Seventeen European airlines have scheduled services to Tallinn year-round, with additional routes and airlines added in summer. The main Baltic services:
airBaltic (www.airbaltic.com) Multiple daily flights between Tallinn and Rīga.
Finnair (www.finnair.ee) Up to seven flights a day between Helsinki and Tallinn.
Tallinn Airport is conveniently located just 4km southeast of the city centre and offers air connections with 34 other Baltic and European destinations. A few domestic flights are scheduled to the islands of Saaremaa and Hiiumaa, routes currently handled by Saartelennuliinid (www.saartelennuliinid.ee) .
- From the airport, bus 2 will take you into central Tallinn and then on to the passenger ferry port. Running an average of three times an hour between 6.30am and 11.30pm (slightly shorter hours on weekends) it should get you from the airport to the A Laikmaa stop by Viru Keskus in about 20 minutes, traffic depending. Unless you've had a chance to buy a Tallinn Card or Ühiskaart (smartcard) you'll buy a single-journey ticket from the driver (€2, exact change required). Simply reverse the process to get back to the airport.
- A taxi between the airport and the city centre should cost less than €10. The airport suggests that you use the cabs waiting at the official rank to avoid being scammed (all firms have different rates). Returning to the airport, ask your accommodation provider to book a reputable firm to collect you.
Ferries fan across the Baltic from Tallinn to Helsinki, St Petersburg, Mariehamn and Stockholm.
Eckerö Line Twice-daily car ferry from Helsinki to Tallinn (2½ hours).
Linda Line Operates smaller, faster (and more expensive) hydrofoil connections between Tallinn and Helsinki, from late March to late December.
Tallink Runs multiple daily services between Tallinn and Helsinki, and an overnight ferry to Stockholm and Tallinn, via the Åland islands.
Viking Line At least four daily car ferries between Helsinki and Tallinn (2½ hours).
To & From the Ferry Terminals
There are three main places where passenger services dock, all less than a 1km walk from Old Town. Most ferries and cruise ships dock at Old City Harbour (Vanasadama). Eckerö Line, Viking Line and St Peter Line use Terminals A & B while Tallink uses Terminal D, just across the marina. Linda Line ferries dock a little further west, beside the crumbling Linnahall.
Bus 2 runs one to four times every hour between 6.30am and 11.30pm (slightly less frequently on weekends) from the stop by Terminal A, calling at Terminal D, the city centre, Central Bus Station and airport. If you’re heading to the port from the centre, catch the bus from the A Laikmaa stop, out front of the Tallink Hotel. Also from the heart of town, buses 3 and 73 go to the Linnahall stop (on Põhja pst, near the start of Sadama), five minutes’ walk from all of the terminals.
A taxi between the city centre and any of the terminals should cost about €5.
Regional and international buses depart from Tallinn's Central Bus Station, about 2km southeast of Old Town and linked by two tram lines and eight buses. Services depart from here for Latvia, Lithuania, Poland and other European destinations.
The national bus network is extensive, linking Tallinn to pretty much everywhere you might care to go. All services are summarised on the extremely handy Tpilet site (www.tpilet.ee). The following are some of the main routes:
- Tartu (€7 to €14, 2½ hours, at least every half-hour)
- Viljandi (€9.50 to €11, 2½ hours, 11 daily)
- Pärnu (€6.50 to €11, two hours, at least hourly)
- Kuressaare (€15 to €17, four hours, 11 daily)
- Haapsalu (€4.35 to €8.50, 1¾ hours, at least hourly)
Thanks to an easily navigable network of roads in Estonia, Tallinn is easily reached by car. Crossing into Estonia from Latvia on the Baltica highway is a breeze, as both countries are part of the Schengen Area, so there are no border checks. The main border checkpoint from Russia is at Narva. Car ferries from Helsinki and Stockholm run regular service to Tallinn.
Like accommodation, cars book up quickly in summer, so it pays to reserve ahead. The large international companies are all represented, with desks at Tallinn airport and usually a city office too. If you haven't booked ahead, enquire at the tourist office about smaller local companies – they're usually cheaper.
Reliable local and international firms include the following:
The Baltic Train Station is on the northwestern edge of Old Town; despite the name, it has no direct services to other Baltic states. GoRail (www.gorail.ee) runs a daily service stopping in Narva (€8.10, 2½ hours) en route to St Petersburg and Moscow.
Domestic routes are operated by Elron (www.elron.ee) and include the following destinations:
- Rakvere (€5.80, 80 minutes, four daily)
- Narva (€11.50, 2¾ hours, three daily)
- Tartu (€10.60, two to 2½ hours, eight daily)
- Viljandi (€9, 2½ hours, five daily)
- Pärnu (€7.90, 2¼ hours, three daily)