Līgatne Bunker, constructed 9 meters beneath the ground, was intended to serve as a shelter for Latvia’s Communist elite in case of a hypothetical nuclear war.
Displayed at the shelter are authentic exhibits which have survived there from Soviet times. The secrecy shrouding the bunker was so great that for 30 years, employees and clients of the adjacent rehabilitation center remained unaware of the underground structure underneath their feet.
The bunker was built during the Cold War when the Soviet Union maintained constant high alert for a Western attack, more specifically a nuclear assault from the United States. It is hard to imagine, though, how the elite of Soviet Latvia would have been rushed to the bunker in a few minutes, given that the distance from Riga to Ligatne is 75 kilometers. This makes one suspect that the bunker might have been used also in case a nuclear war launched by the Soviet Union. The bunker was supplied with everything necessary to survive severa months after a nuclear fallout.
On the excursion, you will see:
- Maps and situation plans showing what happens when all dams of hydroelectric power plants are destroyed during war;
- Autonomous power plant with diesel generators and a fuel storeroom;
- Air purification equipment with oxygen supplies;
- Water supply and sewerage facilities like those in submarines;
- Telecommunications centre complete hotline with the Kremlin in Moscow and autonomous communications with all the key services in Latvia;
- Unique map with the historical names of collective farms, or kolkhoz;
- Canteen - with a typical Soviet-era menu;
- Various Soviet memorabilia; items and accessories.
Dine at the bunker
Tourists can have a 1980s-style meal here, sitting at a table covered by wax-cloth and drinking from faceted vintage glasses. The menu features entries like the ‘Kolkhoz combo’ with soup, stewed fruit drink and rye bread.
Active and adventurous people who are not afraid to go on a secret mission for an adrenaline boost, can take part in the reality game “Object X” at the bunker. Participants play the roles of secret agents on a mission to save their homeland from a catastrophe.