Tallinn, Estonia Top 10 Points Of Interest
1. Old Town
With the majority of the tourist attractions located within these old city walls, Tallinn’s UNESCO old town is undoubtably the gem of the city. I highly recommend staying within the old town as this is where you will want to spend the majority of your time. There are all types of accommodation here, but if you’re a budget traveller I suggest staying at Hostel Alur.
Built in the medieval times, this defensive town is crawling with history and culture. Be sure to spend at least a day exploring all that this area has to offer. Get lost in its tiny back streets, treck to the top of church spires and dine in some of the cutest bars and café’s in Europe.
2. Town Hall Square
The hub of the old town, town hall square is where the original foundations of the city were built. Here you will find bustling markets during the summer months, outside bars and restaurants serving traditional Estonian food and drink, as well as the centre piece of the square - the Town Hall. While you’re there be sure to check out of pharmacy, It’s one of the oldest in Europe and has be trading since the 15th century! If you’re in the old town during the evening, be sure to dine at one of the many restaurants in the square for the perfect evening.
3. St. Olaf’s Church
For the best panoramic views of the old town be sure to check out St. Olaf’s Church in the lower part of town. Open from 10am-6pm every day, this church is a must when in Tallinn. Admission to the church is two euros per person and isn’t that impressive, however, for five euros you can climb to the top of the tower. Be warned, the journey to the top is VERY hard work and takes about ten solid minutes of walking up hundreds of steps but just remember the view at the top is definitely worth it.
4. Dome Church/St. Mary’s Church
Arguablely a better view than St. Olaf’s, Dome Church is another must when in Tallinn. Located at the other side of the old town, on top of Toompea Hill, you can tour the inside of the church for two euros. However, I recommend paying and extra three euros to be able to climb to the top of the tower. Again, getting to the top is very hard work and not for the faint hearted but the view of Alexander Nevsky cathedral at the top makes for the perfect Instagram picture.
Built slightly later than the original town hall square, Toompea was built on the higher land of the town for the nobility to live. During the medieval years, a guarded gate separated the two areas in order to keep the peasants out. Due to the nobility living up here, you will find the grandest buildings and best viewpoints of the city here.
6. Path of History
A small but important part of the city. Tallinn’s history is filled with numerous occupations, all which have left their impact on the city in their own way. Head to the path of history and spend the minutes walking down the street reading the tiles describing Tallinn’s past and looking forward to their future.
7. Town Hall
The centre piece of Tallinn’s old town, located in town hall square is the old government building. Dating back to the 11th century, this building is enriched in history. Unfortunately, it’s closed during winter but if you’re lucky enough to be in town during summer be sure to go inside and look round. Entry is four euros and gives you full access to look round the original rooms inside including the kitchen, sleeping quarters, courtroom and newly renovated attic.
8. KGB Prison Cells
Like the rest of the baltic states, Estonia is filling with a past that most older locals would rather forget. Years of occupation from both the Russians and Germans have left some stunning architecture in the city. In this museum, located in the former KGB prison cells in the city, you can learn about the former occupation of Estonia when it was part of the USSR. The museum is open 11am-6pm everyday however if you’ve already visited the museums in the other baltic states such as the museum of occupation in Riga then this museum is a lot of the same thing.
9. Kadriorg Park & Palace
If you get bored of the old town and want to venture further out of the city, take a long walk into Kadriog Park. About 40 minutes walk out of the city is this stunning palace. Built in 1725 by Peter the Great, the palace and surrounding gardens make for a lovely afternoon walking around and exploring the history.
10. Russalka Momument and Beach
Located a few minutes walk from Kadriod Palace is the Russalka monument and beach. If you’re luckily enough to be in Tallinn when the suns out, be sure to visit the beach here which is very popular with the locals. The Russalka monument was built in memory of the sinking of the Russian warship, Rusalka.