Country Profile Flags of EstoniaCoat of arms of EstoniaEstonian anthemIndependence Date: August 20, 1991 (from the USSR) Official language: Estonian Government Form: Parliamentary Republic Territory: 45,227 km² (132nd in the world) Population: 1,286,540 people. (151st in the world) Capital: Tallinn Currency: Euro (EUR) Time zone: EET (UTC +2, in summer UTC +3) Largest cities: Tallinn, Tartu, Narva, Kohtla-Järve, PärnuVP: $ 29.944 billion (106th) in the world) Internet domain: .ee, .euPhone code: +372

Estonia - one of the smallest countries in Europe. It has a fascinating history, a vibrant and energetic culture and offers tourists an amazing variety of landscapes, from the dense forests where moose, bears and wild boars are found, to Baltic beaches and coastal islands. Historical cities, castles, cathedrals, aristocratic mansions are waiting for visitors. Less than 20 years after the secession from the USSR, Estonia turned into a pretty European state, which defended its national identity in the turbulent events of recent history.

Old Tallinn

general information

Joining the European Union in 2004 gave Estonia a sense of belonging — this time voluntary — to a larger cultural and economic space.

Estonian is close to Finnish, and culturally Estonians are closer to Finns than to their neighbors from Latvia, bordering Estonia in the south.

Estonians are unfairly perceived as cold and inhospitable people. Their culture does not encourage inclination to spontaneous fun and revelry.

In general, Estonians are a very friendly nation, and their English is very common.

Estonia is located on the southern coast of the Gulf of Finland, at the eastern end of the Baltic Sea, at 59 ° north latitude and 26 ° east longitude. Its area is 45,226 km².

Saaremaa Mills

Cities of Estonia

Tallinn: Tallinn - a city with a long history, a major seaport, the capital of Estonia. This is a place where even ... Narva: Narva is a "double" city; she stands on the river Narva, which separates Estonia from Russia. Before gaining ... Tartu: Tartu is the second largest city in Estonia with a population of over 100,000. Tartu stands on ... Pärnu: Pärnu, located on the banks of the Gulf of Riga at the mouth of the Pärnu River, is a stylish summer capital ... Paldiski: Paldiski is a city on the coast of the Gulf of Finland, located on a cape on the western tip of the northern ... Rakvere: Rakvere is the sixth largest Estonian city, the capital of Lääne-Virumaa. Most famous for its ... Kärdla: Kärdla is a city in Estonia, the administrative center and the largest city in the province of Hiiumaa. Got ... Kohtla-Järve: Kohtla-Järve is the fourth largest city in Estonia (after Tallinn, Tartu and Narva), ... Johvi: Johvi is a small town in the northeastern part of Estonia, located 46 km west of Narva. All cities of Estonia


Estonia has a humid maritime climate with moderately cold winters and cool summers. The proximity of the Baltic Sea softens the climate and increases the winter temperature on the coast - here it is sometimes 4 ° C warmer than inside the country. In winter (from November to March) the temperature fluctuates near zero, not exceeding + 4 ° С, and the snow lasts up to five months a year. In summer, the maximum daily temperature is about 22 ° C and only occasionally rises to 27-28 ° C.

In winter, in shallow waters, water freezes; but on sunny summer days (in the middle of summer light day lasts up to 19 hours) The waters of the Baltic become surprisingly warm, especially in July and August, and it is a pleasure to swim here.The average annual rainfall is about 600 mm, of which 150 mm falls as snow.

Winter in Estonia

Lakes and forests

Estonia, like the neighboring countries, is located in the lowlands. Its highest point, the top of the Munamägi mountain, is only 318 m above sea level. This area is swampy and densely forested (forests cover about 44% of the territory, and arable land - only 16%). There are about 1,400 lakes here, from small forest ponds to Peipsi Lake (Chudskoye) - the fourth largest in Europe with a surface area of ​​3555 km².

Swamp Tolkuse Estonian Forest

The border between Estonia and Russia runs along Lake Peipsi from north to south, along the River Narva, which flows into the Gulf of Finland. Lake Võrtsjärve in the south of the country covers an area of ​​approximately 270 km². Estonian lakes are shallow: the maximum depth of Peipsi is only 15 m, and Võrtsjärve is less than 6 m.

Wetlands, including deep peat bogs, cover more than 20% of the country's territory. Peat is one of the local natural resources along with combustible shales, but both types of fuel have their drawbacks. Peat extraction is a potential threat to the unique nature of Estonia; Sulfur dioxide emissions at heat stations operating on oil shale have also led to air pollution.

However, over the past 20 years, sulfur dioxide emissions in Estonia have been reduced by 80% and pollution of water bodies with sewage has decreased by 95% compared with the mid-1980s. In the post-Soviet era, much more attention is paid to environmental protection measures.

Lake Võrtsjärv

Coast and Islands

Beach on the Gulf of Finland, near Narva

The coasts of Estonia are turned to the north, towards the Gulf of Finland, and to the west, towards the Gulf of Riga.

In the coastal waters, there are more than 1,500 islands and islets, from large ones, such as Saaremaa and Hiiumaa, to points on a map like Kihnu, Ruhnu and even smaller skerries. Many of them are uninhabited, in part because access to them was closed in Soviet times.

Estonia’s closest neighbors are Latvia, with which it shares 339 km of the southern border, and Russia with a border line 294 km long in the east.

wild nature


Unfortunately, conservation measures still do not fully protect wild forest animals in Estonia.

In the dense forests of the country, mainly coniferous, interspersed with birch and beech, 500 brown bears, 100-150 wolves, 700 lynxes inhabit (the largest population in Europe) and many thousands of elk and wild boars. A large population of raccoon dogs, first introduced to the country in the 1950s with the aim of obtaining fur. Estonians enthusiastically hunt all these animals. After independence, Estonia became a place of pilgrimage for wealthy hunters from Europe and America.

Beavers, flying squirrels, raccoons, muskrats and minks also inhabit the Estonian rivers, forests and lakes. (these fur-bearing animals were imported from North America in Soviet times for the development of animal breeding).

There are more than ten species of rare frogs, newts and salamanders, as well as golden eagles, which are threatened with extinction. In Estonia, there are about 250 pairs of these beautiful birds of prey. In spring and autumn, large flocks of migratory birds, including the rarely found black storks, gather on the lakes.

Despite the harsh climate, the fertile soil of Estonia feeds almost 1,500 plant species - from coniferous, such as pine, spruce and powerful larch, to cold-resistant deciduous trees, such as birch, elm, linden and beech. Water lilies grow on marshes.

Sights of Estonia

Peipsi Lake: Peipsi Lake is a large freshwater lake located on the territory of two states at once - ... Saaremaa Island: Saaremaa is the largest island in Estonia with a population of about 40,000 people ... Tallinn Town Hall Square: Tallinn Town Hall Square is the center of the lower quarter of the Old Town in the ring of parapet walls ... Park Kadriorg: Park Kadriorg is a baroque palace and park ensemble in Tallinn. Its name was Ekaterinental ... Church of Niguliste: The Church of Niguliste is a former Lutheran church in the Old Town of Tallinn.This temple, named in ... Oleviste Church: The Oleviste Church is one of the most interesting buildings in Tallinn. In the Middle Ages, on the territory of everything ... Tallinn Town Hall: Tallinn Town Hall is a medieval monument of architecture in the Gothic style, located on the Town Hall ... Toila-Oru Park: Toila-Oru Park is located in the valley of the River Pyhayygi in the Ida-Virumaa region in north-east Estonia, ... Toompea Castle: Toompea Castle is a medieval fortress on the eponymous hill in the center of Tallinn. Originally a castle ... All sights of Estonia


People on the street

Estonia’s population is about 1.3 million, with 400,000 living in Tallinn, the capital of the republic. By major cities include Tartu (101,000 people), Narva (69,000 people), Kothla-Järve (48,000 people) and Pärnu (46,000 people). The average population density is rather low, only 30 people per 1 km².


Slightly less than 70% of the population are ethnic Estonians, and ethnic Russians - more than 25% (in Tallinn there are more than 40%). Other minorities include the few Ukrainians, Belarusians, Finns and representatives of several other nationalities of the former USSR. Although most of them were born and raised in Estonia, and many are descendants of Russians who settled here several generations ago, their presence serves as a reminder of the centuries of Russian rule.

On the other hand, many ethnic Russians feel deprived of their rights in the new Estonia. Most Russians have made a choice in favor of Estonian citizenship, which requires knowledge of the Estonian language and the official new version of the country's history. A significant number of Russian-speaking elderly people are unable to fulfill these requirements, and as a result, about 165,000 ethnic Russians in Estonia formally do not have the citizenship of the country and are deprived of the right to vote.

Christianity came late to pagan Estonia, which was forcibly baptized in the thirteenth century. and adopted the Lutheran faith in the XVII century. During the Soviet era, religious institutions were disapproved; as a result, only 32% of Estonians, including 180,000 Lutherans and 170,000 Orthodox, consider themselves to be religious people, and there is no official state religion in the country.


  • 9000-7500 The first settlements in the region of modern Estonia; During the excavations, stone weapons and tools were found.
  • Stone burial grounds of the Bronze Age in northern Estonia
  • 3000-2000 The Finno-Ugric tribes, from which the current Estonians, Finns, Sámi and Karelians, descend from the east and settle around the Gulf of Finland.
  • 1202-1230 Swordtails (Knights of Christ, Order of the German Crusaders, subsequently the Livonian Order) they conquer most of Estonia and Latvia, defeat the Estonian leader Lembitu in 1217, and forcibly convert the inhabitants to Christianity. Denmark captures Revel (present Tallinn) and Northern Estonia, but inferior to her swordtails in 1227. From that time until independence, Estonia was included in the region known as Livonia, which also included part of modern Latvia.
  • 1242 Russian prince Alexander Nevsky defeats the Teutonic knights on Lake Peipsi (Lake Peipsi) and stops them.
  • 1343-1346 "The Night of St. George" - a revolt against Danish rule in Northern Estonia. Denmark sells the region to the Livonian Order of the Teutonic Knights and gives them control over most of Estonia. German barons dominate the country until the 20th century. The Hanseatic League merchants control coastal trade and cities, including Revel and Pärnu.
  • Capture of Narva by Ivan the Terrible
  • 1558-1629 The Baltic states are devastated during the Livonian wars involving Muscovy (Russia), Sweden and Poland / Lithuania.
  • 1582 Poland / Lithuania displaces Russians from Southern Estonia, and Sweden from Northern and Western Estonia. Denmark captures the island of Saaremaa.
  • 1592-1629 The war between Sweden and Poland. Sweden displaces Poland from Livonia and draws the inhabitants of the region from the Catholic to the Lutheran faith.
  • 1645 Sweden acquires the island of Saaremaa from Denmark.
  • 1700-1721 The Northern War between Sweden and Russia ends with the defeat of Sweden. By the Nishtadt Peace Treaty of 1721Russia joins Estonia and Latvia.
  • Tallinn in the 1630s. Engraving of Adam Olearius
  • 1800-1900 XIX century. was relatively peaceful for Estonia. She did not touch the Great French Revolution and the war with Napoleon (1789- 1815). The Baltic German barons and landowners continue to control the country that is formally under Russian rule. In 1811, the Estonian serfs, who were actually serfs of landowners, receive exemption and the right to own their own land. Education flourishes, and in the second half of the XIX century. University of Tartu (founded in the era of Swedish rule) becoming the center of enlightenment and Estonian national culture, and Revel and Narva become industrial cities. The Lutheran faith encourages literacy, and at the end of the century it became almost universal in Estonia. In the 1890s railway connection between St. Petersburg and Revel opens.
  • 1914-1918 Being a part of Russia, Estonia is involved in war and for a short time falls under German occupation.
  • Estonian armored train in January 1919
  • February 1917 The first Russian revolution and the overthrow of the monarchy. New Russia gives Estonia the right to self-government under Russian rule.
  • February 1918 Germany invades Estonia. Estonia proclaims complete independence from Russia. Tallinn (former Revel) occupied by German troops. After the defeat of Germany in 1918, Soviet Russia is trying to win Estonia (together with Latvia and Lithuania)but fails due to the military intervention of Britain.
  • 1919 The last units of the Red Army are retreating from Estonia.
  • 1920 Soviet Russia signs a treaty that formally recognizes Estonia as an independent state. Until 1940, the first two decades of independence of Estonia lasted.
  • 1933 Konstantin Pate, Prime Minister of independent Estonia, proclaims himself a dictator after an unsuccessful attempt at a right-wing coup.
  • 1940 After the conclusion of the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact between the USSR and Nazi Germany, Estonia is included in the USSR.
  • 1941-1944 Nazi Germany invades Estonia and unites it with Latvia, Lithuania and Belarus into the occupation territory called Ostland. About 5,000 Estonian Jews were murdered by Nazis and Estonian collaborators; up to 50,000 Estonians are enrolled in the Wehrmacht (German army) or in auxiliary units.
  • Fortress in Narva
  • 1945-1991 Estonia remains part of the USSR until the collapse of the country in 1991. A large number of Russians migrate to Estonian cities to work in new enterprises. Tallinn's pre-war population (175,000 people) doubles, mainly due to Russian immigration. Most of Estonia during this period remains inaccessible to Western tourists, and military installations are being erected on the coast. However, Tallinn is becoming popular among guests from neighboring neutral Finland, attracted by the low prices of alcohol and other goods.
  • 1988 As the Soviet regime softens, Estonians seek to expand self-government. Peaceful protests and calls for separation from the USSR accompany the "singing revolution" when hundreds of thousands of Estonians get together and sing officially banned nationalist hymns. Similar processes occur in other Baltic republics. The Estonian Supreme Council declares the national sovereignty of the country within the USSR.
  • 1991 In the course of the national referendum, the overwhelming majority of residents vote for separation from the USSR. Full independence proclaimed on August 20.
  • 1992 Estonia officially adopts a new democratic constitution. The first free elections are held in the country, in which the center-right party of the Fatherland wins.
  • 1995 The last Russian garrisons are withdrawn from the former Soviet military bases in Estonia.
  • 1996 The conclusion of a treaty between post-Soviet Russia and Estonia is the official recognition of the independence of the Republic of Estonia. Estonia refuses claims to the border area east of the Narva River. However, this agreement has not yet been fully ratified.The stumbling block is Estonia’s unwillingness to endow all Russian-speaking residents with full citizenship rights.
  • 2004 Estonia joins the EU and NATO; The country is open to large investments from Western Europe.
  • 2006 T.X. was elected the new President of Estonia. Ilves.
  • Roofs of Tallinn
  • 2007 The reform party won the parliamentary elections. The demolition of the memorial in honor of the fallen Soviet soldiers in World War II provoked a whole series of protests from the Russian population of Tallinn.
  • 2008 The global economic crisis has left an indelible mark on the economy of Estonia.
  • 2009 Hansabank becomes Swedbank.
  • 2011 The twentieth anniversary of the independence of Estonia from the USSR. Preparing for the next parliamentary and presidential elections. Estonia is planning to switch to the euro.
  • 2013 Conducting the folklore festival "Baltika".
  • 2014 Carrying out the All-Estonian Song Festival in Tallinn.


Central square in Tartu

The history of Estonia has not prepared the country for self-government, but it was relatively easy and without violence to make the transition from a one-party political system of the Soviet era to a multi-party democratic state even in the tense conditions of the collapse of the USSR and the departure of Soviet troops from military bases in the country.

Before the invasion of the Crusaders in the XIII century. Estonia was a loose confederation of clans and tribes coexisting relatively peacefully.

Baltic barons

The Middle Ages were marked by the dominion of the German nobles, bishops and archbishops who ruled vast land and kept servants in obedience. (serfs).

The country passed from hand to hand, from one northern power to another, but these aristocrats retained their power until the beginning of the 20th century, when the Estonian people for the first time demanded greater freedom.

War and revolution

Angry rock overtook the Baltic barons with the First World War and the Russian revolution, which for the first time gave Estonia the opportunity to taste the taste of national independence. Unfortunately, independence did not bring democracy with itself, and Estonia, like its Baltic neighbors, fell under the power of the “strong hand” of dictator Konstantin Päts, who banned political parties.

Soviet era

Morning in Tallinn

The ostentatious democracy of the Estonian Soviet Socialist Republic 1945-1991. turned out to be no better than the dictatorship of the 1930s; therefore, one cannot fail to pay tribute to the political instincts and courage of the Estonian people, who in a short time created a democratic state from scratch.

Modern politics

Of course, the young republic faces urgent problems. But joining the European Union and NATO in 2004 gave the country powerful allies and great confidence in negotiations with its eastern neighbor.

According to the constitution adopted in 1992, there is a unicameral parliament in the country (Riigikogu)whose members (101) elected every four years.

The president is the head of state and is elected for a five-year term. He appoints the prime minister with the approval of most members of parliament. The Prime Minister, in turn, appoints cabinet members, whose composition must also be approved by parliament. The last presidential election was held in 2006; last parliamentary elections in 2007

The first democratically elected president of Estonia was the writer Lennart Meri, the minister of foreign affairs of the republic during the Soviet era. Meri was elected for a second term in 1996; Toomas Hendrik Ilves, current president, was elected in 2006.

Political parties

Toompea Castle Towers

After independence, Estonia implemented a multi-party democracy; Political pluralism has led to the fact that not a single political party has been able to achieve an absolute majority in the parliament, dominated by two major parties: the centrist party and the Reform Party. The latter won the 2007 parliamentary elections, gaining 31 seats and forming a government coalition, which included representatives of smaller parties - the Party. (Pro Patria) and Republic (Res Publika - IRL) - with a total number of beds 19.The Center Party won 29 seats in parliament. Other significant political associations include the Social Democratic Party, the Green Party and the People’s Union of Estonia. Parliamentary and presidential elections are scheduled for 2011.

In practice, there are relatively few fundamental differences between Estonian political parties; they are mainly related to the attitude towards the free market and integration into Western Europe.

Unlike some former Soviet republics and satellite states, as well as Russia itself, where many voters still yearn for the Stalin era and "strong hand", Estonia is free from nostalgia for the Soviet past. The statues of Lenin and other revolutionary leaders, as well as Soviet war memorials, were torn down or sent to museums and antique shops.

In such a small country, there is little reason for conflict between the central government and the regions. Administratively, Estonia is divided into 15 districts: Harju, Hiiumaa, Geda-Virumaa, Järvamaa


Blacksmith shop

Even under Soviet rule, Estonia was a relatively prosperous republic, mainly due to trade with its neighbor, neutral Finland, which was in special political and economic relations with the USSR. After independence, Estonia became one of the most economically successful post-Soviet states with a GDP growth of around 8% between 2003 and 2007. Like other countries, the Estonian economy experienced a deep crisis of 2008–2009, when GDP fell by 15%. Nevertheless, Estonia’s plans include joining the Eurozone in 2011.

As a member of the WTO and the European Union, Estonia has made an effective transition to a modern market economy, including a strong peg of its currency. (crowns) to the euro rate. The economy thrives on a highly developed electronics and telecommunications industry and is strongly influenced by Sweden, Finland and Norway, the three main trading partners.

Tallinn's business district

Heavy industry, which played a major role in the economy in the Soviet era, has now faded into the background compared to the services sector, which provides 75% of economic activity and provides jobs for about 70% of the working age population.

Industry is dominated by engineering, electronics, information technology, telecommunications and woodworking. (28% of the economy), and agriculture gives only a little more than 4%.

EU membership not only provides Estonia with wide opportunities, but also imposes certain obligations on it. Investments from the European Union are likely to increase, but investors demand a stable economic and political environment that will put an end to corruption scandals affecting almost all Estonian political parties.

Estonia seeks to enter the euro area and become a party to the Schengen Agreement in order to integrate its economy more closely with EU partners and ensure freer movement of labor and capital; but to achieve this goal, it must meet stringent economic criteria in the field of economics and security.

For tourists, EU membership has already simplified the formalities at the entrance to Estonia. Residents of EU member states no longer need to issue entry visas.


AHHAA Museum and Tigutorn - the highest building in Tartu

For centuries the Estonian national culture was in a depressed state, since the territory of the country was part of other states, and began to flourish only in the 19th century, when many essays were published in Estonian.

Writers and playwrights

The cornerstone of Estonian literature is Kalevipoeg. ("The Son of Kalev") - The epic story of the mythical Estonian hero with echoes of the Anglo-Saxon Beowulf and the British Legends of Arthur's Death, although in fact it is a creation of an Estonian of German origin, Friedrich Reinhol-da Kreutzwald, who composed him in 1857-1861.

In turn, Kreutzwald drew inspiration from the Finnish epic Kalevala, which also describes the rise and fall of the legendary warrior king.

Golden age

Cows in the meadow

The brief golden age of Estonian literature coincided with two decades of national independence. (1919-1940)when Anton Hansen Tammsaare (1878-1940) published his works in Estonian. Tammsaare is best known for his Truth and Justice village life saga; Those interested can visit the Tammsaare Museum in Tallinn, located in the author’s former home and dedicated to his life and work.

Tammsaare's contemporaries were Edward Wilde (1865-1933), a prolific author, whose works had a profound influence on the Estonian literary tradition, and Lydia Koidula (1843-1886)who drew her inspiration from Estonian cultural identity.

Oral legends

Many Estonian writers have relied on the rich heritage of oral folklore, which undoubtedly contributed to the preservation of the national culture during the long centuries of foreign rule.

More contemporary authors include Jaan Cross and Arvo Walton, who were sent to Siberian exile after their works published in Soviet times were condemned by censorship. Cross, like the poet Jaan Kaplinski, was elected to the first free Estonian parliament in 1992, and another leading Estonian poet, Paul Erik Raimo, became the first Estonian Minister of Culture in the same year.

Music and songs

Like neighboring Latvia, Estonia has a long tradition of songwriting, telling about the seasons, the beauty of the country, romance and family happiness, as well as ballads about national heroes dating back to pre-Christian times.

Street musicians

The old style of Estonian chants a cappella, the so-called rune chants, dates back to 1000 BC. er Rune verses with eight-syllable lines are still performed on special occasions, such as weddings, on the Baltic island of Kihnu in the Gulf of Riga.

Estonia is obliged to the musician of the XIX century. Jacob Hart preservation of thousands of folk songs and melodies, which he first carefully collected and recorded using musical notation. Estonians are more closely associated with traditional musical culture than most other Europeans, and throughout the year folk music festivals and poetry readings take place here regularly.

The greatest impression is made by the folk song festivals, which take place every five years and gather hundreds of thousands of spectators and performers, many of whom wear scenic costumes on this occasion. Such festivals played an important role in the campaign for independence in the late 1980s, known as the "singing revolution". The largest event gathered up to 300,000 people - this was an unprecedented expression of peaceful protest and popular solidarity. Many songs and chants are performed a cappella, but Estonia has its own musical instruments, in particular, a cannel, a kind of zither.

Open-air musical festivals are popular; they perform not only folk music and songs, but also jazz, rock, opera and classical music.

Arvo Pärt, widely known in Europe, is considered to be the leading contemporary classical composer in Estonia; his minimalist compositions clearly arose under the influence of folk choral singing. Another prominent contemporary composer, Veljo Tormis, is also strongly influenced by the unique Estonian tradition of rune chants.

Rock festival in Estonia

Painting and architecture

Estonian art has not risen to the heights achieved by outstanding works of the Estonian musical tradition.

Hiiumaa Lighthouse

Outside the country, few have heard of Kristjan Raud (1865- 1943)honored in Estonia as an illustrator of the Kalevipoeg saga and the leader of the revival of Estonian culture.Raud, who worked mainly in the engraving genre, was the founder of the school of “national romanticism,” whose supporters developed traditional themes of folk art: the seasons, the beauty of nature, and family values.

Raud’s house in Nomme is preserved as a museum named after him, and there you can see not only his works, but also engravings and paintings by other Estonian artists of the 19th and 20th centuries. Raud continues to influence contemporary painters, including the engraver Kallo Pyllu, among whose works there is a series called "Dialogues with Cristian Raud".

Houses in Nomme

Most contemporary Estonian artists, including Raul Mila, Sven Saag and Aili Vint, prefer to work with various abstract forms. Juri Arrak and Markus Kasemaa create fabulous images, and in the hallucinogenic, imaginary landscapes of Lembit Sarapuu, the influence of the Spanish surrealist Salvador Dali and the Belgian René Magritte is felt.

The visual arts were under the yoke of repressive governments for almost the entire twentieth century, but with independence, they received the opportunity of a new life. The works of famous contemporary artists and sculptors of Estonia can be seen in the stunning museum of painting. (KuMu)located in the Kadriorg park, as well as in the Hall of Arts of the Tallinn City Center. The Museum of Applied Arts in Tallinn constantly exhibits the work of students of the young generation of artists.

Interior decoration "Hotel Pallas" in Tartu

Guests of the Hotel Pallas in Tartu, built on the site of the country's first college of fine arts, will appreciate its interior. The fact is that the walls in the rooms are covered with artworks that copy pictures of famous Estonian artists in the period between the country's independence and World War II. Pärnu can rightly be proud of its exhibition halls in the Museum of Modern Art and the Art Gallery, where the works of modern masters are presented to the viewer.

In the House of Artist, located in the pre-war building, you can see young artists, sculptors and engravers at work.

Many of the remarkable historical buildings of Tallinn and other Estonian cities were restored and restored after the bombings and shelling of the Second World War. This also applies to Lutheran churches built during the era of Swedish rule, city halls, country houses and other official buildings in the characteristic Baltic style combining Swedish and German architectural traditions, as well as magnificent medieval castles.

Festivals and holidays


Estonia has a rich calendar of music and song festivals, which are held throughout the country, both indoors and outdoors.

Every five years (next - in 2017) All-Estonian Song Festival ( more than 100,000 people; the apogee of the event is the performance of folk hymns by consolidated choirs of up to 30,000 voices. Folklore festival "Baltika" (, collecting artists from the three Baltic republics, is another important event.

All-Estonian Song Festival

The Tallinn Singing Field, a huge open-air arena, is specially built for such large-scale events, and the other popular festival venue is the Estonian Open-Air Museum Rocca al Mara. Estonian musical tastes are not limited to folk and classical music. There are many rock bands in the country that perform in front of their fans at several summer rock festivals under the open sky.

Tallinn song field

Setu Day
Traditional folk festival held in Obinits in Võru County.

Theater week in Kuressaare
International festival of classical and new drama.


This international jazz festival is held in Tallinn. It attracts performers not only from the Baltic countries, but also from other countries.

May June

Days of Old Tallinn
The festival of music and dance, which is held at various venues under the roof and open air in the old quarter of Tallinn. Starts on the last weekend of May. Memme-taadi festival This folk dance and music festival takes place in mid-June in Tallinn, in the Estonian open-air museum. Yanov day (Jaanipaev) Very interesting holiday Jaanipaev (Jaanipäev, Yanov day)which is celebrated on the shortest night of the year from 23 to 24 June. At this time, on the streets of cities they dance, sing songs and dance around the fires.

Stage preparation on Tallinn’s market square. Ollesummer Festival

Festival "Ollesummer" ("Beer Summer")
Celebrated on the first weekend of July at the Tallinn Singing Field. Lots of beer, music and dancing. Vita Saru Folklore Festival Held every two years on Palmse manor in Lahemaa National Park, usually at the end of the first week of July. The next one is planned to be held in 2012. Viljandi Folk Festival This folklore festival takes place on the last weekend of July in the old town of Viljandi. Annual International Folklore Festival "Baltika" This festival, which lasts a whole week, with music, dancing and costume processions, takes place in Tallinn every three years. The next celebration is scheduled for 2013. Tallinn Summer Rock Festival For three days, the best Baltic rock and pop groups perform together with their foreign colleagues at the Tallinn Singing Field.


Classical Music Festival
Old and modern classical music performed by Estonian and international ensembles in Pärnu.

Festival of folk music
This event takes place annually in the second half of August in Pärnu.

Festival "Women in white"
The most famous specter of Estonia appears in this week’s grand finale of music and dance in Haapsalu.


Winter week in Tallinn
Music, dance and other performances at various venues in the Old Town at the end of December.

New Year in Estonia. In the photo area of ​​Tallinn

National and local holidays

Estonia celebrates most holidays along with the rest of Europe. Independence Day is celebrated in honor of the first Declaration of Independence of 1918; Victory Day marks the expulsion of the last foreign invaders from the territory of the Baltic states in 1919, and the Day of the Restoration of Independence marks the country's secession from the USSR in 1991. John's (June 24) - this is a midsummer holiday.

  • January 1 - New Year
  • February 24 - Independence Day March / April, variable date - Good Friday March / April, variable date - Easter
  • May 1 - May holiday
  • May 9 - Mother's Day
  • June 23 - Victory Day
  • June 24 - Day of sv. John's
  • August 20 - Independence Restoration Day
  • December 25 - Christmas
  • December 26 - Boxing Day

These days, government offices, banks and offices of many companies are closing, but with the exception of Christmas, Boxing Day and New Year, most shops, bars, restaurants and museums continue to work.


A visit to Estonia does not need to be planned in advance; You do not need special clothes or equipment. Now that cheap flights from European countries have appeared and it has become possible to book tickets online, many travel to Tallinn for a short while with minimal luggage. A winter visit or a major sightseeing tour is also easy to plan and implement.

Estonian nature in winter

When to go

Estonia can be visited all year round, and some say that its picturesque capital looks even more romantic in winter. However, most tourists come to the country from May to September, when the days are long and the weather is warm and sunny.

July and August are the warmest months of the year, with a temperature of 23-25 ​​° C, but the summer here is rainy. This is also a good time to get acquainted with the Estonian musical culture, as many music festivals take place during these summer months.

Of course, at the peak of the summer season, prices are higher than at other times of the year.

Where to go

Many Estonian guests are limited to the borders of Tallinn.There are certainly enough sights in the Estonian capital to take even the most demanding tourist for a few days: lots of museums and beautiful streets, extremely lively nightlife, shopping centers, cafes and restaurants.

If you want to experience the beauty of Estonian nature without departing from the capital, head to Lahemaa National Park, which includes more than 650 km of coast, rivers, lakes and forests inhabited by brown bears, lynxes and many other animals, as well as hundreds of bird species.

Lahemaa National Park On Peipsi Lake

More remote nature reserves offer even more privacy; there you can immerse yourself in the world of wildlife, go kayaking or canoeing along rivers and lakes, or go cycling.

Estonian lakes - including the huge Peipsi Lake, on the ice of which an epic medieval battle took place between the Russian princely militia and the German knights, attract lovers of water.

Tartu, located between Lake Peipsi and the second largest reservoir of Estonia, Lake. Võrtsjärv is a quiet university town with remarkable monuments of Swedish neoclassical architecture. Here you will not find drunk companies of youth from Britain or Ireland, flocking to the bars and nightclubs of Tallinn.

Matsalu Reserve

On the coast of Estonia, too, have something to see. The coastal islands, from the relatively large Saaremaa and Hiiumaa on the west coast to the tiny rocky islets where only migratory birds huddle, with their beaches and fishing villages - a great place for walking and cycling. There are small hotels and wooden cottages for rent.

Dozens of tiny islands dot the Hullo Bay on the island of Vormsi, and the Matsalu nature reserve on the west coast of the mainland serves as a haven for huge flocks of waterfowl.

What to take with you

Estonia is a European country with a relatively mild climate, so there is no need to take a lot of warm clothes with you, even if you go on a full holiday.

Sleeping area of ​​Tallinn

There are practically no restaurants or hotels in the country where a dress code is in effect, prescribing men to wear a jacket and tie, and women to wear evening dresses.

A waterproof jacket or raincoat, a hat or umbrella, and a light sweater or flannel shirt are necessary even in summer, as rain often happens at any time of the year.

In winter, bring warm shoes that are not afraid of snow and slush, a warm hat, scarf, gloves and a sweater along with a winter jacket or coat.

Boat on the lake

Modern Tallinn stores have a good range of western cosmetics and hygiene products. However, tourists who need special medications or prescription medications, it is better to stock up on them at home.

In the summer, especially if you are going to go out of town and into national parks, you need to take insect repellent with you, since the Estonian lowlands provide shelter for clouds of mosquitoes and midges (these volatile insects act on the nerves, but there is no evidence that they suffer malaria or other diseases). The most effective repellents with a high content of diethyltoluamide (DEET).

Take binoculars with you to observe the life of wild animals and birds. Most well-known brands of film are sold in Tallinn; outside the capital they are harder to get. Photographers who use professional or specialized film, such as Fuji Velvia, will have to bring extra tapes with them.

Information for cyclists: most airlines accept bicycles as baggage on a paid receipt.

Culture shock

Today, Tallinn is a quite modern western city, with bright new bars and restaurants offering a variety of cuisines, and shops full of western goods that were not available even on the black market 20 years ago.

If it is now possible to survive a cultural shock in Tallinn, it is a risk to meet something familiar in an unusual setting - for example, an incongruously large number of Irish bars in the city center.

Panorama of Tallinn

Not far from the busy streets of the city center are quarters of apartment buildings of the Soviet era, and Tallinn’s apparent well-being hides the economic difficulties faced by many former workers of currently inactive factories and shipyards, most of whom are Russian in origin. Other cities, such as Narva, are marked by the scars of the post-Soviet industrial collapse and will recover from this for a long time.

Manners and customs

Estonian children in the village

Like their Scandinavian neighbors to the north and west of the Baltic Sea, Estonians are so restrained and polite that their calm and courtesy may seem alienated or rude to representatives of more emotional peoples. This national trait can be partly explained by the fact that Estonia has been under the heel of foreign powers for many centuries, when open expression of emotions was not encouraged and could even turn out to be dangerous.

Either way, Estonians are reluctant to reveal themselves to foreigners and even to each other, so it’s almost impossible to see the smile on the face of the waiter, the clerk at the hotel or the seller in the store. But despite this, the modern Estonian mentality is far from the era of "unobtrusive services", when almost every question was followed by a negative answer.

In general, Estonians are happy to help the guests of the country. After independence, the Estonian business gained a reputation of being efficient and open, which puts Estonia head and shoulders above many post-Soviet republics and satellite states.

Estonian custom to give flowers - not only in special cases, but also at each visit to the house of a friend or acquaintance - speaks of the warmth and openness of their nature. In every Estonian town there is at least one flower market, flower trays stand at many intersections, and flower sellers meet passengers at railway stations and bus stops until late in the evening.

Beautiful sunset on the shores of the Gulf of Finland


In keeping with their reputation, Estonians avoid close physical contact - hugs and kisses during a greeting - with everyone except their close relatives.

A handshake at a meeting is a usual greeting for both men and women, and it is also normal to shake hands. A polite man gets up when a woman enters the room.

Estonians are aware that their language is very difficult for tourists and is almost unknown outside of Estonia. Many young Estonians and practically everyone who works in the field of tourism and related services speak good English and often German. Your clumsy attempts to explain in Estonian will not cause either approval or ridicule.

The Russian language is still closely associated with the Soviet period, and only a few Estonians readily use it, while Russian-speaking residents of the older generation do not like being forced to speak Estonian.

What to do in Estonia

Europeans like to visit Tallinn for a short weekend getaway, but there are still surprisingly few foreign visitors in other regions of the country. Meanwhile, Estonia can offer tourists not only urban spectacles and nightly entertainment. There are several sanatoriums and resorts that offer treatment with sea water and mineral mud. Virgin forests and swamps occupy a significant part of the country; large areas are under state protection in reserves and national parks. Numerous islands off the west coast offer nooks and unspoilt beaches to visitors.


Canoeing in Estonian rivers and lakes is a great way to get away from the daily routine. There are ample opportunities for both beginners and experienced canoeists, from short walks to real rafting, lasting several days.Various companies offer canoe tours, including guided tours, meals, boat rental and security.

Canoeing Bicycle rental

Bike rides

Estonia is the best for cycling trips. This is a small country, so cyclists can explore a significant part of its territory in one or two weeks. Landscapes are quite diverse, from the marshy lowlands and river valleys to dense forests and coastal cliffs, so the trip will not be boring. The terrain is mostly flat, so that fatigue does not threaten cyclists.

Automobile traffic outside the four main cities is relatively small. In the summer, when the sun does not set for a long time, cyclists can travel a long distance over a daylight day. Outside the city there are many places for camping, and those who do not have a tent are offered accommodation in simple log cabins.

There is an extensive network of special cycling routes in the country, and a number of companies in Tallinn offer bicycles for hire. (the list can be found in the tourist information office).

Route plans are developed jointly by the national cycling clubs, the Estonian Tourism Board, the Ministry of the Environment and local authorities; There are national, regional and local routes. You can view the cycle route map at

In Estonia on bicycles

Trips to the islands

It is sometimes said that there are several thousand coastal islands in Estonia, but most of them are uninhabited sand banks or rocky outcrops. However, the west coast and the Gulf of Riga have an archipelago of several inhabited islands, including Saaremaa (the largest), Hiiumaa, Vormsi, Muyu and Kihnu. The most quiet and remote island of Ruhnu is probably the best place for solitude in Estonia. It is located about 60 km west of Ikla, on the Estonian coast. To get there (and go back) This is not easy, as there are flights from Pärnu only once a week, and there is no regular ferry service, but there is a simple hotel on the island.

Larger islands are popular summer holiday destinations for Estonians. They are connected to continental ports by a well-established ferry service and offer guests a slightly higher level of comfort.

On the island of Hiiumaa Morning fog in the reserve Nigula

Nature reserves

Estonia is rich in natural beauty, and after separating from the USSR in 1991, it expanded its protected areas, so now almost 10% of the total territory of the country, inhabited by a large number of birds, insects, mammals, reptiles and amphibians, grows many plants, is under protection.

Even those who are not particularly interested in wildlife can find in these reserves an excellent antidote to the stress of city life.

Lahemaa National Park

All national parks are open to the public, in most cases free. The most popular parks have marked hiking trails and bird watching shelters; Excursion tours with specialists in local nature are also offered.

Estonia is richer in birds and mammals than most European countries. Due to its location between continental Europe and the arctic regions, it is located on the routes of many migratory birds making long journeys from summer nesting sites in the far north to winter quarters in southern Europe and Africa.

Thick Estonian forests provide shelter to large mammals such as moose, deer, lynx, wild boar, wolves and beavers.

Lahemaa National Park

This area of ​​pine forests, sandy beaches and rocky capes on the north coast is located closest to Tallinn, and you can visit it, arriving one day from the capital.

Alam-Pedya Nature Reserve / Haan Nature Park

Winter in the reserve

A natural park, located 60 km south-east of Tartu, surrounds the highest Estonian peak called Suur Munamägi (318 m) and the deepest lake in Estonia Suurjärve (38 m).

Nigula Reserve

This is a vast area of ​​peat bogs 45 km south of Pärnu; there are about 400 small lakes and ponds; The reserve is located near the Latvian border. There are plans to create a larger reserve in both countries.

Soomaa National Park

Soomaa National Park, located midway between Pärnu and Viljandi, was founded in 1993. It is a huge wetland formed by four large peat bogs (Kikepera, Kuresoo, Ordi and Valgeraba)as well as flood plains of the river Halliste.

Soomaa National Park

Matsalu Reserve


The Matsalu nature reserve is located between Liuula and Haapsalu in Western Estonia. Coastal islands and marshy plains attract millions of geese, ducks, loons and other waterfowl and marsh birds, which can be observed from several viewing towers placed in convenient places.

National Park Vilsandi

This state reserve on the western coast of Saaremaa includes a large stretch of coast, coastal areas and more than 160 islets and rocky skerries, where thousands of seabirds nest. About 500 plant species are under the protection of the reserve.


Boat off the island of Vilsandi

Most Estonians were cut off from their own sea in the Soviet era, when the coast of the country was considered a secret military zone. After independence, Estonians enthusiastically revived their nautical traditions.

In Pirita, near Tallinn, and in Toila, in the vicinity of Narva, there are yacht clubs and parking areas where you can rent yachts for day or longer cruises along the coast or to the Estonian islands.

Trips to Finland

The Finnish capital Helsinki, which has long-standing ties with Estonia, can be reached in two hours by sailing on a hydrofoil from Tallinn.

Finnish is very similar to Estonian, and although Finland did not become a Soviet satellite after World War II, it had “special relations” with the USSR. Finns often came to Tallinn even during the Soviet era.

Trips to Latvia


Latvia, the southern neighbor of Estonia, has a lot in common with it: it was also conquered by the Teutonic knights, later became part of the Russian Empire, experienced a brief flourishing of independence between the First and Second World Wars, later became part of the USSR On the other hand, for many tourists, Latvia represents a striking contrast with Estonia. There is a completely different language, a much more numerous and deeper rooted Russian population. If Estonians do not experience nostalgia for the USSR, many elderly people of Russian descent living in Latvia are not ready to send this period to the garbage dump of history.

From Valga in Southern Estonia, you can make a short visit to the Latvian city of Valka, since this is actually one urban entity artificially divided by the border between the two countries, which runs along a small river 2 m wide.

St. Peter's Church in Riga

For a more detailed acquaintance with Latvia, you can take a train or bus to Riga; the trip will take from 6 to 7 hours. As in Tallinn, the medieval center is well restored in Riga, surrounded by post-war accretions of Soviet factories and apartment buildings. In addition, in the Old Town of Riga, you can see picturesque houses in the art nouveau style of the late XIX - early XX century. As in Tallinn, after gaining independence, modern hotels, office buildings and supermarkets appeared in Riga.

Old city (Vecriga) is a group of medieval buildings between the Daugava River and the Pilsetas Canal. In its center rises the beginning of the XIII century cathedral, built in the Romanesque style, the most impressive medieval monument of the city, which only the Powder Tower, a powerful bastion of the XIV century, can compete with. of red brick, the walls of which are dotted with scars of centuries-old artillery shelling.

The Riga castle is sometimes compared to the medieval Estonian citadels; it may be disappointing, as it has been repeatedly reconstructed, and for hundreds of years nothing remains of the original towers and walls. On the other hand, behind the rather inexpressive facade of the castle are three museums. These are the Museum of Latvian History, the Museum of Latvian Literature, Music and Theater and the Museum of Foreign Art.

Riga’s most famous building is St. Peter’s Church with a characteristic triple spire. The main gate of this medieval red-brick building, built in the 15th century, is decorated with later baroque statues. Shining steel spire appeared in the XX century. instead of the baroque spire of the 18th century, destroyed by German artillery in 1941


Souvenir shop in Tallinn

Estonia has only recently become familiar with the Western cult of consumption. Compared to other European countries, there are few shopping opportunities. Selection of souvenirs and local products is limited. The shopping streets of Tallinn offer almost nothing that could not be bought cheaper in Western Europe or anywhere in the English-speaking world.

Among the best local products are sweaters, hats and hand-knitted scarves, traditional wicker dolls, and animal figurines. Amber Jewelry (imported from neighboring Latvia) also very popular.

Shops usually work from 10.00 to 18.00 on weekdays and from 10.00 to 17.00 on Saturdays. Large department stores in Tallinn are usually open from 10.00 to 20.00.

The most common credit cards, such as VISA and MasterCard, are accepted in supermarkets and shopping centers, but in souvenir shops and most shops outside the capital they prefer cash.

Viru shopping street in Tallinn

Lovers of antiquities should know that items made before 1700 are not allowed to be exported from the country, and for items made in Estonia before 1945. (including books), special permission required.

Western-style main shopping streets of Tallinn, Viru and Muurivahe, are located in the Old Town, and each one has several clothing stores and all sorts of accessories. The choice is not as wide as in most European countries, and prices are usually higher than in the UK or the USA.

Typical Estonian products can be found in small shops in the streets and courtyards of the Old Town. It sells souvenirs, paintings, engravings, crafts and knitwear.


Estonian children

In the summer in Estonia there are many opportunities for recreation and entertainment with active older children. The medieval towers and walls of Tallinn will delight children who love fantasy and are credited with the "Lord of the Rings" or the adventures of Harry Potter. There are special children's attractions in Tallinn, but in general, Estonia does not offer special amenities and entertainment for young tourists.

At the Tallinn Festival

In local cafes and restaurants you can easily find a special menu for children, high chairs, and in a rented car - safe child seats. In addition, the long summer days in Estonia are conducive to family outdoor recreation.

The country offers a wide range of accommodation in rural cottages, hotels and apartments and a variety of outdoor activities, including kayaking, canoeing, cycling, yachting and fishing.

Flat terrain is ideal for family cycling, and in winter, cross-country skiing and sledding are popular here.


Sexy statue in night Tallinn

Music is the most popular form of entertainment in Estonia; "literball" - the second most popular. In the Soviet era, Finnish tourists often arrived on the ferry to Tallinn at weekends to drink cheap beer and vodka. In post-Soviet Estonia, Tallinn has become one of the most popular cities for groups of young people who want to have a good time, and can offer guests dozens of bars, clubs and music venues for all tastes.

There are also a number of casinos and cinemas in the capital, where foreign films with Estonian subtitles are shown.Outside Tallinn, entertainment, especially nightly, is much less common; there are only a few music bars and discos in cities like Tartu and Pärnu. However, the hot season comes in summer: rock, jazz and many folk festivals are held annually, especially in July and August.

An indispensable guide for those seeking entertainment in Tallinn and other places will be the English-language weekly Tallinn This Week, offering a wide choice of addresses and events. It is distributed free of charge in hotels and tourist information offices. The Tallinn In Your Pocket magazine, published six times a year, is an excellent guide.


Club life in Tallinn is very active. In the music bars, booze is combined with live performance, so you can get salsa and rum in addition to reggae or Guinness beer in addition to Irish folk music. On Fridays, fun roars with special force, and the parties continue from about 22.00 to 6.00.

Independence put an end to decades of Soviet censorship in Estonia. One of the least attractive consequences of this was the flourishing of low-profile nightlife: there are dozens of strip clubs in Tallinn, sometimes the smallest poshiba. In these institutions, popular among bachelors and seconded businessmen, very expensive drinks are served, and you may be surprised to see the amount in your account.

Sports and recreation

Canoeing in Soomaa National Park

Estonia offers a wide range of activities for sports and outdoor enthusiasts, especially in summer. The best season is from May to September, when there is warm, often sunny weather, and the days are long. But in winter in Estonia you can do different kinds of sports.


Estonian Federation of Canoeists
Aasa, 1, Tartu. Tel: (372) 740-05-99. E-mail: [email protected]


Estonian Cycling Route Network is a joint project of the Vanta Aga Cyclists Club, the Estonian Tourism Board, the Ministry of the Environment, the road administration and regional authorities. It should become part of the EuroVelo network, which unites a number of international cycling routes throughout Europe.

Klubi Tartu Maraton, headquartered in Tartu, conducts Rattaralli cycling races at a distance of 85 miles (137 km) and 44 miles (71 km)as well as the summer mountain bike marathon on the Otepää-Elva ski route.
Laulupeo puiestee, 25, Tartu
Tel .: (372) 742-16-44

Estonian Cycling Federation
Pirita tee, 12, Tallinn
Tel .: (372) 603-15-45



Estonia, with its Baltic coasts and a huge number of rivers, ponds, lakes and streams, offers almost limitless opportunities for sport fishing in all sorts of conditions. You can fish anywhere and without permission for a simple fishing rod with one hook, sinker and float, provided that the length of the fishing line exceeds the length of the fishing rod by no more than one and a half times. Fishing with spinning requires a temporary permit. The cost of such a permit is the same throughout Estonia, and it can be purchased at any branch of the Ministry of the Environment.


Golf is becoming increasingly popular in Estonia. Currently, the country has at least nine fields for 18 holes, including in Saaremaa ( and in Otepää (

Estonian golf club Manniva (24 km from the center of Tallinn) located in a picturesque location next to oak groves, prehistoric ruins, ancient stone walls and numerous ponds. One of its main features is a 40-meter height difference on the route, complicating the task for the players.

Estonian Golf and Country Club
Joeldhtme, Manniva village
Tel .: (372) 666-21-21

Estonian Golf Association
Liivalaia, 9, Tallinn
Tel .: (372) 630-30-80


Estonian State Forest Management Center (RMK) supervises the network of tourist forest trails and recreation areas with campsites, forest huts, fireplaces and picnic areas in the ten most beautiful regions of Estonia.

State Forest Management Center
Tel .: (372) 676-75-10

Horseback riding


Horseback riding is a pleasant way of exploring Estonian beauties. Several equestrian centers and tourist farms offer rides on ponies and horses, summer wheelchair rides and winter rides on sledges.

North Estonia

Kivisaare ratsatalu
Jarve, 10, Aegviidu, Harju
Tel .: (372) 566-31-520
Rebala Tallid Rebala, Joeldhtme, Harju
Tel .: (372) 529-77-60

Saue Riding Club
Parnasalu, 38, Saue, Harju
Tel .: (372) 679-08-88

Veskimetsa Riding Center
Paldiski, 135, Tallinn
Tel .: (372) 656-39-04

South Estonia
Horse riding

Sammuli stables
Vardja Viiratsi vald, Viljandi
Tel .: (372) 526-91-00

Timmo stables
Mammaste Polva vald, Polva
Tel .: (372) 799-85-30

Western Estonia

Seeba Holiday Houses
Kassari Kaina vald, Hiiumaa
Tel .: (372) 508-36-42


This unique Estonian sport has grown from ancient roots. Kiking (swinging) performed on a swing for adults; the goal is to make a full 360 ° turn. For this you need to have considerable strength and strong nerves.


The list of records is based on amplitude. The last world record recorded in the Guinness Book of Records, set by Estonian Andrus Asamäe and is 7.2 m.

Kiikking is a modern version of old-fashioned Estonian fun; Swing rides have a very strong tradition in national culture. Almost every village has large wooden swing platforms, which are used during summer song festivals, can accommodate several adults.

Kiikking as a sport appeared in Pärnu in 1997 and since then it has been of increasing interest among Estonians and foreign enthusiasts.

Modern Kiyk (kiik) - A high-tech device with seat belts for wrists and ankles, so that the athlete maintains a vertical position on the swing even at the highest point of the trajectory. The amplitude can be increased if desired.

Estonian Kiiking Federation
Maepealse tee, 9, Metsakasti, Viimsi vald
Tel .: (372) 505-56-37


Estonian harbors are well protected and provide favorable conditions for sailing from May to September. But yachting is still a new sport here, since under Soviet rule access to the sea was practically closed.


The non-governmental organization “For the Purity of the Estonian Sea” maintains a database of harbors for sailing ships, from relatively well-equipped berths in Pirit and Pärnu that meet EU standards, to half-abandoned ports that offer virtually no services.

NGO "For the Purity of the Estonian Sea"
Pirita tee, 17, Tallinn
Tel .: (372) 5302-72-37

Estonian Yachting Federation
1-6K, Regati pst 1-6K, Tallinn
Tel .: (372) 639-89-60

Swimming pools

Several Tallinn hotels, including Oliimpia and Pirita, have swimming pools open for guests and club members. The Viimsi Tervis Spa in the suburbs of Tallinn has a 25-meter multi-lane swimming pool, a separate children's pool and a whirlpool ride open for day visitors. Ranveere tee, 11, Viimsi. Tel: (372) 606-10-00. Open: daily 7 am - 11 pm. Paid entrance.

Aura Center’s Tartu has a 50-meter pool and a 25-meter beginner’s pool.
Turn, 10
Tel .: (372) 730-02-80
Open: daily 7 am - 11 pm



Tennis Club Rocca al Mara in western Tallinn has 16 tennis courts and 4 badminton courts, as well as halls and fitness equipment for fitness and aerobics.
Haabersti, 5, Tallinn
Tel .: (372) 660-05-40
Open: daily 7 am - 10.30 pm

Estonian Tennis Federation
Marsi, 4, Tallinn
Tel .: (372) 639-86-35

Water sports


Several recreation centers offer water sports such as sailing, surfing and water skiing in the Baltic and inland waters. Pärnu is the main water sports center in Estonia.

Sun & fun
This weekend sports center offers activities such as sailing and motorboat rides, water skiing or surfboarding and sea cruises with visits to coastal islands.
Kooli, 32, Parnu
Tel .: (372) 501-26-21

Winter sports


Located in a low-lying area, Estonia is great for cross-country skiing. (known here as loppet).

Tartu is the main winter sports center, with a permanent ski route between Otepää and Elva. The annual "Tartu Marathon" is the largest and most popular sporting event in Estonia under the auspices of Klubi Tartu Maraton (MTU)who also conducts marathon races in the summer.
Tartu Marathon Club (MTU)
Laulupeo pst, 25, Tartu
Tel .: (372) 742-16-44

Food and Drink

Estonian cooking is not very popular in the world, and visiting restaurants is not a national tradition, but food and drinks play a significant role in many folk festivals. Estonia is a small country.Its climatic and geographical conditions limit the diversity of farm products, which is reflected in the assortment of dishes.

After independence, the choice of cafes and restaurants has become much more, especially in Tallinn. There were a variety of ethnic restaurants that complement the local cuisine. It is not surprising that the national cuisines of the countries of Eastern Europe and the former Soviet republics are also widely represented in Estonia. Almost all bars and restaurants staff speak English (and often in German), although in small cities and towns it happens less often. The prices of dishes, both with alcoholic drinks, and without them, vary from very low (significantly below the European average) in small simple restaurants to very high in chic hotel restaurants and other trendy places, favored by local nouveau riche.

Lamb Cutlet with Potato Buns

Value Added Tax (now it is 18%) automatically included in the bill, but there is no charge for services. Many waiters get a significant portion of their income from customer bounty, so tips (10%) always welcome. Tips are not required in bars, restaurants and self-service cafes. Outside of Tallinn, the choice of places to eat is less varied and the menu becomes much more modest, limited mainly to pork, sausages, potatoes and cabbage.

Recommendations and restaurant ratings can be found in the invaluable local Tallinn in Your Pocket directory, which is sold to travel agencies and hotels and is published every two months. Also visit for the latest news.

Types of restaurants


American-style restaurants in Tallinn offer steaks, burgers, Tex-Mex, and beer in familiar surroundings and at moderate prices.

Street cafe in Tallinn

There are a lot of Chinese, Indian, Japanese and Korean restaurants in Tallinn. Chinese restaurants can be found in small towns.

Buffet restaurants

Self-service cafes and stand-up restaurants in Tallinn and other places help to save time and are ideal for tourists who are always in a hurry somewhere.


People from the southern republics of the former USSR brought Armenian, Georgian and Azerbaijani cuisines to Estonia, which still enjoy success here. They offer mostly fried meat dishes, kebabs and desserts.

Estonian restaurant in Tallinn

Estonian restaurants range from cheap, with a friendly atmosphere to expensive and pretentious ones. The best of them offer an interesting menu with an emphasis on game dishes and hearty national snacks.


There are French, German, Spanish, Greek and Italian restaurants in Tallinn, and Italian-style pizzerias can be found in most cities in Estonia.


All major hotels have restaurants. (open not only for guests, but for everyone) with an international selection of dishes. Prices range from reasonable to exorbitant.

Theme Restaurants

Tallinn has a number of cafes and restaurants dedicated to various topics, from the Middle Ages to the rock and roll legends.

What to eat

Estonian cuisine

Estonian home cooking absorbed Scandinavian, German and Russian influences. Most of the rich peasant dishes are associated with such a feature of the local rural life as hard physical labor in a cold climate: the food here is very high in calories. Preference is given to pork, ham, sausages, poultry, as well as potatoes and other root crops, thick cream, butter and black rye bread.

Despite Estonia’s seaside location, seafood has not become a major part of the local diet, although salted and smoked herring is popular as a snack. Freshwater fish from numerous rivers and lakes are usually served fried in a griddle.

Main dishes are always accompanied by boiled potatoes, usually with sour cream and often with pickled gherkins, carrots, cauliflower or mushrooms.

Warm sprat-potato salad

Estonians are sugary for sweets, so hearty and sweet pudding is often served in a cafe as an independent dish.

Other favorite snacks include pancakes with a sweet or spicy filling, as well as various muffins, buns and pastries.

In the best Estonian restaurants, the menu will almost certainly include some of the following national dishes.

Estonians are sugary for sweets, so hearty and sweet pudding is often served in a cafe as an independent dish.

Other favorite snacks include pancakes with a sweet or spicy filling, as well as various muffins, buns and pastries.

Chocolate cake with ice cream

In the best Estonian restaurants, the menu will almost certainly include some of the following national dishes.

First meal
  • Keel hernestega: cold boiled tongue with horseradish
  • Marineeritud angerjas: pickled eel
  • Raim: salted herring
  • Stilt: jelly slices of pork
  • Voorst: Homemade Sausage Slices
Fish dishes
  • Ahven: Grouper
  • Forell: Trout
  • Haug: pike
Main dishes
  • Karbonaad: pork chops Mulgikapsad: stewed pork with sauerkraut
  • Silgusoust: sprats with bacon in sour cream
  • Verivorst: Black pork blood and sausage-shaped barley pudding traditionally served for Christmas with red currant jelly
Dumplings in a pot
  • Kama: sweetened porridge made from rye, oatmeal, barley and pea flour
  • Karask: barley bread with raisins and other dried fruits
  • Mannapuder: semolina pudding
  • Kook: cake
  • Kringel: sweet fruit bun Pankoogid: pancakes
  • Sai: bun or cupcake
  • Pelmenid: dumplings with meat or vegetable filling
  • Piruka: dumplings with cabbage or pork
Food for Vegetarians

Vegans will have problems choosing foods in most Estonian restaurants. Even those who include fish and eggs in their diets may find that their choices are extremely limited. Salads often put pieces of cold meat or sausages, and soups are almost always cooked in meat broth. Even in cosmopolitan Tallinn, there are no purely vegetarian restaurants, so ethnic Asian restaurants will be the best choice for those who do not eat meat.

What to drink

Alcoholic drinks
Saku originaal

Estonians love beer, and the country produces a number of decent varieties of this drink, including the most common Saku Originaal.

Imported beers from Europe and America are also sold in bottles and in bottling. Vodka (yiin) very popular; they are usually drunk heavily chilled and undiluted and washed down with beer. The most famous varieties of vodka are Viru Valge and Saaremaa; There are also Turi, Crystal, Laua and Y2K. Estonia produces thick sweet liquor Vana Tallinn. Red, white and sparkling wines are brought from the main wine-making countries of Europe. Spirits, including whiskey and brandy, are also imported in sufficient quantities.

Soft drinks

Traditional Estonian soft drink called Kali (kali). It is slightly carbonated, with a yeast flavor, and resembles unburned beer. Locals jokingly call it "Estonian Coca-Cola." Mineral water is cheap, available everywhere and much better than tap water, safe, but heavily chlorinated. Carbonated drinks, including cola varieties, are sold everywhere. Estonians are addicted to caffeinated drinks such as Red Bull and Irn Bra; young people often mix them with vodka for greater efficiency.

In a coffee shop
Tea and coffee

Tea and coffee (kohv) drink at any time of the day and usually served without milk. Instant coffee is more common than espresso or cappuccino. If you want coffee with cream, ask for kohv koorega.


Estonia is a tourist destination that is rapidly gaining popularity both among Europeans as a whole and among Russian tourists. In this connection, old Estonian hotels are being reconstructed and new ones are constantly being built. Their variety is amazing: from mini-hotels to luxury five-star chain hotels.Newly built hotels, as a rule, are very comfortable, with ample opportunities for a cozy holiday.

Business trips

Hotel Tallink

In Estonian business circles, almost everyone speaks English, and also speaks German, Swedish and Finnish. Russian is rarely used in business negotiations.

Business centers operating at all major hotels in Tallinn offer secretarial and translation services, photocopying, Internet access and e-mail, personal computers and other services.

Bank accounts

Estonian banks are modern, reliable and provide good quality service. Many large European and international banking institutions have branches in Estonia and own most of the country's banking system.

Buildings SEB Bank in Tallinn

Narva maantee, 4, Tallinn
Tel .: (372) 669-09-90


Work schedule


Mon-Fri 10.00-16.00. Government and other institutions
Mon-Fri 9.00-17.00. Business visas

Business visas are not required for citizens of the UK, Ireland and other EU countries, as well as citizens of the United States, Canada, Australia and New Zealand.

Capital investment

Foreign investments are welcome, and the procedures have become even easier after the harmonization of the Estonian legal system with EU norms. Investments and income derived from them can be repatriated at any time. Estonia is actively seeking investors abroad through the Estonian Investment Agency (

Chambers of Commerce

View of Tallinn from the Town Hall

American Chamber of Commerce
Harju, 6, Tallinn
Tel .: (372) 631-05-22

British-Estonian Chamber of Commerce
Dunkri, 4, Tallinn
Tel .: (372) 566-66-23

Estonian Chamber of Commerce
Toom-Kooli, 17, Tallinn
Tel .: (372) 646-02-44

Conference rooms
Estonian National Library (Conference Center)
Tonismdgi, 2, Tallinn
Tel .: (372) 630-72-62

Convention Center Oltimpia
Reval Hotel Oliimpia, Liivalaia, 33, Tallinn
Tel .: (372) 631-53-34

Radisson Blu Hotel Tallinn
Ravala, 3
Tel .: (372) 682-30-00


During the period of instability, which began immediately after independence, Estonia suffered from a number of dubious financial transactions. However, since then it has made more progress than all other former Soviet republics in eradicating the shadow business at the official level and in the private sector of the economy.



The Estonian way of doing business is simple: Estonians prefer to go straight to the heart of the matter under discussion. Business meetings are often scheduled during off-hours to save time. In the Estonian business, the vast majority are still men. Gifts and entertainment are not provided for in Estonian business etiquette.

Government contracts

All government offices are located in Tallinn. Contracts are concluded as a result of public tenders; It is recommended to have knowledgeable local representatives.


Translation and simultaneous translation can be ordered at: A & A Lingua. Kreutzwaldi, 12, Tallinn. Tel: (372) 683-03-21.

Law Offices

The Estonian legal system is based on the civil law of continental Europe and is very similar to the German legal system.

Hedman partners
Rotermanni, 8, Tallinn
Tel .: (372) 664-52-50

Hough, Hubner, Hutt and Partners
Vim, 5, Tallinn
Tel .: (372) 644-62-27

Morning in the field

The property

After Estonia gained independence, Tallinn experienced a real boom in the real estate market, and now investors have little chance of getting a lucrative offer. Those who plan to invest in real estate will have to rely on Estonian lawyers.

Brokers in the real estate market:

Ober-Haus Real Estate
Narva maantee, 53, Tallinn
Tel .: (372) 665-97-00

Residence and work permit

Streets in old Tallinn

EU citizens can live and work in Estonia without a residence permit and work permit for three months. Citizens of other countries looking for work in Estonia must obtain a special permit.


Estonia has concluded double tax treaties with 29 countries, including EU countries. Companies are subject to corporate income tax.The value added tax (VAT) is 20%, and any company with a turnover of more than 250,000 Estonian kroons is obliged to include it in the cost of goods and services. Export is not subject to VAT. Land tax ranges from 0.1 to 2.5%. Inheritance tax in Estonia is absent.


Entry formalities

Visas are not required for British, Irish and other EU citizens. Passport holders from the USA, Canada, Australia and New Zealand do not need visas if they come for a period of up to three months. Citizens of Russia need a visa. Guests of the country must confirm the availability of funds sufficient to stay in Estonia during the stated period, at the rate of 320 EEK per person per day.

Customs regulations

Kuressaare city

Visitors from other EU countries may (in theory) import unlimited amount of alcohol, tobacco and other goods for personal use. The general rules are: 90 liters of wine, 110 liters of beer, 10 liters of spirits (above 21% alcohol), 800 cigarettes, 400 cigarillos, 200 cigars or 1 kg of tobacco.

Restrictions for arriving from outside the EU are 2 liters of wine, 3 liters of spirits, 200 cigarettes or 100 cigarillos, 50 cigars or 250 grams of tobacco.

Those who enter or leave the country with cash in excess of EUR 15,000 must declare the amount in the customs declaration.

By air

Tallinn International Airport is Estonia’s main airport, located less than 5 km from the city center. It is compact and modern, with currency exchange points, an automatic help system. (ATM) and car rental offices on the ground floor.

A taxi ride to the city center takes no more than five minutes, but Tallinn taxi drivers greatly inflate prices, so it is better to coordinate all financial issues before leaving.

Bus number 2 departs from the arrival hall every half hour and after 10 minutes arrives at the Vim Hotel in the city center. Tickets cost 20 Estonian kroons and are purchased from the driver.

Tallinn International Airport
Lennujaama, 2. Tel .: (372) 605-88-88

Taxi at the airport

Estonian Air
Lennujaama tee, 1
Tel .: (372) 640-11-63 (customer service)
Ticket office: tel .: (372) 640-11-61

Avies Airlines
Tel .: (372) 605-80-22
The company serves international flights and also operates flights to St. Petersburg.

By sea

Ferries and high-speed hydrofoil vessels often and regularly arrive in Tallinn from Helsinki (3-4 hours by ferry, about 90 minutes on a hydrofoil ship and less than 2 hours on a high-speed catamaran)as well as from Stockholm. Tallink also communicates between Nynashamn (near Stockholm) and paldiski. Ferry companies:

Eckero line
Tel .: (372) 664-60-00

Linda line
Tel: (372) 699-93-33

Tel .: (372) 640-98-08

Viking line
Tel .: (372) 666-39-66

Tallinn passenger port has four terminals, luggage storage, tourist information point (in the main hall of terminal A), currency exchange and automatic help system (ATM).

Cruise liner in the Gulf of Finland

The passenger port is less than 1.5 km from the city center.
Sadama, 25
Tel .: (372) 631-85-50
Open: daily 7 am - 11 pm

Hydrofoils arrive at Lynnakhall harbor.
Mere pst, 20
Tel: (372) 699-93-33

Shipping company "Saaremaa" connects Kuressaare and Ventspils in Latvia, as well as the city of Kotka in Finland with Sillamäe.
Tel .: (372) 452-43-50

By rail

The only direct rail link between Tallinn and Moscow is provided by the Estonian company GoRail ( Travel time is about 15 hours. A visa is required.

Train in Estonia

A fast corporate train departs daily from Moscow to Tallinn.

The trip from Tallinn to St. Petersburg will take about 10 hours; At least two trains depart for Russia daily.

The Baltic Station in Tallinn is only 200 meters from the center of the Old Town and is equipped with modern amenities, including a good restaurant, luggage storage and a help system. Trams number 1 and 2 are sent to the city center from the bus stop behind the station.

Tallinn Baltic Station, Toompuiestee, 37
Tel: (372) 615-68-51 or 615-14-47

By bus

Bus routes from Scandinavia, Europe and Russia are the cheapest way to get to Estonia, but the bus ride can be long and uncomfortable, and places need to be booked for several weeks or even months.

Bus in Tallinn

Buses from the west follow via Vilnius and Riga and arrive at the Tallinn bus station about 1.6 km south of the city center; some stop near the hotel "Vira" and the shopping center in the center of Tallinn. From the bus station to the city center there are buses number 17 and 23 and trams number 2 and 4.

Central Bus Station
Lastedoku, 46
Information about regional bus routes: Tel .: (372) 680-09-00 or 680-09-09

By car

EU citizens must have a new European driver's license; others need international driving license. Everyone who enters Estonia on their own vehicles must have valid registration documents and valid, internationally recognized insurance, such as a Green Card. Check with your insurance company before leaving.


The crime rate in Tallinn is not higher than in most European capitals, but tourists are often victims of petty theft. Be careful and avoid unfamiliar places in the city at night.

Constantly watch out for valuable things. Do not leave money and documents in the hotel room: take as much money as you need for the day, and put the rest to the safe in the hotel safe. Thefts from cars are widespread, and thieves look out for cars with foreign license plates and rented. Do not leave valuables in the car.

A crime can be reported to the Tallinn Central Police Station. (Lootsi, 15; tel .: (372) 612-42-10; in case of emergency call tel. 110).

Taxis overcharging (sometimes using counter manipulations) - The most common complaint of foreign tourists.

Car driving

Car rent

Most large international car rental companies have their branches in Tallinn. Prices can be 50% higher than the European average, and almost twice as high as in the USA. The driver must be over 21 years old and have a valid driver's license of his country. Right-hand traffic. When driving on highways, the lights should be turned on even during the day.

Drunk driving is prohibited and prosecuted. The minimum allowable blood alcohol content is 0.002%, that is, it is practically zero.

Extraordinary circumstances

In Estonia there is no association of motorists or car enthusiasts. In case of emergency, call the police on the general telephone 110 or 02.


Tourists arriving in Estonia must have a personal insurance policy purchased from travel agents, tour operators or from an insurance company. Insurance must cover medical expenses. (including transportation in case of emergency), theft or loss of property, as well as delayed or canceled scheduled flights.

In tartu

Responsibility for traffic accidents is usually not included in personal insurance. This item must be listed in car insurance. (if you arrive by own transport) or in the insurance policy offered at the car rental office.

Insurance for motorists who come by car should cover the theft and other damage incurred in Estonia and other points of the route, and must be supplemented with a Green Card certificate from the insurer.

If you rent a car, it is recommended to purchase so-called "collision insurance" for an additional fee. (CDW). Most CDW policies include a clause on the insurer's liability limits, that is, the driver is held liable for damage not exceeding a specific limit. Many international car rental companies offer additional liability insurance.

You must personally verify all the details listed in the insurance policy and make sure that the insurance amount fully covers the possible costs.



Leaded, unleaded and diesel fuel is sold at gas stations throughout the country. Prices on average correspond to European ones. Rented cars are fueled with unleaded gasoline only. At gas stations in rural areas often prefer cash instead of a credit card. Estonia is a small country, the distances here are small, so the driver practically does not risk staying with an empty tank.


Estonian roads are relatively good, but most of them have only two lanes; pavement in rural areas can be potholed and potholed. Snow, icing and early darkness make winter driving risky.

Speed ​​limits

In urban and rural areas, the maximum speed is 50 km / h, on highways - 110 km / h.


The voltage in the mains 220V, current frequency 50Hz. Standard European plugs and sockets are used, but in some old buildings the Soviet standard is still maintained. Those who plan to stay in old hotels, rural guesthouses or private houses should have spare batteries for mobile phones or cameras, fully charged in advance, because adapters for Soviet outlets can be difficult to find.


Phone booth
  • Ambulance 112
  • Fire brigade 112
  • Police 110
  • Help desk 11-82 or 11-88
  • Information about long-distance calls 11-88
  • Telephone operator 16-115
  • Call with payment by the called subscriber 16-116

In public telephone booths, telephone cards are used, which are sold at street kiosks and hotels and cost 30, 50 or 100 kroons. City codes were abolished in 2004. To call any number in Estonia from abroad, dial (00-372).

To call abroad from Estonia, dial 00 and the code of the called country (Russia 00-7).


Street artist

In Estonia, compulsory vaccination is not required, and a trip to this country does not pose particular health threats. Tap water can be drunk, but in older homes water pipes sometimes give it a yellowish tint. Estonia has mutual health protection agreements with Britain, Ireland and other EU countries, which provide citizens of these countries with a minimum level of public health care.

Public hospitals are poorly equipped, so visitors must have personal health insurance covering possible costs, including medical supervision and transportation to the country of the insured in case of emergency.

Estonia has made great progress in the fight against environmental pollution, but a fairly large amount of standing water still falls into the Baltic. Tourists should listen to the advice of local residents before visiting the sea near the cities and towns.

mass media

English-language newspapers, including the International Herald Tribune and USA Today, and most British national newspapers are sold in Tallinn on the day of publication or the next day.

Leading news magazines, such as Time, Newsweek and The Economist, as well as many entertaining and themed English-language magazines are widely available immediately after publication. Outside the capital, foreign publications are less common.

Morning fog on the track

Estonia and its Baltic neighbors publish their own English-language press. Newspaper Baltic Paper (see also dedicated to events in Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia. Useful magazine Tallinn in Your Pocket ( contains detailed information about current events and entertainment, also has its own website.

Most hotels above the level of three stars have satellite television, which provides access to English-language channels, such as CNN, BBC World, MTV, etc.

Internet is easily accessible: Internet cafes and Internet centers are available in Tallinn and in all regional cities.Broadband connectivity is widespread in the capital; in other places, the data rate may be much lower.


From January 1, 2011, the official currency of Estonia is the euro. Initially, the introduction of the euro was planned for 2007, but it was postponed because the inflation rate did not meet the Maastricht criteria.

Owners of credit and debit cards of well-known companies can easily withdraw cash at ATMs installed in Tallinn and provincial cities. Most hotels, restaurants and major stores accept credit cards VISA and MasterCard. American Express and Diners Club cards are accepted less frequently. Banks issue cash advances on credit cards for 1% of the value of the loan. Thomas Cook and American Express traveler checks denominated in euros, dollars and pounds sterling can be exchanged for cash at most banks. Australian, Canadian and New Zealand dollars, as well as South African rands, are far from being exchanged everywhere.

Krediidipank branches and main post offices also work with Western Union money transfers.


Estonian belongs to the Finno-Ugric group. It is closely related to the Finnish language and is more distantly related to Hungarian. Latin letters are used with various diacritical marks indicating the particular pronunciation of certain vowels.

Opening hours

Mon-Fri 9.00-16.00.

Government offices and offices
Mon-Fri 9.00-17.00.

Hours of operation vary widely.

The shops
Mon-Fri 10.00-18.00, Sat 10.00-17.00.

Organized tours

Pharmacy in Nomme

There are several travel companies in Estonia. Most of them are in Tallinn. Among them, "Travel to Baltics", offering sightseeing tours of Tallinn, bus tours, accompanied by guides, as well as accommodation in hotels in Estonia. Tel: (372) 610-86-16.


Estonian pharmacists are highly qualified, and pharmacies have all the necessary medicines, most of which can be obtained without a prescription. Typically, pharmacies operate on a schedule: Mon-Fri 10.00-18.00, Sat 10.00 ~ 17.00. There is a round-the-clock pharmacy in Tallinn (Linnaapteek; tel .: (372) 644-02-44).


Estonian police

There is no special tourist police in Estonia, and not all officers speak English, but, as a rule, they operate effectively and are ready to help foreigners. In case of theft or car accident, filling in documents can take a long time.

Post offices

The Central Post Office in Tallinn is located at: Narva maantee, 1. Tel .: (372) 661-66-16. Open: Fri 7.30-20.00 and Sat 9.00-18.00.

Other post offices are usually open: working days 9.00-18.00 and Sat 9.30-15.00. Letters sent to the Baltic countries and Scandinavia reach their addressees within 1-3 days; to other places during the week.

Public transport


There are regular flights between Tallinn and the islands of Hiiumaa and Saaremaa. Tartu also has an international airport, but it is little used.


A bus route system connects Tallinn with provincial cities; buses belong to private bus companies competing with each other. Intercity express buses are more comfortable than local bus lines. Tickets should be bought at the bus station at least 2 hours before departure.
Express Hotline, tel .: 11-82.


Tram in Tallinn

The Estonian rail system covers all major cities and many villages. Most trains are equipped with single-class seats, but trains to Tartu and Valga have second-class seats. Moscow Express plying between Tallinn and Moscow (travel time is approximately 16 hours) equipped with a sleeping coupe first class.


Tallinn taxi drivers are notorious because they inflate prices for both Estonians and foreign guests. Always negotiate an approximate price before boarding. Under no circumstances get in a taxi with unfamiliar passengers.


The ferry service connects Estonian islands with continental ports, including Pirita, Paldiski, Haapsalu and Pärnu.

Student and youth tourism

Holders of internationally recognized ISIC student cards are eligible for discounts on public transport, as well as in some restaurants and youth hostels.A valid student card or ID card usually entitles you to discounts on visits to museums and other attractions.

Winter in the forest Velotaksi in Tallinn


Time in Estonia is 1 hour behind Moscow time.


In restaurants, it will be enough to leave a 10% tip. Porters in hotels and taxi drivers will also be pleased with your generosity. In bars and self-service cafes leave a tip is not accepted.

Tourist information

Most tourist offices offer accommodation services for foreign guests, and everywhere there are prudent and polite staff who speak good English.

In particular, in Tallinn tourist offices are located at: Old Town, st. Niguliste, 21. Tel. (372) 645-77-77. Viru Center, Viru valjak, 4. Tel .: (372) 610-15-57. Tallinn Harbor Terminal A, Sadama, 25. Tel. (372) 631-83-21.

There are similar tourist centers in Narva, Otepää, Paide, Pärnu, Tartu, Valga and other major Estonian cities.

Estonia Tourism Committee "Visit Estonia" does not have its own offices abroad. Useful information is available on the committee website

Russian Embassy in Estonia
10133, Tallinn, ul. Pick, 19
Tel .: (8-10-372) 646-41-75, 646-41-69
Fax: (8-10-372) 646-41-78

Consulate in Tallinn
10133, Tallinn, ul. Lai, 18
Tel .: (8-10-372) 646-41-66
Fax: (8-10-372) 646-41-30

Consulate General in Narva
20307, ​​Narva, Kiriku, 8
Tel .: (8-10-372-35) 60-652
Fax: (8-10-372-35) 60-654

Information for disabled

In Estonia, a limited set of amenities is still available for disabled tourists, but it is gradually expanding.

New hotels have large enough wheelchair lifts; sometimes en suite rooms for partially paralyzed people. New cafes and restaurants are equipped with wheelchair access toilets.

Additional information (in English) for people with disabilities, including people with impaired hearing and vision, can be found on the website of the Estonian Chamber of Commerce and Disabilities:

Low Price Calendar

Baltic Sea

Attraction applies to countries: Russia, Germany, Denmark, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Finland, Sweden, Estonia

Baltic Sea (since antiquity and until the 18th century in Russia it was known as the "Varangian Sea") - inland submarine sea, deeply protruding into the mainland. The Baltic Sea is located in northern Europe, belongs to the Atlantic Ocean basin.

general information

The Baltic Sea is connected to the North Sea by the Öresund Straits (Zund)Belta, Kattegat and Skagerrak, large and small. It washes the shores of Russia, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Germany, Denmark, Sweden, Finland.

The maritime boundary of the Baltic Sea passes through the southern entrances of the Öresund Straits, the large and small Belts. The area of ​​386 thousand km ². The average depth is 71 m. The shores of the Baltic Sea in the south and southeast. mostly low, sandy, lagoon type; from the land side - dunes covered with forest, from the sea - sandy and pebble beaches. In the north, the coast is high, rocky, mostly of the skerry type. The coastline is heavily indented, forms numerous bays and coves.

The largest bays: the Bothnia (according to physiographic conditions it is the sea), Finnish, Riga, Curonian, Gdansk Bay, Szczecin, etc.

The islands of the Baltic Sea are of continental origin. There are many small rocky islands - skerries located along the northern shores and concentrated in groups of the Vasya and Aland islands. The largest islands are Gotland, Bornholm, Sarem, Muhu, Hium, Öland, Rügen, etc. A large number of rivers flow into the Baltic Sea, the largest of which are the Neva, Zapadnaya Dvina, Neman, Vistula, Odra, etc.

The Baltic Sea is a shallow shelf sea. Depths of 40-100 m prevail. The most shallow areas are the Kattegat straits. (average depth 28 m), Oresund, large and small Belts, eastern parts of the Gulf of Finland and Bothnia and the Gulf of Riga. These sections of the sea bottom have a leveled accumulative relief and a well-developed cover of loose sediments. Most of the bottom of the Baltic Sea is characterized by a strongly dissected relief, there are relatively deep basins: Gotland (249 m), Bornholm (96 m)in Sodra-Quarken Strait (244 m) and the deepest - Landsortsjupp south of Stockholm (459 m). There are numerous stone ridges, in the central part of the sea, ledges are traced - continuations of the Cambrian-Ordovician (from the northern coast of Estonia to the northern tip of Öland) and Silurian cliffs, underwater valleys, sea-flooded glacial-accumulative landforms.

The Baltic Sea occupies a depression of tectonic origin, which is a structural element of the Baltic Shield and its slope. According to modern concepts, the main irregularities of the sea bottom are caused by block tectonics and structural-denudation processes. The latter, in particular, owe their origin to underwater cliffs. The northern part of the seabed is composed mainly of Precambrian rocks, covered by a discontinuous cover of glacial and newest marine sediments.

In the central part of the sea, the bottom is composed of Silurian and Devonian rocks hiding to the south under a layer of glacial and marine sediments of considerable thickness.

The presence of submarine river valleys and the absence of marine sediments under the thickness of glacial deposits indicate that in the pre-glacial time land was located at the site of the Baltic Sea. During at least the last glacial epoch, the basin of the Baltic Sea was completely occupied by ice. Only about 13 thousand years ago there was a connection with the ocean, and the sea waters filled the hollow; the Yoldian Sea was formed (by clam Joldia). Phase of the Yoldian Sea somewhat earlier (15 thousand years ago) preceded by a phase of the Baltic glacier lake, not yet communicating with the sea. About 9-7.5 thousand years ago, as a result of a tectonic uplift in central Sweden, the connection between the Yoldia Sea and the ocean ceased, and the Baltic Sea again became a lake. This phase of the Baltic Sea’s development is known as Lake Antsilovoy. (according to Ancylus mollusk). A new subsidence of land in the area of ​​modern Danish straits, which occurred about 7-7.5 thousand years ago, and an extensive transgression led to a resumption of communication with the ocean and the formation of the Litorina Sea. The level of the last sea was several meters higher than the present, and the salinity was higher. Deposits of the litorinic transgression are widely known on the modern Baltic coast. The century-long uplift in the northern part of the Baltic Sea basin continues even now, reaching 1 m in a hundred years in the north of the Gulf of Bothnia and gradually decreasing to the south.

The climate of the Baltic Sea is temperate marine, strongly influenced by the Atlantic Ocean. It is characterized by relatively small annual fluctuations in temperature, frequent precipitation, fairly evenly distributed throughout the year, and fog in the cold and transitional seasons. During the year, winds of the western directions prevail, which are associated with cyclones coming from the Atlantic Ocean. Cyclonic activity reaches its highest intensity in the autumn-winter months. At this time, cyclones are accompanied by strong winds, frequent storms and cause large rises in the water level off the coast. In the summer months, cyclones weaken and their frequency decreases. The invasion of anticyclones is accompanied by east winds.

The length of the Baltic Sea at 12 ° along the meridian determines the noticeable differences in the climatic conditions of its individual regions. The average air temperature in the southern part of the Baltic Sea: in January -1.1 ° С, in July 17.5 ° C; middle part: in January -2.3 ° С, July 16.5 ° C; Gulf of Finland: in January -5 ° С, in July 17 ° C; northern part of the Gulf of Bothnia: in January -10.3 ° C, in July 15.6 ° C. Clouds in the summer about 60%, in the winter more than 80%. The average annual precipitation in the north is about 500 mm, in the south it is more than 600 mm, and in some areas up to 1000 mm. The greatest number of foggy days falls on the southern and middle part of the Baltic Sea, where it averages up to 59 days a year, the smallest in the north. Gulf of Bothnia (up to 22 days a year).

The hydrological conditions of the Baltic Sea are mainly determined by its climate, excess fresh water and water exchange with the North Sea.An excess of fresh water, equal to 472 km3 per year, is formed at the expense of the continental runoff. Amount of water entering the sediments (172.0 km³ per year)equals evaporation. Water exchange with the North Sea averages 1,659 km3 per year (salt water 1187 km³ per year, fresh water - 472 km³ per year). Freshwater flows from the Baltic Sea to the North Sea through the flow of water, while salty water flows through the straits from the North Sea to the Baltic Sea through a deep current. Strong westerly winds usually cause inflow, and east winds - water flow from the Baltic Sea through all sections of the Öresund Straits, the great and small Belt.

The currents of the Baltic Sea form a counterclockwise rotation. Along the southern coast, the current is directed to the east, along the eastern - to the north, along the western - to the south and along the northern coast - to the west. The speed of these currents ranges from 5 to 20 m / s. Under the influence of winds, the currents can change direction and their speed near the coast can reach 80 cm / sec and more, and in the open part - 30 cm / sec.

The surface water temperature in August in the Gulf of Finland is 15 ° C, 17 ° C; in the Gulf of Bothnia at 9 ° C, 13 ° C and in the central part of the sea 14 ° C, 18 ° C, and in the south it reaches 20 ° C. In February - March, the temperature in the open part of the sea is 1 ° C-3 ° C, in the Bothnian, Finnish, Riga and other bays and bays below 0 ° C. Salinity of surface water decreases rapidly with distance from the straits from 11 to 6-8 (1‰-0,1%) in the central part of the sea. In the Gulf of Bothnia, it is 4-5 -5 (in S. Bay 2 ‰), in the Gulf of Finland 3-6 (at the top of the bay 2 ‰ and less). In the deep and near-bottom layers of water, the temperature is 5 ° С and more, salinity varies from 16 З in the west to 12-13 in the central part and 10 in the north of the sea. During the years of increasing water inflow, salinity rises by 3. to 20, in the central part of the sea to 14-15, and during the years of decreasing inflow, it falls to middle parts of the sea to 11.

Ice usually appears in early November to the north of the Gulf of Bothnia and reaches its greatest distribution in early March. At this time, a significant part of the Gulf of Riga, the Gulf of Bothnia, and the Gulf of Bothnia are covered with fixed ice. The central part of the sea is usually free from ice.

The amount of ice in the Baltic Sea varies from year to year. In extremely harsh winters almost all the sea is covered with ice, in the mild - only bays. The northern part of the Gulf of Bothnia is covered with ice 210 days a year, the middle part - 185 days; Gulf of Riga - 80-90 days, Danish straits - 16-45 days.

The level of the Baltic Sea is subject to fluctuations under the influence of changes in wind direction, atmospheric pressure (progressive-standing long waves, seiches), inflow of river waters and waters of the North Sea. The period of these changes varies from several hours to several days. Rapidly changing cyclones cause fluctuations in the level of up to 0.5 m or more off the coast of the open sea and up to 1.5–3 m in the tops of bays and bays. Especially large water rises, which are usually the result of the imposition of wind surge on the crest of a long wave, are in the Neva Bay. The greatest rise of water in Leningrad was noted in November 1824. (about 410 cm) and in September 1924 (369 cm).

Fluctuations due to tides are extremely small. Tides are irregular, semi-diurnal, irregular diurnal and diurnal. Their size varies from 4 cm (Klaipeda) up to 10 cm (The Gulf of Finland).

The fauna of the Baltic Sea is poor in species, but is quantitatively rich. The Baltic Sea is inhabited by the brackish-water race of the Atlantic herring. (sprat), Baltic sprat, as well as cod, flounder, salmon, eel, smelt, vendace, whitefish, perch. Of the mammals is the Baltic seal. Intensive fishing is conducted in the Baltic Sea.

Russian hydrographic and cartographic work began in the Gulf of Finland at the beginning of the 18th century. In 1738, F. I. Soimonov published an atlas of the Baltic Sea, compiled from Russian and foreign sources. In the middle of the 18th century Long-term studies in the Baltic Sea were conducted by A.I. Nagaev, who compiled a detailed fleet.The first deep-sea hydrological studies in the mid-1880s. were performed by S. O. Makarov. From 1920, hydrological work was carried out by the Hydrographic Department, the State Hydrological Institute, and after the Patriotic War of 1941–45 extensive comprehensive research was conducted under the leadership of the Leningrad branch of the USSR State Oceanographic Institute.

Peipsi Lake

Attraction applies to countries: Russia, Estonia

Peipsi Lake - a large freshwater lake located on the territory of two states at once - Russia and Estonia. Its area is more than 2,600 square meters. km Peipsi Lake is the northern component of the Peipsi-Pskov Lake Complex. The border of Estonia and Russia runs along the water surface approximately in the middle. The nature in the surroundings is unique, the landscape is decorated with deciduous forests and sand dunes covered with pine trees.


The length of the lake is about 96 km, the width is up to 50 km, the average depth is 7.5 meters, the greatest is 16.6 meters. More than 30 rivers and streams with snow, rain and key feeding flow into the lake. Only one border river Narva flows into the Narva Bay of the Gulf of Finland of the Baltic Sea. Salinity of water - 0 ppm. The lake is rich in plankton, and therefore fish.

On the ice of Lake Peipsi on April 5, 1242, the famous Battle of the Ice took place - the battle of Russian troops of Prince Alexander Nevsky against the forces of the Livonian Order. Due to the variability of the hydrographic life of Lake Peipsi, historians have long been unable to pinpoint the place where the battle took place. Only due to the lengthy research conducted by the expedition of the Institute of Archeology of the USSR Academy of Sciences, was the place of the battle established. It is located about 400 meters from Sigovets Cape.

Lake shores

The northern shore of Lake Peipsi consists mostly of a continuous series of dunes extending far inland to the local area; the height of the dunes in some places is up to 8.5 meters, and near the village of Sirenets, located on the left bank of the Narova River, 1.2 kilometers below the source from the lake, the dunes reach a height of 10.5 meters. As they move from the north coast to the west, the dunes gradually decrease and the low-level flat coast is covered with sandy boulders, some of which reach 2.4 meters in length.

At the westernmost recess of the coast, insignificant dunes again appear near the village of Chernoy, and to the south, closer to the village of Koddafer, the coast consists almost entirely of boulders of Finnish granite.

The east coast from Sirenc to Gdov is a low dune, beyond which the terrain gradually rises.

South of Gdov, the shore consists of deluvial clays with sand piles, in some places it rises to 9-12 meters in height, being interrupted by dune formations in the gorges along which rivers and streams flow.

In the south-western corner of the lake is the Raskapel Bay, 20 km long, bounded from the north by spit and the island Borok.

The coasts of the bay in some places represent steep walls of deluvial clays up to 5.4 meters in height, and in some places the coast is low with hills covered with wind of sand.

At Podborovya the shore of Lake Peipsi ends in a steep cape up to 9 meters high.

In the southern part of Lake Peipsi, there is a significant island called Zhelachek or Mezha. The eastern part of this island rises to 4.2 meters and there are villages Pirisaar and Zhelachek. The rest of the island is low-lying, swampy, and the village of Porka, located on the north-west coast, is sometimes flooded.

The West Bank is becoming more uniform, low and meadow, in some places flooded during high water, and low destroyed dunes stretch along its very outskirts.


Due to the presence of lakes, the climate of the region is somewhat similar to the sea and is generally considered to be moderately cold and humid. The average annual temperature ranges from 2 to 4 degrees Celsius, in winter there is not uncommon frost up to 30 degrees, but they quickly give way to thaws.It is characteristic for this area and a large cloudiness, during the year it can be from 170 to 220 days with precipitation, most of them occur in spring and autumn. Lake Peipsi freezes in late November - early December, at the same time snow cover is established. The period of ice drift falls on the end of April - the beginning of May.

In the summer here is the period after the last spring frosts and before the first autumn frosts. Summer temperatures are quite comfortable, in the afternoon the thermometer rarely reaches the 30-degree mark.


The beaches on the lake are sandy, very comfortable. But it should be noted that the most beautiful is on the Estonian coast, this is Kauksi beach, famous not only for its picturesqueness, but also for “singing” sand.

Camp sites

On the shore of the lake are many resorts, camp sites and children's camps. All of them are in steady demand during the summer months: beautiful countryside and a healthy environment are the main reasons. In winter, many of them are closed.

One of the most attractive shelters on the shore of Lake Peipsi is the Peipsi Compound - a recreation center, which includes 47 cottages of four different categories, the Medved restaurant, a sanitary unit, a conference room, and a free guarded parking lot. Each cottage, regardless of the category, has a terrace with a wonderful view of the lake. The cottage village is located directly on the lake, at the entrance to the village of Spitsino, which is 90 km from Pskov.

Entertainment, excursions and attractions of Lake Peipsi

The largest city on the Russian coast is Gdov (of the sights here is the Cathedral of Our Lady of Power and the Gdovskii Kremlin, first mentioned in the chronicles in 1323 and having once important defensive significance). In 71 km from it is located Kobylie Mound, and in it is the famous "crow stone", with him Alexander Nevsky led the Russian troops during the Ice Slaughter. There are, however, other versions of the location of this stone.

There is a museum in the village of Samolva, the exhibits of which tell how the expedition of the USSR Academy of Sciences was looking for the site of the Ice Slaughter. Schemes, maps, scientific reports, arguing the direction of the search, unique photographs are of undoubted interest for anyone interested in the history of Russia.

In the village of Domzhirka, near the lake, you can see the Church of the Holy Trinity, built here in the 15th century, of interest are the Church of Peter and Paul in the village of Vetenik, the Church of the Intercession in the Lake Village and the Church of St. Nicholas in Remde.

Historical reconstruction

For lovers of historical reconstructions, it will be interesting that every year, on the first or second Sunday of April, here is the anniversary of the Ice Battle. By this holiday reenactors from Belarus, Ukraine, Poland and the Baltic republics come to the shore of Lake Peipsi. Show tournaments are held with the most accurate depiction of historical details and make a strong impression on the audience. But even more impressive are the non-stop battles of reenactors, in which they zealously defend the honor of their clubs.

Fishing on Lake Peipsi

The entire lake basin is known for its fisheries, which constitute the main subject of occupation of coastal residents. In the waters of Lake Peipsi, there are approximately 22 species of fish living in the lakes. Especially famous is the Pskov smelt, yellowish in color, making up the most important subject of lake fishing and local export. In addition to smelt, perch, salmon, burbot, bream, roach, ruff and pike are even more known. Fishery is practiced by inhabitants of flat, sandy and marshy shores with sandy knolls on which fishing huts huddle. The main fishery center is the Talab Islands. In winter, the fishermen migrate to the lake itself, transporting light huts built of birch bark onto a fixed ice surface, which, gradually grouping together, constitute a kind of village.

Struve Geodetic Arc

Sight refers to countries: Belarus, Norway, Sweden, Finland, Russia, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Ukraine, Moldova (Moldova)

Arc Struve - a unique monument of science and technology located immediately on the territory of ten European countries. The arc is a chain of old triangulation points stretching for 2,820 km, which makes it the longest monument in the world.

The most southern point of the Struve arc in the village of Staraya Nekrasovka (Odessa region), Ukraine Doug Struve on the modern political map. Red dots indicate preserved items.

An arc oriented from north to south, and following approximately along the 25-degree meridian of eastern longitude, originates from the “Fuglenes Point”, which lies on the coast of the Barents Sea, near the Norwegian city of Hammerfest (70 ° north latitude), then follows to the south - another eight countries of Northern and Eastern Europe (it runs a little east of Helsinki, Tallinn, Riga and Vilnius, and significantly west of Minsk and Kiev, then near Chisinau), and ends near the Black Sea coast, in the extreme south-west of Ukraine, in the region of Ishmael - "Poo CT Staro-Nekrasovka "(45 ° north latitude).


These geodesic observation points were laid in the period 1816-1855. The work was carried out under the guidance of the famous Russian astronomer and geodesist of those times - Friedrich Georg Wilhelm (Vasily Yakovlevich) Struve, 1793-1864, academician of the St. Petersburg Academy of Sciences, founder and first director of the Pulkovo Observatory.

The northernmost point of Dugi Struve, Hammerfest, Norway

Karl Tenner, 1783-1859, was directly involved in field surveys, a military surveyor, a colonel, and later a lieutenant general. Tenner was accompanied by a group of assistants, guides, and soldiers.

Point "Point Z" in Russia, on the island of Gogland

Thus, Struve produced the first reliable measurement of a large segment of the arc of the earth's meridian. This allowed him to accurately determine the size and shape of our planet, which was an important step in the development of the Earth sciences and greatly advanced the entire industry of topographic mapping. According to the results of his research and upon completion of all calculations, Struve wrote a great work - “The arc of the meridian of 25 ° 20 'between the Danube and the Arctic Sea, measured from 1816 to 1855.”

The accuracy of those calculations turned out to be simply amazing - the modern satellite "verification" of the technology used by Struve more than 150 years ago gave a negligible difference. However, at that time it was not only the most accurate, but also the most ambitious degree measurement of the Earth: after all, an enormous segment was covered by latitude — approximately 25 degrees (or 1/14 of the earth's circumference). The results of those measurements for the whole century (before the advent of satellite methods in geodesy, already in the middle of the 20th century) were used to calculate the parameters of the Earth's ellipsoid.

Points of the Struve Arc

Shchekot, Ivanovo district, Belarus

Initially, the "arc" consisted of 258 geodesic "triangles" (polygons) adjacent to each other, and built from north to south into a kind of "chain", with 265 basic triangulation points located at the corners of these "triangles". However, not all of the initial points were discovered during special search and geodetic works undertaken in recent years with the active cooperation of scientists from the countries concerned, and, in addition, many of them were badly damaged. Therefore, only the most well-preserved sites were included in the World Heritage Site — only 34 (including 5 points in Belarus, 4 in Ukraine, 2 in Russia, 1 in Moldova). Both Russian triangulation points are located on the small island of Gogland in the Gulf of Finland - these are “Myakipällus Point” and “Point Z”.

The pivot points of this triangulation network were marked on the ground in a variety of ways, such as recesses hollowed out in the rocks, iron crosses, stone pyramids, or specially installed obelisks.Often such an item was marked with sandstone bricks laid at the bottom of the pit, or it was a granite cube with a lead-filled cavity laid in a pit with cobblestones. Nowadays, this old marking is being updated, special signs are established on the old triangulation points.

The “Struve Arc” is a truly unique element of the World Heritage List: firstly, because it is the only one in all this List that “affects the interests” of so many states (only 10), secondly, because until 2005 there were no objects in the List that were so closely connected with the problems of geodesy and cartography.

Coin "Arc Struve"

On December 29, 2006, the National Bank of the Republic of Belarus issued the "Doug Struve" silver coin. With a nominal value of 20 rubles, it was square in shape and weighed 33.62 g. But it was not at all that it glorified the coin - instead of the actual length of the Arc, it was 2,820 km, it indicated 2,880 km! As soon as an unfortunate misunderstanding was discovered, the coin was immediately withdrawn from circulation, but this only stimulated the interest of the coin collectors. A relatively small circulation (only 5,000 copies) sold instantly. Now a coin with erroneous data is considered a rarity and is sold at auctions for large sums.

Journey to the points of the Arc Struve

Point in the village of Rud, Moldova

Journey through the points of the Struge is well combined with an exciting outdoor recreation. For example, for the night you can stay in a rural manor. And it will be an unforgettable romantic adventure. In the Shchuchin district, in the village of Obrub (not far from the Lopaty geodetic station), you will be welcomed by the hospitable hosts of the Swan Manor. In addition to a cozy room and a delicious dinner, especially for travelers there is a Russian bathhouse on the lake, two pools, billiards and table tennis. Another estate "Winch" is located in the village Degtyary (Shchuchinsky district). Old estates, forests, rivers and lakes surround the estate. Here, in the wild, you can freely meet a beaver or a fox, and spending the night in a real village house will remind you of genuine Belarusian hospitality for a long time.

In Belarus, Dougou was immortalized with several monuments. So, a black stele about 1.5 m high, topped with a 100-pound "earth" globe with a contour of Belarus, speaks about a point near the town of Chekutsk. The line of the Dougie Struve passes through it with the mark “Chakutsk” in Belarusian. Exactly the same stela with the inscriptions "Lyaskovichi" and "Asaunschy" you will find near the villages of the same name. Point geodetic measurements in Chekutsk particularly interesting. It was opened just a few years ago. A cube with a cruciform measuring point, dated 1825, rested in the ground, at a depth of about a meter. By the way, scientists say that, despite the temporary changes in the terrain, the difference between the modern and ancient measurements of the meridian was less than 3.5 cm.

Kehra City

Kehra - a city in northern Estonia in the county of Harju. It is part of Ania parish, being its administrative center. Located on the Jägala River, which flows into the Gulf of Finland. There is a pulp and paper mill. It is planned to build a station for the combined production of electrical and thermal energy. Railway station on the line Tallinn - Narva.

Keila City

Kayla - A city not rich in sights in Northern Estonia. If you happen to be here, look at the unusual medieval church with an old cemetery and visit one of the many city cafes.


Keila is first mentioned in the Danish chronicles of 1241. Even then there was a wooden church, which in the XIV century was replaced by a stone one. It is known that in the second half of the 16th century, Keila was completely destroyed during the Livonian War. The church was later restored, but Kayla herself remained a tiny settlement of several houses concentrated around the church, and a manor-castle nearby.In the XIX century, the village grows so much that in 1862, local residents decide to install in front of the church a six-meter sculpture by Martin Luther (destroyed in 1949). The construction of the St. Petersburg-Tallinn-Baltic port (Paldiski) railway in 1870 becomes more important (although less symbolic) in the development of Kayla. In 1905, a branch was added to Haapsalu (now partially demolished), and Keila becomes a junction station, thus repeating the fate of Tapa, which owes its development to the same railway.

Since 1938, Keila has the status of a city. In Soviet times, a military unit was stationed next to Kayla, the traces of which are now practically destroyed. The city is dominated by the Estonian population (85%). The urban environment of Kayla is decidedly uninteresting: there are almost no old wooden houses, and the main part of the building is made up of private houses, cottages or apartment buildings of late Soviet and post-Soviet times. However, the city looks alive and developing - along with Saku and Saue, this is one of the satellites of Tallinn.


St. Michael's Church, Keskväljak 1

The church dates from the XIV century, which is hard to believe, looking at the playful decorations of the tower, the decor of which dates back to the XIX century. Nevertheless, medievalism is visible in the massive buttresses of the altar and rough masonry. However, the most interesting thing is not even this, but the internal structure: the columns stand right in the middle of the hall, that is, the church is not three- but two-arched and, as it were, is divided into two equal volumes with regular Gothic vaults. An old cemetery with tombstones from different eras has been preserved around the church - from modern times to massive stone slabs on German graves of the early 19th century and even medieval monuments in the form of a solar cross (a cross in a circle). Here are several separate tombs-chapels. Most of them are made in the form of small houses, which can be easily mistaken for farm buildings, but there is also a luxurious mausoleum with classical columns - it is located right behind the church.


For some reason, the central square of Kayla has split into two parts, united by a common name. The eastern part is a quiet square in front of the church, but in the western part there are two interesting buildings at once: a post-war culture house in the style of a modest stalance and a “town hall” built in 1958 (or rather, the district committee), in the architecture of which something German is traced.

Complex railway station, Jaama 1

In Keila, almost all of the pre-revolutionary buildings associated with the railway have been preserved - a wooden station, residential houses of the station workers, a warehouse, a water tower, and even a steam pump station. All this is very nice and resembles a similar, but a museum complex in Haapsalu, the benefit of which both stations were built in the same period.

Neo-Apostolic Church (Uusapostlik kirik), Jaama 18

Gray building in the spirit of functionalism or even postmodernism (1994).

Ruins of the castle (Uusapostlik kirik), Linnuse (near the museum)

The castle at Keila was not a fortress, but only a fortified estate, originally built by the Kegel family in the middle of the 14th century. Later, the castle was often rebuilt and changed owners, was severely destroyed during the Northern War and finally abandoned. The ruins were overgrown with grass and went into the ground so much that everyone forgot about them until in the 1970s. Local historians did not accidentally stumble upon an ancient stonework. Now the ruins have been excavated, cleared and stocked with a museum plate.


The city is quite small, all the attractions are within a radius of 15-20 minutes walk from the station. There are two city buses, but their routes are very bizarre, and they rarely go, and therefore are unlikely to be useful to you.

Taxi: +372 569-03-406, +372 564-73-383

How to get there

The city has a railway station, which is the only platform where there is a shed and a stand with a schedule. Nearby is the historic wooden station - now a restaurant. Every hour electric trains from Tallinn go to Kayla, 45 minutes on the way.

There are no bus stations in the city.Tallinn-Keila buses (No. 177, every 1-2 hours) depart from Estonia in Tallinn and arrive at Keila railway station. Passing buses stop in Keila on Kesk väljak Square (Apteek stop). These are buses to Paldiski (No. 145, 222) from Mere pst. in Tallinn (100 meters north of the hotel "Viru"), as well as No. 146 from the Baltic Station of Tallinn. All buses go to Kayla 40-45 minutes.

By car on the highway 8 (Paldiski mnt.), Or 4 (Pärnu mnt.) And then 11, from Tallinn 25-30 km. From Paldiski 23 km. The local road 17 leads to Haapsalu (78 km).

Kiviõli City

Kiviõli - a city in northeastern Estonia in Ida-Virumaa. It is an independent city municipality and is not included in any volost. Founded in 1922, it received city status in 1946, which was associated with the Soviet industrial development program in the north-western region of the USSR. The city has become one of the centers of the oil shale processing industry. In 1964, Kiviõli became part of the city of Kohtla-Järve and was part of it until 1991, when it again became an independent city.

general information

The main enterprise is a shale chemical plant. Near the city there are waste heaps formed from waste from the extraction and processing of shale. Around the city there are mines for the extraction of combustible shale.

Russians make up about 51% of the population, Estonians about 39%. The Orthodox Church of the Intercession of the Most Holy Theotokos (Moscow Patriarchate) operates.

Railway station on the Tallinn-Narva line.


Kohtla-Järve - the fourth largest city in Estonia (after Tallinn, Tartu and Narva), is a rather dull industrial center in the industrial area of ​​Estonia, where oil shale is mined. This is not the most remarkable town in Northern Estonia, but the municipality has tried to make its historical heritage attractive to tourists. Slag heaps around mined mines formed high hills, which were sown with grass, landscaped and turned into ski slopes or motocross tracks.


Kohtla-Järve received city status a little more than half a century ago. However, the settlements on its territory have existed for a long time. So, by 1241, the first mention in the Danish land register of the village of Järve (there it is called Jeruius). The present part of the city of Kukruse was first mentioned also in 1241 (Kukarus)and Sompa in 1420 (Soenpe).

Probably, in the place of the present Kohtla-Järve, the city would not have arisen if it were not for the combustible slate, whose deposits in these parts are quite significant. Figuratively speaking, oil shale is "hard oil". The fact that this stone can burn, the locals knew for a long time. There are legends telling how it was noticed. According to one of them, sometime in ancient times, shepherds, kindling bonfires, used to lay out a ring of stones around them. Usually, limestone was used for this, but once they used yellowish-brown stones, which turned out to be quite a few in that place. Shepherds found it hard to believe their eyes when they saw how hot these stones burn with firewood. According to another legend, a certain peasant built himself a bath of slate. It was necessary to melt it, as the walls caught fire - to the great amazement of the peasant and all the neighbors.

However, for a long time, the slate remained in the eyes of the local population only a strange curiosity that had no practical significance. It was not necessary to use it as a fuel, because there were enough forests around. In addition, the burning slate emits too much soot.

Seriously slate interested in the second decade of the twentieth century. It is known that in 1916 a batch of Estonian slate was sent to Petrograd in order to study its properties. Studies have shown that slate is a valuable mineral that can be used both as fuel and as a raw material for the chemical industry.

In 1919, the State Shale Industry Association was created in the Republic of Estonia. Slate was mined both underground, in mines, and by the open method, that is, on shale cuts. Near the mines and cuts grew settlements. In 1924, a plant for the production of shale oil was built near the railway station Kohtla. Next to him began to grow a working village, called Kohtla-Järve. In the mid-1930s, it included several working-class districts — Käva, Vaheküla, and Pavanda.

During the Second World War, the importance of the Estonian shale basin increased: Germany regarded it as its second most important source of fuel after the Romanian oil development. However, the Germans did not have time to begin full-scale exploitation of the field.

After the war, an increasing amount of slate was required for the north-western part of the Soviet Union. The main settlement of the shale basin received city status. June 15, 1946 residents of Kohtla-Järve became citizens.

From this point on, for almost twenty years, the process of administrative unification of the neighboring settlements within the framework of Kohtla-Järve has been going on. In 1949, the villages of Kohtla and Kukruse were included in Kohtla-Järve. In 1960, it included the cities of Johvi and Ahtme, as well as the village of Sompa. In 1964, the city of Kiviõli, the villages of Oru, Püssi and Viivikonna passed into submission to Kohtla-Järve. Thus, Kohtla-Järve has greatly grown, becoming at the same time a city with a unique layout, since its parts remained heavily scattered "islands" lying among forests, agricultural land and shale development.

In 1991, the number of parts of Kohtla-Järve decreased, Jõhvi, Kiviõli and Püssi left its composition, becoming independent cities. Currently, the Kohtla-Järve consists of six parts: the Järve part, Sompa, Kukruse, Ahtme, Oru and Viivikonna (Sirgala village is administratively included in the latter part). The layout of the city remains very peculiar. The number of inhabitants is slightly less than 50 thousand, but two people, one in Sirgala, and the other in the Järva part — that is, both in the territory of Kohtla-Järve — can be separated by a distance greater than 30 kilometers. The same distance separates people who are on the opposite outskirts of London or Paris.

In the 1990s, the volume of mining and processing of oil shale decreased, but the prospects for the continued existence of the oil shale industry remain, especially if it is possible to modernize it to the level of the most modern technologies. In addition, the industrial culture and skills accumulated over the decades, the industrial intellectual potential of the inhabitants of Kohtla-Järve provide ample opportunities for the development of other enterprises in the city that are not associated with slate.


Kohtla-Järve has a little less than 50 thousand inhabitants. The largest parts of the city are Järvezka (about 23 thousand inhabitants) and Ahtme (approximately 21.5 thousand inhabitants). This is followed by Sompa and Oru. (about 2,000 inhabitants in each of the parts), Viiviconna (900 inhabitants) and Kukruse (750 inhabitants).

Approximately 14,700 people are pensioners. Representatives of almost four dozen nationalities live in the city. Approximately four fifths are Russian and Russian-speaking residents, one fifth of the population is represented by Estonians. Thus, the city, as well as neighboring Narva, Jõhvi and Sillamäe, is predominantly Russian-speaking.


The most important areas of activity are associated with shale. Major enterprises include mines. (there are 2 mines and 3 quarries in total), they are managed by Eesti Pylevkivi JSC; The leading company in the field of shale chemistry is JSC Viru Keemia-Group, a chemical enterprise Nitrofert, which specializes in the production of nitrogen fertilizers and is a subsidiary of the Russian Gazprom. The local energy sector is also based on the slate - thermal power plants that provide the city with heat work on the slate.

Slate Museum

In the western industrial suburb of Kohtla-Nomme there is one of the most unusual museums in the region - the Slate Museum. The industrial profile of the region is reflected in this unique museum - with tunnels, miniature mine trains and operating mechanisms. Oil shale, enriched with paraffin, until recently was widely used as household and industrial fuel and was a major factor in environmental pollution. In winter, visitors can ski from landscaped heaps, and in summer they rent a bike.

There is also a climbing wall with a height of 26 m.

Jaama, 1, Kohtla-Nomme
Tel .: (372) 332-40-17
Open: Mon-Fri 9.00-17.00, Sat-Sun 11.00-15.00
paid entrance

Kunda City (Kunda)

Kund - a city in northern Estonia, in the county of Lääne-Virumaa. The city is known from the XIII century. According to 2018, the population of Kundy is 3,035 people. It is an industrial and port city with a special industrial beauty.

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Until the middle of the XIX century, Kunda remained a small village. In 1870, construction began on one of the largest cement plants in Russia, in 1893 - the first industrial power plant in Estonia. All this was the beginning of the development of the village and in 1938 it received city status.

Near Kunda, on the Lammasmägi hill, which was an island in an ancient lake, were found the remains of the oldest ancient settlement in Estonia (about 10 thousand years ago). Not far from the town on the coast are the ruins of Toolse. Food and cement industry. There is a cement museum.

A famous Estonian astronomer Ernst Epic was born in the city.


Kunda is an important industrial and port city of the North-East of Estonia. There is a cement plant (943 thousand tons of products in 2006), a trade port (1.7 million tons of cargo in 2007), in 2006 a pulp factory with a capacity of 140 thousand tons was built.

Kuressaare City

Kuressaare - the most beautiful of the island cities of Estonia; Here you can find beautiful examples of neoclassical, northern gothic and baroque architecture. The latter belong to the 1930s, when the city was a popular resort and wellness center. Kuressaare is located on the southern coast of the largest Estonian island Saaremaa, on the coast of the Gulf of Riga.

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The Teutonic knights conquered the island in 1227 and ruled here until 1557, when they were ousted by the Danes. In the next century, the island repeatedly passed from hand to hand - from Denmark to Sweden and Russia, in the end he, along with the rest of the Estonian islands, went to the Russian Tsar Peter I.

Three large resort and recreation complexes, built after the withdrawal of Estonia from the USSR, occupy a dominant position in the harbor area, but in general Kuressaare has a pleasantly old-fashioned look. The town hall, built in 1654, was restored in the 1960s, and pretty stone houses with red tile roofs lined the streets. (especially on the streets of Kauba and Tallinna). Kuressaare Castle, dating from 1340, was the seat of a medieval episcopate; This is one of the most impressive medieval citadels in Estonia. The castle houses the Saaremaa Museum, founded in 1865. Its collection reflects the history of the island and includes church robes and medieval weapons. Kuressaare is located approximately in the middle of the southern coast of Saaremaa.

Kardla City

Kardla - a city in Estonia, the administrative center and the largest city in the province of Hiiumaa. Received city status in 1938. The city has a sea harbor and the airport of the same name.

Geographical position

The city is located on the northeast coast of the second largest Estonian island of Hiiumaa, on the shores of the Baltic Sea in the bay of Tareste Bay. To the south-east of the city is the famous crater left by the Kärdla meteorite.


The modern Kärdla was first mentioned in the chronicles of 1564 as a small Swedish village that probably existed on the island from the time of the Vikings.

In the years 1721-1917the city was officially part of the Russian Empire, and survived the rise in connection with the opening in 1830 of the textile fabric. In 1849, the port also appeared in the village, although almost the entire infrastructure of the city was destroyed during the Second World War.

In 1918, the city became part of the independent Republic of Estonia. After the mass outflow of the Baltic Germans (1939–1941) and the Swedes (1943), the city was settled mainly by Estonians and small groups of Russians already in Soviet times.


The population of the city continues to decline and currently has less than 4 thousand people (3.736 in 2004) - mainly Estonians, but also a small number of Russians and Finns (about 2%). The main activities in the city are fishing, tourism, and agriculture. There is also a logging station.

Maardu City

Maardu - a city located in north-central Estonia on the shores of Muuga Bay, which is part of the Gulf of Finland. Maardu has an excellent geographical location - 15 km from the Estonian capital of Tallinn, on the seashore in the center of the intersection of sea, rail and highways, near the international airport. The port of Muuga.

general information

The emergence of the industrial village of Maardu occurred in 1939 due to the development of phosphate deposits. In Soviet times, the large chemical plant Estonofosforit was built, which was closed for environmental reasons with the restoration of independence. Since 1980, the village of Maardu was part of the Marine area of ​​the city of Tallinn, but on November 7, 1991 it became an independent city.

The majority of the population are Russians, Estonians about 20%. There is an Orthodox church of the Archangel Michael of God (Moscow Patriarchate), a Lutheran church, the Kingdom Hall of Jehovah's Witnesses. The cemetery by the decision of the city authorities is divided into the Orthodox, Lutheran and Muslim sectors.

There are three schools in the city - one with Estonian and two with Russian.

Narva City

Narva - "double" city; she stands on the river Narva, which separates Estonia from Russia. Before independence, it was part of Ivangorod, located on the east bank of the river. Now there is a strictly guarded border between the two cities, which is not easy for both tourists and locals to cross. Narva is highly industrialized, and here one can feel the influence of Soviet heavy industry, whose enterprises have long been considered city-forming. Most of its inhabitants speak Russian, but few seek to return to Russia, preferring relative prosperity in the new Estonia.


Narva was settled in the 13th century and achieved prosperity under Swedish rule in the 16th and 17th centuries. Russian Tsar Peter I saw the potential of the city as a seaport and expanded the harbor, and also built fortifications. Narva was heavily damaged during World War II - only a few historic buildings survived or were restored.


The strongest impression is made by the castle on the river bank, facing Russia, and the Resurrection Cathedral, a magnificent Orthodox church with red domes.

Narva Castle, founded by the Danes in the 13th century, is the main attraction of the city, the most impressive citadel in Estonia and one of the outstanding military history monuments in Northern Europe. The ring of the fortress walls and bastions was built on by the various masters of the city, from the Danes to the Swedes who fortified Narva as a frontier fortress; despite this, the Russians knocked them out in the XVIII century. The museum houses a collection of weapons and armor from medieval to those dating back to World War II.

"Long Herman", the tallest tower of the castle (50 m), looks across the Narva River to the much more dilapidated fortifications of Ivangorod on the Russian side. To the south of the castle lies a coastal park and towering massive external bastions, attached to the medieval structures by the Swedes.There is also a copy of the "Swedish Lion" - a monument erected in honor of the victory of the Swedish king Charles XII over the Russians in 1701. Peterburi, 2, Narva. Tel: (372) 359-92-30. Open: every day 10.00-18.00. Paid entrance.

Saaremaa Island (Saaremaa)

Saaremaa - The largest island in Estonia with a population of about 40,000 people. Its coastline is heavily indented, and hundreds of tiny uninhabited islands are scattered around. Kuressaare, the capital and main port of Saaremaa, is located on the protected south coast.

In the landscape of Saaremaa, cultivated fields alternate with lakes, birch and coniferous forests. Nature harmonizes with historic architecture: everywhere there are medieval churches, villages and picturesque windmills; from the northern coast, the neighboring island of Hiiumaa is visible. Saaremaa is also known for its many working windmills, the most picturesque of which can be seen in Angla (60 km north of Kuressaare).

What to see

Vilsanli National Park (Vilsandi)

Vilsandi National Park includes about 160 rocky islands, as well as capes and bays on the western coast of Saaremaa. It is designed to protect about 500 species of plants and nearly 250 species of sea and waterfowl; Here huge flocks of gag, terns, gulls, cormorants, white-tailed geese and other birds, both local and migratory, nest. Over a million birds migrate through this region on their way from the Arctic to southern Europe and North Africa.

Travel by bus from Kuressaare to the village of Kihelkonna. The western coast of Saaremaa, 32 km west of Kuressaare. Organization of visits - through the administration of the park in the village of Loona. Tel: (372) 454-68-80. Open: Mon-Fri 9.00-17.00. The park is open: daily, around the clock. The entrance is free.

Kaali crater

The crater formed after the impact of a meteorite about 3,000 years ago is one of the most interesting natural sights of Estonia. Jade-green lake more than 100 m in diameter has an almost perfectly round shape. It was considered sacred among Estonians living in the pre-Christian era.

Drive from Kuressaare to the northeast along highway 74. After 26 km, turn left (north) onto highway 79. 2 km after Liiva-Putla, turn right to Kaali crater, which is signposted.

Church of St. Catherine

The Church of St. Catherine, built in the XV century. and serving the parish Kaija, the smallest on the island of Saaremaa and one of the most beautiful. In its wall paintings there is a pagan influence, and the carved pillars were made by masons from the entire Baltic region.

Located in the north of the island in the village of Parsama.

Angla Windmills

There were once hundreds of windmills in Saaremaa, and there are many corresponding symbols on tourist maps, but the five square towers standing here are the last working mechanisms and are considered symbols of the island.

Located in the north of the island in the village of Angla.


It is the largest village in the south-west of Saaremaa with a picturesque church of the 13th century. The farm-museum Mihkli, located just south of it, deserves a short visit.

Farm Museum Mihkli (Mihkli)

The main exhibit of this open-air museum is a working windmill, surrounded by cottages with stone walls and reed roofs, growing in abundance on the shores of the island. Travel by bus from Kuressaare.

Viki village, Saaremaa, 32 km north-west of Kuressaare. Tel: (372) 454-66-13. Open: middle of apr. - Sep. every day 10.00-18.00. Paid entrance.

Paldiski City

Paldiski - A city on the coast of the Gulf of Finland, located on a promontory at the western tip of the northern coast of Estonia. The two coastal islands, Väike-Pakri and Suur-Pakri, protect the harbor from the violence of the elements. The territory of the city together with the waters, as well as the Pakri Islands, occupies 102 km². The history of Paldiski is closely connected with the decades of Soviet power, and before that with centuries of sovereignty of the Russian Empire in Estonia.


The comfortable bay attracted the attention of Peter I shortly after the conquest of Estonia at the end of the devastating Northern War. In 1715 he ordered the construction of a harbor here, which he intended to use as the main base for his growing navy. The king died before the completion of his project.

The Russians again turned their attention to Paldiski in 1939. The Soviet armed forces returned at the end of World War II, and for the next 50 years Paldiski was a closed military zone. After the withdrawal of troops in 1995, Paldiski resembled a ghost town, and many of its buildings became unusable.

With the advent of freight and passenger ferry services between Estonia and Germany, Finland and Sweden, the city breathed a breath of fresh air. The old military buildings were dismantled, the buildings of the Soviet era were restored, it became possible to visit the coastal islands that once served exclusively for military purposes, and now serve as natural reserves.

Russian empire

From the 14th century, Swedish settlers lived on the peninsula and a small fortress was built.

On July 23, 1718, in the Gulf of Pakri, Peter I personally founded a military port at which the settlement arose. From 1723 Rogervik was officially called (Swede. Rågervik), in 1762-1922 - the Baltic Port, hereinafter Paldiski. Construction of the port and the fortress took place in the period 1716 - 1726, after the death of Peter I was suspended. A house was built on the Pakri Peninsula and on the island of Little Rooghe for Peter the Great. The remains of the Peter fortress and the docks are visible now. Peter I himself drafted a design and a drawing of the port's security pier. He also outlined locations for the merchant harbor, the city and the Admiralty Shipyard. On October 22, 1724, the Pakri lighthouse was built. It is one of the oldest lighthouses in the Baltic Sea.

In 1728 a wooden church was built.

In 1762, large-scale construction was resumed by Catherine II. The head of the work was appointed Field Marshal Count Munnich. On August 20, 1762, the city of Rogervik was renamed the Baltic Port. In July 1764, Catherine II visited the city. On November 18, 1768, on the Senate report on the fate of the port, Catherine II ordered the construction work to be stopped, concentrating all efforts on the construction of Kronstadt. In 1770, at the behest of Catherine II, the first school was opened for the children of soldiers, officers, artisans and merchants.

In 1775, Paldiski was exiled along with his father Yula Aznulin and on November 29, 1775 a participant of the Pugachev rebellion, a Bashkir national hero, Salavat Yulaev arrived. He died during penal servitude on September 26, 1800, and was buried in Paldiski. There is a monument on the territory of the city park.

In 1787, the Baltic Port received the status of a county town. In 1784 - 1787, according to the project of architect Johann Mohr, the St. George church was built. At the end of the XIX century it was rebuilt by the architect Edelson.

In 1870, the Baltic Railway Port - Revel - St. Petersburg was built to the city.

In 1876 a nautical school was opened in Paldiski, which later received its own building. The first head of the Naval College in Paldiski was A. Feldhun, a graduate of the Riga Naval College. In the school for the years 1876-1897. there were 463 students. It was the highest level of teaching of all the nautical schools located in the territory of the Estland province.

In June 1912, the meeting of Emperor Nicholas II and Kaiser Wilhelm II sailed on the yachts "Standart" and "Hohenzollern" took place in the harbor of the Baltic port.

During the First World War, the city became the scene of hostilities. At 2.30 am on November 11, 1916, the German destroyers of the 10th German Flotilla fired the Baltic port with guns for half an hour. In port facilities, and then in the city, 162 high-explosive and shrapnel shells were fired. 24 buildings were damaged, including the station and the observation tower, 10 people were killed, including 8 civilians.

In 1922, during the period of the first Estonian republic, the city was given a new name, Paldiski.

In October 1939, by agreement with the Estonian government, the Soviet Union placed a military base in Paldiski. By the beginning of hostilities in Estonia in 1941, coastal defense batteries had been installed on the Pakri Peninsula and the Pakri Islands. The port was used to house warships. A military airfield was built.

Soviet period

During the Second World War, it became one of the places of evacuation of the Soviet fleet from the Gulf of Riga. Busy by German troops on August 28, 1941. During the retreat of the Soviet troops, coastal defense batteries were blown up. During the German occupation, there was a naval base on the peninsula and there was an Abwehr German intelligence school. Released on September 24, 1944 by the landing force of the Baltic Fleet during the Tallinn operation. On November 21, 1956, the submarine M-200 “Revenge” of the 157th detached brigade of submarines of the Baltic Fleet and the destroyer “Stately” crashed in the Suurup Strait. As a result of the failed rescue operation, 28 submariners died.

In 1964, the city became a center for training nuclear submarine crews.

In the city, which became one of two closed administrative-territorial entities in the territory of the Estonian SSR, the base of submarines was located ("Float"), training nuclear reactor, parking of torpedo boats and small rocket ships, hospital and clinic. The 157th separate submarine brigade, a frontier post, a border detachment headquarters, a company of military builders, an air defense missile unit and a disciplinary battalion of the Baltic Fleet were based in the city.

The Paldiski training center had two operating submarine reactors of the first and second generations, as well as a unique simulator for training nuclear submarine crews. The territory of the Pakri Peninsula, where the city is located, was fenced with barbed wire and was a closed specially protected area.

The second Estonian republic on August 30, 1994, Paldiski left the last Russian warship. The city was the last object of the location of the Russian armed forces in Estonia. On September 26, 1995, an act of transferring a nuclear facility to Paldiski Estonia was signed. Before delivery, Russian specialists removed fuel rods from the reactors, the reactors were enclosed in special concrete sarcophagi.

From May 15, 1994, Paldiski was incorporated into the city of Keila. This was due to the small percentage of Estonian citizens in the population. On October 20, 1996, Paldiski was returned to the city.


Sea freight, garment factory, Alexela fuel terminal, biodiesel refining terminal.

South port

Port in the composition of the holding company "Tallinn Port", created on the site of the former base of Soviet submarines (so-called. "Float"). It is the largest Estonian port nearest to Europe and has a number of other advantages: it does not freeze in winter, it has deep-water berths, which allow it to work with vessels with a carrying capacity of up to 50,000. It handles ro-ro vessels, bulk, general and piece cargoes, has the capacity to handle cars, wheeled vehicles, bulk cargo.

North Port

A private port that handles vehicles, containers, general and bulk cargo. There are plans to build a passenger terminal. Under the modernization program, since 2002, berths have been constructed to service general cargo and Ro-Ro vessels, a 375-meter protective pier.

Park Toila-Oru (Oru Park)

Park Toila-Oru located in the valley of the river Pühajõgi in the region of Ida-Virumaa in northeastern Estonia, near the village of Toila. The park is a conservation area. Toila-Oru is famous for its terms made in the ancient Roman style and picturesque landscapes.

general information

The park was laid out in 1897-1900 around the summer palace of St. Petersburg merchant Eliseev. The park was designed by the famous garden architect from Riga Georg Kupkhalt.

The Toila-Oru park covering almost 80 hectares was divided into a landscape with beautiful and diverse nature: the steep coast of the Gulf of Finland (Glint of Northern Estonia), rising to a height of almost 50 m, winding, with multiple rapids, the River Pyhayõgi, deep in the valley of the glacier with ledges .

In 1934, rich Estonian industrialists bought a palace complex with a park for 100,000 kroner from Eliseev who emigrated to Paris and presented it as a summer residence for the head of the Republic of Estonia.

During World War II, the Orus palace complex was completely destroyed. In the postwar years, the park forestry carried out the necessary work to restore the park. Since 1996, major renovation works have been carried out on the terraces of the destroyed palace, the palace garden, the arboretum, etc.

In Toila-Oru, more than 250 plant species have grown. Most of them belong to vegetation from European origin, among which trees from the Far East and even American islands can be seen. For example, the main alley is decorated with linden trees planted here more than a century ago.

In addition to vegetation, the park is famous for its fountains, three of which were restored, as well as the Nõimetsa Pavilion or the Witch Forest, from where you can watch Estonian sunset in the summertime. The landscape of the entire park area has a natural style with graceful alleys and paths framed by Dutch lindens, silver poplars and mighty maples.

Park visits are permitted around the clock, admission is free. You can get here by bus number 106 and 108.

Pärnu City (Pärnu)

PärnuLocated on the banks of the Gulf of Riga at the mouth of the Pärnu River, Estonia’s stylish “summer capital”. Its sandy beaches, parking for yachts, spa resorts and beautiful surroundings attract travelers from Tallinn and from all over Estonia, as well as from other Baltic republics and Russia. In the summer season, the population of Pärnu, usually 50,000 people, rises to 150,000.

Oddly enough, only a few Western tourists have discovered the pleasures of Pärnu, including a rich cultural life, summer festivals and a rich assortment of nightly entertainment. Some pop and rock events are moved from Tallinn to Pärnu for the July-August holiday season.

general information

The eight-kilometer-long sandy beach of Pärnu is considered the best in Estonia; the shallow waters of the sea become pleasantly warm during the summer months. Not far from Pärnu, you can enjoy the natural beauty of the reserve Soomaa and Kihnu Island in the Gulf of Riga.

There is every reason to believe that Pärnu, with its comfortable hotels and the best bars and restaurants in the country, will soon become popular among foreign guests.

A significant part of Pärnu was built relatively recently, at least by Estonian standards. The city was founded by the merchants of the Hanseatic League in 1346 and became an important seaport during the late Middle Ages. Unfortunately, very little remains of the ancient city - only the Red Tower, fragments of fortifications from the 15th century. at the crossroads of Hospidali and Uus and the 17th century Tallinn Gate. at the west end of the street Louna.

Modern urban planning, public buildings and elegant mansions - all this appeared in the XIX century, when trade ceased to be the main source of income for the citizens and Pärnu became a resort. The sea baths began to open in the middle of the 19th century, the yacht club opened in 1906, and on the eve of World War II the city received up to 7,000 guests every summer, many of whom stayed in luxurious establishments, such as the Bristol Hotel, built in 1900

Pärnu City Hall was built in 1797 in a strict classical style. The Church of St. Catherine opposite the town hall, completed in 1768, was named in honor of the Russian Queen Catherine the Great. This church with elegant domes and spiers is one of the most beautiful baroque buildings in Estonia, and its interior is decorated with hundreds of wonderful Orthodox icons in gilded and silver salaries. The Church of St. Elizabeth at the corner of Kuninga and Nikolai streets was built a little earlier, in 1747She is also named after the Russian empress.

The most interesting modern building in the city is the concert hall on Aida street. This striking glass and concrete building, which received its first visitors in 2002, cost almost 6 million euros and became one of the main venues in Estonia, where classical music and operas are performed. Pärnu also claims to be an Estonian center of visual arts; several art galleries exhibit canvases of the most famous local painters.

The center of Pärnu is quite compact; it’s nice to walk around sightseeing. 140 km south of Tallinn.

Sights of Pärnu

City Art Gallery

The city art gallery is located in the new Pärnu concert hall; Here are exhibited works of modern Estonian artists, sculptors and engravers.

Aida, 4. Open: Tue-Fri 12.00-19.00, Sat 12.00-17.00. paid entrance

City Museum

The museum exhibits one of the largest archaeological collections in Estonia, including exhibits of the Neolithic era from the settlement of 9000 BC. Oe., discovered during excavations in Cindy, near Pärnu. Aida, 4. Tel .: (372) 443-32-31.

Open: Mon-Sat 10.00-18.00. Paid entrance.

Memorial Museum of Lily Koidula

This interesting museum, located in the school building of the XIX century, opened in 1945. It is dedicated to the life and work of Lydia Koidula (1843-1886), an Estonian poetess who spent most of her life in Pärnu and was one of the leading figures of Estonia’s cultural renaissance in the 19th century.

She was one of the first to write poems in Estonian. The museum's collection tells about her life and the career of her father, Johann Voldemar Lannsen, who established the country's first newspaper in Estonian and played an important role in the Estonian movement for the attainment of national identity in the 19th century.

J. V. Jansenni, 37, Pdrnu. Tel: (372) 443-33-13. Open: Wed-Sun 10.00-18.00. Paid entrance.

Modern Art Museum

This art gallery, also called the Chaplinsky Center (although it has nothing to do with Charlie Chaplin’s personality), is at the forefront of new Estonian art; in the permanent exhibition - paintings of the XX and XXI centuries; Also, seasonal exhibitions are held here. The center opened in 1992; Since then, the exposition has expanded and now includes more than 1000 works. Not all of them can be called brilliant. (the impression is made that curators value avant-garde and outrage more than traditional artistic virtues), but they excite the imagination and cause interesting associations.

Esplanaadi 10. Phone: (372) 443-07-72. Open: daily 9.00-19.00. Paid entrance.

Neighborhood Pärnu

Pärnu is interesting enough not to be bored for several days (and nights)but near the coast, coastal islands and country beauties are also worth a visit. Go on a trip by car, bus or bicycle.

The beaches of Pärnu with fine white sand are probably the best in Estonia and definitely the most sought after. They start from the southwestern outskirts of the city, where the local Art Deco mud baths offer a wide range of wellness treatments, and stretch for several kilometers to the south along the coast of the Bay of Pärnu.

Rakvere City

Rakvere - The sixth largest city in Estonia, the capital of Lääne-Virumaa. Most famous for its medieval castle, but in addition to the castle there is something to see: old houses and churches, its own theater, as well as buildings in the spirit of Estonian functionalism, built during the interwar period.


In the 1st half and the middle of the 13th century, Rakvere is mentioned three times: as an ancient settlement and settlement Tarvanpea (1226), a Danish settlement Wesenberg (1252) and in the Russian chronicles Rukovor (1268). The ruins of the order castle are located on a 25-meter-high Vallimägi hill. At the beginning of the XIII century, the ancient Estonian settlement Tarvanpea was located here, on the site of which the Danes built a castle in the XIII century.

It is known, for example, that in 1267Novgorodians were going to go on a military campaign against the Lithuanians, but then they changed their mind and went to Racovor (Rakvere) after Narva, "devastated much land, but did not take the cities" and, having lost 7 people, left home. In January of 1268, the Novgorodians marched on Livonia under the leadership of seven princes, among whom was Dovmont and the Pskovites. Devasting the Livonian lands, the Russian troops reached the Kegola River near Rakvere, where on February 12, 1268 they met with resistance. Not far from the city on February 18, 1268, a battle of Russian troops took place with the combined forces of the German and Danish crusaders (the Battle of Rakovor). There was a terrible slaughter - says the chronicler - what the fathers and grandfathers did not see; the Russians broke the Germans and drove them seven miles to the city of Rakovor, but this victory cost them dearly; Posadnik with the 13th most famous citizens fell on the spot, many other good boyars fell, and black people without a number, others were missing, including Kondrat, the Thousands.

In 1345, Northern Estonia passed into the possession of the Livonian Order. Here is what is written about this in the chronicle of Hermann Wartberg: "In 1345, on the day of St. Lucius (December 13), a general chapter took place in the castle of Marienburg, on which brother Heinrich Duzemer was elected the Great Master. The next day (December 14) , Brother Gosvin was appointed by them the Master of Livonian.The named Grand Master bought, with Gosvin's prompting, Harrien’s land with locks Revel, Wesenberg and Narvoy for 19,000 marks of pure silver from the most luminous Danish king Voldemar, according to the royal charter (1346 August 29) allegations from Pope Clement VI, which are Options in the same year, on the day of the Beheading of John the Baptist (29 August) and the next (1347), All Saints' Day (November 1), and the brothers were transferred together with the locks. " Since that time, the order garrison housed in the castle and work began on strengthening and restructuring. In the next century, a powerful stone castle, called Wesenberg, already stood on the hill of Vallimägi.

It was a castle like castella with a courtyard surrounded by galleries. Initially, the north wing of the castle was built. The southern building with corner towers that have survived to our days, was built in the 15-16 centuries. This corps has retained its original height, in spite of numerous wars and battles over all the five millennia of its existence. On the south side of Castella, a spacious forburg was erected with a gate in the northeast corner, protected by a semicircular weapon tower.

In 1558, the troops of Tsar Ivan the Terrible, with almost no resistance, captured Wesenberg along with other castles. Estonians swore allegiance to the Moscow sovereign.

Subsequently, during the Livonian War in the 60-80s. The 16th century castle was partially destroyed. The massive destruction of the castle occurred during the battles of the Swedish-Polish war of 1602-05. During the revision of the state of the castles, Wesenberg was deleted from the list of fortresses due to the impossibility of a speedy restoration.

In the 17-18 years. The ruins were used as a quarry supplying the surrounding areas with building material. In the 19th century, with the advent of the ruins, a hill with ruins in Rakvere began to be appreciated as a picturesque place for walks and picnics. The first work to bring the ruins in order were carried out in the years 1901-1902.

In 1975, large-scale work on the restoration and preservation of the castle began. By 1988, the main work was completed. On the 700th anniversary of the city of Rakvere, on the Vallimägi Hill, the work of the sculptor Tauno Kangro was established, a gigantic figure of the tour, which immediately catches the eye when entering the city. The castle organizes exhibitions, sales of souvenirs and handicrafts. From the fortress wall there is a beautiful view with windmills and the whole provincial city is in full view.

Today, there is a historical museum on the castle grounds. The atmosphere created in the museum is designed to move visitors through the ages into the Middle Ages, which she brilliantly succeeds! You can visit: the torture chamber, the room of death and "hell", the chapel, the room with weapons and armor, the Livonian Order history hall,refectory, wine cellar, master's hall and other rooms. There is access to the gun turrets and the walls of the castle. In the courtyard of the castle there are: a shooting gun, carts with hay, grazing sheep, a siege tower, targets that you can shoot a bow, and other items of medieval life. There is also a blacksmith shop in the courtyard, where visitors can personally forge, for example, a horseshoe or a nail. In this undertaking with joy will help the good-smith. You can also see the bull figure next to the castle (height 3.5 m), which is a symbol of the city.

City of Sillamae

Sillamae - neat and charming city in Estonia, which is like a phoenix, rose from the ashes. In tsarist times, this seaside town was the favorite resort of the rich people of St. Petersburg; here was the great Russian composer Tchaikovsky.


After World War II, the name of this city became associated with environmental pollution. In the late 1920s. In Sillamäe, one of the largest heat power plants in Estonia operating on oil shale was built. In the Soviet era, there was a center for the extraction and processing of uranium ore.

In the post-Soviet period, vigorous efforts were made to compensate for environmental damage, and now Sillamäe is experiencing a rebirth. Strongly damaged during World War II, it was rebuilt in the 1950s. as a model city for the Soviet working class elite. Buildings such as the Palace of Culture with an abundance of architectural decorations look like a funny anachronism. The “semi-antique” city hall would be appropriate in the American theme park, and on the apartment buildings built for local workers, various Soviet symbols were preserved.

Almost all Sillamäe residents speak Russian, and although not many here would like to return to Soviet times, even less do they want to get rid of Soviet relics. The exposition of the city museum focuses on the achievements of the USSR during its heyday.

Geographical position

Sillamäe is located in northeastern Estonia, in the Ida-Virumaa district, on the shore of the Gulf of Finland, at the confluence of the Sytka River, not far from the Estonian-Russian border. The distance from Sillamäe to Tallinn is 186 km, to Narva - 25 km, to St. Petersburg - 170 km. Through the city passes the highway Tallinn - Narva - St. Petersburg.


The first mention of Sillamäe as a settlement where Tor Bryggen tavern was located refers to 1502. In 1700 a mill and a good bridge over the river were built here. For some time, the lands of the present city were part of the estate of Vaivara, from which Sillamyagi half-mansion was subsequently allocated. It became a completely separate farm in 1849.

From the end of the 19th century, Sillamyagi and the nearby Tursamäe became resort villages, popular with the Petersburg intelligentsia. In 1869, Russian composer Pyotr Tchaikovsky rested here. In 1891, Ivan Pavlov came here to rest and went here to rest every summer for 25 years.

But industrial life has invaded resort lands. In 1928, with the help of Swedish capital, the Estonian oil consortium built a shale processing plant, a power station and a small port. In 1940, 2,600 inhabitants lived in Sillamäe. During the Second World War, the plant was destroyed.

The history of the development of Sillamäe as an industrial city began in 1946, when it was decided to create here a large metallurgical plant for processing shale ores in order to produce uranium oxides. Initially, the company used local shale ore. Since the 60s, uranium concentrates from Eastern Europe have become the main raw materials. Sillamäe has long been a closed city (Narva 10). After cessation of uranium ore processing in 1990, the plant completely switched to the production of rare-earth products.

In 1957, already in the times of the USSR, Sillamäe received city status. Many families of industrialists moved to the city from Russia, Ukraine and other republics of the former USSR.


According to the Population Register, the number of Sillamäe residents was 16,908 as of October 10, 2005. The actual number of residents is approx. 17 500 people. About 80.8% of residents are Russians, 3% are Ukrainians, 3% are Belarusians, 3% are Estonians. Almost 7 thousand inhabitants are citizens of the Russian Federation.

Residential areas are located east of the Sytke River. Classic boulevards and wide staircases leading to the sea shore underline the unique landscape of the city. The proximity of the resort of Narva-Jõesuu and the pine forest give the townspeople and guests of the city an opportunity to have a good rest.


"Sillamäe began to show clear boundaries for the successful development of the region, largely related to the realization of Tiit Vähi’s dream of a port and its associated free economic zone," writes the Estonian economic newspaper Äripäev.

The legacy of the previous life, the radioactive waste is buried in dumps, not far from which began to build a port, which for several years only talked about, the newspaper said. The newspaper notes that the entrepreneurship incubator, which started its work in September last year, has already been almost sold to customers, and final work is being carried out at the CHP plant before the start of production.

Over the past months and over the next two years, 2 billion rubles have been invested in the city and its environs. CZK

Prices are rising, as real estate firms began buying property in Sillamäe while waiting for investment.

The Estonian-Russian border, the border between the EU and Russia, is only 25 km away.

The nearest railway passenger station is located in Waivar, in the village 5 kilometers from the city

In Sillamäe, a free economic zone that allows processing goods without duties will remain for at least another 7 years. This place seems to be created for business development.

The port owner Tiit Vyahi is delighted with such a development of events, the newspaper said.

The Silmet plant is considered to be the weakest link in the Wahy business empire. The price of pure niobium and tantalum produced on it on the world market has already fallen three times.

Because of this, Silmet was even at a loss last year. At the same time, in the face of Silmet, we are dealing with one of the five leading world producers of tantalum and niobium.

“This market is stable,” notes Vyahi. “The only problem is the price of the metal. Currently, the price of tantalum has risen to one fifth, which makes sure that the business will be more successful.”

Today, Sillamäe is rightfully called the port city.

The main tasks of the local authorities for the next four years in Sillamäe, in which 17.5 thousand people live, A. Kiviorg calls the promotion of the creation of new jobs, the development of urban

infrastructure related to the newly commissioned Sillamäe trade port, which will also open passenger lines from next year. We need to build a new road to the port, build hotels, shops, parking lots for cars. City government will not be on the sidelines even when solving by state structures such tasks as the construction of terminals for border guards and customs officers in a new port. And in previous years, local government made a significant contribution to the implementation of the Silmet Group concern of the seaport project.

The agenda of the new government is also the problem of providing the city with high-quality drinking water and the reconstruction of the sewer system. Generally, A. Kiviorg explains, Sillamäe expects major changes, the local authorities need to develop a new layout of the city, taking into account the development of the port complex and the need to strengthen ties with Narva and the resort of Narva-Jõesuu.

Referring to the topic of new jobs, which the seaport launch promises, the leader of the Sillamäe centrists says that the development of terminals and the emergence of a significant number of additional jobs is a long process, it will cover several years.

Ain Kiviorg did not pass over the subject of the demographic situation in Sillamäe in conversation.Earlier, the birth rate in the city fell noticeably, but in the last year or two it stabilized, about 140 babies were born in 2004. The local authorities need to more actively help young families in providing housing and take other measures to stimulate fertility, to solve the whole complex of population conservation problems. In the meantime, we have to admit that negative demographic trends have raised the question of the inevitability of closing one of the four Sillamäe comprehensive schools by 2008.

In 1957, Sillamäe received city status.

Tallinn City (Tallinn)

Tallinn - the capital of Estonia; a city with a long history and a major seaport. It is located on the isthmus between the Baltic Sea and Lake Ulemiste. Even in the 21st century, the delightful atmosphere of old Europe continues to reign in Tallinn, and tourists from all over the former Soviet Union continue to flock here.

You can make a fascinating journey into the past of the Estonian capital without the notorious time machine - just walk through the old part of the city, which has preserved its architectural sights. Only in Tallinn can one truly experience the true spirit of the Middle Ages, which the air itself seems to be saturated with. Only after wandering along narrow, paved cobblestone lanes, one can not only learn about the terrible moments of urban history, but also get acquainted with amazing legends and stories, which no guidebook will tell ...

From Kolyvan to Tallinn

Dannebrog falls from the sky during the Battle of Lindanise (1219)

For more than 860 years of existence, the capital of Estonia has changed its name several times. For the first time, the Arab geographer Al-Idrisi mentioned the place on the Baltic Sea in 1154. Russian chronicles, too, left little information about a small seaside settlement with its own harbor, dubbing it Kolyvania.

In 1219, troops of the Danish king Valdemar II landed here, who destroyed the ancient settlement to the ground, erecting its own city called Lindanis on its ashes. From that moment, quiet life in the former Kolyvan ended. The coastal territory became an apple of contention between several nations at once. The devastating raids of the Estonians were interspersed with the claims of the German spiritual and knightly order, as well as the vain attempts of the Danes to retain their own power. In the end, Denmark surrendered, selling a place to the Teutonic Order in 1347. According to the established tradition, the new owner secured his name outside the city - Reval (Russian version - Reval).

Tallinn in the 1630s. Engraving of Adam Olearius

From the beginning of the 15th century, Revel became a member of the Hanseatic League and actively developed economically. It was during this period that most of the artistic and architectural monuments that are so popular with today's tourists were created. But, as is often the case, the heyday turned out to be a temporary phenomenon. In 1561, the Livonian Order fell to pieces, and the Revel burghers, frightened by Russia's close neighborhood, immediately asked for the protection of the Swedish king.

The city was incorporated into the Russian Empire during the Northern War. This historical period includes the construction of a military harbor and a royal palace in Reval.

Tallinn at the beginning of the 20th century

After the October Revolution, Estonia declared its own independence, and in 1919, Revel got its modern name - Tallinn. The city began to grow, it was built pedagogical and polytechnic institutes, the Academy of Arts. But already in 1940, by an unwritten treaty between I. Stalin and A. Hitler, Tallinn, and with it all Estonia, were forcibly introduced into the Soviet Union. The republic gained full economic and political independence in 1991. In the same year, Tallinn was declared the capital of the new Estonian state.

Tallinn Town Hall Square

Geographical position

The city is located in the northern part of Europe, on the southern side of the Gulf of Finland. Tallinn’s main lake is Ülemiste. It is the main source of fresh water for residents of the capital.The only significant river flowing through Tallinn is the Pirita. It is remote from the center and is protected by its beautiful surroundings.

Panorama of Tallinn Old Town of Tallinn

Districts of Tallinn

In the Soviet era, the city was divided into 4 large areas:

  • October;
  • Nautical;
  • Leninist;
  • Kalininsky.

In March 1993, the number of territorial-administrative units of Tallinn increased to 8, giving them Estonian names.

Kesklinn (Kesklin). The central area of ​​the capital, which received the greatest popularity among tourists. The bulk of cultural and historical sites are concentrated in Kesklinna, since it includes the oldest part of Tallinn - the Old Town. On the territory of the district there are the Tallinn Port, the Parliament building, the Town Hall, the National Opera Estonia, the Dome Cathedral, the Kadriorg Park, the Ülemiste Lake, the Alexander Nevsky Cathedral, and many other architectural monuments.

Kesklin District

Kristiine (Kristiine). The most "green" part of Tallinn. Here is the famous park Leveruhe and three protected gardens.

Kristiine district

Lasnamäe. The most densely populated area of ​​the city is known for the fact that in its place in 1343 there was a major riot (St. George's Night), which marked the beginning of a further peasant war against the German crusaders. Today, there are large industrial enterprises.

District Lyasnamäe

Mustamäe (Mustamäe). Perhaps the poorest on the sights is the area of ​​Tallinn, most of the territory of which is occupied by panel high-rises from the Soviet era.

Mustamäe District

Nõmme. Once this part of the Estonian capital was an independent city. The area gives the impression of a quiet, green quarter: the houses here are mostly private, and the building density is low. Of the architectural monuments located in Nõmme, only the palace of Baron von Glen can be called.

Old post office building in Nõmme district of Glen Castle

Pirita. Prestigious area with a sea beach. The vast majority of local buildings are private mansions and cottages. It is through Pirita that the only urban river flows. Tourists visit the area mainly because of the television tower and the monastery of St. Bridget.

Pirita District

Põhja-Tallinn (Põhja-Tallinn). Once the fishing village of Kalamaja, and today one of the metropolitan areas of Põhja-Tallinn is known for its ports. Except for a few museums, there are no major attractions in this part of the city. But there are abandoned industrial buildings that ceased their work after the collapse of the Union. Today the area is in dire need of improvement.

Põhja-Tallinn District

Haabersti (Haabersti). Haabersti is the second Lake of Tallinn - Harku. The pond has its own beach, attracting tourists here. The largest Estonian zoo is located in the same area.

Haabersti district Tallinn Zoo Museum in the open air

Tallinn Attractions

Tallinn Town Hall

The main part of Tallinn’s cultural attractions is grouped in the old part of the city, which in turn is divided into Upper and Lower Towns. Medieval castles, cathedrals, town hall - all this is an integral part of the standard tourist routes.

The ancient temples and cloisters of Tallinn have not sunk into oblivion, as is often the case with ancient buildings. On the contrary, they are perfectly preserved and, just as centuries ago, delight the citizens with their authentic look. Part of the churches converted into museums, which are exciting excursions. The rest successfully combine the reception of tourist groups with the daily departure of the service.

Tallinn Town Hall Square for Christmas Day Restaurant in medieval style Tallinn Town Hall Square from a height

Most of the excursions start from the Town Hall Square of Tallinn, the center of which is marked with a wind rose mounted on the pavement. Local guides say that if you stand at this point and look with your eyes at the 5 tower spiers of the Old City, you can safely make any wish and it will come true.

The place that used to serve as the main trading platform where entertainment events and public executions were held has now become a tourist area with its own special atmosphere. Here is where to go for impressions: the square is literally flooded with numerous cafes, medieval taverns and souvenir shops. If your trip to Tallinn was during the winter months, it is worth visiting here at least for the sake of a festive Christmas tree and traditional Christmas markets.

The spire of the Tallinn Town Hall with a figure of Old Thomas

City Hall

The central point of the Old Town is the Gothic building, decorated with a single spire. The chronicle mention of the town hall dates back to the XIV century, although initially it was just a modest one-story structure. Over time, the design increased and rebuilt, finally taking a modern look. In 1530, a weather vane appeared on the building’s spire - the legendary Old Thomas. An interesting story is connected with this funny figure, which local people like to tell visitors of the city. Today Tallinn’s Town Hall is a museum that houses numerous works of medieval art.

The museum is open from Monday to Saturday, from 10:00 to 16:00 (from June 26 to August 31) and from 11:00 to 18:00 (from May 15 to June 25 and from September 1 to 15). In the winter months, the town hall does not accept visitors.

Dome Cathedral (Church of St. Virgin Mary)

The construction of the church of St. Virgin Mary was begun in the XIII century. This is the oldest Catholic church in Estonia, which preserved the tombstones of the first graves. It is in the Dome Cathedral that the ashes of the great navigator I. F. Kruzenshtern rest.

The church is open to parishioners and pilgrims from Monday to Sunday, from 9:00 to 18:00.

Church of the Blessed Virgin Mary in Tallinn Cathedral clock Interior decoration

Dominican Monastery

The Dominican Monastery is one of the oldest buildings in Tallinn, erected in 1245. Today, there are guided tours in its walls, during which visitors are introduced to the life and atmosphere of a medieval cloister. Here you can see its inhabitants, more precisely, actors dressed in monastic robes and playing out scenes from the everyday life of the monastery in front of the audience.

You can visit the object from Monday to Sunday from 10:00 to 17:00.

Tallinn Dominican Monastery

Church Oleviste

The building, once considered the highest church in Europe, has a 124-meter spire (in the XV century, its height was 154 m). Because of such a giant "lightning rod", the building was struck many times by lightning and burned three times. The place is especially popular with tourists because of the observation deck, which offers a fabulous view of the streets of old Tallinn.

The temple is open to the public daily from 10:00 to 18:00.

View of the spire of the church Oleviste

Niguliste Church

In the past, the Church of St. Nicholas, and today the branch of the Art Museum of Estonia has an impressive collection of rare church exhibits. By the way, fans of Notke Burnt’s talent are definitely worth a look here, since a fragment of his famous “Dance of Death” is kept in the walls of the Church of Niguliste.

The schedule of the museum: Wednesday-Sunday from 10:00 to 17:00.

Church of Niguliste Rink near the Church of Nigulista Cathedral of Alexander Nevsky in Tallinn

Alexander Nevsky Cathedral

The largest Orthodox church in Tallinn is equipped with an impressive bell tower, equipped with 11 bells. The building was built in 1900 in gratitude for the miraculous salvation of the family of Russian Emperor Alexander III during a train wreck.

The cathedral takes believers daily (Monday-Saturday from 8.15 to 10:00, Sunday from 7:00 to 12:00). Entrance to the temple for women with uncovered head, as well as in open clothes is prohibited.

Tallinn Legends

Almost every old city has its own distinctive feature that makes it special and unique. The main highlight of Tallinn is its legends. Here, every church spire, building or alley has its own fascinating stories. For example, Rataskaevu street, on which there is an old well.In immemorial times, a mermaid allegedly lived in it, drinking water from the townspeople. The burghers struggled to appease the hooligan by dumping cats into the well. But bad luck: the taste of water from such "offerings" only got worse. On the same street in the house at number 16 live the real ghosts. It is said that the devil himself rented a flat in a mansion.

Making a pilgrimage to the Dome Cathedral, pay attention to the tombstone located at the entrance. No celebrity here rests. Contrary to the Catholic tradition, the mortal remains of the local scum Otto Tuva are buried near the steps of the temple. The calculation of the hapless heel was ingeniously simple: after death he wanted to admire the beautiful female legs passing by his grave.

Note: lovers of costumed entertainment with a "full immersion" are encouraged to book a tour of the "Red Monk's Story". The mysterious medieval monk will lead everyone to the streets of the night city, revealing his terrible secrets.

Tallinn Museums

It is best to get acquainted with the urban history, culture and traditions of the local population in Tallinn museums.

Tallinn City Museum

In the Tallinn City Museum, you can trace the main historical landmarks of the Estonian capital, from ancient times to our modern times. The museum provides audio guide services.

Schedule: Monday-Wednesday from 10:00 to 17:00.

Tallinn City Museum

Museum "Kick-in-de-kek"

Museum "Kick-in-de-Kek" - a place that in no case should not miss the lovers of atmospheric excursions. The museum exhibition is located in an old military tower and occupies as many as 6 floors. The name of the structure translates as "look into the kitchen." A strange phrase at first glance is explained very simply: in ancient times, the guards had the opportunity to observe the life of the inhabitants of nearby houses directly from the fortress loopholes.

The museum is open from Tuesday to Sunday, from 10:00 to 17:30.

Museum "Kick-in-de-kek"

Rocca Al Mare Museum

Rocca al Mare is an amazing open-air museum, which recreates Estonian life of the XVII-XVIII centuries. The place is located in a forested area, so here you can rent a bike or book a horse-drawn carriage ride. After enjoying the picturesque views, you can relax a bit and have a meal in a tavern, specializing in national dishes.

Opening hours: from 10:00 to 17:00 daily.

Rocca al Mare Museum or Estonian Open Air Museum

Miia-Milla-Manda Children's Museum

Miia-Milla-Manda Children's Museum

The museum exposition Miia-Milla-Manda is focused on visitors from 3 to 11 years old and is devoted to nature, children's friendship, as well as the problem of choosing a profession. Kids in the form of a game are invited to try on different roles, try to put some of the exhibits into action, etc.

The museum is waiting for young guests from 12:00 to 18:00, from Tuesday to Sunday.

KUMU Art Museum

If you are still unfamiliar with Estonian art, the museum exposition will correct this misunderstanding. In KUMU there was a place for both the representatives of the classical trend and the masterpieces of modern artists.

The museum receives visitors from Thursday to Sunday, from 11:00 to 18:00.

KUMU Art Museum Entrance to the Tallinn House of the Blackheads

Architectural objects

Tallinn is a place where even an ordinary walk through the city streets can turn into an incredible journey. Gothic castles with unbreakable stone walls, baroque air palaces, compact burgher houses under tiled roofs - the legacy of past epochs reminds of itself, whatever part of the Old Town you may be.

House of the Brotherhood of Blackheads

Entrance to the Tallinn House of the Blackheads

The modest building with bas-reliefs on Pikk Street belonged to the merchant fraternity. The trade union was formed in the XIV century and existed until the XX century. The room had a rich decoration, which after the transfer of the house to the municipal property of the city was transferred to the Tallinn Museum.

Toompea Castle

The main attraction of the Upper Town - castle-fortress Toompea - is located at the very top of the hill of the same name. The building, built in the XIII century, perfectly preserved. Today, on its territory sits the Estonian Parliament. When visiting the castle, do not miss the opportunity to climb its observation deck to admire the outskirts of Tallinn. By the way, the most spectacular view of the fortress opens in the evening when the external illumination of the building is turned on.

Toompea Castle is open to the public from Monday to Thursday, from 10:00 to 16:00.

Toompea Castle Toompea Castle in winter

Fat Margaret and the Great Sea Gate

The city fortifications, once built to protect the port, eventually turned into monumental reminders of the military past of Tallinn. Exactly the same was the fate of the Great Sea Gate and the tower Fat Margaret, so named because of too immense size. At different times, an armory and a prison were located in the tower premises. Today, the building serves as a museum, showing visitors exhibits related to the maritime theme.

Fat Margaret Tower in Tallinn Great Sea Gate in Tallinn

Parks of Tallinn

You can take a break from the hustle and bustle of the big city and admire the beauty of nature in Tallinn’s parks and gardens.

Kadriorg Palace and Park Ensemble

Palace and Park Kadriorg

An elegant Italian-style palace was built by order of Peter the Great for his wife Catherine Alekseevna. Today, the well-groomed area of ​​the complex houses restoration workshops, and the palace building houses some of the exhibits from the Estonian Art Museum. The park is planted mostly with lindens, chestnuts and lilacs. In 2011, a Japanese garden was opened here, the project of which was made by a famous landscape designer from Kyoto.

Monument to the battleship "Mermaid"

In the area of ​​the Kadriorg park there is a monument to the battleship Rusalka, which sank in 1893 in the region of Helsinki.

Schedule Kadriorg palace and park ensemble: from Thursday to Sunday from 10:00 to 17:00, on Wednesdays from 10:00 to 20:00.

Garden of the danish king

The history of the garden of the Danish king in Tallinn is connected with an ancient legend. The legend says that it was at this place during one of the battles that the Danes descended from the sky their national flag. In memory of the miracle of the park was planted, which is preserved to this day.

Garden of the danish king

Tallinn Botanical Garden

Huge greenhouses and greenhouses, which collected more than 2,400 species of rare plants, settled in the valley of the Pirita River. The garden is divided into several natural zones: tropics, subtropics, desert. He is known for having a stunning collection of garden flowers (roses, tulips, rhododendrons).

Botanical Garden welcomes guests daily from 10:00 to 16:00.

Tallinn Botanical Garden

And further…

Having enough of the inspection of architectural monuments and wandering around the shady avenues of Kadriorg in plenty, you can change the situation for a while and enter the Tallinn Zoo. Here, on the area of ​​89 hectares, more than 350 species of animals live, the acquaintance with which is unlikely to leave anyone indifferent.

Tallinn Zoo

Thrill seekers are advised to indulge in descending underground tunnels. The system of secret passages was equipped by the Swedes. Galleries were used to communicate with distant bastions: usually they were used to deliver weapons and provisions. Despite the fact that during the Second World War, the tunnels were comparatively equipped, and later they even had electricity, some parts of the underground labyrinth still retain their original, frankly gloomy appearance.

Tallinn underground catacombs

Once in the Kloostrimets microdistrict, you should look at the Tallinn TV Tower. Officially, the building is considered closed, but photographed against its background is not yet prohibited. In the summer months you can visit the Singing Field - a symbol of the "singing revolution".

Tallinn TV Tower Concert at the Tallinn Singing Field

Tallinn Card (Tallinn Card)

To save money on the purchase of museum tickets and public transport, you should purchase a Tallinn Card in advance. The document provides the right to free visits to museum exhibitions and trips around the city. With the Tallinn Card you can get a discount in a restaurant or shop. Cards have a different validity period (6, 24, 48 and 72 hours) and are sold at the airport, tourist centers and hotels. Prices - from 90 CZK for a six-hour card, for children 2 times cheaper. More on the official site.

Urban transport

The most common public transport in Tallinn are buses and trams (more than 68 routes). If you wish, you can take a ride through the city streets by tram or trolley bus. Local tickets are of two types: with a fixed number of trips (10) or a limited period of validity (1, 2, 24, 48, 72 and 120 hours). You can buy them at any newsstand. A more comfortable option is a city taxi, which you can catch on the street or call by phone.

Tram in Tallinn Taxi near the airport Velotaksi

Where to eat in Tallinn

Street Cafe

Since the main goal of local institutions is to attract tourists, the emphasis in their menu is made on "medieval food". Modern interpretations of old-fashioned recipes, complemented by a colorful "antiqued" setting - this is the main feature of Tallinn cafes.

To the note: Estonian cuisine is a conditional concept, since the long-term influence of Denmark, the Teutonic Order, and subsequently Russia, could not but affect the local culinary traditions. So do not be in a hurry to be surprised if in Tallinn restaurants you are offered to taste dishes that are easy to find in any Russian or German cafe.

Adherents of gourmet food is worth a look at MEKK. The restaurant specializes in adapted versions of national dishes. Famous for its culinary masterpieces and dominic. The institution is located in a historic building near the Town Hall Square. For a pleasant atmosphere, it is better to go to Peppersack (the name of the restaurant means “pepper bag”). The place is purely tourist, but the food here is tasty and satisfying.

Restaurant MEKK Restaurant Dominic

It is easy to arrange a celebration of the abdomen and in local pubs, the most famous of which are Hell Hunt and Beer House. Pleasant and cozy places known for excellent cuisine and the fact that they produce their own brands of beer. Fans of stronger drinks can book a table at the Gloria Wine Cellar. Well, sit for coffee and dessert is best in Maiasmokk Cafe. The institution has an interesting history and is famous for its magnificent pastries. By the way, among tourists it has become a little tradition to take away tasty souvenirs from here, in the form of liquor or local sweets.

Pub Hell Hunt Gloria Wine Cellar Maiasmokk Cafe Towers Swissotel Tallinn

Where to stay

Tallinn is a city that is happy for tourists with any budget. In the Estonian capital, there are more than 600 hotels, ranging from luxury five-star apartments, ending with youth hostels, overnight in which will cost a very modest amount. Hotel Telegraf and Swissotel Tallinn are among the most high-profile. Both institutions have an impressive number of rooms and are able to offer their customers high quality service. Traveling with animals should pay attention to St. Petersbourg Hotel. The place is located in the historical part of the city, not far from the Baltic Railway Station. Four-star service is provided by hotels located in the center of Tallinn, such as Palace, Merchants House, Old House, My City.

For those who are interested in comfortable conditions for a reasonable price, there are a variety of three-star options, like Go Hotel Shnelli, Metropol, St. Barbara, Hotel Bern. All of them are located not far from the historical center - the Old Town, which is very convenient if the purpose of the trip is an excursion. In the same area it is easy to find a decent hostel (Viru Backpakers, The Knight House, Old Tallinn Y ​​Hostel, The Hideway).

Panorama of Tallinn

Special offers for hotels

How to get there

Tallinn Station

There are several ways to get to the capital of Estonia. The fastest and most convenient is the plane. Regular flights from Moscow (Sheremetyevo, Domodedovo, Vnukovo) go to Tallinn. In addition, there are several flights from St. Petersburg (with transfer).

Preferred ground transportation can opt for the bus route. The buses Express Express and BalticShuttle go from the northern capital to Tallinn.

If you like unhurried travel - buy a train ticket to Tallinn. You can go on it from Moscow or St. Petersburg. By the way, the Tallinn railway station is located very close to the Old Town.

Another way available to residents of the northern capital is the ferry departing from Helsinki.

Low Price Calendar

House of the Brotherhood of Blackheads

House of the Brotherhood of Blackheads - a building in Tallinn, where the residence of the Brotherhood of Blackheads was located since 1530. Today, various events take place in this house, from excursions to all the rooms of the building to evenings of classical music. The interior of the house in the neoclassical style that we see today is the result of the 1908 restructuring. The house itself and its interior can be viewed independently, without a guided tour.

Brotherhood of Blackheads

The Brotherhood of Blackheads was founded in 1399. It consisted of young unmarried merchants who were bound by the charter and who obeyed specially developed rules. It was not easy to get into the brotherhood, because it was one of the best social elevators of that time for trade people. The Brotherhood called itself by the name of St. Mauritius. He was a black Christian saint from Africa. Blackheads were known only in Riga and Tallinn, where they gained significant influence.


Initially, the Blackheads rented houses on the streets of Vienna and Kullasepp, and in 1530 bought the building that belonged to the chairman of the city master Johan Viant, and rebuilt it in the Renaissance style. Today, this building can be easily found walking along Pikk Street in the direction of the Sea Gate. On the right side of the street stands the house at number 26 with magnificent sculptural reliefs. The main decoration of the building is the magnificently decorated portal, created in 1597 by the architect and sculptor Arent Passer.

Above the portal, on the stone slab, the coat of arms of the Brotherhood is carved - two heraldic lions support a shield depicting the head of St. Mauritius. The house is crowned with a triangular gable, edged with volutes (stone curls). On the gable, right under the roof are two allegorical bas-reliefs symbolizing Peace and Justice, and above all this is an image of Jesus Christ. Between the window openings on the second floor there are Gothic plates depicting horses knight on horses, and on the frieze between the second and the first tier is the coat of arms of the Hanseatic cities, including the heraldic symbol of Russian Novgorod, which was also a member of the trade union, the Hansa. On triangular pediments crowning the windows of the first floor, there are carved portraits of the Polish monarch in stone Izmund III and his wife Anna of Austria Antique furniture and paintings belonging to the Brotherhood of Blackheads can be seen in the Tallinn City Museum.

Bachelor revels of the Brotherhood of Blackheads

Once in the House of the Brotherhood of Blackheads, a drunken bachelor life raged. In addition to major celebrations, the merchants every day organized the so-called pfenning binges - they discussed current affairs, played cards, drank beer. The Livonian chronicler Balthazar Russov reports that the Blackheads introduced the custom of setting up a Christmas tree on the Town Hall Square. Young merchants and girls made round dances around the tree, and then set fire to a fir tree so that it burned brightly. Only twice a year - during the Easter and Christmas festivities - new members could join the Brotherhood. In 1711, Peter I celebrated Christmas in Tallinn, and, despite the fact that the Russian tsar was already engaged to Catherine, the Blackheads accepted him into their Brotherhood.

Practical information

Address House of the Blackheads: Tallin, Pikk 26

Phone: +372 631 31 99

Opening hours: 10.00-19.00

Official website: //

Park Kadriorg (Yekaterinental)

Park Kadriorg - Baroque palace and park ensemble in Tallinn. Ekaterinental received its name in honor of Peter I's spouse - Catherine I. Translated from German, this name means - "Catherine valley".


During the Northern War (1700-1721), Estonia was annexed to Russia.Revel capitulated in the autumn of 1710, and in December 1711, Peter I, together with Catherine, visited the city for the first time. The king liked the surroundings of Lasnamägi. From here, from a cliff, a view of the city and the harbor was being opened. In 1714, Peter bought part of their summer estate from the widow Drenteln for 3,500 thalers into state ownership. The preserved house of this estate was put in order and adapted to the residence of the king. This house is now known as "Peter's house". The modest house was convenient for spending the night and for exploring the picturesque surroundings, but it was not modest with the modesty of its size and design.

The laying of the new palace and park ensemble was started on July 25, 1718 by order of Peter I. The project was made up by Italian Niccolò Michetti. The construction work was led by his assistant, Gaetano Chiaveri. In 1720, at the insistence of Michetti, Mikhail Zemtsov was sent to Revel, who headed the construction of the ensemble for four years according to the designs and instructions of Michetti. Since the spring of 1721 and until the end of construction, all the work was led by Zemtsov alone.

Already in the autumn of 1719, the side pavilions (wings) were covered with tiles, and by the spring of 1721 the interior decoration was completed. Shortly after this, Peter I and Catherine lived here for a while. The walls of the main building began to be erected in 1720, and the following year it was built under the roof. The capitals of the facade of hewn stone, the console and other details of the stone ornaments were made by the Riga sculptor Heinrich von Bergen. In July 1724, during the last visit of Peter I to Revel, most of the interior of the main building was still in the woods, the main work ended mainly by 1727.

According to legend, when building a building, Peter I personally put three bricks in its wall. Later, when the outer surface of the walls began to be covered with plaster, the builders left the “royal” bricks unpainted. These three bricks, in the corner pilaster of the north wing of the palace, remain unpainted to this day.

After the October Revolution, the Revel Council of Workers 'and Soldiers' Deputies was located in the Kadriorg Palace.

In 1921-1929 and 1946-1991, the palace was the main building of the Estonian Art Museum. From 1929 to 1940, the residence of the state elder (since 1938 - president) of Estonia was located in the palace. Currently, the Kadriorg Palace has a branch of the Estonian Art Museum - the Kadriorg Art Museum.

What to see

Like the Italian villas, the Kadriorg palace and park ensemble consists of a palace erected on a dais and two pavilions. The facade of the main building is decorated with a projection rizalit with a central portal leading to the lobby. A cenotaph with a Russian coat of arms and an anchor is installed in the wall of the lobby. In the middle of the slab, a text in Latin is engraved, the translation of which says: "Peter I, by the grace of God, the king of all Russia, ordered to build a house in Revel in July 1718 on this spot." Also in the lobby draw attention to three sculptures-copies: Venus de Milo (the work of G. Voss, 1859) and two lions by A. What are the ones that stand in the Cathedral of Sts. Peter in Rome. The suite of palace rooms occupies two floors. The main pride of the palace is the Great, or White Hall, richly decorated with stucco. The lower part of its walls is framed by pilasters crowned with delicate capitals with volutes and flower wreaths, and the upper part rhythmically dismembers the decorative vanes.

In the park there are ponds, fountains with gazebos, fancy flower beds and a rose garden. Alleys are laid from the palace, and on the island in the middle of the Swan Pond in the summer they organize open-air concerts. In 2011, Japanese landscape architect Mason Sone set up a Japanese garden in the park with rhododendrons, azaleas and irises. In the immediate vicinity of the Kadriorg Palace are the residence of the President of Estonia, the house-museum of Peter I and the Kumu Art Museum, covering the art of Estonia from the XVIII century to the present day.Peter’s two-story house is furnished in the spirit of the times of Peter I, the king’s personal belongings were preserved — a table with the Baltic map laid out on it, the layout of the Shlisselburg ship, two secretarial cabinets, etc. In 1714, Peter I bought this house and its lands from the widow landowner Drenteln for 3500 thalers. While the Kadriorg Palace was being built, the All-Russian Emperor was content with a modest burgher’s dwelling. Returning to his residence a few years later, Peter I expressed surprise that the Revels did not go to the new park. The guard officer reported to the king that the commandant had banned citizens from walking around the royal possessions. The very next day in Tallinn, under the drumming, the imperial will was announced: all residents of the city are allowed to visit Kadriorg and enjoy its beauty.

Tallinn Town Hall Square (Raekoja plats)

Tallinn Town Hall Square - The center of the lower quarter of the Old City in the ring of parapet walls, erected in the Middle Ages to protect against marauders. Once used for market trading and public executions, this cobbled square is located east of Toompea, and the long and steep Pikk jalg street leads to the castle.

general information

Tallinn’s most beautiful and “photogenic” square is full of tourists and locals day and night. The town hall located on the south side of the square is a worthy example of the Baltic architectural heritage.

The old Town Hall Pharmacy in the northeast corner of the square has a long history. It was built in 1422 and has operated continuously since then. Ointments and powders were replaced by more modern medicines, but the interior has been preserved.

On the streets around the square you can see the best examples of baroque architecture in the Baltic. This part of the city, with its many boutiques and art galleries, has also become the most fashionable shopping center in Tallinn. Walk on foot to fully appreciate the beauty of this place.

To the west of Toompea, gardens and parks stretch like a crescent around the fortifications. In the summer, you can go to the Komandandy garden and the more spacious Hirve and Toompark parks with a landscaped pond, you can go on a picnic or just walk.

Tallinn Town Hall (Tallinna raekoda)

Tallinn Town Hall - a medieval monument of architecture in the Gothic style located on the Town Hall Square in the center of the Old Town of Tallinn. This is the best preserved medieval town hall in Northern Europe. If earlier only representatives of the nobility who solved issues related to the life of the city could get here, then today the doors of the Tallinn Town Hall are open to all comers.


The Tallinn Town Hall is already 600 years old, and the first documentary references to it refer to 1248.

Initially, the Tallinn Town Hall was a one-story building of limestone, but with the flourishing of Revel (the name of Tallinn until 1919), as the trading house "Council House" began to expand.

Overseas masters completed the arcade, ceremonial halls for receptions, and crowned the building with a representative turret.

The Gothic town hall, meeting the requirements of a rich Hanseatic city, has not lost its former charm to this day.

In the Middle Ages, the city council, consisting of local grandee - ratmans, sat within the walls of the building. The symbols that have survived to our days open the veil of secrecy over the decision makers.

The facade of the town hall is decorated with drains, made in the form of dragon heads with a golden crown, "guarding" the city power.

The magistrate’s hall on the 2nd floor is today used as a concert hall. Members of the city government decided all questions of life in Revel - from the size of tax rates to clothes that could be worn by representatives of various classes. Within the walls of the former secret room is a small museum of torture, reflecting the medieval mores.

The Legend of Old Thomas

In 1530, a weather vane was installed on the tower of the town hall in the form of a figure of an old warrior, nicknamed Old Thomas. As the legend goes, in the Middle Ages in Tallinn there lived the son of a poor widow named Thomas.He diligently practiced archery and every year eagerly waited for archery competitions held in spring in front of the Great Sea Gate. The shooter who managed to get into a tiny parrot figure mounted on a high pole received a silver cup as a reward. Poor Thomas pierced the target with an arrow, and the wooden parrot fell to the ground. The wise city ruler, marveling at the dexterity of Thomas, took the young man into his army. Faithfully, Thomas served the sovereign until old age, more than once showing heroism in the battles of the Livonian War. After Thomas’s death, Tallinn’s people immortalized it in the form of a small figure on the steeple of the town hall. Since then, the legendary city guard Old Thomas has been guarding Tallinn for 500 years.

What to see inside

Basement and sales area

The basement hall of the town hall was used as a wine cellar (veinikelder). The magistrate wanted the sale of wine under his strict control and, above all, in the wine cellar. Excise on wine gave a great income to the city treasury. In the Middle Ages, wine was considered a valuable drink, consumed only during major holidays or for church needs. In the basement hall are the oldest windows of the town hall - these archaic windows can be recognized by stepped window-sills. At one end of the room there is an old chimney mouth.

The room located above the basement hall, the trading hall in the old accounting books was also called the wine cellar, although it was obviously used as a place for storing and presenting more valuable goods.

The most luxurious premises are located on the main floor of the town hall. This is the burgher hall, or lobby, and the most important premise of the town hall is the magistrate’s hall.

Burgher Hall

The burgher hall, or vestibule, served as a room in the Middle Ages for ceremonial receptions and celebrations of citizens. Itinerant musicians and actors who arrived in the city also performed here.

The burgher hall is characterized by an abundance of light. The pylons bearing the Gothic vaulted hall adorn the Christmas-tree pattern rich in colors. The original painting of the pylons is visible on both sides of the column from the side of the main staircase. In the hall, the attention is drawn to the magnificent city emblems and the inscription above the door leading to the magistrate’s hall:

From the summer of the Lord 1651. Ratman, whoever you are, entering this house to do your duty, leave behind all personal troubles: anger, resentment, enmity, friendship, flattery; devote yourself and your concerns to society, for what you are to others is fair or unfair, so you will stand before the Lord’s judgment.

Magistrate's hall

The hall of the magistrate is the most important premise of the town hall. Here the city magistrate, or city government was going. For the first time the mention of the city magistrate is found in the charter of the Danish king Eric V of May 15, 1248. In their decisions, the Reval magistrate proceeded from the widely used law in the Hanseatic cities of Lubeck law. The magistrate resolved all the issues in Reval: from taxes to jewelry and clothing, establishing who could wear what. In the Middle Ages they did not pay remuneration to the warriors, therefore only the wealthiest merchants - members of the Great Guild could be members of the magistrate. In the XV century, the magistrate consisted of fourteen ratmans and four burgomasters, or magistrates' chairmen.

Since the magistrate also owned the judiciary within the city, the magistrate’s hall was also used as a courtroom. This appointment is emphasized by the red color of the walls in the hall and the mural with a judicial theme.

In the hall of the magistrate is surprised by the abundance of characters. The most important works of art in the town hall talk about morality, justice, honesty, wisdom and justice. Six pictures of the Lubeck artist Johann Aken on biblical themes relating to the 17th century are directly related to justice.


The kitchen prepared meals for big holidays. In the kitchen corner there was a large, chambered chimney, supported by a stone corner pillar. The chimney, demolished in the XIX century, was reconstructed in 2004.

In the kitchen equipment is also a lavatory - with a small window niche for washing hands. A long chute of natural stone opened right on the street. The town hall received water from a well located on the market square, rainwater was also collected in large barrels.

At the end of the kitchen wall was a toilet for the warriors. The medieval toilet system was uniform throughout the house and is relatively well preserved until now. When entering the tower, pay attention to the toilet room of the tower watchman.

Treasury Department

Each Ratman was assigned precisely defined responsibilities related to the management of one of the areas of urban life. Ratmans engaged in city accounting and economic issues worked in the city treasury. Later, this representative room was turned into the office of the mayor of the city.

Two of the paintings in the city treasury are gifts to the Tallinn City Hall. This is a portrait of the Swedish Queen Christina in childhood and a portrait of Charles XI in her youth. Other paintings, also depicting the crowned faces of Europe, are included in the collection of the Brotherhood of Blackheads. In the corner of the hall from the side of the square is visible part of the medieval floor.

Practical information

The schedule of the town hall: from June 27 to August 31, from Monday to Saturday, from 10:00 to 16:00.

Entrance fee: 4 EUR, for large families - discount.

On visiting at another time of the year you need to agree in advance.

Schedule of the Town Hall Tower: from May 1 to September 15, from Monday to Sunday, from 11:00 to 18:00, entrance fee: 3 EUR.

In the presence of Tallinn Card - entrance tickets are free.

Niguliste kirik Church

Niguliste Church - a former Lutheran church in the Old Town of Tallinn. This temple, named after the patron saint of all sailors, St. Nicholas, was founded by German merchants in the 13th century. The Niguliste Museum is one of the four branches of the Estonian Art Museum.

general information

The temple is one of the few that survived the troubled time of reformation. However, he suffered greatly during the Second World War. Although in 1943 many valuables were prudently removed, in March 1944 a fire broke out from a bomb hit, which destroyed almost all remaining works of art in the church. After a large-scale restoration, a concert hall was opened in the Church of Niguliste, and then a branch of the Art Museum of Estonia. The basis of the exposition of the Church of Nigulista are medieval altars, silverware, tombstones, statues, wooden confessional.

The doors of the main altar of the 15th century are opened three times a year (December 6, May 9 and November 1), and then visitors admire the painted wooden statues of Christ, the Virgin Mary, saints and apostles.

Museum and Concert Hall

Currently, the temple is a historical museum of the sacred, that is, church art. It presents exhibits relating to more than 700 years of the history of Estonia. Here you can see old coat of arms and candlesticks, wood carving and a collection of precious metals, altars and luxurious tombstones. All these items previously decorated the temples of Estonia.

Niguliste is a branch of the Estonian Art Museum. The Church of Niguliste also keeps a surviving fragment of a picture by the Lübeck master Bernt Notke in the chapel of St. Anthony "The Dance of Death": a preacher in the pulpit, Death, who heads the dance in which everyone is involved: the emperor, the baby, and the Pope of Rome. Under the image is a manuscript with a poetic text in Low German. It begins with the words of the preacher, and then Death addresses all living beings, and then talks to each one individually. The picture shows not only the power of Death over people, but the equality of all before death: "Mors omnia aequat".

Restored this canvas in the 1960s in Moscow, employees of the Central Art Restoration Workshop. Leaving the church Niguliste, go to the southern wall, where the linden grows - the oldest tree in the city. And here we must certainly come to listen to the organ concert.

Excellent temple acoustics allows for concerts here.

Interesting facts and legends

It is known that the temple was not injured in the era of the Reformation. At the same time, there is a legend that on the night of September 14, 1524 an enraged crowd defeated the churches of St. Olav, Pyhawayma and St. Catherine in the Dominican Monastery and then approached the Church of St. Nicholas. However, the abbot of the temple prudently sealed with lead door locks. This barrier was enough for the anger of the crowd to die away, the passions subsided, and the church, becoming Lutheran, retained its rich decoration.

Not far from the south side of the temple is a three-hundred-year-old linden tree, the oldest tree in the whole district. According to legend, a famous church chronicler was buried under a linden tree, who died during a plague epidemic. At the end of the church street there is a usual one-story house in which the executioner used to live, who had a huge sword depicting a wheel and gallows on the blade. At that time, citizens were afraid to even pass by this house. The sword itself was not preserved, but its exact copy is located in the Town Hall building.

Mode of operation and cost of tickets

  • Mode of operation - daily, except Mondays and Tuesdays from 10-00 to 17-00
  • Not working on public holidays
  • Ticket price € 3.20

The temple is located two minutes walk from the Town Hall Square, it is easy to find it by the ornate dome, crowned with a weather vane. The church is visible from almost anywhere in Vyshgorod. From Toompea hill to the temple you can walk along the street-staircase Luhike Yalg. Tallins say that all roads lead to the church Niguliste.

Oleviste Church (Oleviste kirik)

Church Oleviste - one of the most interesting buildings in Tallinn. In the Middle Ages, no buildings of equal height were observed on the territory of the entire European space. Named after the Norwegian king Olaf Haraldsson (who was canonized for the conversion of Northern Scandinavia to Christianity), Oleviste church was built in 1267, but its interior dates back to the middle of the XIX century. In 1820 it burned down with a thunderbolt and became 16 m lower after perestroika. The fire also destroyed the rich old interior, which became more modest after restoration.

Today, the height of the Church of Oleviste is 123.7 meters. According to the rules in force in Tallinn, no new building in the city center can be higher than the spire of this temple, and therefore the spire of the Oleviste church is still one of the notable landmarks of Tallinn.


The temple played an important role in the history of Estonia. For example, it was from here that the Reformation began in the city.

Initially, the building was built for the needs of the Catholic Church. It received its name in honor of the Norwegian king Olaf Haraldsson, who after death was canonized. The first mention of Oleviste dates back to 1267. According to available data, then its height reached 159 meters, and the spire towering above the other houses of Old Tallinn served as a kind of guide for sailors.

It is worth noting that the metal spire has repeatedly attracted lightning to itself. As a result, the church burned to the ground three times, but was inevitably restored. It is noteworthy that the glow from the fire was visible even from the shores of neighboring Finland. In any case, such information has reached our days.

The most large-scale reconstruction of the Oleviste church building was carried out in the XV century. In its course, new choirs were built, and the longitudinal part was renovated, which was eventually turned into a basilica with four-sided pillars. In the middle of the XVI century, a chapel of the Virgin Mary was added to the temple.

Today, Oleviste is used both for its intended purpose, combining eight metropolitan evangelical churches, and as a museum. On the roof of the building there is a viewing platform, which, during the warm season, under favorable weather conditions, you can climb to enjoy the unique breathtaking view. The path to the top runs along a narrow spiral staircase with uneven steps. I must admit that you can't call him light.

Practical information

Pikk, 48. Tel .: (372) 641-22-41
Open: Tue-Fri 10.00-14.00
Services (in Estonian): Sun 10 am and 5 pm, Mon 5.30 am, Thu 6.30 pm, Fri 6 pm
The entrance is free.

Toompea Castle (Toompea loss)

Toompea Castle - A medieval fortress on the eponymous hill in the center of Tallinn. The castle was originally called the Revel Castle. The Russians called this citadel Kolyvan. Today, the castle is considered one of the largest historical architectural ensembles not only in Estonia, but also in the Baltic States as a whole. Toompea is on the UNESCO World Heritage List.

History of the fortress

The plot of land known to Russians as Vyshgorod (Upper Town) was destined to become the historical center of the future capital of Estonia. The place where Toompea stands today was occupied by a wooden fortification. This site was considered the largest in Estland. Peasants and artisans settled at the foot of the Upper Town, turning their settlement into an important shopping center.

After the Danes captured Estland, the wooden structure on Toompea hill was destroyed. Revel Castle was founded by King Waldemar II at the beginning of the XIII century on Toompea Hill in honor of his victory in the Battle of Lindanise. The castle for some time was in the hands of the Order of the Sword. However, by order of the Pope, the citadel was returned to the Danes. The next owner of Toompea was the Teutonic Order, to which Denmark sold fortifications with all adjacent territories. The Teutons resold their acquisition of the Livonian Order. Each new owner sought to rebuild the fortress in accordance with their tastes.

In the XVI century, the castle passed into the hands of the Swedes. However, unlike the Danes, the Swedes did not consider Toompea Hill to be a strategically convenient place to put a bridgehead. The fortress lost the value of a defensive object. In the 18th century, Estland became part of the Russian Empire. Catherine II was going to place the government in the fortress. During the repair work was carried out another restructuring. This was the last major change to date in the castle architecture.

Estonians themselves for a long time called the citadel a Danish castle (in Estonian Taani linn). Over time, the local name of the fortress gave the name of today's Estonian capital. In 1997, Toompea was inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List and received the status of a historic landmark. To this day, the castle has been preserved in almost perfect condition. It is used to house the Parliament of the Republic of Estonia.


There is a fictional story of the appearance of the castle, according to which the grave of the legendary Estonian king Kalev is located near Toompea. After the death of the emperor, his wife, Queen Linda, wanted to perpetuate the memory of her beloved wife. She buried Kalev on a hill, and laid a stone mound above the grave, which later became a fortress.

Another legend is connected with the foundation of the citadel. King Waldemar II hunted near Toompea. Roe deer, for which he was chasing, rushed down the hill, so as not to become a victim of a foreign invader. The king was so delighted with the courage of the animal that he laid the city on top of Toompea in memory of the brave roe. The new settlement was named Reval ("roe deer fell"), transformed into Reval.

A beautiful legend inspired Estonian sculptor Jaan Koort to create a sculpture of roe deer, established in 1929 near the ascent to the Town Hall Square from the railway station (Nunne street).

Fortress architecture

Initially, the citadel was a fortification with a single tower. However, when the castle fell into the hands of the Livonian Order, it was decided to build 3 more towers:

  • "Long Hermann" ("Long Warrior"). Presumably, the tower was named in honor of the hero of the Germanic epic. In the XVI century "Long Herman" was considered the highest watchtower on the Baltic coast. Today, every morning a flag is hoisted under the Estonian anthem.
  • "Crown of the earth". Appeared on the northeast corner of the citadel in the XV century.
  • "Grinder arrows." During the Livonian War, the tower was destroyed. It was restored only in the 20th century.

Tower "Reflect the enemy" was built with the first owners of the fortress. During repair work in 1767 it was liquidated. Nowadays, the governor’s palace occupies the place of the tower. Inside the castle ensemble is the parliament building. It appeared on the site of the burnt-down Convent House - a building erected in the Middle Ages.


You can inspect the castle from the outside at any time. Travelers who have visited Tallinn advise to admire the western facade and take pictures on its background. To see Toompea from the inside, you need to contact the travel agency. Despite the current functions of the fortress, tourists are allowed to explore the interior of the building. But this can be done only as part of the excursion group. Toompea is available for visits daily, except weekends, from 9.00 to 16.00 (on Fridays until 15.00). Sign up for a tour should be in advance, preferably 10 days before it. Lectures are given in Estonian, English and Russian. The group usually includes no more than 30-35 people.

It was recommended to plan your excursion to Toompea Castle on April 23, on the Open Day at the Riigikogu (Estonian Parliament). April 23, 1919 is considered the day when Estonia became an independent state. Guests of the castle will be allowed to attend open commission meetings and the Long Hermann tower, and talk with deputies. Tourists are expected to watch movies, dance and cooking national dishes. For children prepared a special program. The holiday ends with a concert.

How to get there

Finding Toompea Castle in the center of Tallinn is easy due to its location on the hill. Fortress address: Lossi plats, 1a. Open: Mon-Fri 10.00-16.00. Tel: (372) 631-63-45. Visit only as part of excursion groups.

Tartu City

Tartu - The second largest city in Estonia with a population of over 100,000 people. Tartu stands on the banks of the Emajõgi River and celebrates its millennium in 2030. The city is located 200 km south-east of Tallinn. Buses leave from Tallinn to Tartu every half hour, travel time is 2 hours 30 minutes without stopping. Two trains follow the same route every day. (travel time - about 4 hours).

general information

Tartu, known as Dorpat before the first period of Estonian independence, owes much to the merchants of the Hanseatic League, who brought wealth to the city, and to the Swedish king Gustav Adolf II, who founded the local university in 1632. The statue of the king, erected in 1992, says that the townspeople give him his due.

The university became the center of the cultural and intellectual life of Estonia and played a key role in the development of the national culture and literature of the XIX-XX centuries. The student population of 15,000 makes Tartu one of the busiest and youngest cities in Estonia.

The cobblestone-paved Town Hall Square in the center of the city is surrounded by buildings of the 18th century, including an elegant town hall with an ocher-pink facade, located on the west side.

Many city buildings were once wooden, and much of the Old City burned down in a fire in 1775, after which houses were built from more durable materials. Most of the remaining wooden structures were destroyed during World War II.

There are more than 20 museums and art galleries in Tartu, including under the auspices of several departments of the University of Tartu. Some of them deserve a visit, others are only interesting for specialists.

Sights of Tartu

City Museum

The city museum is located in one of the most attractive historical buildings of Tartu, built in 1790.

Pay attention to the scale model of Tartu 1940. (before the destruction caused by the bombings of the Second World War) and the collection of glassware, silver, watches and fabrics of the XVII century. (then Estonia was ruled by Sweden).

Narva maantee, 23
Tel .: (372) 746-19-11
Open: Tue-Sat 11 am-6 pm
paid entrance

Estonian National Museum

Founded in 1909, this museum offers an extensive and interesting exhibition of traditional Estonian costumes, handicrafts and photographs. The museum collection is divided into three parts. The first one called "Estonia: country, people, culture" is located in the main exhibition center. The second is kept at the Post Office Museum of the Estonian National Museum, which introduces visitors to the history of the postal service in Estonia. The museum exposition will be interesting mainly to philatelists.

Finally, the third part of the collection is exhibited in the museum complex, the Raadi mansion, where it is planned to move the Estonian National Museum in 2012. The building was built in the XVIII century. Baroque originally served as a museum. However, having suffered greatly during the Second World War, it was given under the headquarters of the Soviet air force. Currently, an exhibition of photographs and a collection of traditional Estonian wooden products are in the halls of the mansion. During the day, there are one-hour guided tours in English, German, Russian and Estonian.

The main exhibition center: J Kuperjanovi, 9. Tel .: (372) 735-04-45. Open: Tue-Sun 11am-6pm. Paid entrance.

Museum of Post: Ruutli, 15. Tel. (372) 730-07-75. Open: Wed-Sun 11 am-6 pm. Paid entrance. Raadi Mansion: Narva maantee, 177. Tel .: (372) 735-04-33. Open: Daily 7 am-10 pm. Specify the start time of the tour by phone or online.

KGB prison museum

This eerie reminder of the not-so-distant past, the building was the local headquarters of the Soviet State Security Committee. Prison cells are preserved in their original state, while photographs and documents preserve the memory of Estonians tortured, executed, or exiled to Soviet labor camps.

Riia, 15b. Tel: (372) 746-17-17. // linnamuuseum. tartu. her. Open: Tue-Sat 11 am-4 pm. Paid entrance.

House-Museum of the citizen of the XIX century.

This branch of the City Museum reproduces the atmosphere of the everyday life of a citizen of the 1830s, who belonged to the middle class. The living room, dining room and office of the owner are furnished in the Biedermeier pro-German style typical of this period.

Jaani, 16. Tel. (372) 736-15-45. // Open: Apr - Sep. Wed-Sun 11.00-17.00; Oct - March Wed-Sun 10.00- 15.00. Paid entrance.

Oscar Luts Museum

Here was the home of the respected Estonian pharmacist and writer Oscar Luts. (1887-1953)whose works describe the rural and urban life of Estonia at the beginning of the 20th century. The permanent exhibition is dedicated to his life and work.

Riia, 38. Tel .: (372) 746-10-30. // Open: Wed-Sat 11.00-17.00. Paid entrance.

Church of St. John (Jaani Kirk)

The Church of St. John is a remarkable example of northern Gothic architecture, with a square brick bell tower of the XIV century. and unique terracotta sculptures.

Many of them were damaged or destroyed during World War II, and the church itself was slowly destroyed until 1989, when its restoration began. Now about 1000 of the 2000 images of saints and martyrs are replaced or restored. The copper spire of the church and the bell were restored in 1999.

Lutsu, 16-3. Tel: (372) 744-22-29. [email protected] Open: Mon-Sat 10.00-19.00, Sun 10.00-13.00. Paid entrance.
The bell tower is open: Mon and Fri 12.30-19.00, Wed, Thu and Sat 11.00-19.00. Paid entrance.

Museum of Art

This crooked old mansion on the eastern side of the Town Hall Square was once the home of General M. B. Barclay de Tolly. (1761-1818), one of the creators of the victory of Russian weapons over Napoleon, who invaded Russia in 1812

Now hundreds of works by contemporary Estonian artists are on display and various seasonal exhibitions are held.

Raekoja plats, 18. Tel .: (372) 744-10-80. Open: Wed-Sat 12.00-18.00, Sun 11.00-18.00. Paid entrance.

Brewery museum

In Tartu is one of the largest Estonian breweries, which produces the popular brand of light beer A Le Coq (first introduced to Estonia by an Englishman at the end of the 19th century). The exposition, located on five floors, presents several hundred items related to brewing, bottling and other aspects of the beer industry. Sightseeing tour ends with a tasting.

Tdhtvere, 56/62. Tel: (372) 744-97-11. Excursions: Thu 14.00 and Sat 10.00, 12.00 and 14.00. Paid entrance.

Museum of the Song Festival

The museum exposition is dedicated to the ancient tradition of song festivals and mass choral singing, which originated from the Middle Ages until the present day, including the "Song Revolution" of 1988.

Jaani, 14. Tel. (372) 746-10-20.// Open: Apr - Sep. Tue-Sun 11 am - 6 pm; Oct - March Tue-Sun 10 am - 3 pm

Art Museum of the University of Tartu

This oldest museum in Estonia, founded in 1803 and formerly known as the Museum of Antiquity, was unsuccessfully renamed. His collection consists mainly of copies of ancient Greek sculptures and several Egyptian sarcophagi.

Of greater interest is a collection of several hundred wonderful Russian Orthodox icons.

Ulikooli, 18. Tel .: (372) 737-53-84.
Open: Mon-Fri 11.00-17.00. Paid entrance. Excursion tours: Sat and Sun, by reservation only.

Botanical Garden of the University of Tartu

Founded in 1803, the University Botanical Garden boasts 57 species of palm trees, which are contained in the highest greenhouse in the Baltic region.

Of interest to overseas guests may be an ordinary garden with local plants.

Lai, 38/40. Tel: (372) 737-61-80.
Open: in the summer every day 7.00 - 21.00; in the winter every day 7.00-19.00. Paid entrance.

Historical Museum of the University of Tartu

The museum is dedicated to the history of the city from its foundation in 1603 to the present day. The exhibition includes paintings and photographs of important historical events. The museum is located in the former Peter and Paul Cathedral, an impressive building of the XIII century, heavily damaged during the conflicts of the XVI-XVII centuries. and lying in ruins before restoration under the auspices of the university in the XIX century.

Lossi, 25. Tel. (372) 737-56-77. Open: Wed-Sun 11 am-5 pm Paid entrance.

Toy Museum

A charming collection of toys, dolls and puppets will bring pleasure to both children and adults. There are toys from all over the world, traditional dolls from Finland, Hungary and Estonia, fancy stage puppets and a working model of the railway.

Lutsu, 8. Tel .: (372) 736-15-50. Open: Wed-Sat 11.00- 18.00. Paid entrance.

Tartu surroundings

Tartu is surrounded by river valleys, forests and swampy lowlands, located between the two largest lakes in Estonia: Peipsi and Võrtsjärv.

The area is littered with old manors and picturesque villages, and Lake Peipsi - the scene of the historic battle between the militia of Prince Alexander Nevsky of Novgorod and the Teutonic knights - is one of the main attractions of the country.

Alatskivi Castle

The imposing XIX century building, stylized under the Middle Ages, looks quite funny against the background of Estonian nature. This is understandable, since the architect and owner Arved von Nolken borrowed the plan of Balmoral Castle, the Scottish residence of Queen Victoria, who made a deep impression on him during his visit to Scotland in the 1870s. The castle was built in 1885.

In the Soviet era, the kolkhoz rule was located here, so the interior had to be restored during restoration work, which ended in 2005. Now the castle has regained its former glory. 8 km south of the village of Kallaste, 200 km south-east of Tallinn. Tel: (372) 745-38-46.

Lake Peipsi (Peipsi)

Lake Peipsi (Chudskoye)The largest in Estonia and the fourth largest in Europe, has an area of ​​3555 km² and is characterized by amazing beauty. It is also of cultural interest, although there are still few tourists here. This is partly due to the position of the lake on the border between Estonia and Russia; during Soviet times, there was a protected border area here.

The question of the border remained unresolved until 2005, so Estonians were not in a hurry to develop tourism infrastructure and advertise Peipsi beauty. Those who with great difficulty still get to the lake, find here deserted sandy beaches, small fishing villages, reed beds, swamps and coastal forests full of animals and birds.

In the thirteenth century Lake Peipsi was the scene of one of the decisive battles that determined the history of the Baltic region: Novgorod Prince Alexander Nevsky defeated the Teutonic knights from the Livonian Order on the ice of the lake, which the Russians call Chudsky. This battle was immortalized by the Soviet director Sergei Eisenstein, who shot in "Alexander Nevsky".

From the XVIII century. Old Believers settled on the Estonian coast of Lake Peipsi, members of an Orthodox sect that separated from official Russian Orthodoxy and fled from religious persecution to the western outskirts of the Russian Empire. Their villages, including Kasepää, Paradise, Nina, Varna and Kolka, stretch for many kilometers along the coast. There is a good sandy beach near Kal-plast, the largest fishing village, which attracts many Estonians in summer.

30 km east of Tartu.

Lake Võrtsjärv (Vortsjarv)

The 40 km long lake with an area of ​​270 km² is the largest of all located within the country. Its maximum depth is only 6 m. The Emajõgi River, which flows from Võrtsjärva in the east, flows into Lake Peipsi and flows through the city of the same name. 40 km west of Tartu.

Estonian Aviation Museum

In the covered exhibition of this museum dedicated to the history of aviation in Estonia and around the world, more than 200 aircraft models are exhibited. Outside there are real vehicles, including Soviet MiG-21MF and Su-22M4 fighters, Iskra TS-11 training aircraft, Mi-8 and Mi-2RL helicopters, French Mirage IIIRS, Swedish Viggen -37 and others.

In 2010, the program to expand the museum’s exposition was completed, as a result of which the collection was replenished with 18 aircraft of historic importance. The program cost Estonia 50 million Estonian kroons.

Lange kula, Haaslava, 27 km from Tartu. Tel: (372) 502-67-12. Open: Apr - Nov. every day 10.00-18.00; Nov. - March every day 10.00-16.00 depending on the weather (pre-call for confirmation). Paid entrance.

Valga city

Valga - a city located almost on the border of Estonia with its southern neighbor Latvia. The border here is marked by a stream, more like a roadside ditch and separating Valga from the Latvian Valki. Valga is located on the main railway line between Tallinn and the Latvian capital Riga. There is little interesting for tourists, except for the District Museum with wax figures, old Estonian coins and banknotes and attributes of a nineteenth-century city bank. The first mention of the city dates back to 1286, under the name Valk. In Valga there are enterprises of light and woodworking industries.

Viljandi City

Viljandi, until 1919 - Fellin - a city in southern Estonia, once part of the Hanseatic League. Located 161 km from Tallinn, from Tartu - 81 km, from Pärnu - 97 km. It is the administrative center of Viljandima County in south-eastern Estonia. Viljandi is an ancient city in hilly southern Estonia, striking its tourists with the greenery of its streets, winding cobbled streets, picturesque nature and the old Hanseatic castle.


The first evidence of settlements on the site of modern Viljandi is dated to the 500th year BC. A written mention of the “Viljandi fortress” can be found in the comments of the Atlas of the World “Geography” of the Arab geographer Al-Idrisi, dated 1154th year.

Hanseatic merchants settled in Viljandi in the 14th century, and the spirit of Hanseatic times still reminds of itself every June. At this unusual time, people put on ancient costumes, open medieval fairs, organize exhibitions and organize mass celebrations.


Viljandi, in the perception of many Estonians, has long become the capital of folk music and is associated with the Viljandi festival held here every year. Within the framework of such a festival, which lasts for the last 4 days of June, in the city ruins of the Viljandi castle, in churches and other premises in the whole county, more than 100 fascinating concerts take place. This is the largest annual music festival in Estonia. However, this small city is extremely rich in other kinds of cultural events, such as: the festival of early music, the Hanseatic Days, the festival of dance for young people, the Mulgi Rally, the winter festival of folk dance and the festival of puppet theaters ”Theater in a Suitcase”.And since 1928, every May 1, there is an open race around Lake Viljandi.


The city itself attracts not only lovers of folk music and culture, but also lovers of leisure.

Those who want to relax or go in for recreational sports can use the tennis courts, playgrounds, cafes and diving boards located along the shores of the famous Viljandi Lake. Here you can rent a boat, or ride a catamaran. In Viljandi, you can come to enjoy its rich cultural treasures, or simply to wander through the winding streets and experience the special atmosphere of the city.


Fellin Castle was built at the beginning of the 16th century. The castle is functionally divided into northern, southern and eastern parts. The castle has a meeting room (capitulum), a two-naved tower, an archive room, a commander’s bedroom and living quarters, a refectory, a kitchen, a gallery, stables, servant dwellings, and storage rooms.

Võhma City

Vyhma - a city in central Estonia in the county of Viljandima. It is an independent city municipality and is not included in any volost. Railway station on the Türi-Viljandi line. Meat processing plant.

Võru City (Võru)

Vyru - a city in Estonia, was founded in 1784, during the reign of Catherine the Great. Võru, with its clear layout of streets and squares, in many respects looks more modern than other Estonian cities. The old wooden buildings of the original settlement are surrounded by less attractive modern suburbs. Most Estonians know Võru as the hometown of F. R. Kreutzwald, the creator of the national epic Kalevipoeg. It is located 62 km from Tartu.

Võru is also famous for its amazingly diverse nature. His northern district is a canopy, from the farmhouse window one can see the apple orchard of the next farm in the distance. In the neighborhood you can see old manor parks, flat fields and pastures. Beautiful lakes Tamula and Vagula.

Jõgeva City

Jõgeva is a city in eastern Estonia, the administrative center of Jõgevamaa County. The population is more than 6 thousand people.

general information

The first mention of the town of Jõgeva was found in the Polish chronicles for 1599. The settlement is called Yagiva. German name Lysholm. The development of the village began in 1876 after the Tallinn-Tartu railway passed through Jõgeva. In 1903, the landowner began to sell plots located next to the piece of iron for construction. This is how the main street appeared. Nevertheless, in 1919 there were only 95 houses in the city and only 817 people lived. In 1938, Jõgeva received the status of a city and a county center. Sights. There are no architectural monuments of any interest in the city. But there is a unique ornamental garden of Rudolph Tamm, created over 40 years. The garden is decorated with sculptures by the famous Estonian sculptor Anton Starkopff. Neighborhood. A peace treaty between Russia and Sweden in 1661 was signed at Kärd. Endla's lake-marsh system is shrouded in legends. There are places where a person’s foot has not stepped. You can go canoeing in the swamps. In Laouz - the ruins of the XIV century order castle. From here Karl XII went to Narva. Palamuse is known to the Russian reader from the books of O. Luts. Here were the events described in the novels "Spring", "Summer", "Wedding Tootsa". The school where O.Luts himself studied was preserved. Next to Palamuse is the Luua estate: a park in the English style and a manor house in the Baroque style.

Jõhvi City

Johvi - A small town in the north-eastern part of Estonia, located 46 km west of Narva. The population is 10,051 people (2017). Today's Johvi is a small county cultural center with beautiful churches and unusual culture festivals, such as the Creative Cauldron of National Cultures, which takes place in September.


The first mention of Johvi in ​​written sources dates back to 1241.

Historically, this town was the intersection of transport routes between St. Petersburg and Europe, thanks to which it developed. Currently, trains passing between Russia and Tallinn pass through it.


The main attraction of Jõhvi is the Mihkli Church (Jõhvi Mihkli kirik), which was built in the middle of the 14th century. In those days, she was in the territory of Jõhvi castle, forming a single defensive complex with him. Several times suffered greatly during the wars, but recovered. Today it is one of the oldest buildings in the city.

14 km from Johvi there is the largest Valaste waterfall in Estonia (Valaste juga) with a height of 30.5 m. There is a viewing platform at the bottom.

In the vicinity of the city, you can admire the beautiful nature, visit the Slate Museum or relax on the coast of the Gulf of Finland in the town of Toila.

It is also convenient from Jõhvi to start sightseeing in Ida-Viru County and Lake Peipsi area.

Watch the video: What Is Life Really Like In Estonia? (December 2019).


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