Latvia has grown in popularity in recent years, in part thanks to Air Baltic's affordable flights that pass through Riga. Many people head to Latvia for its historic sites, beautiful countryside, and, of course, cheap drinks. It attracts a young crowd, many of whom come for the weekend or just a couple of days from Western Europe. Because of this trend, the country has many backpacker hostels that offer cheap places to stay with the basic level of comfort. The dorms can be loud, particularly if you choose one with many beds, but there are options with four or less beds as well. If you're hoping for some sleep, these are the better option.
If you're not a backpacker, the hostels are best avoided. There are many mid-range and luxury accommodation options throughout the country. In Riga, you'll benefit most by staying in the old town, which is accessible to everything and offers the most in the form of restaurants, sights, and entertainment.
Latvia is full of good deals for accommodation. It's a popular destination for budget travelers and backpackers, and the demand has led to a growth in budget accommodation. You will get the best deal in backpacker hostels, which offer dorms that range in size. While the cheapest beds will be in the most crowded rooms, these will also be the loudest and most uncomfortable. If you're on a tight budget, consider a compromise of a room with four or six beds. These less crowded rooms give you the opportunity to sleep, but are not dramatically more expensive than the crowded rooms.
If you're not interested in staying in a hostel, but are still on a tight budget, consider traveling during the shoulder season. Fall and spring can still be quite cool, and prices are dramatically less than the summer months. Your money will take you a lot farther if you're willing to accept the risky weather. Winter can be quite affordable as well, but some places close down and the weather is incredibly cold, so this may not be the best time to visit Latvia.
A Diversity of Options
You can find all types of accommodation in Latvia. In the beautiful countryside you can stay at guesthouses, or country houses. These are more affordable than hotels, and a much higher quality than hostels. They offer all kinds of services and amenities, anything from horseback riding to "pirts" saunas.
Backpacker hostels are a popular option for budget travelers in the cities. They can be crowded and loud, so scout out your options ahead of time. Most hostels and hotels are now equipped with wifi. It is often free, but do confirm this ahead of time if access to the internet is important to you.
Riga has no shortage of budget accommodation. A lot of places do close down during the winter months so check ahead if you're not visiting during the peak season. The most convenient place to stay in the city is in the old town. It has the highest concentration of attractions, restaurants and bars. This is also where you will find most of the city's hostels. Many hostels are designed for party goers, so if that is not your style dig a little deeper until you find a place that meets your needs. Hostels are convenient as almost all of them have a shared kitchen facility. There's a large market near the old town in Riga so it's fun to go purchase some fresh local food and then prepare your own home cooked meal. The market is large and sprawling and has everything from meat and seafood to desserts and pastries. It's worth a visit even if you aren't planning to buy anything as it's a great place to people watch and check out some of the local culture.
There is one camping facility near Riga. Riga City Camping is open during the summer months and is an interesting place to stay. Mid-range options are abundant as well, and many are located in the old town area. They are often boutique hotels that have a lot of character and charm. If you're looking for a splurge there are some nice high end chain hotels around town. Also consider the Grand Palace Hotel, Hotel Centra Riga, or Hotel Garden Palace, all of which are quite nice.
Liepaja also has a good range of hotel options for travelers. There is a small handful of cheap hostels that offer a fun and friendly atmosphere. There are also some nice and simple hotels that are great for families or budget conscious travelers that are looking for a little more peace and quiet than you might get in a hostel. One of the nicest and largest hotels in the city is Fontaine Royal Hotel. It has conference rooms and banquet halls that are decked out to meet all of your needs. There's also an on site restaurant and bar. If you're looking for a four or five star hotel there are a few to choose from. Some are more conveniently located than others but they all have nice amenities and state of the art furnishings. The diversity of accommodation in Liepaja means that there really is something for everybody, whatever it is you're looking for.