Category: Estonia

Hidden Places Of Europe

The best winter city breaks

The best winter city breaks 7th October 2015
Whether you crave snow-dusted cathedrals and steaming roast chestnuts, or Christmas beach barbecues and steamy jazz festivals – head to these cities in November, December and January
1. Tallinn, Estonia In Tallinn, opposites exist quietly side-by-side: glass towers stand next to ancient architecture, and dark Gothic towers punctuate streets of of brightly-coloured buildings. Here, you'll find all the essentials for a fairytale trip, with a crisp winter trimming of snow and frost.
In winter, you'll be hard-pressed to find a place with as much charm as the city's old town. Whether you want to spend your time wandering the cobbled back streets exploring the city's history or taking part in some winter fun, it won't disappoint.

Christmas in Talinn (Shutterstock)
There's plenty going on this time of year. To get in the festive spirit, arm yourself against the cold with a cup of spiced wine and try the Christmas..

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Hidden Places Of Europe

10 magical Christmas markets

10 magical Christmas markets 7th November 2015
Vin-chaud? Gingerbread men? Roasted chestnuts? Whatever you want from a Christmas market, here's our guide to planning your festive jaunt
1. Cologne, Germany Throughout the festive season, Cologne offers no fewer than four sparkling Christmas markets to its visitors. The most spectacular of these, Am Dom, hosts 160 tempting stalls in front of the towering twin-spires of the city's cathedral. Stalls with handmade decorations, sweet gluhwein and candy surround a giant Christmas tree in the centre of the square.

Cologne Christmas market (Shutterstock)
After you’ve filled up on sticky treats and several alcoholic beverages to ‘warm yourself up’, head to the heart of the Old Town to the Alter Markt. Be prepared for your inner child to make an appearance here, as traditional merry-go-rounds and puppet theatres dot the market, while Father Christmas sits in his grotto amid wooden toys and scrumptious boiled sweets.

2. Budapest, ..

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Hidden Places Of Europe

10 Best Places to Visit in Estonia

10 Best Places to Visit in Estonia Last updated on March 30, 2017 in Europe Leave a Comment
Located in Northern Europe, Estonia is a largely underrated gem. In addition to being affordable for travelers, Estonia boasts medieval cities, scenic coastlines and a fascinating history. Bordered by Russia, Latvia, the Gulf of Finland and the Baltic Sea, Estonia is also more accessible than many travelers expect. Among the best places to visit in Estonia are castles, national parks and cultural hotspots. Tallinn is amazing, but it’s not the only Estonian destination worth exploring!
10. Viljandi In Southern Estonia is the small city of Viljandi. The city has a rich history that is nearly 2,600 years old, and plenty of historic architecture still remains. The 16th century ruins of the Viljandi Order Castle, for example, are a major attraction. The biggest reason to visit Viljandi, however, is the annual folk music festival. Every July, the city attracts as many as 20,000 visitors who come specifically for the folk music. Dozens of concerts are held in every venue imaginable, and the event is the largest music festival in the entire country.
9. Soomaa National Park wikipedia/Peeter Teedla Soomaa National Park is a fascinating destination. Primarily a peat bog formed as a result of glacier melt from more than 10,000 years ago, Soomaa National Park is cut by several beautiful rivers. The best way to explore Soomaa is with a canoe. You rent canoes or join a self-guided tour, and as you paddle you’ll be able to spot deer, elk, boars, beavers, golden eagles and more. Canoeing is especially popular in the spring, or what locals call the fifth season. During this time of year, water levels rise substantially, and boats are sometimes the only way to get around.
8. Rakvere Castle Northern Estonia is home to Rakvere, a city where humans have lived for nearly 1,500 years. The city’s biggest attractions is Rakvere Castle, which was constructed in the 16th century. The castle has become a kind of medieval theme park, and costumed visitors and staff wander the grounds. You can watch knights polishing their armor, see an alchemist’s workshop and tour the ancient wine cellar. In the castle’s Shenkenberg Tavern, you can even dine on classic medieval dishes. Visiting the castle is an unforgettable way to bring history to life.
7. Hiiumaa When most people picture Estonia, they don’t picture islands. However, Hiiumaa is just one of several islands off the coast and in the Baltic Sea. To reach Hiiumaa, you can take a plane from Tallinn or a ferry from multiple coastal cities on the mainland. Equally loved by surfers, sailors, and hikers, Hiiumaa is great place to visit for those looking for peace and quiet. The island also boast many interesting lighthouses. The 19th century cast iron Tahkuna Lighthouse is the tallest in the country. The Kõpu Lighthouse, however, is far older. Dating back to the 15th century, Kõpu is one of the oldest lighthouses on the planet.
6. Narva Castle The city of Narva is the easternmost destination in the country, not to mention the entire European Union. The city was heavily bombed during World War II, but thankfully the beautiful and historic Narva Castle still stands. The castle, which is also known as Hermann Castle, was built in the 13th century but the Danes as a residence for the Danish King’s vice-Regent. Inside the castle is the Narva Museum as well as a collection of handicrafts workshops where you can watch and even learn the skills used in medieval times. The castle tower overlooks the Ivangorod castle on the Russian side of the river.
5. Parnu wikipedia/Kristian Pikner Where the Parnu River meets the Gulf of Riga, you’ll find the coastal resort city of Parnu. Parnu is known as the summer capital, because it is where so many Estonians choose to take their summer vacations. The biggest reason to come to Parnu is the beach, which boasts fine, white sand and gorgeous dunes. The beach promenade runs along the shore and helps to create the traditional coastal resort feel in the city. Even after the sun sets for the day, lighting along the promenade ensures that people are still walking and enjoying the coastal scenery. If a rainy afternoon appears, join the locals at Vee Park, a popular indoor water park in Parnu.
4. Saaremaa The largest Estonian island is called Saaremaa, and it is located in the Baltic Sea. The island has an 8,000-year-old history, and was ruled by Danes, Swedes, Germans and Russians in that time. Today, most visitors spend their time in the island’s capital city of Kuressaare. In Kuressaare, you can explore the completely intact medieval castle. You can tour the castle and the grounds, which now serve as home to the Regional Museum of Saaremaa. If you’re interested in hiking, sightseeing, birdwatching or photography, then Saaremaa’s Sõrve Peninsula is a spectacularly scenic destination to explore.
3. Lahemaa National Park One of the most popular national parks in Estonia is Lahemaa. Since it is just an hour’s drive from the capital, it is the ideal day trip. Viru Raba, or Viru Bog, is a must-see part of the park. Trees poke from the swampy ground, and there is a definite ethereal quality. To make it easy to explore Viru Bog, there is a 5-km (3-mile) boardwalk that is usually dry, keeping you out of the water but close enough to admire the scenery. In the middle of the park is Sagadi Village, a fascinating spot where you can tour Sagadi Manor and learn more about the culture and history of the region.
2. Tartu The city of Tartu is considered the intellectual hub of the country, thanks to the impressive and well-known University of Tartu. Between the university and the fact that Tartu is the oldest city in the nation, this city is clearly an interesting destination. Its handsome centre is lined with classically designed 18th-century buildings, many of which have been put to innovative uses. One of the coolest attractions in Tartu is the soup neighborhood. In the soup neighborhood, every street is named after soup ingredients like potatoes, beans and peas. Old wooden houses line these streets, which are just next to the Emajõgi River.
1. Tallinn (Where to Stay)flickr/visittallinn.ee The most popular place to visit in Estonia is Tallinn, the capital and the hub of medieval architecture. The heart of the city is called Toompea, a hill that retains a historic atmosphere thanks to cobblestone streets and 15th century buildings. The area is amazingly preserved and accessible on foot. From the top of Toompea, you can look out over much of the Old City. Some highlights of the Old City include the bustling shops on Viru Street, the 14th century Town Hall and the opulent 19th century Alexander Nevsky Cathedral.
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Hidden Places Of Europe

7 Things to Avoid if You Don’t Want to Break Your Vacation Budget

Going on vacation without making a budget can be a big financial mistake for you. You might find yourself spending excessively and ruining your home budget for months to come. If you plan your vacation wisely, you will spend a fraction of the usual fee on tickets, accommodation and food. Below are some things you should avoid doing if you want to have extra money to enjoy your vacation:
1. Do not fly on the weekend
Tickets cost more over the weekend because this is when most people travel. Buy your travel tickets from Mondays to Wednesdays, which are off-peak travel days as tickets cost lesser on those days.
2. Do not stay in a hotel
Stay in a vacation rental to save money. You might feel inclined to stay in a hotel for safety reasons, but your safety can be assured if you rent from a reputable property management company as opposed to renting directly from the home owner.
If you are vacationing in LA, look up a company that represents Tadoba tiger resort rentals and get a good de..

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Hidden Places Of Europe

Make Your Romantic Overseas Getaway Memorable

Taking your sweetheart across international borders is a bold step and is romantic in and of itself. However, you want to make sure that the trip doesn’t turn into a bust. Being unprepared can turn your dream vacation into a nightmare fairly quickly. Whether you’re planning this trip for a honeymoon, engagement or just a couple’s getaway, you’ll find these tips helpful in ensuring that your vacation is memorable — in a good way.

Plan Out Your Itinerary Thoroughly
Once you get to your destination, what do you plan to do with your honey? Simply booking the tickets and then hoping for the best leaves you with too many unanswered questions. To avoid a bumpy road ahead, you can smooth things out by knowing exactly what you will do, where you will go, what you’ll eat and where you’ll sleep. Every little detail doesn’t need to be planned in advance, but just the important ones. Leaving a little room for spontaneity is always good.(Image by Peter Lee)

Look for Things to Do that Interests Y..

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Hidden Places Of Europe

Price of European city breaks is falling

Tweet Price of European city breaks is falling6th April 2012
Weekend breaks to European cities are cheaper than this time last year, with the pound on the rise and the falling of other currencies
According to the Post Office's annual City Costs Barometer, which compares the price of
accommodation, public transport, cultural activities and restaurant meals in 23 popular cities, the cost of taking a city break is decreasing.
The good news comes for UK travellers visiting traditional favourites like Paris, Rome, as well as any euro-funded cities. These two capitals might have finished 15th and 18th in the Post Office's survey but prices have taken a tumble since last year. This is largely due to the pound's recent strength against the euro – £1 now goes 5% further than in the same month last year.
However, Eastern European cities continue to be the most budget-friendly. For the second year running, Latvia's capital city Riga was the cheapest weekend away. The Post ..

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Hidden Places Of Europe

7 things for free in Tallinn

7 things for free in Tallinn 16th April 2013
Estonia’s capital is a mish-mash of medieval and modern – Daisy Cropper reveals how to soak it all up on a budget
1. Tour the Old Town There is so much more to Estonia’s capital and culture than the Old Town but it’s a good place to start your exploration. The main square – Raekoja plats – is the heart of this medieval centre and the natural place to begin. Pick up a free city map from the tourist information centre (Kullassepa tanav) and guide yourself around the main points of interest. For a longer walk, circumnavigate the city walls, ticking off each of the 26 watchtowers as you go.
Want to have the best, unexpected experiences? Get lost in the maze of narrow lanes, centuries-old courtyards and crumbling archways around the Old Town. This way, you’ll meet plenty of locals, get away from the hordes and see the real side of Tallinn.
2. Get a free pint (of cinnamon beer) Tallinn is packed with medieval memorabilia – but be warned, som..

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Hidden Places Of Europe

Short break: Tallinn, Estonia

Short break: Tallinn, Estonia Estonia’s capital is like a medieval fantasy, surrounded by sandy isles and bear-infested forest. Visit in spring, advises Daisy Cropper, to make the most of the city and its surrounds
Where? North coast, Estonia
Why? For a mix of medieval and modern culture; untamed countryside
When? Spring/autumn, to avoid cold weather and summer crowds Tallinn is more than a little bit fairytale. Turreted towers and slender spires pierce the Old Town’s skyline, scattered amid a cluster of red-tiled roofs. Cafés squeeze down cobbled alleys and overflow into hidden courtyards while traditional artisans rub shoulders with chic boutiques. The whole comely lot is wrapped within sturdy ancient walls, not to mention listed by UNESCO. Simply, it is one of the best-preserved medieval cities on the continent.
Most people come to visit it around Christmas, when its festive markets are in full swing. But it’s so much more than a winter destination. From April-June, the Estonian ..

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