Lakes, forests and beaches make up one of Europe’s smallest but prettiest countries. Estonians have fiercely defended their culture through decades of Soviet influence, and now it’s celebrated everywhere you turn. Fabulous food, gorgeous medieval towns and a sense of joyful independence set Estonia apart.
Estonia Tours & Travel
All our Estonia trips
Articles on Estonia
At a glance
|Capital city:||Tallinn (population 417,000)|
|Time zone:||(GMT+02:00) Helsinki, Kyiv, Riga, Sofia, Tallinn, Vilnius|
|Electricity:||Type C (European 2-pin) Type F (German 2-pin, side clip earth)|
Best time to visit Estonia
July and August are the hottest and busiest months in Estonia. From May to September, days are mild and the nights cool. Though snowy in winter, there’s regular, mild to moderate rainfall throughout the year, becoming slightly heavier towards spring. Slush under foot is something you have to cope with in autumn, when snow falls then melts, and in spring, when the winter snow thaws.
Geography and environment
Top 10 Estonian Tastes
1. Marineeritud Angerjas
If you want the real Estonian food experience, it’s best to start with this slippery little number - marinated eel served cold.
Pork is a staple of Estonian food, and no pork dish is more popular than sult - boiled pork in jelly. Step inside an Estonian home to see jar after jar of jelly setting on the shelves.
Dig in to a hearty serving of sauerkraut stew with pork and boiled potatoes. It’ll keep you going all winter, and well into spring.
This beer is made from rye or oat malts filtered through straw and juniper twigs. It’s claimed to be one of the world’s oldest continuous beer-making traditions, drawing inspiration from Babylonian beer-making methods.
5. Saku Originaal
For a more modern taste, join the locals in a Saku Originaal - a fine lager, and the most popular in Estonia.
There’s nothing like sprats if they’re accompanied with bacon and lashings of sour cream.
This non-alcoholic drink has been nicknamed ‘the Estonian Coca-Cola’ for its sweet, slightly fizzy taste.
If you’re lucky enough to spend Christmas in Estonia, be sure to try this blood and barley sausage. It’s similar to black pudding and served with berry jam.
A thick dessert drink made with sour milk (kefir) and a mixture of ground grains - rye, oat barley and pea flour.
10. Keel Hernestega
Not for the faint hearted, this dish of cold tongue is usually served with horseradish for added pizazz.
FAQs on Estonia
Cup of coffee = 2 Euro
Beer in a bar or restaurant = 2 Euro
Simple lunch = 5 Euro
Three-course meal = 12 Euro
Short taxi ride = 4 Euro
For more information on insurance, please go to: Travel Insurance
Feb 24 Independence
Mar 29 Good Friday
May 1 Labour Day
May 18 Whit Sunday (Pentecost)
Jun 23 Voidupuha (Victory Day)
Jun 24 Jaanipaev (St John’s Day/Midsummer’s Day)
Aug 20 Restoration of Independence Day
Dec 25 Christmas Day
Dec 26 Boxing Day
Please note these dates are for 2013. For a current list of public holidays go to:
Health and Safety
Intrepid takes the health and safety of its travellers seriously, and takes every measure to ensure that trips are safe, fun and enjoyable for everyone. We recommend that all travellers check with their government or national travel advisory organisation for the latest information before departure:
From New Zealand?
Go to: http://www.voyage.gc.ca/
Go to: http://travel.state.gov/
Go to: http://www.fco.gov.uk/en/
The World Health Organisation
also provides useful health information:
Go to: http://www.who.int/en/
Estonia Travel Tips
Top responsible travel tips for Estonia
1. Intrepid is committed to travelling in a way that is respectful of local people, their culture, local economies and the environment. It's important to remember that what may be acceptable behaviour, dress and language in your own country, may not be appropriate in another. Please keep this in mind while travelling.
2. Be considerate of Estonia’s customs, traditions, religion and culture.
3. For environmental reasons, try to avoid buying bottled water. Instead, fill a reusable water bottle or canteen with filtered water.
4. Always dispose of litter thoughtfully, including cigarette butts.
5. Learn some local language and don't be afraid to use it - simple greetings will help break the ice.
6. Shop for locally made products. Supporting local artisans helps keep traditional crafts alive.
7. Refrain from supporting businesses that exploit or abuse endangered animals.
8. Please ask and receive permission before taking photos of people, including children.
|Back On The Map: Adventures In Newly Independent Estonia||Marc Hyman|
|My Estonia: Passport Forgery, Meat Jelly Eaters, and Other Stories||Justin Petrone|
|War in the Woods||Mart Laar|