Ermak Travel Guide

 

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Gauja National Park

Gauja National Park

Gauja National Park is a natural reserve in Cēsis region in Latvia. This nature reserve derives its name from a valley of a Gauja river. Covering an area of 917 km² it is largest and oldest national park in the country found in September of 1973.

 

 

 

Location: Cēsis    Map

Area: 917 km² (92000 ha)

 

 

 

 

The banks of the river are largely made up from sandstone cliffs that were formed during Devonian period. In some areas they reach a height of 90 meters. Despite temptation to jump from these geological formations it is not advisable to carry out this practice due to low water level in some places. Nicknamed a "Livonian Switzerland" it attracts thousands of tourists every year. Some of the caves in the sandstone cliffs preserve graffiti of hikers who visited these places in the 19th century. Most of the land area of the Gauja National Park are covered by pine and spruce forests as well as 900 other plant species. Additionally there are 48 species of mammals and 149 species of birds. Reserve has several lakes within its borders, but its largest lake is a Lake Ungurs.

One of the most notable sights in the ancient valleys of Gauja National Park is a medieval Āraišu Lake Castle as well as Soviet secret underground bunker of Ligatne that was constructed to protect population in case of a nuclear war between Soviet Union and United States.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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