What a year for Riga. Not only does January 1 mark the official entry of Latvia into the Eurozone, it also welcomes a year-long celebration of the capital, Riga, being named one of two European Capitals of Culture. Beginning in January, concerts, art exhibits, and other patriotic events will usher in the two milestones. Don’t miss the “Chain of Booklovers,” in which tens of thousands of Latvians will line up hand-in-hand to pass hundreds of books down a distance of nearly two miles in Riga. Equally promising: the World Choir Games, considered a singer’s Olympics. In recent years, Riga, the largest city in the Baltic States, has experienced a renaissance of sorts, with cool coffee shops, colorful art nouveau buildings, and tasty, modern restaurants adorning the up-and-coming European destination.