Estonia is a tiny little gem of a country located in Eastern Europe. This brilliant Baltic country is blessed with natural beauty, rich history and delectable cuisine. It’s extensive coastline offers fantastic views of the Baltic sea and though the swimming season is terribly short, one can simply not afford to miss these beautiful views. After seven hundred years of being ruled by the German, the Danish, the Swedish, the Polish and the Russian people, Estonia has seen a beautiful ménage of cultures. It regained its independence quite late in 1991 and since then has been a part of the European Union. Estonia also has astonishing wildlife diversity. Closures of large land areas during the World War Two helped increase Estonia’s forest cover from twenty five percent to above fifty percent by 1991. Estonia now has a large number of wolves, bears, lynx, elks, and deer.
This wonderful country is also known for its many mesmerizing islands, extensive beaches, rustic landscape, its fantastic music and dance festivals, its numerous spas for a soothing vacation and of course its sumptuous local cuisine. Often the verivorst, black pudding, served with mulgikapsad, (which is basically sauerkraut stew) is considered as the national dish and one must most definitely enjoy this dish while in Estonia.
The City of Tallin
The capital of Estonia, Tallin is a unique and beautiful city with a magnificent ancient centre. With its cobbled stone streets, medieval houses and beautiful alleyways the city of Tallin in Estonia is a beautiful tourist destination. Some exciting places to visit in this beautiful big city are the Medieval old Town centre, the Viru Gate area for some classy shopping, and the Raekoja Plats located in the heart of the old city has impeccable restaurants and cafes. Apart from these some of the most captivating cathedrals such as the Alexander Nevsky Cathedral and theSt Mary’s Cathedral which is the oldest Cathedral in Tallin should be visited by tourists interested in charming ancient and medieval architectures. The Open Air Museum located outside the Old City is a remarkable, one of a kind museum that aims at depicting the hardships of the ancient times. Complete with seventy two buildings of Estonian architecture and located in the deep, dense forests, the Museum provides the most unique experience to any traveller. If you are lucky, you must also attend to lively music festivals of Tallin such as the Tallinn Winter Festival in winter, the Tallin Music Week in spring season, and the Tallinn International Festival Jazzkaar in April. With performances from the top Estonian soloists and more, the atmosphere and vibe of these music festivals will blow your mind.
The City of Rakvere
Approximately hundred kilometres from Tallin, this reverent city is best known for its unique atmosphere and numerous brilliant castles. The city is quite famous for its youthful hip-hop and electronic music scene as well as its friendly, crazy and totally unique people. It’s many music and dance festivals are what attract most of the tourists. Some sights to see at Rakvere are the Sculpture “Tarvas” which is a large animal statue located near the old castle ruins, and the modern town square of Rakvere. With its beautiful streets and shops, this is one of the main tourist attractions. Lutheran Church of the Holy Trinity is famous for its impossibly high and thin spire built in the 17th century and is frequented quite often by tourists. Some other things to do at Rakvere apart from shopping and enjoying the music scene is attending the Rakvere Order Castle tours with its many events such as archery and also being able to enjoy medieval meals.
The town of Haapsalu
Located on the west coast, this magnificent seaside resort town is a wonderful place to just sit back, relax and enjoy some quality time with your loved ones. With its narrow roads, this town is perfect for tourists seeking to relax, enjoy picnics, go sailing, taking mudbaths and visiting the local spas. The Swedish market at Haapsalu has a beautiful waterfall for couples to relax while shopping. The beaches at this seaside resort town such as the Africa beach and promenade are wonderful places for families and children to spend a lazy day. For history buffs, the town also has numerous museums such as the Läänemaa Museum, the Estonian Railway Museum, the Museum of the Coastal Swedes, and the Cyrillus Kreek Apartment Museum are excellent and well maintained museums where tourists can learn more about the town and its history. The churches and cathedrals at Haapsalu are also beautifully maintained and depict the impeccable architecture of those times.
The city of Tartu
Dating back to 1030, the city of Tartu is the oldest and second largest city of Estonia. It is famous for its renowned universities and its Hanseatic origin. Being a student town, English is widely understood by most people and the language barrier is felt least in this city. Visiting the university building of Tartu and the old city of Tartu are widely visited by tourists. An unusual place to visit is the Soup Neighbourhood where every street is named after a soup ingredient and also the Town hall square where the statue of kissing students is present. It is considered as the town symbol by some. The city also has some enchanting gardens and parks with beauties beyond imagination. Some great parks to visit are the Raadi Park, the Barclay Park and the Botanic Garden of the University of Tartu. They represent some of the most enticing natural sceneries in the region.