Recommended sightseeing / main attractions:
The main attractions are in the two old towns (Lower Town and Toompea) which are both easily explorable by foot. The Eastern districts around Pirita and Kadriorg are also worth visiting and the Estonian Open Air Museum (Eesti Vabaõhumuuseum) in Rocca al Mare, west of the city, preserves aspects of Estonian rural culture and architecture.
|Tallinn's old town|
Kadriorg is 2 kilometres east of the centre and is served by buses and trams. Catherinethal, the former palace of Peter the Great, built just after the Great Northern War, now houses (part of) the Art Museum of Estonia, the presidential residence and the surrounding grounds include formal gardens and woodland.
Pirita is a coastal district 2 kilometres north-east of Kadriorg. The marina was built for the Moscow Olympics of 1980, and boats can be hired on the Pirita River. Two kilometres inland are the Botanic Gardens.
Built by Count Nikolai von Glehn in 1886 and surrounded by a sizable park, the romantic, towering Glehn Castle provides a perfect escape from the hustle and bustle of the city centre. Though it was destroyed during World War I, the castle was restored by art groups and students of Tallinn Technical University from 1966-1977.
|The Statue of Estonian National Hero Kalevipoeg|
Von Glehn built a statue of estonian national hero Kalevipoeg (the Son of Kalev). The sculpture was destroyed during World War II, the Russians accused von Glehn of signalling the Germans because the statuse's eyes where glowing to the sea. Kalevipoeg was restored in 1990 and is now a subject of heritage protection.
Down the hill from the Castle and park are out-door swimming pools, that are filled with natural spring water.
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Recommended places to eat:
In Tallinn, tourists will find many different places to eat, most of which are concentrated in the centre and Old Town. In the Old Town you'll find interesting places such as the garlic restaurant Balthazar and the medieval restaurant Olde Hansa (in the latter even the toilets are as they were in medieval times). Have a taste of Estonian cuisine! You'll find Scandinavia's widest choice of wines in the Gloria Wine Cellar. At the beginning of a meal, Estonians will say "Head isu" or "Jätku leiba".
Olde Hansa - The Medieval Restaurant in the Old Town. Expensive, but a must see for everyone.
Olde Hansa was the home of a rich merchant. His house was built in a manner to increase the joy of happy moments in the life of a Hanseatic merchant. Not just for eating delicious food and savoring good drinks, but also for good music and the warmth of hearth and home during Hanseatic times.
Gloria - Often chosen as a VIP dining destination, Gloria is an ultra-chic, 1930s-style establishment with the distinction of once being included on Condé Nast Traveller's top-100 list. Renowned chef de cuisine Dimitri Demjanov serves an aristocratic selection of French and Russian dishes in its grand dining rooms, while the separate Gloria Wine Cellar is also worth a visit for its ambience of cosy luxury.
Kaerajaan - Located right on Town Hall Square, Kaerajaan is a great place to experience modern take on traditional Estonian cuisine. Its name comes from an old folk song and dance, and both the off-beat interior and the inventive dishes on offer resonate with the echoes of the nation's ethnic heritage.
Kloostri Ait - The Cloister's Barn has a decidedly historic feel, mainly thanks to its attachment to the neighbouring Dominican monastery, the oldest building in Tallinn. Intimate in the evenings, when the warm colours come to life, this sophisticated restaurant is no less cosy during the day, when it makes a good stop for lunch. Live ensembles perform on weekends.
More information about where to eat in Tallinn here
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