I totally fell in love with Tallinn – a stylish and modern and at the same time historical city. If you have a few days time you can see many very diverse parts of the city. I visited Tallinn in the beginning of October 2016, the weather was erratic but still fine and the city was not too crowded. Let’s start our little photographic tour with the touristy must of the medieval city centre and Toompea Hill with its representative government buildings and churches.
The medieval fortification of Tallinn is really impressing, I never saw such a long intact city wall (1,9 km). It has 20 large defensive towers with a very characteristic look. At the old city centre there are many beautiful buildings but it is also very touristic, with theme-restaurants where the waiters wear medieval clothes etc.
Tallinn has many Scandinavian and Russian influences. There are many traditional houses with wooden fronts – very photogenic at the warm light of the autumn sun. The paint is often flaking off, which gives the city a morbid charm.
Also the people of Estonia seem to have a hand for design. I loved the formerly industrial workers quarter near the harbor named “Kalamaja” (“Fish House”). It is a place for alternative art and design, music and the meeting point for the young people to go out, eat and have a drink. There are many wonderful arts and crafts shops and stylish bars and cafés.
All this medieval history and modern style is mixed up with the remnants of the Soviet times. They are especially visible at the harbor (many war ships). The many Russians living in Tallinn do their shopping at markets like “Keskturg” (Central Market) – the real experience, mainly food, sometimes stinky – or the one behind the Balti Station called “Balti Jaama Turg” which is more like a flea market.
If you are interested in history and like to get the creeps, you should also see my pictures of the abandoned jail “Patarei” at the harbor. You can read more about it on this blog.