Liepaja is the third largest city in Latvia. It is home for about 90 000 people. It is located on the southwest part of Latvia at the Baltic Sea coast and consists of a 1.5-6.5 km wide seashore dune bank and low lands. But from the other side it is enclosed by the Liepaja and Tosmare lakes. Liepaja is a "green city", because 35% of the common city area consists of green areas and nature reserves, which include parks, gardens, forests, waters and other values of nature.
Liepaja climate is temperate with small year temperature variations, heightened humidity and nebulosity. In winter period it is warmer in Liepaja, but in summers it is just a little bit colder than in other places in Latvia. And also strength of wind, which mostly comes from west, is greater than in Latvia at an average. Liepaja is called the city of winds for the very reason.
The origin of Liepaja is to be found in a small fishermen village named Livas ciems, which is already mentioned in 1253 in historical documents. After going through the dark ages, this community at the time of Courland Dukedom got the city rights. The city experienced its growth during the times of Russian Empire. Successfully going through the World War I, in 1919 for a short time Liepaja became the capital of Latvia. During the World War II Liepaja was heavily bombed, but still maintaining its own obstinate nature, which was obtained in soviet times. Today the city is in search for new and uncommon ways of development.
The Promenade had been a closed area in Soviet decades, now it is developing into an attractive place for a walk along the channel. A footbridge-shaped pedestrian path reveals a view to the port berths with ships, yachts and a fountain made in the shape of a wave cascading into the channel. Amber clock is made of 50 litres of amber that inhabitants of Liepaja have donated to the city.
Culture, entertainment, sport
Liepaja is proud of its oldest professional theatre, opera art, symphony orchestra, museums and galleries, and also other cultural and art values. Our Piano Star Festival has gained a world wide range. International appreciation also gained such rock festivals as "Liepajas Dzintars", "Mes Liepajai", "Beach Party" and others. Such events as Rally Kurzeme, Sea Festival and international flower festival have become a tradition.
Liepaja also has professional soccer, ice-hockey, basketball and other sport teams. Several individual sport athletes have achieved good results not only in Latvia but even in international sports (track-and-field athletics, gymnasts, swimmer, fighting athletes and others).