Maps Restaurants Cafés Nightlife Sightseeing Shopping Events Hotels
THE OFFICIAL TRAVEL GUIDE OF
October - November 2019
inyourpocket.com N°128 Complimentary copy
Noblessner The city’s up and coming hotspot
Contents E S S E N TI A L C I TY G U I D E S
Helpful things everyone should know
Arriving & Transport Arriving
Getting here is half the fun Transport Navigating Tallinn
Helpful things everyone should know
Culture & Events 10 Major events, cinemas, art galleries and more
Noblessner at sunset. Photo: Martin Demeljuga
24/48 hours in Tallinn 14 Tips on what to do, see and eat in 24 or 48 hours
Noblessner - the city’s new hotspot 34 Art, culture and good food
Essential Old Town The medieval centre in a nutshell
Sightseeing tours By bus, by bike or by tram
Museums Covering city history, from tunnels to airplanes
Kadriorg & Pirita Tallinn’s most beautiful park and seaside await
Dark Side of Tallinn 37 Explore the city’s dark side
Kalamaja - Tallinn’s artistic district
The hip and happening neighbourhood
Take action or take a breather
From sushi to sült
The hottest places in the caffeine scene
Find your perfect party
A bed for every budget
Living in Tallinn
Talking with Stewart Johnson
Shopping & Directory
From books to shoe repair
Maps & Index Old Town map City centre map facebook.com/TallinnInYourPocket
97 98 - 99 October - November 2019
Foreword The foggy café windows may be a sign that winter is coming, but it’s not all darkness and gloom because the fun and festivities continue all year long. There is always something going on, like concerts and events, which you can read about on page 10. How much do you know about Estonia? Until February 2020, we’ll publish 100 fun and interesting facts about Estonia in honour of the country’s 100th anniversary. While the Old Town is fascinating, we urge you to venture out of the city centre and visit one of Tallinn’s many cool suburbs, like Noblessner. Some great new shops and restaurants have opened in this quickly growing neighbourhood that we think you’d like to try. If you’re only here for a short while, you’ll want to turn to page 14 for a look at our feature for our tips on what to do, see and eat in 24 or 48 hours. And be sure to turn to page 37 for a look at the dark side of Tallinn to learn more about its ghosts and other spooky tales. So get out there and start exploring!
cover story Just past the fascinating Seaplane Harbour, and Patarei Prison, Noblessner is quickly continuing the development of the seaside in Kalamaja. The old submarine shipyard is now an up-and-coming area with plenty going on. Read more from pages 34 - 36.
E S S E N TI A L
Publication details C I T Y G U I D E S Publisher Linnajuht OÜ Printed by Reusner, Tallinn Published 12,000 - 15,000 copies, 6 times per year ISSN 1406-2690 © OÜ Linnajuht Company Office & Accounts Vana-Viru 4, 10111 Tallinn, Estonia Tel/fax. +372 644 64 70 email@example.com, www.inyourpocket.com Accountant Marian Puusepp Editorial Editor In Chief Nat A. Singer Editor Kristina Lupp Contributing Editor Steve Roman Researcher Irja Luks Designer Küllike Johannson-Singer Photography Küllike Johannson-Singer and Nat A. Singer unless otherwise stated. Cover © Martin Dremljuga Sales & Circulation Circulation Linnajuht OÜ Account Manager Irja Luks Copyright notice Text, maps and photos copyright Linnajuht OÜ. Maps copyright cartographer. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced in any form, except brief extracts for the purpose of review, without written permission from the publisher and copyright owner. The brand name In Your Pocket is used under license from UAB In Your Pocket (Bernardinu 9-4, Vilnius, Lithuania tel. (+370-5) 212 29 76).
estonia.inyourpocket.com 4 Tallinn In Your Pocket
Direct links: iyp.me/go-estonia tallinn.inyourpocket.com
Basics Here are some helpful tips on how best to avoid some embarrassing situations while spending your time in Tallinn.
Tallinn Population: 453,033 (as of 01.01.2019) Density: 2,849.26 inhabitants/km2 Ethnic composition: Estonians 53.2%, Russians 38.1%, Ukrainians 3.4%, others 5.3%
You should have no problems filling your wallet in Tallinn - cash machines (ATMs) are never hard to find. Big banks are usually your best bet for exchanging currency. At night and on weekends, however, decent exchanges are more elusive. Tavid at Aia 5 has good rates, especially when changing somewhat larger amounts and also runs an allnight exchange window that will do in a pinch. Their night rates are higher than daytime rates though. Another place that offers very good rates is Eurex at Viru väljak 4 (Viru Centre).
Ethnic groups About 68% of Estonia’s population is made up of ethnic Estonians, descendents of Finno-Ugric tribes that settled this area about 5,000 years ago. The largest minority in today’s Estonia is by far the Russians, at roughly 26% of the national population. Along with Ukrainians and Byelorussians, thousands of Russians moved or were sent here during Soviet times, and chose to remain after independence. Though some integration is taking place among the younger generation, language and cultural barriers tend to keep Estonians and Russian-speakers apart.
Language Confused? Join the crowd. Estonian is completely unrelated to Russian, Latvian, Swedish, German or any other Indo-European tongue. Along with Finnish and Hungarian, Estonian belongs to the Finno-Ugric group of languages, thought to have originated somewhere beyond the Urals thousands of years ago. Luckily, the younger generation and those in the tourist industry speak English.
Religion Some locals will tell you that Estonians are all treeworshiping pagans at heart, but the truth is that this isn’t a very religious country at all. There is no state religion, and according to the 2011 census, only 29% of the population claims any religious affiliation. Of those that do, about 108,000 are Lutheran and 176,000 Russian Orthodox..
Tax free shopping ‘Tax-free’ shopping is finally starting to gain popularity in Estonia and if you are a non-EU resident and plan to spend over €38 on electronics, clothing or even souvenirs - it just might be worth trying to claim the tax back. When making a purchase just present your passport, ask for a taxfree stamp on your receipt and take receipts along with unused purchases to the customs office at the airport or border-crossings into Russia when you leave the country. facebook.com/TallinnInYourPocket
Estonia Population: 1,323,824 (as of 01.01.2019) Territory: 45,339km2 Density: 29.06 inhabitants/km2 Ethnic composition: Estonians 68.7%, Russians 24.8%, Ukrainians 1.7%, others 4.8% Islands: 1,521. The three largest are Saaremaa 2,673km2, Hiiumaa 1,023km2, and Muhu 206km2 Local time: Estonia is in the Eastern European Time Zone (GMT+2hrs). Summer time (GMT+3hrs) is in effect from the last Sunday of March until the last Sunday of October.
tourist information Tourist Information Centre The city’s official tourist information point is the best equipped to answer any question.QB‑5, Niguliste 2, tel. +372 645 77 77, www.visittallinn.ee. Open 09:00-17:00; Sun 10:00-15:00.
public toilets Study your geometry to avoid an embarrassing situation: A triangle pointing down signifies the men’s room (M or Meeste), while the triangle pointing up is the women’s room (N or Naiste). Visitors with pressing needs won’t be left with their legs crossed, as there are quite a few public toilets around the city. Some can be found at the Viru Gate on Valli (D-5) and there’s a Swedish-built automatic WC on Toompea Hill (B-5), nicknamed locally the ‘million-crown toilet’ due to the public outcry at its construction bill. It can be found next to the Nevski Cathedral (A-5). There’s also a few new high-tech, self-cleaning ones around the city. The most central is right next to Tammsaare Park (D-5), and others can be found at; Toompark near Balti Jaam (A-4). However, the fear of being trapped inside may deter the more easily frightened, no matter how badly they need to ‘pee’. October - November 2019
Arriving & Transport
As European capitals go, Tallinn is a remarkably easy-access city. The passenger port and train station are both within shouting distance of the Old Town/centre, while the airport and bus station are a quick, cheap 10 - 15 minute taxi ride away and also easily reachable by tram.
Arriving in Tallinn By bus Buses arrive at the bus station (L-8 on the map), located just off the main highway from Tartu. Once at the station, you’ll find left luggage in the basement. ATM machines are located inside next to the main entrance. Getting to town The city centre is just 1km away, down Juhkentali tänav from behind the station. Buses N°17 and 23 leave directly from the coach area near platform 1, heading to Vabaduse väljak (4th stop) in the centre while trams N°2 and 4 run from nearby Tartu maantee to Viru väljak (4th stop), also in the centre. A taxi to Old Town should cost about €6. By car Crossing the border from Latvia is completely hassle-free now that the Baltics belong to Schengen. Getting over the border from Russia will take quite a bit longer. In both cases, be sure to bring your car’s registration papers and a valid insurance policy, such as the international green card. You can also buy insurance right at the border station. Please note that the speed limit on highways is 90km/h, in the cities 50km/h, unless otherwise noted, and the headlights have to be always turned on. For fares and regulations on bringing a car by ship from Finland or Sweden, contact the ferry companies. By plane Tallinn’s airport (M-9 on the map) may be a super-modern affair, but it’s so small you’re never in danger of getting lost. Once past the luggage receiving area, you’ll find ATMs and currency exchange in the centre of the hall; toilets and car rental offices are downstairs. 6 Tallinn In Your Pocket
Getting to town A taxi ride to the centre roughly costs €10 and takes between 10 and 20 minutes. You can also take tram N°4 or bus N°2 just outside the airport to the down town. Tram leaves every 5-10 minutes from 05:30 until 00:45. Bus leaves approximately every 20 minutes from 06:20 until 23:30. By ship Most ferries and catamarans arrive at the Passenger Port, terminals A, B and D (see area K/L-6 on the map). Left luggage and a helpful information booth can be found in the main hall of terminal A. Exchange offices are plentiful but not always economical. ATMs are just as easy to find. Terminal D, located just across the small neck of water, has similar services. Lindaline’s boats arrive at the neighbouring Linnahall Speedboat Harbour. NB! Terminal D (Tallink) is under construction till end of June 2020. Please check signage in the terminal and allow extra time for disembarking. Getting to town You can just head for the spires of Old Town on foot, but a taxi from the Passenger Port or the Linnahall should cover the short ride to town for €4 - 5. By train Arriving by train at Tallinn’s Balti Jaam (A-3/4 on the map) puts you just a couple hundred metres from the walls of Old Town. Since renovations the station itself is no longer a Soviet-era relic and now includes a small grocery store, a nice restaurant and even a day spa, in case you need to unwind after your journey. Left luggage is in the back of the main hall, just off the breeze-way that leads to the platforms. The exchange booth (across from left luggage) offers decent rates on all Scandinavian, Baltic and Russian currencies. ATMs are just next to the front doors. Getting to town Just cross the street at the underpass and walk up Nunne tänav into Old Town, or take tram N°1 or 2 from behind the station five stops to the Hobujaama stop. Avoid the taxis that wait here. tallinn.inyourpocket.com
Arriving & Transport Public transport Public transport Tallinn’s public transportation system is a fairly straightforward network of buses, trolley-buses and trams, all of which use the same ticketing-system. Trams provide the simplest way to get around downtown areas. From the centre, most major bus routes leave from the terminal under the Viru Centre, or from Vabaduse väljak (Freedom Square). Routes and schedules are listed in English at https://tallinn.pilet.ee/buy where you can also find a handy route planner to help you navigate your way through Tallinn’s pubic transport system. Detailed route maps are also posted at many public transport stops and stations. Tickets: The same tickets/cards are good on all three systems. The simplest version is the single-ride ticket which can be bought from the driver for €2 or with pilet.ee app. If you are planning on travelling a lot via public transport, other types of tickets are good for specific periods of time and are sold in Tourist Information Centre (Niguliste 2), bus station, Balti jaam train station, airport, ferry terminals A & D, Selver and Prisma supermarket info desks, or R-Kiosk shops. All longer period tickets are now e-tickets and come in the form of a plastic Smartcard (ühiskaart). You’ll need to rent the card for a one-time deposit fee of (€2) and then purchase ‘virtual’ tickets that will be added to the card. These come in the form of a 24-hour (€3), 72-hour (€5), 5-day (€6) or 30-day (€23) pass. The card will need to be validated upon entering the vehicle. Each time you add another ‘E-ticket’ to the card you’ll need to repeat this process. One-hour Tallinn tickets (€1.10) may also be purchased onboard using Mastercard, Maestro, Visa and Visa Electron bank cards with contactless interfaces.Qwww.tallinn.pilet.ee/buy.
Parking Tallinn is so centralised and pedestrian-friendly that there’s absolutely no reason to bring a car. If you happen to be here with your own set of wheels though, keep in mind that finding parking in downtown Tallinn, especially during working hours, can be a real nightmare. Public parking on streets in the town centre, as well as a few streets in Old Town, costs €1.5 - 6/hour, depending on the zone. Look for posted signs to tell you the price and the hours/days that paid parking is in effect. Buy per-hour parking passes from streetside vending machines or kiosks, and be sure to leave a parking clock (or barring that a written note) on your dashboard to mark the time that you first parked. If all this sounds too complicated, you can just use the following guarded central parking lots/garages: Europark Toompea 3 €2.40/hour.QB‑6, Toompea 3, www.europark.ee. Rotermann parking house Entrance from Ahtri street. €2.40/hr.QE‑4, Rotermanni 5, www.europark.ee. Open 24hrs. Viru Centre parking house €2/hour.QE‑5, Viru väljak 4, www.parkimine.ee. Open 24hrs. facebook.com/TallinnInYourPocket
airport Lennart Meri - Tallinn Airport Voted third best airport in Europe, Tallinn’s airport is a modern affair, but still so small there’s never a worry about getting lost. Officials still recommend you arrive 2 hours before your flight though. A taxi ride from the centre roughly costs €10 and takes between 10 and 20 minutes. Alternatively, tram N°4 from the Viru stop will conveniently take you to the airport in just 20 minutes. You can also take bus N°2 from the A. Laikmaa stop on Laikmaa street, located between the Viru Shopping Centre and Tallink Hotel.QM‑9, Tartu mnt. 101, tel. +372 605 88 88 (24hr flight info), www.tallinn-airport.ee.
Buses If you’re travelling city-to-city in the Baltics or around Estonia and you don’t have your own car, the bus is definitely the way to go. It’s also a good way to meet local students. Connections are frequent and cheap, allowing you to cross the country for the same money you might spend on a taxi in Tallinn. Bus Station Tallinn’s small bus station has been recently renovated to suit the modernity of its passengers. Tickets are available inside the station or from the driver (let ticket-holders get on the bus first). Ticket prices depend on the bus company and route. On international routes it is advisable to reserve or buy your ticket in advance. On internal routes this is generally not necessary, however there are exceptions: On Fridays and Sundays buses to popular weekend destinations like Pärnu or Tartu tend to fill up quickly, so buying your ticket earlier in the day will guarantee a spot. Get to the station by taking city trams N°2 and 4 from the centre, or bus N°17 or 23 next to the Solaris Centre, to the Bussijaam stop.QL‑8, Lastekodu 46, tel. +372 680 09 00, www.bussijaam.ee. Open 05:00-01:00. Ecolines A large bus company with routes throughout the Baltics, Europe and probably the best way to get to Riga from Tallinn - for the price. Ecolines is generally less expensive than other transportation options or bus lines, without compromising on comfort or quality. Conveniently you can book and pay for tickets via the internet, this option also comes with a discount and you won’t have to wait in line at the ticket office. See website for additional info. QL‑8, Tartu mnt. 68, tel. +372 606 22 17, www.ecolines. ee. Open 07:00-21:00; Tue, Wed 07:00-19:00. PW Lux Express Lux Express runs most international bus routes from Estonia and also several domestic routes. Seats can be reserved in advance by calling ahead. You can also buy tickets from the website. Find the office on the bus station’s first floor. QL‑8, Lastekodu 46, tel. +372 680 09 09, fax (+372) 680 09 01, www.luxexpress.eu. Open 07:30-19:00. October - November 2019
Arriving & Transport taxis
rental bikes & scooters
Taxi stands can be found near major hotels and in several locations just outside Old Town, but grabbing a taxi on the street usually comes with a premium fare. Taxis typically charge a starting fee plus a kilometre rate. Luckily the city government has implemented a law governing taxis and have put a cap on the starting fare (max. €5.50) and per kilometre rates (€1.10/ km) - so even if you just hail a cab you shouldn’t be in for too much of a surprise. Ordering by phone is the best strategy though, as usually they have better rates. Another option is to use one of the numerous taxi ordering apps like Bolt (former Taxify), Taxigo or Drivr to name a few. The often controversal Uber ‘taxi’ service is also availble in Tallinn.
16 Euro Hostel bike rental Not only do they offer cheap hostel rooms but now you can also rent a bike from them for the same price as a room night - if you borrow it for the full day. Pretty steep cash deposit for the bike though, so you might need to sell some of your stash to ride their wheels. QC‑4, Munga 4, tel. +372 507 47 66, www.16eur.ee. 1 hour for €2 and 24 hours for €12.
Krooni Takso €2.50 + €0.50 - 0.55/km.Qtel. +372 638 12 12/1212, www.kroonitakso.ee. Peretakso Only large taxis available, best for small groups. €4.80 + €0.95/km.Qtel. +372 646 00 06/16111, www. peretakso.ee. Tallink Takso €3.95 + €0.89 - 0.99/km.Qtel. +372 640 89 21/1921, www.tallinktakso.ee.
City Bike City Bike offers over 200 bikes for rent, which are regularly maintained and always in good condition. A lock and helmet are included in the rental price, and rainproof clothing is available (free of charge) if needed. Bookings are recommended for groups or special requirements. 24hrs - €15, 2 days - €27. See website for more details.QC‑4, Vene 33, tel. +372 511 18 19, www.citybike.ee. Open 10:00-18:00. Y Rental scooters If you’re looking for an alternative way to get around town, there are two companies that rent electric scooters - CityBee and Bolt are both app-based and offer scooters for the same price. There is a €0.50 fee for unlocking the scooter and after it’s €0.10 per minute. Scooters can be found using the app. For more detailed information visit: https://www.citybee. ee/en or https://bolt.eu/scooters/.
The vast majority of visitors travelling onward from Tallinn go by ship, and it’s no wonder - the city has excellent, affordable ferry connections to Helsinki, Stockholm and Saint Petersburg. On the Tallinn-Helsinki route, you have the choice between large car ferries, which make the crossing in about two hours, and fast ferries (hydrofoils and catamarans), which usually take only 1.5 hours, but are seasonal and don’t run in all weather conditions. Ferries are operated by Tallink (www.tallink.ee), who have large and fast car ferries. Viking Line (www.vikingline.ee) and Eckerö Line (www.eckeroline.ee) also operate the Tallinn-Stockholm line. St.Peterline (www.st.peterline.ee) runs a weekly Tallinn-St.Petersburg-Helsinki route. Ferries leave from various terminals of the city’s two passenger harbours, clustered just outside Old Town (see area G-4 on the map).
Train travel in Estonia hasn’t gained the popularity it has elsewhere in Europe.The only real international connections are to point east (Moscow, St.Petersburg and beyond). Although plans are under way, forget about taking the train to Riga or Vilnius. It is, however, possible to get to Tartu and other Estonian cities by rail. Two separate companies cover Estonia’s train system: GoRail (www.gorail.ee) handles international, Elron (www.elron.ee) operates the local electric trains and the inter-city diesel trains.
Passenger Port Nearly all ferry companies use the Tallinn Old City Harbour’s Passenger Port, which is divided into terminals A, B and D. NB! Terminal D (Tallink) is under construction until June 2020. Please check signage in the terminal and allow extra time for boarding. QE‑2, Sadama 25, tel. +372 631 85 50, www.portoftallinn.com. Information open in A-Terminal 06:00 - 19:00, in D-Terminal 06:00 - 22:30, Sat 06:00 - 20:30. 8 Tallinn In Your Pocket
Train Station (Balti jaam) Located just outside Old Town, Tallinn’s revamped train station boasts a trendy café, fountain, a day spa and a small grocery store, but unfortunately has little information posted in English. Luckily, the system is not too confusing and there are information and ticket booths (open 07:00 - 21:30), usually staffed by someone multi-lingual. For all domestic routes, you don’t even have to bother with this process since the same tickets can always be purchased right on board the trains themselves - as long as you know which track your train will leave from. Tickets for trains to Russia are sold at the ticket booths on the 2nd floor, which are open daily 08:30 - 19:00.QA‑4, Toompuiestee 37, www.baltijaam.ee. tallinn.inyourpocket.com
History 3,000BC Finno-Ugric tribes arrive from the east and settle along the north Baltic coast, mixing with Neolithic tribes. 1st Century Roman historian Tacitus writes of a local tribe called Aestii. 12th Century In 1154, Arab cartographer al-Idrisi marks Tallinn on his map as Koluvan, describing it as a seasonal stronghold - the first mention of the city in historic records. 13th Century In 1202 the Pope calls for a crusade against the pagans around the Baltic Sea. Bishop Albert founds the Order of the Knights of the Sword. This leads to four decades of bloody battles and shifting alliances among the Germans (based in Riga), Danes, Swedes, Russians, Lithuanians and local tribes. In 1219 King Voldemar II of Denmark takes the stronghold of the north Estonian Rävala people as a base for his forces (hence the name Tallinn: Taani = Danish, linn = city). German merchants settle the town, and in 1248 are granted the right to use Lübeck Law, effectively making Tallinn an autonomous entity. In the 1280s, Tallinn joins the powerful Hanseatic League of trading cities. 16th Century Estonians suffer another bout of shifting borders and imposed military service during the Livonian War (15581583). Ivan the Terrible advances claims on Estonia. Denmark and Poland enter the fray, but Sweden quickly gains control of the territory. Intermittent warfare with Poland lasts into the next century. 17th Century The Swedish period in Estonian history is marked by cultural advancement. Tartu University opens in 1632 and by the close of the century nearly every parish has a school. In 1645 Denmark cedes Saaremaa to Sweden, joining Estonia under a single force for the first time. 18th Century Sweden battles Russia, Denmark and Poland in the Northern War (1700-1721), losing Estonia to Russia in 1710. During the 200 years of tsarist rule that follow, Estonia’s peasants live in the same conditions of near-slavery as the serfs of Russia. In 1739 the Bible is published in Estonian. 19th Century So-called Estophiles study the local language and found consciousness-raising societies. Literacy spreads and Estonian-language periodicals appear. The second half of the century is marked by the National Awakening: the formation of a national consciousness among Estonians and an active period of scholarship and literary creation. The first song festival, held in Tartu in 1869, represents the first public demonstration of Estonian national identity. Tsar Alexander III stifles this when he comes to the throne in 1881, initiating a period of intense Russification. The first republic Estonia takes advantage of the chaos in Russia caused by WWI and the Bolshevik Revolution, declaring independence on February 24, 1918. But by the end of February, Germany takes the infant country by force. When Germany capitulates in November Red forces move in. The War for Independence lasts 13 months. In the Tartu Peace Treaty, signed February 2, 1920, Soviet Russia renounces claims to the territory “for facebook.com/TallinnInYourPocket
all time”. In 1921 the Republic of Estonia is accepted into the League of Nations. Reforms progress quickly and social welfare laws are on a par with those in Europe. A political crisis in the mid-1930s brings the young republic to the verge of authoritarianism. President Konstantin Päts bans political parties and restricts civil rights but maintains popular support. World War II On August 23, 1939, the USSR and Germany sign the Molotov-Ribbentrop pact, in which secret protocols carve Eastern Europe into spheres of influence. On June 16, 1940, the USSR accuses the Baltic states of aggression and demands the right to occupy them. ‘Elections’ take place July 14 - 15, with Soviet-approved candidates. The phoney parliament applies for admittance to the USSR, which is granted August 6. WWII continues to rage across Europe and by the end of 1941 the Nazis win Estonia from the Soviets. The German occupation lasts three years. Soviet forces begin air attacks March 15, 1942, and cause serious damage in the infamous attack of March 9, 1944. By September the Germans have fled. Estonia is declared a Republic again on September 18, but Soviet forces reach Tallinn four days later. Soviet occupation In the first years of the renewed Soviet regime, 36,000 Estonians are arrested and accused of aiding the Nazis. At the same time 30,000 - 35,000 people flee to the woods to resist the regime as Forest Brothers. In the years following, Estonia endures political repression and isolation, while Estonians who had fled to the West try to keep their culture alive in exile. During the post-Stalin period, life in Estonia takes on a bureaucratic routine similar to that found elsewhere in the USSR. Over the coming decades, hundreds of thousands of ethnic Russians are sent to live in the Estonian territory. In the 1970s and 80s, Finnish TV broadcasts give Tallinn residents a glimpse of life in the West. Restoration of Independance and beyond What had started as a series of environmental protests in 1987 quickly develops into a new National Awakening as demonstrations against the system become more open. From June 10-14, 1988, over 100,000 people a night pack the Tallinn Song Festival Grounds. The events of the summer are henceforth known as the Singing Revolution. Later that same year, in a move known as the beginning of the end for the Soviet Union, the Supreme Soviet of the Estonian SSR passes a declaration of sovereignty. On February 24, 1989, the Estonian flag is raised over Tallinn, inciting protests and massive strikes, which continue until March 3, 1991, when 78% of voters cast their vote for independence in a referendum and on August 20, Estonia declares independence. The Estonian kroon becomes the first national currency introduced in the former Soviet Union. On November 13, 1999 Estonia becomes the 135th member of the World Trade Organization (WTO). On March 29, 2004 Estonia joins NATO. On May 1 Estonia becomes an EU member as the bloc expands to encompass ten new states. December 21, 2007 Estonia joins Schengen. January 1, 2011 Estonia joins the common European currency Euro. October - November 2019
Culture & Events While Tallinn may not be a cultural metropolis like London, Paris or New York, people here do still like to feed their souls. The town is home to a number of theatres, an opera house, several interesting museums, galleries, and even a couple art-house cinemas. If you are still thirsting for more, an exhaustive calendar of culture is available at www.culture.ee.
main events Monet2Klimt - Innovative Multimedia Art Exhibition Helios Hall (C-5, Sauna 1). Open 12:00 - 20:00, www. monet2klimt.ee. Located in over 100-year-old cinema building on Sauna street in the Old Town, this is perhaps the best venue to experience such a unique show. Watch the works of Klimt, Van Gogh, and Monet come to life, bringing out the important elements of famous paintings you may have never noticed before. One hundred and forty images are integrated with classical music for a show that lasts 45 minutes. Pop in anytime throughout this interactive exhibition and stay as long as you like. And, best of all, the exhibition is exciting for both young and old.
Autumn Jazz 2019 September 12 - November 1, various venues around Tallinn, www.jazzkaar.ee. While already underway, this year’s Autumn Jazz festival will bring many local and international artists to Tallinn. On October 26, listen to the Itamar Borochov Quartet (USAIsrael). The festival closes on November 1 with Sylvain Darrifourcq In Love With (France) and the Jussi Fredriksson Trio (Finland). In Love With’s new album Coitus Interruptus has been composed focusing on the idea of avoiding an ending point, so you can expect a truly unique and experimental sound. For more information on this year’s programme visit the website.
where to get tickets Tickets to most major events are available from: Piletilevi E-5, Viru Centre, Viru väljak 4/6, www. piletilevi.ee. Also at: D-6, Solaris Centre, Estonia pst. 9. Estonia’s major concert organiser, Eesti Kontsert, has its own box office in Tallinn at D-6, Estonia pst. 4, tel. 614 77 00, firstname.lastname@example.org, www.concert.ee. 10 Tallinn In Your Pocket
Tallinn Architecture Biennale TAB September 11 - November 17, various venues throughout Tallinn, www.tab.ee. Tallinn Architecture Biennale, or TAB, offers a diverse international programme that encourages collaboration between Estonian and foreign architects, as well as with the public. The 4th annual TAB will be curated by Dr Yael Reisner, architect, researcher, teacher, and curator. Also included in the programme is the curatorial exhibition, symposium and vision competition (all curated by TAB Head curator Dr Yael Reisner), as well as the international architecture schools’ exhibition and installation programme.
Installation competition's winning art piece "Steampunk" in front of Museum of Estonian Architecture (see page 26)
Tallinn International Horse Show 2019 October 4 - 6, Saku Suurhall (see p.13), www. tallinnhorseshow.ee. ‘Hi-yo Silver, away!’ Celebrating its seventeenth year, the Tallinn International Horse Show is set to be an equestrian experience extraordinaire. Horses and riders from all over Europe will try to jump and trot their way to a hoofed victory in this Central European League World Cup event. This hoofed extravaganza has become a must-see for the whole family. David Garret October 11, Saku Suurhall (see p.13), www.piletilevi.ee. Classical music rock star and master violinist will return to the stage at Saku Suurhall in October. His world tour ‘Unlimited - Greatest Hits - Live’, celebrates the musician’s tenth anniversary using this form of crossover music. David Garrett is known for his fabulous versions of popular songs like ‘Smells Like Teen Spirit’ and ‘Purple Rain, among many other classic rock hits. Tallinn Fashion Week 2019 October 16 - 19, Kultuurikatel (see p.12), www.estonianfashion. eu. Held in autumn, the last of the year’s large fashion events to take place in Tallinn is aptly named Tallinn Fashion Week. Started almost a decade ago, its aim is to bring Estonian designers Photo: Virge Viertek into the spotlight both at tallinn.inyourpocket.com
Culture & Events home and to international audiences - the focus here is not so much to showcase new collections according to seasons, as ‘Fashion Weeks’ do in the larger markets, but to highlight the creativity that this country is producing. As time goes on, perhaps this event will evolve into something bigger with international buyers in the audience. Estonian designers are certainly talented enough. Sarah Brightman November 2, Saku Suurhall (see p.13), www.piletilevi.ee. One of the world’s most rare and powerful female voices will grace the stage at Saku Suurhall in November. The concert is part of Sarah Brightman’s world tour for her new album ‘Hymn’. Her career, spanning almost four decades, has brought her from her debut in ‘Cats’ in 1981 to selling over tens of millions of albums worldwide. Tickets are on sale at Piletilevi or VIP packages are available through the artist’s website. St. Martin’s Day Fair 2019 November 7 - 10, Saku Suurhall (see p.13), www.folkart.ee. In honour of St. Martin’s Day, the Estonian Folk Art and Handicraft Union organises this fair involving workshops, handicraft sales, national cuisine, folk music, ‘Mardi’ costumes and the general promotion of the folk lifestyle. A perfect place to load up on gifts for... yeah that’s right, Christmas. But personally we like it best for homebrewed beer, dark bread slathered with butter and the smoked meat... mmmm. Ballet Royal Gala 2019 November 9, Alexela Concert Hall (see p.13), www. piletilevi.ee. For the fifth year in a row, the international gala performance, Ballet Royal Gala will dazzle will a special programme. If you’re a true connoisseur of ballet, this is an event not to be missed, where you can enjoy world-famous Etoiles and ballet masterpieces of the most prominent classical and contemporary choreographers from around the world. Held in collaboration with the operas of Paris, Berlin, Havana, Oslo, Cuba, Bucharest, Bolshoi, Mariinsky and others, each of the international ballet schools will have their own distinguishing and pronounced features. Without having to leave Tallinn, you can enjoy the ballets of the world, all in one place. Tallinn Vegan Fair 2019 November 9 -10, Kultuurikatel (see p.12), https://www. facebook.com/veganfair. The first and largest vegan food fair in the Baltics will take place at Tallinn’s Creative Hub for the ninth year in a row. This ever-growing fair dedicates its theme this year to facebook.com/TallinnInYourPocket
world-changers and spices. For full programme details visit the website. Tallinn Comedy Festival November 12 - 15, various venues throughout Tallinn, http://comedyfestival.ee. With the shorter, darker days on the way, a little bit of laughter goes a long way, and that’s exactly what the annual Tallinn Comedy Festival is for! Laugh out loud to famous comedians and up-and-coming acts, with entertainers from Estonia and around the world. Read more about this year’s programme from the website. Info for writing: http://comedyfestival.ee/en 23rd Black Nights Film Festival PÖFF November 16 - December 2, various venues throughout Tallinn, https://2019.poff.ee. Now in its 23rd year, PÖFF is one of the largest and most prestigious film festivals to be held in the Nordic nations and also the only one in the region with an international film competition programme recognised by FIAPF (Fédération Internationale des Associations de Producteurs de Films), only 14 film festivals in the world can boast this kind of recognition. The festival itself consists of many different events, among them are 3 sub-festivals - Animated Dreams, Just Film, Sleepwalkers and the international film industry components. The importance of PÖFF brings films and film-makers from more than 70 countries to Tallinn. In addition to the films there are some cinematic special events such as concerts, exhibitions as well as interesting lectures. Black Food Festival November 23, Põhjala factory (G-5, Marati 5), www. ticketer.ee. Liven up the dark November nights at the Black Food Festival! This popular festival, which has taken place in Berlin, London and New York arrives in Tallinn in November at Põhjala Tehas. Black food comes in all shapes and sizes, and this festival invites you to come and have a taste. Full programme details can be found on their website. Robotex International 2019 November 29 - December 1, Saku Suurhall (see p.13), https://robotex.international. The biggest robotics festival on the planet is coming to Tallinn! This annual event brings thousands of engineers, executives, and students together to be inspired by industry leaders, new startups, robotbuilding challenges, and to learn about the latest innovations. The programme includes fabulous keynotes, workshops, and more! See the full programme on the website. October - November 2019
Culture & Events cultural centre Tallinn Creative Hub Located nearby Linnahall in a host of renovated industrial buildings and just a short hop across the street from Old Town - this cultural area has lots to offer the visitor who is looking for something a little different. From concerts to workshops, film nights, theatrical performances, fashion shows, various art exhibitions, special events and even the occasional flea market - the opportunities here are endless. The Tallinn Creative Hub Garden “PADA” is open in summer and hosts a number of alternative events throughout the season. Entrance to the garden and café from Kalasadama 6. The opening hours vary widely so check the website and their Facebook page for details about current happenings.QD‑2, Põhja pst. 27a, tel. +372 56 20 11 15, www.kultuurikatel.ee.
Art galleries There are loads of little galleries in Tallinn, here we have listed some of the more important and centrally-located ones. Please turn to the Kalamaja section (page 38) for the listing of Fotografiska Tallinn and the Noblessner section (page 34) for the newly opened Kai Art Centre.
documentary photos around the world. September 12 - No‑ vember 10: Jyri Pitkäneni and Eveliina Talvitie. Catch Me. See website for full programme of events and exhibitions. QJ‑7, Telliskivi 60a/5, tel. +372 522 24 22, www.dokfoto.ee/en. Open 12:00-19:00. Admission €5, reduced €3, family €10. Kullo Children’s Gallery Located in a fascinating medieval dwelling house, Kullo hosts workshops for children and highlights works by the coming generation of Estonian artists.QC‑5, Kuninga 6, tel. +372 644 68 73, www.kullo.ee/Kullo_Lastegalerii. Open 10:0018:00; closed Sat, Sun. Admission €2. Tallinn Art Hall & Galleries Drop into this imposing 1930s-era building on Vabaduse square to find some of the most daring and avant-garde temporary exhibitions from Estonia and abroad. The Art Hall’s smaller galleries (where admission is free) at Vabaduse väljak 6 and Harju 13 host separate exhibitions. August 17 - October 13: Kate Lyddon and Angela Maasalu. Throbwerk. August 23 - October 20: Jüri Arrak. Green Light. September 14 - November 17: Mercury. Tallinn Photomonth 2019. October 25 - December 15: Jane Remm. Views on a Landscape. October 18 - December 15: Vello Vinn. ∞ & ○. November 27 - 30: Body Space(d). QC‑6, Vabaduse väljak 8, tel. +372 644 28 18, www. kunstihoone.ee. Open 12:00-19:00; closed Mon, Tue. Admission €6, reduced €3, family €9. Y
Design & Architecture Gallery Changing exhibition of Estonian product design.QC‑5, Pärnu mnt. 6, tel. +372 627 36 30. Open 12:00-18:00; closed Sun. Free admission. Draakoni Gallery The famous Dragon gallery holds small, often strange exhibitions in its quaint, Old Town shop. QC‑4, Pikk 18, tel. +372 646 41 10, www.eaa.ee/draakon/. Open 11:00-18:00; Sat 11:00-17:00; closed Sun. Free admission. Haus Gallery A commercial gallery, Haus is also open to the public and has an active exhibition schedule. October 8 - November 2: Tõnis Vint and Studio 22. November 5 - December 1: Tiina Tammetalu. QC‑4, Uus 17, tel. +372 641 94 71, www.haus. ee. Open 10:00-18:00; Sat 11:00-16:00; closed Sun. Free ad‑ mission. Buzz to enter. Hobusepea Gallery The Estonian Artists’ Union operates this cosy, two-storey gallery.QC‑4, Hobusepea 2, tel. +372 627 67 77, www.eaa.ee/ hobusepea. Open 11:00-18:00; closed Tue. Free admission. Juhan Kuus Documentary Photo Centre Named after Juhan Kuus, a world-renowned documentary photographer of Estonian origin who lived and worked in South Africa. This new documentary photo centre aims to promote and support the development of documentary photography in Estonia as well as showcasing of Estonian 12 Tallinn In Your Pocket
Tallinn Art Hall and Galleries
Cinemas Tallinn’s cinemas are fairly central, and all films except kids’ films are shown in their original language with Estonian subtitles. Apollo Kino Solaris Located in the Solaris Centre, this is the most state of the art cinema in Tallinn. Tickets for evening shows cost €6.81 - 8.09, 3D costs €8.09 - 9.41.QD‑6, Estonia pst. 9, tel. +372 633 60 20, www.apollokino.ee. Artis Tallinn’s two-theatre, art-house cinema has a full schedule of independent films, Estonian productions, shorts and kids’ films. Tickets cost €5.50 - 7.20, 3D costs €6.20 - 8.80. tallinn.inyourpocket.com
Culture & Events QD‑6, Estonia pst. 9 (Solaris Centre), tel. +372 663 13 80, www.kino.ee.
folk holidays in autumn
Cinamon Kosmos During the Soviet-era, Kosmos was the most advanced cinema in the Baltics - now housing the first IMAX cinema in the region it can claim this title once again.Three theatres are housed here - the largest of which can hold up to 322 viewers and screens IMAX movies only. Regular and 3D films are also shown in the other halls. Tickets cost €6.00 - 10.90, IMAX €6.70 - 12.70. See website for programme details.QK‑8, Pärnu mnt. 45, www.kosmos. cinamonkino.com.
All Souls’ Day November 02. Estonians don’t traditionally celebrate Halloween, but they do have a day to honour their dead. All Souls’ Day (Hingedepäev) is a solemn, private affair in which the dead are honoured by placing candles in windows or on graves. Indeed any cemetery visited on that night will be filled with the eerily beautiful glow of flickering flames.
Coca-Cola Plaza This high-tech, 11-screen super cinema is most people’s first stop for Hollywood blockbusters. Now even featuring a 3D theatre. Tickets for evening shows cost €6.90 - 8.10, 3D costs €8.10 - 9.30.QE‑4, Hobujaama 5, www. forumcinemas.ee. Sõprus Now operating on a regular basis, this is the kind of place cinemaphiles hang out at. These art house films are often European or Estonian productions, but be warned - you may not be able to see them with English subtitles. Truly for the more hard core among cinema viewers. See website for schedule. Ticket booth opens one hour before ‘seance’ - not really sure what that means, but Bela Lugosi might also be in attendance. Tickets cost €3 - 6.50.QC‑5, Vana-Posti 8, tel. +372 644 19 19, www.kinosoprus.ee.
St. Martin’s Day (Mardipäev) November 10. One of the most important holidays in the rural calendar, St. Martin’s Day traditionally marks the end of the autumn season and is basically the Estonian version of Thanksgiving. On the previous evening young folks put on costumes and go door to door, performing and begging for treats. On November 10th, Estonian Open Air Museum (see p.31) holds a special event ‘Preparations for St.Mar‑ tin‘s Day‘ where you can learn about the customs of St. Martin’s Day and make a beggar’s mask for yourself.
Event and Culture Venues Alexela Concert Hall Tallinn’s world-class concert hall, complete with a stunning sound system and high-tech gadgetry.QD‑6, Esto‑ nia pst. 9, tel. +372 615 51 11, www.tallinnconcerthall. com. Estonia Concert Hall The premier venue for classical music and the home of national concert organiser Eesti Kontsert.QD‑6, Estonia pst. 4, tel. +372 614 77 60, www.concert.ee. Open 12:0019:00; Sat 12:00-17:00. On Sundays open one hour be‑ fore scheduled concerts. Estonian National Opera Tallinn’s pride and joy hosts opera, ballet and frequent performances by internationally-renowned guests. Tickets cost up to €31.QD‑6, Estonia pst. 4, tel. +372 683 12 10/(+372) 683 12 15, www.opera.ee. Box office open 11:00 - 19:00. Y Saku Suurhall Famous as the venue for the 47th Eurovision Song Contest in 2002, this 7000-seat sports and concert arena hosts large concerts and major sporting events.QF‑8, Paldiski mnt. 104b, tel. +372 660 02 00, www.sakusuurhall.ee. facebook.com/TallinnInYourPocket
St. Catherine’s Day (Kadripäev) November 25. The female version of Mardipäev and also features similar activities. Instead of animal masks however, revellers of both genders dress as women. Don’t ask, don‘t tell. All in all just good oldfashioned fun. But if you want to find out more, and take part of the fun, join the celebrations of St.Catherine‘s Day at Estonian Open Air Museum (see p.31) on November 24th. October - November 2019
24/48 hours in Tallinn Tallinn is a great city and while we’d love it if you could stay a bit longer, we understand you might only be here for a quick weekend break. Whether you’re here for one day or two, to make the most of the little time you have, here’s a quick guide to the places we think you certainly won’t want to miss.
Day One Morning Though packed with tourists almost any time of year, especially in summer, Tallinn’s Old Town is a must-visit. As one of the best-preserved medieval towns in Europe, many parts of the once 2.5km-long stone wall still stand, including 26 of its original 45 towers. Start your day with a hearty breakfast and taste traditional Estonian black bread at Rukis (review p.67).
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Tallinn’s Old Town may seem like a never-ending maze, but the area itself is not that large and is easy in just one morning. Walk up Viru Street (D-5 on the map) to Town Hall Square (C-5) and soak in the medieval charm. The square is filled with terraces in summer and various events take place there all year long. Next, follow Dunkri Street to Lühike jalg (B-5) and walk up to Toompea, the upper part
of the Old Town, where you’ll find some of the best views of the city from one of the many viewing platforms. The Estonian Parliament sits in what remains of Toompea Castle and the Alexander Nevsky Cathedral across the street, with its onion domes offers a colourful contrast to the many Lutheran churches that spot the Old Town. Find the listings on p. 14 - 15.
For lunch, head back down to the lower part of town and try Von Krahli Aed (p. 52) or Restoran V (p. 66) for something light and fresh. If you’re interested in history, the Estonian History Museum in the Great Guild Hall (p. 22) will give you an excellent overview of Estonia’s past. Continue down Pikk Street and past Fat Margaret’s Tower towards the water and the Seaplane Harbour (p. 25). This fascinating maritime museum is fun for visitors of all ages. tallinn.inyourpocket.com
24/48 hours in Tallinn TIP - If you only have 6 hours in Tallinn, after lunch head to Vene Street and walk through St. Catherine’s Passage before leaving the Old Town.
Day two Morning For breakfast, head to RØST (p. 67) in Rotermanni Quarter (E-1) for some of the best coffee in town. You won’t find a full breakfast here, but you will find some delicious, freshly-baked pastries and crusty loaves of sourdough. This growing area is filled with interesting shops and restaurants and is located between the port and the Old Town.
Fat Margaret’s Tower
Afterwards, head to Hotel Viru for a guided tour of the KGB Museum on the 23rd floor (p. 23). You’ll have to book the tour ahead of time, but this entertaining 1-hour tour is certainly worth it. If handicrafts are more your thing, peruse the shops and studios in St Catharine’s passage (p. 18) in the Old Town.
Evening Head to the hip and happening Telliskivi area (p.38), where you can peruse local design shops. Food lovers can also wander through the nearby Balti jaam market (p.93). There are plenty of dining options in the market (NB! Open until 19:00), Telliskivi Creative City or the nearby street food area, which you’ll recognise by the stacked container restaurants. Our favourites are the brewpub Humalakoda (p. 39), with on-site brewery and a large terrace overtop of the market, or Frenchy (p. 39) in Telliskivi.
Afternoon For lunch, check out Platz (p. 59), or if you want to head back to the Old Town, Allee (p. 58) offers some good lunch options or Rae Meierei (p. 52) is an interesting choice for locally-made cheese.
Telliskivi Creative City
Night Tallinn’s bustling nightlife has something to entertain every taste and budget. If it’s beer you’re after, visit the long-standing Hell Hunt pub (p. 74) for a selection of over 300 different craft beers. Great cocktails can be enjoyed on Sauna Street in places like Frank Underground (p. 76) or Sigmund Freud (p.76). Or, if you’re looking for something completely different, DM Baar (a shrine to the band Depeche Mode; p.73) or Valli Baar (p. 73) for a Millimallikas shot, a right of passage for any newcomer to Tallinn, are a good choice. If you’re still standing, end the night or begin the morning at Levist Väljas or Levikas (p. 73), as the locals call it, where many people head after everything else has closed. Turn to page 78 for a list of all of Tallinn’s nightclubs. facebook.com/TallinnInYourPocket
Hop on the tram and head towards Kadriorg (M-7, p. 30 - 32). This ornamental park and palaces were built for Catherine, the wife of the Russian Tsar Peter the Great. One palace houses the Kadriorg Art Museum and the other, the President’s Office. Art lovers should certainly visit Kumu, Estonia’s National Art Museum.
Evening For dinner, visit Mon Repos (p. 63) in Kadriorg, set in a stunning, refurbished villa, or Mantel & Korsten (p. 63), or head out toward Pirita to Kalev Yacht Club Restaurant (p. 33), for a lovely view over the marina. October - November 2019
Town Hall Square Given its age (over 800 years old) and fascinating history, Tallinn is chalk-full of sights, museums and countless stories to help you pass the time rather interestingly. Here you’lll find the must-sees and a whole lot more. Find the Tourist Information Point in the Basics section.
essential Old Town Dating back as far as the 13th century, the old section of Tallinn is what keeps most visitors occupied during their stay. The winding, cobbled streets of the medieval capital take you past half-hidden lanes, courtyards, spired churches and old, merchant houses. For centuries, what’s now the Old Town has been divided into two distinct parts: Toompea Hill, which was home to the gentry that lorded over the countryside, and Lower Town, which was a separate political entity with rights as an autonomous town.
Toompea Hill Dating back as far as the 13th century, the old section of Tallinn is what keeps most visitors occupied during their stay. The winding, cobbled streets of the medieval capital take you past half-hidden lanes, courtyards, spired churches and old, merchant houses. For centuries, what’s now the Old Town has been divided into two distinct parts: Toompea Hill, which was home to the gentry that lorded over the countryside, and Lower Town, which was a separate political entity with rights as an autonomous town. Climb Pikk jalg and you’ll find yourself on Castle Square (Lossi plats), smack-dab between the seat of the Estonian government at Toompea Castle and the 19th-century 16 Tallinn In Your Pocket
symbol of the Tsar’s power in Estonia, Alexander Nevsky Cathedral. You are standing at the birthplace of Tallinn, where the Knights of the Sword built a fortress in 1229. Alexander Nevsky Cathedral Toompea’s dominating landmark is the Russian Orthodox cathedral named for the duke who attacked southeastern Estonia and Pskov in the early 13th century. Tsar Alexander III ordered the cathedral designed in 1894 by St. Petersburg master Mikhail Preobrazhensky and it was completed in 1900. According to legend, the cathedral was built on the grave of Estonian hero Kalev and has suffered structurally as a result.QA‑5, Lossi plats 10, tel. +372 644 34 84, www.orthodox.ee. Open 08:00-18:00. Services in Russian Mon - Fri 08:30 ;18:00, Sat 08:30, Sun 09:30. Free admission. Danish King’s Garden One of the most picturesque and secluded locations in Old Town, the Danish King’s Garden is filled with trees, benches, little nooks and a great view of the Niguliste Church spire. The Garden also has a dark side, as it’s featured in the centre of many famous ghost stories about the Maiden’s Tower, Marstal Tower and Short Leg Gate Tower. The best time to visit the garden is at night with the medieval walls at your back and the beautifully lit lower tallinn.inyourpocket.com
Sightseeing - Essential Old Town town roofs providing ambience. Statues of three monks are illuminated. It also features two of Tallinn’s fortification towers, Neitsitorn (Maiden’s Tower) and Tallitorn (Marstal Tower). A replica of the 16th century Red Lion cannon was added to the garden in Spring 2018.QB‑5, Lühike jalg 9a.
en/visit-us. English guided tour every Friday at 11:00. Group tours offered with other preferred languages from Monday through Thursdays, between 10:00 16:00 and Fridays 10:00 - 15:00. Call for details and bookings. Viewing platforms The Kohtuotsa and Patkuli view platforms are usually the first place that tourists want to see when they visit Tallinn. From here, sweeping views of the town, its red-tiled roofs, its towers, its walls and all of its charm open up. Get your camera ready.QB‑4, Toompea hill.
Dome Church (Cathedral of Saint Mary the Virgin) What might be the oldest church in Estonia was founded in 1219 by the first wave of Danish forces. The Gothic exterior dates to the 14th century, but the interior was rebuilt after the 1684 fire. The Baroque pulpit (1686) and organ loft (1780) are worth a look. As you enter be sure to step on the tomb of Otto Johann Thuve, who asked that his grave be placed in this humbling location. Please be considerate and visit after the Sunday service. The tower’s viewing platform is open to the public 10:30 - 15:30, closed Mon.QA‑5, Toomkooli 6, tel. +372 644 41 40, www.eelk.ee/tallinna.toom. Open 10:00-16:00; closed Mon. Services in Estonian Sun 11:00. Organ music Sat 12:00. Admission €2. Tower admission €5. Y
Lower Town, the larger part of medieval Tallinn (or Reval as it was called back then), became a member of the Hanseatic League at the end of the 13th century. Goods from around the world came in through the port and were traded on the market on Town Hall Square. Reval operated autonomously from the rest of the Estonian territories right up until Tsarist Russian times. As in the rest of the country, the real movers and shakers in Reval society were the Baltic Germans, with Ethnic Estonians for most part second-class citizens. However, Estonian peasants from surrounding areas often escaped to the city, where they could eventually be considered free.
Toompea Castle Built on the spot where the ancient Estonians’ wooden fortress stood before the 1219 Danish invasion, Tallinn’s castle served for seven centuries as the seat of power for the nation’s foreign masters. Now it houses the Riigikogu, Estonia’s parliament. On one corner of the castle you can see Pikk Hermann tower with the blue, black and white tricolour flag waving above it. It’s commonly recognised that whoever’s flag flies on top of this tower is the ruler of Estonia. The pink section you see in front is actually a baroque structure added in the 18th Century. For a more castle-like view of this building, head behind it, down the opposite side of the hill.QA‑5, Lossi plats 1, tel. +372 631 63 45, www. riigikogu.ee/
Holy Spirit Church This awe-inspiring, 13th-century church adjacent Town Hall Square sports an impressive Baroque tower as well as an ornate, outdoor clock that’s said to be one of the most photographed objects in Tallinn. The real treasure however is the intricate, wood-carved interior, which includes Baroque pews and a Renaissance pulpit (the oldest in Tallinn). Founded by the Order of the Holy Spirit, the church was always close to the people - It was the most active in providing alms to the sick and poor, and it was here that the first sermons were given in Estonian after the Reformation.QC‑4, Pühavaimu 2, tel. +372 646 44 30, www.eelk. ee/tallinna.puhavaimu. Open 10:00-14:00; Sat 10:00-16:00. Services in English every Sun‑ day at 13:00, classical music hour Mon 18:00. Entrance fee €1.50. Y
October - November 2019
Sightseeing - Essential Old Town Niguliste Church - Museum Tallinn’s most famous work of art, a wall-sized fragment of Bernt Notke’s spooky, 15th-century masterpiece Dance Macabre, has its home in this 13th-century Gothic church-turned art museum. Destroyed during World War II and rebuilt during Soviet times, the church now houses a fascinating collection of medieval religious art, with altars from the 15th and 16th centuries, a collection of Baroque and Renaissance chandeliers, and a ‘silver chamber.’ The church is also known for its acoustics - organ concerts are held here every Saturday and Sunday at 16:00. Special exhibition on display from October 25 until April 26, 2020 ‘The Virgin Mary: Woman, Mother, Queen’, focuses medieval and early modern art works from houses of worship in Estonia and Livonia.QB‑5, Niguliste 3, tel. +372 631 43 30, www. nigulistemuuseum.ekm.ee. Open 10:00-17:00; closed Mon, Tue. Admission €6, reduced €5, family €12. Y St. Catherine’s Passage One of the prettiest little walkways in all of Old Town, the medieval St. Catherine’s passage connects Vene and Müürivahe streets. On the northern portion of the passage you can find what’s left of St. Catherine’s Church (hence the passage name) and various large, ancient tombstones that used to line the inside of the sanctuary. On the southern portion of the passage, you’ll find numerous artisan workshops, where you’ll even get to see them hard at work creating new items for you to buy. At any rate, we’re sure you’ll find Katarina Käik, a pretty nice hike.QC‑4, Katariina Käik. St. Olaf’s Church St. Olaf’s 124m spire is a Tallinn landmark, and was the tallest building in Europe between 1549 and 1625. An old legend claims that the church was built to attract more merchant ships to the town by a mysterious craftsman who promised to work for free if the townspeople discovered his name (Olev). In reality, 18 Tallinn In Your Pocket
the church took its name from the canonised Norwegian king, Olav Havaldsson. The first mention of the church dates to 1267, but the interior dates to 1840 and reflects that era’s Historicist bent. NB! Due to renovation works the church is open only during services. QC‑3, Lai 50, tel. +372 641 22 41, www.oleviste.ee. Services in Estonian Sun 10:00, 12:00, Thu 18:30 (prayer). Y Town Hall Pharmacy One of the oldest continuously running pharmacies in Europe is on Town Hall Square. No one knows exactly when it opened, but records show that the Raeapteek was already on its third owner in 1422. In medieval times patients could buy mummy juice and burnt bees for treatment, and healthy folks could even drop in for a glass of spiced wine. Keeping up with the times, the pharmacy sells the usual aspirin and condoms, but part of the shop is also a museum, displaying old medical instruments and other curiosities.QC‑4, Raekoja plats 11, tel. +372 58 87 57 01, www.raeapteek.ee. Open 10:00-18:00; closed Sun. Free admission. Town Hall Square & town hall As a medieval market and a modern meeting place, Town Hall Square, has been the heart of city life for eight centuries. With the Town Hall at your back, you can survey some of the most impressive examples of Gothic architecture in Tallinn. Hunt for a circular stone in the centre of the square marked with a compass rose. From here, if you stretch, you can see the tops Tallinn’s five most famous spires. The jewel in the crown of Old Town is unquestionably the Town Hall, the centre of civic rule from the Middle Ages to the early 20th century. Though a previous town hall stood here at least as far back as 1322, the imposing Gothic building of today dates to 1404. Old Thomas, the weather vane who symbolises Tallinn, has been keeping watch since 1530. This time of year you need to call ahead to arrange for a glimpse of the vaulted halls and carved friezes of the historic interior.QC‑5, Raekoja plats 1, tel. +372 645 79 00, www. raekoda.tallinn.ee. Admission €5, reduced €3, family €10. Y tallinn.inyourpocket.com
Sightseeing tallinn card If you’re trying pack the most into your time in Tallinn, consider picking up the city tourist office’s discount card, the Tallinn Card, good for 24hrs (€26), 48hrs (€39), or 72hrs (€47). There is also Tallinn Card Plus which gets you a free entry to the hop-on hop-off buses and costs 24hrs (€36), 48hrs (€49), 72hrs (€58). For kids 7 17, the price is reduced by about 50%. Cardholders will gain free admission to over 40 museums and sights in the city, unlimited use of public transport and all sorts of fun bonuses and freebies at restaurants, shops, etc. Look for the Y symbol in this guide for listed partners. The card can be bought online and used in your mobile phone or you can buy a plastic card from major hotels as well as the airport, harbour and at the Tallinn Tourist Information Centre (Kullassepa 4). For more details, consult the website at www.tallinncard.ee.
Sightseeing tours City Train This is a happy, blue little tourist train that makes a 25-minute circuit through the streets of Old Town all year long. Departures are from Vana-Viru street, near Viru gates (D-5). Great fun for both kids and kids-atheart. Ride costs €7 for adults and €5 for the kids.QC‑5, tel. +372 58 87 77 42. EstAdventures This innovative outfit organises regular free walking tours such as a great Communist Tallinn tour and an excellent Old Town tour. Tours start in Tallinn Tourist Information Center.Qtel. +372 58 02 75 84, www.estadventures.ee. Euroaudioguide This audio guide allows the user to take themselves on a tour at their leisure, using an iPod, a map and their own two feet. The narration provides loads of interesting facts and exciting tales from Tallinn’s past and it’s available at many major hotels throughout the city and the Tourist information centre. Available also via download to your own mobile device. See website for prices and details.Qtel. +372 59 02 31 97, www.euroaudioguide.com. Y Nordic Experience If you want to make the most of your limited time, and enjoy a personal private guided tour, check out ‘Nordic Experience’. Their friendly and entertaining guides can be booked on short notice and your tour can be tailored to suit your pace and interests. The following tour prices are for 2 people: 2hr ‘Tallinn Old Town Walking facebook.com/TallinnInYourPocket
Tour’ €96, 2hr ‘Tallinn Panoramic Drive’ with guide and driver €180, 4hr ‘Tallinn Old Town and Kadriorg-Pirita Tour’ €280, 4hr ‘Paldiski and Countryside Tour’ €310, 10hr ’Helsinki Day Trip’ €450. See website for additional tours and info.QD‑5, Viru 21, tel. +372 59 00 51 51, www. nordicexperience.com. Ronk Ronk Ghost and Folkore Tours Do you love ghost stories and folklore? Take a tour with Ronk Ronk to discover such things as ‘Oldest Ghost of Tallinn’ and ‘Hidden Stories of Down-town of Tallinn’. Minimum group size is 10 people for a private tour or look at their schedule for regular tours.Qtel. +372 53 90 21 77/+372 56 48 99 38, www.ronkronk.ee. Tallinn Legends This interactive experience takes you on a trip through Tallinn’s past in the form of theatrical and interactive exhibits. The journey involves nine rooms and nine different legends that have contributed to the folklore of this medieval city. We don’t want to spoil the fun so we won’t go in to detail but it’s a truly fun experience. Not recommended for younger guests, pregnant women or those suffering from epilepsy - you’ve been warned. Groups should also book in advance. See website for additional details and info.QC‑5, Kullassepa 7, tel. +372 510 74 53, www. tallinnlegends.com. Open 11:00-19:00; Sat, Sun 11:0020:00. Admission €16, reduced €12. Y October - November 2019
Sightseeing Churches Although Tallinn is small, the amount of historic churches around the city is quite impressive. The styles and variety in architecture also vary quite a bit, from the predominate Lutheran to Orthodox and Catholic amongst others. Tallinn’s most famous churches have already been listed in the Old Town section, but here are some others for readers with a special interest. Church of the Transfiguration of Our Lord Originally belonging to St. Michael’s Convent of the Cistercian Order (located next door and now housing the Gustavus Adolphus School), the church was given to an Orthodox congregation in 1716. The church has retained its original form, save the addition of a Baroque spire in 1776 and exterior renovations in the early 1800s. The carved-wood iconostasis is one of the most impressive of its kind.QB‑4, Suur-Kloostri 14, tel. +372 646 40 03, www.platon.ee. Services in Estonian Sun 10:00. Dominican Monastery Claustrum This 13th century monastery offers a glimpse into the lives of medieval monks. The east wing of the once three chambers remains where you can explore many rooms including a monk’s dormitory and prior’s living quarters. One of the most interesting spots may be the downstairs room that houses the ‘energy pillar’ purportedly the source of a mysterious power.QC‑4, Müürivahe 33, tel. +372 511 25 36, www.claustrum.eu. Open 10:00-17:30. Open from May through September, other times only for prearranged group bookings. Admission €3. Various programmes available, see website for details. St. Charles the XI’s Church Built in pseudo-Romanesque style on the site of a 17th-century wooden church, Kaarli is an excellent example of the use of one of Estonia’s greatest resources - limestone. In all, construction took 20 years (1862 - 1882), but painter Johann Köler completed Estonia’s largest mural here, Come to Me, in just ten days. The church is also home to Estonia’s largest church organ.QA‑7, Toompuiestee 4, tel. +372 611 91 00, www.eelk.ee/tallinna.kaarli. Open Mon 11:00-14:00; Tue, Wed 14:00-18:00; Thu, Fri 11:00-14:00; Sun 09:00-12:00; closed Sat. Services in Estonian Sun 10:00 and Mon 13:00. Classical music hour on Tue 17:00. St. John’s Church This bright yellow landmark is one of two churches begun in 1862, testifying to Tallinn’s population boom at that time. Built for a local congregation, St. John’s boasts the first bell inscribed in Estonian.QC‑6, Vabaduse väljak 1, 20 Tallinn In Your Pocket
fact #85 Did you know that the man who discovered Antarctica was Estonian? Fabian Gottlieb Thaddeus von Bellingshausen, born in Saaremaa, discovered the continent in 1820. A maritime expedition will take place from July 2019 to February 2020 to commemorate the Antarctic discovery by Admiral von Bellingshausen.
tel. +372 644 62 06, www.eelk.ee/tallinna.jaani. Ser‑ vices in Estonian Sun 10:00, service with music each Wed 13:30. St. Michael’s Swedish Lutheran Church Originally built as a hospital in the 16th century, St. Michael’s also housed a spinning factory where ‘fallen women’ worked. Then it was transformed into a church for local Swedes. After serving as a weightlifting room under the Soviets, the church was returned in 1993 to the Swedish congregation, whose efforts to fund-raise for renovation of the church have paid off. Book in advance for museum tour.QB‑5, Rüütli 9, tel. +372 644 19 38, www. stmikael.ee. Services in Swedish every Sunday 12:00 and in Finnish every Sunday 10:00. In German every 2nd and 4th Sunday 15:00. St. Nicholas’ Orthodox Church The present Classical building dates to the 1820s, but a Russian Orthodox church stood here in the early 1400s. The young church houses many objects of artistic value predating it, including 16th-century icons.QC‑4, Vene 24, tel. +372 644 19 45, www.stnicolas.ee. Open 10:0017:00; Sun 07:30-15:00; Sat 08:00-19:00. Services in Rus‑ sian Fri 18:00, Sat 09:00, 17:00, Sun 10:00. St. Peter and Paul’s Roman Catholic Church A relative newcomer as far as Tallinn’s houses of worship go, this pseudo-Gothic church was built in on the former refectory of the Dominican Monastery from 1841 - 1844. Drop by to look at the interior. If the door is locked, go to the office and knock.QC‑4, Vene 18, tel. +372 644 63 67, www.katoliku.ee. Services in Estonian Mon - Fri 08:00, Mon - Wed & Fri 18:00, Sun 11:30; in Russian Sun 18:00; in Latin Sat 08:00; in Polish Thu 18:00, Sun 10:00; in En‑ glish Sat 18:00. tallinn.inyourpocket.com
Sightseeing Art museums Located throughout the city, you’ll find some intriguing art museums to explore, some of which are located in Kadriorg. If you’re interested in learning more about Estonian art, KUMU, the Art Museum of Estonia is a good place to start, with the largest permanent collection. Adamson-Eric Museum The permanent collection of works by the world-renowned artist Adamson-Eric (1902 - 1968) is housed in a 16th-century in Old Town. Affiliated with The Art Museum of Estonia. Until December 1: The Visit: Eero Järnefelt and Venny Soldan-Brofeldt.QB‑5, Lühike jalg 3, tel. +372 644 58 35, www.adamson-eric.ekm.ee. Open 11:00-18:00; closed Mon, Tue. Admission €5, reduced €4, family €10. Joint tickets to all branches of the Art Museum of Esto‑ nia available. Y Contemporary Art Museum of Estonia In a former office building on a deck of an old heating plant is where you’ll find the Contemporary Art Museum of Estonia. The museum aims to find middle ground between official art museums and alternative galleries. Exhibitions are constantly changing, so be sure to check the website for what’s on display. In addition to the exhibitions, there is also a café on the main floor that often hosts different events. September 7 - October 20: When You Say We Belong To The Light We Belong To The Thunder. November 2 - December 15: Tunnel. QD‑2, Põhja pst. 35, tel. +372 53 30 54 49, www.ekkm.ee. Open 12:00-19:00; closed Mon. Free admission. Estonian Museum of Applied Art and Design Works of Estonian applied art and intriguing temporary exhibitions are set off by irregular white walls. September 20 - October 20: Kuud. Contemporary lighting design. September 28 - January 5, 2020: “The Weather Diaries“. Curators Cooper&Gorfer. October 25 - January 5, 2020: “ROOM“. Krista Leesi.QC‑4, Lai 17, tel. +372 627 46 00/ (+372) 627 46 11, www.etdm.ee. Open 11:00-18:00; closed Mon, Tue. Admission €6, reduced €3, family €10. Y Museum of Photography Back in the 14th century this building behind the Town Hall served as the town prison (as a visit to the cellar will show). Now it houses an extensive exhibition on Estonian photography, mainly devoted to the 1840 - 1940 period. Drop in to peruse the old Tallinn photos, recreated studio and antique cameras on display. September 19 - November 11: Georgs Avetisjans. Homeland. Until October 2020: STODOM. A Combination of Letters that Changed Estonian Photography.QC‑5, Raekoja 4/6, tel. +372 644 87 67, www.linnamuuseum.ee/ fotomuuseum. Open 10:00-17:00; Thu 12:00-20:00; Sun 10:00-16:00; closed Tue. Admission €4, reduced €2, family €8. Y facebook.com/TallinnInYourPocket
skywheel of tallinn See Tallinn from a new angle from the SkyWheel! At 120 metres above sea level, you’ll have magnificent views of the city, the sea, Ülemiste Lake and the airport. Each weather-proof pod holds up to six people and comes with a complimentary bottle of sparkling wine. The pods are heated in winter and air-conditioned in summer. NB! Children under 12 must be accompanied by an adult. QM‑8, Peterburi tee 2 (T1 Mall of Tallinn), tel. +372 656 51 15, www. superskypark.ee/en. Open 10:00-22:00; Mon 12:0022:00. Admission €10, family €28. Y
Russian Museum This small museum on Pikk street is dedicated to Russian culture in Estonia. They usually feature a different Russian-Estonian artist every few months or a Russian artist who spent part of their life in Estonia. During the Tsarist era many famous Russian painters, artists and writers spent time in Estonia from Pushkin to Dostoyevsky - the list is large. This small museum is not exactly ‘English’ friendly but if you are fascinated by Russian culture and how it’s influenced Estonia, the €20 English-language guided tour might be worth it. Until January 30, 2020: SCHOOL CLASS & BREAK TIME: Russian-Language Education in Tallinn 1715 - 1944. QC‑4, Pikk 29a, tel. +372 660 41 40, www.linnamuuseum.ee/ vemu. Open Wed 10:00-20:00; Thu, Fri 10:00-18:00; Sat 10:00-17:00; Sun 11:00-16:00; closed Mon, Tue. Admis‑ sion €4, reduced €3, family €8. Y
fact #86 Tartu, Estonia’s intellectual capital, was first mentioned in 1030 in old Russian Chronicles. It’s had many names since then - Tarbatu, Dorpat, Dorpt, Dörpt, Derpt, and Jurjev. There is no other city in Estonia that has been burned and plundered as many times as Tartu throughout history. October - November 2019
History museums Estonia’s fascinating history can be discovered in one of its many history museums. Starting in the Old Town, you can learn about 11,000 years of Estonia’s history at the Great Guild Hall, or the country’s haunting Soviet past at the KGB Prison Cells. Towards Pirita area you can find the Maarjamäe History Centre and futher on to Viimsi area the Estonian War Museum. Estonian History Museum - Great Guild Hall Housed in the Great Guild Hall, this newly renovated museum’s permanent exhibition, entitled ‘Spirit of Survival’, covers 11,000 years of Estonia’s history with interactive displays and text in Estonian and English (audio-guides available in Russian and English). The building, built 1407 1410, is significant as the home of Tallinn’s union of wealthy merchants and is a sight worth visiting in its own right. As part of the renovations, several formal rooms and cellars have now been opened to the public for the first time. Next to the museum, follow the Börsi Passage where Estonia’s history is set in the stone path (when it’s not covered in snow), from the pre-history, through the present-day. The exhibition ‘I love you, Georg Ots’ is on display from October 18 until May 31, 2020. The famous singer and actor Georg Ots (1920-1975) was adored for his talent and charm. He was highly regarded in Estonia, as well as in Russia and Finland. The exhibition looks at the actor’s life and work through the eyes of his admirers and aims to unravel the meaning of Georg Ots for his contemporaries and his place in Estonian culture. QC‑4, Pikk 17, tel. +372 696 86 90, www.ajaloomuuseum.ee. Open 10:00-18:00; closed Mon. Admission €8, reduced €6, family €16. Y
Estonian History Museum - Great Guild Hall
22 Tallinn In Your Pocket
Estonian History Museum - Maarjamäe History Centre Maarjamäe Palace is the most well-preserved, summer manor complex in Tallinn today. Built in 1874 and commissioned by Count Anatoly Orlov-Davydov from St. Petersburg, it has played many different roles during its long history. This palace has housed a posh restaurant and hotel, an Aviation School of the Republic of Estonia as well as the Soviet army, before being given new life as a museum in 1987. The permanent exhibition ‘My Free Country’ takes visitors on a 100-year journey, from the birth of the Republic of Estonia to modern day. Part of the Estonian History Museum, the Estonian Film Museum houses a permanent exhibition entitled ‘Take ONE’. The exhibition looks at the filmmaking process and lets you in on the secrets of filmmaking and filmmakers. Over the last decade, the museum has been collecting monuments from the Soviet period with the intention of making an outdoor exhibition that presents a specific period of local history. This exhibition is displayed behind Maarjamäe Palace and forms one part of the museum’s new park. The historic Maarjamäe Stables building is a venue for exhibitions, currently displaying ‘Sound of Freedom. The Story of Estonian Popular Music’.QN‑6, Pirita tee 56, tel. +372 696 86 00, www. ajaloomuuseum.ee. Open 10:00-18:00; closed Mon. Maarjamäe Palace or Film Museum admission €8, re‑ duced €6, family €16. Maarjamäe Stables admission €6, reduced €4, family €12. Entire centre admission €15, reduced €8, family €25. Y
Estonian History Museum - Maarjamäe History Centre
Estonian War Museum - General Laidoner Museum Housed in Viimsi Manor, the former summer residence of General Johan Laidoner, the Estonian War Museum is a great place to start if you’d like to learn more about this country’s history. Over hundreds of years, Estonia has had troops fighting on its soil from Denmark, Sweden, Germany, Poland, Russia and has even hosted a fair share of Viking battles. Inside you’ll find displays and info on the various wars Estonia has been involved in. There are several permanent exhibitions available for visit. The exhibition of WW I speaks about the destiny of Estonians who either conscripted or drafted voluntarily to the Russian army. The period of WW II is told through the story of three men depicting the situation in Estonia under the occupations. The exhibition ‘Cold War’ reflects Estonian Forest Brothers’ tallinn.inyourpocket.com
Sightseeing movement during and after the WW II, military service of Estonian men in the Western countries and in the Soviet Army, the locations of Soviet troops and nuclear weapons in the territory of Estonia until 1994. A display of artillery guns and military vehicles is located 300 m from the museum. The machine pool of the heavy artillery display mainly dates back to the period from 1930 to 1960, and the majority of the items formed part of the armament of various countries in World War II and during the Cold War. Getting there: Take bus N°1A to Viimsi from the Viru Centre’s underground bus terminal (C-4) and get off at Viimsi vallamaja stop (should be about a 25min ride). Walk back to the main road and turn right, another 50m and it will be the large yellow building on your left.QO‑1, Mõisa tee 1, Viimsi, tel. +372 621 74 10, www.esm.ee. Open 11:00-18:00; closed Mon, Tue. Admission €3, reduced €2, family €5. Y
Kiek in de Kök Fortifications Kiek in de Kök, Bastion Passages, the Carved Stone Museum, Maiden’s Tower, Marstal Tower and the Short Leg Gate Tower make up a massive museum complex over 300 metres long. Kiek in de Kök tower is an excellent introduction to the history of Tallinn’s defences. Built 1475 - 1481, the 45-metre, six-storey cannon tower played a key role in the Livonian War and still has nine of Ivan IV’s cannonballs embedded in its walls. And where did the tower get its name? Medieval soldiers joked that from its top, they could see right into the kitchens of the houses below - hence the odd name. Legends, secrets and underground tunnels, the Bastion Passages aren’t just for rats any more. Built in the 17th-century by the Swedes to help protect the city, these passages are a fascinating relic of times past. The Carved Stone Museum, housed in the same passages, displays decorative and interesting carved stone fragments, including columns and family crests dating back to the 15th century. Originally erected in 1370-73, the Maiden’s Tower has undergone extensive renovations and it’s been reconnected to the adjacent defence tower, the Marstal Tower. Maiden’s Tower features historical exhibits reflecting these fortifications and the stories that go along with them.QB‑6, Komandandi 2, tel. +372 644 66 86, www.linnamuuseum.ee/kok. Open 10:00-17:00; Thu 10:00-20:00; closed Mon. Admission €14, reduced €8, family €28. Only towers or only pas‑ sages tickets also available. Y
Estonian War Museum
tallinn’s founding legend
KGB Prison Cells The unsuspecting facade of Pagari 1 in the Old Town hides a dark past that once was the KGB Prison Cells in Tallinn. The former KGB headquarters building has long been a symbol of the former Soviet oppression in Estonia. In the basement, suspected enemies of the state were imprisoned in tiny cells, sometimes up to 18 people at a time, before they were interrogated, then either shot or sent to labour camps in Siberia. Visit a part of the dark cellar, KGB Prison Cells is now open for visitors.QC‑3, Pagari 1 (en‑ trance on Pikk 59), tel. +372 668 02 50, www.vabamu. ee/kgb. Open 11:00-18:00; closed Mon. Admission €5, reduced €4, family €11. Joint ticket with Vabamu Mu‑ seum of Occupations and Freedom available. Y
Stick around Tallinn long enough and you’re bound to hear the name Kalev bandied about. There are countless Kalev sports teams and there’s even a Kalev brand of chocolate. But just who was this Kalev person?
KGB Prison Cells
Kalev is in fact a mythical giant from Tallinn’s distant past who is credited with founding the city. As the story goes, Kalev was sailing the seas looking for a spot to land and establish a kingdom. Eventually a prophecy led him to what is now Estonia’s capital. Upon Kalev’s death, his wife Linda was so stricken with grief that she over-did his burial mound, piling enough stones on his grave to form Toompea hill, which to this day looms over Old Town. When the contentious Aleksander Nevsky Cathedral was built on the hill at the beginning of the 20th century, a rumour was spread that Kalev’s ghost would haunt anyone who interfered with the construction. Nobody did. Arguably an even more important figure in the Estonian tradition is Kalev’s son, Kalevipoeg. Tales of Kalevipoeg’s adventures were set down in the form of an epic poem of the same name by Friedrich Reinhold Kreutzwald and published in 1857. At the time Estonia was undergoing a literary and cultural awakening, and Kalevipoeg became both a focal point for national identity and a major step in founding an Estonian literary tradition. October - November 2019
Sightseeing Tallinn City Museum By far, the most modern and complete introduction to Tallinn, City Museum was established in 1937 and celebrates its 80th anniversary this year. Appropriately built into a 14th-century merchant house, the Tallinn City Museum houses elaborate displays, with English captions, demonstrating various aspects of Tallinn life through the ages. They also house a depository of porcelain and faience (fine tin-glazed pottery on a delicate pale buff earthenware structure). Until January 12, 2020: Collection & Story: Langebraun porcelain. Until May, 2021: From stronghold to town - the birth of a Danish town 800 years ago.QC‑4, Vene 17, tel. +372 615 51 80, www.linnamuuseum.ee/ linnamuuseum. Open 10:00-17:00; Sun 10:00-16:00; Tue 10:00-20:00; closed Mon. Admission €6, reduced €4, family €12. Y Vabamu Museum of Occupations and Freedom In the period from 1940 to 1991, Estonia was occupied briefly by Nazi Germany and then for four and a half decades by the USSR. The history of this difficult period comes to life in this modern museum on the edge of Old Town. After extensive renovations, this now, state-ofthe-art museum has reopened with a new permanent exhibition ‘Freedom Without Borders’, which looks at occupations, resistance, restoration, and freedom from five different perspectives: crimes against humanity, Estonians in the free world, life in Soviet Estonia, the restoration of independence, and finally - freedom. The exhibition can be self-explored or guided by an entertaining, e-tour guide, available in seven languages (Estonian, Russian, English, Finnish, German, French, Spanish). The fascinating exhibits are punctuated by personal possessions from those that escaped, lived through or were exiled to Siberia during the occupation – bringing a very human element to the situations they faced and how they coped with them. Their stories are also told here, often in their own words, which truly bring their experiences to life. Vabamu also has a special exhibition tailored for children, where different stories are told for different age groups.QA‑6, Toompea 8, tel. +372 668 02 50, www.vabamu.ee. Open 11:00-18:00; closed Mon. Admission €11, reduced €7, family €23. Joint ticket with KGB Prison Cells available. Y
24 Tallinn In Your Pocket
Museums When you’ve finished learning about Estonia’s history, there are many speciality museums to explore, many of which are located in the Old Town. Explore every topic, from food and health, to marzipan and music. You are sure to find something interesting for both kids and adults alike. Estonian Health Museum This fascinating museum is filled with historic health related artefacts, interactive displays and hands-on exhibits. The top floor of the museum certainly contains some of the most interesting displays such as those concerning sexual health and reproduction, addictive substances and a special section highlighting various parasites and bacteria that live inside us or feed from us. Some of the exhibits are certainly a little creepy, but overall it’s quite an educational and thought-provoking experience. Be sure to check out the virtual hairstyle machine where you can send a photo to yourself via e-mail. Other highlights include the ‘dental’ room and collection of gallstones. New temporary exhibition ‘I, super organism’ is on display from Sep‑ tember 18 until August 30, 2020.QC‑4, Lai 30, tel. +372 641 18 86/(+372) 641 20 49, www.tervishoiumuuseum.ee. Open 10:00-18:00; Wed 10:00-19:00; closed Mon. Admission €8, reduced €5, family €18. Y Estonian Museum of Natural History All your favourite taxidermic Estonian, and a few foreign, animals (not to mention dried plants and molluscs) are on display in this renovated three-storey museum designed to introduce nature to entire family. The permanent exhibition ‘Estonian Mires’ gives a brief overview of the origin and life of the mires, and looks different types of bogs and their importance. Don’t miss the chance to embark on a virtual reality adventure and use their AR app to see nature like never before. English language audio guides are available and a small museum shop selling natural Estonian souvenirs is open on the first floor. Until December 31 a temporary exhibition ‘Fathers and Sons’ is on display.QC‑3, Lai 29a, tel. +372 641 17 39, www. loodusmuuseum.ee. Open 10:00-17:00; Thu 10:0019:00; closed Mon. Admission €6, reduced €3, family €12. A joint family ticket for Tallinn Zoo, Estonian Mu‑ seum of Natural History and Tallinn Botanic Garden is €35 and it may be used on separate days. Y
Estonian Museum of Natural History
Sightseeing Estonian Theatre and Music Museum After extensive renovations, the Estonian Theatre and Music Museum is open with a permanent exhibition ‘Stories and Songs’. Stories and songs play an important role in every culture; they unite people and preserve our history. The museum tells the story of Estonian history using classic Estonian literature and songs, while at the same time looking at music and theatre in the context of late 19th century education, village life, Estonian independence in 1918, Baltic German power, the church, the Soviet period, and childhood. ‘Stories and Songs’ received the Annual Award of Estonian Museums for Best Permanent Exhibition of 2017. There is also plenty of things to entertain the little ones, like instruments to play and costumes to try on. On the top floor, there is also an attic where children can play until their parents delve into extensive information on the screens. Until November 13 a temporary exhibition ‘Story of My Song Celebration’ is on display to celebrate 150 years of Estonian Song Celebration tradition.QC‑6, Müürivahe 12, tel. +372 644 21 32, www.tmm.ee. Open 10:00-18:00; closed Mon. Admission €6, reduced €3, family €12. English language tour available for €30. Y
Estonian Theatre and Music Museum
Hotel Viru and the KGB Museum For years, stories have been circulating about how one side of the first foreign owned and operated hotel in Tallinn during Soviet times was completely wired up so that the KGB could listen in on foreign and local guests’ conversations. When the iron curtain finally fell, those staffing the room destroyed or took with them what they could and high-tailed it back to ‘Mother Russia’. Now the room is open to the public and exists exactly the way they left it, including an ashtray and Soviet-era cigarette butts. Sokos also fixed up another adjacent room which serves as a kind of time-capsule to Soviet hotel history. The museum, albeit small, is certainly worth a visit for both tourists and locals alike. Tours run every day and cost €11. Tours must be booked in advance.QE‑5, Viru väljak 4 (Original Sokos Hotel Viru), tel. +372 680 93 00, www.viru.ee/en/ kgb_muuseum.
find out all about the history of marzipan, first used as a medicine in the Middle Ages, as well as other interesting facts about this almond based sweet. You can take a look at the intricate, hand-painted marzipan creations, including some hundred-year-old moulds and if the timing is right, even take in some interesting stories from Otto Kubo who has worked at Kalev for 60 years.QC‑4, Pikk 16, tel. +372 646 41 92, www. kohvikmaiasmokk.ee/martsipanituba. Open 10:0021:00. Free admission. Y
seaplane harbour Estonian Maritime Museum - Seaplane Harbour The highly interactive Seaplane Harbour, literally, has ‘tonnes’ of reasons why it’s the most popular museum in Estonia. This modern museum is housed in architecturally unique seaplane hangar, which includes structures that were part of the Peter the Great Naval Fortress between 1916-1917. The authentic submarine Lembit from the 1930-s, the century-old steam-powered icebreaker Suur Tõll, a Short 184 seaplane and many other life-sized exhibits are on display here. You’ll get a chance to take part in maritime history, as well as interact with many hands-on exhibits. Until January 19, 2020 a temporary exhibition by Dutch multimedia artist Saskia Boddeke, called ‘Sex & the Sea’, is on display. The exhibition is about sailors’ desire and yearning and, it also includes original Estonian historical material. Second temporary exhibition ‘Great Escape to the West’ is on display from August 22 until June 30, 2020. It is an audio-visual exhibition about twists of fate and escaping across the sea, connecting intriguing stories of people who set sail from different parts of Estonia in a dash for freedom.QJ‑6, Vesilen‑ nuki 6, tel. +372 620 05 50/(+372) 620 05 45, www. seaplaneharbour.com. Open 10:00-18:00; closed Mon. Ticket €15, reduced €8, family €30. Children up to 8 years free of charge. Audio guide in 9 lan‑ guages available. Y
Kalev Marzipan Room Estonia’s famous candy factory operates a tiny museum and shop in the Old Town building where the company started back in the 19th century. Here you can facebook.com/TallinnInYourPocket
October - November 2019
Sightseeing Museum of Estonian Architecture Tallinn’s architecture museum is located in the port area and housed in the restored Rotermann Salt Storage building, itself an architectural curiosity. The permanent exhibit on the main floor features architectural models from the museum’s collection. ‘SPACE IN MOTION: A Century of Estonian Architecture’ exhibition, acquaints visitors with the development of professional Estonian spatial and architectural culture. It encompasses the most important segments of 20th century Estonian architectural history, as well as the more intriguing aspects of contemporary design. A second permanent exhibition ‘Explore Space!’ is geared toward children and young people. The exhibition teaches you how to experience space and grasp the essence of architecture. Located in the basement level of the museum, the exhibition offers different experiences for the senses, inviting everyone to smell and touch architecture and experience it with their whole body. September 12 - November 17: TAB 2019 Curatorial Exhibition ‘Beauty Matters’. September 14 - November 17: Building Parts.QE‑3, Ahtri 2, tel. +372 625 70 00, www.arhitektuurimuuseum.ee. Open 11:00-18:00; closed Mon. Admission €6, reduced €3, family €12. Y
Museum of Estonian Architecture
Museum of Icons Whether you’re an expert or novice in the world of icons, this museum will certainly fascinate. The exhibition includes over 300 Russian icons dating back as early as the 15th century. Spread out over four floors, visitors can see the progression in style and technique. There is also a wide selection of Old Believer texts, manuscripts, and religious engravings. English guided tours available.QC‑5, Vene 6 (Masters Courtyard), tel. +372 641 00 57, www. ikoonimuuseum.ee. Open by appointment only. Ad‑ mission €12.
impressive collection of state orders of Estonia.QC‑5, Kun‑ inga 3, tel. +372 53 33 93 80, www.tallinnmuseum.com. Open 10:00-18:00; closed Mon. Admission €9, reduced €5, family €20. Y
Outdoor attractions While the summer might be the best time to be outdoors, that certainly doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy the outside in winter. Tallinn’s biggest outdoor attractions - the Estonian Open Air Museum and the Tallinn Zoo - are both located in Rocca al Mare area. Getting there: Rocca al Mare is a mere 20-minute ride from the centre by public transport or a 10-minute taxi ride. If you choose public transport to reach the Open Air Museum, take either bus N°21 or 21b from Viru stop (D5) to the Rocca al Mare stop. The Zoo and the shopping centre can also be reached by buses N°21 or 21b from Viru stop or 42 from Vabaduse Square to the Zoo stop. Alternately, bus N°43 from Balti jaam train station will also take you to the same stop. Ride three more stops (to Karikakra) to reach the western gate of the zoo and some of the eateries in the neighbourhood (some walking required). Estonian Open Air Museum Put on your hiking boots! This outdoor museum includes a whopping 70 buildings, mostly farm-related, sprawled out across 70ha of forest and land in Rocca al Mare, on the shore of the Kopli Gulf. There are even a couple of windmills, some sheep, pigs, chickens, and you can also take a ride on the horse-drawn waggon or sleigh - depending on the weather. Informative signs in Estonian, Russian, English and German guide you through 150 years of farming history. Sample the pea soup and other traditional and hearty foods at the Kolu Inn (Kolu Kőrts). October 5: Onion and Fish Day; November 10: St. Martin’s Day; November 24: St. Catherine’s Day. Take bus N°21 or 21b from the Viru stop to the Rocca al Mare stop.QF‑7, Vabaőhumuuseumi tee 12, tel. +372 654 91 00/+372 654 91 01, www.evm.ee. Open 10:00-17:00. Admission €8, reduced €6, family €16. A joint family ticket for the Tallinn Zoo and Open Air Museum is €17 and it may be used on separate days. Y
Tallinn Museum of Orders of Knighthood For those that like history, mythology or even jewellery, make time for a stop in this museum for a unique collection of insignia from all over the world. You’ll see items like decorations of the Orders of the Garter, the Golden Fleece, Malta, Black Eagle and the Legion of Honour, as well as an 26 Tallinn In Your Pocket
Sightseeing vana toomas
l marks the spot
One of Tallinn’s most recognised and legendary figures, the weathervane Vana Toomas (Old Thomas), can be seen guarding over Old Town from the top of the Town hall tower, rain or shine. Toomas wasn’t always as old as his current name suggests - you see, as a wee peasant lad he won an annual archery contest that was only reserved for the nobility. He expected to get into a fair amount of trouble for winning, as it had never been done by someone of his lowly stature, but his win would not be in ‘vain’ as he was invited to become an apprentice guard. The next few years would see much adventure for our young hero as he performed numerous heroic deeds during the Livonian war and went on to serve Tallinn well past the usual retirement age. At some point later the townsfolk noticed a similarity between the weathervane and their favorite soldier and decided to honor him by giving his name to the vane. He has since become a symbol of the city.QC-2.
Look for two long cobblestones that make the letter ‘L’ in the corner of Town Hall Square nearest the Raeapteek. This spot marks one of the more bizarre tales from Tallinn’s medieval history. In the late 1600s, so the story goes, a priest named Panicke walked into an inn and ordered an omelette. What he got was ‘hard as the sole of a shoe,’ so he sent it back. The next two that the waitress brought were even worse, and after an argument, the priest decided to make his point by killing the waitress with an axe. For this unusually violent crime, the priest was swiftly hauled out to the square and beheaded, and the spot was marked for the convenience of future tourguides.
Tallinn Zoo Tallinn Zoo boasts one of the most impressive collections of exotic species in Northern Europe. In addition to extensive outside exhibits including birds of prey, lynxes and grey seals, you can check out the Pachyderm house, which also features loads of snakes and a couple of pigmy hippos, or duck into the steamy, crocodile and chimp-filled Tropical House. The Amur leopards are also must-sees as they are critically endangered - Tallinn Zoo is a very important and successful part of their international breeding program. The Zoo now features a Polarium that provides a new and spacious home for two polar bears. Environmental Education Centre and Children’s Zoo can be found near the west gate at Ehitajate tee 150. By public transport it is easiest to enter through the north gate at Paldiski tee 145, just take bus N°21, 21b, 22, 41, 41b or 42 from city centre to the Zoo stop.QG‑9, Paldiski mnt. 145, tel. +372 694 33 00, www.tallinnzoo.ee. Ticket office is open 09:00 17:00, from November 09:00 - 15:00. Indoor expositions (Tropical house, Pachyderm house) 10:00 - 18:00, from November 10:00 - 16:00, closed Mon. Children´s Zoo is open daily 10:00 - 17:00. You are allowed to wander the zoo 2 hours after the ticket office closes. Admission €5, reduced €3, family €13. A joint family ticket for the Tallinn Zoo and Open Air Museum is €17, and it may be used on separate days. A joint family ticket for Tallinn Zoo, Estonian Museum of Natural History and Tallinn Botanic Garden is €35 and it may be used on separate days. Y facebook.com/TallinnInYourPocket
sightseeing for families Increasingly, Tallinn has become a destination for families and while there are plenty of things to do and see that will intrigue both young and old alike - for the tourist it can be a bit of a chore to figure out just where best to take the kids and what activities will keep them occupied. Here you can find a list of extra child-friendly museums and activities. Children’s Museum Miiamilla This hands-on museum just for kids is located in the beautiful Kadriorg Park and is especially geared towards children between the ages of 3 and 11. The playful and often practical exhibits are constantly changing, with active themes so that the little ones are sure to be stimulated to the point of exhaustion - which we’re sure all parents are sure to appreciate.QM‑7, Koidula 21A, tel. +372 601 70 57, www.linnamuuseum.ee/miiamilla. Open 12:00-18:00; Sat, Sun 10.00-17:00; closed Mon. Admission €4, reduced €2, family €8. Y NUKU Puppetry Museum The NUKU Theatre and Museum is back and better than ever with 1400 square metres added to the original 65-year-old theatre. Performances can now be enjoyed in the new Ferdinand Hall. The main exhibition introduces everything there is to know about puppetry, different kinds of puppets, how do they move, and of course try out the puppets too. Visitors can also try on costumes and wigs. Learn about different position and jobs in the theatre, as well as the history of NUKU Theatre.QB‑4, Nunne 8, tel. +372 667 95 42, www.nuku. ee. Open 10:00-18:00; closed Mon. Admission €7, re‑ duced €5, family €18. Booking of events, workshops and guided tours for groups should be done seven days in advance. Y October - November 2019
Sightseeing town fortifications With 66 towers, medieval Tallinn was known as ‘one of the most fortified burgs in all Northern Europe’. Today 1.85km of the original city wall and 26 towers survive and several of them are open to the public.
Epping Tower The tower features an interactive exhibition that walks the visitor through the history and development of medieval defence systems. On display are items pertaining to the towers’ history, including suits of armour and complete maps of how the town looked during the 15th-century. Make sure you climb all the way to the top, the view of Old Town is pretty cool.QC‑3, Laboratooriumi 31, tel. +372 601 30 01, www.epping.ee. From September through April open only on Saturdays and Sundays 11:00 - 16:00. Admission €6, reduced €4. Y Fat Margaret’s Tower Originally constructed in the 14th century and arguably one of the top sights in the city, Paks Margareta as she is known to locals, is 82m in diameter and boasts 5m thick walls. At one point, Tallinn’s harbour was just outside the Great Coastal Gate and she certainly provided a formidable defence against any hostile forces trying enter the city here. The tower currently houses the Estonian Maritime Museum, see museum entry for details. NB! Museum is closed for renovations until December 2019.QC‑3, Pikk 70. Y
steven the seagull Estonia’s most photographed seagull lives in the Old Town on the Kohtuotsa viewing platform, where he has posed for hundreds of tourist photos. The seagull is so famous that in 2016 he got his own Instagram account. It may have started as an April Fool’s prank from the city’s tourist board, but this European Herring Gull became an instant star. If you want a photo with Steven, you’ll most likely find him at the Kohtuotsa or Patkuli viewing platforms. And while he may appear hungry, please don’t share your food with him. Follow Steven Seagull @vanalinnakajakasQB‑4.
tion of the original town wall to Munkadetagune Tower, where you’ll get a pigeons-eye view of Old Town.QD‑5, Müürivahe 48, www.tower.ee. Open 10:00-17:00; closed Tue. Admission €4. Y Nunne, Sauna and Kuldjala Towers Three of the oldest towers are open to the public, entrance at this spot. Tour hours may vary. Call ahead to make sure they are open.QB‑4, Väike-Kloostri 1, tel. +372 644 98 67, www.kodulinnamaja.ee. Open 11:00-17:00; closed Thu. Admission €2. Y Viru Gates The main entrance into Old Town is marked by these beautiful twin gate towers, which are only a fraction of a previous gate structure. The gate entrance was composed of a large tower, walls and the existing two towers. Unfortunately the larger inner gate towers were destroyed, but if you close your eyes we’re sure that you can picture what they would have looked like.QD‑5.
Hellemann Tower The three-storey tower, which stands adjacent Müürivahe street next to knit market, dates back to the 14th century and at different times was used as a prison and a weapons store. For small entrance fee you can have a look at the inside of the tower and have a chance to walk along a sec28 Tallinn In Your Pocket
Sightseeing Statues and monuments Maarjamäe War Memorial The pointed obelisk alongside the highway to Pirita Beach is part of the Maarjamäe War Memorial complex, a cement-filled park similar in its imposing style to other large complexes created in the USSR in the 1960s and 70s. The 35-metre obelisk was designed by Mart Port and executed by sculptor Lembit Toll. The memorial is made up of many parts: the spire, in memory of Russians who died in 1918, the concrete and iron figures honouring Soviet soldiers killed trying to fend off the Nazis in 1941, the graves of the crews of the Avtroil and Spartak minesweepers, grassy slopes and pathways, and a bronze sculpture of a flock of birds entitled “Perishing Seagulls”, a symbol of the two political powers of the time. Next to memorial is also the Maarjamäe German military cemetery.QN‑5, Pirita tee 78. Memorial to the Victims of Communism This striking memorial is dedicated to all Estonian people who suffered under the terror inflicted by the Soviet Union. There are two parts to the memorial ‘Journey’ and ‘Home Garden’. ‘Journey’ consists of name plaques of all the victims. Apple trees and honey bees are the symbols of the ‘Home Garden’, marking a place for the victims yet to be identified. The sites of terror are also marked with informative texts. Estonia was occupied by the Soviet Union from June 17, 1940 to August 20, 1991. More than 75,000 Estonians were murdered, imprisoned or deported over this period. Estonia lost one of every five persons from its population of slightly over one million. QN‑5, Pirita tee 78, www.memoriaal.ee/en. ‘The Broken Line’ Monument ‘The Broken Line’ monument in memory of those who lost their lives on the ‘Estonia’ ferry, which sank on 28 September 1994 on its voyage between Tallinn and Stockholm. 852 died, 757 of whom were never found. There were 137 survivors. The monument is located on the Suur Rannavärav bastion.QD‑3, Väike-Rannavärav. facebook.com/TallinnInYourPocket
The monument to the War of Independence After many delays and not without a certain amount of controversy, the freedom monument was officially unveiled to much fanfare at midnight on June 22, 2009. The 26m structure built from imported Czech glass was modelled after the ‘Cross of Liberty’, an honour bestowed upon individuals who helped Estonia gain her independence back in 1920. Winston Churchill was even a holder of the ‘Cross of Liberty’. It’s quite a spectacular monument, but to see it in all it’s glory you should check it out at night when it’s all lit up.QB-6, Vabaduse väljak.
cat’s well Before you complain about the chalky taste of Tallinn’s tap water, you might want to stop to consider what the town’s Medieval residents had to put up with. This wheel well on the corner of Rataskaevu and Dunkri in the Old Town was once one of the main sources of water for the Tallinn. According to legend, some of the locals got it into their heads that an evil water spirit lived in the well and threatened to make all the town’s wells run dry if it wasn’t given regular animal sacrifices. To keep the spirit happy, some cattle and sheep carcasses were thrown down the well, but the main victims were stray cats, who were rounded up and tossed, sometimes live, down the shaft. This practice was so common that the locals started calling this watering hole ‘Cat’s Well.’ In a sense, the sacrifices worked - the town’s wells never ran dry. But the practice of throwing animals down the well didn’t do much for the water quality, and the Cat’s Well had fallen into disuse by the mid 19th century. Rest assured that nowadays Tallinn’s water is much safer to drink, and the cats of Old Town no longer live in fear. QB‑5. October - November 2019
Sightseeing - Kadriorg & Pirita
Kadriorg Palace and Art Museum. Photo: Kaupo Kalda, EAS
Kadriorg area Just a short westerly hike along Narva mnt. brings you to one of the most beautiful districts in all of Tallinn. Kadriorg is home to magnificent parks and gardens, the Presidential Palace and several art museums. Trams N°1 and 3 will also get you there. Once you’ve arrived, nearly everything you want to see is located conveniently on, or just next to, the same short stretch of Weizenbergi. The park also has its own info kiosk located at Weizenbergi 33 across from the Swan Pond. Please turn to page 62 for a list of eateries in the area. Kadriorg Park A visit to Kadriorg Park is a must on any trip to Tallinn, no matter the time of year. The park was established in 1718 as part of the Kadriorg Palace estate, but has always been open to the public, attracting anyone to enjoy a casual stroll and ponder life. The most visited spot in the park is the beautifully renovated Swan Pond, an artificial, rectangular pond with a picturesque gazebo in the middle, which looks like something out of a Chekhov play. Uphill from here you’ll find another fountain area and then the Kumu art museum. Many of the palace’s auxiliary buildings are also nearby. The kitchen building, opposite the palace gates, houses the Mikkel Museum. The Youth Park, a children’s playground, was first built in 1936-37 by the State Parks Agency and headed by Peeter Päts, brother of the Head of State Konstantin Päts. Innovative for its time, it was a place where children could swim and play and learn. Though many of the original outbuildings and pools have been demolished over the years, the main building was renovated in 2009 and now houses the interactive children’s museum Miiamilla. In 2011, a Japanese garden designed by Japan’s renowned landscape designer Masao Sone was added to the northeast corner of the park. The plants were carefully chosen to suit Estonia’s cold climate, including different 30 Tallinn In Your Pocket
cherry trees, rhododendrons, irises and orrises. The rhododendron garden is the largest of its kind in the region. When the park was first established, one of the first projects was the construction of the Lower Garden and the canals in front of the palace. This complex area of the park was a maze of avenues, paths, gazebos, hedges and flower beds. After the death of Peter the Great in 1725, the work slowed down and the Lower Garden eventually grew into a semi-wild parkland. In 2012, the canal around the garden was rebuilt and the walkways by the channel were renovated in 2013-14. The Upper Garden, in contrast, is a sort of extension of the interior of the palace to the outdoors. The great doors of the main hall led directly into the ornate garden. The oak tree, planted by King Gustav V during his visit in 1929 can still be seen in the Upper Garden. The current Baroque flower garden was restored according to 18th century drawings. Unfortunately the Mirage Pond, once located on the upper terrace was filled in the late 1930s during the construction of the President’s administrative building. A rosarium now sits in its place. Rose Hill boasts 32 varieties of over 6000 roses. The roses have been picked to bloom twice a year and last until the first frost. It is the largest rosarium in Estonia. QL-7, www. kadriorupark.ee.
Canal of Kadriorg park. Photo: Kadi-Liis Koppel, EAS
Sightseeing - Kadriorg & Pirita Kadriorg Palace and Art Museum Italian master architect Niccolo Michetti designed this magnificent, Northern Baroque palace in 1718 at the request of Russian Tsar Peter the Great, who intended to use it as a summer residence for the royal family. The emperor named the estate for his wife Catherine I (‘Catherine’ is ‘Kadri’ in Estonian), hence the name of the area. The palace is now home to the Kadriorg Art Museum. In addition to perusing the nation’s collection of foreign art, visitors get to see the mind-bogglingly ornate Great Hall, and the room upstairs that served as president’s office in the 1930s. Don’t miss the lavish manicured gardens, out back. Until October 13: Dannebrog – The Flag That Fell from the Sky: The Golden Age of Danish Art. November 2 - April 5, 2020: Ars Academica: The University of Tartu Art Collection.QM‑7, Weizenbergi 37, tel. +372 606 64 00, www. kadriorumuuseum.ekm.ee. Open 10:00-18:00; Wed 10:00-20:00; closed Mon. Admission €6.50, reduced €4.50, family €13. Joint tickets to all branches of the Art Museum of Estonia available. Y Presidential Palace For a few years during Estonia’s first period of independence (1918 - 1940), the Estonian head of state worked out of the Kadriorg Palace, but in 1938, this purpose-built presidential palace was opened next to it, just up the hill. The Presidential Palace’s style echoes the Kadriorg, albeit without quite so much flourish. Since the building once again serves as the President’s office and residence, it’s closed to visitors, but you can still wander into the parking area for a
better view and, if your timing is lucky, you’ll see the honour guards marching out front.QM‑7, Weizenbergi 39. Kadriorg Park Information Point Looking for a bit more info on the beautiful gardens at Kadriorg Park? Visit the information point to find out about upcoming events or buy a couple of postcards and other souvenirs to take home.QL‑7, Weizenbergi 33, tel. +372 601 57 83, www. kadriorupark.ee. Open 10:00-17:00; closed Tue, Mon. Kumu Winning the title ‘European Museum of the Year 2008’ , Estonia’s largest art museum makes its home in this enormous, cutting-edge facility built into a limestone cliff in Kadriorg. It serves as both a national gallery, displaying treasured works from Estonia’s past, and as a contemporary art gallery, showing the latest trends. While here, be sure to explore the fascinating complex, built by Finnish architect Pekka Vapaavuori. Until October 27: Garden Exile: The Tuglas’s Home Garden Through Tanja Muravskaja’s Camera Lens. Until November 11: Art Museum of Estonia 100 Open Collections: The Artist Takes the Floor. Until January 5, 2020: Maire Männik: Estonian Legend in Paris. September 20 - January 26, 2020: The Conqueror’s Eye: Lisa Reihana’s In Pursuit of Venus. October 11 - March 2020: Edith Karlson, Mary Reid Kelley and Eva Mustonen.QM‑7, Weizenbergi 34/Valge 1, tel. +372 602 60 00, www.kumu.ekm.ee. Open 10:00-18:00; Thu 10:0020:00; closed Mon. Admission €8, reduced €6, family €16. Joint tickets to all branches of the Art Museum of Estonia available. Y
The most significant and extensive collection of Medieval and Early Modern church art in Estonia. EXHIBITION
The Virgin Mary: Woman, Mother, Queen 25.10.2019–26.04.2020 NIGULISTE MUSEUM Niguliste 3, Tallinn, Estonia niguliste.ekm.ee/en Opening hours: Wed–Sun 10am–5pm, Mon–Tue closed HERMEN RODE WORKSHOP. 1478–1481. RETABLE OF THE HIGH ALTAR OF ST. NICHOLAS’ CHURCH. DETAIL. ART MUSEUM OF ESTONIA
October - November 2019
Sightseeing - Kadriorg & Pirita Mikkel Museum Housed in the renovated kitchen building on the grounds of Kadriorg Palace and Park, the Mikkel Museum has one of Estonia’s most impressive private art collections. Johannes Mikkel donated his vast collection of European, Russian and Chinese paintings, prints, porcelain and icons to the Estonian Art Museum in 1994. Until March 1, 2020: Alfred Rõude: Collector with a Mission.QM‑7, Weizenbergi 28, tel. +372 601 58 44, www.mikkelimuuseum.ekm.ee. Open 10:00-18:00; Wed 10:00-20:00; closed Mon. Ad‑ mission €5, reduced €3.50, family €10. Joint tickets to all branches of the Art Museum of Estonia available. Y Seaside promenade by Pirita Road. Photo: Kadi-Liis Koppel, EAS
Peter the Great House Museum This humble little cottage’s claim to fame is that this was where Russian Tsar Peter the Great stayed during his visits to Tallinn before his Kadriorg Palace was complete. In fact it’s still filled with Peter’s furniture, portraits and other artefacts from his interesting life.QM‑7, Mäekalda 2, tel. +372 601 31 36, www. linnamuuseum. ee/peetrimaja. Open 10:00-17:00; Wed 10:00-20:00; Sun 10:00-16:00; closed Mon, Tue. Admission €4, re‑ duced €3, family €8. Y A. H. Tammsaare Museum In this rambling wooden house in Kadriorg, Tammsaare (1878 - 1940), one of the heavies of Estonian literature, completed Truth and Justice, an epic in five parts that has defied translation into English. The vast exhibition (in Estonian and English) includes more information than even the most diehard fans of the author would ever want to know.QL‑7, Koidula 12a, tel. +372 601 32 32, www.kirjanduskeskus. ee. Open 11:00-17:00; Wed 11:00-18:00; closed Mon, Sun. Admission €4, reduced €2, family €6. Y Russalka monument This striking sculpture of an angel facing out into the sea horizon is a memorial to the 177 men of the Russalka, a Russian military ship that tragically sunk while en route to Helsinki in 1893. Created by famed Estonian sculptor A.H. Adamson, the monument has become a Tallinn landmark and a traditional spot for Russian couples to lay flowers on their wedding day. QG‑6, Across Narva mnt., by the shore. 32 Tallinn In Your Pocket
Pirita A bit further out from Kadriorg is another district that provides an escape from the city’s bustle - Pirita. This historic district is actually within Tallinn city limits, only a 10 15 minute ride from the centre. When you get here though, you’ll never believe you were in Tallinn; suddenly you’re surrounded by lush forest, fresh air and, best of all - silence. Getting here is simple. Take bus N°1, 1A, 8, 34A or 38 from the underground stop at the Viru Centre. For the beach, convent or river area, get off at the Pirita stop, which is the first one after you cross the river. Metsakalmistu Cemetary Tallinn’s most famous cemetery, Metsakalmistu was officially opened in 1939. Among its most famous permanent guests are Estonia’s presidents Konstantin Päts and Lennart Meri, writers Lydia Koidula and Anton-Hansen Tammsaare, chess player Paul Keres, composer Raimond Valgre and singer Georg Ots. Even if you don’t visit these celebrity graves, a stroll through the rest of the cemetery is still a fascinating and peaceful experience. The ambiance is especially beautiful here on November 2, All Souls’ Day, and during Christmas when all of the plots are glowing with candles. Take bus N°34A or 38 from Viru Keskus bus terminal (C-4) to the Metsakalmistu or Pärnamäe stops. QP‑4, Kloostrimetsa tee 36, www.kalmistud.ee. Song Festival Grounds (Lauluväljak) Located directly between Kadriorg and Pirita, lies one of Estonia’s most important pieces of real estate, the Song Festival Grounds. In June of 1988 these grounds played host to over 100,000 Estonians who raised their collective voices in songs of freedom that would ultimately lead to Estonia regaining her independence after more than 50
Sightseeing - Kadriorg & Pirita Olympic flame, as well as the Olympic rings. A visit to the complex is worthwhile, even if just to stroll along the water, inspect the yachts, and have lunch in one of the outdoor cafés that operates here. Of course, you can also park your yacht here, if you happened to bring it with you.QN‑4, Regati pst. 1, tel. (+372) 639 88 00, www. piritatop.ee.
years of Soviet rule. Singing has always had an important place in the hearts of Estonians and the first song festival was held in Tartu back in 1869. Currently a Song Festival happens every couple of years, and still plays a huge part of the national identity. When there isn’t a festival happening, the grounds host numerous other events and concerts. If you’d like to take a peek at the historic grounds and the massive bowl structure where the choirs sing, the park is open to the public without an admission fee during non -event times. At the top of the hill you will also see a large golden sculpture of Gustav Ernesaks, the famous conductor who also played a big role in the Singing Revolution. QM‑6, Narva mnt. 95, www.lauluvaljak.ee. St. Bridget’s Convent ruins Rising up along the banks of the Pirita River, the spectacular ruins of this 15th-century convent make one of Tallinn’s more fascinating historic sights. Founded in 1407 by the Bridgetine Order, the convent was unique in that it housed both monks and nuns. The convent crumbled in a siege by Ivan the Terrible in 1577 and its stones were later carted off to construction projects throughout Tallinn. What remains today are the towering Gothic gable and walls of the main hall, as well as some surrounding foundations and cellars. Take bus N°1, 8, 34A or 38 from Viru väljak to the Pirita stop.QO‑4, Kloostri tee 9, tel. +372 58 17 35 60, www. piritaklooster.ee. Open 10:00-18:00. From November open 12:00 - 16:00. Admission €3, reduced €1.50, family ticket €5. From November free entrance. Y
Tallinn Botanical Garden With the richest collection of live plants in Estonia, the gardens are a well-kept secret. Around 8,000 species are arranged on 123ha of land, with large modern greenhouses where you can find displays of tropical, subtropical and desert plants. Take bus N°34A or 38 to the Kloostrimetsa stop.QQ‑4, Kloostrimetsa tee 52, tel. +372 606 26 66, www.botaanikaaed.ee. Open 11:00-17:00. Admission €5.50, reduced €3, family €10. A joint family ticket for the Tallinn Botanical Garden and TV Tower is €29. A joint family ticket for Tallinn Zoo, Estonian Museum of Natural History and Tallinn Botanic Garden is €35 and it may be used on separate days. See website for further admission info. Y TV Tower Officially opened on July 11th in 1980, the 314m tower was, and is, an imposing example of Soviet engineering. From its observation deck at the 175m level, which is the highest in Northern Europe, you can see Finland on a clear day. The renovated tower features a museum and a swank restaurant ‘Teletorn’. One of the more exciting features include some pretty freaky floor-windows that you’re encouraged to jump on and you can take full advantage of ‘streaking skyward’ in the lightning-fast elevators. Until March 31, 2021 a temporary exhibition ‘GENE-IUS’ looks at everything that makes up modern humans, like genes and DNA and genetic codes and more. Take bus N°34A or 38 from the Viru Keskus bus terminal on Narva mnt. to Teletorn stop. Avoid queues and book tickets in advance: https://pilet.teletorn.ee/ teletorn.QQ‑4, Kloostrimetsa 58a, tel. +372 686 30 05, www.teletorn.ee. Open 10:00-18:00. Restaurant open 10:00 - 21:00, Fri, Sat 10:00 - 23:00. Ticket €13, reduced €7, family €27. After 19:00 restaurant admission €3. A joint ticket for the Tallinn Botanical Garden and TV Tower is €15. See website for further admission info. Y
Where to eat
Tallinn Olympic Yachting Centre The most prominent leftover of Pirita’s Olympic past is its Olympic Yachting Centre, still an active part of life in Pirita. The imposing building itself, built for the 1980 Moscow Olympics, is a fascinating example of Soviet architecture. Nearby you can also see the stand for the facebook.com/TallinnInYourPocket
Kalev Yacht Club Restaurant A hidden gem in Tallinn, or well Pirita, but nevertheless, it’s worth a journey to the Kalevi Yacht Club. Not only is there a nice view over the marina, the food does not disappoint either. Simple, fresh cuisine that is inspired by European flavours. We quite liked the burger and the goat’s cheese salad, but you really can’t go wrong with anything on the menu.QN‑4, Pirita tee 17, tel. +372 623 91 58, www. jahtklubiresto.ee. Open 11:00-23:00. €€€. UBIS L6 October - November 2019
Tallinn for Families
Photo: Martin Dremljuga
Noblessner Just past the fascinating Seaplane Harbour, and Patarei Prison, the Noblessner Port area is quickly continuing the development of the seaside in Kalamaja. The historic submarine shipyard is now home to new apartment blocks, offices, and a growing number of galleries, restaurants, bars, shops and events. (see area J-6 on the city map)
A fascinating history Noblessner dates back to the early 20th century, when Tsarist Russia and Peter the Great began building up their navy in anticipation of war. Though the original plans of a war harbour were never completed, a huge submarine shipyard, named after Emanuel Nobel, nephew of Alfred Nobel, and his business partner Arthur Lessner (hence Noblessner), was built.
last vessels built as recently as 2018. Since 2009, the Noblessner Marina and Noblessner Yacht Club and Sailing School (NYCS) have also operated in the area. Today, Noblessner is flourishing, but itâ€™s far from completion, with building and renovation work expected to continue until the end of the 2020s.
The shipyard was famous for its submarines, built for the Russian Empire, but when Estonia gained independence in 1918, Noblessner was declared bankrupt and split between several smaller companies, which began manufacturing smaller ships due to lack of larger orders. During the Soviet period, Noblessner was renamed Factory Number 7 and was used to repair submarines and other ships damaged in World War II. After Estonia regained its independence in 1991, the shipyard remained active for a decade, with the 34 Tallinn In Your Pocket
Noblessner - the city’s new hotspot
Photo: Martin Dremljuga
Shopping in Noblessner The impressive Shishi store is packed full of inspiring decor for the home. On a smaller, but no less stylish scale, Kalhoj sells Scandinavian-style kitchen and dining room accessories. Treat yourself to jewellery at Baltic Brilliant or pamper yourself at Biomarketi Ilu- ja Tervisetuba, which offers ecological manis, pedis, and facials.
Dining in Noblessner You’ll find something for every taste and budget at Noblessner, including one of Estonia’s top restaurants (according to the White Guide Nordic). 180° is run by Michelin-starred chef Matthias Diether, so you can expect no less than an unforgettable gastronomic experience (see full review on page 56). Craft beer enthusiasts will not want to miss a visit to Põhjala Tap Room. For something quick and casual, head to Patarei Burger for a satisfying burger, or some of their tasty ‘loaded’ fries. Stay tuned, more restaurants and cafés will be opening in Prototehas and Kai Art Centre.
Art and culture in Noblessner Stop in for a good coffee and admire the art at Staapli Art Gallery. Navitrolla Gallery features the eclectic work of the beloved Estonian artist with the same name. Kai Art Centre opened in September. The waterfront old factory building is now home to a stunning exhibition space, auditorium, and restaurant. PROTO Invention Factory, where virtual reality brings history alive, will open on October 18. And, for those looking to stay out a bit later, head to Hall, a nightclub for underground electronic music.
Featured venues new Kai Art Centre Kai Art Center is set to become the largest hub for all things modern art-related in Estonia. Giving new life and purpose to one of the historic Noblessner, formerly secret, submarine and military ship building plant structures, Kai intends to unite and promote both local and international artists from all the various contemporary artistic disciplines. From artist-residency programs, special facebook.com/TallinnInYourPocket
October - November 2019
Noblessner - the city’s new hotspot Burgers so tasty, they are almost criminal
@ Staapli 3 -111 A barely legal burger by Patarei Burger
events, workshops, lectures, and a state-of-the-art cinema space - to unique and thought provoking exhibits, Kai is an innovative institution. Worthy of visiting simply for the art and artistic endeavours - on the ground floor of the premises you’ll find four eateries/locales that will provide an artistic experience for your tummy. A Japanese Gastro Bar Kampai, a ‘hygge’ inspired new Nordic restaurant, a hedonistic bar ‘Kaife’, and a bakery/pastry café Suhkruringel. A truly special and unique addition to Tallinn’s burgeoning place art/culinary scene.QJ‑6, Peetri 12, www.kai.center. Open 12:00-21:00; closed Mon. Exhibitions €6, reduced €3, family €10, cinema €5. Patarei Burger Named after the infamous ‘Battery’ prison just a bit down the road, this burger joint is just the place to grab an appy, fill your belly with one of their meat loaded brioche buns, or munch on some ‘loaded’ fries. While you’re here, you might as well try one of the local craft beers or signature cocktails to quench that traveller’s thirst. Vegetarian options can also be enjoyed here. J‑6, Staapli 3-111, tel. +372 56 63 69 00, www.patareiburger.ee. Open 12:0021:00; Fri, Sat 12:00-22:00; Sun 12:00-20:00. €€. PB SV6W
PROTO Invention Factory This Tsarist-era submarine factory in the revitalised Noblessner Port area, is the perfect backdrop for this science museum/virtual reality/invention theme park. With numerous, hands-on, VR goggles-on, mind-blowing main exhibits, numerous smaller attractions and more information than an average brain can handle - Proto is both educational, yet loads of fun, all packed into one very cool space. There’s truly something for every age group to enjoy. Both the young and the young-at-heart, will be inspired and thrilled by this Jules Verne, meets Da Vinci, meets “The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus”, Nikola Tesla-esque museum. Their excellent on-site café will also help replenish your mind and body throughout the adventure. NB! Opening October 20.QJ‑6, Peetri 10, tel. +372 506 70 12, www.prototehas. ee. Open 11:00-18:00; Fri, Sat 10:00-19:00. Admission €12, reduced €8, family €28. Staapli 3 Art Gallery and art Café The brainchild of an expat from the UK, the Staapli 3 Art Gallery and Art Café - is just that. Forget the snobby, ‘highbrow’ mentality of most ‘fine art’ institutions. This is a commercial gallery, they offer works of art which appeal to every taste and budget, and the art speak for itself. A full service gallery, they also pour a decent cup of coffee or tea, offer cakes and pastries - which can be enjoyed, surrounded by works of art. They want to fill your life with colour, whether for a mere hour or a lifetime. There truly is something for everyone, and both local as well as international artists are represented here.QJ‑6, Staapli 3-114, tel. +372 660 22 11, www.staapliart.ee. Open 10:00-20:00; Fri, Sat, Sun 09:00-20:00. PBS6
www.inyourpocket.com The perfect hide-away from the grey autumn weather
36 Tallinn In Your Pocket
The Dark Side of Tallinn
October and November are dark months in Estonia, with the days getting shorter and the nights a lot longer and colder. Historically, Estonians did not celebrate Halloween, but observed St. Martin’s Day and All Souls Day in the folk calendar. St. Martin’s Day (November 10) celebrates the end of the agrarian year and the beginning of winter. On this day, children dress up as men and go from door to door, singing and telling jokes in exchange for treats. On All Souls Day (November 2nd), Estonians light candles in the windows and on the graves of loved ones in remembrance. You can visit the Metsakalmistu Cemetery in the evening to see hundreds of candles burning on the plots in this beautiful forest cemetery. Tallinn is one of the oldest cities in Europe, founded in 1248, but some of the earliest human settlements date back 5000 years. A city can’t be around so long without a few dark secrets, hidden passageways, and haunted places to explore. We’ve put together a list of places, tours, activities, and even restaurants to help you explore the darker side of Tallinn. Tallinn has a few ghost stories of its own, like the Devil’s Wedding at Rataskaevu 16, the Exe‑ cutioner at Lühike Jalg Tower (see area C-1 on the map), probably Tallinn’s most haunted place, and the old haunted prison in the Stable Tower in the Danish King’s Garden (see photo). You can read more about these legends and ghost stories in our article Haunted Tallinn (see our Lühike Jalg tower website). Or see for yourself on a ghost tour of the city run by Nordic Experience (see p.19) where one of their knowledgeable guides take you on a walking tour of the haunted streets of Tallinn at night. Ronk Ronk Ghost and Folklore Tours also offers tours like ‘Oldest Ghost of Tallinn’ and ‘Hidden Stories of Down-town of Tallinn’ (see page 20).
You can of course wander through the city visiting some of the more eerie places yourself. You need not walk far in the Old Town to discover Vaimu (Ghost) Street between Lai and Pikk (see area B/C-3 on the map). It’s not clear why residents believed the street to be haunted, but at one point they objected when the town governor wanted to change the street’s name to ‘Evil.’ The 17th century Bastion Stable Tower Passages (see p. 23) offer guided tours through the underground passageways builts by the Swedes to protect the city. Visit the Dominican Monastery Claustrum (C-3, Müürivahe 33) where one of the most interesting spots may be the downstairs room at the Monastery that houses the ‘energy pillar’ purportedly the source of a mysterious power. For an even more interactive tour visit Tallinn Legends (see page 19) where you can go on a trip through Tallinn’s past in the form of theatrical and Monk statue at Danish King’s Garden interactive exhibits. But probably one of the spookiest places in the city, which an equally haunted past, is the imposing Patarei Prison (located at F-3, Kalaranna 2), which originally opened as a sea fortress in 1840, housed inmates from 1919 until 2004, and has been left virtually untouched since. Currently it is unfortunately closed to visitors, but its dreariness can still be experienced from the outside.
Former Patarei Prison. Photo by Marko Leppik.
halloween in tallinn While Estonians don’t really celebrate Halloween, the western customs associated with the day have made their way to Estonia and many bars and clubs around town organise Halloween events.
Kalamaja - Tallinn’s artsy district
Kalamaja Located just a short hop from the Balti jaam train station lies the eclectic and historic district of Kalamaja. The area’s name means ‘Fish House’, referring to its fishing past. Colourful wooden houses, funky shops, cool restaurants and bars, all add to the artsy/bohemian vibe of Kalamaja. (see area J-6/7 on the city map)
One of Tallinn’s last remaining ‘wooden house’ and antiquated industrial districts has seen somewhat of a trendy revival as of late, akin to what happened in the Soho districts of New York or London, albeit on a smaller scale. The revival, as with most cases in developed cities of the world, happened thanks to inexpensive real estate prices and the historic/industrial surroundings. First, the ‘hippies’, bohemians, artists and students set up shop and residence here. Now it seems that everyone wants a piece of the action and as a result real estate prices have gone through the roof over the last few years. What was once home to fishermen, sailors, dock-workers, shipbuilders and factory employees now houses boutiques, some great flea markets, high-brow eateries and a few cool nightspots for Tallinn’s hipsters and trend setters. There are in fact still quite a few industrial complexes and sea-oriented businesses operating in the area due to the proximity of the harbours and rail-lines that still skirt these districts. Besides being home to some architectural and often derelict delights, Kalamaja has some interesting sights from the fascinating one-time fortress Patarei Prison (J/K-6, Kalaranna 2), the now world-famous Estonia Piano Factory (J-6, Kungla 41), the 1928 Jugenstil Kalma Sauna 38 Tallinn In Your Pocket
(A-2, Vana-Kalamaja 9a) and Kalmistu Park (J-6), formerly home to Tallinn’s oldest cemetery, which was unfortunately flattened by the Soviets in 1964 to make way for military complexes. Clues to the park’s original purpose exist only in the form of a plaque and a bell tower from the year 1780. In terms of dining or shopping, one might expect that such an up-and-coming area would be on the pricey side - it’s not. Although quite trendy at the moment, most of the establishments in Kalamaja are much less expensive than those located in Old Town. Hopefully it will stay that way, at least for a little while. Although there are places to eat and shop scattered throughout the district (with new ones opening up every month), the epicentre of the whole Kalamaja frenzy, including shops, boutiques, handi-crafters, a large flea market, eateries and much of the nightlife scene, seems to be headquartered in and around the old Telliskivi factory and warehouse complex - Telliskivi Loomelinnak (Telliskivi Creative City). This is probably your best place to start when visiting the district and it’s easily reachable, just around the corner from the far end of the Baltic Jaam market. tallinn.inyourpocket.com
Kalamaja - Tallinn’s artsy district telliskivi creative city
Telliskivi Creative City is a revamped complex of old industrial buildings (formerly the Baltic Railways factory) and a defining feature of the über-hip Kalamaja district, and has become a magnet for all kinds of creative enterprises and activities. Apart from housing some off-beat restaurants and bars, funky design shops, The Vaba Lava theatre space, antique shops and the like, it’s also a living, breathing space for innovation, with offices available in a mini-hub – the perfect home for any creative industry company or NGO. A packed schedule of art exhibits, concerts, street festivals and other cultural happenings keeps the spotlight on this up-and-coming little ‘city’ and makes sure the crowds keep coming back.QJ-7, Telliskivi 60A, info@ telliskivi.eu, www.telliskivi.eu/en/.
Fotografiska Tallinn Internationally renowned Fotografiska has opened its new location in Telliskivi Creative City. The gallery or meeting place is known for bringing the world’s best photography to its walls, and its Tallinn location is no exception. The aim of this urban meeting place is to redefine the traditional museum space, where visitors are invited to linger and become inspired. Fotograf‑ iska includes exhibition and event spaces, a music club, bar, café, gift shop, and restaurant. The restaurant, run by one of Estonia’s top chefs Peeter Pihel, is located on the sixth floor, offering panoramic views of the city. The restaurant’s concept is ‘sustainable pleasure’, which combines top quality dining using sustainable ingredients with a zero waste policy. September 13 - November 24: ‘Wonderland’ by Kristy Mitchell (UK), August 30 - November 24: ‘Truth is Dead’ by Alison Jackson (UK), and September 20 - December 1: ‘Moving Mountains’ by Yang Fudong (PRC). QJ‑7, Tel‑ liskivi 60a/8, www.fotografiska.com/Tallinn. Open 09:00-01:00; Mon, Tue, Sun 09:00-23:00. Admission €14, reduced €10, family €28.
Where to eat Kalamaja has seen a boom in the number of restaurants in recent years. Here you’ll find everything from French to Mexican to modern Estonian bistros. Please refer to the Restaurants section for the explanation of the symbols. Boheem One of the first of a whole line of trendy eateries in the area, this bohemian and rather inexpensive café, serves up some hearty breakfast choices, delightful crepes, salads and delicious desserts along with all your favourite caffeinated beverages. It’s even bohemianly located behind the Balti Jaam market, a great choice after you’ve done some treasure hunting there. Certainly not a ‘fast food’ spot - Boheem is the kind of place for lingering rather than a quick bite. Conveniently located just next door, they also run an artsy pizzeria where they offer up decent Italian-style pizza at an affordable price. QJ‑7, Kopli 18, tel. +372 631 19 28, www.boheem.ee. Open 09:00-23:00; Sun, Sat 10:00-23:00. €. BS6W F-Hoone Located in the Telliskivi industrial/warehouse complex and one of the first eateries to set up shop here, F-Hoone is one of those success stories that every wannabe restaurateur dreams of and we rather enjoy it. The food is fresh and usually quite inspired. The atmosphere is certainly industrial and chic, the service attentive and the prices are surprisingly low for the quality and portion size - especially the daily offers. Child-friendly with a decent little play area as well. QJ‑7, Telliskivi 60a, tel. +372 53 22 68 55, www.fhoone. ee. Open 09:00-24:00; Sun 10:00-22:00. €€. TBWi Frenchy This eatery is indeed très French and actually quite stylish, as well as being an affordable option for a delicious and delightfully prepared meal. The menu changes somewhat frequently, but in general the classics always remain. The French onion soup was particularly tasty as were the Parisian gnocchi in an excellent mushroom cream sauce. Naturally facebook.com/TallinnInYourPocket
the French wines, beers and ciders are all quite well chosen, in fact the only thing we found to be missing were escargot and something containing truffles - which we assume is a seasonal thing.QJ‑7, Telliskivi 60A (Telliskivi Creative City B building), tel. +372 56 04 82 62. Open 12:00-23:30; Mon 17:00-23:00; Fri, Sat 12:00-24:00; closed Sun. €€. PB S6W Humalakoda This modern brewpub sits atop the Balti jaam market and boasts one of the best terraces in town, with a brewery inside. With ample local and international brews on tap, and plenty of non-beer choices as well, Humalakoda is a great choice for a casual drink or meal. The menu covers all the pub classics, but with a bit of a twist. And brunch fans will enjoy a plentiful Sunday brunch from 11:00 - 17:00. QJ‑7, Kopli 1, tel. +372 699 99 60, www.humalakoda.ee. Open 12:00-24:00; Sun 11:00-21:00. €€. PXTUBSV6W
October - November 2019
Kalamaja - Tallinn’s artsy district tel. +372 600 81 11, www.karbes.ee. Open 11:30-23:00; Sun 11:30-22:00; Fri, Sat 11:30-02:00. €€. B Kivi Paber Käärid Rock, Paper, Scissors despite having a quirky name, or perhaps because of it, is a multi-purpose joint which offers up some decent eats alongside some excellent beverages - including a great selection of craft beers and ciders. Housed in a former industrial building, the style and atmosphere are hip and the staff friendly and helpful. The menu is 100% gluten-free and they offer a large selection of vegetarian, lactose and casein-free items as well. We’re pretty sure that much of the beer isn’t gluten-free though - so best stick to the ciders and cocktails if that happens to be an issue for you. Live music and events are also hosted here many weekend nights.QJ‑7, Telliskivi 60a/7, tel. +372 600 36 26, www.kivipaber.ee. Open 12:00-23:00; Fri, Sat 12:00-02:00. €€. PTUBSV6W Kalmistu Park’s bell tower
Kaja Pizza This tiny pizzeria has a short menu, but what they do, they do well. Pizzas are made in their open kitchen in a woodfired oven. We suggest you get there early, because they are open until they run out of dough. We quite enjoyed the pizza with ‘nduja, a spicy sausage from Calabria.QI‑7, Õle 33, tel. +372 660 16 11, www.kajapizza.ee. Open 11:30-18:00. €. UBS6W Kalamaja Bakery This quaint little bakery, located on the aptly named ‘flour’ street kind of doubles as a small café as well. Their good are so sought after that there’s often a line-up in the morning hours to grab some fresh pastries to take with to work. One can certainly eat-in as well though and also grab a glass of wine or sip on some spirits if the mood moves you. They offer a wide variety of savoury and sweet pastries, but their cakes are splendid.QB‑1, Jahu 11, tel. +372 56 83 13 99. Open 07:30-19:00; Sat 10:00-16:00; closed Sun. €. S Kalamaja kohvik Sesoon This popular Kalamaja restaurant, known for its great prices and tasty brunch, moved to a new location. The first floor has a semi-open kitchen and café. Sesoon now also offers a unique buffet, with lovely sauces, low-temperature cooked fish and meat, vegetable casseroles, and marinated veggies, as well as a rich selection of freshly-baked sweet and savoury pastries, and cakes. QA‑2, Kotzebue 18, tel. +372 58 66 55 58, www.kohviksesoon.ee. Open 11:00-22:00; Sun 11:00-16:00. €€. PBSL6Wi Kärbes Kitchen&Bar Opened in the Vabalava theatre of the trendy Telliskivi area, Kärbes Kitchen & Bar is a welcome addition to the local dining scene. Enjoy daily lunch specials and an inventive, yet hearty menu.QJ‑7, Telliskivi 60A (C1 building), 40 Tallinn In Your Pocket
KOMA Craft beer fans will love this sleek, wood-panelled Nordic gastropub in Telliskivi. There is no shortage of local and international beers to try on tap or in bottle. KOMA’s menu is short, when compared to the number of drinks available, but what they do offer, they do well. The food boasts simple, local flavours that are plated to make dining here a bit of a show. QI‑7, Telliskivi 1, tel. +372 53 75 11 11. Open 17:00-23:00; Fri, Sat 17:00-02:00; closed Mon, Sun. €€. PBL6W Konteiner Named after the shipping container it’s located in, Konteiner serves up Vietnamese food to eat-in or takeaway. With ample seating both indoors and out, this is a great stop for a chilli fix, as many of their dishes pack some heat. We particularly enjoyed the red curry with prawns or chicken, as well as the Pho Xao Chay (wok-fried noodles with tofu and mushrooms).QJ‑7, Telliskivi 62, tel. +372 54 00 46 22, www.konteiner.ee. Open 11:00-21:00; Fri, Sat 11:00-23:00. €. BS Korsten Kitchen Named after the the large (non-functioning) smoke stack beside the restaurant, Korsten is one of the best meals we’ve had in a long time. It’s the combination of friendly and experienced service, an Mediterranean-inspired menu by a passionate young chef, reasonable prices, and a funky atmosphere that made this an all around great experience. Tip: try the mussels and cockles.QD‑2, Põhja pst. 27a, tel. +372 660 88 67, www.korstenresto.ee. Open 12:00-23:00; closed Sun. €€. PTUBS6W La Tabla For a unique Latin restaurant, of which there are very few in Tallinn, La Tabla is certainly worth a visit. The tortillas (both corn and wheat) are hand-made, the cuisine a fusion of various Central and South American traditions and the atmosphere is both colourful and cosy. Locals typically don’t like things as ‘caliente’ as those more familiar with tallinn.inyourpocket.com
Kalamaja - Tallinn’s artsy district this style of eatery, so if you want to spice it up a bit or have a special request - feel free to ask. Our quesadillas and tacos were superb.QJ‑7, Telliskivi 60, tel. +372 51 94 33 27, www.latabla.ee. Open 12:00-23:00; Sun 12:00-21:00. €€. PTUBISV6W
Ristikheina kohvik This cosy neighbourhood café is located a short walk from the Old Town and is certainly worth it. In addition to freshly baked pastries and cakes, Ristikheina also serves a hearty breakfast every day until 12:00 (14:00 at the weekends), with five breakfast dishes available all day. After breakfast, enjoy a rich selection of soups, salads, and mains. We quite liked the blinis.QI‑7, Ristiku 57, tel. +372 660 17 01, www. ristikheinakohvik.ee. Open 08.00-21.00; Sat, Sun 09.0019.00. €€. PTBISL6W ÜLO Brought to you by the same great minds behind Rataskaevu 16 and Pegasus, Ülo focuses mainly on vegan and vegetarian cuisine, but carnivores will find a few non-veggie items as well. While we loved our meal, beetroot risotto, a daily special, what truly sets Ülo apart from the rest is its friendly service. Don’t be surprised if you receive a little note on your napkin. QJ‑7, Kopli 16, tel. +372 605 00 52. Open 12:00-23:00; Fri, Sat 12:0024:00. €€. PB
kalamaja Nightlife Although currently known primarily for its great eateries, the Kalamaja district is increasingly becoming a nightspot as well and while still mostly popular with locals, is starting to see an influx of expats and tourists alike. Although currently known primarily for its great eateries, the Kalamaja district is increasingly becoming a nightspot as well and while still mostly popular with locals, is starting to see an influx of expats and tourists alike. Klubi HALL Just a little outside of the centre, this underground club is a ‘Mecca’ for those into hardcore techno. Located in the old Noblessner factory building, Hall features elecfacebook.com/TallinnInYourPocket
Estonia’s first dedicated craft beer bar
· Over 100 craft beers from the worlds best brewers · Full range of Estonian microbrews · Beer flights · English ciders and botanical soft drinks · Relaxed interior with outdoor terrace ·
Telliskivi 60A · (+372) 5866 4496
Lendav Taldrik Located in the black building towards the end of the Telliskivi Complex, the ‘Flying Saucer’ or ‘Plate’, depending on how you choose to interpret it, is certainly a welcome edition to the area. The interior style is quite excellent - with its rugged good looks, industrial sensibility and just the right amount of comfort, guests here will feel both stylish and at home. The cuisine is kind of an Asian-fusion blend, with definite Indian leanings, and all is certainly tasty to say the least. Decent vegetarian options also available. Fast, friendly service is just a mango on the lassi - so to speak.QJ‑7, Telliskivi 60A (E building), tel. +372 621 42 22, www.lendavtaldrik.com. Open 12:00-22:00; Fri, Sat 12:00-01:00. €€. PTUBSV6W
tronic music and visual arts, introducing Eastern European underdogs to the world. The crowd here really depends on the programme. Check their website or social media pages for upcoming events. QJ‑6, Peetri 6, www.hall.vision. Kohvik Tops Kind of an artsy-trendy-underground place, Tops is certainly ‘tops’ to over 6,000, primarily locals - at least on Facebook. Hosting a wide-variety of events ranging from live music to film nights and a whole host of other happenings, including something called ‘Femme Fatale’. This nightspot can truly get packed on the weekend nights and the wide-range of the people who hang out here certainly makes for an interesting time. They also offer a decent selection of lite-bites that happen to go well with drinks and the prices are incredibly decent for Tallinn.QA‑1, Soo 15, tel. +372 56 79 63 33. Open 16:00-24:00; Thu 16:0001:00; Fri, Sat 16:00-03:00; closed Sun, Mon. XEL 6W Odeon This funky bar simply oozes style and comfort. Think upscale diner, though you wouldn’t find any of this food in your typical diner. Their menu features dishes meant for sharing - we really loved the snacks, like filo wrapped merguez sausage and the nduja scotched egg, as well as truffle parmesan fries. The flora and fauna dishes are slightly larger, so if you don’t feel like sharing, these are a generous serving for one. The cockOctober - November 2019
Kalamaja - Tallinn’s artsy district to choose from in the fridges as well. This bar is located in the Telliskivi complex and in keeping with the industrial, atmosphere of the area, is stylish yet industrial in feel. Great terrace in summer (voted one of Tallinn’s finest) for catching rays all day, and night. It can get super busy on weekends, but it’s totally worth a visit.QJ‑7, Telliskivi 60A, tel. +372 58 66 44 96, www.pudel.ee. Open 16:00-24:00; Thu 16:00-01:00; Fri 16:00-02:00; Sat 12:00-02:00; Sun 14:00-24:00; closed Mon. UBIS6W
Graffiti at Telliskivi Creative City
tails are exceptional, especially their selection of gin and tonics. Located a short tram ride towards to Kopli, Odeon is certainly worth the slight detour.QI‑6, Kopli 27, tel. +372 527 27 12, www.odeon.ee. Open 12:0023:00; Fri, Sat 12:00-03:00; closed Sun. PU B S VL 6 W Põhjala Tap Room Just a short jaunt from the centre, this pub, set in the revived Noblessner Port area is worth the trip. Ranked among the the top 100 breweries in the world, Põhjala has taken the the local craft beer scene by storm - and tours of the brewery can be booked in advance. The spacious tap room boasts an ever-changing selection of craft beers, ciders, and cocktails. Their bustling kitchen churns out some fantastic BBQ, alongside their own take on some classic American smoke-house fare.QJ‑6, Peetri 5, tel. +372 56 66 28 00, www.pohjalabeer.com/taproom. Open 12:00-24:00; Fri, Sat 12:00-02:00; Sun 11:00-17:00; closed Mon. UB6W Pudel Baar ‘Bottle Bar’ operates under the philosophy that a decent watering hole should stand on the foundation of great beers, ciders, and other quality beverages. Fourteen taps serve top quality ales - and many from local Estonian breweries. Given the name, you’ll also find loads of drinks
Shvips Why whine when you can drink wine? This great little wine bar in Kalamaja has a great, quirky yet cosy atmosphere, an excellent selection of wines and prices that make coming here worth it for aficionados and novices alike. Shvips also offers up some nice delicatessen snacks that pair perfectly with many of their wines. A decent selection of other beverages can also be had for those not into fermented grape juice.QJ‑7, Telliskivi 51i, tel. +372 58 22 58 95, www. shvips.ee. Open Wed, Thu 18:00-24:00; Fri, Sat 18:0002:00; closed Mon, Tue, Sun. BLW Sveta Baar This just might be one of the coolest bars we’ve ever been to in Tallinn. New music, parties and culture, top that off with super cool and friendly staff and you’ve got yourself a great bar for an even better night out! QJ‑7, Telliskivi 62, tel. +372 56 88 91 01, www.sveta.ee. Open 17:00-24:00; Fri 17:00-06:00; Sat 12:00-06:00; Sun 12:00-19:00. Ad‑ mission on Fridays and Saturdays €5-15. BEL 6W new The Juniperium gin bar While you can book a tour at this award-winning distillery, you can also enjoy an evening at their elegant bar. Gin is what’s on the menu here, including some exceptional cocktails. Staff are very knowledgeable and friendly. QJ‑7, Telliskivi 60M, www.junimperium.ee. Open Wed, Thu 19:00-24:00; Fri 17:00-01:00; Sat 13:00-01:00; closed Mon, Tue, Sun. Tiks Tiks is a wine shop and bar located in the trendy Kalamaja neighbourhood. Friendly and knowledgeable staff, along with reasonable prices make this a good stop for a glass of wine, or two on an evening out.QJ‑7, Kopli 14, tel. +372 604 62 99. Open 12:00-22:00; Fri, Sat 12:00-02:00; closed Sun, Mon. BIL6W
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Vabrik If you think all wine bars are for snobs, the Vinoteque Vabrik is proof that they are not. The team at Vabrik are both passionate and knowledgeable about all things wine and can help you find the right bottle by letting you taste it for yourself. Come in for a glass of wine or take part in one of their regular tastings or events. QJ‑6, Vabriku 6, tel. +372 56 99 53 98, www.vabrik.eu. Open 14:0022:00; closed Sun, Mon. BL6W tallinn.inyourpocket.com
Super Skypark - where the fun never ends! (see page 42)
Apart from the usual, boring sightseeing tours there are loads of other activities available in Tallinn. And as Tallinn has increasingly become a destination for families, we list plenty of things to do and see that will intrigue both young and old alike - for the tourist it can be a bit of a chore to figure out just where best to take the kids and what activities will keep them occupied.
Bowling & Billiards Hill Hill Billiard Located in the trendy Kalamaja/Telliskivi area, Hill Hill Billiard has become a favourite among locals. The spacious billiard hall offers plenty of entertainment in the form of billiards, darts, snooker, pinball and air hockey, as well as a few other table games. Prices are reasonable and darts are free. There is a weekly HCP tournament on Mondays, with plenty of other events taking place each month. Check their Facebook page for more details.QJ‑7, Telliskivi 57, tel. +372 511 91 72. Open 14:00-24:00; Fri 14:00-03:00; Sat 12:00-03:00; Sun 12:00-24:00. Kuulsaal This ultra-modern, ultra-cool, two-storey club offers the closest bowling to Old Town. Try their blacklight system for a cosmic effect. 12 lanes €16 - 26/hr. They also offer seven pool tables for €6 - 8 per hour.QD‑4, Mere pst. 6, tel. +372 661 66 82, www.kuulsaal.ee. Open 11:0023:00; Sun 10:00-23:00; Fri 11:00-02:00; Sat 10:0002:00. Also at: Sõpruse pst. 15, Viimsi, tel. (+372) 605 11 01, email@example.com. Open 11:00 - 23:00, Fri 11:00 - 01:00, Sat 10:00 - 01:00, Sun 10:00 - 23:00.
Entertainment venues Blue Drum This event management and entertainment company, quite literally in some cases, dances to the beat of their own drum. Operating throughout the Baltics as well as Finland, their aim is to deliver fun, quirky and original activities for tourist, business and local groups alike - they even offer them in up to 6 languages. From team-building programs, theatrical sightseeing tours, to outdoor adventure games, they really cover everything, and each one can also be custom-tailored to fit your needs and wishes. Some of the more elaborate activities should be discussed and booked well in advance - however there are a few group adventures that can be arranged on short notice, such as the Old Town iPad Adventure Game and the Soviet Interrogation scenario. To find out more about these and all the other thrilling adventures, make sure to visit their website or drop them an e-mail.QC‑4, Olevimägi 16, tel. +372 646 06 34, www.bluedrum.eu. Energy Discovery Centre Based in a renovated, over 100-year-old power plant building just opposite Old Town and the first of its kind in the Baltics, the Energy Discovery Centre is the place to discover science with a hands-on approach. The building houses unique historic devices and more than 130 hands-on exhibits dealing with themes such as electricity, magnetics nuclear energy, sound and optics. Perhaps one of the coolest exhibits will actually allow the visitor to experience ‘lighting’ - up close and personal, via the Tesla Coil. They also have a virtual planetarium, temporary exhibitions, interesting theatre programmes and some great workshops (theatre and workshops are available for groups, pre-booking is a must). Temporary exhibition The Butterfly Effect is on display until October 31.QC‑2, October - November 2019
Leisure Põhja pst. 29, tel. +372 620 90 20, www.energiakeskus. ee. Open 10:00-19:00; Sun, Sat 11:00-19:00. Admission €9, reduced €7, family €25. Y Escape Room Factory Various laser games, indoor adventure trail, escape room and rock-climbing. See website for details.QL‑8, Tartu mnt. 80j, tel. +372 510 31 62/(+372) 53 45 67 00, www. theescaperoom.ee. Open 12:00-23:00. €5/laser game. 1-2 people in escape room for 60 minutes €45. Park Minigolf As the biggest minigolf centre in the Nordics, Park Minigolf offers indoor minigolf all year round. Choose between two courses: the Park Course and the Wild Wild West Saloon. The Park Course has 16 holes and is fun for everyone. The Wild Wild West Saloon is meant for more advanced players. Take a break from shopping. Grab a putter and a beverage and play a quick round with your friends! QK‑7, Ahtri 9 (Nautica), tel. +372 632 00 30, www.parkminigolf.ee. Open 10:00-21:00; Fri, Sat 10:00-22:00.
SPK Paintball This outfit has an onsite shooting area as well as a few offsite areas outside Tallinn, such as forests, old military bases etc. Equipment rental at their onsite facilities and 500 paint-balls cost €20. For groups of 30 or more the instructor is free of charge. After the games are done and you’ve had your ‘balls handed to you’ there’s even a grilling area where you can relax and tell tall tales about the ‘war’.QP‑5, Narva mnt. 133, tel. +372 524 54 84/(+372) 524 78 78, www.spk.ee. Open 10:00-19:00. Spot of Tallinn Professional or amateur? This is the place for extreme sports in Tallinn. Spot of Tallinn has a BMX motocross training track, skate parks, gymnastics and acrobatics facilities, trampolines, and much more! There is something for all ages and abilities, and coaches and instructors are always on hand to guide you.QKrati tee 2, Peetri village, Rae parish, tel. +372 56 23 28 68, www.spotoftallinn.ee. Open 10:00-19:00. Super Skypark Located at the top of Tallinn’s newest shopping/lifestyle/ experience centre T1, Super Skypark is actually rather su44 Tallinn In Your Pocket
per. The largest entertainment facility of its kind in the region, and featuring the largest trampoline area in Europe – it’s a paradise for the young, and the young at heart. Bumper cars, a 360° cinema, a 7D cinema, the SkyLab mini science centre, the unique in Europe - rooftop ferris wheel (see Sightseeing section), a relaxing 21+ chill-out lounge just for adults, a café, an eatery, 17 party rooms for kids’ birthday celebrations … your youngsters will forget all about their screens for a good while. Climbing, sliding, jumping, running, crawling, exploring and learning – did we mention this place is super? It’s also exceptionally easy to get to, taking tram N°4 to Ülemiste jaam stop either from the city center or the airport.QM‑8, Peterburi tee 2 (T1 Mall of Tallinn), tel. +372 656 51 15, www. superskypark.ee. Open 10:00-22:00. SkyLab and shop open 11:00 - 21:00. Daily pass €10, reduced €5, family €18. Free entrance for up to two accompanying adults who don’t use the attractions. SkyLab daily pass €5, family €18. See website for more admission info. Y Tondi Shooting Range Offering the largest indoor shooting range in the Baltics, the team of experts at Ghost Tactics are more than happy to set you and your friends up with a shooting experience like no other. From Glocks, to AK47s from Smith & Wessens to M4s - you’ll get to try all sorts of different guns each with their own unique brand of hole-punching power. Loads of various packages are on offer here, such as the ‘KGB Premium’, the ‘Adrenalin Rush’ and the very popular ‘From Russia With Love’. They also cater to stag events, tactical and self defence shooting courses, as well as shooting courses for those interested in taking things one step further by getting their gun licence. You can also join the Ghost Club, kind of like a gym membership only you train with guns instead of weights. See website for the full range of packages, services and prices. You can get here by taxi, but alternately take bus numbers 5, 14, 18, or 36 from the Viru stop (C-3) and get off at the Kalev stop (J3).QJ‑9, Pärnu mnt. 142a, tel. +372 55 58 54 16, www. laskmine.ee. Open 12:00-20:00. LH TopGun Shooting Range Located within view of the Pirita harbour, what TopGun lacks in size it certainly makes up for it it in calibre. This intimate shooting range is a great place for individuals and/ or groups to book various shooting packages - and they offer quite a nice variety of handguns, shotguns, and modern sporting rifles, as well as a few antique and Soviet-era classics. Their licenced and experienced instructors are always on hand to ensure the safe handling and operation of firearms, and they can also make recommendations on the packages and weapons that best suit each individual. Conference facilities onsite, as well as a sauna for those that like to sweat after filling targets full of hot lead. See website for full range of guns, services and packages. Prearranged booking is advised.QN‑4, Regati puiestee 1 (Olympic Yachting Centre), tel. +372 56 37 77 72, www.topgun. ee/en/. Open 12:00-20:00. Y tallinn.inyourpocket.com
Rangi Saun. Photo: Ekvilibrist
Saunas Saunas are kind of a big thing in Estonia. It’s early uses were primarily for hygienic and health reasons, but has also long been used to strengthen familial bonds, friendships and even to cement ties with strangers. Depending on the facilities, sauna can be enjoyed year round and while in Tallinn, visitors really should have at least one sauna - it is part of the true ‘Estonian experience’ after all. Pretty much every hotel in Tallinn has at least one, there are also pubs with saunas, sports facilities with saunas, private saunas and public saunas, here we have listed just a few. So get naked, grab a few friends and get sweaty! It’s great for mind, body and spirit! Club26 VIP Sauna On the 26th floor of the Radisson Blu Hotel Olümpia the private sauna offers perhaps the best views one can have while enjoying a sauna in the city. Sauna includes small pool, lot’s of room and even a small balcony. Catering also available from their Senso restaurant. Monday to Thursday 50€/hour until 15:00, 65€/hour after, Friday to Sunday €80/ hour. See website for details and booking.QK‑8, Liivalaia 33 (Radisson Blu Hotel Olümpia), tel. +372 631 55 85, www.club26.ee. Open 08:00-24:00. Kalev Spa VIP Sauna Kalev Spa’s VIP sauna is fairly comfortable and quite decent for sweating it out with friends. VIP sauna can accommodate up to 10 people. Sauna has a hot-tub with jets and comfortable lounge to hang out in. Provided you’re there during the water-park opening hours, you’ll also be able to enjoy a swim. Catering available. €70 - 80/hour.QD‑4, Aia 18, tel. +372 649 33 00, www.kalevspa.ee. Open 09:0022:30. For a 4 hour visit admission €35.
My City Hotel sauna Looking for somewhere to relax? Look no further than My City Hotel’s new renovated sauna in the heart of the Old Town. This cosy, private sauna is perfect for small groups of up to four people and has everything you might need for an afternoon of relaxation. In addition to the award-winning Huum hearth in their Finnish-style sauna, there’s a Jacuzzi with excellent massaging jets. Towels are included, too. Private sauna with Jacuzzi up to 4 people, first hour €30, €20/hour after that.QC‑5, Vana-Posti 11/13, tel. +372 622 09 00, www.mycityhotel.ee. Open 08:0023:00. Rangi saun This unique smoke sauna is the only traditional smoke sauna in Tallinn that you can actually take part in. Visits to their sauna are available upon pre-booking with them in advance. Head leili!QNõmme district, Tallinn, www. rangisaun.com. Tallink City Hotel Round Sauna Have you ever been in a round sauna? Here’s your chance! The Round Sauna can accomodate up to eight people in a true Finnish sauna. The price is €35/hour. The sauna is connected to a private room, and offers a special sauna menu. QE‑5, A. Laikmaa 5, tel. +372 630 08 00, www. tallinkhotels.com/tallink-city-hotel/saunas. Tallink Spa & Conference Hotel sauna This stylish and comfortable Finnish-style sauna can be reserved for up to 12 guests and upon request you can also access the pools and public saunas of the Aqua Spa. An hour session Monday to Friday from 08:00 - 16:00 costs €20, after 16:00 and on weekends it raises to €32.QE‑2, Sadama 11a, tel. +372 630 08 08, www.tallinkhotels. com/tallink-spa-conference-hotel/private-sauna. Open 24hrs.
fact #87 Have you ever heard sand sing? It’s a strange phenomenon that happens when you step in the sand on the islands of Hiiumaa and Saaremaa, which sound like a violin playing.
Kalma saun If you want to get that old-fashioned, communal, neighbourhood sauna feeling that uses the traditional method of wood heating, this is your best bet. Built in 1928, Kalma is Tallinn’s oldest public bath. There are men’s and women’s general baths (complete with swimming pool). Men €10 - 11/person, women €8.50 - 10/person. Two private saunas also available for rent by the hour.QA‑2, Vana-Kal‑ amaja 9a, tel. +372 627 18 11, www.kalmasaun.ee. Open 11:00-22:00; Sun, Sat 10:00-23:00. facebook.com/TallinnInYourPocket
October - November 2019
Leisure Spa & Beauty You don’t have to go far to find pure relaxation and pampering in Tallinn. There are many great spas and salons right here in town, where you will find everything from beauty treatments to saunas. Go ahead, indulge a little. Aqua Spa Take an afternoon off at the Aqua Spa! Located near the port, the spa offers different saunas (including steam saunas, a Finnish sauna and a hammam stone bench), a large indoor pool, children’s pool and an outdoor swimming pool open year round. Indulge in smoothies or cocktails at the pool bar. A private sauna can be booked for up to 12 people, along with a spacious lounge where you can enjoy drinks and snacks.QE‑2, Sadama 11a, tel. +372 630 10 28, www.tallinkhotels.com/tallink-spa-conferencehotel/aquaspa. Open 10:00-22:00. Wellness centre open 08:00 - 20:00. Y
M-Room Barbershop For busy yet style-conscious men on the go, M-Room offers great value in a haircut and you don’t even need to make an appointment. Various membership options are available and complimentary beer or coffee are happily offered while you wait.QD‑5, Estonia pst. 5, tel. +372 602 05 67, www.mroom.com/estonia. Open 09:0020:00; Sat 10:00-18:00; closed Sun. Also at: B-1, Kopli 6, tel. (+372) 53 46 06 56. Open Tue - Fri 11:00 - 19:00, Sat 10:00 - 18:00, Mon, Sun closed. Massaažistaap A wide range of professional massage treatments for men, women and children. Prices starting from 30€/hour. Please see website for full details and book your treatment ahead of time.QC‑5, Müürivahe 15, tel. +372 51 97 00 64, www.massaazistaap.ee. Open 10:00-20:00.
Aurea Ayurveda Health Centre Aurea is an Ayurveda and massage studio located in the heart of the city where you can come to restore your body’s natural balance with over 20 different types of massage and 10 different types of therapy.QK‑7, Narva mnt. 7d, tel. +372 669 67 73, www.aurea.ee. Open 10:0019:00; closed Sat, Sun. Kalev Spa Health & Beauty centre Pamper yourself at this brand new health and wellness centre, which offers a wide range of health and beauty services. Their friendly, experienced and highly trained staff use only the best products and equipment. Choose from a long list of services and indulge in a treatment for your hands, feet, face, or whole body. The centre also offers a variety of rehabilitative and body-strengthening services, including appointments with nurses, localised cold and heat therapy, a salt chamber, light therapy, and ECGs. QD‑4, Aia 18, tel. +372 649 33 50, www.kalevspa. ee. Beauty salon is open Mon - Fri 08:30 - 20:00, Sat 09:00 - 20:00, Sun 09:00 - 17:00. Health Centre is open Mon - Fri 08:30 - 17:00. Kalev Spa Water Park Kalev Spa has one of the largest indoor water parks in Estonia, as well as the only 50-meter pool in the city. The newly renovated water park includes four slides, children pools, a massage pool, and saunas. The Sauna-Oasis is the newest addition to the complex and is for adults only. Here you can relax in peace and quiet in different jacuzzis and saunas. The fitness centre offers different group workouts and a spacious gym with a view of the pool. You can also book a private sauna with Jacuzzi and private access to the water park (for up to 15 persons).QD‑4, Aia 18, tel. +372 649 33 70, www.kalevspa.ee/veekeskus. Open 06:4521:30; Sat, Sun 08:00-21:30. For a 3 hour visit, the price for adults €19, reduced €16 and a family ticket (2 adults plus up to 3 children) is €49. Daily and 1.5 hour admis‑ sion also available. 46 Tallinn In Your Pocket
Mustamäe Elamus Spa This new spa and sauna complex offers plenty of options for relaxation, for both young and old. With 21 different saunas, different spa treatments, a 25-metre swimming pool, as well as kids pool, what more could you ask for. Elamus Spa has three different types of admission: the swimming pass with traditional sauna access from 06:00 - 23:00 on weekdays and 09:00 - 23:00 at the weekends; the friends and family pass, which gets you access to 12 saunas and the pool; and the Spa 21+ pass, which is meant for those 18 and older and includes access to 21 saunas, the pool, and free towel and robe use. At the weekends, there’s a DJ and the spa is open until 02:00. (12:00 - 23:00 on weekdays).QG‑10, Akadeemia tee 30, tel. +372 650 20 00, www.elamusspa.ee. Open 10:00-23:00. Spa ad‑ mission €12-19 and SPA 21+ €25-35, swimming pool admission €6-12, depending on the time of your visit. Pin-up Tallinn This hair salon for men and women seems more like a curiosities shop than hairdresser, but offers a welcome change from the hundreds of seemingly similar salons throughout town. The wooden interior almost takes you back in time to a turn of the century barber shop, save of course for all the pin-up girls. Come in for a trim or discuss a new style altogether.QC‑4, Vaimu 1, tel. +372 58 08 81 21, www. pin-up.ee. Open 10:00-19:00; closed Sun. Also at: D-3, Müürivahe 36, tel. +372 56 07 00 09. tallinn.inyourpocket.com
KALEV SPA HOTEL & WATER PARK Aia 18/ Kanuti 2,10111 Tallinn www.kalevspa.ee firstname.lastname@example.org
Shnelli Day Spa Hair and beauty salon with spa treatments.QA‑4, Toompuiestee 37, tel. +372 631 01 60, www.spalife. ee. Open 10:00-20:00; Sat 10:00-18:00; closed Sun.
Regular ceramics courses are held on Mondays and Tuesdays.QB‑3, Kooli 7, tel. +372 646 40 96, www. asuurkeraamika.ee. Open 11:00-18:00; Sat 11:0015:00; closed Sun.
Thai Orchid Spa Thai massage performed by specialists from Thailand. QD‑5, Vana-Viru 13, tel. +372 59 99 99 88, www. thaispa.ee. Open 09:00-21:00; Sun 10:00-21:00.
Ceramics Studio For a truly personal souvenir of Tallinn you might want to check out this ceramics studio which offers lessons every week to those interested in such things. Lessons are 2 hours in length and cost €19 per person. It’s also possible to order private lessons for groups of up to 10 people, see website for details.QC‑5, Vene 6, tel. +372 644 02 36, www.keraamikakoda.ee. Open 11:0018:00.
Zen SPA The Kreutzwald Hotel Tallinn features a small Zen SPA with three stylish treatment rooms, including two double treatment rooms, two saunas and a party room with a Japanese pool. The spa concept combines ancient Asian Zen philosophy with contemporary comfort and modern technologies. The spa’s products are organic and 100% natural, and represent luxurious international eco-friendly brands. QJ‑8, Endla 23, tel. +372 666 48 00, www.kreutzwaldhotel.com. Open 09:0020:00.
Workshops Asuur Keraamika Located inside one of Tallinn’s medieval defence towers, Loewenschede - Asuur might just be one of the most unique ceramic boutiques/workshops around. The artists use different styles and techniques to create unique work, reflecting personal interests. facebook.com/TallinnInYourPocket
Kalev Master’s Chamber Located in the loft above the Kalev candy shop in the Rotermanni Quarter, the Master Chamber provides guests with the opportunity to create their own marzipan figurines or decorate their own fine chocolates. What could make a better memory of your time in Tallinn than something sweet, created by your own hands - of course, whether or not it ends up being a good memory probably depends on your artistic abilities or lack there of. Workshops are available for a minimum of four guests and arrangements should be made ahead of time by phone, by e-mail or even in person.QE‑4, Roseni 7 (Rotermann Courtyard), tel. +372 54 55 58 86/(+372) 54 52 58 29, www.kalev.eu. Open 10:0020:00; Sun 11:00-18:00. October - November 2019
Dive into the culinary wilderness at FARM. In Tallinn it seems they grant a new restaurant licence every week and sometimes we do miss one, but we’ve tried our best to have an accurate list by print time. Although changing for the better, be aware that in many cases you’ll have to seat yourself, so don’t wait around like a dummy - just grab an available seat and you’ll eventually be brought a menu. In pubs, you’ll likely need to order and pay at the bar. Service in the centre is nearly always English-speaking and foreign-language menus are the rule - although, the words may not always be spelled correctly. VAT (20%) is always included and a gratuity should never be added to the bill.
Estonian It used to be that if you walked into an Estonian restaurant in Tallinn, you could expect to find a lot of heavy pork dishes on the menu as well as the traditional fare of herring and potatoes, sauerkraut, etc. These days, however, there are two classes of ‘Estonian’ restaurants - new Estonian cuisine and traditional. The new cuisine is usually a fusion of traditional and international cuisines along with the chef’s own vision of what Estonian cuisine should be. These eateries use primarily fresh, local and often organic ingredients wherever possible. Both have their own merits - the traditional cuisine will leave your belly warm and full and the new will usually be more of a feast for your senses. Farm Looking into the window of this eatery you might kind of wonder what on earth is happening here. A table all set up with a wild boar and wolf eating dinner enjoying wine, they are surrounded by their friends Mrs Fox and Mr Raven. Certainly a scene not likely witnessed before - but also something that begs you to at least have a peek in48 Tallinn In Your Pocket
side. The elaborate restaurant is all decked out with birdcage chandeliers and rustic elements mixed with a certain amount of elegance. The open kitchen allows you to see the chefs at work preparing some delicious meals - add to it some great artisan breads and their own craft-beers and the whole thing comes together quite nicely.QC‑5, Müürivahe 27B, tel. +372 517 32 61, www.restaurant. farm. Open 14:00-23:00; Fri, Sat 12:00-24:00; Sun 14:0022:00. €€€. PUBISJW Kaerajaan Named after a popular national folk dance, this is an Estonian-themed restaurant with a modern twist. It consists of a café on the main floor and a slightly more formal restaurant in the top floor. You won’t find any of the traditional, national dishes on the menu, however you will be pleased to discover many Estonian ingredients sporting an haute cuisine style. Check out the upstairs toilet for a truly architectural experience.QC‑5, Raekoja plats 17, tel. +372 615 54 00, www.kaerajaan.ee. Open 11:00-22:00; Fri, Sat 11:00-23:00. €€€. PTBSJ6W Kuldse Notsu Kőrts Heaven for pork-lovers, at the ‘Golden Piglet Inn’ the cooks even put bacon in the bread! This country-style Estonian restaurant undeniably caters to the tourist crowd, but we really liked the bright, folk-art motif. The menu is much more interesting than the heavy food however, offering such dishes as the ‘Estonian sausage feast for two’… get your minds out of the gutter ladies, or the ever popular ‘crisp pork knuckle with sauerkraut.’ Despite the carnivorous theme, a selection of vegetarian dishes are available for those herbivores out there.QB‑5, Dunkri 8, tel. +372 628 65 67, www.kuldnenotsu.ee. Open 12:00-23:00. €€€. BISJ6W tallinn.inyourpocket.com
Restaurants SYMBOL key T Child-friendly
J Old Town location
6 Pets allowed
U Facilities for the disabled
E Live music
X Smoking area
V Home delivery
L Free parking
Y Partner of Tallinn Card
Open Su-Th 11:00-22:00 Fr-Sat 12-23:00 Raekoja plats 17
(Town Hall Square 17)
+372 615 5400
Based on the average price of a main course. €
Up to 7 euros
€€€ 14 - 19 euros
8 - 13 euros
€€€€ Over 20 euros
Leib Another one of our favourites, Leib - which means bread in Estonian, has hit the mark on each of the multiple occasions we’ve visited. The service is stellar, the fresh and interesting cuisine certainly pleases the palate and the atmosphere - a breath of fresh air. Fantastic home-baked bread and prices that won’t leave you broke.QC‑3, Uus 31, tel. +372 611 90 26, www. leibresto.ee. Open 12:00-15:00;18:00-23:00; Sat 12:00-23:00; Sun 12:00-21:00. €€€. PTBISJ6W
Stenhus Restaurant Schlössle Hotel’s restaurant is a combination of old world elegance and modern style, rolled into an Estonian dining experience. The menu focuses on the perfect balance between food and fine art, and the creative flair of head chef Timofei Monahhov truly shines. With produce and foods, up to 90% of which are farmed, fished or to be found throughout Estonia or her waters - the Stenhus team of culinary artists are able to turn the most mundane or misunderstood ingredients into delicious, edible works of art. The results are a feast for the eyes and the palate. Be sure to explore the divine courtyard - weather, and season permitting.QC‑4, Pühavaimu 13/15, tel. +372 699 77 80, www.stenhusrestaurant.ee. Open 12:00-23:00. Break‑ fast 07:00 - 10:30. €€€. PXBISJ6Wi Vanaema Juures True to its name, Grandma’s Place treats its guests to a warm welcome and a cosy dining room filled with antiques. Take heart that there’s no sign of the big, bad wolf here, though wild boar is occasionally on the menu. Elk roast is a regular feature and Grandmother’s Sunday roast come highly recommended. Reservations are a good idea for Friday and Saturday evenings.QB‑5, Rataskaevu 10/12, tel. +372 626 90 80, www.vonkrahl.ee/vanaemajuures/. Open 12:0022:00. €€. TBSJ facebook.com/TallinnInYourPocket
October - November 2019
This area is located in section C-5 on the Old Town map. Turn to page 95 for the full list of shops and details.
Map data © OpenStreetMap contribut
KARJA QUARTER LUXURY SHOPPING DISTRICT
Valli 4 MON - FRI 10:00 - 20:00, SAT 10:00 - 19:00, SUN 11:00 - 17:00 From November MON - FRI 10:00 - 19:00, SUN 11:00 - 17:00
Suur-Karja 23 & Väike-Karja 12 OPEN 10:00 - 19:00, SAT 11:00 - 17:00, SUN 11:00 - 16:00
Pärnu mnt.12 / Suur-Karja 20 MON - FRI 10:00 - 19:00, SAT 11:00 - 17:00, SUN 11:00 - 16:00
Harju 6 MON - FRI 10:00 - 19:00, SAT 11:00 - 17:00, SUN 11:00 - 16:00
Väike-Karja 7 MON - FRI 10:00 - 19:00, SAT 11:00 - 18:00, SUN 11:00 - 16:00
New Nordic Being a northern country, the Estonian restaurant scene has certainly been influenced by the New Nordic and Nordic Islands’ cuisine. Local ingredients are used, when possible, but each menu reflects the chef’s own vision and interpretation of the movement, leaving the diner with a true feast for the senses. Ö Despite being named for one of Estonia’s hardest-to-pronounce vowels, Ö is well worth seeking out. The atmosphere of stylish, charcoal-coloured furniture, with dove-wing chandeliers overhead add an artistic touch. The equally fashionable menu, prepared by chefs Martin Meikas and Ranno Paukson, is inventive and modern with emphasis on the use of local ingredients. Here you can find mouth-watering moose dishes, home-made reductions and fresh seasonal fish.QD‑4, Mere pst. 6e, tel. +372 661 61 50, www.restoran-o.ee. Open 18:00-23:00; closed Mon, Tue, Sun. €€€€. SW Rae Meierei Located inside and upstairs of the Beer House (see page World Cuisine category, p.66) is where you’ll find Rae Meierei. (In fact, we got a little lost looking for it). But, once you’ve found it, you’ll be glad you did. The restaurant specialises in fresh cow’s milk cheeses like mozzarella, ricotta, stracciatella, and burrata, which are all produced on-site in their own dairy. The main dining hall is stunning, with multi-levels and a large open kitchen stretching one side of the room and bar that looks a bit like a experimental laboratory on the other. In addition to their lovely cheese, we quite liked the spring chicken.QB‑5, Dunkri 5, tel. +372 53 43 83 66, www.raemeierei.ee. Open Wed, Thu 17:00-24:00; Fri 15:00-24:00; Sat 12:00-24:00; Sun 12:0023:00; closed Mon, Tue. €€€. PBJW Restaurant 100 Located in Centennial Hotel, 100 is headed up by one of Estonia’s acclaimed chefs and this is evident by the artistically pleasing and tasty offerings that come out of the kitchen. Locally sourced ingredients dominate here, but the style and flair are decidedly international with just the right amount of refined, Nordic flare. Their daily business lunch specials are a cut above the average while not breaking the bank, and they also offer a great little lounge menu.QJ‑8, Endla 15, tel. +372 52 Tallinn In Your Pocket
647 47 33, www.resto100.ee. Open 07:00-22:00; Sun, Sat 07:30-22:30. €€€. PUIS6W SÖE Set in the historic Three Sisters Hotel, this fine-dining establishment brings Nordic/Nouveau Estonian cuisine to the next level. Owned and operated by a decorated young chef, and a high energy, well-credentialed sparkle of a human being their combined attention to detail and commitment to perfection is admirable. ‘Coal’ offers up wonderfully prepared cuisine inspired by the Estonian nature, the fresh local ingredients are truly satisfying and appreciated. Head chef Pavel Gurjanov, his excellent team, their love for food, and all the elements that go into executing and presenting their masterful dishes is quite evident. The ambience is also befittingly elegant - modern and bright, and leaves guests feeling comfortable dressed to the nines, or dressed down. Eating here is not so much about satisfying ones hunger, it’s an adventure for all five senses.QC‑3, Pikk 71/ Tolli 2, tel. +372 630 63 55, www. soerestoran.ee. Open 12:00-15:00;17:00-22:30. Breakfast 07:00 - 12:00, Sat, Sun 08:00 - 12:00. €€€€. PUBJW Sume Sume is headed up by chef Heidi Pinnak, who represented Estonia at the 2013 Bocuse d’Or cooking competition. Her menu features classic European dishes to which she’s added her own little twist. During the week, enjoy a lunch menu that changes weekly, as well as a nightly dinner buffet, and Sunday brunch. QE‑5, Laikmaa 5, tel. +372 630 08 18, www. tallinkhotels.com/et/tallink-city-hotel/restaurant-sume. Open 12:00-23:00. €€€. PTUSWi Von Krahli Aed If you’re looking to please many diners with diverse diets, Von Krahli Aed is the place to come. Located in a cosy and romantic medieval building in the Old Town, the “Garden” is a not a vegetarian restaurant, but the focus of the menu is certainly on vegetables. All dishes can be ordered with or without meat. Ingredients are local and organic, including the wines. Service is always friendly and attentive. We’ll certainly be back again.QB‑5, Rataskaevu 8, tel. +372 58 59 38 39, www.vonkrahl.ee/en/von-krahli-aed/. Open 12:00-24:00; Sun 12:00-23:00. €€. BSVJ6W tallinn.inyourpocket.com
every day 18–21
American Route 13 Grill This American-style restaurant/night-spot is certainly aiming to become the best eatery in its class in Tallinn. We’ve actually had some good conversations with the owners and they’re quite committed to getting everything just right in order to make this the best ‘American-style’ locale in Estonia. From what we’ve experienced so far, ‘Route 13’ just might become a lucky number. We quite enjoyed their burger last time we stopped by and the wings had just the right amount of bite.Q C‑5, Suur-Karja 13, tel. +372 680 76 17. Open 11:00-05:00. €€. XB J W Texas Honky Tonk & Cantina Beer ads, steer horns, cactus and rowdy conversation - this bar screams ‘Texas’ so loud you might think you’ve walked into one of those old roadhouse movies. Thankfully the ambience is more rock and blues than twangy two-step. The long menu is mostly U.S. -style Tex-Mex (nachos, quesadillas, etc) with other things like hot wings, Texas potato salad and a decent selection of vegetarian items thrown in. Not all dishes are as authentic as the Alamo, but enough are to make this a decent destination for homesick Yanks. QC‑4, Pikk 43, tel. +372 631 17 55, www.texas.ee. Open 12:00-23:00; Fri, Sat 12:00-24:00. €€€. BI SJ 6 W facebook.com/TallinnInYourPocket
October - November 2019
Restaurants furnishings make it a place to linger over your meal. The sophisticated East meets West style also extends to the menu, offering a wide selection of innovative, carefully prepared Indian and fusion dishes. Adventurous diners should pay particular attention to the meat selection. QC‑5, Vene 5, tel. +372 631 31 32, www.elevant.ee. Open 12:00-23:00. €€. BSVJ6W
Asian Sometimes you just want a bit of spice! Tallinn’s palate has really come a long way and here you’ll find a great mix of Chinese, Indian, Thai, and everything in between. Chedi Call it a swank, upscale restaurant with an Asian menu, or an Asian restaurant done up to the nines. In either case, what you’ll get at Chedi is a sleek, novel dining experience that fuses East Asian and Western trends. This is where Jasmine tea smoked pork ribs meets Pike perch in Sanpei sauce, and the quality is always top-notch.QC‑4, Sulevimägi 1, tel. +372 646 16 76, www.chedi.ee. Open 12:00-23:00; Sun 13:00-22:00; Fri, Sat 12:00-24:00. €€€€. BSJ Dao Hua A hidden gem among Tallinn’s few authentic Chinese restaurants. The quality is excellent and the dishes, primarily from the Sichuan province, were authentic and extremely tasty. As they cater a lot to the local market, they tend to lessen the spice a little on some of the dishes which call for more heat. Just let them know, they’ll be happy to liven them up a bit for you, and or, offer you some authentic hotsauces so you can create your own inferno level. We’ll certainly be visiting them again.QK‑8, Mardi 1, tel. +372 660 60 17, www.daohua.ee. Open Sun, Tue, Wed 12:00-20:00; Thu, Fri, Sat 12:00-22:00; closed Mon. €€. PTSW new DimSum Food Club The DimSum Food Club serves up a few versions of this popular Chinese speciality. They do get a bit creative with their dumplings, many of which aren’t exactly Chinese in origin, mainly due to the various fillings in their dumplings - however, the selection we tried were quite tasty. This is actually more of an Asian fusion type place (which isn’t at all a bad thing), also serving miso soup, spring rolls, bao burgers, kimchi, wakame salad etc.QD‑6, Estonia pst. 9 (Solaris), tel. +372 55 54 45 60. Open 11:00-22:00. €€. PUS 6W Elevant This is an exceptional Old Town alternative to medieval theme restaurants. Beautiful décor from the entry foyer’s antique wrought iron staircase to the sparse earthy sheik 54 Tallinn In Your Pocket
Golden Dragon As a long-time favourite among Old Town’s local diners, this Asian restaurant receives mixed reviews in terms of food quality. However, we quite liked it when we visited their new location, so we’ll let you be the judge. The portion size of the spring rolls continue to be big enough to feed you and 1.3 billion of your closest friends. Stop by for the economical weekday lunch special, where the chef was quite liberal with his use of chillies.QC‑4, Pühavaimu 7, tel. +372 631 35 06, www.goldendragon.ee. Open 12:00-23:00. €€. TBISVJ Gotsu, Kyuho´s kitchen This little cellar place is a small hike from the centre, but for an authentic Korean experience it’s pretty much your best bet in Tallinn. Besides the main eating area they also have a traditional Korean dining room where guests are asked to remove their shoes when entering, (clean socks and fresh smelling feet would be highly recommended). Here you’ll be able to enjoy their succulent dumplings while on your knees. Dishes tend to be on the spicy side so please make your preference known when ordering.QJ‑8, Pärnu mnt. 62a, tel. +372 614 00 22, www.gotsu.ee. Open 12:0020:00; closed Sun, Sat. €. SV6W India 0 KM It’s pronounced ‘India Zero Kilometre’, perhaps referring to the locally-sourced ingredients, but we’d be willing to hike a kilometre for something else. To be fair, this is meant to be Indian street food, served out of a bunkerlike structure in a parking lot skirting Old Town. Keep an eye out for economical weekday lunch specials (vegetarian included). While we loved the casual, friendly atmosphere, our food simply failed to wow.QD‑4, Aia 8, tel. +372 600 60 15, www.india0km.ee. Open Tue, Wed, Thu 11:00-23:00; Fri, Sat, Sun 13:00-23:00; closed Mon. BS J Tallinn Restaurant - Fine Chinese Cuisine Nestled just off Viru street, the focus here is on, but not exclusively, Sichuan cuisine - and at least according to us, offers some of the most delicious, and spice-laden of all the regional Chinese flavours. The atmosphere is both stylish and cosy, with a simple elegance not usually found in most Chinese eateries. The dishes, prepared by skilled chefs, are based on time-honoured recipes with unique spices, herbs, and other exclusively imported ingredients. Guests will be treated to, not merely a meal, but an exotic journey of flavours that awaken the senses. Lovely courtyard terrace in the warmer months. QC‑5, Viru 3, tel. +372 604 30 47. Open 11:00-22:00. BSJW tallinn.inyourpocket.com
Restaurants quick bite a woman, and has a personality all her own. We didn’t ask if they were the owner, Rob’s, ex-girlfriend’s names - some things are just best left a mystery. Delicious and invigorating smoothies, tasty quesadillas, amazing, handmade chilli jalapeno poppers and a bunch of tortillas also round out the menu. If you happen to feel especially brave, make sure to order a spicy ‘Rob Shot’, it’s Legen (wait for it) dary.QB‑5, Vana-Posti 2, tel. +372 55 61 16 11. Open 12:00-23:00; Fri, Sat 12:00-04:00; Sun 12:00-20:00. SJ Fafa’s The Finnish falafel chain Fafa’s is in Tallinn now. Serving up fresh Middle Eastern-inspired cuisine, it’s a great option for a quick and healthy bite, with plenty of veggie and meat options.QD‑4, Viru väljak 4 (Viru Centre), tel. +372 680 92 82, www.fafas.ee. Open 11:00-21:00. US If you’re looking for something fast, Tallinn has a few places to satisfy the munchies. Although we neither condone nor support eating junk food - not all the fast food options available in Tallinn are overly junky. new Baojaam What started as a small street food stall at the Baltic Station Market, now has a full location in the Old Town. Their new location has a more extensive menu than the food stall, but equally as tasty. For those that had never tried a bao, it’s a fluffy steamed bun filled with anything you could imagine, and the guys at Baojaam are quite inventive. We quite liked the sticky wings and the kataifi shrimp bao, and we’ll certainly be back to try more. QD‑5, Müürivahe 50. Open 12:00-22:00; Sun 12:0018:00. Also at: A-3, Kopli 1 (Balti Jaam Market). Open 11:00 - 20:00, Sun 11:00 - 18:00. €. SJ Damak Döner & Kebab Now with several locations, Damak pleasantly surprised our discerning tastebuds. The ‘Pita Kebab’ is the best we’ve ever had in Tallinn, and unlike most kebab places in town they actually offer a yogurt-garlic sauce, alongside a few others. Authentic Turkish baklava, pitas made in-house and reasonable prices help to make this the top destination for kebabs, and more, in the city.QE‑6, Kau‑ bamaja 6, tel. +372 57 57 09 42, www.damakkebab. ee. Open 11:00 - 22:00. Fri, Sat 11:00 - 24:00, Sun 12:00 - 22:00. Also at: Akadeemia tee 5. €. SW Elli’s vrapikohvik This great and cosy little eatery serves up wraps, and appetisers with warmth, and a certain flair - unique in Tallinn. Fresh ingredients cool combinations, and some great comfort foods as well. Each wrap is named after facebook.com/TallinnInYourPocket
Hesburger Finland’s burger empire has done its home town of Turku proud. Heavy emphasis on heavy mayonnaise. QD‑5, Viru 27a, www.hesburger.ee. Open 09:0023:00; Fri, Sat 09:00-06:00. Also at: C-4, Viru väljak 4 (Viru Centre), email@example.com. Open 09:00 - 23:00, Fri, Sat 09:00 - 06:00. SJ Square Kebab This may or may not be the best kebab place in town depending on whom and when you ask, or what your definition of a good kebab place happens to be. Regardless of that, they certainly have a huge selection of things that you can eat alongside kebab meat, freshly made pizzas, a kebab calzone and a decently priced lunch buffet. All in all, not a bad choice for a fast food munchie fix.QB‑6, Vabaduse väljak 9 (in tunnel), tel. +372 699 95 50, www.squarekebab.ee. Open 11:0022:00; Sun, Sat 12:00-22:00. SL Subway This healthier fast food alternative to your typical ‘burgers and fries’ joint, is certainly a welcome addition to the Tallinn dining scene. You choose the type of bun-bread you want, toasted or not, you choose the style of sub and lastly you get to pick the toppings and sauces. It’s as simple as that. This location happens to be the most stylish Subway we’ve ever eaten at and practically every table has a place to plug in your laptop or tablet. In terms of the overall experience it comes pretty close to what you’ll find in North America.QD‑6, Estonia pst. 7, tel. +372 607 00 27, www.subway.com. Open 07:0023:00; Sun 09:00-23:00; Fri 07:00-24:00; Sat 09:0024:00. Also at: G-4, Narva mnt. 5 (Foorum Centre), tel. (+372) 671 77 13. Open 08:00 - 23:00, Fri 08:00 - 24:00, Sat 10:00 - 24:00, Sun 10:00 - 21:00. €. PSV6W October - November 2019
Restaurants Fine dining Looking for a romantic night out or a truly exquisite dining experience? These places are worth the splurge. 180° by Matthias Diether If you’re looking for a truly exquisite dining experience, may we suggest a table at 108°, or more specifically, at their Chef’s Table? Located in the historical area of Port Noblessner, the Chef’s Table seats up to 10 people around the open kitchen in the centre of the restaurant. You can watch the ‘kitchen stage’ while a six-course tasting menu, created by Michelin starred chef Matthias Diether and his team, is prepared and served. Alternatively, you can book a regular table and choose between a six- or four-course tasting menu. And be sure to opt for the wine pairing. The menu is internationally-inspired, using innovative techniques and the best produce Estonia has to offer. The food is truly a feast for the senses. Dinners last from 2.5-3.5 hours, depending on the number of courses. Bookings recommended.QJ‑6, Staapli 4, tel. +372 661 01 80, www.180degrees.ee. Open 18:0023:00; closed Mon, Sun. €€€€. PUILW
180° by Matthias Diether
Art Priori From the moment you step through the door at Art Priori you’re in for a treat. With paintings from the 15th Century hanging on the walls to the modern fixtures, the style here blends contemporary with classic and the attention to detail is truly satisfying. Many upscale restaurants tend to leave you feeling that you really didn’t get enough value for the money, however, this isn’t one of them. From the copious amounts of home-made bread (with spiced butter), complimentary pate, the unique presentation of all menu items and their excellent service - this restaurant truly stands out in its category. Charcoal and ash seem to be a theme here and indeed it also adds to the unique earthiness of this finedining experience.QC‑4, Olevimägi 7, tel. +372 600 33 53, www.artpriori.ee. Open 12:00-15:00;17:00-23:00; Fri, Sat 12:00-15:00;17:00-24:00; closed Sun. €€€€. PSJW Balthasar Beautifully-restored dining rooms in this historic building overlooking Town Hall Square provides Balthasar the perfect aristocratic setting for its refined establishment. It 56 Tallinn In Your Pocket
was here that Balthasar Russow wrote the famous ‘Livonian Chronicles’. The speciality of the house is garlic, and everything that can be made with it. The number of bulbs next to each menu item indicates the level of garlic in the dish. Not all dishes are heavily garlic-laden though, but a quick look at the dessert menu reveals... garlic ice cream’? Reservations are recommended.QC‑4, Raekoja plats 11, tel. +372 627 64 00, www.balthasar.ee. Open 12:0024:00. €€€. BEJW Dominic The historic Dominic has two different faces - an elegant ‘black & white’ café in the front and a luxurious restaurant in the back. The café is a great place to nibble on a slice of cake while enjoying a rich espresso or to even indulge in one of the light bites on offer. For a more formal experience, table cloth napkins and all, the restaurant might just fit the bill - and cost a few too.QC‑4, Vene 10, tel. +372 641 04 00, www.restoran.ee. Open 12:00-24:00; Sun 12:00-21:00. €€€. XBJ6W Gloria Gloria has been synonymous with class and style since it opened in 1937, and once you get a look at the intricate, pre-war interior, you’ll understand why this was the restaurant of choice for the Pope and several visiting heads of state. In case you need more convincing, Condé Nast named Gloria one of the world’s 100 best. We found our meal here a relaxing, well-orchistrated experience.QC‑6, Müürivahe 2, tel. +372 640 68 00, www.gloria.ee. Open 17:30-23:30; closed Sun. €€€€. SJ Nero The best way to describe restaurant Nero is to say “modern classic”. In developing the á la carte menu, chef Virgo Lillepool has orchestrated his team to create the world’s classic culinary pearls in their own key, offering guests joy both in discovery and recognition. The 175-seat restaurant with its easy-to-move furniture, modern sound and video system, built-in stage and dance floor is the perfect place for events such as receptions, weddings, company parties and more. They also serve tasty breakfast and every Sunday welcome you to brunch.QE‑2, Sadama 11a, tel. +372 630 10 18, www.tallinkhotels.com/ tallink-spa-conference-hotel/restaurant-bar-nero. Open 12:00-23:00. €€€€. PUEW ORE Located in a stunning Old Town location with high arched stone ceilings, the atmosphere at ORE is intimate in the large dining hall. This is a meal you want to save for when you truly want to indulge. Start with a few of the “snacks” to whet the appetite and then move through the courses. The pan-fried veal sweetbreads are divine (if you’re into that sort of thing), and the hangar steak with onion-liquorice cream is a real treat. Vegetarians won’t be disappointed either with the selection of veggie dishes.QC‑3, Olevimägi 9, tel. +372 611 72 90, www.orerestoran. ee. Open 18:00-23:00; Fri 18:00-24:00; Sat 12:00-24:00; closed Mon, Sun. €€€. BJ6 tallinn.inyourpocket.com
Restaurants THE BEST STEAKS IN TOWN ENJOY! Black Angus beef is the best in the world for preparing real steaks. Special technologies of cultivation and forage of bull-calves gives it excellent marbling and unique taste. Steaks are prepared in unique chartcoal furnaces called Josper, made in Spain.
ON VAIN YKSI TODELLINEN STEAK HOUSE! Viru 22, Tallinn Tel. +372 661 5518 Eteläranta 14, Helsinki Tel: +358 (0) 50 4198 000 Splügenstrasse 2 CH-8002 Zürich www.steak.ee
Carnivores Craving beef? Tallinn has a fine selection of steak houses that know the difference between ‘rare’ and ‘medium’. Many serve imported meat from as far away as Australia and Argentina, but more and more, we’re starting to see local Estonian beef on the menu too. Goodwin The Steak House Goodwin has tried hard to be the best steakhouse in Tallinn and it probably is, even though it’s really the only one. The interior is rich and woody, the service is efficient and the imported cuts of beef are excellent. If a full-on beeffest is a little too heavy, you could always drop by during the week for their business lunch specials, but let’s be honest, is a big slab of beef ever ‘too much’.QC‑5, Viru 22, tel. +372 661 55 18, www.steak.ee/index_eng.html. Open 11:00-24:00. €€€. PBSVJ6W Meat & Wine At Meat & Wine they certainly take their meat seriously. Cooked in the premium ‘Josper’ oven, their aged beef comes all the way from Uruguay and the quality is certainly top-notch. If steak is not your thing though, they have a lot going on in the menu that should satisfy most appetites. Quite a decent selection of wines as well. Pretty much the only downside is that side-dishes cost extra. QC‑5, Väike - Karja 1, tel. +372 56 48 53 34, www. meatwine.ee. Open 12:00-23:00; Fri, Sat 12:00-02:00. €€€. PXBSJW facebook.com/TallinnInYourPocket
Mustan angus-rotuisen naudan liha on maailman paras vaihtoehto aidon aistin valmistamiseen. Liha on laidunmaan ja ruokinnan erikoisratkaisun ansiosta hyvin marmoroitunutta ja maultaan ainutlaatuinen. Liharuokamme valmistuvat ainutlaatuisissa espanjalaisissa Josper-hiiliuuneissa
Oliver The diligent, carved wooden waiter that once stood on Viru Street, has now moved in front of Oliver’s new location on Rataskaevu. Meaty items like entrecote and steak dominate the menu, but there is plenty more for other tastes. We’ve heard a few good reviews about the food and service as of late and the kids play area and eightpage children’s menu certainly make this a good stop for families.QB‑5, Rataskaevu 22, tel. +372 630 78 98, www. restaurantoliver.com. Open 11:00-22:00; Fri, Sat 11:0023:30; Sun 12:00-22:00. €€€. PTBSJW Steakhouse Liivi Even though the location has changed we have been assured that their overall level of service, atmosphere and menu haven’t - which could be either a good or a bad thing depending on what you’re looking for. The food, which reminded us more of a glorified pub meal is nothing fancy, nevertheless our steak was decent. Expect every possible sauce known to man, often containing peppercorns, slathered over a cut of beef.QD‑5, Viru väljak 2 (Metro Plaza), tel. +372 617 70 55, www.steakhouse.ee. Open 11:00-23:00. €€€. PXTUBS6W
PASTA I PIZZA I BAR CHECK IT OUT ON PAGE 60
October - November 2019
Restaurants international There are plenty of exciting dining experiences to be had in Tallinn. These are places where the chef plays with the ingredients and combines international cuisines to bring you something a little different. If you’re looking for a casual, yet memorable meal, look no further than this category! Allee Located inside Kalev Spa Hotel & Water Park, this sleek and modern restaurant offers beautiful views over the park and seating on a large outdoor terrace during warmer months. The internationally-inspired seasonal menu has something for both omnivores and herbivores. We quite enjoyed that herring ice cream and beef carpaccio. Be sure to leave room for dessert, too! A full breakfast menu is served until 11:00. QD‑4, Aia 18/ Kanuti 2, tel. +372 649 30 33, www.kalevspa.ee. Open 12:00-23:00; Sun 12:0021:00. €€€. PUBJW
Cru restoran Cru offers up the same quality and service that you would expect from a restaurant whose chef competed at the prestigious Bocuse d’Or competition in 2015. The interior is stylish, the cuisine creative and the staff are ready to serve you. Portions tend to be a little smaller than we personally would like, but perhaps the extra calories aren’t needed anyway. We did however compensate by ordering one of their excellent desserts.QC‑5, Viru 8, tel. +372 614 00 85, www. crurestoran.eu. Open 12:00-23:00. €€€. PBJW Emmeline & Otto Located just down the hill from Toompea in the von Stackelberg Hotel, this fine restaurant is suitable for groups, yet still intimate. It was named after von Stackelberg’s children Emmeline and Otto - they both loved good food and would often hang around the kitchen with the chef, especially Emmeline who would often even help out a little. Many of the ingredients and inspirations used in the menu reflect or indeed come from all across Estonia and are quite pleasing to the palate.QJ‑7, Toompuiestee 23, tel. +372 660 07 00, www.restoemmeline.ee. Open 12:0022:00; Fri, Sat 12:00-23:00. €€€. PUBI6W new Gurmee Garaaž This new Old Town dining and shopping complex will officially open its doors in October. Gurmee Garaaž will feature an Asian restaurant, seafood café and shop, wine bar, eco-conscious café and bakery, sushi bar, cocktail bar, and rooftop terrace, all into a historical Old Town building. QD‑4, Aia 10a, www.gurmeegaraaz.ee.
Charlie’s Corner Charlie’s Corner, located inside the ibis Tallinn Centre, offers casual dining. The menu covers all the basics salads, pizzas, burgers - with plenty of selection for vegetarians too. With a great selection of craft beer available, be sure to ask about beer pairing. Breakfast is served daily and a snack menu is available 24/7.QL‑8, Juhkentali 28 (ibis Tallinn Centre), tel. +372 699 44 99. Open 12:00-22:00. Breakfast 06:30 - 12:00. €€. PT U B S V L Wi
58 Tallinn In Your Pocket
Manna La Roosa Certainly the most interesting restaurant in Old Town, Manna La Roosa is housed in a historical apothecary and even the artworks and antique furniture is on the menu. With a celebrated chef as the creative force behind the international cuisine and a wacky artist in charge of the eclectic interior decorating - La Roosa literally brings a lot to the table. Needless to say, drinking or dining here is quite an adventure for pretty much all of your senses. Perfect spot for a great lunch, dinner with friends or to just simply enjoy some excellent cocktails.QD‑5, Vana-Viru 15, tel. +372 620 02 49, www.mannalaroosa.com. Open Sun 12:00-22:00; Mon, Tue 12:00-24:00; Wed, Thu 12:00-01:00; Fri, Sat 12:00-03:00. €€€. BJ6 Parrot MiniBar Parrot MiniBar is probably one of the funkiest places you can find in Tallinn. This award-winning restaurant and lounge will surprise you with its eclectic jungle decor, secret cocktail nights, and small bites that will leave you only wanting more. Pick and choose from the menu or for the full gastronomic experience, try their tasting menu for two. And be sure to stop in on Sundays for brunch.QC‑5, Vana-Posti 7, tel. +372 433 18 18. Open Tue, Wed 17:0024:00; Thu 17:00-01:00; Fri, Sat 17:00-02:00; Sun 12:0018:00; closed Mon. €€. BJ tallinn.inyourpocket.com
Restaurants Pegasus This stylish and trendy, multi-level restaurant has returned to its former home and generally, people have been pretty pleased with their experience here. We found the service to be top-notch, the cuisine fresh and creatively prepared and the atmosphere quite chic. We did think the portion sizes were perhaps a little on the light side, but this gives one a good excuse to sample a few of their offerings.QB‑5, Harju 1, tel. +372 662 30 13, www.restoranpegasus.ee. Open 12:00-22:00; Fri, Sat 12:00-23:00. €€€. BJ6 W Platz Everything old is new again - or at least in the Rotermanni Quarter it is. It’s here you’ll find this stylish yet elegant eatery nestled into an old, industrial limestone building. The artfully prepared cuisine, is an innovative and fresh fusion of European flavours using local ingredients whenever possible. The service is equally crisp but not too starchy. We quite enjoyed the duck breast and the crème brûlée on our last visit.QE‑4, Roseni 7, tel. +372 664 50 86, www. platz.ee. Open 11:30-23:00; Sun 11:30-22:00. €€. TB SV6WY R14 Veinirestoran Located in the trendy Rotermanni Quarter, R14 is a restaurant for wine lovers. The extensive wine list offers a wonderful selection of wines by the glass that have been expertly paired with their contemporary take on classic dishes. We liked the tuna salad with quail’s egg and fried green olives, and you can’t go wrong with a good steak either.QE‑4, Rotermanni 14, tel. +372 58 55 81 20, www. r14.ee. Open 11:00-23:00; Fri 11:00-24:00; Sat 12:0024:00; Sun 12:00-21:00. €€€. PUBS6W Rae Restoran Rae is a café/restaurant by day and a wine bar by night. Though any place with a location right on Town Hall Square might seem like a tourist trap, this one is worth visiting for its pleasant, antique-themed interior and excellent coffee. They also offer some quite decent meals, although the prices are a tad high in our opinion. Perhaps the greatest feature though is the location, especially in the warmer months when the terrace is open - the people watching will keep you occupied for hours.QC‑4, Raekoja plats 10, tel. +372 644 39 88, www.raerestoran. ee. Open 09:00-22:00; Fri, Sat 09:00-24:00; Sun 10:0022:00. €€€. BSJ6W Rataskaevu 16 The service, quality and cosy atmosphere here make it worth coming back to. The cuisine is fresh, imaginative and their home-made artisan bread is in a word - delicious. Personally we have a few other spots in and around Old Town that we prefer, however, they do hold the ‘number one’ spot on ‘Tripadvisor’ and have a prime location just opposite the ‘Cat’s Well’. Because of this we would advise making a reservation. They also have a second location around the corner, serving the exact same menu. All-infacebook.com/TallinnInYourPocket
fact #88 Estonia is among one of the top countries with the largest density of large wild animals in Europe. If you’re lucky, you might be able to see wolves, elk, deer, and brown bears. But, be careful when driving, as any one of these animals can run out on the road.
all a decent spot for a meal or for a romantic lite-bite and a nice glass of wine.QB‑5, Rataskaevu 16, tel. +372 642 40 25, www.rataskaevu16.ee. Open 12:00-23:00; Fri, Sat 12:00-24:00. Also at: C-2, Niguliste 6, tel. +372 601 13 11, firstname.lastname@example.org. Open 12:00 - 23:00, Fri, Sat 12:00 - 24:00. €€. PTBSJ6W Tabac This classic brasserie offers fabulous cocktails and a classic bistro menu. The interior is tastefully decorated with retro elegance and is a great spot for an evening drink or large meal. The menu changes often, always offering guests something new and exciting.QC‑5, Suur-Karja 4, tel. +372 600 22 20, www.tabac.ee. Open 17:00-24:00; Fri, Sat 17:00-02:00; closed Sun. €€€. PJ6W Tempo Resto & Bar Offering an international à la carte menu at all times, this restaurant is especially popular for its specialty buffets. On a cold day, it’s hard to go past an all-you-can-eat soup buffet. There are always at least four tasty soups to choose from, so take your time and enjoy. They also serve a breakfast and dinner buffet, and the newest addition - pancake Sundays every Sunday from 12:00 - 15:00. Visit their website for hours and prices.QE‑2, Sadama 9, tel. +372 667 87 52, www.tallinkhotels.com/tallink-express-hotel/ tempo. Open 11:30-23:00; Sun, Sat 12:00-23:00. €€. UW Vintage 17 “Small things, done well” might best describe this cosy haunt of Old Town fine dining. Venison carpaccio or sensational Asian tiger prawns might kick things off on the changing seasonal menu, followed by a delicate whitefish or more hearty duck confit and all washed down with something interesting from a really good wine list. Service is unobtrusively efficient, with a delicious bread choice or amuse-bouche likely to add to the fun. Understated comfort and a short but interesting menu complete one of the nicer Old Town haunts. QC‑5, Vene 6, tel. (+372) 666 05 08, www.vintage17.ee. Open 12:00-22:00; Fri, Sat 12:0024:00; closed Mon. €€€. BJW October - November 2019
Italian Due, perhaps in part, to the influx of Italian men who have seemingly migrated to Tallinn because of the rather endless supply of long-legged blondes, the city has a plethora eateries in this category. We’re not complaining though, both the food and the blondes are bella. Barrique Gastro Vinoteek Tucked away in a quiet courtyard off of Pikk Street, this cosy restaurant offers Italian cuisine paired with a carefully selected wine list. The pizzas have a wonderful light and crispy crust and are topped with the best ingredients brought straight from Italy. Be sure to save room for the basil crème brûlée and ask about their signature infused gin cocktails.QC‑4, Pikk 41/2, tel. +372 55 61 53 33, www.barrique.ee. Open 10:00-23:00. €€. BJW
Barrique Gastro Vinoteek
60 Tallinn In Your Pocket
Basiilik Pizza & Pasta Truly an unexpected find. Though not quite rivalling the best Italian cuisine in town, for a restaurant that’s in a giant cinema house, Basiilik is surprisingly high-quality. Soups, pastas and other mains are served by friendly staff in a nicer-than-average dining room. Crowds ebb and flow according to the film schedule and their all-you-can-eat, pizza and soup buffet times, which run Monday to Friday 11:30 - 15:00 for a mere €7.50.QE‑4, Hobujaama 5, tel. +372 56 50 99 91, www. basiilik.ee. Open 11:30-23:00; Sun 11:30-22:00. Café part open 09:00 - 23:00. Also at: L-8, Tartu mnt. 87, tel. +372 56 20 21 17. Open 11:00 - 22:00. €€. PBSV6Wi Da Rocco The sleek, yet cosy interior of this trattoria is inviting, especially with the fireplace crackling in the corner. When we visited, they had only just opened, and the menu seemed to be under development, but the friendly owner was keen to let us taste a few different dishes prepared by their Italian chef Rocco. What we did try did not disappoint, especially the beef carpaccio and fritto misto.QB‑4, Lai 6, tel. +372 56 27 11 77, www.darocco.ee. Open 12:3015:00;18:30-23:00; Sun 12:30-22:00; Sat 12:30-23:00; closed Mon. €€. J Gianni Think candlelight, champagne buckets and soft, swank modernity. A sophisticated, Italian restaurant like Gianni could pass muster anywhere in the world - this one just tallinn.inyourpocket.com
Restaurants happens to be in Tallinn, off Narva mnt. in the direction of the port. Our ricotta-filled ravioli was expertly-prepared. Those looking for a less involved experience can head to the attached Gianni Café.QL‑7, Jőe 4a, tel. +372 626 36 84, www.gianni.ee. Open 12:00-23:00; Sun 12:00-22:00. Café open 08:00 - 20:00, Sat 09:00 - 21:00, Sun 10:00 20:00. €€€. PBSL6Wi H7 H7’s Italian owners were missing the flavours of home and decided to bring those flavours to Tallinn. In addition to wine, cheese and charcuterie brought directly from Italy, and chosen by the owners themselves, the menu offers all of your Italian favourites, including pizza prepared in a wood-fired oven. Breakfast is served daily. In summer, be sure to enjoy your meal or drink outside on their large terrace where sun shines all day long. QB‑5, Harju 7, tel. +372 616 19 40, www.h7.ee. Open 11:30-23:30; Fri, Sat 11:30-01:00. €€. BSJ6Wi ZA GH PIZ RDOU T SOU S E B THE SOUL ALIAN AN IT WITH
VIRU 17 TALLINN OLD TOWN
pizza The great location and view at H7
La Bottega This restaurant is styled just like an upscale Italian ‘shop’ with shelves of wine and other delicacies stacked all the way to the very high ceiling. The menu boasts classic Italian dishes with a special emphasis on seafood and fish, inspired by the chef’s childhood in Sardinia. Service is friendly and the wine list offers a good selection of Italian wines.QC‑5, Vene 4, tel. +372 627 77 31, www. labottega.ee. Open 12:00-23:00; Sun 13:00-22:00; Fri, Sat 12:00-24:00. €€€. BSJ6W
Gourmet Pizza ‘Gourmet Club’, long synonymous with quality in Estonia, brings Italian-style sourdough pizza to the heart of Old Town. This cosy little café offers up delicious pies for a pittance. You’ll find some of the classics here, as well as creative combinations that will leave both your taste-buds and tummy satisfied. It all starts with the dough though, their special recipe is the foundation for all that pizza goodness - and the toppings, which come primarily from Italy, work together like a finely tuned operetta. Great coffee, the sweetest of bites, and smiling staff will urge you to come back for more.QD‑5, Viru 17, tel. +372 507 22 20, www.gourmetclub.ee. Open 10:00-20:00; Sun 10:00-19:00. BSJ Dodo Pizza This international pizza chain with the funky name actually serves up some pretty decent pan and thin-crust pizza. The interior is bright and high-tech, the menu is simple to use and the service fast and friendly. Each pizza comes in three sizes and an easy to use, to-scale diagram shows you exactly how big they are. Their lightning-fast delivery also fills a great void in Tallinn and you can even watch and track them making your pizza onlineQD‑6, Estonia pst. 7, tel. +372 629 92 09, www.dodopizza.ee. Open 09:00-23:00; Fri 09:0024:00; Sat 10:00-24:00; Sun 10:00-23:00. €€. SV
October - November 2019
Restaurants La Cucina Restaurant & Pizzeria Enjoy authentic Neapolitan wood-fired oven pizzas and other Italian favourites at this centrally-located hotel restaurant. In addition to the classics, be sure to try the Volcano burger with a black bread bun. Wash it all down with a glass of wine or beer from their extensive Italian drinks list. And if the weather allows, you can enjoy your meal on their summer terrace.QJ‑8, Endla 23 (Kreutzwald Ho‑ tel), tel. +372 666 48 17, www.lacucina.ee. Open 12:0022:00. €€€. PBSVW
La Cucina Restaurant & Pizzeria
SUUR-KARJA 2 - TEL.(+372) 56 22 96 91 - WWW.PULCINELLA.EE
Pulcinella Certainly a dining delight, this very authentic, Neapolitan cellar-restaurant pulls all the stops to give you the complete experience. Italian-owned and operated, they also feature a fresh, imported deli counter where one can find top-notch ingredients. We quite enjoyed the cosy, low-key Italian ambiance. The cuisine was also delightful and our pizza was one of the best we’ve had in Tallinn. There are so many layers to explore at Pulcinella and naturally it isn’t all pizza with them, they offer some other tasty and traditional dishes as well as a surprising array of seafood dishes inspired by the Tyrrhenian Sea.QC‑5, Suur-Karja 2, tel. +372 56 22 96 91, www.pulcinella.ee. Open 11:30-23:00; Fri, Sat 11:3024:00; Sun 11:30-22:00. €€€. PBSJW Vapiano Foorum Vapiano is a European chain of ‘fresh-casual’ concept restaurants where the tantalising food is prepared right before your very eyes. When you arrive at the door you’re greeted and given a plastic card, then proceed to the open kitchen area or bar where you can place your orders (pasta, salad/antipasti, pizza, drinks) and the items are charged to the card. The majority of mouth-watering food items are fresh and homemade. That’s right - fresh, pastas are dispatched quite quickly, the pizza doesn’t take too long either, but you’ll be given a pager that vibrates and blinks when your pizza is piping hot. The prices are delightfully affordable and the food – bella! QE‑4, Hobujaama 10, tel. +372 682 90 10, www.vapiano. ee. Open 11:00-23:00; Fri, Sat 11:00-24:00. Also at: D-6 Es‑ tonia pst. 9 (Solaris Centre), email@example.com, tel. 628 59 99. Open 11:00 - 23:00, Fri, Sat 11:00 - 24:00. Also at: M-8, Suur-Sõjamäe 4 (Ülemiste Centre), firstname.lastname@example.org, tel. 55 54 50 24. Open 10:00 - 21:00, Sat, Sun 10:00 - 23:00. €€. PTUBS6W
62 Tallinn In Your Pocket
Restaurants kadriorg area The restaurants listed here are located in the scenic Kadriorg district of Tallinn. Check out our ‘Sightseeing’ section to find out more.
Japanese Japanese restaurants offer so much more than just sushi (though there still are plenty of places for sushi). The ramen craze has certainly hit Tallinn, but there are also a few places specialising in regional cuisines that are certainly worth a visit. Haku This truly authentic Japanese restaurant, located near the US Embassy, is owned and managed by a Japanese chef and his Estonian wife (who also happens to be a Japanese trained sushi chef). The menu is compact and quite traditional - albeit with a certain modern flare and filled with all the tasty delicacies you might want to enjoy from a restaurant in this genre. Everything at Haku is down to the details, homemade soy sauce, fresh seafood and imported Japanese ingredients. Stepping into this eatery is like entering another world. In 2017, Haku won three Silverspoon prizes for Best International Restaurant, Best Chef and Best Service.QD‑7, Lätte 6, tel. +372 56 31 45 47, www.haku. ee. Open 17:00-22:30; closed Mon, Sun. Reservation is highly recommended. NB! Restaurant is closed Novem‑ ber 2 - 18. €€. BISV6 Sushi Plaza A short walk from Viru Keskus will find you at this sushi bar - the relaxed atmosphere and price per portion ratio is certainly to be commended and the quality of their various offerings is generally quite good. Their menu consists primarily of various maki rolls, but they also offer a few nigiris, as well as a some traditional soups including the ever popular miso varieties.QK‑7, Narva mnt. 6, tel. +372 53 33 26 99, www.sushiplaza.ee. Open 11:00-22:00; Fri, Sat 11:00-23:00; Sun 12:00-21:00. Also at: C-5, Viru 13/15 (4th floor of De La Gardie building). Open 12:00 - 23:00, Fri 12:00 - 24:00, Sat 15:00 - 24:00, Sun 15:00 - 23:00. €€. PSV6W Washoku Story What started as a supper club of sorts in the owner/chef’s own home, has now turned into Hide’s dream, a casual Japanese restaurant in the heart of the city. The menu offers a large selection of traditional Japanese dishes, as well as a wide range of Japanese drinks. Enjoy a lunch menu on weekdays from 12:00 to 15:00.QD‑3, Poordi 3, tel. +372 661 26 22, www.washoku-story.ee. Open 12:00-22:00. €€. PBSV6W facebook.com/TallinnInYourPocket
Mantel ja Korsten Named after the mantle chimney in the middle of this quaint wooden house in Kadriorg, Mantel ja Korsten is the place to come if you’re looking for a casual, yet delicious meal. The Mediterranean-inspired menu changes seasonally, and the expertly-chosen wine list compliments the menu well. We quite enjoyed the grilled steak and the homemade seafood pasta. But, to be honest, everything looked quite good. There’s no seating outside for the warmer months, but you can request to book the table inside the mantle chimney. L‑7, Poska 19a, tel. +327 665 95 55, www.mantel-korsten.ee. Open 12:0015:00;17:30-23:00; Sat 12:00-23:00; closed Mon, Sun. €€€. PT I S V 6 W Mon Repos What was once a very chic restaurant/casino back in the 1920s, has now been completely renovated and reopened as a restaurant led by chef Vladislav Djatšuk. The beautifully refurbished interior is sleek, yet cosy. The menu is inspired by historic recipes that Djatšuk has recreated with a modern twist. We particularly liked the paté with green apple jelly and the grilled romaine salad with bone marrow vinaigrette. The degustation hall is open upstairs from Thursday to Saturday.QM‑7, Narva mnt. 92, tel. +372 507 02 73, www.monrepos.ee. Open 12:00-23:00; Fri, Sat 12:00-24:00; Sun 12:00-21:00. €€€. PT B I LW RADIO With a growing number of restaurants in the area, Radio is one of the latest additions. This modern space with an open kitchen is stylishly decorated. The menu features seasonal dishes using top quality ingredients. Check their Facebook page for weekday lunch specials. QL‑7, Terase 16, tel. +372 550 44 99, www.restoranradio.ee. Open 12:00-14:30;17:0023:00; Sat 17:00-23:00; closed Mon, Sun. Salt Located just outside of Kadriorg, Salt is a friendly place where the dishes are not only pleasing to the eye - but also to the palate. Each plate here is a little piece of art and combines fresh, often locally grown, ingredients with a certain amount of imagination. QL‑7, Vase 14/Faehlmanni 15, tel. +372 518 85 10, www.saltrestoran.ee. Open 12:00-14:00;17:0022:30; Sat 17:00-22:30; closed Sun, Mon. €€. TB S 6 October - November 2019
Restaurants fact #89 Estonians love foraging for mushrooms, and many know how to identify several types. Make sure you know your mushrooms before you eat them. Estonia is home to one of the world’s most poisonous mushrooms, the white and green death cap, which resembles several edible mushrooms.
Mexican There’s nothing like a good taco to cure the munchies. In Tallinn, you’ll find many interpretations, with some chefs even making their own tortillas. Amarillo Located on the ground floor of the Sokos Viru Hotel, bright, friendly colours, hot (spicy) food, and a professional demeanour greet you at Amarillo. Other ‘Yankee’ choices such as burgers are also present, alongside the classics such as quesadillas and sizzling fajitas. The vast dining area, large menu, and kid’s play corner make this restaurant a great choice for families - while two bars cater to an after-work or after shopping crowd, which often seems to be the case.QD‑5, Viru väljak 4, tel. +372 680 92 80, www.raflaamo.fi/en/tallinn/amarillo-viru-tallinn. Open 11:00-24:00; Fri, Sat 11:00-02:30. €€€. PUB S6W Ancho This eatery is right up there in terms of quality and they happen to care a lot about the end result - ie. tasty and rather authentic Mexican cuisine. If you have a hankering for this type of food then Ancho is probably your best bet. The jalapeño poppers were both crispy and juicy the last time we ‘popped’ in and the fajitas were very tasty. They also serve food late on Friday and Saturday nights which is a bonus when bar-hopping.QA‑2, Niine 11, tel. +372 53 89 89 26, www.ancho.ee. Open 12:00-23:00; Fri, Sat 12:00-02:00. €€. BS6W Taqueria - Tacos & Drinks Located in the Rotermann City industrial space, the atmosphere at this qausi-Mexican place is both cosy and interesting. While the menu isn’t huge, they feature a lot of the classics (tacos, quesadillas etc.), and all with various meaty fillings - some great veggie options for you herbivores too. We were thrilled with their hand-made and sufficiently caliente jalapeño poppers, they came with a rather tasty 64 Tallinn In Your Pocket
dipping sauce and even a drawn and quartered pineapple! Unfortunately we didn’t see any handmade tortillas while we were there, perhaps they’ll offer them in the future... hint, hint. Overall we very much enjoyed the experience - some delicious cocktails to suck back as well.QE‑4, Rotermanni 14, tel. +372 56 99 88 98, www.taqueria.ee. Open 11:45-22:00; Fri, Sat 11:45-01:00. BSW
Seafood For years, Tallinn was lacking in the seafood restaurant category, but all of that’s changed now. Enjoy fresh fish and shellfish any day of the week. Finlandia Caviar Tallinn What looks like a fancy shop from the outside, is actually a lovely little restaurant, perfect for an evening, or afternoon, of indulgence in Tallinn. It is, after all, a place for oysters, caviar, and champagne right in the heart of Tallinn. We tried two different kinds of oysters, which were served on a smoking platter. From Monday to Friday, you can enjoy a Gentleman’s Lunch of champagne and caviar from 11:00 - 15:00.QC‑5, Väike-Karja 1, tel. +372 53 83 89 59, www.finlandiacaviar.fi/en. Open 12:00-21:00; Fri, Sat 12:00-22:00; Sun 11:00-18:00. €€€. SJ
Seafood delicacies at Finlandia Caviar Tallinn
The Nautilus Comparisons with the Nautilus submarine, envisioned by writer Jules Verne, can certainly be made with this restaurant - one of the few that specialises in seafood here. The brass and dark stained wood interior, offset by curious and interesting sea-inspired elements encompass dining ‘passengers’ with an almost literary steam-punk flare. It’s all about the finer details. The menu, naturally, features seafood – yet, includes a fair amount of earthly delights. With a well-seasoned, albeit youthful Estonian chef at the helm, the cuisine is fresh, classic and creative at the same time. Local and seasonal ingredients are evident, however, Nautilus gathers the finest of fare from around the globe to ensure quality and freshness in every bite.QC‑4, Pikk 36 / Olevimägi 5, tel. +372 57 80 77 77. Open 12:00 - 23:00. Fri, Sat 12:00 - 24:00. €€€. J tallinn.inyourpocket.com
Restaurants gastropubs Craft beers, signature cocktails, and gourmet pub fare are what you’ll find at Tallinn’s gastropubs. Clayhills Gastropub The first of its kind in Estonia, Clayhills Gastropub has raised the bar high. With executive chef Zvaonekwa (Zvaon) Chamunokara at the kitchen’s helm, the fresh cuisine is more along the lines of a Michelin Star restaurant than that of a pub. Fortunately you won’t have to pay Michelin level prices. The rich interior is heavily garnished with leather and the cellar is well stocked with quality beers and wines alike. The service also comes with a welcoming smile and the atmosphere is brimming with warmth. Situated in the heart of Old Town, Clayhills hosts a spacious outdoor terrace in the warmer months!QC‑4, Pikk 13, tel. +372 641 93 12, www.clayhills.ee. Open 10:00-01:00; Thu, Fri, Sat 10:00-02:00. €€. BE J6 W
Thai Thai food comes in many forms in Tallinn, from eclectic to fine dining to communal street food. Krua One of the few truly Thai places in the city, overall we quite liked our experience when we last paid them a visit. The food was fresh, the service helpful and the atmosphere of this little cellar eatery was cosy enough to settle in for a while. We particularly liked the crunchy, shrimp spring rolls.QD‑5, Vana-Viru 13/ Aia 4, tel. +372 646 26 13, www.krua.ee. Open 12:00-22:00. €€. PB SJ W Tai Boh More of an Asian fusion place than purely Thai, this restaurant slash lounge is funky to the point of being ‘über-kitsch’ and the opulent interior alone deserves a look. The menu items truly span the Asian world, featuring sushi, dim sum, spicy soups, chilly prawns and several duck dishes. They even have lobster and Kobe beef - both certainly a real treat for anyone who hasn’t tried them. The head chef hails from Thailand and has done a great job of creating dishes that please the eye as well as the most discerning of taste buds.QD‑5, Mere pst. 1, tel. +372 629 92 18, www.taiboh.com. Open 17:00-23:00; Sun 14:00-23:00; Fri, Sat 17:00-01:00. €€€. PB I J6 W facebook.com/TallinnInYourPocket
Frank Dedicated, we assume to ‘Ol’ Blue Eyes’, this culinary cocktail bar also doubles as a New York, Soho-style bistro - and they do offer up an extensive selection of drinks and cocktails served with class. Their menu offerings are also quite delectable and the prices rather reasonable. We particularly enjoyed the burger, of which they offer a few, but their soups and great vegetarian dishes are also definitely worth trying.QC‑5, Sauna 2, tel. +372 623 30 59, www.frankbistro.ee. Open 12:00-24:00; Wed, Thu, Fri, Sat 12:00-02:00. €€. BJ 6 W Saku Gastro Located in the ultra trendy Rotermanni Quarter, Saku Gastro is a slightly upscale casual restaurant, without the stiffness and prices one might expect in an eatery of this calibre. The former industrial space is large and airy, and even has a few tables outside for a warm summer evening. The menu offers a bit of everything, from Mexican to British to local cuisine, and where they can, they like to incorporate locally-sourced items into the dish. They offer a decent range of craft beers, alongside Saku’s own offerings. We quite enjoyed the fish & chips and the incredibly tasty Korean chicken wings.QE‑4, Rotermanni 14, tel. +372 604 04 10. Open 12:00-23:00; closed Mon, Sun. €€. PB S V 6 W
PASTA I PIZZA I BAR CHECK IT OUT ON PAGE 60
October - November 2019
Restaurants fact #90
Vegetarian & Vegan
This year marks 25 years since the MS Estonia ferry sank. Of the 989 passengers on board, only 138 were rescued alive. The exact reason for this tragic accident is yet to be determined.
Vegetarian and vegan foods has grown in popularity over the last few years, so much so that your veggie options are so much more than potatoes or dhal or veggie stir frys. You will find at least a few vegetarian/vegan options at most restaurants or even full menus at some of Tallinn’s vegan establishments.
medieval restaurants Maikrahv Named for the ‘May Count’ of Tallinn’s medieval days of yore, this respectable establishment hidden under Town Hall Square hints at old-style regality all the while providing a decidedly modern and down-to-earth dining experience that won’t bust your budget. The menu is international, dominated by fillets with a couple of pastas thrown in for good measure. Delicately prepared food and professional service made the experience come off without a hitch.QC‑4, Raekoja plats 8, tel. +372 55 51 45 17, www.maikrahv.ee. Open 12:00-24:00. €€€. PBESJ Olde Hansa Many frequent travellers would say that you haven’t really been to Tallinn unless you’ve visited Olde Hansa. This Mecca of mediaevalism in the heart of Old Town doesn’t just serve historically authentic fare made from carefully researched recipes, it provides guests with a whole experience using a combination of candlelight, waiters and waitresses in period costume and medieval background music. Chamber musicians round out the ambience every night of the week.QC‑5, Vana turg 1, tel. +372 627 90 20, www.oldehansa.com. Open 11:00-24:00. €€€€. UBIEJ6 Peppersack Peppersack makes wonderful use of the 15th-century building it calls home - both the vast main hall and the more intimate rooms further back exude comfy medieval-ness. The menu is European-based, with hearty dishes to satisfy any palate. The fresh, hot rolls are a nice touch. Every day around 20:30 there’s a theatrical sword fight in the main hall. Great terrace in the summer.QC‑5, Viru 2, tel. +372 646 68 00, www. peppersack.ee. Open 12:00-23:00; Fri, Sat 12:0024:00. €€€. PTBJ6WY
66 Tallinn In Your Pocket
Plant Plant’s owner and chef Cätlyn is on a mission to remedy the misconceptions about vegan food, and we’d say she’s doing a pretty good job. The menu is inspired by Cätlyn’s own childhood and family favourites, all vegan of course, and combines Estonian and international flavours to all her ‘plant food’. We’ll definitely be back!QB‑6, Rüütli 11, tel. +372 655 05 60, www.plantfood.ee. Open 12:00-23:00; Sun 12:00-21:00; closed Mon. BJ Vegan Inspiratsioon This little vegetarian and vegan café, of which there are very few in this primarily meat-eating city, offers up fresh and healthy dishes for those that prefer to stay away from carnivorous cuisines. Both the prices and staff are friendly as is the atmosphere. Also a great spot if you want the Old Town dining experience without the hustle and bustle of places closer to the main square.QC‑3, Lai 44, tel. +372 58 51 62 32, www.veganinspiratsioon.ee. Open 08:0023:00. €. PBSJ6W Vegan Restoran V Sure, V fills a niche, but people don’t come here just because it’s vegan, they come because it’s good. We found the service helpful, the medieval-meets-rustic décor charming and the prices friendly, especially for Old Town. It was the food itself we liked the best though, with inventive dishes like fishless fish burger with oven baked sweet potato that is surprisingly filling. Small and popular, so book a table in advance.QB‑5, Rataskaevu 12, tel. +372 626 90 87, www.veganrestoran.ee. Open 12:00-23:00; Fri, Sat 12:00-23:30. €. BSVJ6W
World Cuisines The international community is growing in Tallinn, which means a growing number of international restaurants to try. Argentiina Certainly worth the brief walk from Old Town, this well-established, popular and slightly swank restaurant where South American cooks grill slabs of steak and fish right within view of one of the dining areas is certainly a ‘cut above’ many other eateries in town. From the service to the kitchen staff, one gets the impression that everyone working here truly puts a lot of pride into what they do and it definitely shows in the end result. Prices are decent especially given the overall experience. We quite enjoyed our grilled rib-eye steak and home-made jalapeno poppers with a twist.QK‑8, tallinn.inyourpocket.com
Pärnu mnt. 37, tel. +372 660 51 77, www.argentiina. ee. Open 12:00-24:00. Also at: L-7, Lootsi 8, (+372) 66 05 178. Open 12:00 - 24:00. €€€. PX B S 6 W Beer House In keeping with its beer-drinking theme, the menu at Old Town’s only micro brewery lists three different kinds of sausages alongside all sorts of other foods that go great with beer - naturally pizza and some juicy grilled items are also available. The real reason to stop in though is the beer-hall ambience and the unpasteurised, home-made, living beers, which come in seven different varieties. If you’re a cheese gourmand, also check out Rae Meierei, next door (see review on page 52).QB‑5, Dunkri 5, tel. +372 58 19 06 70, www. beerhouse.ee. Open 12:00-24:00. €€€. PX B E JW Georgian Tavern Tbilisi This Old Town restaurant in Tallinn offers up a real taste of Georgia. The staff of this family restaurant are very welcoming, as is the atmosphere. You’ll find all the Georgian classics such as hinkali (meat dumplings), grilled sashlik (meat skewers) and our favourite, hatchapuri (melted cheese filled flat-bread) among many others. All dishes are prepared fresh so be prepared to wait a little for your food to arrive. Our only warning is that with all the mouth-watering offers on the menu, many including photos, you’ll be tempted facebook.com/TallinnInYourPocket
to bite off more than you can chew. So bring friends, order a few dishes and share them.QB‑5, Rüütli 18, tel. +372 742 28 28, www.tbilisi.ee. Open 12:00-23:00; Sun 12:00-22:00. €€. BI S J 6 W Schnitzel Haus Accordion-heavy pop hits, wooden beer hall tables and vaulted ceilings, come together to form this den of schnitzel. The menu consists mainly of... well - schnitzel and they will certainly have you yodelling. Just in case you’re not in the mood for a pounded-flat, breaded and fried meal, they’ve also got a few other meaty mains to choose from and a ‘Radler’ on the drink menu was also a plus.QB‑6, Rüütli 28/30, tel. +372 645 00 59, www.schnitzelhaus.ee. Open 12:00-24:00. Also at: B-2, Pikk 37, tel. (+372) 660 69 98. Open 12:00 - 23:00. €€. TB I S J 6 W Troika One of Tallinn’s must-see cellar restaurants, Troika wows its clientele with a cosy, old-style Russian décor and a singer who belts out folk songs from a balcony from time to time. (When choosing your table, you may want to consider just how close you want to be to this spectacle.) But the best thing about this place is the food - excellent bliny and pelmeni as well as a selection of traditional main courses. Great service. Book ahead. QC‑5, Raekoja plats 15, tel. +372 53 33 85 55, www. troika.ee. Open 11:00-23:00. €€€. XU B I J October - November 2019
Ranging from full on eateries, to quaint little coffee nooks that serve up a few pastries and cakes - Tallinn has a lot to offer if you're looking for a café. With our comprehensive list, we're sure you'll find the right one for you.
olates and the Town Hall Square location are other plusses, but be warned it can get crowded here.QC‑4, Saiakang 1, tel. +372 55 56 72 03, www.kohvik.ee. Open 08:0023:00; Fri, Sat 08:00-01:00. BSJWY
Maiasmokk Tallinn’s oldest café, the Sweet Tooth has been serving marzipan and other treats since it opened way back in 1864. Drop in for elaborate cakes, cheap coffee, and an amazing, pre-war interior. QC‑4, Pikk 16, tel. +372 646 40 79, www.kohvikmaiasmokk. ee. Open 08:00-21:00; Sun, Sat 09:00-21:00. SJ
The staple formula of a bunch of little, round tables and a pastry counter has served Tallinn well for years. It’s not that these places don’t have ambience - they do, but they’re more for grabbing a bite on the run than for settling in. Gustav Café If your in the mood for great cakes, pastries or an excellent cup of coffee - Gustav will probably satisfy your cravings. This nice little café at the bottom of the Solaris Centre treats their baked goods with serious respect and they try to put positive thoughts into everything that goes into their ovens. The staff are also quite friendly which certainly helps make a visit to Gustav an enjoyable experience.QD‑6, Estonia pst. 9 (Solaris Centre), tel. +372 672 27 22, www.gustavcafe. ee. Open 09:00-22:00. PUS6W
Pierre Chocolaterie People squeeze into this quaint, frilly, 19th-century style café for two reasons: One is that it has its own master Chocolatier who cooks up truffles from scratch, and the other is the unbeatably cosy atmosphere. Be warned that seats fill up fast and that during slow times they occasionally close a little early.QC‑5, Vene 6 (in the Masters Courtyard), tel. +372 641 80 61, www.pierre.ee. Open 10:00-22:00; Fri, Sat, Sun 09:00-22:00. BSJW Reval Café This rustic Old Town café invites you to stop in for a quick bite or relax with a good cup of coffee and a piece of cake. Their menu offers everything from warm meals to gelato. QC‑5, Vene 1, tel. +372 644 64 73, www.revalcafe.ee. Open 08:00-22:00; Mon 08:00-21:00; Fri, Sat 08:0023:00; Sun 08:30-21:00. €. UIESJ6W
Saiakang Saiakang is located in a narrow passageway connecting Pikk Street with Town Hall Square, where you can sit by the large windows and watch as people pass by. The café boasts a good selection of freshly-baked cakes and pastries as well as some great coffee.QC‑4, Saiakang 3, tel. +372 644 30 55. Open 09:00-20:00; Sun 10:00-18:00. €. PBSJ6W
Kehrwieder One of the best cafés in town for ambience, Kehrweider is a snug warren of cave-like stone rooms filled with quirky, old furniture. Excellent gourmet coffees, handmade choc-
Vanalinna Kohvik Divine cakes, delicious pastries and great coffee can be enjoyed in this popular Old Town café.QC‑5, Suur-Karja 3. Open 08:00-20:00; Sun 09:00-19:00. SJ
68 Tallinn In Your Pocket
Cafés Modern cafés Tallinn’s most en vogue cafés all offer full meals as well as the satisfaction that you’re with the ‘in’ crowd. These classy establishments are best for long chats with friends, romantic encounters and discussions about your next novel. August This tiny little café is both quaint and stylish. The menu features plenty of all-day breakfast dishes, as well as inventive appetisers and some great sandwiches. With excellent coffee, an airy atmosphere, and good service, this is a nice place to chill with a friend.QC‑5, Väike-Karja 5, tel. +372 508 60 22, www.kohvikaugust.ee. Open 09:00-23:00; Fri 09:00-02:00; Sat 11:00-02:00; Sun 11:00-21:00. €€. PB S J 6 Wi Bogapott Tucked into part of a medieval town wall on Toompea, the family-run Bogapott is a cosy, otherworldly hideaway. Fresh, flaky pastries and sandwiches are the speciality in this combination café, art shop and ceramics studio.QB‑5, Pikk jalg 9, tel. +372 631 31 81, www. bogapott.ee. Open 10:00-19:00. BI J W
Popular Cafe och Bar This centrally located, ‘popular’ locale offers a wide variety of light-eats, decent breakfasts and full meals, all prepared fresh and decently priced. Great spot for people watching, especially during the warmer months when their terrace opens. On weekend nights it turns into a loungy club of sorts, offering all the latest beats from genres we haven’t even heard of. Small ‘Hookah’ lounge in back as well.QD‑5, Vana-Viru 6, tel. +372 58 55 61 00. Open 09:00-01:00; Fri 09:00-03:00; Sat 10:00-03:00; Sun 10:00-01:00. €. BJ W Ruby Ruby, located in the Rotermann Quarter, is one of two kosher restaurants in Tallinn. We’re particularly excited about the bagels, although on the pricey side, are pretty great. Eat in or take away bagels, salads and various other bits and pieces. A good choice if you’re looking for something fast and fresh!QE‑4, Rotermanni 2, tel. +372 56 79 11 11. Open 08:00-20:00; Sun 09:0020:00; Fri 09:00-17:00; closed Sat. €.
Carmen Café Located in the Rotermann Quarter, this fairly stylish café seems to really like soup - in fact they offer two new soups daily. For all you ‘anti-soupers’, they have a wide range of pastries, gourmet sandwiches and decadent cakes as well. Breakfast is served all day and you can enjoy such classics as Eggs Benedict, Eggs Florentine, omelettes, and Carmen’s very own English Breakfast. QE‑4, Rotermanni 5, tel. +372 53 23 44 55. Open 08:00-19:00; Sun, Sat 10:00-19:00. Also at: C-6, Kent‑ manni 4, tel. +372 509 72 51. Open 08:00 - 15:00, Sat, Sun closed. €€. PB S 6 W
Loads of little bakeries and cafés around town churn out tempting pastries and provide coffee and tables to let you indulge on the spot. Here we have listed just a few that specialise in baked goods.
Kohvik Komeet This gem of a café located in the sparklingly modern Solaris centre has great views, fresh foods and above all, killer desserts. Did we mention the awesome desserts? Because if you come here you should really try some of their excellent desserts.QD‑6, Estonia pst. 9 (Solaris Centre), tel. +372 614 00 90, www.kohvikkomeet.ee. Open 11:0023:00; Sun 11:00-21:00. €€. PTUBS6W
RØST Leib & Kohv The spongy sourdough is something you’ll want to keep going back for at this bakery in Rotermanni Quarter. Enjoy a quick coffee from some of the best micro roasters in Tallinn and abroad, as well as tasty sandwiches and freshly baked pastries to eat in or take away.QE‑4, Rotermanni 14, tel. +372 56 22 32 39, www.rost.ee. Open 08:30-18:00; Sat 09:30-16:00; closed Sun. S
Must Puudel The Black Poodle is a funky, retro eatery with a heavy Soviet living-room feel and a cosy, retro atmosphere that seems to be its main draw. The fresh cuisine is kind of a blend between trendy and home-style, the prices won’t bankrupt you and there are even live entertainment events held some weekends. It certainly can get quite busy during the lunch rush and some evenings, just keep that in mind.QC‑5, Müürivahe 20, tel. +372 505 62 58. Open Mon, Tue 09:00-23:00; Wed 09:00-01:00; Thu, Fri, Sat 09:00-02:00; Sun 09:00-23:00. €. PB E S J6 Wi facebook.com/TallinnInYourPocket
Peppersack Café Located in a historical house in the heart of the Old Town, stop into Peppersack Café for some freshly baked pastries and a great cup of coffee.QC‑5, Viru 2, tel. +372 646 69 95, www.peppersack.ee. Open 09:00-17:00. PT B S J 6 W i
Rukis Attached to the popular Estonian restaurant Farm, enjoy a great selection of cakes and pastries, as well as Rukis’ own house-made black bread. In addition to the delectable baked goods, Rukis also offers hearty breakfast options, as well as a full menu throughout the day. QC‑5, Viru 11, tel. +372 517 32 61, www.rukis.ee. Open 08:0020:00. €€. PU B S J W
October - November 2019
One could get the impression that Estonians are hopeless party animals. For a town its size, Tallinn has a suspiciously high number of bars and nightclubs. But for foreign visitors, this just means there’s more variety on offer. This section is designed to help you pick the nightspot that suits your mood, whatever that may be. Please keep in mind that many of the bars, lounges and pubs we have listed also offer extensive menu’s and are usually open at noon - making some of them quite viable options for lunch or dinner.
SYMBOL key 6 Pets allowed
J Old Town location
U Facilities for the disabled
E Live music
X Smoking area
L Free parking
B Outside seating N Payment in cash only W Wifi
Y Tallinn Card partner
Get the In Your Pocket City Essentials app
Expat hangouts Whether or not you consider it a stamp of approval, these bars and pubs are where Tallinn’s expats, a fare share of locals that like to speak English and more than a few tourists, tend to congregate. Clayhills Gastropub Serving up gastronomical delights both by day and night, this is a great place to hang out in a relaxed atmosphere. Clayhills, situated in the heart of the Old Town offers up an excellent selection of local and imported beers, heart-warming and creative pub cuisine and a healthy dose of live music on weekends. If you’re looking for a more intimate experience, you can check out the cosy upstairs on the 2nd floor. Watch Tallinn pass you by from one of the window seats, or from the large outdoor terrace in the warmer months!QC‑4, Pikk 13, tel. +372 641 93 12, www.clayhills.ee. Open 10:00-01:00; Thu, Fri, Sat 10:0002:00. BEJ6W 70 Tallinn In Your Pocket
Nightlife how to toast in estonian If you want to get in good with the locals, it never hurts to learn how to toast in the national language. Luckily it’s fairly simple here: Estonians toast by clinking their glasses and saying ‘Terviseks’ (health). It’s crucial, however, that you look your drinking companion in the eye just as your glasses are clinking. If you miss this step, the toast doesn’t count and you’ll have to start all over! Mad Murphy’s Mad Murphy’s is everything you’d expect from an Irish Pub and a whole lot more. Featuring a well-ventilated smoking room, a dance-floor, more large-screens than you can shake a stick at and some fantastic live music on weekends, Murphy’s can certainly get quite ‘mad’ any night of the week. They also serve up an excellent variety of your favourite pub grub. Great selection of beers on tap. Murphy’s currently has a whiskey corner and one the largest selection of whiskeys in Estonia. A sampler menu also available for the whiskey connoisseur.QC‑4, Mündi 2, tel. +372 601 10 70. Open 10:00-04:00. XBEJW Nimeta Baar (The Pub with No Name) In case the flags hanging out front don’t give it away, Nimeta is the quintessential expat bar. At times it looks like something between a British stag party hangout and an expat boys’ club, but a good number of locals and traveller types make it more interesting, especially on weekends when DJs get people into the dancing mood. One of the best paces in the city to watch to watch live broadcast sports events on one of their many screens. If you’re into Indian cuisine they also offer some truly excellent curries for rather reasonable prices, and make sure to check out their daily dish during the week.QC‑5, Suur-Karja 4, tel. +372 641 15 15/(+372) 56 49 14 91, www.nimetabaar. ee. Open 09:00-03:00; Thu, Fri, Sat 09:00-05:00. Age restriction 18+. XUBJW
Bars & Pubs Assorted watering holes, each with its own style. Karja Kelder A well-loved Old Town pub with a more relaxed, local feel than its expat-oriented neighbours, Karja Kelder is definitely one to seek out. The variety of cheap beer (and food) makes it a hit, as do the occasional live bands. One caveat is that it gets crowded in the evening, necessitating a totalitarian coat-check policy.QC‑5, Väike-Karja 1, tel. +372 644 10 08, www.villemipubid.ee/karja-kelder. Open 11:00-24:00; Fri, Sat 11:00-01:00. ESJW Kompressor Students in particular seem to be drawn to this simple, unassuming bar with oversized tables and cheap drinks. facebook.com/TallinnInYourPocket
Kompressor is also locally famous for its excellent pancakes, which are both cheap and filling. Kitchen closes at 22:00.QB‑5, Rataskaevu 3, tel. +372 646 42 10, www.kompressorpub.ee. Open 11:00-23:00. NJ Labor Baar ‘Labor’ which means ‘lab’ in English is pretty much just that - they’ve got loads of experimental shooters on the menu, served in holders containing ten test tubes. If you’d prefer to sip your chemical concoctions, they also offer an explosion of other science-themed cocktails, certain to please any aspiring drunk, even you got an ‘F’ in chemistry. Spending too much time here could be hazardous to your health though. The lower level acts as a nightclub Wednesday through Saturday and entrance is free.QC‑5, Suur-Karja 10. Open 19:0006:00; Thu, Fri, Sat 17:00-06:00. Age restriction 18+. XJ W Pööbel Just at the bottom of the Toompea, away from Old Town, Pööbel certainly has all the makings to become a great bar. They’re definitely on the right track in terms of style and atmosphere - but they have a bit to go in terms of food and drinks. We’ll have to check back on them to see if these areas have improved. Seemingly quite geared towards Estonians.QJ‑7, Toompuiestee 16, tel. +372 601 77 70, www.poobel.ee. Open 12:0023:00; Sun, Mon 12:00-21:00; Fri, Sat 12:00-02:00. UB 6 W October - November 2019
Open mic Sundays Live Sports
Huge whiskey selection Weekly Live Music
Raekoja plats (Town Hall Square) MadMurphysIrishBar
Nightlife Route 13 Bar Restaurant by day and bar/nightclub after dark, this very lively locale is situated on Old Town’s main bar street. The atmosphere has an air of being a bit of a ‘meet market’ but that’s kind of the point. Lots of big screens so you can catch the latest premier league matches, special events, a dance floor, beautiful girls and live music kind of pull it altogether. If you have a hankering for some decent ‘Yankee-style’ food, their kitchen is also open late.QC‑5, Suur-Karja 13, tel. +372 680 76 17. Open Sun 12:00-03:00; Mon, Tue 11:00-03:00; Wed, Thu 11:00-04:00; Fri 11:00-06:00; Sat 12:00-06:00. XBJW Scotland Yard An absolute monster of a pub just outside Old Town, Scotland Yard earns praise for its quaint Victorian-library/police-department interior, which even includes toilets done up like electric chairs! It can get rather busy on weekend nights, so bring along some patience, grab a seat when you can and slam a few back before heading out to one of the numerous clubs in the area. Live music nights from Tuesday to Saturday.QD‑4, Mere pst. 6e, tel. +372 653 51 90, www.scotlandyard.ee. Open 12:00-24:00; Mon 12:00-23:00; Fri, Sat 12:00-02:00; Sun 12:00-23:00. Free admission. BEW Texas Honky Tonk & Cantina Respectably busy (but rarely packed) on a given Friday night, Tallinn’s Texas-style cantina is a casual place to knock back a corona while tapping your foot to the twangy country/rock or old blues played in the stereo. Monster portions of fries will kill even the worst munchies. QC‑4, Pikk 43, tel. +372 631 17 55, www.texas.ee. Open 12:00-24:00; Fri, Sat 12:00-01:00. BIESJ6W The Highlander The only Scottish pub in Tallinn, this intimate little cellar venue stocks the largest variety of Scottish beers and the largest selection of whiskeys in Estonia. If you have a hankering for some of Scotland’s favourite bar foods, you’ll also find them at the Highlander. Deep-fried ‘haggis-baws’, sausage rolls, scotch eggs and deep fried mars bars make this the right place if you’re planning on throwing your diet into a deep ‘loch’. Occasional live music on weekends and some excellent whiskey based cocktails and moonshine as well. ‘Lets get pissed!’.QC‑5, Kuninga 1, tel. +372 58 83 61 20. Open 17:00-03:00; Sun 12:0003:00; Fri, Sat 12:00-07:00; closed Mon. XBJW Ükskõik If you’re looking for some good, old-fashioned, chill fun then this ‘whatever’ bar has it going on. They don’t take themselves too seriously - but that’s kind of the point. This is a student dive-bar slash second living room and they serve up decently priced drinks, offer some cool events and most importantly just a great place to unwind. Afterall - not everyone is looking for something fancy, sometimes you just want a locale where you can do body shots off a girl you just met.QC‑4, Pikk 35, tel. +372 699 01 30. Open 18:00-04:00; Fri, Sat 18:00-05:00. SJ facebook.com/TallinnInYourPocket
artsy/underground The raw underbelly of Tallinn’s music and art scene will be appealing only to more adventurous travellers. Depeche Mode bar Vilnius has its Frank Zappa statue, so it’s only fair that Tallinn has this bar dedicated to Depeche Mode. For normal humans, this is just a friendly dive bar stuffed with fan memorabilia. But if you’re a true DM fan, this is all you ever wanted, all you ever needed.QB‑4, Voorimehe 4, tel. +372 631 43 08, www.depechemode.ee. Open 18:0002:00; closed Mon. Age restriction 18+. XEJW Levist väljas Tallinn’s most grotty, seedy and all-around diviest dive bar. Students, Rastafarians and rockers alike congregate in this medieval cellar bar known for cheap drinks and uninhibited fun. Levist is usually people’s last stop of the night after drinking heavily elsewhere.QC‑4, Olevimägi 12, tel. +372 504 60 48. Open 15:00-03:00; Fri, Sat 15:00-06:00. Age restriction 18+. NXEJ 6W Tartu bar Tartu bar is a stone cellar full of mismatched furniture and art nerds. Currently the bar has more of a focus on craft and interesting beers, so apparently they’ve stepped it up a couple of notches from the ‘cheap’ bottled beer venue they used to be. Regardless, it’s kind of a cool spot to hang out in, filled with all sorts of interesting characters. Expect live music on some nights and large selection of board games.QC‑4, Vaimu 1. Open 17:00-02:00; Fri, Sat 17:0003:00; Sun 09:00-03:00; closed Mon. XJ TUUM This tiny café-bar sandwiched between galleries has been a popular meeting place for artists and artsy types since 1935. While the café opens early for coffee and fresh pastries, don’t let the opening hours fool you. Come here in the evenings for some great snacks and a glass of wine or cocktail after a night at the theatre and enjoy jazz, soul and pop music as well.QC‑6, Vabaduse väljak 8, tel. +372 644 59 26, www.tuumcafe.ee. Open 07:30-23:00; Mon 07:30-21:00; Fri 07:30-24:00; Sat 10:00-24:00; Sun 10:00-21:00. BJ6W Valli Baar The Valli is definitely one Tallinn establishment you need to check out. Let’s just say that it is so full of ‘local colour’, it even had a documentary made about it. It’s also a well known fact that attractive blondes often head here for the house speciality ‘Millimallikas’ cocktail before trawling for men over at Club Hollywood. This bar undoubtedly makes it seem cool to be a dirty old man.QC‑5, Müürivahe 14, tel. +372 641 83 79. Open 12:00-02:00; Sun 12:00-24:00. EJ October - November 2019
Serving food all night! FB:highlandertallinn
Nightlife Beer bars A few years ago it was difficult to find beers of exceptional character or quality in Tallinn. A few individuals and establishments certainly changed that and now it’s actually hard to find a decent bar that doesn’t serve up great imports and local craft brews. Some however go the extra mile, if you happen to be a beer connoisseur check these places out. Beer Garden Although certainly a bit of a tourist place, catering primarily to groups of Finnish ‘day-trippers’, this ‘Bavarian-styled’ pub is quite nicely decorated and the food quality is rather decent for a locale of its genre and their burgers are quite excellent - just ask them to hold back a little on the sauce. Given the atmosphere though, we certainly felt that the the cuisine should have reflected the decor, merely in our opinion. Live music can be enjoyed on weekends. QD‑4, Aia 10 / Inseneri 1, tel. +372 688 00 13, www. beergarden.ee. Open 11:30-23:00; Fri, Sat 11:30-02:00. XBJW Beer House So, how much German oompah music can you stand? Just teasing, they do play other beer-drinking favourites as well. This enormous, old-fashioned, Bavarian-style beer hall is something of a landmark in Tallinn. That said, the sprawling restaurant just off Town Hall Square is also Old Town’s only micro brewery, serving seven very decent in -house varieties of live beer.QB‑5, Dunkri 5, tel. +372 644 22 22, www.beerhouse.ee. Open 12:00-24:00. PX BESJW BrewDog Tallinn Brewdog is perhaps one of the most famous craft-beer establishments in the world of brew. Now with a pub in Tallinn and located in a fantastic old industrial site, Brewdog continues to bring great brews to a larger audience. In addition to various merchandise they also offer signature Brewdog snacks and some warm and tasty flammkuchen made by their neighbour just a few doors down. You can also try the hot dogs from TapTap next door. You can find a few terrific beers from other producers on tap here as well. Truly a must visit for beer lovers.QE‑4, Rotermanni 2, tel. +372 557 97 87, www.brewdog.com/bars/global/ tallinn. Open 17:00-24:00; Thu, Fri, Sat 14:00-02:00; closed Sun. Age restriction 18+. B6W Brewery Beer Club Brewery offers a wide selection of different international beers, as well as a few of their own house-brewed ones on tap. The menu offers an international selection of everything from tacos to schnitzels to sliders. While the food and the service is hit or miss, if you’re looking for a place to watch football, you’ll no doubt find a seat.QB‑4, Pikk 1, tel. +372 631 36 31, www.brewery.ee. Open 11:0001:00; Thu, Fri, Sat 11:00-03:00. €€. PXBIJ 6W facebook.com/TallinnInYourPocket
Drink Bar & Grill Drink Bar & Grill offers a great selection of over 300 different beers, half of which are from Estonia, and 15 of which are on tap. On a typical evening you’ll find a lively bunch of patrons from all over the world; backpackers, locals and ex-pats all seem to congregate here. Whatever category you might fit into you’ll be sure to have feel at home here, imbibing in a ‘drink’ or otherwise.QC‑5, Väike-Karja 8, tel. +372 644 94 33. Open 12:00-23:00; Fri, Sat 12:00-02:00. BJ6W Hell Hunt If you just want to grab a beer with friends and avoid the tourist scene, Hell Hunt (The Gentle Wolf) is probably your best bet. An open, comfortable drinking establishment with a strong sense of style, it pulls in the locals by the droves with its no-nonsense atmosphere. While here, try the pub’s own brand of light and dark beers (brewed by Viru Õlu) or one of their other 130-140 beers. Decent, cheap food too.QC‑4, Pikk 39, tel. +372 681 83 33, www. hellhunt.ee. Open 12:00-02:00. XBIEJ6W Põrgu A great place to grab a decently prepared bite to eat or an interesting beer, Põrgu, or Hell in Estonian, is worth a visit. Ironically enough it’s situated in a cellar but we didn’t notice any roaring fire the last time we visited - unless of course you can call candle flames roaring. The real treat here is being able to choose from 15 draught beers and ciders as well as 200+ bottled beers. They have a good selection of Estonian micro-brews, as well as three of their very own house beers - the recipes were conceived by the owner. Every month they change one or two of their draught beers, just to shake it up a little.QB‑5, Rüütli 4, tel. +372 644 02 32, www.porgu.ee. Open 12:00-24:00; Fri, Sat 12:00-02:00; closed Sun. J
Get the In Your Pocket City Essentials app October - November 2019
Nightlife fact #91 Estonia is known for its e-government. One of the few things that can’t be done online is file for divorce. Everything else is so easy to complete online that you can file your income tax return in less than 10 minutes or register a new company in less than 5 minutes.
Cocktail bars Tallinn’s new nightlife trend will probably become a mainstay. There are so many of these lounge bars at the moment that we’ve chosen only to list our favourites. Some are stand-alone establishments and focus solely on beverages, both the classics and their signature cocktails can usually be had - while others also serve fairly tasty food. Botaanik You’ll want to book ahead if you plan to visit this trendy artisan cocktail bar. But, you’ll be glad you did. With only a few tables, Botaanik fills up quick. The cocktails are created focusing on “the incredible taste of plants”, with anything from wild fruit to moss. A perfect place to start your evening.QC‑3, Suurtüki 2, www.botaanik.ee. Open Thu, Fri, Sat 18:00-02:00; closed Mon, Tue, Wed, Sun. BJ6 W Butterfly Lounge When we were last here we got the distinct feeling that this lounge was geared primarily towards the ladies. Perhaps it was the pink-clad waiters, overall butterfly motif, frou-frou menu items and more cock... tails than you can shake a stick at that made us feel this way, but if you want to spend the evening hanging out with a harem of beautiful dames, this just might be the perfect place. Excellent service.QD‑5, Vana-Viru 13 / Aia 4, tel. +372 56 90 37 03, www.kokteilibaar.ee. Open Wed, Thu 12:00-02:00; Fri 12:00-03:00; Sat 15:00-03:00; closed Mon, Tue, Sun. Age restriction 18+. BEJ6W Frank Underground Brought to you by the creative minds who envisioned Frank Bistroo, just a few doors down, this is the quintessential cocktail bar - dimmed lights, but not too dark, richly upholstered leather booths, dark wooden accents and works of art from across the globe adorn the walls. Frank Underground brings the silver screen to life, only 76 Tallinn In Your Pocket
in technicolour, and if you spend some time here you’ll probably forget you’re even in modern-day Tallinn. At its heart though are the fantastic cocktails - both classic and newly imagined served up by mixologists who truly know their stuff.QC‑5, Sauna 2, tel. +372 623 30 59, www. frankbistro.ee. Open 18:00-02:00; closed Sun, Mon, Tue. BJ6W Lounge24 A full 90m above street level, the suave lounge on the Radisson Blu Sky Hotel’s 24th floor is ‘the’ place to come for light bites and drinks with a fantastic view. At night, the stylish, little lounge turns its lights down low, letting the cityscape fill the windows and creating a romantic mood. Creative cocktails, delightful appetisers and delicious meals, with an emphasis on locally-sourced ingredients, also make Lounge24 a great spot.QE‑6, Rävala pst. 3 (Radisson Blu Sky Hotel), tel. +372 682 34 24, www. radissonblu.com/skyhotel-tallinn/restaurants. Open 12:00-01:00; Thu, Fri, Sat 12:00-02:00. In September open 12:00 - 24:00, Fri, Sat 12:00 - 01:00. €€€. BW Sazerac They call themselves a ‘Bar & Grill’ but we didn’t happen to see any food when we last checked in. However, we did see and indeed drink a few fancy cocktails here. The drinks menu is rather extensive and the bartenders are more mixologists than mere beer-slingers. An artsy and stylish interior combined with creatively crafted drinks make this an excellent spot to start or end an evening.QC‑5, VäikeKarja 8, tel. +372 53 91 97 45. Open Fri, Sat 20:00-03:00; closed Sun, Mon, Tue, Wed, Thu. J Sessel Speakeasy bar Sessel is, well, special. Not your typical cocktail lounge, this nightspot is a mix of a trendy/artsy underground lounge, with a plethora of quirky retro fittings, a smattering of gaudy, lush furniture, and with just enough bling - yet not at all pretentious. It has the cosy feel of a second living room - if only your living room looked this nice, had a well stocked bar and bartenders that could whip you up the best vintage, and signature cocktails on a whim. They also host various special events each month including, intimate concerts, film nights, DJs, stand-up comedy shows, and open mic nights among other happenings. This is a place you’ll want to hang around at, if you can even manage to leave at all. QC‑3, Viru 3, tel. +372 55 94 84 94, www.sessel.ee. Open 18:00-02:00; Fri, Sat, Sun 18:0003:00. PEJ6W Sigmund Freud Bar This funky cocktail bar has received nothing but rave reviews, including from us. The talented bartenders are skilled in making inventive, as well as classic cocktails, all for a great price, considering the top quality. In addition to the great drinks, the atmosphere and the decor is fun, yet sophisticated. We’ll be back again soon.QC‑5, Sauna 8, tel. +372 53 50 33 60. Open 19:00-01:00; Fri, Sat 19:0003:00. Age restriction 18+ €€. J6W tallinn.inyourpocket.com
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Tabula Rasa This excellent cocktail lounge is filled with charm and style, classic and classy, yet modern with a few twists - certainly shaken, not stirred. Powered by the same creative force that brought Manna La Roosa and Tai Boh to the Tallinn dining and drinking scene, Tabula shares certain elements with both, yet has a sparkling personality all its own. It’s quite a bit about the cocktails here, however, the cuisine will also leave those wishing for a light or heavier bite satisfied in many ways. Whether you prefer yours tall, or short, neat or with ice – Tabula and her mixologists will hit you with their best shot.QB‑5, Rataskaevu 7, tel. +372 628 65 60, www.tabularasa.ee. Open 17:00-23:00; Fri, Sat 17:00-24:00. PBISJ6W Whisper Sister Everything about Whisper Sister screams speakeasy - the lack of signage, the small gold plaque on the door with a number to call to be let in, and a doorman that greets you and leads you down the red carpeted stairs. There’s bar, the ‘living room’, with a few tables, and then the large circular room with booth-like seating and smaller glass tables. Reservations are needed for every area, except for the bar, and if you get there by 21-22, you should still be able to find a seat. Try a speciality cocktail or some craft alcohol. We quite liked the G&T - Gin & Tea with matcha tea and creme de cacao.QC‑6, Pärnu mnt. 12, tel. +372 58 74 78 37. Open 19:00-01:00; Fri, Sat 19:0003:00. €€. JW facebook.com/TallinnInYourPocket
casinos Olympic Casino Olümpia Apart from their excellent service, they offer the newest slot-machines, Roulette, Blackjack, Oasis Poker, Russian Poker, Ultimate Texas and Baccarat among other games. The Olybet Sports Bar is also a new feature of the Olympic and you’re invited to enjoy their snazzy lounge where you can either take a break between gambling or just hang out with friends for a drink or three.QK‑8, Liivalaia 33 (Radisson Blu Hotel Olümpia), tel. +372 630 55 61, www.olympic-casino.com. Open 24hrs. Age restriction 21+. Also at: C-4, Vana-Viru 14. Open 24hrs. XW Olympic Park Casino Tallinn’s biggest, brightest, most complete and cutting-edge casino is the Olympic’s flagship branch at the Hilton Tallinn Park hotel. This massive complex promises Las Vegas style entertainment with one of the best cocktail bars in town, live entertainment at weekend, along with new slot machines, 14 game tables, as well as international poker tournaments.QL‑7, Fr. R. Kreutzwaldi 23 (Hilton Tallinn Park hotel), tel. +372 630 55 37, www.olympic-casino.com. Open 24hrs. Age restriction 21+. XW October - November 2019
Nightlife karaoke Due to Tallinn’s proximity to the karaoke-loving nation of Finland, there are quite a few karaoke spots to be found here. By no means have we listed all the possible karaoke venues, but here are a few that specialise in the art of personal embarrassment. Retroteek With over 100,000 songs to choose from and a great stage from which to sing them from, Retroteek is a favourite karaoke place for locals.QE‑6, Kaubamaja 8/ Rävala pst. 8, tel. +372 56 75 18 55. Open Tue, Wed, Thu 20:00-05:00; Fri, Sat 21:00-07:00; Sun 21:0003:00; closed Mon. Shamrock Shamrock is a favourite among Finnish, Russian and Scandinavian tourists looking for a night of cheap beer, good laughs and karaoke. Although technically Irish, don’t let the name fool you, its new digs, under Musumägi (Kissing Hill) in the Old Town bastion wall gives off a bit more of a sports bar vibe than an Irish one, but the late night parties continue and so does the multi-lingual karaoke.QD‑5, Valli 1, tel. +372 660 11 20. Open 10:00-02:00; Fri, Sat 10:00-04:00; closed Mon. J
Live entertainment Lots of pubs have weekend bands, but some places in particular are known as venues for live music. Café Amigo (see clubs) also pulls in some of Estonia’s best acts. Cathouse Located a little off the beaten track but not too far from the centre, is the largest and apparently the sexiest concert venue in the vicinity of Old Town. The music features mainly Russian bands and entertainers, and the crowd is a mix of Estonians and Russians with a handful of foreigners thrown into the mix. We found the atmosphere quite upscale, in fact they even have strict ‘face and style’ control - although they did let us in. See website for details.QK‑7, Tartu mnt. 17, tel. +372 655 77 00, www.cathouse.ee. X Comedy Estonia The ‘kids’ who brought laughter to Estonia, perform shows and host comedy events all around the country. In Tallinn they hold stand-up show at various locations around the city. These shows feature some great, up-and-coming international talent, as well as local comics and the hosts themselves, Louis & Karl. We quite enjoyed ourselves the last time we were there. The Tallinn stand-up night tends to draw quite the crowd, so get there early. They also frequently bring in some of the comedy world’s heavy-hitters at a larger venue in town. See website for upcoming shows and details.QD‑4, tel. +372 55 95 39 96, www.comedyestonia.com. 78 Tallinn In Your Pocket
Gruuv Lounge Brought to you by the same folks behind Patcave, their new venture comes in the form of a lounge. You can expect the same great parties and casual vibe, and don’t worry, they still have Beer Pong. Check their FB page for more information about upcoming events. QC‑7, Pärnu mnt. 19. Open Wed, Thu 21:00-01:00; Fri, Sat 21:00-06:00; closed Mon, Tue, Sun. XE 6W Helitehas Located a bit outside the centre of Tallinn, but not a deterrence if you happen to be interested in any of their concerts, special guest DJs or international acts - of which they have many. The crowd here totally depends on the programme schedule, but primarily caters to a younger audience. Make sure to check their web page for upcoming events before heading to this night destination.QJ‑8, Madara 22a, tel. +372 56 25 40 05, www.helitehas.ee. Open Fri, Sat 23:00-05:00; closed Mon, Tue, Wed, Thu, Sun. Admission €10. XUELW Philly Joe’s Jazz Club Who doesn’t love a great jazz club? From the relaxed, intimate atmosphere to the great music - it’s a night well spent. Don’t expect a bunch of fancy extras, just smooth grooves and well mixed cocktails. See website for events and details.QB‑6, Vabaduse väljak 10, www.phillyjoes. com. EJ tallinn.inyourpocket.com
CIGAR SHOP & LOUNGE & BAR
HAPPY CIGARS Lootsi 14 - 2, close to terminal D at Tallinn passenger harbour www.cigars.ee, email@example.com, phone +372 5559 3062 Happy Cigars Lounge
Rock club Tapper This rock club on the edge of Tallinn’s centre holds regular rock nights, loads of local and international concerts and live events. We hear this club fits like a well worn leather jacket drenched in Jack Daniels, we’ll let you see for yourselves. See website for details.QJ‑10, Pärnu mnt 158g, tel. +372 654 75 18, www.tapper.ee. SAUNd music bar Enjoy great cocktails at this cellar bar in the Old Town, along with live music, DJs and stand-up comedy. QC‑5, Sauna 10, tel. +372 56 25 40 05. Open 20:00-01:00; Fri, Sat 20:00-05:00; closed Mon, Sun. Age restriction 18+. EJ 6 W Von Krahli Baar The real name is ‘Von Krahli Baar’ but regulars just call it ‘Krahl.’ This down-to-earth pub attached to a local theatre is where Tallinn’s alternative bands come to play, and naturally the crowd tends towards students, hipsters and artsy types. Decent selection of snacks and salads as well.QB‑5, Rataskaevu 10, tel. +372 626 90 90, www. vonkrahl.ee/baar1. Open 12:00-01:00; Fri, Sat 12:0003:00. EJ W
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Happy Cigars Lounge
cigar lounges Happy Cigars Shop & Lounge This port-side cigar shop offers a wide range of Cubans and cigars from other countries. In addition to the smoking room, the spacious walk-in humidor lets you easily familiarise yourself with what’s on offer. Located in a century-old warehouse, you can also also enjoy coffee or a drink from bar, as well as some nice dishes. Tax-free sales are available to tourists living outside EU.QL‑6, Lootsi 14, tel. +372 55 59 30 62, www.cigars.ee. Open 10:00-18:00; Sun 11:0019:00; closed Mon. PXUB6W The Oak Lounge - Tallinn Owned by one of Estonia’s largest cigar distributors, this casual, Afro-Caribbean-style lounge with a large selection of whiskeys from around the globe, has comfy chairs and a warm sophisticated look. It’s a sensible place to stop for any number of the 200 types of Dominican, Nicaraguan, Honduran or cross blended cigars from the finest cigar manufacturers around the world. Friendly, professional service helps to make your time here a ‘full bodied’ experience. The Oak Lounge also has an extensive cigar and whiskey shop for those who would rather indulge back at the hotel or at home.QB‑5, Dunkri 2, tel. +372 644 56 47, www.theoaklounge.com. Open 10:00-01:00; Sun 12:00-22:00; Fri, Sat 10:00-02:00. XJW October - November 2019
Nightlife Club Baila This little dance club in the heart of Old Town certainly does its best to make their clients feel like they’re relaxing, or partying it up on a tropical island somewhere instead of the somewhat chilly streets of Tallinn. From the moment you enter the door you’re greeted by a tropical aquarium, Latin rhythms and an atmosphere painted in the colours of paradise, as well as the obligatory, large tropical plants one might expect. Even the practically all-blonde female serving staff are decked out in striped sailor-tops, just adding that extra something to the vibe. The cuisine is also ‘topical-getaway’ inspired and the music will make you want to shake your money-makers, or at the very least watch others shake theirs. A huge selection of signature cocktails as well.QC‑5, Sauna 1, tel. +372 641 04 60, www.bailabaila.ee. Open Fri, Sat 22:30-05:00. Closed Mon - Thu, Sun. XJW
Clubs Tallinn has quite a bit to offer on the club-scene. From tacky to cutting edge, you’ll certainly find something that fits your needs. The regular admittance age to most clubs is 18+, exceptions are listed at the end of our review. Barbar Rock club This rock club has received nothing but rave reviews from its growing loyal fanbase. Live rock and metal shows happen every Friday and Saturday, with other gigs and events happening throughout the week. Tickets are very reasonable, with prices usually starting at €6. In addition to great gigs and music, Barbar also offers a small food menu, as well as pool and darts for a small fee. Be sure to check their website for full programme details and exact ticket prices.QE‑6, Rävala pst. 8, tel. +372 58 51 81 84, www. barbarestonia.business.site. Open 17:00-02:00; Fri, Sat 17:00-04:00; closed Mon, Sun. E Café Amigo Surprisingly hip and happening for a hotel club, Amigo attracts a good mix of Finnish tourists and local party animals who tend to be slightly older than the typical club monkeys. The big draw here are the live rock and blues bands - the country’s best-loved names - that play here Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays. Before bands come one, DJs spin all your favorite pop dance hits from the 70s to nowadays, and always manage to fill the floor with a cross-generational crowd.QE‑5, Viru väljak 4, (Original Sokos Hotel Viru), tel. +372 680 93 80, www.amigo.ee. Open 22:00-04:00; Fri, Sat 22:00-05:00; closed Mon, Sun. Admission €7 - 10. Age restriction 21+. XUE W
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Club Hollywood If there’s one club in Tallinn that’s guaranteed to be jumping, it’s Hollywood. Located in a historical theatre, this melting-pot for tourists, and Tallinn’s young and youngat-heart party crowd, usually ends up being a full-house. Featuring loads of funky events as well as some great local and international djs on the decks, it’s hard not to get your groove on. Their VIP experience is excellent and they boast the largest video screen in Estonia - making a night out here a worthy expedition. Wednesday night is ladies night, i.e. free entrance for the fairer sex, which pretty much guarantees a good time for the lads as well. See website for full programme and VIP details.QC‑5, Vana-Posti 8, tel. +372 59 12 42 00, www.clubhollywood.ee. Open Wed, Thu 23:00-04:00; Fri, Sat 23:00-05:00; closed Sun, Mon, Tue. Admission €5 - 10. XEJY
Club Münt Münt, which means both mint and coin in Estonian, probably won’t leave your breath fresh and tasty but certainly will leave more coin in your pocket as they offer up €2 drinks. Expect all the grown-up fun that a place offering such cheap drinks has to offer and a healthy dose of girls wearing the amount of clothing a girl who can only afford tallinn.inyourpocket.com
Nightlife €2 drinks might be wearing.QC‑5, Müürivahe 22, www. clubmynt.eu. Open Wed, Thu 23:00-04:00; Fri, Sat 23:00-05:00. Closed Mon - Tue, Sun. Admission €7 - 9. J
Club Studio Young, hip and one helluva queue to get into the place kind of gives you the idea of what Studio is all about. Probably the most popular place at the moment for the 18-25 crowd, Studio actually pumps out some pretty quality music from genres most of us ‘old’ people have never heard of. If you enjoy a youthful and fun vibe, you’ll fit in just fine. QC‑5, Sauna 1, tel. +372 55 99 25 57, www.clubstudio. ee. Open Fri, Sat 24:00-05:00. Closed Mon - Thu, Sun. Admission €10. Age restriction 20+. XJW Klubi Teater Currently one of our favourites and one of the most interesting and elaborate clubs in Tallinn, Teater takes advantage of its location in an old theatre and certainly provides the club-goer with a theatrical experience. The décor is 1930’s-inspired, the large cigar lounge is a nice touch as are the ‘showgirls’. Drinks can tend to be a bit pricey, but the overall ambiance, live performances and the opportunity to mingle with an upwardly mobile and more mature crowd makes it all worth it. There’s a swanky VIP lounge for cardholders (can be ordered online or for an extra fee at the door) and a lounge within a club called Taboo.QC‑6, Vabaduse väljak 5, tel. +372 56 88 44 44, www.klubiteater.ee. Open Fri, Sat 24:00-05:00. Closed Mon - Thu, Sun. Admission €8 - 15. Age restriction 21+. XEW Privé Along with Teater and Vabank, the smaller Privé is considered one of Tallinn’s three trendiest club destinations. Open Thursday through Saturday, each night of the weekend promises a very cool scene where you’ll hear the region’s or world’s hottest DJs and other fun events. Ask about their VIP packages.QB‑6, Harju 6, tel. +372 56 70 59 99, www.prive.ee. Open Fri, Sat 23:00-05:00. Closed Mon - Wed, Sun. Admission €9 - 15. Age restriction 20+. XEJ Venus Club Rows of classical cherub statues added to an Arabian desert motif are certainly over the top, but we think the überkitsch decor helps to create a great party atmosphere. Open six days a week, indeed the party never seems to stop. The excellent bartenders mix fantastic cocktails and there are loads of special events to keep things hopping and interesting. This place is really all about having a great time and the vibe here isn’t as serious as some of the ‘Elite’ clubs in town - which is in our opinion a good thing. It’s also one of the few clubs in town where you can often find people dancing before midnight. QD‑5, Vana-Viru 14, tel. +372 551 99 99, www.venusclub.ee. Open 23:0004:00; Fri, Sat 23:00-05:00; closed Mon. Admission €0 - 10. Age restriction 21+. XJ facebook.com/TallinnInYourPocket
If you’re looking for food and drink after the pubs close, here are some decent options. Peetri Pizza A local favourite, Peetri offers pizzas that we find well, passable. Apart from this fairly simple café, it has various branches and stands all over town just in case you need that cheesy fix.QC‑5, Vana-Posti 2, tel. +372 58 55 87 87, www.peetripizza.ee. Open 11:00-01:00; Fri, Sat 11:00-04:00. Also at: E-2, Roosikrantsi 23, tel. +372 660 26 26. Open 12:00 - 01:00, Fri, Sat 12:00 - 06:00. SJ Tommi Tavern Primarily known for its reasonably priced lunches and excellent grilled meat, Tommi Tavern also doubles as a pretty decent and cosy pub for grabbing some drinks and appetisers with friends before you hit the town.QK‑8, Tatari 64, tel. +372 625 78 16, www.tommitavern.ee. Open 11:00-05:00; Thu, Fri 11:00-07:00; Sat 12:00-07:00; Sun 12:00-05:00. PB S Wok to Walk Part of a European chain that began in the Netherlands and inspired by Asian street food vendors, Wok to Walk takes a slightly different approach to the chain concept. The food here is locally sourced where possible and convenient in the ‘fresh casual’ style and cooked right in front of you. Dine in or take out depending on your preference and the options of wok-style cuisine are seemingly endless. There’s also a huge amount of choice for vegetarians, vegans and those who have allergies to certain foods. Certainly a great choice for anyone who loves Asian cuisine.QD‑5, Vana-Viru 14, tel. +372 444 33 20, www.woktowalk.com. Open 10:00-23:00; Fri, Sat 10:00-06:00. €. PB S J 6 W October - November 2019
Nightlife Wine bars In recent years, wine bars have emerged as a sophisticated, mature alternative in this overly beer-centric town. Flamm Named after the famous Alsatian ‘flammkuchen’, a thin crust pizza-like dish, Flamm is one of many addition to rapidly developing Rotermanni area. This hip little bar and kitchen is perfect for after work drinks and snacks. While we would have liked the base of our ‘flammkuchen’ to be thinner, the toppings were exact and the service, friendly. QE‑4, Rotermanni 2, tel. +372 53 33 71 54. Open 12:0020:00; Fri, Sat 12:00-22:00; closed Sun. €€. Paar Veini Certainly not as ‘posh’ as many of its counterparts, ‘Couple of Wines’ caters to the less sophisticated wine-drinker as is evident in their bohemian-like décor and a relatively inexpensive wine-list - not to say that their wines aren’t sophisticated. This is the place for the kind of people who enjoy a glass of wine, but don’t want the snobbery of what usually goes along with it. Great spot to sip a few glasses and enjoy pleasant conversation among friends before hitting the clubs.QC‑5, Sauna 1, tel. +372 660 30 36, www. paarveini.ee. Open Mon, Tue 18:00-24:00; Wed, Thu 18:00-03:00; Fri, Sat 18:00-04:30; closed Sun. J6W Pan Y Vino Great wines, friendly service and some tasty but simple food, make this wine bar both popular and a really nice spot to spend a few hours with a small group or a loved one. The Peruvian owner has worked in the industry for years and he takes a lot of pride in making everyone feel at home and comfortable - so much so that you’ll probably want to come back for more.QC‑3, Lai 35, tel. +372 525 85 17. Open 16:00-01:00; Fri, Sat 16:00-03:00; closed Mon, Sun. €€. BSJ6W Time to Wine Bar & Shop While wine bars have been opening up all over the place in Tallinn, Time to Wine stands out from rest, as it’s the only “self-service” wine bar. What does that mean exactly? There are 22 different wines to choose from, which you can drink as much or as little of, as you like. It’s all registered on a chip card. If that’s not enough, there are many more bottles to choose from, which you can take home to try instead.QA‑3, Kopli 6, tel. +372 55 51 81 50, www. timetowine.ee. Open 14:00-23:00; Sun 15:00-21:00; Thu 14:00-01:00; Fri, Sat 14:00-02:00. €€. Wine Not? This chic little wine bar is just the kind of place to spend a relaxed evening while enjoying a glass of wine and some great tapas. The bar specialises mainly in Portuguese wine, but what makes Wine Not? different from the rest is that you can try any bottle before you buy.QB‑4, Lai 6, tel. +372 600 32 22. Open 17:00-24:00; Fri, Sat 15:00-01:30; closed Mon, Sun. J6W 82 Tallinn In Your Pocket
adult entertainment Don’t expect to partake from afar. If they perform on stage at all, dancers in Tallinn’s striptease clubs typically visit the tables, getting up close and personal to collect tips. While between performances on the stage, other dancers will try to coax you into buying an expensive ‘ladies’ cocktail’, which is essentially a huge tip for sitting with you and making dull small talk. Lately it seems that ‘Gentlemen’s’ clubs have been popping up in every shady corner of Old Town, here we have listed just a few of them - but beware, most clubs will either try to rip you off in one way or another, especially the ones we don’t have listed.
Strip Clubs Casanova Club Probably one of the most beautifully designed adult entertainment spots in Tallinn, Casanova is brilliantly decorated in an ‘Arabian Nights’ motif and certainly reminds one of a stylish harem. The rest of the details are pretty much the same as the majority of these kind of clubs in the city - if you’re lucky though, you’ll meet a girl who is a smart business woman and will offer to do a floor show even if there aren’t any scheduled. QC‑5, Suur-Karja 13, tel. +372 631 49 00, www. casanovaclub.ee. Open 22:00-05:00; closed Mon. Admission €8. XJW The Score This small club just on the edge of Old Town provides two things that most men love best - naked women and sports. Alongside the traditional plush seats and stripper poles you’ll also find more than a few flat screens playing the latest game involving - well, balls. QD‑5, Vana-Viru 14, tel. +372 642 04 44, www. thescore.ee. Open 09:00-07:00. Admission €5 - 10. Age restriction 21+. XJWD X-Club One of the most sophisticated clubs of this type in Tallinn, X-Club is favoured by businessmen and high-end bachelor parties. The luxurious interior puts you in the mood instantly; friendly and professional staff add to the relaxed and pleasurable atmosphere. There are many forms of entertainment: the main hall provides graceful dance performances, you can order a private show of your choosing - from a delicate water show to an edgy torture chamber experience - or you can be the star of the night and give a dazzling show at newly opened and well-equipped karaoke hall. Thrill and enjoyment await!QB‑6, Harju 6, tel. +372 631 05 75, www.xclub.ee. Open 21:00-06:00. Age re‑ striction 21+. Admission €10. XL J W
Hotels Tallinn’s hospitality industry has pretty much reached capacity and the total number of rooms sits at over 7800. For the tourist this means the choice of where to stay has never been better, and the room rates are also likely to remain competitive. With the exception of the five-star hotels listed in the Cream of the Crop category, the price bands used refer to the rack rate for a double room.
Cream of the crop Schlössle The elegance, history and warmth of its three attached Old Town buildings are a major part of Schlössle’s fivestar appeal. Over the past decade this luxury hotel has played host to musicians and heads of state, but even if you aren’t rock or royalty, the helpful and friendly staff will treat you as such. A beautiful medieval lobby, a crackling fireplace and a world class restaurant invite you to linger and stay just one more night.QC‑4, Pühavaimu 13/15, tel. +372 699 77 00, www.schloesslehotel.com. singles €199 - 349, doubles €199 - 349, suites €309 - 1500 Extra bed €75, pets €32. ZPGUIJ6WKHD hhhhh
SYMBOL key P Air conditioning Z Anti-allergy rooms O Casino
H Conference facilities
U Facilities for the disabled
F Fitness centre
L Free parking
R LAN connection 6 Pet-friendly K Restaurant
J Old Town location
C Swimming pool
Spa hotels Each of the spa hotels below offers accommodation as well as treatment packages and day spa services. Prices here are for accommodation only, check their websites for details on their package deals.
St. Petersbourg Aristocrats in the 19th century would stay at the St. Petersbourg when visiting Tallinn, likewise 21st-century travellers looking for luxury Old Town accommodation can find it here at the city’s oldest, continuously-running hotel. Completely renovated to keep pace with newer rivals, the hotel treats its guests with modern comforts like deluxe artdeco furnishing and plush bathrobes, all the while retaining a strong sense of old world charm.QB‑5, Rataskaevu 7, tel. +372 628 65 00, www.hotelstpetersbourg.com. singles €150 - 300, doubles €150 - 300, suites €260 - 450 Extra bed €75, pets €32. ZPGUIJ6WK HD hhhhh
Braavo Spa Hotel And now for something completely different! Located just at the edge of Old Town, this bright and colourful lodging is designed with families and youth in mind. The rooms are spacious, cheerful and come at an affordable price. Don’t expect too many extras, but if you’re looking for a place to rest your head in a central location this hotel will certainly do. If you fancy a swim or a workout, the attached Reval Sport complex complete with four pools, sauna and a water park will keep you entertained. QD‑3, Aia 20, tel. +372 699 97 77, www.braavohotel. com. doubles €80 - 180, family room €100 - 180 Extra bed €20. GJ W C D F
The Three Sisters Hotel This luxury hotel built into three famous medieval houses on the end of Pikk tänav provides the quintessential Tallinn experience. The top-notch establishment offers large rooms decorated in a striking blend of modern and antique styles. Flat-screen TVs can be found alongside old-fashioned bathtubs and hidden staircases. One suite even sports a grand piano. The staff will cater to your every whim here and almost every request a guest might have will be taken care of. The world-class SÖE restaurant is just icing on an already delicious cake. Beware though, if you do check-in, you may never want to leave. QC‑3, Pikk 71/Tolli 2, tel. +372 630 63 00, www.3s.ee. singles €120 - 150, doubles €140 - 185, suites €320 365 Extra bed €55, pets €20. GU J R 6 W K H hhhhh
Kalev Spa Hotel & Water Park The newly renovated Kalev Spa Hotel & Water Park is back open for business. This favourite Old Town spa and hotel has everything you need for a relaxing weekend or lazy afternoon. New additions include the spacious restaurant Allee with a terrace overlooking Kanuti park, a fabulous water park, a sauna and jacuzzi area, as well as a health and beauty centre. All rooms are bright and offer all the comforts you may need. If you’re travelling with kids, ask about rooms with pull-down bunk beds. The room price also includes unlimited use of the water park and gym. QD‑4, Aia 18 / Kanuti 2, tel. +372 649 33 00, www.kalevspa.ee. singles €77 - 124, doubles €88 - 135, suites €230 - 269, family rooms €175 - 213 Extra bed €32, pets €22. ZP G U J R 6 W K CD Fw
Read more reviews online: tallinn.inyourpocket.com
Tallink Spa & Conference Hotel Gigantic, bare-breasted sirens flanking the doors and a bright, groovy lobby bar are your first clues that this place is far bolder than your average spa hotel. Apart
84 Tallinn In Your Pocket
Hotels from its signature Aqua Spa, spa packages and guest rooms - some of which overlook the decadent pool bar in the hotel’s central atrium - the high-tech establishment near the passenger port offers six conference rooms, a Fidel cigar bar and a beauty salon.QE‑2, Sad‑ ama 11a, tel. +372 630 10 00, www.tallinkhotels.com/ tallink-spa-conference-hotel. doubles €119 - 169, suites €159 - 219 Extra bed €30. PG T U R W KH C D hhhh
Over €100 Centennial Hotel Tallinn Open just in time for Estonia’s Centenary, Tallinn’s latest hotel offers a stylish and cosy place to lay one’s head while visiting the city. Although it has the feeling of a business-class hotel, and certainly suits that role just fine, the Centennial offers up plenty of comfort and cosiness for those on a romantic getaway or a city break in this historic ‘village’. The standard rooms are certainly adequate for most purposes, but if you’re looking for something a little more spacious with a few extra creature comforts make sure to check out one of the ‘Zen’ or ‘Zen Deluxe’ rooms. The onsite restaurant comes highly recommended, the menu is both creative and fresh and the bar certainly a nice place to unwind or take in a nightcap.QJ‑8, Endla 15, tel. +372 647 47 00, www. centennialhoteltallinn.com. singles €60 - 120, doubles €65 - 125, triples €95 - 155, suites €80 - 200 Extra bed €15. ZP G U L W K
Get the In Your Pocket City Essentials app The von Stackelberg Hotel Tallinn A trend setter with its too-cool style and creature comforts, The von Stackelberg Hotel Tallinn offers well-outfitted and comfortable rooms just steps away from Toompea. They have several classes of rooms available, but our personal favourite happens to be the larger ‘Zen’ rooms - which offer extra perks such as slippers, bathrobes and aromatherapy amenities to spoil your inner child. The level of service here is also top-notch.QJ‑7, Toompuiestee 23, tel. +372 660 07 00, www.vonstackelberghotel.com. singles €69 - 189, doubles €79 - 236 Extra bed €35, pets €50. ZPIR6WKHCD
Price €60 - 100 Bern Hotel Bern, which is tucked into a courtyard that’s conveniently across from a grocery store, aims to bring its guests the best in Swiss-style hospitality with its friendly and professional staff. Due to size restrictions the 50-room establishment hasn’t got many perks, but it does have a 24hour bar, and breakfast is served in their petite, in-house restaurant.QD‑4, Aia 10, tel. +372 680 66 30, www. tallinnhotels.ee. singles €84 - 155, doubles €88 - 165, deluxe €176 - 243 Extra bed €35, pets €16. PGU J6WKD
Merchant’s House This beautiful structure is essentially a 14th century merchant’s house turned into a luxury, boutique-style hotel, so don’t be surprised if you get lost in the twists and turns of its corridors. Each of its rooms and suites has been done up with cool, chic decor, tastefully fitted to the historic building. Look for creature comforts like plasma TVs, highspeed Internet and fluffy bathrobes. You’ll also find a ‘relax room’, Italian restaurant, café and an bar.QB‑5, Dunkri 4/6, tel. (+372) 697 75 00, www.merchantshousehotel. com. singles €80 - 130, doubles €90 - 190, suites €155 600 Extra bed €26. ZPGIJRWKHDw
ibis Tallinn Center ibis Tallinn offers all the basic comforts you would expect from this international chain. Centrally located just outside of the Old Town, the rooms are functional, comfortable and clean. All rooms have been specially designed to keep outdoor noise to a minimum. Ask about one of five rooms with a sauna when booking.QL‑8, Juhkentali 28, tel. +372 699 44 99, www.ibistallinncenter.ee. singles €60 - 70, doubles €65 - 80, triples €76 - 90. ZPU WKH
My City Hotel One of the finest examples of a beautiful, Stalin-era building next to the Sőprus cinema, My City Hotel offers marblesque stylishness right in the heart of Old Town. In fact this hotel is right in the middle of Tallinn’s entertainment district. You’ll also find lots of extras right in the hotel and breakfast is served in-room by request. Business travellers will appreciate the small conference facilities and free WIFI throughout the hotel. Pricier superior rooms are more spacious and have better views and are equipped with coffee making facilities. Little car park has also 2 charging points for electrical cars.QC‑5, Vana-Posti 11, tel. +372 622 09 00, www.mycityhotel.ee. singles €85 - 105, doubles €95 - 115 Extra bed €30, pets €20, parking €20/night. ZPJ6WKHD hhhh
Modern and functional rooms at ibis Tallinn Centre
October - November 2019
Hotels Kreutzwald Hotel Tallinn Within a brief walking distance from Old Town, the fivestorey Kreutzwald Hotel Tallinn is a bright and modern hotel. All rooms offer air conditioners, coffee/tea-making facilities, mini-bars and free WIFI, In addition to that, the spacious ‘Zen’ and ‘Zen Delux’ rooms include, flat-screen televisions and Jacuzzis. Check out the authentic Italian restaurant with its lunch specials. In the summer they also have a spacious outdoor courtyard patio.QJ‑8, Endla 23, tel. +372 666 48 00, www.kreutzwaldhotel.com. sin‑ gles €50 - 145, doubles €55 - 155, triples €70 - 165 Extra bed €30, pets €30. PGULR6WKHDw Tallink City Hotel The Tallink ferry line made absolutely no compromises on quality when they installed their sparkling, mirrored hotel in downtown Tallinn. The full-service facility provides all the right touches, from conference rooms and chic restaurant to candies on the pillows. Finnish guests in particular will appreciate the nightclub and free morning sauna. Rooms are done up in a bright, sharp, contemporary style, with the higher priced ‘de Luxe’ doubles providing a lot more space.QE‑5, A. Laikmaa 5, tel. +372 630 08 00, www.tallinkhotels.com/tallink-cityhotel. doubles €104 - 209, Business €114 - 224 Extra bed €30. PG T U R W K H D F hhhh
Hostels Due to the nature of hostels, they seem to come and go from year to year and new ones are popping up all the time. Likewise they also close down quite frequently and or change their names. Although not a complete list, here we have listed some of the more important and or centrally located ones. Academic Hostel If you like affordable and comfortable accommodation with great service, the Academic Hostel is just for you. This hostel is well suited for both individual guests and families. It’s located about 5 km from the city centre, on the grounds of the Tallinn University of Technology. You will find excellent sports facilities as well as other amenities nearby. Take trolleybus N°3 from Vabaduse väljak to the Keemia stop.QAkadeemia tee 11/1, tel. +372 620 22 75, www.academichostel.com. 108 Total rooms Twin room €37, extra bed €16, pets €12, breakfast €4. GU L R 6 W
Under €60 Although there are loads of hostels around town, the free-spirited often communal living feel of them is not for everyone - especially if you are looking for something a little more private. Here are some alternatives. City Hotel Tallinn In what seems to be a new trend in the city, the Unique Hotel has converted some of their rooms to a no-frills concept. You can expect the same quality and modern rooms as before, just without the costly extras, such as room-cleaning and towel changes. These of course can be purchased for an additional charge along with other services. We think it’s a great option for those on a budget, who don’t want a ‘budget’ room. Check-in is right next door at The von Stackelberg Hotel Tallinn. QJ‑7, Paldiski mnt. 3, tel. +372 660 07 00, www. uniquecityhotel.com. singles €25 - 75, doubles €24 80, triples €42 - 95 Extra bed €25, pets €20. Breakfast €10. GU L 6 W
Knight House Located surprisingly enough on ‘Knight Street’ and in the building that actually housed the former order of Teutonic Knights, this establishment is more like an apartment rental place than a typical backpacker’s hostel. They have a stylish common room, private rooms and all sorts of other amenities too extensive to list.QB‑5, Rüütli 16, tel. +372 631 14 44, www.toth.ee/knight-house/. singles €23 - 27, doubles €32 - 40, triples €42 - 48, quads €44 - 54, place in dorm €11 - 13. JW
Tallink Express Hotel The smart-looking structure 300m from the passenger port is home to a sparklingly modern and orderly hotel that caters to visitors who want easy access to both the Old Town and to Helsinki-bound ships. Guests are treated to free wireless internet, and should consider trying out the hotel’s famed soup buffet.QE‑2, Sadama 9, tel. +372 667 87 00, www.tallinkhotels.com/tallink-express-hotel. doubles €59 - 179 Extra bed €30. GTURWK hhh
Viru Backpackers Tallinn Backpackers’ smaller Old Town facility has the same fun, backpacker-run feel as its main hostel as well as great central location, but built for those who prefer a clean, private room. Computer, WiFi, kitchen and laundry are available, and guests are welcome to visit the Olevimägi location to groove with the folks there as well.QC‑5, Viru 5, tel. +372 644 60 50, www.toth.ee/viru-backpackers/. singles €30, doubles €44, triples €57, quads €68. JR Wi
86 Tallinn In Your Pocket
Cheerful rooms at Academic Hostel
Living in Tallinn
We hope you’ve enjoyed your visit to Tallinn - we think it’s a charming city full of surprises and excitement, and we hope you agree. If you’ve had a good time as a visitor here, whether you came on a business trip, or as a tourist, maybe you ought to consider living and working in the Estonian capital, where doing business is simple and efficient. It’s easy to get to work here in Tallinn, and there are many organisations ready and waiting to help you, like Welcoming Program. Welcoming Programme is a state provided and free of charge national programme, designed to make it easy as possible for newly arrived foreigners to join in with Estonian life, and to get used to the business, study and leisure culture. Participating in the programme will give you a wealth of information on everyday life in Estonia, plus how to study at university, how to get lessons in the Estonian language, and much more. There’s plenty of additional information on online resources about life in Tallinn. One of the best places to go is good old Facebook - the social network is still a great way to find out about places and events, wherever you are. One of the more informative groups is Expats in Tallinn/Estonia, which carries hints and tips on everything. Be warned: although the group is, shall we say, enthusiastically moderated, you may get the occasional spiky response to a standard query. Don’t let it put you off - this is a mine of worthwhile information. There’s also the excellent independent blog Expat in Estonia. This is filled with compelling content on everything from what to do on a cold autumn day, right through to the thorny question of how to find housing in Estonia if you’re coming into the country. For serious business queries and help finding work, the Expat Jobs in Tallinn Facebook group is ideal, given that it’s where recruiters regularly post advertisements, and it’s also a place where jobseekers can be sure hundreds, sometimes thousands, of people will see their posts. Also operating in Tallinn and helping people settling in Estonia with the administrative workload, and all other matters related to adaptation, is Expat Relocation Estonia, which offers a wide range of services for those who have relocated, or are about to relocate. It’s staffed by Estonians who have a strong corporate background, and is worth a look. facebook.com/TallinnInYourPocket
Everyone needs to let their hair down from time to time, and the CS Tallinn Facebook group, linked to the global Couchsurfing network, always has a meeting or event in a restaurant or bar that you can attend, even if you’re not a member of the parent site. The International Table, happening weekly at cafes and bars across Tallinn, is a get-toknow-you event organised by youth and student leadership organisation AIESEC in Estonia, but you will find that everyone is welcome. Finally, InterNations is a long-established international community for expats, and it holds monthly meetings at which there is often a high concentration of IT and startup employees, but where you can doubtless find someone who has something in common with your own experiences.
Organisations Estonian language house Estonian is a truly unique language, but learning it can be quite daunting. The Estonian Language House is here to help. With various opportunities for learning like language courses, online studies, writing aids, tandem studies (learn Estonian with a native speaker who wants to learn your native tongue), language cafés (enrich your language skills in a casual environment), and Estonian cultural clubs (visits to local cultural events). Best of all, everything related to language studies is free! Yes, free! There’s no excuse not to learn Estonian.QE-6, Rävala 5, tel. +372 659 90 22, www.meis. ee/en/estonian-languages-houses. Open 09:00 - 16:00. Closed Sat, Sun. International House of Estonia The International House of Estonia is a one-stop-shop for internationals in Estonia. The Centre facilitates communication with the state, provides counselling and aims to help create a network. The services provided are aimed at internationals (mainly specialists) who have come to Estonia to work or to study, but there are also services for families and companies looking to hire international talent. QM-9, Valukoja 8, C Wing, I floor, tel. +372 627 97 01, www.workinestonia. com/internationalhouse. Tue, Wed 09:00 - 17:30, Thu 10:00 - 18:30. Closed Mon, Fri, Sat, Sun. October - November 2019
Living in Tallinn
American globetrotter and blogger Michelle Bell is a ‘mother’ of two dogs, a fairly recent arrival to Estonia and has likely appeared in numerous tourist photo albums while walking her dogs in Kadriorg Park. What originally brought you to Estonia, where are you from and how long have you lived here?
How much of a culture shock was it for you to move here?
I moved to Tallinn in April from Charlotte, NC for my husband’s new job. My dad was in the army and I’ve lived several places in the US and in Germany, so I’m not from one specific place.
I’ve moved every four to six years, so relocating here wasn’t unorthodox for me. I’m sometimes taken aback when I forgot that I’m not in an English speaking country and hear Estonian.
What were the reasons that made you want to relocate to Estonia?
What are some of your favourite spots in Tallinn?
Several years ago my husband and I discussed moving to Europe and we were presented with the opportunity with his new position. We specifically wanted a new experience, a different quality of life, and the ability to travel more freely. It can be somewhat difficult for US citizens to obtain visa sponsorship in another country but that wasn’t the case for Estonia. 88 Tallinn In Your Pocket
I love Kadriorg Park and take our two dogs on a walk there everyday. Though the number of tourist photos with me picking up dog poop in the background is increasing. I also frequent Whisper Sister. The bar staff are welcoming and the cocktails are inventive.
Living in Tallinn How would you describe Estonia as a country, and Estonians? Estonians are very resilient people. It seems as though Estonia has made a conscious effort to reinvent itself after Soviet occupation and has been successful in that. Most 20- and 30-somethings that I’ve met are very friendly and outgoing. I haven’t explored most of Estonia yet but from what I’ve seen, it is quite small and flat. How is it to live here and does it feel like home now? Living without AC has been adjustment but I remind myself that I am helping the environment. We were fortunate to find a spacious three room apartment in Kadriorg and feel settled. I’ve developed many friendships, with both Estonians and other expats, and the sense of community has made Estonia feel like home. This is something that I want to explore more in my blog Michelle En route. I plan to share my experiences of living in Estonia as an expat. What is your favourite Estonian word or words and why? ‘Terviseks’ is my favorite Estonian word. Sharing a drink is a ritual that unites most people regardless of language, culture, age, etc..
Welcoming programme for new arrivals Are you considering moving to Estonia? Or maybe you’re already living in this beautiful and innovative country? Do you want to acquire the primary knowledge and skills to settle in as fast as possible? To get you acquainted with the Estonian way of life, Estonia offers you a comprehensive Welcoming Programme.
Investing in your future
WELCOMING PROGRAMME (free of charge) consists of various informative and interactive TRAINING MODULES: •
BASIC MODULE which gives an overview of the Estonian state, society, culture and people, also rights and obligations of residents, public services etc;
THEMATIC MODULES which give an overview of working and entrepreneurship, family life, studying and research;
SEPARATE TRAINING MODULES for children under the age of 15 and for the beneficiaries of international protection;
BASIC LEVEL ESTONIAN LANGUAGE TRAINING (level A1). More information about the programme and registration can be found at www.settleinestonia.ee
October - November 2019
Shopping & Directory
Staapli 3 Art Gallery and Art Cafe - bringing a splash of colour to your life! Please see reviews on pages 36 and 91. Photo: Andrei Chertkov
There are plenty of opportunities to spend money shopping in Tallinn. Old Town is literally lined with dozens of souvenir, antique and speciality stores. Within Old Town the main shopping streets are Viru, Müürivahe, Suur-Karja, Väike-Karja and Kullassepa. The most central shopping centre is Viru Centre with Tallinna Kaubamaja department store right next door. Alongside its stunning, ‘new meets old’ architecture, the Rotermann Quarter features dozens of unique shopping and dining experiences. Other smaller malls include the Foorum Centre and the Solaris Centre.
Bookshops You won’t find a great selection of books in English or other foreign languages in Tallinn, but you won’t be left without any reading material either. Rahva Raamat has the widest selection of English language novels. Apollo bookstore A good selection of English-language novels and travel guides.QD‑6, Estonia pst. 9 (Solaris Centre), tel. +372 633 60 00, www.apollo.ee. Open 10:00-21:00. Puänt A great little shop for books, stationery, and vinyl.QJ‑7, Telliskivi 60A, tel. +372 58 87 66 03, www.puant.ee. Open 11:00-19:00; Sat, Sun 11:00-17:00. Rahva Raamat Rahva Raamat has probably the best selection of English books in Estonia. With two levels (the first floor has a 1930s feel with plenty of cosy corners for reading), two cafés, and plenty of, well, books, it’s easy to get lost in a good story here. QC‑6, Pärnu mnt. 10, tel. +372 644 36 82, www. rahvaraamat.ee. Open Mon, Tue 08:00-20:00; Wed, Thu 08:00-23:00; Fri 08:00-24:00; Sat 11:00-24:00; Sun 11:0020:00. 90 Tallinn In Your Pocket
Commercial galleries and art shops Asuur Keraamika Located inside one of Tallinn’s medieval defence towers Asuur might just be one of the most unique ceramic boutiques/workshops around.QB‑3, Kooli 7, tel. +372 646 40 96, www.asuurkeraamika.ee. Open 11:00-18:00; Sat 11:00-15:00; closed Su Bogapott Not only is it a cosy little café (see Cafés), it’s also an artist’s studio, where you can see the craftsmen at work and a gallery/shop where you can view and purchase their unique hand-crafted, earthen wares.QB‑5, Pikk jalg 9, tel. +372 631 31 81, www.bogapott.ee. Open 10:00-19:00. Fe Gallery At Fe Gallery, you can find a variety of quirky and classical pieces by local artists including metal, ceramics, glass, textiles, and jewellery.QB‑5, Lühike jalg 1, tel. +372 53 44 79 22, www.artfe.eu. Open 11:00-18:00; Sun 11:00-17:00. Also at: B-5, Lühike jalg 8. Open 11:00 - 18:00, Sun 11:00 - 17:00. Galerii-G This long-established arts and crafts supply shop also has a number of original works for sale in their gallery.QC‑6, Vabaduse väljak 6, tel. +372 644 89 71, www.galeriig. ee. Open 10:00-18:00; closed Sun, Sat. Helina Tilk Joyful hand-painted porcelain, glass and ceramics by an Estonian artist.QB‑5, Rataskaevu 6, tel. +372 646 42 80, www.helinatilk.com. Open 10:00-18:00; Sun 10:0015:00; Sat 10:00-17:00. Also at: C-4, Pikk 41, tel 641 45 15. Open 10:00 - 18:00, Sat 10:00 - 17:00, Sun 10:00 - 16:00. tallinn.inyourpocket.com
Shopping & Directory Kunstiaken This gallery and shop offers textiles, glass, ceramics, leather, and more, all designed and made by Estonian artists.QC‑4, Vene 20, tel. (+372) 646 42 09, www. kunstiaken.ee. Open 10:00-18:00. Okapi An art and design gallery that also functions as a glass studio. They sell Estonian applied arts, photography, design and graphic works.QB‑5, Niguliste 2, tel. (+372) 56 88 14 34, www.okapi.ee. Open 11:00-18:00; Sun 11:00-16:00. Staapli 3 Art Gallery and art Café This Noblessner Port area commercial gallery and café has something for every taste and budget, served up with a side of coffee and cake. Read more about them in our Noblessner section on page 36.QJ‑6, Staapli 3-114, tel. +372 660 22 11, www.staapliart.ee. Open 10:00-20:00; Fri, Sat, Sun 09:00-20:00. Tauno Kangro Gallery Estonia’s top sculptor has a wide variety of works for sale, including large and miniature sculptures as well as pastel drawings. Here you can find exquisite nudes, game animals and mythological pieces at reasonable prices. For larger items, international shipping also available.QD‑4, Uus 20, tel. +372 641 10 02, www.skulptuuristuudio.ee. Open during business days 09:00 - 17:00, most of the time. It’s adviseable to call ahead though.
Estonian design Although we haven’t made a final count of all the souvenir shops and boutiques in Old Town there appear to be thousands of them. This makes it pretty hard for the tourist, not to mention locals, to find souvenirs, fashion, art and other handicrafts that are truly Estonian - either made here or conceived and designed here. Listed below you can find a number of shops, products and boutiques that specialise in bringing authentic Estonian goods to the public. A-galerii Estonian-designed jewellery and fashion accessories. QC‑4, Hobusepea 2, tel. +372 646 41 01, www.agalerii. ee. Open 10:00-18:00; Sat 11:00-16:00; closed Sun. A.G.A.N. - As Good As New Both a second-hand boutique and a showcase for young Estonian designers specialising in creations made from reclaimed materials.QE‑4, Rotermanni 5, tel. +372 56 49 56 57. Open 10:00-20:00; Sun 11:00-18:00. Bebe Organic Bebe Organic children’s clothing specialises in unique, sustainable wear that is harmless to the sensitive skin of children. The brand produces two collections per year, which can be seen in their Old Town shop or online. QC‑5, Müürivahe 28, www.bebe-organic.com. Open 11:0019.00; Sat 11:00-16:00; closed Sun. facebook.com/TallinnInYourPocket
made with love Estonian Folk Art and Craft Union handicraft centers & shops Selection of handicrafts by master craftsmen from all over Estonia.Qtel. +372 631 40 76, www.folkart.ee. Open 10:0018:00; Sun 10:00-17:00. Estonian Handi‑ craft House, (C-4) Pikk 22; Estonian Handicraft Home, (C-4) Vene 12; Allikamaja Handicraft, (B-5) Lühike jalg 6a; Estonian Handicraft Locomotive, (A-3) Kopli 1.
Estonian Design House The Estonian Design House showcases the best of Estonian product design from interior accessories to fashion and is run by the Estonian Association of Designers.QD‑6, Estonia pst. 9 (Solaris), tel. +372 53 57 11 50, www. estoniandesignhouse.ee. Open 10:00-21:00. Oma Asi Design This design/concept/lifestyle store features carefully chosen jewellery, fashion, home decor and accessories made by local and international artists. If you’re looking for something a little different, this is the place to come. QD‑5, Viru 21. Open 10:00-20:00. Reet Aus Ethical Estonian design with an emphasis on re-using or upcycling materials.QJ‑7, Telliskivi 62, tel. +372 56 50 70 22, www.reetaus.com. Open 11:00-19:00; Sat 11:0016:00; closed Sun. Tallinn Design House The Tallinn Design House showcases the best of Estonian design from fashion apparel, jewellery, handbags, footwear, organic cosmetics, ceramics to furniture, interior design accessories and interior lighting. The unique interactive showroom acts as a multifunctional art space, for presentations, events, and meetups.QE‑4, Rotermanni 14, tel. +372 58 65 05 58, www.tallinndesignhouse.com. Open 10:0019:00; Sat 10:00-18:00; Sun 11:00-16:00. Y The Smallest Shop in Town Local design shop where you can find anything from unique gifts, organic cosmetics, toys, interior details to art and pet goods.QC‑5, Raekoja plats 18, tel. +372 565 30 06. Open 10:30-18:30. October - November 2019
Shopping & Directory bike shop
vivian vau shoe salon
Tehnopluss Tehnopluss specialises in electric bicycles, in particular, German brands like Haibike, Winora and Prophete (which reaches a top speed of 25 km/hr). They offer on-site repair and maintenance, and also sell a huge selection of parts and accessories.QJ‑7, Suve 2/ Pal‑ diski mnt. 6, tel. +372 58 55 32 92, www.electrobike. ee. Open 13:00-18:00; closed Sat, Sun.
The exquisite shoes and boots are made for Vivian Vau in Italy and Spain, designed to be comfortable are made of leather and come in many colours and plenty of character. Sizes from 33 - 45.QC‑5, Kuninga 1, tel. +372 641 64 40, www.vivianvau.ee. Open 11:0019:00; Sat 12:00-17:00; closed Sun.
Gifts & Souvenirs The difficult challenge of selecting souvenirs that possess some practical use is actually possible to achieve in Tallinn. However, just as in any town heavily reliant on tourism, you could also go poor buying useless crap or items that really have nothing to do with Estonia, such as the ever prevalent Russian nesting doll. Just like the nesting doll, Old Town is filled with souvenir shops, some even inside other souvenir shops. Here we have listed just a few that specialise in various gift items. See the ‘Authentic Estonian’ section for souvenirs that truly represent this country. DEKO Local design and small factory production is tastefully combined at DEKO, where you can find unique handmade gifts items and lots of cool retro stuff too.QB‑5, Voorim‑ ehe 1, tel. +372 56 80 90 85. Open 11:00-19:00; closed Sun. Eesti Esindus This souvenir shop features different sections devoted to various handicrafts such as leather goods, local delicacies, wood items etc. The craftsmen sell their own wares and you won’t find any ‘Russian nesting dolls’ or other non-Estonian souvenirs for sale here - a plus in our books. QC‑5, Viru 3, tel. +372 640 40 37, www.estonianshop. com/en. Open 10:00-20:00. Hää Eesti Asi Everything for sale in this large souvenir shop was either designed or produced in Estonia. From food and drink to handicrafts - it can all be found here.QD‑5, Viru 23, tel. (+372) 56 98 63 84. Open 10:00-20:00. 92 Tallinn In Your Pocket
Hindricus anno 1393 This little shop with an interesting name sells items by Estonian folk art and handicraft masters, where you’re sure to find something different.QB‑5, Lühike jalg 2, tel. (+372) 660 52 03. Open 10:00-18:00; Sun 10:0017:00. Katariina Guild Various artisan shops/workshops, including a glass studio, ceramics studio, textile studio and hat workshop among others. You can witness the creation of the products on site.QC‑4, Vene 12/Katariina käik, www. katariinagild.eu. Open 11:00-18:00; closed Sun. Labora A gift shop filled with local handmade goods, including letterpress printed greeting cards, special seed cards which you can later grow into wild flowers, mechanical wooden toys, icons, calligraphy books, limp binding notebooks and much more.QC‑4, Vene 18, tel. (+372) 58 80 10 98, www.labora.ee. Open 10:00-18:00. Olde Hansa Shoppe This great medieval shop, brought to us by the folks at Olde Hansa, features authentic wares such as handblown glass, hand-crafted pottery, leather items and even spirits.QC‑5, Vanaturu kael 12, tel. (+372) 627 90 40, www.shoppe.ee. Open 10:00-21:00. Oma Asi ‘The Little Red House’ Located in a cute little house just off the main square, Oma Asi is home to the work of Estonia’s most talented designers and artists, aiming to bring quality, yet affordable and unique products to customers. The shop stocks the work of over 70 local artists and about 5 guest designers. QC‑4, Saiakang 4, www.omaasi. com. Open 10:00-19:00. tallinn.inyourpocket.com
Shopping & Directory Markets Baltic Station market Just a short jaunt from Old Town, the trendy Balti Jaam market brings close to 300 different retailers and smaller producers together, offering the most fresh, interesting, and exotic goods, all under one roof. Wander through the open-air market where you’ll find a great selection of produce. Inside, the meat, dairy and seafood halls offer a wide selection of primarily local products - as well as some of the freshest imported ingredients. You’ll also find a whole street food section and several eateries, with a lot of different vendors to choose from. Don’t forget about the antiques, clothing, shoes, handicrafts, brewery, supermarket, and fitness club as well - you might even be tempted to spend the whole day here, and there’s plenty of parking available in order to do just that. QA‑3, Kopli 1, tel. +372 641 34 36, www.astri.ee/bjt. Open 09:00-19:00; Sun 09:00-17:00. Street food area open daily 09:00 - 20:00, Sun 09:00 - 18:00.
Grocieries Delice The grocery store at Solaris shopping centre not only offers a wide selection of dry and frozen international food, there is also a huge variety of vegan products, including ready-made foods.QD‑6, Es‑ tonia pst. 9 (Solaris Centre), tel. +372 663 13 30, www.delice.ee. Open 09:00-23:00. Kolmjalg (the Everything Store) Conveniently located in the Old Town, this small grocer will help you in a pinch with all the basics. QB‑4, Rataskaevu 2, tel. +372 631 15 11. Open 24hrs. Maxima Express This two-level grocery store offers a good selection of ready-made food, snacks, and souvenirs, in addition to regular groceries.QC‑5, Viru 4, www. maxima.ee. Open 08:00-22:00. Rimi One of the largest grocery chains in Estonia.QD‑4, Aia 7, tel. +372 644 38 55, www.rimi.ee. Open 08:00-23:00. Also at: C-4, Pikk 11, tel. +372 55 58 90 04. Open 08:00 - 23:00. Also at: C-5. Viru 13/15. Open 08:00 - 22:00. Also at: K-7, Ahtri 9 (Nautica). Open 08:00 - 23:00.
Central market (Keskturg) A popular destination for fresh food items. Also has clothing and other assorted ‘treasures’. Take tram N°4 from the centre towards Ülemiste, make sure to get off at the Keskturg stop.QL‑8, Keldrimäe 9, tel. +372 660 63 04. Open 07:00-17:00. DEPOO Located just around the corner from Balti Jaam Market, Depoo features an assortment of vendors, previously enjoyed clothes, antiques, food products and a whole lot more.QJ‑7, Telliskivi 62, tel. +372 641 34 36, www. astri.ee/depoo/. Open 09:00-17:00; Sun, Sat 09:0016:00. Flower market The most central and popular place to buy flowers in Old Town.QD‑5, Viru 26. Open 24hrs. Knit market Little old ladies sell their knitwear here along the Old Town wall. Shopping here is almost a tradition for visitors.QD‑5, corner of Viru and Müürivahe. Open 09:00-17:00. facebook.com/TallinnInYourPocket
Selver Selver caters to all your grocery shopping needs, with a wonderful selection of fresh produce, local and imported foods, baked good, and more.QA‑4, Toompuiestee 37, tel. +372 619 24 40, www. selver.ee. Open 07:00-23:00. Also at: A-4, Kopli 1 (Baltic Station market 0-floor). Open 08:00 23:00.
alcohol Please note that alcohol sales in Tallinn are prohibited from 22:00 until 10:00. Alcostock Large assortment of wine, liquor and beer with a convenient location.QD‑5, Vana-Viru 4, tel. +372 641 98 70. Open 10:00-22:00. Also at: C-4, Viru 27. Open 10:00 - 22:00. Uba ja Humal This shop serves up both great coffees and superb craft beers. They feature one of the widest varieties of quality Estonian beers, alongside some truly excellent caffeinated beans from around the world. QC‑2, Võrgu 3, tel. +372 56 94 21 42. Open 10:0022:00; Mon 10:00-20:00; Sun 10:00-18:00. October - November 2019
Rotermann RotermannQuarter Quarter
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Shopping & Directory 1
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Rotermann Quarter Nestled between Old Town and harbour - what was once an old industrial area, has now transformed into a small village in itself. The architecture itself if worth a stroll through the area. The refurbished factory buildings now house great restaurants, trendy cafés, shops, offices, and more.QE‑4, Rotermanni/ Roseni, www. rotermann.eu.
Stradivarius Stradivarius offers and extensive range of fashion collections and accessories for a young, modern woman.QE‑4, Rotermanni 8, tel. +372 664 50 13, www.stradivarius.com. Open 10:00-20:00; Sun 11:00-18:00.
2 Platz This stylish yet elegant eatery nestled into an old, industrial limestone building is where you‘ll find artfully prepared cuisine, that is both innovative and a fresh fusion of European flavours using local ingredients whenever possible. Please read full review on p.59. QE‑4, Roseni 7, tel. +372 664 50 86, www.platz.ee. Open 11:30-23:00; Sun 11:30-22:00.
3 Basiilik Pizza & Pasta Delicious pizzas and pastas in the heart of Tallinn. You should also try their new vegan menu. See full review in the restaurant section on p.60. Q E‑4, Hobujaama 5, www.basiilik.ee. Open 11:30-23:00; Sun 11:30-22:00. Café part open 09:00 23:00. Also at: L-8, Tartu mnt. 87. Open 11:00 - 22:00.
Pull and Bear This brand is targeted at style-conscious youngsters, offering great quality for a reasonable price. QE‑4, Rotermanni 8, tel. +372 664 50 16, www. pullandbear.com. Open 10:00-20:00; Sun 11:0018:00. 94 Tallinn In Your Pocket
Bershka Bershka offers the latest fashionware, accessories and footwear for adventurous young people.QE‑4, Rotermanni 12, tel. +372 664 50 05, www. bershka.com. Open 10:00-20:00; Sun 11:0018:00. tallinn.inyourpocket.com
Shopping & Directory 6
carmen café Enjoy an early breakfast in the morning, and hearty soups and gourmet sandwiches throughout the day at Carmen Café. See full review on p.69.QE-4, Rotermanni 5, tel. +372 53 23 44 55, www.carmen.ee/cafe. Open 08:00-19:00; Sun, Sat 10:00-19:00.
Karja Quarter There are many fine and upscale boutiques located in and around Old Town, however, the area between Pärnu mnt. and Harju street, centred around Suur-Karja and Väike-Karja streets (area C-5 on the map) is fast becoming the ‘luxury’ shopping destination in Tallinn. Although not, yet, officially called the ‘Karja Quarter’, it’s a name we’ve come up with to classify this district. Below you’ll find a list of many of the high-end brands, jewellers and boutiques to be found in this area. See the centrespread (p. 50-51) for a map of the area, along with a list of our advertisers. Burberry QC‑6, Pärnu mnt.12/Suur-Karja 20, tel. +372 631 33 24, www.ee.burberry.com/. Open 11:00-19:00; Sun 11:0016:00; Sat 11:00-18:00. Gerry Weber A dynamic lifestyle brand for women by a famous German fashion house.QD‑5, Valli 4, tel. +372 648 06 66, www. gerryweber.ee. Open 10:00-20:00; Sat 10:00-19:00; Sun 11:00-17:00. From November open 10:00 - 19:00, Sun 11:00 - 17:00. Hugo Boss QB‑6, Harju 6, tel. +372 631 06 10. Open 10:00-19:00; Sun 11:00-16:00; Sat 11:00-17:00. Luisa Spagnoli The Italian brand Luisa Spagnoli is known for its luxurious and elegant knitwear, clothing and accessories for women. QC‑5, Väike-Karja 7, tel. +372 647 70 03. Open 10:00-19:00; Sat 11:00-18:00; Sun 11:00-16:00. Marc Cain QC‑5, Väike-Karja 10, tel. +372 641 84 18, www. marccain.ee. Open 11:00-19:00; Sun 12:00-16:00; Sat 11:00-18:00. facebook.com/TallinnInYourPocket
saku gastro Saku Gastro is a slightly upscale casual restaurant - without the ‚up‘ price-tag. They offer a bit of everything, from Asian to British to local cuisine, and where they can, locally sourced ingredients are incorporated into the dish. See full review on p.63. QE‑4, Rotermanni 14, tel. +372 604 04 10. Open 12:00-23:00; closed Mon, Sun.
MaxMara QC‑5, Pärnu mnt. 8, tel. +372 631 05 14, www.vendors. ee. Open 10:00-19:00; Sat 11:00-17:00; closed Sun. Max & Moi QC‑5, Väike-Karja 7, tel. +372 736 16 65, www. fashionhouse.ee. Open 11:00-19:00; Sat 11:00-18:00; Sun 12:00-16:00. M Fashion Featuring labels such as Billionaire, Harmont & Blaine, Brioni, Corneliani, Pierre Balmain - M Fashion is all about high quality men’s fashion for the fashion conscious.QC‑5, Väike-Karja 5, tel. +372 661 69 19. Open 11:00-19:00; Sat 11:00-17:00; closed Sun. nude A luxury fashion shop selling top brands like Gucci, Dolce & Gabbana, Ralph Lauren, Dsquared2, and more.QC‑5, Pärnu mnt.10/ Suur-Karja 23 (women’s clothing), tel. +372 622 92 02. Men’s clothing: C-5, Pärnu mnt. 10/ Väike-Karja 12, tel. +372 628 22 72. Open 10:00 - 19:00, Sat 11:00 - 17:00, Sun 11:00 - 16:00. Poivre Blanc High quality children’s clothing made in France and Italy, including Italian children’s shoes and accessories.QC‑6, Pärnu mnt. 12, tel. +372 56 86 35 54, www.viamigliore. com. Open 11:00-19:00. StudioT Featuring brands such as Armani Collezioni, Ralph Lauren, Paul Smith, Moncler, Armani Jeans, Jacob Cohen, Dondup and many more.QC‑5, Müürivahe 16, tel. +372 641 19 46, www.studiot.ee. Open 10:00-19:00; Sun 11:0016:00; Sat 11:00-17:00. Versace QC‑5, Väike-Karja 9, tel. +372 648 81 05, www.versace. com. Open 10:00-19:00; Sat 11:00-17:00; closed Sun. October - November 2019
Shopping & Directory Shopping centres Shopping malls of various sorts have sprouted up all over town. Here’s a bit of direction for serious shoppers. Kristiine Centre This bustling shopping mall has a wide mix of shops and services, including a large Prisma grocery store. It also houses O’Learys, the biggest entertainment centre in Estonia for sports events, virtual games and dining.QJ‑8, Endla 45, tel. +372 665 03 41, www.kristiinekeskus.ee. Open 10:00-21:00. Prisma grocery store open 08:00 - 23:00. Nautica With close to 60 shops and a large Rimi Hypermarket, the only one in the city centre, and a large Calle liquor store, this makes Nautica a convenient place to shop between the port and the city centre. There’s plenty of places to get a bite to eat. Enjoy the Aulis beauty salon, along with Park Minigolf and Futuruum, where you can immerse yourself in virtual reality. Q K‑7, Ahtri 9, www.nautica.ee. Open 09:00-20:00. Solaris Solaris is both an entertainment complex and shopping centre with several local design stores and great places to eat.QD‑6, Estonia pst. 9, tel. +372 615 51 00, www. solaris.ee. Open 09:00-23:00. Shops open 10:00 - 21:00. Restaurants open 10:00 - 23:00. Ülemiste Centre Ülemiste centre is the most popular shopping centre in Tallinn with its cosy atmosphere and many opportunities for leisure. It’s truly a one-stop shopping centre with everything from a grocery store and electronics, to shoes and clothing for the whole family. There’s tons of great places to eat, to suit even the pickiest of eaters, as well as plenty of entertainment like the Apollo cinema, O´Learys entertainment center and an indoor play area for kids. For serious shoppers, it’s worth the short trip from the centre. To get there take bus N°15 from the Viru bus terminal to Ülemiste jaam stop or tram N°4 from Viru stop (A-4) to the Ülemiste linnak stop. QM‑8, Suur-Ső‑ jamäe 4, next to Tallinn Airport, tel. +372 603 49 99, www. ulemiste.ee. Open 10:00-21:00.
Viru Keskus This 30,000m2 shopping and dining complex is a large, but very classy addition to downtown’s commercial scene.QE‑5, Viru väljak 4/6, tel. +372 610 14 44, www. virukeskus.com. Open 08:00-21:00. Food department open 09:00 - 22:00. 96 Tallinn In Your Pocket
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Va brik u
ISK LD PA Lille
e ts rim Me
a odi So
Vabaõhumuu seumi tee Rocca al Mare kool
Rocca al Mare
ROCCA AL MARE
ta Ku ng Sa la lm e
u Nis e Taim
na Au i is Ma
Estonian Open Air Museum
st us e
Kold e pst
NOBLESSNER Kalar anna
aa m ule Tu
Pe etr i
di N ii
Er ik a
ru nk Sirbi
Sirbi asi Al
Lin Sit a si
s aa Kl
ti ra Ma
Sepa S e p sta ta Sü Ket
i lur Ka
1, 2 pli Kopli
Church Museum Monument Bus station Train station Viewpoint Bus line Tram line
Tallinn – Nai ssaar
34A 38 1A
st M as ti
TE IT A
PI R M äe ka lda
Lennart Meri - Tallinn Airport
PE TE RB UR
SU UR -S ÕJ AM
PRO N KSI
Liiva mä e
La sn a
M ere pst
te teLe e
LUITE na li te
Ku lda la t ee
Su ure kiv i te e
10 tee ike
Aru he ina tee
mn Nii ne
Hä älin urm e
EE AT AN EV V R JÄ
Va na -Ta rtu
Suit su Lu ite
P i kk
V e ne
PÄRNU Sa ka la
U ERB PET
Va na -Lõ un a
ase erl Vi k
e v ip
V i r malise
T LI UU SM AN
u Võr nK Jaa
uli -Ku na Va
TEE NA VA
R PETE Ülemiste jaam T1 4
Ma SikupilliTu ha jak a K a K i vi mu tus Majaka põik r e ru Pae 2 p A RT Sikupilli api EE U BURI T
a s tee
ti las al
RA OD Lubja
IK e Varr TEHN Vi a
äe m E TE A sun NA dus AG e LA L u bj
GN A T E E
K ENTAL I Võis Herne tlus
ni an lm Faeh
G ON SIOR I Juh an Ku nd eri ld Gi
Kadriorg Augu Weize nbe rgi Palace Peter the Great Lydia Ko House idu la Mikkel Kumu an Eduard a J Vilde LAA
e lg Va
e rn He
38 34A 1A
AM RV NA
a nn sli Uu
a si rav Jüri Vilm
IT MB LE
ri R av
Hag u Paid di e
Tõru Punga Urva
Maarjamäe History Centre
Song Festival Grounds (Lauluväljak) NARVA M NT Joa
ä siv Ve
Ülikool 34A 38 Pronksi 1A F.R. Kreutzwaldi 13 ua
tee Kose Halj
T J. Poska TU U K RI Uus-Sadama 1 3 RVA MN 1 3 Kadriorg NA Tallinna Karu st
ägi Tõnis m
A nur ga ule Lepa
PIR I Tu T
Tallin n–H elsink Tallin i n–A egna
1A 34 Hobujaama 38
IA AL A LIIV
Saku Ko hi la
21 21 nismägi
uh a de vi k u
A. Laikmaa 3 4 Viru 1A 34 Viru 41B 38 M ü 21B 41 21 Kaubamaja T Estonia 42 ALA PST Vabaduse väljak Paberi ÄV B 42
1B 41 4
U Rummukõrtsi MM
i elsink n–H Tallin amn arieh n–M Tallin
Põhja puiestee Linnahall 12 AMA SAD AI 1B Linnahall K 41 4 B 1 21 2
tzebue Ko op Balti jaam li Balti jaam
Jah u o
am B 1 21 2
ti p ga
kja K õr
ar Pat urSu
Maritime Museum Seaplane Harbour
Tallinn Olympic Yachting Centre
Locally-written and produced guide to Tallinn, Estonia.