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Geography, Weather, & Wildlife of Latvia

Geography

Latvian Geography - Bauska Castle
Bauska Castle

Latvia is a "Baltic State," which is located in northern Europe on the Baltic Sea. Latvia borders Lithuania (south), Belarus (southeast), Russia (east), and Estonia (north).

Geographically, Latvia is fairly uniform as it stands just above sea level on the Baltic Sea. Some parts of the country are low-lying as there are swampy areas and other parts are slightly elevated, but most of the region is covered with rivers and has access to the Baltic Sea, making the region fairly accessible. Climatic conditions have a greater role in living conditions than does geography.

Weather

Latvian Geography - Baltic Sea
Baltic Sea

Latvia's seasons are fairly distinct, although springs and falls (autumns) can be short and Riga's location on the Baltic Sea tends to minimize temperature extremes. Winters (December-February) can be cold with very short days, but inland can be much colder. On the coast and in Riga, winter temperatures average just below freezing at 28-30˚ F (-2˚ C), but many days get above freezing.

The spring and fall (autumn) can be much warmer, based on the Baltic Sea temperature and weather patterns. While summers have long days with average highs in Riga generally reaching about 72˚ F (22˚ C) during these months, but the Baltic Sea breezes can make some days very cold.

Wildlife

Latvian Wildlife - Wild boar
Wild boar

Latvia is home to many small woodland mammals like foxes, rabbits, and squirrels, while having a much smaller population of large mammals like deer and elk. They also have few sea life species inland, although the Baltic Sea is home to many fish, including herring among others.

There are a number of bird species in Latvia including those that migrate through the country including woodpeckers and finches, the water lovers like storks, and the game birds such as quail and grouse.

This page was last updated: March, 2013