Comprising several historic fishing villages overlooking the Gulf of Riga, Saulkrasti is a lively seaside destination in Latvia. It’s home to a stunning stretch of sand and the country’s only museum dedicated to bicycles and hosts the annual Saulkrasti Jazz Festival.
Things to do in Saulkrasti
Stretching along the length of Saulkrasti is a golden sweep of sand where you can swim and sunbathe in the warmer months. There’s a bar on the beach selling drinks and snacks, as well as a children’s playground. Away from the sand, you can stretch your legs along one of the walking trails that wind through the surrounding forest before watching the sunset over the Gulf of Riga.
At the southern end of Saulkrasti Beach is the White Dune, which rises 18 metres above the mouth of the Inčupe River and was once used by local fishermen to find their way home. It can be accessed along the four-kilometre-long Sunset Trail that leads from the centre of Saulkrasti and takes in linden trees believed to be planted by Russian Empress Catherine II.
Don’t miss a visit to the Saulkrasti Bicycle Museum, which explores the history of bicycle development in Latvia and beyond. In addition to an early “high wheel” and a 19th-century Simplex bicycle, the impressive collection includes an English “Coventry” model and a “Safety” produced at Latvia’s first bicycle factory. Also of note is a bicycle designed by aviation engineer Kārlis Irbītis using materials intended for the construction of planes.
Getting around Saulkrasti
Saulkrasti is just under an hour’s drive from the centre of Riga and a little over an hour from Riga International Airport, which has flights to destinations across Europe and the Middle East. Regular trains connect from Riga to the Saulkrasti railway station and buses travel throughout the town.