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Neighbourhood of Riga
The Old Town of Riga
The Old Town of Riga
Location of Vecpilsēta in Riga
Location of Vecpilsēta in Riga
Country Latvia
CityFlag of Riga.svg Riga
DistrictCentral District
 • Total0.944 km2 (0.364 sq mi)
 • Total3,336
 • Density3,500/km2 (9,200/sq mi)
Official nameHistoric Centre of Riga
Criteriaii, i
Reference no.[1]
UNESCO regionEurope

Vecrīga ("Old Riga") is the historical center and a neighbourhood (as Vecpilsēta) of Riga, Latvia, located in the Central District on the east side of Daugava River. Vecrīga is famous for its old churches and cathedrals, such as Riga Cathedral and St. Peter's Church.


Vecrīga is the original area of Riga and consists of the historic city limits before the city was greatly expanded in the late 19th century. Vecrīga was once protected by a surrounding wall, except the side adjacent to the Daugava river bank. When the wall was demolished, the waters from Daugava were diverted into area of the former wall, creating Riga City Canal.[2]


In the early 1990s, Vecrīga's streets were closed to traffic and only residents of the area and the local delivery vehicles were allowed within Vecrīga's limits with special permits. Vecrīga is part of a UNESCO World Heritage Site listed as "Historic Centre of Riga", which also includes most of the surrounding Centrs district.[3]

Vecrīga is the oldest part of the Riga, and — even though in its primordial state most of the buildings were made of wood — currently, there are a lot of architectural works remaining from the times of renaissance, baroque and medieval times in the middle of the unique and notable buildings in the style of Art Nouveau, especially the ones created by the locally and internationally well-known architect Mikhail Eisenstein.





See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Riga Historic Centre". UNESCO World Heritage Centre. Retrieved 2022-01-01.
  2. ^ Kadinsky, Sergey "Pilsētas Kanāls, Riga" Hidden Waters Blog July 5, 2016
  3. ^ "World Heritage List — Riga (Latvia); No. 852" (PDF). pp. 3 (67). Retrieved 2009-07-25.

External links[edit]