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Two days ago we went on a hike around Melna Ezera Swamp.
There are two popular bog hiking trails near Riga. The most popular one is in Cena Bog, the other one – Great Kemeri Bog. Located a short ride away from Jaunmarupe, Melna Ezera Swamp is even closer to Riga. So if you want to go on a walk in the nature and you enjoy more off the beaten path kind of places, this is the place for you.
Take into account that there is no marked trail.
1. Hiking Around Melna Ezera Swamp: Basics
Melna Ezera Swamp is a nature reserve.
There is no marked trail going all the way around the swamp, but it’s possible to walk around (in any season) or cycle around (when there is no snow). During the winter some parts of it may be covered with deep snow.
TIME & DISTANCE: 8.5 miles / 13.6 km (around 3 hours).
You can also make it into a longer walk — by continuing to Marupe.
We took a taxi from the highway (Bolt app). If you don’t want to do so, you will have to walk for about an hour more to get back to Jaunmarupe, if you will be following the highway. I wouldn’t recommend doing that during the winter, because it’s a busy highway.
TIPS: definitely bring some snacks and water, as there are no shops or anything. Charge your phone and bring a power bank with you. If you will be walking during the winter, keep the power bank somewhere warm.
2. How to Get to Melna Ezera Swamp
The swamp is approximately 2 miles / 3.2 km away from Jaunmarupe.
To get there we used Bolt taxi app. We started walking from Jaunmarupe.
There is a small watchtower a short walk into the swamp here. Set your navigation to this point, and you’ll not get lost. Afterwards just keep following the forest roads going around the swamp.
Or you can take the bus 55 going all the way to Jaunmarupe.
3. Melna Ezera Swamp Hike: My Experience
I had noticed this place on the map a few months ago.
But until last weekend I had no idea what it’s like there and what to expect. Is there a boardwalk like in other swamps in Latvia? I had no idea. Turned out that there isn’t a boardwalk, and there is also not much to do in the swamp itself. At the same time it’s a very cool area for those of us who enjoy wandering in the nature.
And it’s so close to the city.
If you’ll be going there in winter, don’t forget about snow.
1/4 of the way we were walking through ankle-deep snow.
Another thing to take into account is peat harvesting. It’s ongoing. Hence you may see huge tracks and peat harvesting machines. That’s why the area is closed for any motorized traffic, but you can walk or cycle there.
Here are a few photos from our Melna Ezera Swamp hike.
Have you been to Riga? Did you go hiking in Riga or somewhere nearby? What was your experience?