Tallinn travel guide
Estonia is a hidden gem in Europe that offers a unique blend of natural beauty, rich history, and modern culture. If you plan a trip to this country, you’ll first want to know the best time to visit. Luckily, there’s no wrong time to visit Estonia!
BEST TIME TO VISIT ESTONIA AND TALLINN
Estonia experiences four distinct seasons, each with its charm. In the spring, you’ll see flowers and trees blooming, and the days will get longer. In the summer, you can experience the phenomenon of white nights, where the sun barely sets, and enjoy a vibrant festival scene. In the autumn, the forests turn beautiful shades of orange and red, making it the perfect time for nature walks. Finally, you can enjoy a magical winter wonderland with snow-covered landscapes and cozy fireplaces in the winter.
If you want to experience a true winter wonderland, December is the perfect time to visit Estonia. With the Christmas and New Year holidays in full swing, you can enjoy festive markets, delicious food, and plenty of holiday cheer. Tallinn, the capital city of Estonia, is particularly stunning during this time of year, with the medieval old town decorated with twinkling lights and festive decorations.
On the other hand, if you’re a fan of long summer days, you should visit Estonia in June or July when the white nights occur. The white nights are unique in Estonia due to their location near the Arctic Circle. During this time, the sun barely sets, and the sky remains light even at midnight. You’ll have plenty of time to explore Estonia’s beautiful countryside, attend outdoor festivals, and soak up the sunshine.
No matter what time of year you visit Estonia, you’ll be enchanted by its natural beauty, friendly locals, and rich culture. So pack your bags, plan your itinerary, and get ready to discover all that Estonia has to offer!
GETTING FROM/TO THE AIRPORT OR PORT TO TALLINN CITY CENTER
If you’re planning a trip to Tallinn, one of the first things you’ll need to know is how to get from the airport or port to the city center. Fortunately, Tallinn is well-connected, and getting around is easy and stress-free.
Arriving at Tallinn Airport, you have a few options for getting to the city center. One of the most convenient ways is by bus. Bus stops are just meters away from the airport’s arrival entrances, making it easy to catch a ride. Tallinn City Transport Buss No. 2 and Buss No. 65 both stop at the airport, and you can use your Tallinn Ühiskaart Transport Card or purchase a single ticket from the driver for just 2 Euros.
Alternatively, you can take the tram, with Tram Line No. 4 stopping at the airport’s passenger terminal. The ticket costs 2 Euros if you purchase it from the driver or 1.50 Euros if you buy it from the ticket machine located in the tram waiting hall. The tram journey takes around 20 minutes, and it’s an excellent way to see the city’s sights on your way to your destination.
If you’re arriving by sea, the Port of Tallinn is the main passenger port in Tallinn, and it’s conveniently located near the city center. If you’re taking a cruise, the terminals are within walking distance of the Old Town, but you can also catch Bus No. 2 from terminals A and D. The ticket costs 1.50 Euros, and you can buy it on board or from the ticket machines at the A and D terminals.
The Tallinn Ühiskaart Transport Card is an excellent investment for transportation in Tallinn. It’s a smart card that you can use on all public transportation in Tallinn, and it offers discounts and special offers at many tourist attractions and restaurants. You can purchase the card at the R-kiosk in the open area of the airport or at the ticket machine in the tram waiting hall.
In conclusion, getting from the airport or port to Tallinn city center is straightforward and hassle-free, with plenty of options to suit your needs and budget. So, don’t hesitate to visit this charming city and enjoy all its wonders!
PUBLIC TRANSPORT IN TALLINN
Public transport is an efficient and cost-effective way to get around Tallinn. The city’s public transportation network includes buses, trams, and trolleys, which frequently run from early morning until late at night. The comprehensive network connects various parts of the city, making exploring popular attractions and hidden gems easy.
When using public transport, it’s important to remember that you must validate each ticket before boarding the vehicle. This can be done by tapping your ticket on one of the orange validators inside the bus, tram, or trolley. It’s also worth noting that you can purchase tickets from the driver, but they only accept cash. So buying a ticket in advance from a newsstand or a ticket machine is better.
If you plan to spend several days in Tallinn, consider purchasing a Tallinn Card. The Tallinn Card is available for 24, 48, or 72 hours and can be purchased online or at various locations throughout the city.
For those who prefer to use taxis, Tallinn offers several reliable taxi companies, including Talink Takso, Taxify, andUber. However, it’s important to note that taxis in Tallinn can be expensive, so it’s always a good idea to check the fare estimate before getting in. Additionally, be cautious of unofficial taxis, which may charge significantly more than the official ones.
Tallinn’s public transportation system is efficient and affordable, making it a great way to explore the city. With various ticket options and reliable transport companies, navigating the city has always been challenging.
The Tallinn Card is a fantastic option for visitors to Tallinn who want to make the most of their time and money. With so many museums, galleries, and attractions to explore in this historic city, the Tallinn Card provides great value and convenience.
One of the Tallinn Card’s most significant benefits is its free access to over 40 museums and attractions. This includes some of the most popular tourist sites in the city, such as the Tallinn TV Tower, the Seaplane Harbor Museum, and the Kumu Art Museum. With free entry to so many places, you can save money on admission fees.
Another great benefit of the Tallinn Card is that it allows you to travel for free on public transport. This includes buses, trams, and trolleys, so you can easily get around the city without worrying about buying tickets or navigating unfamiliar streets.
In addition to free access to museums and public transport, the Tallinn Card also discounts various other activities, tours, shops, and restaurants. For example, you can get discounted tickets to the Tallinn Zoo, discounts on souvenir shops and restaurants, and even free entry to some of the city’s most popular nightclubs.
If you’re interested in exploring the city on your schedule, the Tallinn Card PLUS is a great option. With this card, you get all the benefits of the regular Tallinn Card, plus free entry to the Hop On Hop Off buses. These buses run on a loop around the city, stopping at all the major tourist attractions, so you can easily see everything on your list without worrying about transportation.
Visiting a foreign country can be exciting, but it can also be daunting when adapting to different currencies. However, in Estonia, you can rest assured that you won’t have to worry about currency exchange rates as the Euro is the official currency. You can easily use your credit card or withdraw cash from ATMs without worrying about exchange fees.
POWER PLUGS AND STANDARD VOLTAGE
Regarding electricity, Estonia uses Type F power plugs, which are used in Germany, Austria, and many other European countries. This means that if you’re traveling from a country using a different type of plug, you must bring an adapter. You can easily find adapters in most electronic stores or online.
It’s important to note that the standard voltage in Estonia is 230V, which is higher than the voltage in North America and some other countries. So, check the voltage requirements of your electronic devices before plugging them in to avoid damaging them.
FOOD AND DRINK IN TALLINN
Estonians follow simple rules regarding nutrition: the food they consume must be fresh, tasty, and made from homemade products. This is the main reason why Estonian cuisine has preserved its authentic taste despite the influence of different cuisines (Russian, German, summer, and Lithuanian).
Estonia is also known for its weight towards organic food production. Fish, vegetables, meat, milk, and dairy products are often used to prepare meals.
As for traditional dishes, they are usually on the table during the holidays. In the daily diet, there are primarily pickles, potato salad (Kartulisalat), herring and beet salad (Rosolje), pastries stuffed with meat and vegetables (Pirukad), sausages, and blood sausage (Verivorstid), Mulgipuder, soups, various types of fresh, smoked, and marinated fish, meat (especially pork), meat in jelly (Sult– something similar to pihtija), and rye bread, a mandatory side dish to every main dish.
If we talk about sweets, Estonian muesli (Kama), sweet roll (Semla), fruit pudding (Kissel), and sour milk and cheese (Kohuke) sweets are popular. One of my favorite sweets is sweet bread (Kringel), which contains marzipan walnuts, almonds, or cocoa. Be sure to try Kalev chocolates, produced by the country’s oldest candy factory. A trendy drink in Estonia is yeast (Kali), a non-alcoholic drink similar to beer. The most popular alcoholic beverages are beer and vodka. The most famous breweries in Estonia are Saku and A. Le Coq.
However, Tallinn’s food scene is more comprehensive than traditional Estonian dishes. The city is a melting pot of cultures, and its food and drink options reflect that. Tallinn has a range of restaurants, cafes, and bars that cater to every taste and budget.
RESTAURANTS AND BARS IN TALLINN
Tallinn has several options if you’re looking for a fine dining experience. One is the NOA Chef’s Hall, which offers a unique dining experience overlooking the sea. The restaurant has a tasting menu that changes seasons and uses local ingredients. Another great option is the Tchaikovsky restaurant, which serves Russian cuisine elegantly.
For a more casual dining experience, the Telliskivi Creative City is a must-visit. This former industrial complex has been transformed into a trendy neighborhood filled with street art, bars, cafes, and restaurants. The F-Hoone restaurant, located in a former factory building, is popular among locals and tourists. The menu is diverse and features everything from burgers to salads.
Tallinn also has a vibrant cafe scene. The RØST bakery and coffee shop serves some of the best coffee in town, and their pastries are a must-try. The Kehrwieder Chocolaterie is another great spot for coffee and sweet treats. They make their chocolates on-site; you can watch the chocolate-making process while sipping your latte.
When it comes to bars, Tallinn has plenty to offer. The Speakeasy bar in the Old Town has a 1920s prohibition-era vibe and serves classic cocktails. Head to the Pudel Baar in the Kalamaja neighborhood for a more laid-back atmosphere. This cozy bar has a great selection of local and international beers and a relaxed atmosphere.
In conclusion, Tallinn’s food and drink scene has something for everyone. The city’s food scene is diverse and exciting, from traditional Estonian dishes to international cuisine, fine dining to casual eateries, and trendy cafes to cozy bars. So, the next time you visit Tallinn, try some local specialties and explore the city’s food and drink scene.
IS TAP WATER IN TALLINN SAFE TO DRINK?
Is tap water in Tallinn safe to drink? The answer is yes. Tallinn’s tap water is of high quality and meets the standards set by the European Union. The water is sourced from local wells and reservoirs, treated, and distributed through the city’s water system.
Tallinn is one of the few cities in the world where you can drink tap water straight from the tap without any concerns. The water is tested regularly to ensure its safety and quality, and the results are published online for everyone to see.
Drinking tap water in Tallinn is not only safe but also environmentally friendly. By choosing to drink tap water instead of bottled water, you’re reducing plastic waste and helping to protect the environment.
You can always use a water filter if you still need to decide about drinking tap water in Tallinn. Most hotels and hostels provide filtered water for their guests, and you can also purchase a portable water filter for your travels.
ACCOMMODATION IN TALLINN
Tallinn is a popular destination for tourists, and as a result, the city has a wide range of accommodation options to suit every budget and preference. From luxurious five-star hotels to cozy hostels, Tallinn has something for everyone. Also, The Sleep In A Local Home program allows travelers to stay in the homes of local Estonians and experience the city from a different perspective.
SAFETY IN ESTONIA AND TALLINN
If you plan a trip to Estonia and Tallinn, you’ll be happy to know that safety is not a significant concern. Estonia is one of the safest countries in the world, with low crime rates and a high standard of living.
In Tallinn, the capital city of Estonia, you can feel safe walking around even late at night. The streets are well-lit, and the public transportation system is reliable and secure. However, like any other city, it’s always wise to remain vigilant and monitor your belongings.
To ensure a safe and enjoyable trip, taking some precautions, such as keeping your valuables in a safe place and being mindful of your surroundings, is recommended. It’s also advisable to be cautious in crowded places, such as markets and tourist attractions, where pickpocketing can occur.
Another important aspect of safety is traffic. Estonians are known for their love of driving, and the roads can be busy, especially during peak hours. Be careful when crossing the street, and always use designated pedestrian crossings.
While safety in Estonia and Tallinn is generally not a significant concern, it’s important to remember that emergencies can happen anywhere. It’s a good idea to have travel insurance that covers medical emergencies and any unforeseen events that might disrupt your travel plans.
Overall, Tallinn is a city full of charm, history, and culture, and it’s no wonder why it’s becoming an increasingly popular destination for travelers. With its picturesque Old Town, stunning architecture, delicious cuisine, and friendly locals, Tallinn offers visitors a unique and unforgettable experience.
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