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The Fascinating Wildlife of Latvia: A Journey Through the Woods, Marshes, and Coast

The Lynx of the Baltic Forests

Latvia, a Baltic country with diverse landscapes, is home to rich and varied wildlife. From majestic elk to stealthy lynx, iconic storks, and playful seals, Latvian nature offers a multitude of observations for animal lovers.


1. FORESTS AND MARSHES: THE REALM OF LARGE MAMMALS


Covering over 40% of the territory, Latvian forests provide an ideal habitat for many animals. The elk, the largest terrestrial mammal in the country, is often found in wetlands and clearings. The more discreet red deer prefers the depths of the woods. The lynx, a formidable predator, is present in the forests of the eastern part of the country.


Several options are available to visitors to observe these wild animals in their natural habitat:


Gauja National Park: Located near Riga, this park is one of the oldest and largest in Latvia. It is home to a wide variety of animals, including elk, deer, lynx, and wolves. Hiking trails and observation towers allow visitors to discover the wildlife in peace.


Ķemeri Nature Park: This park is famous for its marshes, which host unique flora and fauna. Boat excursions and hiking trails offer opportunities to observe rare birds, beavers, and otters.


Teici Nature Reserve: This reserve is the perfect place to observe white-tailed eagles, majestic eagles that nest in trees overlooking rivers.

Along the Coast: Seals and Seabirds

The Latvian coast, bordered by the Baltic Sea, provides a habitat for gray seals and harbor seals. These animals can be observed on wild beaches or during boat excursions.



la magnifique forêt de Gauja en Lettonie

Observation Spots :


Liepāja Beach: This beach is one of the best places to observe seals in Latvia. Boat excursions are also available.


Pape Nature Park: This natural park in Latvia is located in Courland in the municipalities of Nīca and Rucava. 278 different bird species have been identified in the park. The area is situated on the migration routes of birds and bats of the Western Palearctic. In spring and autumn, thousands of individuals can be observed, making it a prime bird-watching site.


Large ungulates such as wild horses, Heck cattle, and European bison have been reintroduced into the park. Other herbivores present and protected in the park include roe deer, red deer, elk, and wild boar.


The park is home to many other mammal species, including rare predators like lynx and beavers.


Zoos and Animal Parks: An Alternative for Families


For a more educational and family-friendly experience, several zoos and animal parks host animals from Latvia and beyond.


Places to Visit:


Riga Zoo: The largest zoo in Latvia, with over 400 animal species.


Līgatne Nature Park: This park houses wild animals in semi-liberty, such as lynx, wolves, and bears.


Mini Zoo in Rīgas Mežaparks: A miniature zoo ideal for children, with farm animals and exotic animals.


In conclusion, Latvia is an ideal destination for nature and animal lovers. Whether in forests, marshes, along the coast, or in zoos, a multitude of observations and unforgettable encounters await you.

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