Machinegun Hill and the Christmas Battle Museum are located less than 25 km from capital city Riga. During World War I, this was where the first Latvian national army was formed and dramatic battles took place, and you can still see trenches and battle models here. There is also a museum and observation point.
About 20 km away towards Jelgava you’ll arrive at Valgunde Monastery. Take the unique opportunity to hear the remarkable story of the monastery’s creation, see its residents going about their everyday business, and take a look at the beautiful places of worship and sacred icon collection. When visiting the monastery, women are strongly advised to wear a skirt or dress, and cover their head with a scarf.
You should definitely stop off at nearby Jelgava. Jelgava is a town with an ancient and thrilling history. It’s worth visiting both the impressive Jelgava Castle and the crypts of the Dukes of Courland, Biron and Kettler in the castle cellar, as well as the Jelgava History and Art Museum in the former Academia Petrina building. We also recommend taking a look at the restored bell tower of St. Trinity Church – the first stone church in Europe built for a Lutheran congregation. The tower holds displays of historical information on Latvia’s presidents, and you can also do a virtual walk-through of the destroyed church, try your hand at making a Zemgale folk costume, enjoy a delicious meal and see panoramic views of Jelgava from a height of 50m.