Jekabpils Latvia

Keywords: Jekabpils Latvia
Description: Jekabpils is situated in the southeast part of Latvia, 145 km from country capital city Riga. Located on both banks of Daugava River, the town is divided into two parts: Jekabpils – more like

Jekabpils is situated in the southeast part of Latvia, 145 km from country capital city Riga. Located on both banks of Daugava River, the town is divided into two parts: Jekabpils – more like residential area and Krustpils – more like industrial area. The areas are connected with the bridge across the River. The town occupies an area of about 23 square kilometres where more than 26.000 inhabitants live. For centuries Jekabpils was a strong industrial town, inhabitants of which are faith and responsible for their and their children future.

Jekabpils town started developing in 1237, on the right bank of Daugava when Bishop of Riga Nicholas from  Magdeburg built a new castle called Krustpils (Cross castle) here. People started settling around the castle. In 1511, the area was mentioned in Bishops Country papers as a Krustpils village. In the 16th century, opposite the Krustpils castle, on the other side of Daugava River there started settling persecuted Old Believers of Russia. This place was named in honour of its former Duke of Courland Jacob Kettler Jekabpils (Jakobstadt, Jacob’s village).

Until 1962, Jekabpils was divided into two villages Krustpils and Jekabpils that were separated by Dagava River. The location on the bank of the River influenced the main trade of the inhabitants – trackers and rafters. Jekabpils and Krustpils suffered strongly from the enemies that were attacking for centuries: Polish-Swedish war, Great Northern War, Invasion of Russian Empire, WWI and WWII. However, every time people of ruined villages managed to rebuild their homes and working conditions afterwards. The 19th century was the century of constructions and hard and profitable work in rafting business. There was opened a new Jekabpils hospital, Zilanu Kruspils railway station built, a naval collage opened. However, the 20th century brought a lot of losses because of WWI and WWII.  On the other hand, Krustpils and Jekabpils were finally connected in 1962 by building a new strong bridge and was named as Jekabpils. In Jekabpils district there were established several large companies as sewing factory, Dolomite and Concrete factories, Milk and Meat Proceeding factories, Canning factory etc and several local enterprises.

Today Jekabpils is an industrially developing town. It`s location on the highway Riga-Daugavpils-Belarusian and on the railway line between Latvia and Ukraine, Poland and Russia increases economical potential a lot. Not all factories survived post Soviet Union times and present economical crisis. However, today there are operating several big companies that are known not just domestically, but also behind the board of Latvia.

As an old historical town, Jekabpils preserved many historical, cultural and natural sites. Krustpils palace complex, Old Town Sqaure, Jekabpils History museum and its outdoor section, the 19th century buildings in the Brivibas street, the longest street of the town. Today the town owns eleven churches, that are built in different centuries since 1618 and today serves for seven different Churches. The ones that are worth visiting are: Krustpils St. Nicholas Orthodox Church and monastery, Holy Spirit Orthodox Church, Krustpils Lutheran Church and St. Virgin Mary's birth the Roman Catholic Church. In the outskirts of the town visitors can find many different ways to spend their time in nature. Snaking Daugava River and surrounding Viesite, Sauka and few more lakes provides a perfect camping and relaxation on the banks and inside of the waters. Fishing, hunting, horseback riding, walks on the natural trails, Forest Park and mounds – these are an inherent attractions of Jekabpils and its district. In Jekabpils district, Struve Park, tourists can visit one of the elements of UNESCO object - Struve astronomical point. Tourists here are also welcome to play paintball, tennis, ride kartings and have a nice relaxation in water recreation centre. Either you will decide to stop in Jekabpils for cup of coffee; either to spend here a few days, you will be glad afterwards that you have stopped at this historic progressing town.

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