Sigulda day trip, legends route

After my satisfying lunch at Mr. Biskvits, I went back up to Raiņa Park, although this time, I walked along the west side and got to see some of the mad landscaping skills of Siguldans.

Tiny hill with water These kids have it good.

On the sidewalk, I noticed the mark of Sigulda again. It seems so adorable yet reminds me a bit of crossbones.

Crossed walking sticks again

During this hike, I saw another unfamiliar flower and many mushrooms sprouting from the moist earth.

Seems like a thistle Hiding under the leaves Rings of earthy color Water collection expert

The first sight I reached on the legends route is called Painter’s Hill or Paradise Hill. I am not sure which name I prefer, but both are appropriate for the gorgeous view of the Turaida Medieval Castle and the Gauja River, which you can admire from a hollowed oak trunk swing. I got too impatient when I was trying to get off the swing and stuck my feet in the ground. However, because the trunk is so heavy, it won: I fell forward out of the swing onto my hands and knees. Luckily, I only scraped up only one of my knees and used some water from my bottle to wipe it off.

Castle from afar Heavy swing

The next stop was Raven’s Ravine and Cave. It wasn’t as impressive as Gutman’s Cave, but this whole route could have been more enjoyable had the Sigulda Tourism Information Center bothered to put up signs explaining the legends of these locations.

More cave graffiti

The trail I tried to take to see Peter’s Cave was closed because of a landslide, so I decided to visit the Satsele Castle Mound first. Despite my best efforts, I found the overlook but not the castle mound itself. Maybe I didn’t know what I was looking for: people in the Baltics like to exaggerate a bit, like calling a 350m hill a mountain. So if they’re calling this a mound, who knows how small it would have looked to me?

There's a song in this somewhere. Different style of wooden steps

On the longer way to Peter’s Cave, I walked by a nice wooden swing standing in the middle of a field.

Serene swing

Peter’s Cave was yonic-looking, and it had the now-familiar cave graffiti I’d seen previously at Gutman’s Cave and Raven’s Cave.

Open wide Lots of graffiti on the side

It was time to head back to the city and catch the afternoon train to Riga. Along the way, I walked down a residential street and saw a small house, perhaps used as additional storage space in someone’s backyard.

It's a beautiful day.

Many statues dot the city, and one of them resembled a Muppet.

He should start talking anytime now.

By the train station, there’s a tower that’s used as an art gallery, and the train station itself looked nice against the sky.

Art gallery tower Nice-looking station

All in all, Sigulda was worth a detour from Riga. My feet were sore from hiking around for hours, but it was nice to get out of the big city and into some nature.

Written on July 26, 2016