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Riga is an amazing place for tourism, vacations as well as for business visits. The city often mentioned as Paris of the North is well known for its architectural and cultural values. Riga straddles the Daugava river, about 15 km ( 9 mi ) from its mouth in the south-eastern corner of the Gulf of Riga. Centuries-old German buildings are strewn throughout the historic quarter of Vecriga ( Old Riga ), and taking the lift up to the spire of St Peter s Church for an aerial view of the neighborhood is one of the highlights of a visit. Riga Castle dates from 1330, when it was built as the headquarters of the Livonian Order. Nowadays it is the home of Latvia s president. Today there are 28 museums, 7 professional theaters , 12 cinemas, 4 concert halls as well as the circus and zoo in Riga.