Tallinn travel guide
The capital of Estonia is a beautiful holiday destination, and the cultural hub of the country. It’s one of the best preserved medieval cities in Europe, with stunning Gothic architecture at every turn.
Practical information / Facts
- Tallinn is the capital of Estonia. Estonia is the northernmost of the Baltic countries, and it is also the coldest. The city has a population of nearly 415,000 residents, which makes it third largest capital in the Baltics.
- Arriving in Tallinn: Tallinn airport is served by several airlines, including national airline Nordica which operates from different locations in Europe.
- Transportation: Public transport is affordable and reliable. From the airport to the city centre, you can get by bus or tram. Single bus ride ticket costs 2 EUR if bought at a driver (cheaper, if bought a day/week ticket at a kiosk). The journey takes about 20 min, depending on traffic. See the timetable.
Taxi also is a good and relatively cheap in Tallinn. Use Taxify app and get up to 10 EUR off your first ride or Uber app to get a 5 EUR off your first ride.
- Currency: EUR
- Price level: Medium to expensive. Comparing to other Baltic countries, Estonia has the most expensive prices.
Typical prices: cup of coffee in a coffee shop 2 – 4 EUR, a pint of beer 4-6 EUR, medium sized pizza 7-12 EUR, main dish in a restaurant from 14 EUR, entry ticket to any museum 5-10 EUR. Hotels are most expensive within the Baltic region, but the apartments rent is relatively cheap, with prices starting from 20 EUR for an overnight stay in an apartment in the centre of Tallinn (if booked with Airbnb).
- Languages: Estonian (official), Russian, Finnish and English are widely spoken. German is also understood among older people.
Estonian Open Air Museum
For history fans, the Estonian Open Air Museum is a great day out. The museum is a reconstruction of an 18th century village, complete with a church, school and functioning farms. Though it’s a little way out of the centre, it’s well worth it for the experience. There are often events on there too, such as re-enactments and old-fashioned dances, perfect for some nerdy holiday fun. Museum homepage.
Where a fortress once stood, Toompea Castle was built on the ruins in the 1700s. It’s now home to the Estonian parliament. For seven centuries, it was where the person in power would reside, and it’s still known that whichever flag flies in the courtyard indicates the leader of Estonia. It’s a great trip for anyone interested in politics or history.
As well as the castle, the hill is also home to the Alexander Nevsky Russian Orthodox Cathedral. Entry inside is free, but photography isn’t allowed, so you’ll be sucked into the beauty of the moment. It’s one of the best places to go to get a view of the Old Town and port. It only takes an hour to make the walk to the top, so it’s a perfect trip for an afternoon of exploration.
Tallinn town square is the middle of the city’s Old Town, and home to its town hall. It’s best known for hosting festivals – such as Old Town Days – and concerts, and it also has an array of bars, shops and restaurants. There’s also a market which is perfect for picking up some souvenirs.
Tallinn city museum
This museum explores the city’s history from the 13th century to present day. For the best interactive experience possible, the museum offers sounds as well as images and objects to get a feel of how the city has grown. Museum homepage.
St Olaf’s church
The church is the largest medieval structure left in Tallinn. Though it’s been close to being destroyed plenty of times (including the times it was set on fire by lightning) it’s still in great condition. For the best views of the city, climb the church’s tower and look out at the fantastic view.
The 18th century palace features fantastic architecture and beautiful gardens, but the main attraction is the art gallery held within. It primarily holds Russian and European art, making it the only gallery in Estonia to feature foreign work. It’s also the largest art collection, with over 9,000 pieces housed here.
Kiek in de Kök & Bastion Tunnels
The old city fortifications now attract hundreds of visitors each year for its interesting exploration of Tallinn’s history. The tower and tunnels now hold a museum, complete with sound effects, pictures and films contributing to the experience.
This is my top list of best things to do and see in Tallinn. Would you like to add some nice place to this travel guide? Leave a comment and I will add your attraction to the list!
Quick tips to books cheap trip to Tallinn:
- Compare all airline fares to Tallinn with flight fare comparison site Skyscanner.
- To book a hotel at best price, visit Booking.com. Booking.com has the widest choice of hotels in Tallinn, most of the booking can be amended free of charge.
- If you wish to rent an apartment in Tallinn, check Airbnb. By clicking the link you will get 25$ off your booking (reservation total must be over 75$).
- For free taxi ride in Tallinn, download app Taxify, go to Promotions section and enter the promo coupon code GRIGORIJSKDY . This code will give you up to 10 EUR off the first ride, which makes your trip from the Tallinn airport to the city centre almost for free (normal price is 7-10 EUR depending on traffic). If you are several people travelling together, don’t forget that each of you can use the code. Or use Uber with up to 5 EUR welcome bonus for your first ride.