Saldus is a city in Kurzeme, on the banks of the river Ciecere,
the center of Saldus district. It is located 119 km from Riga, but
only 7 km from the neighboring town of Brocēni. The territory of the
city borders with Saldus, Novadnieki and Zirņi parishes of its
district, as well as Ciecere parish of Brocēni district. Saldus was
first mentioned in written sources in the 13th century, but 1856 is
considered to be the city's founding year. City rights since 1917.
Saldus is the 16th largest city in Latvia in terms of population.
The railway line Riga-Liepāja runs along Saldus (Saldus station is located in Saldus parish). The main road A9 crosses the city territory, Saldus is the destination of the regional roads P108 and P109.
Saldus castle mound (Salden) was first mentioned in
the 1253 Course Sharing Agreement as a settlement in the "Land
between Skrunda and Zemgale". In the 14th century, near the Curonian
castle mound, the Livonian Order built Saldus Castle, which was
bequeathed to the patroness of the Order, St. Mary, and was called
"Our Beloved Lady's Castle" (German: die Burg unserer lieben Frau)
or Frauenburg. It was first mentioned in the list of castles of the
Order in 1411.
Frauenburg Castle, which over time developed into a larger settlement, which flourished during the reign of Duke Jacob of Courland (1642–1682). This was facilitated by the convenient location in the place where the road to the second capital of the duchy, Kuldiga, branched off from the Jelgava-Klaipeda postal road. During the Great Northern War, Saldus Castle and the city were destroyed, economic life was restored only after 1856. Saldus gained city rights in 1917 during the First World War, when it was under German occupation. During the Latvian War of Independence, Saldus was the first city to be liberated from the Bolsheviks on March 10, 1919 by the 1st Latvian Separate Battalion. At the end of the Second World War, the city was located in the Kurzeme fortress and fierce battles took place near it, but until the capitulation of Germany on May 8, 1945, Saldus remained in the occupied part of Latvia by the Wehrmacht.
castle mound is a 15 m high Curonian castle mound on the western
shore of Lake Saldus at the source of Kaļķupīte dating back to the
Early Iron Age. The castle mound was inhabited until the 12th
century. Its plateau was later agriculturally cultivated and the
evidence of antiquity has almost disappeared. There is a parking lot
by the castle mound. The castle mound offers a wide view of the city
below. There are many legends about Saldus castle mound, which
usually tell about the sweet life inside the hill. Saldus castle
mound is an archeological monument of national significance.
Fountain "Honey Drops" in Māris Čakla Square, created in 2008 (sculptor Kārlis Īle). The idea of the fountain is rooted in the poetic city of the poet Maris Čaklas in comparison with the "drop of honey in the bowl of Kurzeme". The central sculpture is designed as two honeycombs connected by a large drop of honey in the center. The upper lust symbolizes the sky, the lower lust - the earth. As an additional element of the fountain is decorated with six fine water jets. The fountain is bi-directional - six jets flow upwards, while 36 jets flow downwards.
Janis Rozentāls Saldus History and Art Museum is located in a house and workshop designed and built in 1900 by the old master of Latvian professional painting Janis Rozentāls. He has been here for two years. In front of the building is a monument to Janis Rozentāls, created in 1954 by the sculptor V. Alberga. There are four buildings in the museum complex, which include - the museum collection building, the art exhibition hall, the history exhibition hall and the administration. The museum was established in 1947 as a collection of the artist's original works collected by Marta Vēja. The museum displays original works of the early period of the works of the Latvian master master of painting. The main position of the museum includes a reflection of the painter's life and work. The museum traditionally presents the J. Rozentāls Prize to the artists of Saldus region and since 1999 - for the contribution to education and research - the prize of the local historian Edgars Dunsdorfs.
Saldus St. John's Evangelical Lutheran Church. Saldus parish is mentioned already in 1420, but Saldus church appears in writings in 1461. In 1530 a new wooden church was built. In 1614, the first stone church was built at the expense of Duke Wilhelm, which was completed in 1615. 100 years later, the church was in such poor condition that it was demolished. In 1737 the construction of a new stone church was completed. It was a white, simple, one-area masonry building built in the Romanesque style. From 1898 to 1900, after the architect Wilhelm Neimanis, a thorough reconstruction of the church took place, leaving only the tower and the walls of the altar part. A three-story church with two auxiliary rooms was built in place of the one-story church. During the Second World War, in the autumn of 1944, the church tower was blown up, which was restored only in 1982, and the cross of the final elements of the spire was replaced by a rooster made by the mighty Krivāns.
Saldus Roman Catholic Church was built in 2007 for donations collected in Latvia and abroad. There are two bells in the church tower, the largest bell is named after St. Peter and Paul and weighs 420 kg, but the smallest bell - St. Gerard's bell - weighs 130 kg.