This was not the first time when we decided to greet the arrival year outside our sweet sweet home in the Resort Town. However for the very first time we choose to spend the last night of the year in the foreign country. So, why we picked the little town instead of the capital city? And why we chose to stay in Hotel Cesis instead of luxury Hotel in Riga?
Our comprehensive answers to these questions are written below. So, get ready!
Our unforgettable experience and New Year’s Eve in Cesis (Latvia)
For a couple of days we were thinking about what special we could do on the last day of 2017. After we realized that the best way to greet the 2018 for us would be a short trip we started looking for a lovely town in the neighbor countries.
Why we didn’t consider celebrating the NYE in one of the capital cities? There are some reasons for that: firstly, wild parties and crowds of people aren’t our beloved ones; secondly, we’re totally the nature lovers and thirdly, we prefer to discover less popular places than the majority of foreign travelers are used to visit during their trip.
All of these reasons encouraged us to choose one of the dozen small towns in the adjacent countries. So, we picked Cesis. It’s a small Latvian town situated in Gauja National Park. Thus, nature is really beautiful there. What is more, the Old Town of Cesis is absolutely amazing even though the town is very small.
Where we stayed? For the last weekend of the year we stayed in Hotel Cesis. It isn’t one of those huge modern hotels that are usually lined up in the main streets of the cities but it definitely has the charm. Its architectural and interior details remind us the classic hotel’s style of the late XX century. Also, during the stay this hotel surprised us more than twice but about that you’re welcome to read in Hotel Cesis Review (it will be published soon).
What was so unforgettable there? Nature and architecture! That would be a very first idea if we would talk about Cesis surroundings. As we stayed in the hotel which is situated in an amazing place we surprisingly recognized that there are even more wonderful places that are worth a visit. We found and visited at least 7 spectacular places nearby the Hotel Cesis.
Moreover, we were pleasantly surprised during the last night of the year. Our hotel was located so close to the one of the main Christmas tree in the town that we almost see it through the window. Firstly, we were quite amazed because we had never seen the Christmas tree in the middle of a huge crossroad before. However, at the New Year’s night we realized the wonderful New Years traditions that are alive among the locals.
As New Year was coming soon we went outside to find the best place for a fireworks show. So, from our experience in homeland we knew that the most spectacular view opens up somewhere next to the Christmas tree. However, during our day wondering through the town we recognized that the town had two squares with the Christmas trees.
After we got outside at once we saw festival lights, peaceful people and completely different crossroad that we used to see. The town had come to life. Locals were really friendly and seemed naturally happy. So, we found the best place for firework show unexpectedly easily.
No drunk people, no dangerous pyrotechnics, no fights or other common attributes of New Year’s Eve. The square was full of families with Bengal lights and the voices of joyful greetings for the upcoming 2018. The atmosphere was so positive and lovely that we still couldn’t forget it. Of course, the firework show was impressive too.
Our Choices for Dinner in Cesis
Before the trip we didn’t spend a lot of time for thorough travel planning. Usually we haven’t had any problems by choosing a nice place for a dinner during the trip. However, this time everything was a bit different. The majority of restaurants and cafes in the town center were closed.
So we thought that we have two options: eat in the hotel Restaurant or find a supermarket. Only the unexpected randomness helped us and gave us a chance to know that one more café called Café Popular is still open. So, during our stay in Cesis we eat in two lovely places and both of them were situated really near to our room.
Our experience in Hotel Cesis Restaurant
Food is extremely important for happy traveling. That’s the undeniable truth that we had recognized not so long ago. Hence, tasty dinner was the first thing that we were looking for after we successfully reached the hotel. The hotel’s restaurant surely was the most alluring option because it was situated in the same building as our hotel.
So, for the first dinner in Cesis we went the easiest way and chose nice restaurant in the hotel. And then all the fun had begun…
As we’re vegetarians we used to face with the lack of choices in the café’s or restaurant’s menu. Also, the same happened there. In the menu we found just one vegetarian friendly suggestion for main dishes called grilled vegetables. That sounds really good for us so we ordered it. Quite soon food was served on the table.
To our great surprise, we had seen nothing similar to grilled vegetables. On our table were two small plates full of steamed vegetables. Something similar we had seen on the menu as a side dish, thus the portion of food was very small. Despite that the food was delicious.
For the dessert we order two pieces of cake and two cups of tea. It was served in a very nice way but the cake itself was a bit too fatty for us. We think that there was way too much of the mascarpone cream but that is just our opinion.
So, our first dinner experience in Cesis was quite interesting. In a nutshell, food was okay but very soon we had to think about second dinner in a row. We were hungry almost at the same time when we left the restaurant. Thus, a small misunderstanding with the restaurant staff changed our evening plan and forced us to keep looking for a new place to eat.
However, we learned the lesson perfectly. Now we always keep in mind that better double ask if you have been understood correctly than be hungry in a couple of minutes.
During our stay we visited the restaurant for a four times. Of course, two of the visits were because of having breakfast there. Summing up, more accurate information about food and prices we write in the second article called Hotel Cesis Review.
Our Experience in Café Popular
Absolutely accidentally we found this hidden café in the cellar of the hotel building. We were coming back from the town center with some snacks in our pockets. We couldn’t find any lovely place to eat so we visited a small shop next to the nearest Christmas tree. Accidentally we saw people coming out of the decorated entrance to the basement.
It was impossible to see the café while standing next to the main hotel’s entrance. Due to the café’s location and darkness of winter evening the café was well hidden. We are not sure if there is one more entrance from the hotel inside because we were there twice and we all the time used outside entrance.
When we visited it for having the second dinner in about two hours we realized that café was almost full. We were lucky that we found a table. The main and undoubtedly the most popular dish was pizza. And we were lucky once again! They had even three different options for vegetarians.
During our stay in Cesis we had an opportunity to taste each of these three pizzas. All of them were quite good but really tasty was only one. It’s a pity that we don’t remember how it was called correctly but we know that the main ingredient was cheese. That pizza consists of three or four different spices of cheese and was the most delicious for us.
The prices were affordable there. One vegetarian pizza cost around 5-6 euros. As we recognize there was some unexpected rules. Café Popular guests should have ordered the pizza by coming to the waiters’ desk and should have paid before the food was served. That rules didn’t bother us at all. When we paid the waiter got us the badges with our pizzas names so we could calmly wait for food.
While waiting the food we were looking around. The café Popular was full of people thus there was not the most peaceful environment. Red bricks looked like the main details of café interior. What is more, even the café is situated in the basement the windows were installed in the middle wall between two café halls. This little detail made that interior much cozier.
In a nutshell, we were glad we found that hidden café. If helped us to taste pizza in Cesis and saved some money. Also, we hope that our experience will help you to enjoy the trip in Cesis.