5 CHALLENGE IDEAS FOR UNUSUAL TRAVEL AROUND ESTONIA – ANASTASIIA (UKRAINE)
Estonia is a very beautiful country and the more I explore it, the more I am convinced of it. There are tourist attractions like the charming medieval streets of Tallinn, the creative student vibes in Tartu, the beauty of the sea in Pärnu, the medieval Castle in Narva, etc. They are totally worth sightseeing.
But after living my first year here and actively traveling around this small and picturesque country, I started to feel tired of these typical tourist guides and top 10 popular places to visit which I have already seen several times. So, I decided to make my trips more interesting and, at the same time, to see some secret and unusual places in Estonia.
For this, I started to travel not just because of the place, but with the particular goal and there are my own top 5 ideas how to make your trips around Estonia more fascinating and unusual.
1. HUNT FOR LIGHTHOUSES
Do you know that Estonia is full of old lighthouses that are located around the whole country? So, what about seeing all of them or at least the most beautiful ones
To unlock this achievement, open the Wikipedia page in which all Estonian lighthouses are listed and explore the ones you like!
My personal advice is to see the Kiipsaare lighthouse that is located on the territory of Vilsandi National Park (Saaremaa island) and can only be accessed on foot. This very long walk is totally worth it not only because of the beautiful lighthouse that is received a nickname the Pisa Tower of Saaremaa (it became tilted years ago) but also because of the beauty of the unique nature that is saved in Vilsandi National Park.
2. COLLECT THE YELLOW FRAMES IN SOUTH ESTONIA
Yes, you definitely see this big yellow frame in Raekoja plats in Tartu, but do you know that it is a part of the big National Geographic project that aimed to attract your attention to the beauty of the South Estonia? This project has a name “Living on the Edge” and includes 21 yellow windows that are located in marvelous places in South Estonia.
If you follow this route and take a picture of every frame, you will see some secret places that are not included in typical guides, as well as you will meet amazing people and learn a lot about South of Estonia. Let’s rent a car and compete who will collect all of them faster!
3. SEE ALL MEDIEVAL CASTLES
Medieval Old Town in Tallinn is fascinating and amazing, I love it a lot, but there are also a lot of ancient castles around the country that were built by Germans, Danes, Swedes, and Russians during different historical periods. And believe me, these castles are worth discovering. Check the list of them in Wikipedia, pick your favorite one and let’s the fairy-tale come to your life!
If you want my advice where to start, I will recommend you first to see Narva Castle which is located on the border with Russia and where you can not only feel the history, but also to enjoy the amazing view on the two warring fortresses in the past between Ivangorod and Narva.
But if you have already been to Narva, go to Haapsalu, the cozy town in the North Estonia, and explore Haapsalu Bishop’s Castle, where the most famous Estonian ghost, the White Lady, lives! Maybe, you will meet her and she will tell you the sad story of her love to the priest, who knows.
4. UNLOCK STREET ART IN TARTU
If you do not have time for traveling around the country but you still want to enliven your walks around the town, what about seeing all street arts in Tartu?
Tartu is famous for its street art festival Stencibility which takes place every summer since 2010, so it is not surprising that there are a lot of high-quality graffiti on the street walls. There is even a special map for seeing all of them, so for your next walk around the city, just take this map, wear comfortable shoes and go exploring!
I advise you to go to the Freedom Gallery at Vabaduse Bridge, where there is a large spontaneous number of street art works, gradually developing, my favorite one is a deer, and what about yours?
5. DISCOVER ALL ISLANDS IN ESTONIA
It is a famous fact that Estonia has over 2000 islands. Quite impressive, right? So, what about to set a goal and see all of them during your studies here?
For the beginning, go to the largest island, Saaremaa, where you can find activities for any taste. Do not forget to rent a car or invite someone with it, because it is quite difficult to get over all cool destinations such as Angla Windmill Mount and Kaali field of meteorite craters.
Also, do not miss the chance to ride across Europe’s longest ice road to Hiiumaa, which is the second biggest island in Estonia where you can relax after your studies, drink a glass of beer or go to see one the oldest lighthouses, Kõpu, which was built at the 16th century.
So, challenge accepted?