The capital, Tallinn, encapsulates the history and the spirit of Estonia, its medieval old town rising above the Soviet structures. Elsewhere are spa towns, unspoilt islands and relaxed resorts, ancient castles, pavement cafés and peaceful countryside.
With beaches on the Baltic Sea and Gulf of Finland, gleaming lakes, swathes of forests, pastoral miles, and picturesque towns, Estonia is small in stature but big on beguiling diversity.
The most northerly and most economically successful of the three Baltic states, it is also renowned for its welcoming people, and for seamlessly blending its cultural past and contemporary, convivial lifestyle.
These assets are nowhere more noticeable than in the medieval and modern mix of Tallinn, where the busy port city of Soviet-style buildings turns into a fairy-tale at Toompea Hill, the heart and soul of the capital. A UNESCO World Heritage site, little changed since its Middle Ages heyday, it oozes old-world charm from its city walls to its Baroque splendour, colour-washed houses, cobbled streets, and skyline of turrets and domes.
Amid the 13th-16th century lower enclave, and celebrating its 700th anniversary, Tallinn’s Town Hall is the oldest in northern Europe, and the only one preserved in Gothic style; while the lavish Nevsky Cathedral stands proud in the younger upper town, fully restored to its former 19th-century glory.
And on the outskirts of Tallinn, surrounded by acres of wooded parkland, is the summer residence of Tsars, the Roman-Baroque, Kadriorg (Catherine) Palace, its grandeur emphasised in formal gardens offountains, flowers, and topiary; its founder, Peter the Great, whose own humble cottage, behind the palace, is now the city’s oldest museum.
Winter temperatures stay below freezing for weeks on end; spring arrives, cold and quite late in April, but warms up to around 15° by the end of May; summers (June to August) generally average 20°, but occasionally pick up warm winds from the southeast, to peak at 30°+; and autumn cools to around 10°.
Jules Verne has departures from April to early October, so you can choose the season that suits you best.
Traversing this beautiful country from south to north is an enchanting journey through serene and superb scenery; a gentle introduction to its rural regions, enroute to the captivating capital. Estonia will appeal to lovers of nature and culture alike.
With 45 years’ experience and a passion for creating extraordinary adventures, Jules Verne visits iconic landmarks and lesser-known sites, with expert tour guides who share their local knowledge, and show you hidden gems. Our guests can enjoy the spirit of Estonia, in every sense of the word, with a tasting of Vana Tallin liqueur, a combination of rum, vanilla, citrus oils and cinnamon bark.
Our guided tours to Estonia are ABTA and ATOL protected, and we offer a 100% price guarantee, so you can book with complete confidence.
Four countries, four capitals, and seven centuries of architectural styles, in their street-scenes and monuments, form the focus of this intriguing Baltics tour, as we travel to Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia, and take the ferry across the Gulf for a final day in Finland