riga. The Nazis burned it down with the entire congregation inside. No one survived.Photo: Monument to the Holocaust.  The supports have the names of the non-Jews who tried to prevent Jewish culture from being crushedPhoto: Photo: The train bridge over the Daugava river in RigaPhoto: The train bridge over the Daugava river in RigaPhoto: These were the best garlic toasties we had all trip!Photo: Photo: Pork knuckle with roasted garlic at LasitePhoto: Pork steak with potatoes and vegetablesPhoto: Matt, Carol, and Laurie on Carol's last day in Riga.Photo: Miekla Kapi (cemetery) chaplePhoto: Mikela KapiPhoto: Mikela KapiPhoto: Mikela KapiPhoto: It's like it's a well tended forestPhoto: Mikela KapiPhoto: Note all the fernsPhoto: Soviet soldierPhoto: Nazis or Soviets:  It wasn't a "good war" for the LatviansPhoto: Monument to a naval vessel that went down on May 15, 1943Photo: Monument to a naval vessel that went down on May 15, 1943Photo: Monument to a naval vessel that went down on May 15, 1943Photo: Photo: Flower vendors outside the cemeteryPhoto: The Great GraveyardPhoto: The Great GraveyardPhoto: Photo: These wodded buildings are commonPhoto: Wooden buildingsPhoto: Wooden buildingsPhoto: Beer snacksPhoto: That tram is washing the tracksPhoto: The Russian Orthodox CathedralPhoto: Lookng up the staircase at the Art Noveau museumPhoto: Art Nouveau BuildingsPhoto: Art Nouveau BuildingPhoto: Photo: A section of the Berlin WallPhoto: Photo: Kronvalda parkPhoto: Kronvalda parkPhoto: It's a fabulous parkPhoto: Kronvalda parkPhoto: Lots of fountains and statuesPhoto: Kronvalda parkPhoto: Street fries with garlic saucePhoto: St Peter's Lutheran ChurchPhoto: The tower at St Peter's ChurchPhoto: TulipsPhoto: Not sure why, but people were getting their picture taken with this sculpturePhoto: The noses of these creatures are all polishedPhoto: The Funny Fox!  We stopped here on our first nightPhoto: Photo: Kronvalda parkPhoto: Kronvalda parkPhoto: From the 26th floor of the Raddison Blu hotelPhoto: You can see Laurie's reflection in the glassPhoto: The Russian Orthodox Church and Freedom Monument off in the distancePhoto: Photo: St Vincent'sPhoto: Hari Krishna'sPhoto: Laurie thinks they need another songPhoto: Their center was right by our B&BPhoto: Riga has something like 750 Art Noveau buildingsPhoto: Our last dinner:  Arugula with veal liver saladPhoto: Arugula with shrimp.  They did not translate arugula as "rocket" as we see so many placesPhoto: Pasta with rabbitPhoto: Fruiti de mare with spaghatti