Is it Baltic or Balkan? I get asked this question almost every time I mention Latvia. Not many people have heard of the Baltic country or know where it is, but it is Latvia's centennial this year and there is much to explore in this undiscovered gem of northern Europe.
When I arrive in late August, as warm sunny days are transitioning into cool autumnal skies, I imagine I will find a sort of Scandi-Russia hybrid after centuries of rule by Germany, Sweden and Russia. There is some evidence of that in the sound of the language, the food and the neutral minimalism of modern Latvian design.