Liepāja Old Town in Latvia

Old Liepāja (Southern Liepāja)

Southern Liepāja hosts the historic town center Old Liepāja. Large churches of various denominations there tower above old apartment buildings. Baroque Holy Trinity Lutheran Cathedral (1758) is famous for having a 7000 pipe mechanical organ, while Gothic Revival St. Annes (1893) has a great baroque altair (unfortunately, the churches are usually closed).

Holy Trinity Lutheran Cathedral in Liepāja
Holy Trinity Lutheran Cathedral. ©Augustinas Žemaitis.

The area also has multiple pedestrianised streets and old marketplaces. Typical buildings there are two floored wooden residentials and impressive art nouveau edifices. Some of the advertised local sights are the Peter I house (where the Russian czar once stayed) and Latvian music avenue of fame – however these are unlikely to amuse non-locals.

Liepāja gymnasium, one of the industrial era buildings
Liepāja gymnasium, one of the industrial era buildings. ©Augustinas Žemaitis.

West side of southern Liepāja is framed by a massive beach and an adjoining park. The nearby streets (Dzintaru, Liepu, Vites) are lined by lovely villas of pre-WW1 era German rich (many of them wooden and; unfortunately but atmospherically, a large number seemingly abandoned). One such villa has been transformed into Liepāja museum which houses old things and historical data.

Liepāja German villa that was turned in city museum
Liepāja German villa that was turned in city museum. ©Augustinas Žemaitis.

To the south of these historic areas lies a sprawl of single family homes and beyond that a small Soviet district. The city ends with remains of 19th century fortifications that once protected its southern flank.

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