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Tallinn Card - (Is it worth it?) and any other tips/suggestions for a visit to Estonia for 4-5 days?

Hi Everyone. My husband and I are heading to Latvia to see family for a little over 2 weeks. We are going to visit Tallinn (and surrounding areas) for 4-5 days prior to Latvia. When researching what to do, I have noticed there is a "Tallinn Card."

Does anyone have any feedback on it and if it is worthwhile to purchase one or not? I welcome any suggestions, tips, must-do's, don't-waste-your-time's, etc.

Thank you!
Adrienne

Posted by
5019 posts

Adrienne,
I was in Tallinn this morning - we were there for three days. We loved Tallinn (and the other places in Estonia, and Latvia, we went to). Not sure if the Tallinn card is worth it, but we didn't bother with it, reasons being 1) most things are fairly inexpensive there, relative to much of Europe, and 2) for us, the main attraction was the city itself - it's architecture, old walls, towers, etc. we didn't find any of the touristy things very compelling. Must-see items? I'd say this: the city gets crowded with tourists from cruise ships. They start showing up at 8 am and are there until 5-8 pm. Outside of those hours the place is at its best. If you want to see the center without big crowds, get up early and be out there exploring the city from 6-8 am. Be sure to get to the upper town, which has some beautiful views and is less crowded.

I would be remiss if I didn't suggest that Latvia is an under-appreciated gem, too. Tallinn gets more attention and tourists too, but we loved all three of the Baltic countries. Riga is delightful (be sure to give it a few days, too), as are other parts of Latvia (don't miss Rundale Palace). Plenty to see and do all around this region.

We are still traveling (currently in Poland) so I won't be online much until we get home next week. You will like Tallinn, it's cool.

Posted by
8 posts

Hi David,

Great to hear! Thank you so much for the info and such a quick response. I'm excited to see another Baltic state other than Latvia. Please don't get me wrong, Latvia is WONDERFUL, and that's where my husband's family is from, so that makes it extra special. We've been to Latvia twice, but we haven't done a whole lot outside of visiting family in Riga, Jurmala and Dagda. This trip will be a little more sightseeing and a longer time to spend there.

I've just addd Tallinn to our itinerary (as of last night), so I've got a bit of homework to do since we'll be leaving in just a few weeks. Lots of planning and reservations to be made!

Enjoy Poland and wherever else your travels take you. Thank you again for the response.

~ Adrienne ~

Posted by
504 posts

I'd say that the two must-dos are the Museum of the Occupations and the bastion tunnels tour. That, and just walking around the city. As others have said, you want to get to the scenic overlooks early, before the cruise groups get there.

I have a thread called Three Days in Tallinn in the trip reports section. You might give it a read for more details.

Posted by
8 posts

Hi Dav,

Thank you for the reply. I will check it out. Sounds like we'll need to be up and at it early to beat the cruise groups. That's fine by me, though, as I am more of a morning person anyway. I'm happy it's been mentioned, though, as we probably wouldn't have thought to get up so early on our first day there.

Posted by
2092 posts

I was in Tallinn for a week and didn't notice cruise ship crowds every day--in mid-Sept the old town was often pleasantly un-crowded. But one day I was heading up some stairs to Toompea Hill and a mad rush of cruisers came barreling down the stairs like a tidal wave. I avoided the lower town for the rest of the afternoon.

I did not get a Tallinn card, just paid entry as I went. Aside from old town sites Kadriorg and the KUMU are very interesting, and since I have Estonian heritage I also visited the outdoor living history museum at Rocca al Mare.

If you have spare time in Tallinn I highly recommend using EstAdventures if you want to spend a half or full day outside the town (or walking tours in town)--I did two, Lahemaa National Park and a beautiful country manor house, also toured the bogs and other places, then out to the western edge to see an old Soviet base and time in Haapsalu. They are small groups--no more than 6, but one was just me and a couple, another was just me--late in the season, and I got the company's owner as a guide both times. Excellent and attentive, he even took me to a crafts co-op in Haapsalu since I am a knitter and Estonia is known for their knitted lace and waited patiently while I dithered.

https://www.estadventures.ee/

Posted by
8 posts

Hi Christa,

Thank you so much for the information and response. We will most likely be in Tallinn for 4 nights/5 days, so I'm thinking a day tour would be great. I have also seen others suggest EstAdventures as well. I will definitely look them up for the tour.

My husband's family is Latvian, so I completely understand how you have a pronounced affinity for your homeland. Although my husband and his father were born in Indiana, (his grandparents came here as refugees during the war), he still feels a special attachment to the land when we visit - sort of the way I feel when we're in Ireland, as that is my heritage (from many, many years back). We're beyond thankful and blessed to be able to travel and go back to our roots. <3

~ Adrienne ~