Even the clean air, charged by the surrounding nature seems saturated with historic memories and stories, which bring the traveller in Kocēni municipality to the breath-taking world many centuries ago.
Once the ancient Latgalians called this place their home. Henry, the famous writer of the chronicles, served in the first Latvian congregation of Rubene, and the members of this congregation were the first Latgalians to be christianised. The smart priest wrote the Livonian Chronicle, which is a rich source of history until nowadays.
Dikļi is home to the most powerful traditions of the Latvian culture – the Festival of Song, and the newly built Nature concert hall at Mound Neikenkalns is a nice reminder.
The legendary 66 m high mound Zilaiskalns, which is covered with trees, was an ancient Latgalian holy place. It is said that people had stood on the top of the mound and had sung folk songs and performed ancient rituals.
The white sandstone outcrop with its surface featuring a lot of small cavities made by wild bees – Sietiņiezis – is an artwork developed by the nature over millions of years, Take the trail and the stairs to observe it from different angles!
In Neikenkalns, near Dikļi Church the tradition of Song Festival is said to have its origin. In 1864, the priest and writer Juris Neikens has invited local singers here. At present travellers coming to mound Neikenkalns will see a unique nature concert hall.
A lot of interesting about the diverse flora is told and can be seen at the nature education centre „Vecupītes“.
Children will find the nature trail of the poet Viks most enjoyable, since it is a trail featuring various fairy-tale characters and a playground.
The local nature, green fields and forests can be watched also either from the horseback, or riding a bicycle on the facilitated paths. Summer is also the time to enjoy a nice swim in the scenic Lake Vaidavas.
Dikļi castle, which is erected on the land of the old Dikļi manor, reveals paintings from the Awakening period, more than 20 beautiful fireplaces and ovens, along with luxurious interior. At present the castle accommodates a four-star hotel, restaurant, and leisure facilities.
You can also visit the Neo-baroque manor Kokmuiža, and on the stalls of it you will find the first spherical sundial in Latvia. A brewery was once established in the manor, and beer was made using the clean spring water.