How To Spend A Weekend in Tallinn
Where? I can hear you thinking it! Tallinn is the capital city of Estonia, sat on the literal edge of the Baltic Sea. If you’re looking for a city break that’s not your typical vacation, Tallinn really might tick boxes you didn’t even know you needed to be ticked.
Getting Around in Tallinn
Transport is great in Tallinn. Fast, efficient, and nothing that will break the bank. With trams, buses, and trolleybuses covering just about every street, wherever you want to go will be made that much easier by embracing the local public transport. But to be honest, Tallinn is a compact city, meaning a vast amount of what you might want to see in Tallinn over a weekend you will be able to do on foot.
Where to stay in Tallinn
If you can, stay in the Old Town. Repeat: stay in the old town. Since this is at the heart of everything you’ll get to experience in Tallinn, a hotel, hostel, or apartment right in the middle of the city makes the most sense. Search early, and try to find something as close to the city walls as you can. Also, do your research. Tallinn is growing in popularity with tourists wanting to take cheap transport between Baltic cities, so wherever you look you’re likely to find a backpacker or two. Some of those backpackers come to Tallinn purely for its clubbing scene, so if that’s not the kind of thing you want to lay awake listening to until the early hours of the morning, be sure you know what’s going on in the streets around your accommodation before you book!
What to do in Tallinn
Okay, on to the important stuff. If you want an overview of the city without having to plan anything, walking tours are a great option. There are free ones, paid ones, and even private tours that will take you on a historical adventure around the city walls, as well as beneath them through the Bastion Passages. But if you want to explore for yourself, I would recommend the Old Town, the Town Hall Square, and Kadriorg Park as some of the most picturesque places. The Kohtuotsa viewing platform will also give you the most spectacular views of the city and beyond.
Telliskivi Loomelinnak, or Creative City, is a great place to head to if everything handmade is your kind of thing. The shops offer everything from hand-crafted interior design to natural remedies. There are more than 400 cultural events held here each year, meaning whenever you choose to visit there is something unique for you to experience. And every Saturday there is a flea market; who knows what treasures you might discover!
If it’s not a break away for you without a museum visit, then you have the Kumu Art Museum, Health Care Museum, the Lennusadam Seaplane Harbour, and the Open Air Museum to choose from. Just remember that if this happens to be a long weekend break you’re taking, a lot of Tallinn’s museums are closed on Mondays.
Freedom Square, the Viru Gates, and St. Catherine’s Passage are all must-sees that you can take a leisurely walk through. And a trip to Tallinn wouldn’t be complete without stopping for a sweet treat in one of the city’s beautiful cafes. If the folk of Tallinn knows anything, it’s how to make a good cake!
In short, Tallinn is a great place to visit if you want a weekend that isn’t hurried trying to cram everything in. There is enough to keep you occupied and plenty new to discover, but you won’t feel pressured or that you are missing out.
While English is widely spoken in Estonia, learning a bit of the language is always a good idea. Estonian has a scary reputation as one of the hardest European languages to learn, but learning a bit is not nearly as daunting as it seems. Language Trainers can help you get a handle on Estonian and help make your trip that much more fun.
Did we miss any sights in Tallinn? Let us know down in the comments!