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Explorer La Lettonie

How do you celebrate summer solstice?

22.06.2020

Dear friends, it’s Midsummer, which means everyone in Latvia is in a holiday mood and celebrating summer solstice on June 23rd and 24th – “Jāņi day” and “Līgo day”! In Latvia it’s the most magical festival time, when everyone sings, dances, makes bonfires and is merry until sunrise.

So how do you celebrate “Jāņi” exactly?

 

First of all, with family and friends somewhere in the nature. You make bouquets and wreaths out of herbs, oak leaves and summer flowers. You can feel the spirit of the holiday when cars all over cities are decorated with birch, oak, and rowan branches. Everyone’s so joyous!

Second comes holiday food. Cheese with caraway seeds, slices of various meat and beer are a must for every table. People light bonfires, jump over them and celebrate until the sunrise.

And don’t forget about special rituals. Romantic couples leave their friends to look for the “flower of the fern”, which is alleged to bloom only in the night of “Jāņi”.

This year, everyone who’s staying in Riga, is invited to enjoy the holiday in Riga’s gardens and parks, where specical evens will take place, of course, with all the necessary Covid-19 precautions. You can visit exhibitions, specially equipped food markets, as well as listen to live concerts online. No matter what, “Jāņi” holidays are always ON!

 

Happy summer solstice, everyone!

 

All photos are the property of LIAA