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Latvia Attractions | Freedom Monument

In central Riga, the Freedom Monument holds a very momentous site for Latvians. The Freedom Monument is a sacred place in the hearts and minds of every Latvian. This strong symbol of the nation was built in 1935 with the help of citizen's donations. The monument was the work of an outstanding Latvian sculptor Karlis Zale.

Latvia’s history has a special place for the monument. In the late 80s - early 90s the monument became a spiritual centre of the nation, a symbol of people's desire for independence. Riga's residents gather on the square round the monument on state holidays and commemoration days. Military parades are held there.

The monument is am image of Liberty holding three stars in stretched hands crowns the monument and symbolizes unity of the country. The threes stars represent the three historic regions of Latvia: Kurzeme, Latgale and Vidzeme. The monument is reminiscent of the famous Statue of Liberty in New York, though much smaller at 42m (138ft), the statue ranks among the most distinguished monuments in Europe. The monument has survived four decades of the Soviet rule. A popular local joke during the Communist era was that the monument was actually a travel agent, since laying flowers at it guaranteed a one-way ticket to Siberia. Today, the monument, the tallest of its kind in Europe, is back to its best after a major renovation. The monument still retains its meaning, as well as doubling up as a favorite meeting point for the city's youth.

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