The Old Town of Kuldīga becomes a UNESCO World Heritage Site

The Old Town of Kuldīga becomes a UNESCO World Heritage Site

The Old Town of Kuldīga has been included in the UNESCO World Heritage List, thus acknowledging and appreciating the unique value of the Old Town of Kuldīga on a global scale, according to a decision taken by the Member States at the 45th session of the World Heritage Committee, which is being held in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, from 10 to 25 September.

The road to UNESCO for Kuldīga took more than 20 years and has been a major process with high added value, creating a heritage administration system, researching and cleaning up heritage sites, educating the public on heritage protection issues and improving building regulations. The Kuldīga Restoration Centre and the support programme for the protection of historic buildings were also created during this period - all these achievements paved the way for the inclusion of the Old Town of Kuldīga on the World Heritage List.

For 20 years, Kuldīga Municipality has been striving to prepare the ground for the Old Town's inscription on the UNESCO World Heritage List.

Kuldīga is the only city in the world with fully authentic traditional Baltic architecture, blending Latvian and German traditions. The most well-preserved city structure dating from the 13th to the 18th centuries, the urban environment and the scenic landscape of the river valley bear witness to the traditional settlements of the region. Kuldīga reveals information about the towns, industries, crafts, traditions and people of the Duchy.

The preservation and protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage remains one of UNESCO's most prominent activities, having started more than 50 years ago. The World Heritage List was created to enable the preservation and protection humanity's natural and cultural sites of importance from ill-considered human actions and extreme circumstances, including natural disasters and conflicts. To date, UNESCO lists more than 1100 cultural and natural sites worldwide.