We arrived from Riga by Lux Express bus which took 4 hours and 25 minutes.
Tallinn is the capital of Estonia and a truly picturesque place to visit!
Its strategic location, located on the Gulf of Finland and the Baltic Sea,
attracts many tourists every year.
One of the main attractions of Tallinn is the Old Town which has managed to preserve
its medieval ambiance and has earned the UNESCO World Heritage Site designation.
- Access to the Old Town from the Tallinn bus terminal
- Viru Gate [Viru Varav]
- Hellemann tower and Town Wall Walkway [Hellemanni torn ja linnamüüri platvorm]
- St. Catherine’s Passage [Katariina käik]
- Church of the Holy Spirit [Püha Vaimu Kirik]
- Town Hall Pharmacy [Revali Raeapteek]
- Town Hall Square [Raekoja plats]
- City walls of Tallinn [Tallinna linnamüür]
- Fat Margaret [Paks Margareeta]
- If you sleep in Tallinn…
- Travel to Helsinki with Silja Line
Access to the Old Town from the Tallinn bus terminal
Address: Lastekodu 46, 10144 Tallinn, Estonia
The Tallinn Bus Station is probably the furthest entry point from the center! (25 minutes on foot)
Fortunately, there are 2 trams that reach Viru Gate, the entrance to the old town, in 15 minutes.
The tram stop closest to the bus terminal is called “Bussijaam” where trams 4 and 2 depart:
• Tram 4 (Tondi) 4 stops: Get off at Viru
• Tram 2 (Kopli) 4 stops: Get off at Mere Puiestee
You can buy tickets at the ticket machines, or on board from the driver for cash.
One-hour ticket (60 min): €1.50 (onboard €2)
One-day ticket (24h): €4.50
We bought ours via the pilet.ee app ( QR-ticket)
If you register your e-mail, a QR ticket will be sent to your e-mail.
You don’t have to show the ticket to the driver and you can board from any door.
However, it’s necessary to validate each entry at the orange validators inside the bus.
Viru Gate [Viru Varav]
Viru Gate is the main entrance to the Old Town of Tallinn.
Once part of the defensive system of the city walls, the twin towers were built in the 14th century.
Boutiques, stalls, and trendy restaurants are lined up at the gate entrance.
Hellemann tower and Town Wall Walkway [Hellemanni torn ja linnamüüri platvorm]
Opening hours: 11:00 – 17:00
Price: Adult €4 / Child: €2
Close to Viru Gate, there is Hellemann tower where visitors can climb up the tower
and walk along the wall for about 200 meters
St. Catherine’s Passage [Katariina käik]
The St. Catherine’s Passage is a charming alley where you can enjoy a unique medieval atmosphere.
This passageway named after the old St Catherine’s church connects Vene to Muurivahe street.
It is lined by lots of handicraft workshops selling ceramics, jewelry, etc.
Church of the Holy Spirit [Püha Vaimu Kirik]
Address: Pühavaimu 2, 10123 Tallinn, Estonia
The Church of the Holy Spirit is the oldest Gothic church in Tallinn, built in the 14th century.
It has a unique design, with a tower and a large clock on the façade, dated 1684.
The interior is beautifully decorated with carved wood and it houses the oldest pulpit in Estonia.
Town Hall Pharmacy [Revali Raeapteek]
Address: Raekoja plats 11, 10146 Tallinn, Estonia
Opening hours: Mon- Sat 10 – 18
Founded in 1422, the Town Hall Pharmacy is the oldest in Europe.
In the retro shop, you can admire original furniture and the ancient medical equipment used
during the Medieval era, when people relied on plant roots, herbs, and other natural sources.
Town Hall Square [Raekoja plats]
Town Hall Square is the main square in the Old Town and it has always been the heart of the city
as it has served as a marketplace since the 11th century.
The square is very wide, and it is home to lively cafes, restaurants, and markets
that sell Estonian traditional knitwear and souvenirs.
In winter, this is where the wonderful Christmas markets take place since 1441.
City walls of Tallinn [Tallinna linnamüür]
The city wall was first built in wood in the 13th century and it is
among the most well-preserved in Europe.
The walls have 1.9 km of its original wall and 20 defensive towers.
Many of the Town Wall’s towers serve as museums.
Fat Margaret [Paks Margareeta]
Address: Pikk 70, 10133 Tallinn, Estonia
Opening hours: 10 – 18
Price: € 15
Fat Margaret is one of the most impressive defensive structures.
Today, it’s a museum dedicated to all maritime aspects of the history of Estonia.
Tallinn’s old town with pretty pastel-colored buildings is compact and can be explored on foot. Regardless of where you go, you will come across wonderful scenery
that you will want to capture in a photo.
A supermarket you’ll encounter in Tallinn is “Rimi”:
recommended the “Kalev chocolate” that only costs € 1.
If you sleep in Tallinn…
Compared to Riga, Tallinn is a weekend holiday destination for many Finns
so it’s slightly more expensive than Riga.
We stayed in an apartment in the Old Town, not far from St. Catherine’s Passage.
The apartment was spacious with a bedroom, kitchen, and bathroom.
We had everything we needed: WiFi, a hairdryer, an iron, and towels.
The advantage is that the price is lower than a hotel.
However, Tallinn, just like Riga is full of irregular stones, and therefore
pulling the suitcase in the historic center was tiring.
After spending one night in Tallinn, we headed to Helsinki on the Sija Line early in the morning.
The port is a 20-minute walk from the historic center.
We booked an uber through the app and reached the port in comfort for only 5 euros.
Travel to Helsinki with Silja Line
Helsinki is only 85 km from Tallinn and is a two-hour trip by Silja Line. You could use Helsinki
as a base for a day trip to Tallinn or a trip around the Baltic countries like we did, at a low price.
This time, we used the Megastar Silja Line between Tallinn and Helsinki.
There was everything: restaurants, cafes, shops, duty-free shops, lounges, luggage storage.
One way €27 (price may vary)
I think it is not necessary to book a cabin because it is about 2 hours away,
the ship’s lounge is also spacious and comfortable.
By ferry, the Baltic countries are so close … we were able to visit 4 countries including
the two most expensive countries, Sweden and Finland.
We managed to stay on budget by using the ferry and long-distance buses.
If you take the plane, you have to pay for the plane ticket and the hotel,
instead if you travel with Silja line you will have both.
In the future, I think I will do this again and add Vilnius, the capital of Lithuania.