TOP 10 places to visit by LikeALocal

Source: Julia Kivelä / Visit Estonia

TOP 10 places to visit by LikeALocal

Martin Liivand wrote in LikeALocal about the TOP 10 places to visit while in Estonia. Have a look and start planning your trip to Estonia!

So, you arrived in Tallinn some days ago and you think you've done it all. You visited Telliskivi Creative City and spent all of your hard-earned money either on local amber or copious amounts of bear meat in Olde Hansa. Well, you're in luck, because even though Estonia is small, it doesn't actually end at the border of Tallinn. What follows is a list of 10 locations that are well worth your time and interest.

1. Toome Hill in Tartu

The southern Estonian city of Tartu is sometimes hailed as Estonia's education capital because the country's oldest university still operates here. It's not only home to beautiful minds, though, but some gorgeous locations as well. The prime example would be the city's historical centre, Toome Hill. Take a stroll through the vibrant green parks, explore the old observatory, marvel at the ruins of a medieval cathedral and spy a first-year student emptying the contents of his stomach onto a nearby tree after an intensive night of "studying".

This is a place where modern and medieval shrug off the weight of centuries and shake hands as friends. And as you're basking in the cool shadows of the statues of the greatest academics to emerge from the esteemed university, know that's it's not a babbling brook you're hearing, but a hung-over law undergrad taking a leak in a bush somewhere nearby.

2. Käsmu captains' village

Käsmu is a gorgeously picturesque captains' village on the northern coast of Estonia that was first mentioned in a court record in 1453 when a local man killed another guy in a bar fight. Times were indeed tougher before the craft beer revolution. Käsmu's captains sailed all of the world's oceans and took their anger management issues out to the open seas.

Nowadays the villagers have calmed down a bit and instead of committing recreational murder, they host the annual Viru Folk Music Festival. Käsmu is also home to Aarne Valk, a local guy who has his own maritime museum and cooks salmon so good you'll develop a crippling addiction. There are no longer any bars in Käsmu, though. At least we've learned something from history.

Käsmu maritime museum and captains' village

Photo by: Visit Estonia

3. Kakerdaja bog

Your visit to Estonia won't be complete without a trip to a wetland. The magnificently mystical Kakerdaja bog, situated in the Kõrvemaa Nature Reserve about 50 kilometres south-east of Tallinn, offers captivating vistas, peace and tranquillity.

As you're taking the boardwalk through the beautiful landscape, you'll come upon a lake in the middle of the bog. There you can enjoy a refreshing swim in the dark waters where, back in the day, Estonians sacrificed people to their ancient gods. Don't feel alarmed when something brushes against your leg. It's most likely nothing.

Hike with snowshoes in Estonian bog

Photo by: 360kraadi / Visit Estonia

4. The Onion Road

Sure, the Onion Road might sound like a slightly offensive Eastern European equivalent of the Yellow Brick Road from The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, but not so fast! It's actually a 30-kilometre-or-so stretch of road spanning the southern coast of Lake Peipus, inhabited by Russian Old Believers who are famed for growing beautiful golden onions.

Sample delicious salted fish, wash it down with local moonshine and if you're not blind or dead by the morning, listen as Aleksey from the neighbouring village passionately explains why things were so much better during the Soviet times.

A useful tip: don't suggest the locals return to the glory days by establishing a country called the Soviet Onion. That will be one high five you'll never forget.

Sibulatee region

Photo by: Magnus Heinmets / Visit Estonia

Last updated : 22.04.2021

In category: Tallinn, South Estonia, West Estonia, Islands, North Estonia, Nature & Wildlife