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Araisi Archaeological Museum Park
Araisi Lake Castle is the only reconstruction of a 9th-10th century fortified settlement. The Museum Park excels with unique archaeological findings, placement of reconstructed objects on their original site, and the well-preserved cultural and historical landscape of Vidzeme in contrast to the contemporary urban environment.
Araisi Archaeological Museum Park consists of an authentic replica of a 9th-10th century fortified dwelling site of the Latgallians – the wooden lake castle, the 14th-17th century medieval castle ruins, as well as reconstructions of Stone and Bronze Age dwelling houses in the area of 12 hectares on the shores of Lake Araisi near Cesis.
Araisi Lake Castle had been a permanent settlement built on a small, flooding island for protection. The lake castle was built by ancient Latgallians who arrived in the territory in the 9th-10th century.
Thanks to the excellent degree of preservation of the culture monument and the broad archaeological excavations, the lake castle has been reconstructed. In some of the reconstructed buildings there are now workshops of a 9th century jewelry maker, an exhibition of beekeeper’s tools and a dwelling room interior.
Medieval castle ruins
Araisi stone castle was built during the times of the Livonian Order and was inhabited between the 14th and 17th centuries. The remaining parts of the building and the artifacts found in the archaeological excavations characterize the inhabitants of the castle, their occupation and ethnic composition. The jewelry and farming tools found in the excavations suggest that a significant part of the population of the castle were local residents.
In addition to the sites of the open-air museum, it is possible to book an educational guided tour telling about the daily lives of the lake castle inhabitants. There are also educational museum programs and a special offer for newlyweds.