According to COUNTRYAAH, Latvia is a State of Baltic Europe (64,559 km²). Capital: Riga. Administrative division: districts (26). Population: 2,270,894 (2008 estimate). Language: Latvian (official), Lithuanian, Russian. Religion: non-religious / atheists 62.9%, Catholics 14.9%, Protestants 14.6%, Orthodox 7.6%. Monetary unit: lats, in the plural lati (100 santimi). Human Development Index: 0.863 (44th place). Borders: Baltic Sea (W and NW), Estonia (N), Lithuania (S), Belarus (SE) Russia (E). Member of: Council of Europe, EBRD, NATO, UN, OSCE, WTO and EU.
Latvia is a parliamentary republic, officially independent since September 6, 1991 from the Soviet Union, to which it was annexed on August 5, 1940. On July 7, 1993 the Democratic Constitution of 1922 returned to force. Parliament ( Saeima), made up of 100 members elected by universal suffrage with a proportional system for three years, elects the head of state, who in turn remains in office for three years and appoints the prime minister. The judicial system refers to the Supreme Court, whose members are ratified by Parliament. In 1999 the death penalty was abolished. The literacy rate of the adult population is 99.8% and education, divided into primary and secondary, is compulsory for nine years, from 6 to 15 years of age. Higher education is given in the country’s four universities and in numerous institutes and academies. The official language of instruction is Latvian, but linguistic minorities are also protected.
The territory is flat in the center, in the fertile plain of Riga-Jelgava, undulating and hilly to the W and NE, where modest moraine reliefs rise. The highest point in the country is the summit of Mount Gaizina Kalns (311 m), while almost half of the territory is below sea level. The coast, which in the eastern part forms the great Gulf of Riga, has a total extension of 531 km. The most important river is the Western Dvina (Daugava), which flows into the Baltic Sea, as well as all other rivers, the largest of which are the Gauja, the Lielupe and the Venta. Among the many natural and artificial basins in the country, over 1000, the largest is the Lubanas lake. The climate is rainy and temperate, with abundant snowfall in winter and frequent rainfall in summer. The western region benefits most from marine influences, while in the eastern part the climate already has continental characteristics.
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Temperatures, precipitation, sunshine in Riga (Latvia)
|Daytime temperature||-3 ° C||-2 ° C||2 ° C||10 ° C||16 ° C||20 ° C||22 ° C||21 ° C||17 ° C||10 ° C||4 ° C||-1 ° C|
|Night temperature||-9 ° C||-8 ° C||-6 ° C||1 ° C||5 ° C||9 ° C||12 ° C||11 ° C||8 ° C||4 ° C||-1 ° C||-5 ° C|
|Water temperature||0 ° C||0 ° C||0 ° C||3 ° C||9 ° C||16 ° C||20 ° C||19 ° C||16 ° C||11 ° C||7 ° C||4 ° C|
|Precipitation in mm||63||33||24||30||39||43||59||78||78||75||59||60|
|Hours of sunshine||1||2||4||6||9||10||9||7||5||3||1||1|
The annual average temperature in Riga is 5.7 ° C. For comparison: Munich reaches an average of 8.6 ° C, in Berlin it is 9.6 ° C. The warmest month is July (16.8 ° C), coldest month of January with mean values of -5.8 ° C. The maximum water temperature in Riga is 20 ° C. Pleasant bathing is possible from temperatures of around 21 ° C. The months of July and August have a water temperature of at least 17 ° C. Bathing is then possible to a limited extent.
The annual precipitation is 641 mm on 127 days with precipitation. For comparison: In Munich, 967 mm, in Berlin 570 mm, precipitation is measured annually. There is no rainy season, i.e. months with more than 175 mm of precipitation. In the months of January, February, March, April, October, November and December snowfall is possible.
As our climate table shows, June is the sunniest month with an average of 9.6 hours of sunshine per day. On average over the year, the sun shines 4.8 hours per day. For comparison: In Munich and Berlin, the sun shines an average of 4.7 hours per day throughout the year.