Once home to Soviet army officers tasked with spying on the West, today the Latvian town of Irbene is the site of advanced space research. The VIRAC has given a new lease of life to the two giant radio telescopes it inherited.
This eel-like creature in Latvia is much more than a simple food item. The lamprey contributes to the identity of some coastal towns. Every year, locals and visitors indulge in festivals dedicated to the fish.
If only camping trips weren’t so challenging… Latvia’s BeTriton has a solution! Their amphibious electric vehicle allows crossing terrain and water at ease and eliminates the need to pitch a tent at night.
A distant relative of Spanish gazpacho, the cold soup of Lithuania, Poland, and Latvia involves beetroot instead of tomato. The one ingredient they do share is cucumber. Both suit their respective climates at either end of Europe.
Vilhelms Purvītis laid the foundations for Latvian landscape painting. His emotive works capture the fragile beauty of nature throughout the seasons in unrivaled detail. Still today, he is a revered cultural figure.
Organs-on-a-chip are not a thing of nightmares. Quite the contrary, Latvian startup, Cellbox Labs, is pioneering a way for this smart technology to revolutionize drug discovery.
A man of many talents, Raimonds Pauls is best known for his work as a composer and pianist. Fast approaching 90 years of age, the acclaimed Latvian musician still performs, charming audiences with his catchy melodies.
Residents of Valka, Latvia, and Valga, Estonia, come and go freely, living in one country and shopping, studying, or working in the other, illustrating the human value of open borders. Visitors can explore both within a day or two.
You could be forgiven for thinking a blue cow is something out of fiction. But it is, in fact, real and roams the fields of Latvia along with another local breed – the Latvian Brown.
In true start-up fashion, Fermentful took two existing products – buckwheat and kefir – and found how they could work together to create something new. Their plant-based drinks are a gut-and-planet-friendly alternative to the original dairy beverage.
Rye bread is a staple of the Latvian diet. Delicious by the slice, it's also a key ingredient in several unusual sweet and savory recipes. You can try many of them at themed festivals and stops along the Rye Road tourism route.
People all over the world wear pants, bras, and pajamas made in Latvia. A lot of the garments originate from Liepāja. How did this coastal city become the Northern country’s unofficial capital of lingerie?
The emotive architecture of one of Riga's most prominent buildings speaks of the Latvian nation's strength, courage, and endurance. This is the home of the National Library of Latvia – a contemporary center of knowledge and culture.
Some of Riga's wooden buildings date as far back as the 18th century. Witnesses of wars, power struggles, and transformation, the sturdy structures are a living archive. What is their status today?
A song, which some Latvians would like to see become the national anthem, has become an unofficial anthem of a faraway place - Catalonia. The Catalan independence movement gave the song new lyrics and meaning with the composer's blessing.
Found in bathroom cabinets around Latvia, the ointment is said to help ease colds and soothe burns and muscle aches in humans and pets. While several products co-exist on the market, only one claims to be the real Evija.
The RAF Latvija minibus, a close relative of the Volkswagen Type 2, never managed to achieve the same legendary status as its competitor beyond the borders of the Soviet Union. But then again, it was little more than an inferior copy, after all.
Never ones to leave their guests hungry, on one particular day of the year, Latvians load the table with nine foods. Traditionally, this was Yuletide to mark the winter solstice. Today, many celebrate Christmas but still keep up with tradition, too.
Developing since the 1980s, Latvia's sea buckthorn industry is now well and truly ripe. Not only is export on the rise, but growers are creating new products to introduce people to the vitamin-packed berry and its powers.
Koffeco, a sustainably-minded science-based startup from Latvia, sees spent coffee grounds as a resource. The team transforms organic waste into new products, contributing to a circular economy.
A ritual of great importance on Latvian family calendars, the Cemetery Festival gathers relatives from near and far. The curious day’s events are less about mourning and more about celebrating life and togetherness.
Far from a centuries-old tradition, cider making in Latvia arose in the 1990s. Since then, the industry has blossomed, and cider makers and pub owners have united to create a local Cider Route - a rival to the wine routes of Western Europe?
What to do with an overgrown piece of land in a bustling capital city whose residents live mostly in apartments? One active community in Riga founded urban gardens, illustrating the potential of transforming derelict plots into added value for a city.