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Riga – Varnukrogs – Bolderaja – Riga.

A longer and wilder route for cycling in Riga.

It’s for those of you who aren’t afraid of cycling on bad roads, gravel and sand.  It’s for those of you who enjoy being in nature. And it’s for those of you who like finding adventures everywhere you go. Being so close to the city center, it’s also very easy to find and get to, yet very few do so.

Continue reading to learn more about this route.

1. Riga – Varnukrogs – Bolderaja: Basics

There are several ways how you can go there.

The easiest is to take Riga – Jurmala bike path, and then turn either at Babite (option 1) or Priedaine (option 2). Then cycle to Varnukrogs, and follow the road going to Bolderaja, the nearest one to the river. The worst thing is the first part of cycling back from Bolderaja to Riga; it’s a busy and narrow road.

MY ROUTE – OPTION 1:

DISTANCE: around 23.5 miles / 37.8 km in total.

I started in Tornakalns and followed the railroad tracks at first.

MY ROUTE – OPTION 2:

DISTANCE: around 28 miles / 45 km in total.

I started in Tornakalns and followed the railroad tracks at first.

This time, nearing Bolderaja, I was trying to find a shortcut through the forest. I didn’t want to take the busy road. It seemed to be possible, but I didn’t succeed. There are many forest roads in all directions, and you can get lost.

Both routes go by the Bumbu Hill Firewatch Tower on the way back.

You can rent a bicycle in Riga, and that’s super easy. A cheap bicycle starts from 5 EUR / day.

TIPS: don’t try taking a shortcut through the forest if you don’t feel experienced. You may get lost. There are quite a few forest roads that all look the same, and they are going in all directions.

2. Getting From Riga to Varnukrogs

Road to Varnukrogs

Road to Varnukrogs

The easiest option is to take Riga – Jurmala bike path from the old town.

And then to turn either at Babite (option 1) or Priedaine (option 2).

Both option 1 and option 2 are easy to find and follow. Option 1 is shorter, while option 2 – longer. Being closer to Jurmala, Priedaine is a prettier place and there are more houses in the area. All in all, both options are very similar, and the very last part – which is the prettiest – is the same no matter which road you take.

3. Riga – Varnukrogs – Bolderaja: My Experience

I love this route.

I absolutely love this kind of cycling.

The distance is neither too short nor too long for an afternoon ride. There are some better and some worse roads. There are very few people in the most scenic part of the route. You’re in the nature while being so close to the city.

Here are a few photos from my Riga – Varnukrogs – Bolderaja rides:

Cycling next to railroad in Riga

Cycling next to railroad in Riga

Riga Jurmala bike path in spring

Riga – Jurmala bike path in spring

Babite Varnukrogs road

Babite – Varnukrogs road

Babite Varnukrogs empty road

Cycling on rural road near Riga

Rural forest road near Riga.jpg

Getting close to Varnukrogs

Bicycle in the forest

Trails near Varnukrogs

Varnukrogs street

Varnukrogs

River Lielupe in Varnukrogs

River Lielupe in Varnukrogs

Daugavgriva island as seen from the other side of the river

Daugavgriva island as seen from the other side of the river

River Lielupe

Forest road near Bolderaja

Forest road near Bolderaja

Sandy forest roads near Bolderaja

Sandy forest roads near Bolderaja

Cycling near Varnukrogs

Cycling in the forest near Varnukrogs

Have you been to Latvia? Have you tried cycling in Riga or somewhere else? What was your experience of cycling in Latvia?

1. Book Your Flight. Find cheap flights using Kiwi.com, Momondo.com. Or subscribe to Dollar Flight Club, if you don’t want to be searching for the flights yourself. Momondo usually is my first choice.

2. Book Your Accommodation. Booking.com, Agoda.com and Airbnb. I use Booking and Agoda at least a dozen times a year, and Airbnb – when looking for a long-term stay. My best tip is to ALWAYS compare the price. Sometimes the same hotel is cheaper on Booking.com, other times – on Agoda. Always compare the price!

3. Buy Your Travel Insurance. World Nomads and SafetyWings are two companies I can recommend. World Nomads offers some extra benefits, that will be important for those doing some higher risk activities, while SafetyWings is significantly cheaper. SafetyWings is only $9.25 / week.


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