Pārdaugava, which literally means "over Daugava" or "across the Daugava", is a part of Riga, comprising the west bank of Daugava river.
The international airport is located here, and the airport bus (#22) stops at several places in Pārdaugava on it's way to the central railway station. There is also a dense network of trams, buses and trolleybuses providing access from other parts of Riga. Getting in by car can also be an option.
The left Bank of the Daugava River in Riga is less frequently visited by tourists. The following attractions are there:
- 1 Ķīpsala (Cross the Vanšu bridge over the Daugava). An island in the city centre with Nordic dwelling architecture and a beach that is very popular in the summer.
- 2 Riga TV Tower, Zaķusalas krastmala (Zaķusala), ☏ . A 368 meter-high tower built of concrete and standing on three legs, this is the tallest tower in the European Union. It has an observation deck at a height of 97 metres. The inexpensive tours feature a tour guide but don't depend on the guide speaking much English! €3.70.
- 3 National Library (Nacionalā Bibliotēka), Mūkusalas iela 3. An important part of the West Bank's cityscape, the National Library was built in 2008-13. It is perhaps the most remarkable part of the "New Riga" giving a more gentle feel to skyscrapers and other high-tech buildings that were recently constructed on the West Bank of the Daugava. The building was nicknamed the "Castle of Light" (Gaismas Pils), and the architect intended to mimic the towers of Vecriga, although casual tourists may rather see it as a cruise ship that has just arrived from the Baltic Sea and is anchored across the river from the Old Town.
- 4 Riga Aviation Museum (At Riga-Spilve International Airport). 09:00 - 18:00. Bored at the airport? Check out the Riga Aviation museum, which contains several rare aircraft. €5.
- 5 University of Latvia Botanical Garden (Botaniskais Darzs), Kandavas iela 2 (Tram 4 to Dzirciema iela, then walk east down Jurmalas Gatve towards the entrance), ☏ , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. Apr-Sep 09:00-19:00, other months 10:00-16:30, Butterfly House has shorter opening hours (check website). The Botanical Garden is quite large and featuring an impressively broad and well-cultivated collection of plant species. The long history of the Garden is reflected in its rich built heritage. There is a Butterfly House within the garden's grounds, where you can experience free-flying tropical butterflies. Apart from botanical interests, the garden is simply beautiful and great for a stroll. €3, Butterfly House €4.50 extra.
A very picturesque historical part of Pārdaugava, in 19th century it was a district for mansions and manors, some of which still remain (although bereft of any grounds), and some were replaced by slightly newer early 20th century residential architecture of wealthy middle and upper class. Many embassies were located there pre-WWII. To get here, take Tram 2, 4, or 5; bus 21, trolley bus 9.
- 6 Wooden architecture of Āgenskalns. Very nice part of Pārdaugava with old wooden buildings, which date back to the 18th-19th centuries and are still preserved in between Nometņu, Slokas, Eduarda Smiļģa and Talsu streets. This unusual place is the pearl of Pārdaugava’s wooden architecture, a visit to it will bring an unforgettable aesthetic pleasure. You may start with getting off at the stop “Smiļģa iela” tram #2. There are also nice wooden buildings on Kalnciema iela (starting with crossing with Slokas iela till the crossing with Sabiles iela).
- 7 Victory Monument (Uzvaras piemineklis) (Get off the tram at the second stop after the bridge over the Daugava). A splendid example of high Soviet art and the biggest occupation-era monument in Latvia. If you've never seen a Soviet monument before, you should really check this out.
- 8 Latvian Railway History Museum, Uzvaras bulvaris 2 - 4, ☏ . Tu-Su 10:00-17:00. Exhibits several collections of Soviet rolling stock.
- 9 Theatre Museum (Eduard Smilgis Museum of Theatre), Eduarda Smiļģa iela 37/39 (tram #2, stop Eduarda Smiļģa iela), ☏ . W-Su 11:00-18:00. Located in the eccentrically designed and furnished pre-war house of a former director of Riga Daile Theatre and one of the key figures in Latvian theatre of the 20th century. €0.70-3.00.
- 10 St. Martin's Church, Slokas iela 34. Lutheran church from 1850s. Its decorations are fairly plain, but the location among the trees is remarkable.
- 11 Baptist Church, Mārupes iela 14. A mix of cultures and styles. Built in 1913-16, this church had neither a tower nor a dome and resembled a simple residential building. The tower was added in 1936. Baptist services continued until 1961 and resumed shortly after Latvia re-gained its independence.
- 12 Methodist church, Slokas iela 6. A fairly bland building from 1930s. However, the very presence of a big methodist church in Riga is remarkable.
- 13 Church of St. Albert, Liepājas iela 38. Baroque edifice from early 20th century. The interior of the church was partly designed in 1950s despite the official atheist propaganda that was widely imposed in the Soviet Union.
There is a popular beach on Kipsala Island, just across the Vanšu Bridge from the city centre.
- 1 Āgenskalns Market (Āgenskalna tirgus), Nometņu iela 64 (Tram 2 or trolleybus 5 - Āgenskalna tirgus stop), ✉ email@example.com. Daily 07:30-18:00. This is a smaller counterpart to the Central Market, to be found the central square of Āgenskalns on the left bank of Daugava, which is a crossing of no less than 6 streets. An impressive building from 1911-23, remarkable as a red-brick manifestation of Jugendstil architecture in Riga. While the offerings are decisively not geared towards tourists, you may want to visit just to experience the historic low-rise neighbourhood.
- Ķīpsala Island Student Cafeteria (Ķīpsala Island). Several sets of home-like food are offered in a cozy atmosphere.
- Čili Pica. The Latvian pizza chain has three restaurants in Pardaugava.
- 4 Lido Spice, Lielirbes iela 29, ☏ , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. 10:00-22:00. The Rigan buffet restaurant chain also has a restaurant in the Spice shopping mall.
- 1 Ciemakukulis, Nometņu ielā 9. A cozy café with a truly delicious selection of baked goods. Free wifi.
- 1 Riga City Camping, Rietumu iela 2 (On Kipsala Island, 2.5km from the city centre), ☏ , , ✉ email@example.com. Open May 15 to September 15. Nice facilities. Per person €3; per tent site: €6; per camper site €7-10; car parking: €3..
- 2 Two Wheels, Baložu iela 12, ☏ , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. Classy hotel/hostel across the river from the old town. Dorm bed: €14.
- 3 Bellevue Park Hotel Riga, Slokas iela 1, ☏ .
- 4 Primo Hotel, Nometnu iela 62, ☏ , , fax: , ✉ email@example.com. Modern 3-star hotel, free parking, cable TV, only en suite rooms. Single €35/€45 (low season/high season); double/twin €40/€50 (low season/high season), family room €70 (up to 4 persons); breakfast €5 extra.
- 5 Radisson Blu Daugava Hotel, Kuģu iela 24. On the left bank of the Daugava, with views of the Old Town. €76.