Protection and Civil Defense

Civilian Command Facilities

National Governmental Facility

Secret Soviet Bunker in Līgatne

Secret Soviet Bunker in Līgatne

Full name of site:

Latvian SSR Governmental War Facility

Location:

Līgatne, Letland

Operational period:

1982

to

1991

Primary user:

Latvian SSR

Description:

The bunker was built during the Cold War when the Soviet Union maintained constant high alert for a Western attack, more specifically a nuclear assault from the United States. It is hard to imagine, though, how the elite of Soviet Latvia would have been rushed to the bunker in a few minutes, given that the distance from Riga to Ligatne is 75 kilometers. This makes one suspect that the bunker might have been used also in case a nuclear war launched by the Soviet Union. The bunker was supplied with everything necessary to survive severa months after a nuclear fallout.
Līgatne Bunker, constructed 9 meters beneath the ground, was intended to serve as a shelter for Latvia’s Communist elite in case of a hypothetical nuclear war. Displayed at the shelter are authentic exhibits which have survived there from Soviet times. The secrecy shrouding the bunker was so great that for 30 years, employees and clients of the adjacent rehabilitation center remained unaware of the underground structure underneath their feet.

Tourists can have a 1980s-style meal here, sitting at a table covered by wax-cloth and drinking from faceted vintage glasses. The menu features entries like the ‘Kolkhoz combo’ with soup, stewed fruit drink and rye bread.
Active and adventurous people who are not afraid to go on a secret mission for an adrenaline boost, can take part in the reality game “Object X” at the bunker. Participants play the roles of secret agents on a mission to save their homeland from a catastrophe.

Ownership:

Ltd Rehabilitation centre „Līgatne”

Valuation of authenticity and integrity:

Partly preserved interior

Status and access:

Museum. Open to the public