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Great Ellīte (Little Hell)

After the collapse of the Sietiņiezis arch, the Great Ellīte arcade has become the only natural sandstone formation of its kind in Latvia. The cave together with the spring is a significant sacred site, very popular since ancient times. The Little Hell could be 6.5 - 7 thousand years old. The cliff continues to be quite distinctive – at the entrance to the cave there are protuberances, niches and hollows, an arcade unique in Latvia.

  • Great Ellīte
  • Photo: Kristīne Timermane - Malēja
  • Great Ellīte arches
  • Photo: Kristīne Timermane - Malēja
  • Great Ellīte
  • Photo: Kristīne Timermane - Malēja
  • Great Ellīte
  • Photo: Kristīne Timermane - Malēja

Many legends and tales about Liepa’s Great Ellīte (Little Hell) have survived. One story goes that a devil had hidden in Great Little Hell, and no prayers by priests were able to drive him out – he frightened the locals and did all sorts of disturbing things. Finally a priest arrived, who had never sinned before –the devil then tried to flee across the River Gauja to Sietiņiezis. The Gauja blocked the devil’s path, so he gathered up stones like turnips in his hat and dumped them into the depths of the river. A severe thunderstorm ensued, and the Thunder God struck the devil, who managed to “creep across the bottom of the Gauja to Sietīns”.

 
57.384026, 25.427814
  • Address: 
    Priekuļi district, Liepa parish , Liepa, LV-4128
Last updated: 09.05.2014