‘This is the biggest thing that all Latvians wait for’: Summer solstice festivities begin in Latvia

Midsummer, or the summer solstice, is a day of great celebration in many countries throughout the globe. For many people in northern Europe – in the Scandinavian countries, and the Baltics – midsummer is one of the most beloved holidays. The World’s Daniel Ofman reports from Riga, the Latvian capital, about how people there are celebrating the longest day of the year.

Latvian basketball fans are rooting for ‘unicorn’ Porziņģis in the NBA finals


Baltic ‘beet down’: Latvia and Lithuania clash over cold pink soup


John Malkovich directs epic play ‘Leopoldstadt’ in Latvia

Ukrainian families spend 10 days with the Children's Hospital program in Riga, Latvia.

‘I’m feeling free’: Families from Ukraine find respite from war in Latvia

In eastern Latvia, the closer you get to the Russian border, the more monuments to fallen Soviet soldiers you’ll find.

As war rages on in Ukraine, some ethnic Russians in Latvia say they feel marginalized


Ethnic Russians have been living in Latvia for decades. But with public opinion turning sharply against Russia since the war in Ukraine began, some say they are increasingly worried about their place in Latvian society.

Cars line up to cross from Latvia into Russia

Desperate Ukrainians crossing into Latvia while Russians are blocked


Latvia, like the rest of European Union countries, has closed its border to virtually all Russians — even those fleeing conscription into the army. These days, it’s desperate Ukrainians who are crossing into Latvia from Russia, most notably young men fearing they might be drafted, too.

A woman walks past painted letter Z's, which has become a symbol of the Russian military, on bridge piers in St. Petersburg, Russia, Friday, April 15, 2022. 

No Z allowed: Some European countries move to ban the symbol used to promote Russia’s war in Ukraine


The letter Z has been used to glorify Russia’s war in Ukraine. Now, countries like Lithuania and Latvia are moving to ban the letter as one step toward stemming Russia’s pro-war propaganda. 

Kalman Aron began sketching when he was 3 years old. He's now 93, and says if he didn't still paint and draw every day he would "die of boredom."

For over 90 years, this Holocaust survivor’s art has kept him alive


At 93, Kalman Aron still paints everyday in his apartment in Beverly Hills. If he didn’t paint, he says he would “die of boredom.”

Where are you traveling in 2014? How about one of these?

Lifestyle & Belief

As I looked at the list of places to travel in 2014, I was inspired to make a visualization presenting some fun city choices.