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Social Life In Latvia

Social Life in Latvia

Language in Latvia

Latvian or Lettish is the official language, but English is also understood in Riga and other tourist locations. Russian and German are also spoken, and at times Russian may appear to be predominant. If you intend to live in a rural area, you should try to learn a little Latvian at least as it will definitely help you with establishing a social life in Latvia. The great thing is that children seem able to absorb languages easily, and unless your Latvian is very good, they will soon be translating for you. Many expats send their children to an international school in Riga.

Social Life in Latvia

A small yet beautiful country, Latvia has powerful neighbours and their culture has been a way of retaining their national identity. They are particularly strong on folk music – they say there is a different song for every Latvian. Every four years there is a great national folk festival of songs and dances. Only 60% of the population are ethnic Latvians with over a quarter being of Russian origin.

The countryside has a coast, a national park (Little Switzerland) as well as castles, monuments and craft workshops where weaving and pottery are carried on. Theatre is also very popular, as are sports, especially hockey, basketball and bobsleigh. In addition, you will find many opportunities to participate in sports clubs and halls.

National Holidays

  • May 4 Declaration of Independence Latvia
  • June 23 Midsummer Eve
  • June 24 St John’s Day
  • November 18 Independence Day Latvia
  • December 25 Christmas
  • Dec. 26 Second Day of Christmas
  • December 31 New Year’s Eve

Food, Dining, & Drinks in Latvia

Culinary Influences

Latvian cuisine is based on animal products. Meats, dairy, eggs, and animal fats are commonly used and featured in most dishes. Additionally, the people historically integrated potatoes, wheat, and other heavy vegetables.

After falling under Polish and German control pork has been more significantly integrated into the Latvian diet. Today, little has changed in Latvian cuisine other than a few new ingredients and ingredient combinations. As communication and transportation channels have improved, new ethnic foods and restaurants have been introduce, but not yet in significant numbers.

Staple Foods

Beans: considere a staple and found in many dishes, especially traditional peasant dishes
Peas: like beans, not found in every dish, but a very common ingredient
Rupjmaize: a dark bread made from rye is commonly serve with meals in Latvia

Regional Variations & Specialties

Grey Peas with Onions & Bacon: Latvia’s national dish is fairly self-explanatory

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Post expires at 10:51am on Sunday November 11th, 2018

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