Estonian capital Tallinn is full of cultural and architectural hotspots. But when you have more than a day to spend here, taking a step out of the capital’s borders will reward you with plenty of easy to reach culinary and cultural adventures.
Hara Harbour and submarine base used to be closed to the public during the Soviet times since they were situated in a highly protected military zone. Now, all curious explorers can drive up to the former submarine demagnetisation base and literally step into history by walking on the quay to admire the ruins of the buildings from up close.
For those adventurers who want to immerse themselves in history even deeper, guided tours are provided. (You need to book them in advance.)
The Baltic Coastal Hiking Route runs along the coast of the Baltic Sea and is part of the European E9 hiking trail. The trail starts at the Lithuanian–Latvian border and ends in Tallinn. It covers more than 500 natural and cultural attractions, and you can walk it both ways. When hiking the trail, you will also walk past accommodation and dining places where you can enjoy a soft bed and delicious food.
It takes about 60 days to complete the entire route but your heart and legs will be equally happy after a good day of walking. You can choose between wilder coastal areas, rustic seaside villages or end up in places with a public transport connection.
Why roam freely if you can walk into a prison? The former Murru Prison is open for visitors interested in unique tales and histories. To get to the prison, you first need to cross a lake. You can do this in a canoe, on a SUP board or on a raft.
You will reach the shore at the foothill of Tuhamägi Hill where the guide will meet you. (Yes, you are very welcome to climb the hill as well!) To learn more about the trips and excursions to the prison building, get in touch with Paekalda Water Sports and Adventure Centre.
Estonia is a land of more than 2000 islands, with many of them a perfect day-trip away from the capital. In summer, there are regular passenger ferries between Naissaar and Aegna where travellers can take their time to enjoy secluded beaches and quiet pine forests. Both of these islands have a military history dating back to the Tsarist and Soviet eras, with architectural finds to prove it.
Then there is also Prangli which has maintained its fishing-village culture since the 13th century. It is the only island in North of Estonia that has been continuously inhabited for more than 600 years. With friendly locals, a strong traditional culture and a very diverse nature, visiting Prangli is an adventure by itself.
Where you sleep at night is as important as the sights you see during the day. Here are some of the most interesting places to stay around Estonia.
Internationally acclaimed composer Arvo Pärt chose the pine forests of Laulasmaa as the home for the Arvo Pärt Centre. Come and see why.
Take a culinary road trip around Estonia. From rustic to gourmet, these seven restaurants will tickle your tastebuds and give you a chance to relax.