Backpacking Estonia

If you’re currently having a hard time deciding on your next holiday destination, what about backpacking across Estonia? Estonia is a country with well over 1,500 islands and many beaches, old monuments, churches, museums, lakes and forests. We hope you’ll have fun exploring our ideal backpacking route of Estonia!


Important Basics

Official Language ( Estonian )
EnglishEstonian
HelloTere
GoodbyeTsau
Thank youAitäh
YesJah
NoEi
Capital City

Tallinn

Form of Government

Parliamentary republic

Best Time to Visit

June to September – highest average temperatures in July and August

Fun Facts
  • There are more tourists visiting Estonia every year than people actually living in the country.
  • Half of the country is covered with forests, thus offering the perfect conditions for a diverse fauna.
  • Since 2005, it’s possible to vote digitally for elections.

Cities

Tallinn

Your first stop in Estonia is the beautiful city of Tallinn. The capital is incredibly charming with beautiful landscapes, historical monuments, and many wonderful sights.

Don't forget to take an Instagram-worthy picture of the city at night, as Tallinn is beautifully lit up. There are so many fun things to do in Tallinn – you’ll never be bored! How about taking a stroll through the city to experience the ambiance and discover the beautiful architecture? Or how about going club-hopping? This is also a great way to start your holiday: go from club to club, dance, and try out different drinks at the same time. Estonians like to drink a lot, but you better don't overdo it. After all, you still got a lot to see!

There are many cool cafés to relax in Telliskivi Loomelinnak if you need a break from your exploration of the city. You can also make a stop in the beautiful city of Helsinki, which is only a few hours away by ferry, or visit the Bastion Passages, which are located in the old town of Tallinn. These tunnels were built in the 17th century to monitor weapons and ammunition, observe the enemy and protect the city against an invasion. You can admire some of the best artworks made by local and international artists at the Kumu Art Museum. Did you know that it’s the largest museum and Tallinn, and was awarded the title of Europe's best museum in 2008?

Your tour of the city won’t be complete until you go check out the 314-meter viewing platform on top of the Tallinn TV Tower. You’ll get an amazing view of the city! It’s also the highest building in Estonia. Furthermore, you should see the Estonian Open Air Museum, which showcases Estonia's ancient buildings – St. OLAFS Church and the Water Airport (Sea Museum). Here, you’ll get to admire a real submarine, Estonian craftsmanship, an icebreaker, a submarine from 1930, and the remains of the first ship made by Estonians. Additionally, you shouldn't miss the Great Guild Hall and St. Catherine's Monastery. Make sure to try out some of Tallinn's best dishes as well!

You can stay at one of Tallinn’s hostels for the night, where you can get a bed in a 6-person dorm for €14 a night.

Kuressaare

You can get from Tallinn to Kuressaare for about €12. We recommend spending 2-3 days here to be able to get the full Kuressaare experience. One of the best sights in the city is the Saaremaas Museum and Spa. The landscape is characterized by forests, fields, and villages. The flat roads are perfect for exploring the villages by bike and admiring the colorful trees. The Loode Oak forest and the Angla and Kaali meteorite craters, which are close to the forest, are particularly worth seeing. It is definitely an impressive sight. A highlight of Kuressaare is the town castle, built in the 13th century.

You can spend the night in a hostel, where you’ll get a bed in an 8-person dorm for €13 a night.

Pärnu 

You can get from Kuressaare to Pärnu by bus for about €8. We recommend you spend at least 3 days in Pärnu to make sure you get to see everything the city has to offer. Besides the beautiful beaches, there are plenty of other things to discover. 

The city is a real leisure and recreation center for the locals. Some must-see attractions in Pärnu include the red tower, formerly used as a prison; the protestant church overlooking the city; the Pärnu Cultural Museum with an 8,000-year-old sculpture of the oldest humans in the Baltic and Scandinavia; the numerous spas, and the Sormaa National Park and its exotic landscapes.

You can get a double room at a campsite for about €12 a night. 

Kallaste 

Your next stop is the city of Kallaste, which you can reach by bus for €12. Kallaste offers some of the best tourist attractions in Estonia. Nature-lovers should check out the cliffs of Kallaste and Kassari Island (among the fifth-largest islands in Estonia, with 19.3 sq km).

One of the architectural monuments in Kallaste is the Kopu lighthouse, dating back to the 15th century, which emits light beams up to 102.6 meters high. It is an architectural wonder that you’ll see when on the road to Kallaste. Some historical attractions are Estonia's first glass work from the year 1628 and the settlement of Ahjuvare. In the settlement of Ahjuvare, you can see the seasonal stone buildings of the fishermen of Estonia (or rather what is left of them).

You can stay in one of the city’s accommodations for the night. You’ll get a comfortable bed in a 4-person dorm for €12 a night.

Lahemaa National Park

You can get from Kallaste to Lahemaa National Park by bus for about €8. Lahemaa National Park is located in the northern part of Estonia. It’s the perfect place for a hike, and one of the greatest forest reserves in Europe. It’s filled with sand beaches, trees, and rocks. You’ll also get to see the highest waterfall in Estonia. There are old mansions near the park and sea villages which you can visit.

When you are finished with your tour, you can return to one of the guest houses available on-site, where you get a double bed for €15 a night. 


Tallinn

Tallinn

Your first stop in Estonia is the beautiful city of Tallinn. The capital is incredibly charming with beautiful landscapes, historical monuments, and many wonderful sights.

Don't forget to take an Instagram-worthy picture of the city at night, as Tallinn is beautifully lit up. There are so many fun things to do in Tallinn – you’ll never be bored! How about taking a stroll through the city to experience the ambiance and discover the beautiful architecture? Or how about going club-hopping? This is also a great way to start your holiday: go from club to club, dance, and try out different drinks at the same time. Estonians like to drink a lot, but you better don't overdo it. After all, you still got a lot to see!

There are many cool cafés to relax in Telliskivi Loomelinnak if you need a break from your exploration of the city. You can also make a stop in the beautiful city of Helsinki, which is only a few hours away by ferry, or visit the Bastion Passages, which are located in the old town of Tallinn. These tunnels were built in the 17th century to monitor weapons and ammunition, observe the enemy and protect the city against an invasion. You can admire some of the best artworks made by local and international artists at the Kumu Art Museum. Did you know that it’s the largest museum and Tallinn, and was awarded the title of Europe's best museum in 2008?

Your tour of the city won’t be complete until you go check out the 314-meter viewing platform on top of the Tallinn TV Tower. You’ll get an amazing view of the city! It’s also the highest building in Estonia. Furthermore, you should see the Estonian Open Air Museum, which showcases Estonia's ancient buildings – St. OLAFS Church and the Water Airport (Sea Museum). Here, you’ll get to admire a real submarine, Estonian craftsmanship, an icebreaker, a submarine from 1930, and the remains of the first ship made by Estonians. Additionally, you shouldn't miss the Great Guild Hall and St. Catherine's Monastery. Make sure to try out some of Tallinn's best dishes as well!

You can stay at one of Tallinn’s hostels for the night, where you can get a bed in a 6-person dorm for €14 a night.

Kuressaare

Kuressaare

You can get from Tallinn to Kuressaare for about €12. We recommend spending 2-3 days here to be able to get the full Kuressaare experience. One of the best sights in the city is the Saaremaas Museum and Spa. The landscape is characterized by forests, fields, and villages. The flat roads are perfect for exploring the villages by bike and admiring the colorful trees. The Loode Oak forest and the Angla and Kaali meteorite craters, which are close to the forest, are particularly worth seeing. It is definitely an impressive sight. A highlight of Kuressaare is the town castle, built in the 13th century.

You can spend the night in a hostel, where you’ll get a bed in an 8-person dorm for €13 a night.

Pärnu 

Pärnu 

You can get from Kuressaare to Pärnu by bus for about €8. We recommend you spend at least 3 days in Pärnu to make sure you get to see everything the city has to offer. Besides the beautiful beaches, there are plenty of other things to discover. 

The city is a real leisure and recreation center for the locals. Some must-see attractions in Pärnu include the red tower, formerly used as a prison; the protestant church overlooking the city; the Pärnu Cultural Museum with an 8,000-year-old sculpture of the oldest humans in the Baltic and Scandinavia; the numerous spas, and the Sormaa National Park and its exotic landscapes.

You can get a double room at a campsite for about €12 a night. 

Kallaste 

Kallaste 

Your next stop is the city of Kallaste, which you can reach by bus for €12. Kallaste offers some of the best tourist attractions in Estonia. Nature-lovers should check out the cliffs of Kallaste and Kassari Island (among the fifth-largest islands in Estonia, with 19.3 sq km).

One of the architectural monuments in Kallaste is the Kopu lighthouse, dating back to the 15th century, which emits light beams up to 102.6 meters high. It is an architectural wonder that you’ll see when on the road to Kallaste. Some historical attractions are Estonia's first glass work from the year 1628 and the settlement of Ahjuvare. In the settlement of Ahjuvare, you can see the seasonal stone buildings of the fishermen of Estonia (or rather what is left of them).

You can stay in one of the city’s accommodations for the night. You’ll get a comfortable bed in a 4-person dorm for €12 a night.

Lahemaa National Park

Lahemaa National Park

You can get from Kallaste to Lahemaa National Park by bus for about €8. Lahemaa National Park is located in the northern part of Estonia. It’s the perfect place for a hike, and one of the greatest forest reserves in Europe. It’s filled with sand beaches, trees, and rocks. You’ll also get to see the highest waterfall in Estonia. There are old mansions near the park and sea villages which you can visit.

When you are finished with your tour, you can return to one of the guest houses available on-site, where you get a double bed for €15 a night. 

Estonia Route Map

Itinerary and Stops.

Tag
Route/Station
Transport
Unterkunft
1. Home – Tallinn
Home – Tallinn
Flight
75
6-person dorm
14
2. Tallinn
Tallinn
-
6-person dorm
14
3. Tallinn- Kuresaare
Tallinn- Kuresaare
Bus
12
8-person dorm
13
4. Kuresaare
Kuresaare
-
8-person dorm
13
5. Kuresaare
Kuresaare
-
8-person dorm
13
6. Kuresaare- Parnu
Kuresaare- Parnu
Bus
8
4-person dorm
15
7. Parnu
Parnu
-
4-person dorm
15
8. Parnu
Parnu
-
4-person dorm
15
9. Parnu - Kallaste
Parnu - Kallaste
Bus
12
4-person dorm
12
10. Kallaste
Kallaste
-
4-person dorm
12
11. Kallaste
Kallaste
-
4-person dorm
12
12. Kallaste- Lahemaa NP
Kallaste- Lahemaa NP
Bus
8
4-person dorm
15
13. Lahemaa NP
Lahemaa NP
-
4-person dorm
15
14. Lahemaa NP
Lahemaa NP
-
4-person dorm
15
15. Lahemaa NP - Tallinn
Lahemaa NP - Tallinn
Bus
5
6-person dorm
14
16. Tallinn – Home
Tallinn – Home
Flight
75

Total price.

Flights 150,00
Transportation 45,00
Tours 0,00
Accommodation 207,00
Total402,00

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Dos and Donts, Food & Drinks, Costs.

Breakfast

Karma:  this dessert is similar to semolina pudding and is a popular breakfast dish in Estonia. It’s served with a cup of milk or coffee.

Soups

Eel soup: a delicacy from Estonia is the eel soup.

Cabbage soup: this simple, creamy cabbage soup is very popular among Estonians and will make for a great lunch or snack.

Main courses

Kilud: the Baltic herring is considered the national fish and therefore an absolute must for you. It is usually prepared with lemon and garlic and served with a creamy sauce.

Mulgi kapsas: this is pork prepared with sauerkraut. A classic in Estonia.

Mulgi powder: mashed potatoes are an integral part of meals in Estonia. It’s best eaten with delicious meat, fish or stir-fried vegetables.

Taidetud Basikarind: in Estonia, this roast veal is stuffed with vegetables and herbs and is considered a feast.

Sult:  this is glazed pork. It is usually served with sauerkraut and potatoes as a side dish.

Drinks

Poltsamaa Kuldne: this cider local cider is an important part of the culture.

Vana Tallinn: the liqueur is often mixed into coffee or used in desserts, and tastes amazing!

Estonia

In Estonia, payments are made in Euro. You can see the prices for certain products as well as the cost of living below.

Cost of living

Food

Free time

Personal Hygiene

Dos

Exploring the whole country: Estonia is much more than just Tallinn. Explore the country's landscapes and beaches – you’ll be amazed!

Culinary journey: try as much of the local cuisine if you can – it tastes incredibly good!

Flowers as a gift: if you are invited somewhere, flowers are the right gift. They are highly valued in the country.

Don'ts

Drinking in public: in Estonia, drinking in public and outside bars is prohibited. Follow the law so you won’t get in trouble with the police.

Taking the train: avoid taking the train. Speaking from experience, the trains are never on time.

Disrespect: in Estonia, disrespectful behavior towards the country is considered an absolute no-go. Avoid it and show the locals how comfortable you feel in their country.

Visa, Visa, Passport & Vaccinations

Passport

Yes

Temporary passport

Yes

National ID

Yes

Temporary national ID

Yes

Child’s pass

Yes

Visa

Yes

Vaccine

Robert Koch Instituts

Additional Remarks.

Travel documents must be valid. Please also inform yourself on the current entry regulations regarding the Corona virus. Current information about this can be found at the your country’s Foreign Office.

The team at Backpacker Trail wishes you lots of fun and an unforgettable trip!

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