Latvia's traditional midsummer - or Jāņi - celebrations proved as popular as ever on the night of June 23 to 24, with generally benign weather conditions and centenary enthusiasm prompting hundreds of thousands to sing songs, eat cheese, drink beer and jump over bonfires - not necessarily in that order.

Rīga city council estimated that more than 100,000 people had taken part in midsummer events laid on in the Latvian capital, while social media recorded many thousands more taking to the fields and forests for the most important date on the Latvian calendar, eng.lsm.lv reports.

Jāņi is the most popular Latvian festivity. It is a day when cities vacate and every civil servant and bank clerk shows their pagan side. It originated as an ancient fertility festival celebrated after sowing the crops and before gathering harvest.

More on Latvian traditional festivities here.

25.06.2018