Estonia holidays

Essential Information

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Why Estonia

Estonia is a buffer country between Scandinavia, Central Europe and countries to the east. You can get to Estonia from anywhere in Europe by land, by air or by water. This small country can be reached in a few hours by ferry from Finland and Sweden, and by bus from such European capitals as Warsaw and Berlin.

Its capital Tallinn, included in the UNESCO World Heritage List, received the rights of the city in the 13th century from the King of Denmark. Since then, Tallinn has been ruled by the rulers of various countries: Denmark, Sweden, Germany, the Tsars, and later Soviet Russia. Old Tallinn abounds in medieval houses and streets and is still protected by the remains of the city wall. The rich architecture of the city gives birth to many legends and stories, which are interesting to know.

Almost 50% of Estonia is occupied by forests, and Estonians worship their woods, swamps and creatures living there. No wonder Estonians are said to feel a spiritual kinship with their surrounding nature.

Estonia holidays are an obvious choice for those who want to get rid of the bustle of big cities and relax in nature, enjoying its peace and tranquility.

When to go

Estonia lies in a temperate zone and is washed by the Baltic Sea in the north and in the west. The climate is transitional from marine to continental.

Due to the influence of the Gulf Stream, winters are warmer here than in the continental regions of Europe, while summers are relatively cool. The average temperature in July is +18-20 degrees Celsius, in January -4- 7 degrees Celsius. Because of the sea, the weather is rather unstable and can change several times a day, especially in spring and autumn.

Due to the shallow depth, the water in the sea and lakes warms up quickly, its temperature is already +20-24 degrees Celsius in July. The beach season lasts from early June to late August, and the best time go on holidays in Estonia is from early May to mid-September.

Where to go/stay

The charm of Estonia is that the main tourist destinations of the country do not have marked seasons, therefore it is possible to plan holidays to Estonia any time of the year.

If you decide to visit Tallinn it is better to plan your itinerary in advance. Seeing all the tourist sites might take a while - only wandering the streets of the Old City can take all day long. Although the unique atmosphere reigning in the historical center is considered as its main feature, tourists are attracted here not only by the ancient fortress walls. The location on the Baltic coast makes for long walks along the promenades. Despite the cool and short summer, beach holidays are also quite popular in Tallinn.

The main resorts of Estonia are located on the seaside - these are Pärnu, Haapsalu, Kuressaare, Toila and Narva-Jõesuu, there are also tourist health centers on the lakes of Värska and Pühajärve.

A small cozy resort Narva-Jõesuu is located to the north of Narva, on the shore of the Gulf of Finland. Pine forests and fresh sea air create a special healing microclimate here, and the spring of mineral water allows you to combine rest and treatment on Estonia holidays. A broad beach with fine white sand stretches for 13 km, 7 of which are within the city borders.

The popular summer resort of Pärnu is located on the coast, 130 km south to the capital. In addition to a variety of high-level health facilities and excellent beaches, the churches of St. Catherine and St. Elizabeth with a beautiful organ, the Town Hall, the Tallinn Gate, and the Red Tower are of interest here.

Laulasmaa is a charming resort, located only 40 km from Tallinn. A large closed beach is only 50 m from the complex of buildings; another beach is about 1.5 km away. The territory of the closed beach is a complex entertainment center: children's playgrounds, water park, bungalow-bar, attractions and beach volleyball courts are available here. And those who prefer extreme kinds of sports can try surfboarding.

Things to do

There are plenty of destinations in different regions of the country for those who come on holidays to Estonia and want to get acquainted with the history of the country.

The North of Estonia is known for the Observation Tower and the Memorial Cross in Sinimäe, the Landscape Park "Oru", the Fire museum in Toila, the Church of Pühajõe. The highest waterfall in the country - Valaste (25 m), the fortress of Purtse, the funeral park "Victims of Evil" in Hiiumagi, the Cross of Kirkkula are also to be found here. The picturesque valley and the historical sites of Padaorge, Tooles Castle, the Sea School and Museum in Käsmu, the Palmse Manor, and the Historical town of Rakvere with the Wisenberg Fortress are the last but not the least to be named here.

Haapsalu, which is located on the West coast of Estonia, is famous for its curative mud. Saaremaa is the largest island in Estonia, where wooden windmills, medieval stone churches and ancient farmsteads covered with straw were preserved. Kuressaare, the center of the island, is known for its Episcopal castle - the only fully preserved medieval castle in the Baltic States.

In Southern Estonia you can find the oldest city in the Baltics - Tartu, the popular resort center Otepää, Võru with the Valley of the Nightingales, Valga with the Oval church of St. John and the Mausoleum of Barclay de Tolly, as well as Viljandi with the ruins of the castle of the Crusaders.

In some parts of the country, the nature has preserved in its original form. Such places as the picturesque precipitous bank of the Akhya River near Põlva, the valley of Kotiorg, the Haanja Upland, the Sacred lake of Pühajärv to the south of Otepää, the Aegviidu near Tallinn and Otepää in the south of the country, were recognized as the centers of ecological and active tourism long time ago.

In the vicinity of Tallinn, Tartu, Pärnu, Elva, Vändra, Narva, on the islands of Saaremaa and Hiiumaa there are excellent places for those, who come on Estonia holidays for biking, while the best areas for canoeing are the sandy cliffs of the Akhya River, Endla Nature Reserve, and the bogs in the Sooma nature reserve.

Accommodation

After Estonia gained independence, the number of hotels throughout the country has grown to hundreds. In 2004, Tallinn was awarded the first place among the Baltic cities by the number of hotel rooms, although it is still far from Stockholm and Helsinki.

There is an official classification of hotels in Estonia. Interesting fact, that local hoteliers take the official certification from Estonian Hotel and Restaurant Association on a voluntary basis.

In Tallinn, there are many accommodation options from high-class hotels of international level, to decent venues rated 1-2 stars with a full range of services and low prices. In other cities of the country you might not find 5-star properties, but 3-4 star hotels offer quite a comfortable accommodation.

There is always a choice among bed & breakfast, small private hotels, hostels, and campsites for those who come on holidays in Estonia on budget. Moreover, in rural areas of the country, many locals own the so-called "turismitalud" or tourist farms offering an inexpensive accommodation option.

Check Booked.net’s website for the best prices and available rooms in Estonia hotels for your next trip.