Picture perfect views of Tallinn

Source: Andrea Forlani

Picture perfect views of Tallinn

Tallinn, the 2023 European Green Capital, is a multifaceted jewel of a city: depending from where you look, it can be anything from medieval to modern. To admire its many sides, take a peek from these spots offering the best views in town.

Striking church spires, red tiled roofs and sleek glass towers make up the unique skyline of Estonia's capital. In the summer, trees' green foliage pokes out between buildings, while in winter snow dusts their rooftops white. The streets are a maze spanning centuries. All Tallinn's architectural styles and influences through the ages come together to form a diverse collage. What is the best location from which to admire this beauty? There is no single answer. Tallinn is full of lookout points, each showing a different side of the city's personality.

Whether you're looking to photograph your trip or just sit back and take it all in, these locations each offer a one-of-a-kind perspective on Tallinn.

Historic scenes from Toompea Hill

Toompea Hill is your first stop for romantic views of the Old Town with several lookout points to choose from. After climbing the stairs near the Freedom Square, you'll soon find the first and perhaps the best know viewing location, Kohtuotsa platform. On the wall stands the now iconic "Times we had" phrase, meaning something different to each visitor. Pose here for a photo to remember the moment.

Continue exploring Toompea and you'll encounter Piiskopi and Patkuli viewing platforms, both offering views of the Baltic Sea. Come in the evening to watch the sunset and feel the fresh breeze. Not only will you be greeted by panoramic colors, but can sit and watch the ships cruise in and out of the harbor for as long as you like.


A calm and peaceful finish to a day full of sightseeing. You just might feel like a king from this vantage point.

Photo by: Kaarel Mikkin

A modern view from atop medieval marvels

During parts of the 16th and 17th centuries, St. Olav's cathedral was the tallest building in the world. It remains a Tallinn landmark, visible from sea and land for kilometers in all directions. While admiring St. Olav's spire, reaching for the sky, you might not guess that you could stand on it, but you can! Visitors today can walk along the structure's roof to enjoy 360 degrees of sightseeing from the heart of the Old Town: a bird's-eye view. From this position, one gains a real appreciation for the feats of Tallinn's medieval engineers.

The other iconic spire in Tallinn's Old Town belongs to Niguliste Church, also called St. Nicholas. Built back in the 13th century, the church is now a museum. Inside you'll find Tallinn's most famous artwork, a fragment of Bernt Notke's painting the Danse Macabre. The museum opened a glass elevator in spring of 2023 to take visitors up the church tower and observation deck for a 360° view of Tallinn's skyline.

Old Town Oleviste rooftop

Make your way to the top and be rewarded by stunning views. You'll be asking yourself how a building so tall was constructed in the Middle Ages.

Photo by: Mart Vares

Modern heights

If you'd like to get the big picture, ascend the tallest building in Estonia: the Teletorn (TV tower). From 175 meters above the ground in this television tower you can see Tallinn and its surroundings, including the Baltic coastline and nearby islands. It is rumored that you can even see to Helsinki on a clear day. You will see that there is much more to Tallinn than the Old Town, glimpsing all the city's neighborhoods.

From this height and distance, the church towers in the center look like a delicate painting on canvas, the Soviet-style apartment buildings of Lasnamäe look more like children's blocks and the residential houses of Pirita below look meant for dolls. An interactive exhibition inside the Teletorn accompanies the views by explaining the development of Tallinn from just a settlement to the urban center it is today.

Edge Walking sightseeing

Can you recognize any of Tallinn's landmarks from here? Try to spot the places you've visited in the center.

Photo by: Mart Vares

Whether it is relaxing, surprising or results in just the right shot, you won't regret taking a moment out of your visit to admire Tallinn from these breathtaking perspectives. After enough viewing from afar though, you'll want to jump right back into the action.

Last updated : 28.04.2023

In category: Tallinn, History & culture