Lahemaa National Park

Known as the 'Captains’ Village', from 1884 to 1931 tiny Käsmu was home to a marine school that churned out ship captains. At one stage it was said that every Käsmu family had at least one captain in their midst, and by the 1920s a third of all boats in Estonia were registered to this village. It lies in a stone field boasting the highest concentration of erratic boulders in Estonia.

Käsmu's erratics can be viewed on the walking trails that start at the very end of the road. The Käsmu Nature & Culture Trail is a 4.2km, 90-minute circuit, taking in the coast and pine forest. A longer trail starts by the chapel and stretches 15km to Lake Käsmu (Käsmu järv).

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Lahemaa National Park attractions

1. Käsmu Sea Museum

0.13 MILES

The former Soviet border-guard barracks at Käsmu now shelters this eclectic museum, displaying artefacts relating to sailing, fishing, smuggling and other…

2. Tammispea Boulder

4.68 MILES

Split into several pieces over millennia, this gigantic 7.8m-high erratic boulder, hidden within a lovely stand of forest, is still an impressive sight…

3. Palmse Manor

6.36 MILES

Fully restored Palmse Manor is the showpiece historic building of Lahemaa National Park, housing the visitor centre in its former stables. The pretty…

4. Viinistu Art Museum

6.54 MILES

It's extraordinary that an obscure, remote village near the top of the Pärispea peninsula should be home to one of the country's best galleries, yet…

5. Altja

6.85 MILES

First mentioned in 1465, this fishing village has many restored or reconstructed traditional buildings, including fishing sheds on the rocky point and an…

6. Oandu Nature Centre

6.87 MILES

Housed in a 19th-century forestry office, with displays on Lahemaa's flora and fauna, outdoor exhibits including a plant trail, hay barn and ice-cellar…

7. Sagadi Manor & Forest Museum

7.33 MILES

Completed in 1753, this pretty pink-and-white baroque mansion is surrounded by glorious gardens (which are free to visit), encompassing a lake, numerous…

8. Kolga Manor

13.31 MILES

The photogenically tumbledown, neoclassical manor house at Kolga dates from 1642, but was largely rebuilt between 1768 and 1820 by the wealthy Stenbock…