Tallinn is a small capital of Estonia mostly famous by its well-kept medieval town as well as its socialist history.
The identity of Tallinn is combined with identities of two other countries which are in near proximity: Finland and Russia. As soon as you get off a ferry (which is operating from Helsinki to Tallinn) you will notice Finnish people checking out the local alcohol stores and pubs. Some of them don’t even leave the ferry and just enjoy their time in Tallinn by…staying inside.
What I have learned is that many Finnish people are traveling to Tallinn simply to enjoy cheaper prices of groceries. But mostly alcohol 😀 The city itself is quite petite and you can enjoy it in a day; spending another day in Tallinn can mostly be concentrated in walking around, little shopping, eating and drinking in pubs (that’s about it, really).
The other influential neighbour is Russia. The soviet history of this country still lingers here and I was surprised to hear Russian everywhere, to read the signs in Russian and to see this „Eastern European“ touch everywhere. You can see women in fur coats and shiny high-heels at noon. Then on one side you see modern buildings and abstract architecure and on the other side of the road you see grey soviet architecure buildings and people looking down, never making eye-contact or smiling.
Everything aside, it is a beautiful city. The old medieval town is amazing and view from the top is really breathtaking. The autumn colours are making a beautiful scenery for photos so I would definetly recommend coming in either summer or autumn to enjoy the city with all the stunning colours of nature and the sky.
Though it is only the end of October, Tallinn was quite cold. For me it was even colder than Helsinki. For the first time ever I was wearing my heavy winter attire: coat, scarf and gloves.
The cold wasn’t only the weather. It is hard to explain the energy of the town, so I will compare it to the sentiments I had in Venice. While Venice is your ideal romantic companion, the scenery of your amorous moments and simply pictoresque, loving image;
Tallinn is the aftermath of it all.
I leaves a quite dark impression, there is very little light and almost no people on the streets, no sounds, no emotions. I couldn’t really fit in. Something was missing, something felt off. People are convincing me to come in the summer because appearently then everyone is out on the streets and enjoying themselves. Maybe I will try it and let you know if my impression changes.
Until then, be sure to read me next week to find out about my time in Sweden!