Although the smallest of the Baltic countries, Estonia (Eesti) makes its presence felt in the region with its lovely seaside towns, quaint country villages and verdant forests and marshlands, all of which set the scene for discovering many cultural and natural gems. Yet Estonia is also known for magnificent castles, pristine islands and a cosmopolitan capital amid medieval splendour. It's no wonder Estonia is no longer Europe's best-kept secret.
Tallinn, Estonia's crown jewel, boasts cobbled streets and rejuvenated 14th-century dwellings. Dozens of cafés and restaurants make for an atmospheric retreat after exploring historic churches and scenic ruins, galleries and boutiques. By night, stylish lounges and youthful nightclubs offer a glimpse of the city's sexier side. Some visitors have a hard time escaping Tallinn's undeniable allure, but outside the capital, the bucolic landscape hides numerous attractions. Lahemaa National Park in Northeastern Estonia has lush forests and beautiful coastal trails. South of Estonia's cosmopolitan spiritual centre, Tartu, is the hilltop town of Otepää with its laidback atmosphere and lovely ski trails. Handsome beach towns, spa resorts and medieval ruins lie scattered about the western shores of the country. Further west lies Estonia's biggest island, Saaremaa and on it the towns of Angla, Karja, Triigi & Tuhkana, where iconic windmills, 19th-century lighthouses, unspoilt beaches and yet more medieval ruins transport visitors to another time.
Covering vast swaths of Estonia, forests, wooded meadows and under-appreciated bog form the backdrop to numerous activities. Hiking over wooded trails, horse riding along coastline and canoeing over flooded forests can link you to the ancient wilderness. There's also great bird-watching, cross-country skiing in winter and swimming in crystal-clear lakes and rivers in summer. This all makes a nice prelude to a sauna, one of the national pastimes.
Ready to go?
These tours & activities make it easy:
Best places to stay in Estonia
Estonia, Latvia & Lithuania travel guide
Lands of crumbling castles, soaring dunes, pagan rituals, towering pine forests, quaking lakelands and churning northern seas – a trip to the Baltic proves that fairy tales do come true…
Baltics to St Petersburg
Decades after the fall of communism, the Baltic countries of Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia remain a mystery to most travellers. We’re not complaining, though; more mystery means fewer crowds and an easier time getting to know these fantastic countries.
Estonia destination guides
Estonia, Latvia & Lithuania - Estonia (Chapter)
Estonia is completely unique. Europe has fallen head-over-heels for the charms of Tallinn and its Old Town, and Estonia’s sparsely populated countryside and extensive swathes of forest provide spiritual sustenance for nature-lovers.
One of Europe's most enchanting cities, Tallinn is a heady blend of medieval and modern, with narrow, cobbled streets set beneath the spires of 14th-century churches, and a wild mix of restaurants, cafés, boutiques and nightclubs hidden in the carved stone walls. The World Heritage-listed Old Town has plenty of distractions for even the most ambitious itinerary.
Helsinki Day Trip from Tallinn
While in Tallinn, take some time to explore the dynamic, vibrant city of Helsinki on this day trip! Famous for its modern architecture, Helsinki boasts interesting attractions like magnificent pipe-constructed Sibelius Monument and Temppeliaukio Church, built on a rock with a copper-covered.
Europe on a Shoestring - Estonia (Chapter)
In recent decades, and with a new-found confidence, Estonia has crept from under the Soviet blanket and leapt into the arms of Europe. The love affair is mutual: Europe has fallen for Estonia’s captivating blend of eastern European and Nordic...
Forget the Med: five stunning stretches of coast in northern Europe
Travellers flock to the Mediterranean shores of Italy, France and Spain, but for deliciously different places to dip your toes, look a little further north on your map of Europe. You’ll need a sweater if you visit outside the summer, but the views, dunes and magical history are worth a slightly paler suntan...
Tallinn Shore Excursion: Tallinn Hop-on Hop-off Tour
No matter what cruise ship you arrive on, this is the perfect do-it-yourself shore excursion in Tallinn. See Tallinn’s essential sights on a hop-on hop-off sightseeing tour. You'll see historical and modern sights of Tallinn in a comfortable and secure environment, with full commentary provided.
Ten hidden gems of Europe
There’s no place like Paris, Barcelona or Rome - but Europe has untouched corners that match the big hitters on beauty and charm, and with far fewer tourists. Take the road less travelled with these ten hidden gems of Europe. 1...
Converse with the locals in their own language as you explore the fascinating Baltic countries. Sample some Latvian pîragi, ride a trolliga around Talinn and know what to do when someone shouts Iðgeriam! or Iki dugno! In Lithuania. Packed with...