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A Visit to the Medieval Tallinn, Estonia

submitted on 26 October 2023 by travellistings.org

Entering a Time Capsule

Straight out of a fairy tale, the medieval city of Tallinn, Estonia awaits you with all its charm, magic, and history that would make even the most skeptical wonder if they have been teleported to the past. This gem of the Baltics is a living museum, with its medieval walls, cobbled streets, and an ambiance that can only be described as a delightful cross between the Middle Ages and a hipster paradise.

A Stroll Through the Old Town

No trip to Tallinn would be complete without a stroll through its UNESCO-protected Old Town. Here, the cobblestone streets will lead you through a labyrinth of charming squares, hidden courtyards, and a collection of pastel-colored buildings, each with its own unique story to tell.At the heart of the Old Town lies the Raekoja Plats, where the Gothic Town Hall takes center stage. This architectural marvel has a rich history dating back to the 13th century and features a weather vane depicting Old Thomas, a legendary guardian of the city who has been in place since 1530, keeping watch over its citizens. The Town Hall Square is also home to the oldest continuously-operating pharmacy in Europe, which has been in business for over 600 years and now houses a small museum showcasing the wares and concoctions of yesteryear.

The Toompea Hill

A visit to Tallinn would not be complete without a jaunt up to Toompea Hill, the fortified upper part of the city that was once home to the nobility and clergy. With its picturesque castle, charming wooden houses, and intriguing medieval churches, Toompea is a delightful step back in time. Don't miss the Alexander Nevsky Cathedral, a stunning example of Russian Revival architecture that dominates the skyline and stands as a reminder of Estonia's tumultuous history with its neighbor to the east.While you’re up on the hill, be sure to visit the Kohtuotsa and Patkuli viewing platforms for a bird's-eye view of the city below. The vistas are simply breathtaking, and as you gaze out over the red-tiled roofs and the glistening Baltic Sea beyond, you may find yourself daydreaming of a life spent wandering these enchanting streets.

Delicious Delights of Estonian Cuisine

No visit to a medieval city would be complete without a feast fit for a king, and Tallinn does not disappoint. Estonian cuisine may not be well known, but it is definitely worth exploring. Traditional dishes focus on local ingredients like pork, potatoes, and rye bread, but the city's hip culinary scene is constantly evolving, offering gastronomic delights from all corners of the globe.For a truly medieval dining experience, head to Olde Hansa, where you can dine by candlelight while feasting on wild boar and elk, washed down with spiced wine and honey beer. The staff are all dressed in period garb, and the whole place feels like you've been transported to a medieval banquet hall.

Hidden Treasures of Tallinn

While Tallinn's main attractions are undeniably enchanting, it's worth taking the time to explore some of its lesser-known gems. Tucked away in the Old Town, you'll find St. Catherine's Passage, a narrow alley lined with artists' workshops and small boutiques, where you can purchase unique Estonian crafts and see artisans at work.For a dose of quirkiness, head to the KGB Museum, located in the basement of the Viru Hotel. This former Soviet-era listening post has been preserved with its original equipment, allowing visitors to step into a world of espionage, secrecy, and intrigue.

Nightlife in the Medieval City

As the sun sets and the shadows grow long, Tallinn's nightlife comes to life. From cozy pubs and chic wine bars to pulsating nightclubs and live music venues, there's something for everyone in this city that never sleeps.For a truly unique experience, head to Põrgu, a medieval-themed pub located in the vaulted cellars of Tallinn's Dominican Monastery. Here, you can sip on an Estonian craft beer while soaking in the atmosphere of a 13th-century monastery, complete with flickering candlelight and Gregorian chants playing softly in the background.

A Timeless Adventure Awaits

With its magical blend of history, modernity, and charm, Tallinn is an unforgettable destination that will transport you back in time while keeping you firmly rooted in the present. So pack your bags, book your flights, and get ready for a medieval adventure in Estonia that you'll never forget.

 







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