My husband and I are traveling to Estonia on a Rick Steves tour and also visiting Latvia and Lithuania. I see that the CDC recommends the Hepatitis A vaccine for all of the Baltic countries, but Rick's pre tour information doesn't mention it as necessary for visiting Estonia. Bottom line is that I'm looking for help in deciding whether to get the vaccine. Thanks for any information you can give me.
I spent a week in Estonia last fall and ate local food, drank tap water and was fine. Tallinn is an extremely clean city (restaurants and restrooms are spotless) and they are hygienically-minded people, and since hepatitis A is spread through contact with infected people I suppose it couldn't hurt to be vaccinated, but you'd probably be fine without it.
I'd suggest that you check with your Doctor or a specialist Travel Clinic. The CDC does tend to err on the side of caution.
However, the vaccine is effective for a fairly long period of time. If you expect to travel in the future to less developed countries, getting it now will just save you a vaccination down the road. You do have to get multiple doses (I think it is two). When I went to Botswana, I chose to get the Twinrix (Hep A + Hep B) and that was three doses over a 6 month period.
As an experiment, I plugged in several European countries (Italy, France, and Spain) and the CDC recommended hepatitis A, hepatits B, and to consider a rabies vaccine for all of them.....I also travelled to Latvia and Estonia (and Italy and France and Spain) without the vaccine and ate and drank freely with no problems, as did everyone on my trip. I think the recommendation comes from the possibility of encountering not so clean water in more rural areas. But this isn't very likely in the big cities.