hidden europe

Exploring cultures and communities – the slow way

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Jurmala
Letter from Europe

Jurmala, a victim of circumstance

  • 6 Oct 2015
Imagine a gorgeous sweep of white quartz sand backed by low dunes and pine forest. Add in several mineral water springs of therapeutic value and an endless supply of curative mud - and there you have Jurmala's prime assets. The Latvian coastal ...
Riga
Magazine article

The art of concealment: Riga
  

The Latvian capital has long been shaped by outside influences. Every new master required the reinvention of the country's identity: what was acceptable was brought into the open and what could not be denied had to be conealed. Guest contributor ...
Cape Kolka
Magazine article

Livonian culture in Latvia: Mazirbe
  

Guest author Toby Screech travels to the heartland of the Livonian minority in Latvia to visit the their annual cultural festival. Not as grand as the main Latvian event in Riga, it is an altogether more intimate affair. And it reveals that the ...
hidden europe note

Rail update: Russia, Ukraine and Belarus

  • 4 May 2011
New rail timetables for the former Soviet Union come into effect later this month. There remains some uncertainty about some services, but for travellers heading east, here are a few thoughts on what to expect: the return of the Berlin to ...
Magazine article

The exotic Baltic
  

The best chicken soup this side of the Volga? Look to a Kazakh restaurant in Vilnius! The Baltic States are not just meat and potato country. You'll find exotic restaurants aplenty from Uzbek to Armenian, Georgian to ...
Magazine article

A town united: Valga / Valka
  

The Estonian half of the town is called Valga and the Latvian side Valka. During the days of the Soviet Union, Moscow imposed a civic unity on the dual community. Now, with the extension of the Schengen area to include the Baltic States, that unity ...
Magazine article

Latvia's Liv minority
  

A remote coastal area of northern Latvia is at the heart of a modest revival of Liv culture. The Liv community of Latvia have their own language and way of life and are one the Baltic region's most distinctive cultural ...
Magazine article

Latvia: song is power - dance is power
  

Guest author Toby Screech was in Riga in Latvia last summer and chanced upon a remarkable cultural event. In the Baltic region, song and dance festivals are an important medium for asserting national identity. Toby reports for hidden europe on the ...