By 11:00 pm, it’s still light outside here.
Nestled between the 59th and 60th latitude, this former province of the Soviet Union is a seldom visited country in Europe that is fast becoming one of the ‘must see’ destinations of the world. With its old town oozing charm, punctuated by fairy tale fortress spires, and sections of the old wall that snakes its way around the perimeter, it’s easy to be mesmerized by Tallinn. If you go in the summer, it never gets dark.
The old town is most people’s first orientation to the country if they fly into Lennart Meri International Airport and we were no different. A 5 euro Uber ride into town with our jovial driver ‘Vladim’ took the edge off that most people have when arriving in a new country and we felt instantly at ease.
Reading Turns Self-Guided with ‘Epic’
Before day trips out in Tallinn, Ava has been reading short stories on ‘Epic‘ a reading platform with thousands of books that can be assigned to children in a class and have ‘read to me’ options, customizable reading levels with lexile ranges along with post reading questionaries. For a family on the go like us, it’s been great and has given our daughter access to many different books without having to lug them around. Since we finished her first of 3 chapter books last week, this has been a great platform to continue her love of reading.
Things to do While in Tallinn
I’m going to go off script from what trip advisor and lonely planet might say about this destination, but below is what made our time in the capital here sublime.
- Explore the Old Town Spend a day walking around the old town. With its cobblestone streets, it’s easy to get lost and find yourself all at once. Be sure to climb the steeple of St. Olaf’s church overlooking the city.
- Escape from a Harry Potter Escape Room We’ve enjoyed a dinner and escape room in many places around the world, but the staff at ‘In-Game‘ have gone above and beyond escape rooms. They gave us a fun introduction to set the scene and their rooms were more than tastefully done with amazing props and puzzles to entertain our whole family.
- Eat at Tbilisi This Georgian restaurant has not only great food, but has some of the best dumplings that our daughter has ever eaten in her life. The restaurant sits in a 300 year old building with antiques from the mother country to inspire you to add it to your bucket list.
- Have a Nightcap at Koht One of the things that surprised us about Estonia is the great craft beer scene. I thought this accolade would automatically go to Germany, Czech Republic or Belgium, but every restaurant had local craft beer and ‘Koht’ serves them up in a hidden alley behind the tourist trappings. A fireplace and intimate seating gives it warm feel.
- Take a Day trip to Helsinki We took the Megastar ferry 2 hours to Helsinki and met our friends Anita and Karen who showed us around the Finnish capital in style. For only 60 euros for our family round trip, the boat was clean and comfortable with the downtown a cab ride away.