This rural and metropolitan cycling tour begins in Estonia's capital of Tallinn, where you'll discover its medieval Old Town. Then you'll cycle through the bogs of Laheema National Park, ride along the shores of Lake Peipus, and bike around the trestle windmills of Saaremaa Island. Cap the adventure with visits to charming villages plus enjoy one last cycling excursion on the scenic Noarootsi Peninsula.

Highlights

  • Take a walking tour of Tallinn's medieval Old Town
  • Cycle through the protected wetlands of Lahemaa National Park
  • Explore Saaremaa Island and visit old trestle windmills
  • Ride along the shores of Lake Peipus, one of Europe's largest lakes
  • Bike the Noarootsi Peninsula, starting in the historic town of Haapsalu

Brief Itinerary

Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Tallinn - Walking Tour of Old Town Tallinn
Day 2 Cycle Lahemaa National Park Vihula
Day 3 Ride along Lake Peipus - Transfer to Tartu Tartu
Day 4 Cycle Saaremaa Island - Transfer to Kuressaare Kuressaare
Day 5 Bike Noarootsi Peninsula - Depart Tallinn  

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1: Arrive in Tallinn - Walking Tour of Old Town

Tallinn's Old Town
Tallinn's Old Town

Welcome to Estonia!

Your trip starts in the historic capital of Tallinn. After arriving at the airport, transfer to your hotel and settle in before heading out to explore the city. You'll meet your host for a guided walking tour of Old Town.

A UNESCO World Heritage Site, Tallinn's city center is a well-preserved medieval town dating to the 11th century. On a stroll of its cobbled streets, you can admire old houses that have for centuries been protected by stone defensive walls complete with guard towers. You'll also pass many historic churches, merchant buildings, and fortresses. Highlights include the famous Alexander Nevsky Cathedral and Toompea Castle.

Grab a snack at one of the many cafés, bistros, and restaurants in the heart of the Old Town. Then walk down to Seaplane Harbour, home to the country's premier maritime museum, which offers tours aboard historic ships. In the late afternoon, you'll make your way to Kadriorg Park and visit the 18th-century palace built by Peter the Great. Your next stop is the Kumu art museum, which is the largest and most impressive exhibition venue in Estonia.

The evening is yours to roam Tallinn at your leisure. Perhaps enjoy a traditional meal at one of the restaurants near Town Hall Square.

Day 2: Cycle Lahemaa National Park

Lahemaa National Park in Autumn
Lahemaa National Park in Autumn

After breakfast, you'll transfer by car to Estonia's scenic coastline northeast of Tallinn. Upon arrival, your guide will present you with your bike and ensure you have all the gear needed for the day's ride.

The first leg of the ride will be through Lahemaa National Park, which lies along the country's northern coast and is considered one of the last unspoiled regions of the Baltic coast. You'll cycle through a unique bog landscape filled with lakes, streams, and boardwalks. You'll also visit old forests and historic manors. Along the way, there will be opportunities to view an abundance of wildlife, particularly several species of birds. 

In the late afternoon, you'll end your trip in the small town of Vihula, where you can visit the 16th-century Vihula Manor. Take some time to settle into your accommodation and rest your legs before heading out for dinner.

Cycling Route: About 40 miles (60 km)

Day 3: Ride along Lake Peipus - Transfer to Tartu

Kissing Students Statue in Tartu
The Kissing Students statue in Tartu

Enjoy breakfast at your hotel, and afterward, you'll transfer to the town of Mustvee, the starting point for today's ride. This pleasant route follows along the shores of Lake Peipus, which is the fifth-largest lake in Europe. It's also the largest trans-boundary lake on the continent, as it shares borders with both Estonia and Russia.

You'll cycle along a designated path from Mustvee to the small village of Varnja, which is home to under 200 people. The ride passes by marshy wetlands, rural fields, small towns and forests, and long stretches of lakeshore beaches. From Varnja you'll transfer to Tartu, Estonia's second-largest city.

After settling into your accommodation, take some time to enjoy Tartu's young, bohemian atmosphere, as it's famous for being a city of students and artists. Stroll its historic streets, starting in Town Hall Square with a visit to the statue of Kissing Students. Nearby you'll find St. John's Church with its many terracotta sculptures, plus Tartu University, which was founded in 1632. Enjoy dinner at one of its hip eateries near the university.

Cycling Route: About 40 miles (60 km)

Day 4: Cycle Saaremaa Island - Transfer to Kuressaare

Lighthouse on the Sõrve Peninsula
Lighthouse on the Sõrve Peninsula

Wake up early for a scenic ferry ride to, Saaremaa Island, Estonia's largest island. With little traffic and flat roads, Saaremaa provides the perfect rural setting for cycling. It's also a great place to get an idea of what life was like throughout Estonia before mass development, as Saaremaa maintains its calm atmosphere and simple way of living.

You'll start your ride along scenic roads, following the coastline of the Baltic Sea while you enjoy views of forests, rocky beaches, dramatic sea cliffs, and the famous lighthouse on Sõrve Peninsula. Then make your way to the village of Angla, where you'll visit the iconic trestle windmills at Angla Windmill Park. There's a small museum in the park that depicts peasant life in Estonia.

In the late afternoon, you'll transfer to Kuressaare, the capital of Saaremaa Island. Enjoy some time exploring its impressive fortress, Kuressaare Castle. You can also relax at the city's public beach or stroll through the historic center and enjoy dinner in one of the many restaurants lining the main street.

Cycling Route: About 35 miles (50 km)

Day 5: Bike the Noarootsi Peninsula - Depart Tallinn

Ruins of Haapsalu Castle
Ruins of Haapsalu Castle

After a leisurely breakfast, you'll have more time to explore the city of Kuressaare. Visit the castle museum, take a walk around the park surrounding the fortress, and/or enjoy one last moment on the shores of Saaremaa Island.

Afterward, you'll head back to Tallinn via the ferry and a car transfer, stopping in the town Haapsalu on the way. You'll tour the historic town, visiting its castle ruins before setting off on your final ride of the trip. Today's route connects Haapsalu to the town of Nõva via the scenic Noarootsi Peninsula. You'll pass gorgeous Estonian countryside, with goats grazing in the fields and old farmhouses in the distance, plus ride along beautiful coastline full of sandy beaches and thick forests. 

In the afternoon, you'll return to Tallinn. You can either spend some more time in the city or transfer to the airport to catch your flight home. 

Cycling Route: About 28 miles (45 km)

Map

Map of Bike Estonia's Cities & Countryside - 5 Days
Map of Bike Estonia's Cities & Countryside - 5 Days