- Explore the medieval streets of Tallinn's Old Town
- Visit the village of Haapsalu and relax at a spa hotel
- Discover the historic manors and serene nature of Lahemaa National Park
- Tour the WWI-era planes and ships at the Estonian Maritime Museum
|Day 1||Arrive in Tallinn - City Walking Tour||Tallinn|
|Day 2||Visit Keila Waterfall - Transfer to Haapsalu||Haapsalu|
|Day 3||Explore Lahemaa National Park||Tallinn|
|Day 4||Tour of Tartu & Estonian National Museum||Tallinn|
|Day 5||Visit the Estonian Maritime Museum - Depart Tallinn|
Day 1: Arrive in Tallinn - City Walking Tour
Welcome to Tallinn, the capital of Estonia! Upon arriving in the city, you'll transfer to your hotel where you can take some time to settle in before meeting your guide for a short walking tour.
You'll start on the cobbled streets of Tallinn's Old Town and admire its defensive towers, old stone walls, and historic houses. Head to Town Hall Square to visit the 15th-century hall plus Europe's oldest continuously-operating pharmacy. You won't miss Toompea Hill, atop which sits a castle that now houses Estonia's Parliament. You'll also visit the Cathedral of Saint Mary (which dates to the 13th century) and the Russian Revival Alexander Nevsky Cathedral.
After the tour, enjoy a traditional Estonian meal at the oldest-operating eatery in Tallinn, the Maiasmokk Café. Also here is a marzipan museum where a local artist decorates marzipan figures.
Spend the rest of the day at Kadriorg Park, home to an impressive baroque palace built for Catherine I of Russia. Visit the art museum, home to exhibits from the 16th through the 20th century, then take a stroll around the grounds. Here you'll find manicured lawns, Dutch-style canals, French-inspired pathways, and a Russian garden. Nearby is the Presidential Palace and KUMU, an excellent art museum featuring works by both Estonians and international artists.
Day 2: Visit Keila Waterfall - Transfer to Haapsalu
In the morning, you'll leave Tallinn on a road trip about 30 minutes to Keila Waterfall, which is part of the Keila River in Northern Estonia. At 20 feet (6 meters) high, it's one of the most powerful waterfalls in the country aside from Narva Waterfall and Jägala Waterfall.
Along the way, you'll stop at the coastal limestone cliffs in Turisalu as well as Padise Abbey, a Cistercian monastery that dates to the early 14th century. Nearby is a closed military town plus the Murru Prison and Rummu Quarry, all of which provide insight into the country's wartime history.
After the waterfall, you'll drive another hour down the coast to the seaside resort town of Haapsalu, which is known for its narrow streets, romantic wooden houses, and seaside promenade. Visit Haapsalu Castle, which was founded in the middle of the 13th century and was used until the end of the 17th century.
Later in the afternoon, you'll settle into your accommodation at a spa hotel. Here you can enjoy relaxing treatments before dinner.
Day 3: Explore Lahemaa National Park
Enjoy breakfast at your hotel, then meet your driver for a trip to Lahemaa National Park. This gorgeous protected area is home to unspoiled coastline, dense forests, hidden waterfalls, and even abandoned Soviet-era remains of a military submarine base.
Within Lahemaa National Park, you'll visit Käsmu village, which sits on a bog with many lakes and streams. You'll also stop at the nearby submarine base plus fishermen's houses and historic manor estates, including Palmse Manor. It doubles as a museum of the Baltic-German aristocracy, complete with a wine cellar that contains more than 130 varietals including local sweet-berry wines.
After touring the park you'll return to Tallinn. Along the way, your guide will point out unique places and reveal historical facts to help you better understand the culture of northern Estonia. Upon arrival in Tallinn, you'll settle into your hotel and can then enjoy dinner in the city.
Day 4: Tour of Tartu - Transfer to Tallinn
After breakfast, you'll travel two hours south from Tallinn to Estonia's second-largest city, Tartu. Upon arrival, you'll tour the acclaimed Estonian National Museum, which features many exhibits celebrating the country's national heritage.
Then it will be time to discover Tartu's young, bohemian atmosphere on a guided walking tour. After all, this city is home to Tartu University, which was established in 1632 and is the national university. The tour begins 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 the university.
After your guided tour, grab lunch at one of Tartu's trendy cafes. You'll then have some free time to continue exploring the city on your own. Check out the red-brick relics of the Tartu Dome Church, then stroll the paths of the riverside Ülejõe Park. In the late afternoon, you'll return to Tallinn in time for dinner.
Day 5: Visit the Estonian Maritime Museum - Departure
On your last day in Tallinn, you'll visit the seaplane hangar at the waterfront, which is part of the Estonian Maritime Museum. This 100-year-old hangar was built for the Tsar's navy in 1916 and has been restored to display WWI-era planes, boats, and submarines from throughout the 20th century.
Then take a stroll through the Telliskivi Creative City, an artistic enclave/industrial complex is home to designer boutiques, flea markets, galleries, eateries, and drinking establishments. Here you can have lunch and do some last-minute souvenir shopping. At the appropriate time, you'll head to the airport or train station to embark on your journey home.