Tallinn Journals

Medieval Tallinn - 'A Well Kept Secret'

A February 2002 trip to Tallinn by raycarstairs

Tallinn Photo, Tallinn, Estonia More Photos
Quote: If you don't fall in love with Tallinn, then quite frankly, there's something wrong with you. Tallinn has it all - a medieval castle, cathedrals, quaint streets and an almost old world ambience which will leave you gagginng for more - read on.

Medieval Tallinn - 'A Well Kept Secret'

Overview

Tallinn Photo, Tallinn, Estonia
Quote:
It's difficult to identify any individual part of Tallinn as a favorite attraction - the attraction itself really lies in the complete package - the Tallinn experience. I get the feeling that since being designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site, Tallinn has begun to attract a lot more tourists, but because of it's 'off the beaten track' location, things haven't yet snowballed into a tourist trap - go there soon before everyone else does.Quick Tips: Take your time - in the Old Town, no-one is in a rush - there's no need.Best Way To Get Around: In most cities you are unlikely to go and explore the suburbs and Tallinn is no exception.However, the Old Town has all you need to keep you oc...Read More

Peppersteak's

Restaurant

Quote:
Peppersteaks is a relatively new Gothic style restaurant/bar right in the heart of the Old Town just off Raekoja Plats. Despite it's traditional feel and costumed staff, the ambience is tasteful and relaxed, focusing mainly on Estonian fare which has been jazzed up a bit. Tables are well spaced out and the candlelight adds to the romantic atmosphere.To be honest, the food and service were difficult to fault with some interesting Eastern European and Russian combinations. Try smoked beaver with herbs or cheese soup with Gobrushka (trout). Despite being almost exclusively a nation of carnivores, Peppersteaks has many viable veggie options - try the oyster mushrooms with pine nuts.For quality f...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on October 10, 2002

Vanaema Juures

Restaurant

Quote:
For the ultimate Estonian dining experience you have to visit Vanaema Juures (Grandma's Place). This intimate little restaurant is tucked away in a quiet cellar, just off the street, in the Old Town, and it is big on atmosphere - you really feel like you're stepping into Grandma's house but not in a tacky, touristy kind of way. The menu tends to focus on traditional Estonian fare which is both tasty and wholesome without being fussy. Furthermore, most of the food is not smothered in the staple sour cream that you find almost everywhere else in Estonia. This was the best meal we had in Estonia and we had to book a couple of days in advance to secure a reservation (in July). Try Grandma's scrumptious me...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on October 16, 2002

Elevant

Restaurant

Quote:
As bizzare as an Estonian/Indian/Scandinavian restaurant may sound, Elevant fits into this niche and suprisingly works well. The large restaurant is big on atmosphere with widely spaced tables and ambient lighting and service is very efficient, yet unobtrusive. Having spent three weeks touring all of the Baltic States we yearned for some spicy food after the typical blandness of standard Baltic fare. We weren't disappointed!Elevant successfully fuses Indian staples and gives them an Estonian twist - Wild Boar Korma (which I can reccomend) and Reindeer Bhoona. Although wine is the only alcohol which tends to be pricey in Estonia, Elevant offers a modest range of tastey wines - the house red is reaso...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on October 16, 2002

Alexander Nevsky Cathedral Photo, Tallinn, Estonia
Quote:
Despite the fact that the Alexander Nevsky Cathedral is by Tallinn's medieval standards a recent addition, this imposing 19th Century Russian Orthodox structure is really quite stunning and is accentuated by the fact that its 'onion domes' look comletely out of context. Apparently, the Russians built this as part of their Russification program, choosing its location beside the Estonian parliament very carefully.

It's well worth a look inside as the interior is very ornate, adorned with many icons and frescos. To be honest it's impossible to do it justice - even my photo doesn't come close.

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on October 16, 2002

Alexander Nevsky Cathedral
Toompea, Upper Old Town
Tallinn, Estonia

Raekoja Plats Photo, Tallinn, Estonia
Quote:
This is a delightful tiny cafe located in the basement of the Town Hall on Raekoja Plats. The focus is on relaxation and atmosphere as well as fab coffee, beer and snacks. Prices are very cheap and they play great music. It's a superb spot for people watching and you can soak up the view across the square for hours or quench your thirst after scaling the steeple of the Town Hall (see photos)- best spot in Tallinn for whiling away a quiet afternoon - we kept going back.