About Riga RIGA is the undisputed Baltic metropolis, a major port and industrial centre of nearly a million people.The city was founded by Albert von Buxhoeveden,a German canon who arrived in 1201 with twenty shiploads of crusaders to convert the Latvian tribes to Christianity. The main Hanseatic outpost in the region, Riga was run by German nobles and merchants even when wider political control passed to other powers,starting with the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth in the late sixteenth century.
After a subsequent period of Swedish rule Riga became part of the Russian Empire in 1710 and during the second half of the nineteenth century it developed into a major manufacturing centre.
Riga was badly damaged during World War I, but the city made a comeback during the first Latvian independence and remained a major centre after the country was swallowed up by the Soviet Union in 1940.
Under the Soviets, the influx of Russian immigrants reduced the Latvians to a minority in their own capital with thirty percent of the city's population is now Russian, and a further sixteen percent made up of other non-Latvian nationalities.These days Riga has a boom-town feel with a small but conspicuous section of the population making big bucks from the get-rich-quick opportunities thrown up by the switch to full-blown market economics. Information by Rough Guides
Climate in Riga is influenced by its proximity to the sea;therefore it is moderately warm and humid. Summers are comparatively cool and cloudy (average temperature in July +16.9 C;average precipitation (rainfall) 85 mm). Winters are comparatively warm with frequent thaws(average temperature in January 4,7 C, thaw days are about 10 days a month). Snow cover forms in the middle of December and remain through the middle of March. About 40% of the days in a year are cloudy (overcast), average precipitation 700-720 mm a year.
Riga is located along the Baltic Sea at the southern coast of the Gulf of Riga,on the Rigava coastal plain.The historical core of Riga is situated on the right bank of the Daugava River,about 10 kilometers from where the Daugava flows into the Gulf of Riga.The natural terrain of this area is a flat and sandy plain,about 1 to 10 meters above the sea level.