So you are on the road and you are looking for an old and living city? The eastern part of Europa is not what most people make it out to be. There is much more to eastern Europe than poverty and crime. Places like Estonia are old, rich in history and very living places. This is a guide to the capital of Estonia; Tallinn.
How to get to Tallinn
Depending on where you are, you can enter Tallinn in 3 ways. Either by bus, plane or by boat
By far the cheapest way to travel is by bus of course. Not only does the bus arrived in at the train station, which is located close to the city, bus rides are also cheaper than a boat or plane ride. When you travel by bus there is no need to worry about how you get into the city, the bus will arrive inside the city.
Another way to travel to Tallinn is by boat, this will get you directly to the harbor. Tallinn has a beautiful harbor so if you chose this option don’t miss out on the views! When choosing to travel by boat you have to keep in mind that you either have to walk 20 mins or take a city bus (city buses are free within the city !). The harbor is tightly connected to the train station with buses and trams going every 5 to 10 minutes. My advice is to take a bus to the central station and go on from there.
Bus numbers: 21 – 41 – 1 – 2 – 3 – 5
The fastest way to travel anywhere, a plane. This option will take you all over the world in a matter of hours, the same is for Tallinn. When the plane lands in Estonia, you will find yourself about 30 minutes away from the city. There are a lot of busses and tram that go from the airport to the central station and the other big squares. Keep in mind that the bus or tram will cost 1.50 euros
Bus numbers: 2 – 4 – 104A – 106A – 121 – 138 – ELR1 (trolley) – ELR40 (trolley)
Where to stay in Tallinn
Tallinn has a lot to offer from anybody, you can have a quiet trip to see an old and beautiful town or you can party like you never did before. It all depends on the place you chose to stay in. You can put any accommodation in Tallinn in a category; The party, The quiet and the luxury place to sleep. Below are 3 of my favorite places to get a good night sleep.
The Monks Bunk
The party hostel. With a bar as a reception, tours and pub crawl leaving every day this is the perfect place to meet a lot a new people and have big and tasting parties. A night in this hostel will cost you 11 to 14 euros.
Tallinn backpacker is a hostel that is best if you want to have a quiet night sleep without spending lots of money. Quite often people that stay in Tallinn backpacker will join a pub crawl (either from the Monk’s bunk or another one) and go back for a good and easy night sleep. A night at Tallinn backpacker will cost you between 11 and 14 euros.
If you are willing to spend a little bit more for a night sleep you get a lot in return. Hotels in Tallinn are known for there luxury, with bars and restaurants you have no need to go anywhere for the night. Enjoy the city in silence, enjoy your rest in comfort. A famous hotel in Tallinn is called the Nordic hotel.
What to do in Tallinn
1 Explore with the walking tour
An easy way to explore the entire city is to join the walking tour, it starts every day at 12:00 local time at the tourist information center. The tour takes about 2 hours to complete and is completely free (if you want to you can tip the tour guide after!). After you got a good grip on the city you can explore on your own.
2 Lahemaa tour
The Lahemaa tour is a tour that takes you to the Lahemaa national park, located 30 minutes outside of the city. The tour starts whenever there are enough people signed up. This tour goes to the park at 11:00 and will bring you back to the city around 18:00. You will see places you could never see by yourself, waterfalls, wild animals and beautiful views are all included in the tour.
Prices range from 30 to 40 euros.
3 Pub crawls
After you had a good meal and explored the city during the day there is a full night ahead of you. When you feel like you have energy left you can join in one of the many pubs crawls. Most of them range from Wednesday until Saturday and will take you to 2 pubs and 1 club. The club is Hollywood club, the oldest and biggest club in Tallinn. The best way to make new friends and experience nights you will never forget.
Pub crawl prices range from 12 to 15 euros.
Where and what to eat in Tallinn
Estonia is a place rich in traditions. A part of these traditions is the way they prepare food. Traditionally speaking, all the food in Estonia and Tallinn was made without the use of electronics.
Foods that people in Estonia traditionally eat are Cakes, Pies, soups, Ribs, and Potatoes. In the middle of the old town of Tallinn, there is a restaurant that is known for its traditional way of preparing food.
That restaurant is called Three Dragons and is located inside of a church! A full meal will cost anywhere from 4 to 6 euros inside. The choice is limited to the traditional foods, which means Pies, Ribs, and soup. Everything is made from scrap, without the use of electronic tools.
The woman working there will also treat you like they did 500-600 years ago, which means that they can be a bit harsh. Don’t let this get to your head, it is part of the show and will only add to the experience of the food.
Where to go after Tallinn
From Tallinn, there are a few places that are easy to reach, either by boat, train or bus.
These places are Helsinki, Turku, and Riga.
To Riga, there is an option to book a bus ride. Bus rides are overall cheaper, you can a bus ride for as little as 5 euros.