Flights to Valmiera
People have been living around Valmiera for several thousand years. The modern city spans the Gauja River and is a very picturesque place to visit. Valmiera is in the historical Vidzeme Region of Northern Latvia, 100 kilometres from the capital, Riga.
The nearest international airport for flights to Valmiera is the Riga International Airport (airport code: RIX). It’s 100km away, and there are regular buses and trains between Riga and Valmiera for convenient access.From South Africa most flights to Valmiera have one connection, such as with South African Airways or Lufthansa. They both connect in Frankfurt. KLM makes one stop-over in Amsterdam for their flight to Valmiera. If you fly with Austrian Airlines, there are transfers in Frankfurt as well as in Vienna.
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The Tourist Attractions of Valmiera:
Gauja National Park
Gauja National Park is just south-west of Valmiera, and it’s the largest national park in the country. There are a few towns within the park so it’s not just all wilderness. But there are many places where you can go walking, and the sandstone cliffs along the river are a popular place. Also within the boundaries of the park, but quite a bit farther south from Valmeira is Turaida Castle. It’s a red-brick construction in Gothic style, built in 1214 though much has been restored. It would be a pleasant drive along the park to visit.
Valmiera Museum of Regional History and Art
The local museum has many great exhibits on the region’s history, and it’s located in the old quarter of Valmiera. There are reconstructed homes on the site that house their collections.
Valmeira Castle was originally built in the 13th century, but was greatly damaged and burned in a 1702 battle. There are only ruins and pieces of fortifications left but it is a good place to see some very old Valmeira history. The Valmiera Museum just mentioned is nearby, as are other historical and re-created buildings.
The Gauja River
The river goes right through Valmiera and offers a nice opportunity to walk along the water without having to travel very far. There are several nice bridges over the river and places where you can walk in comfort.
This small brewery makes traditional Latvian beer, and is located not far outside of Valmiera. You can take a tour of their factory and have a few samples of beer when you’re done.
The much larger city of Riga is not far away, and would make a good afternoon trip if you wanted some shopping and a chance to see more historical Latvian sights. They have several 13th century churches and cathedrals, museums, and many neighbourhoods filled with Art Nouveau architecture. There is a busy central marketplace in Riga, and a small zoo.
When Should You Visit?:
The winters in Valmiera are cold, so you should definitely plan your trip for the summer months if you can. It will be around freezing or colder from early December until March. Summers are comfortably warm, reaching around 21C (70F) between June and August. These months are the best for sight-seeing around Valmiera though May and September are very nice as well.