The Independence of Latvia was proclaimed on 18 November 1918 at the Latvian National Theatre. This day in Latvia is a public holiday — public institutions and the majority of private enterprises are closed, various events take place throughout the day.
18 November is the Independence Day of Latvia — even though there were no borders set, a group of dedicated nationalists proclaimed an independent Latvian state on this date in 1918. Several months after this courageous step had been made, military interventions still went on — the Russian Empire did not want to lose this important territory. Nevertheless, this day is still the most important national holiday for every Latvian.
On 18 November, various events take place across the country throughout the day. In Riga the celebration begins on the first half of the day with a parade and laying of flowers at the Freedom Monument with participation of the President of Latvia and other important government officials.
A parade of the National Armed Forces takes place in the afternoon at the 11th November Embankment. In the evening there are torchlight processions, and the celebration in Riga ends with magnificent fireworks over the River Daugava.
On 18 November public transport in Riga is free of charge!