New hiking trail runs through Estonia

18. July 2012

The State Forest Management Centre (SFMC) opened a 370-kilometre hiking trail that runs across the entire territory of Estonia and took ten years to build. Aigar Kallas, Chairman of the Board of the SFMC, said that some existing trail sections were connected and some new sections were built for the hiking trail.

A total of 33 camping areas - tent sites, huts and lean-tos - lie along the way.

“The hiking trail starts from Lahemaa National Park in Northern Estonia, runs through six counties, two national parks, nine conservation areas and three state forest recreational areas, and ends by the Ikla Border Station on the Estonian and Latvian border,” said Kallas and added that as Estonia is a relatively flat country, the trail should be suitable for people of all levels of fitness.

Every kilometre of the hiking trail is marked and there are signs that help hikers find their way, so getting lost on the trail is not easy. Information boards give overviews of forest management and heritage, culture and recreation. Maps of the trail can be obtained from the Nature Centres of the SFMC and information centres. There are more than 26 of them all over Estonia.

Chairman of the Board of the SFMC Aigar Kallas, mountaineer Alar Sikk, hiking expert Tõnu Jürgenson, runner Heleen Vennikas, doctor Julia Ivanova, and photographer and filmmaker Kristjan Kaljund will pass the hiking trail in ten days on foot, by bike, ATV, on horseback and by boat.

Estonia is one of the most forest-rich countries in the world – approximately half of our land area or 2.2 million hectares are covered with forest. RMK’s plant and seed management area grows tree sets and ensures Estonia has a sufficient reserve of forest seed.