Estonia Cheap Hotel Bed and Breakfast Guest House Accommodation
You have arrived at the northernmost of the three Baltic States, a nation proud of its renaissance as a beautiful and much-loved member of the European Union since gaining its independence from the Soviet Union in 1991. Now liberated and fuelled with a progressive spirit, Estonia has recently been discovered by travellers eager to experience its amazing medieval walled capital, Tallinn, its vast forests, its unspoilt wetlands and its remote offshore islands.
Only its northern neighbour, Finland, has more of its territories covered by lakes. This is a sparsely populated country ideal for those seeking remote and tranquil retreats for rest and relaxation. In terms of wildlife, within its dense forests live wolves, bears, lynx, elks and deer. Its national parks include Karula, Lahemaa, Matsalu, Soomaa and Vilsandi. These wonderful parks, along with the 1,500 Baltic Islands, provide ideal getaways and can be visited independently or as part of an eco-tourism adventure tour. Here, you can enjoy hiking through woodlands, horse riding trails and canoe excursions into the flooded forests of an ancient, pristine wilderness. The largest of the Baltic Islands are Saaremaa, including the town of Kuressaare with its impressive medieval castle and Hiiumaa where the town of Kärdla is located and where you will find the best birdwatching opportunities. Here, the landscape is one dotted with w
indmills, churches and the tiny villages of ‘Old Estonia’ seemingly forgotten by time, where there is still a rich folklore revolving around local traditions, festivals and music. There are pristine beaches at Angla, Karja and Triigi and if you hit the right season, bathing in these northern seas is exciting and exhilarating. Estonia’s premier coastal resort is Pärnu, a small town dating back to the 13 th century, where relaxation on the beach or in a health resort can be interspersed with nights on the dance floor.
The capital city Tallinn
The cities of Tallinn and Tartu provide all of the evidence of the nation’s rich cultural heritage within their great sights and attractions, a blend of the medieval and modern, with grandiose architecture alongside charming cobbled boutique-lined shopping streets. Tallinn is an ancient Hanseatic city built by Germans in the Middle Ages, dominated by the tall steeple of the Oleviste Church and the Toompea Castle. Its cityscape, with its characteristic orange-tiled rooftops, has been compared with that of Prague, and its city walls and civic buildings are just as outstanding in their condition. Alternatively, for those interested in its more recent history, it is possible to visit traces of the Soviet past such as a deserted Soviet army base once off-limits to Estonians. The streets of the city exude charm, and enjoy a vibrant café culture, diverse restaurants with interiors from antiquated but atmospheric to contemporary and slick. Tallinn is a cultural centre where you can be entertained by anything from classical chamber groups and puppet theatre to nightclubs and cinema. Tartu is Estonia’s most important university town, lying south of the capital, and is seen as preserving an even more authentic spirit than the capital, with its old wooden houses, museums and galleries. From here, the beauty of southern Estonia is close at hand, from Lake Peipsi and Alavatskivi Castle to the rural charms of Värska and the classic Setu villages around it.
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