Kocēni and Zilaiskalns


To the west from Valmiera is Kocēni county, which unites Bērzaine, Dikļi, Kocēni, Vaidava and Zilaiskalns parishes. Kocēni county is rich with more than 6,000 inhabitants and many beautiful and interesting places that must be seen by everyone who visits the county. Find out more about Kocēni region here.

The Chronicle of Henry is written in Rubene. The traditions of the Christian congregation in Rubene began in 1208, when the pastors and later the author of the Livonian chronicle Henricus de Lettis gathered Latgalians in the ancient Imera region. "Henry's Chronicle" is the oldest chronicle written in the territory of Latvia.
The first Latvian Song Festival took place in Dikļi. In the summer of 1864, the first Latvian Song Festival took place in the pastoral manor grove near Neikenkalniņš. The festival was organized by Juris Neikens, who was also a prominent pastor, writer, teacher, organizer of educational work.
A unique open-air gallery has been created in the former Pier Pub - Caurumkrogs. The works of the local artist Jānis Staņislavs Rozes can be constantly seen there. Jānis Staņislavs Roze (1823–1897) was a Latvian portraitist, whose life path began right here, in Caurumkrogs, Kocēni district.
Beer, alcohol and cheese were once made in Kokmuiža. Kokmuiža or Kokenhof was built in Polish times, according to Kārlis Vanags guide to the homeland published in 1937. At that time it was not nearly as proud as the current light green white manor. The manor, as well as the now reborn Kokmuiža festival and beer traditions, invites everyone to the ancient Kokmuiža.
Zilaiskalns was a particularly sacred place for the ancient peoples. Wrapped in legends and stories, the mountain is a symbol of the freedom and immortality of the people and even today it is a place where you can draw strength and renew your strength. The ancient peoples celebrated their honor there and performed ancient rituals. Currently, stories about the mountain are collected by the Zilākalns cultural history and visitor center, which is located at the foot of the mountain.
Sietiņiezis is the largest white sandstone outcrop in Latvia and the Baltics. Sietiņiezis stores heat when it warms up in the sun, so a wild bee species has chosen it as a home for its larvae. It was the bees that created the unique sieve for the rock, and therefore this object is called Sietiņiezis.
The south-eastern border of Kocēni county is River Gauja. The River Gauja flows through a wide and distinctly ancient valley that began to form 300-370 million years ago. The last major transformation in the ancient valley took place 12 to 13 thousand years ago, when the present ancient valley was formed by the retreat of the glacier. The walking and cycling route "Mežtaka" leads along the River Gauja.
Lake Vaidava and the adjacent territory is one of the most popular recreation places in Kocēni county. Lake Vaidava offers opportunities for active rest and relaxation both in summer and winter.
Bērzaine Parish is proud of the first pit stone found in Latvia. Daviņi Large Stone was found in 1925, and it was the first object of its kind in Latvia. There are 35 holes or pits on it.
A sophisticated four-star superior hotel is located in the Dikļi manor. Dikļi Castle is an expressive neo-baroque building, decorated with colorful attic roofs, ancient facade decorations, and surrounded by a large nature park. The castle rooms are decorated with exquisite interior details and objects. Of particular note are the old fireplaces and stoves, which have been carefully restored to maintain their authentic appearance.